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July 15, 2012

Shutters Inc – episode 205

Filed under: alpha 850,D700,focus modes,Nikon,Podcast,Shutters Inc,Sony,Sydney meetup — Bruce Williams @ 12:00

This week, Carl Hemmings wrote back about the 51 (not 52!) focus points on the Nikon DSLR’s.

Last weekend’s Sydney meetup #25 (Hell on Wheels) was a great success. The thing that really struck me (which I shall file away for future reference) was the need to be really aware of placement when using flash to supplement an ‘apparent’ light source within the frame (in this case, a campfire).

And I’m keen to hear from those of you with 10-stop ND filters. Do you ever notice a colour shift in the final images? I am, and I don’t know if it’s a defective filter, a (not so) cheap-and-nasty filter, or if this is the way 10-stop filters are in general.

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April 15, 2012

Shutters Inc – episode 199

Filed under: 700si,film,Minolta,model release form,Podcast,Shutters Inc,Sydney meetup — Bruce Williams @ 12:00

This week, an apology for my ‘facebook fail’.
The reason there’s been no podcast for the last 3 weeks is because I was once again involved in photographing and videoing Sound Business Plan for ARN up at Hayman Island.
Sounds cushy, I know, but it was intense work.
The nest Sydney Meetup (#23 – Black Friday) will have already happened by the time you read this. We’re shooting a ‘European gypsy/fortune teller’-themed shoot.
And just because I don’t cram enough stuff (and stress) into my life, I’ve been out and bought a roll of 200iso Kodak film and a battery for my old Minolta 700si. At this meetup, I will be (or ‘was’?) shooting digital AND film simultaneously. Can’t wait to see if the difference is as noticable as everyone suggests.
Carl Hemmings sent me a link to a Peter Hurley video, where he discusses posing techniques, specifically for the head. I CANNOT RECOMMEND THIS VIDEO ENOUGH! Allocate 15mins of your day and watch this (if, like me, you need help with posing your subjects). Awesome tips.
Adobe Reader 10.2 for Android and iOS is out now and allows for text markup and signing of pdf’s directly on your tablet/phablet/phone. Very excited about this. Custom digital model release forms, here we come!
Also, I’m hoping to get hold of Shelton for ep #200. Watch this space.
And speaking of Shelton, he and Glynn have just passed the 20,000 fans/friends mark on Facebook for Creative Photo Workshops! Well done, fellas!

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November 14, 2010

Shutters Inc – episode 171

This week, Shelton talks about the workshops which CPW conducted in Brisbane this week (and a big shout out to the Breakfast Creek Hotel for helping out with a last-minute location),
including the ups and downs of working with models,
coping with inclement weather,
photographers guilty of over-lighting a subject,
f-stop (backpack style) camera bags,
Photo Continental in Brisbane, who also helped out CPW with a venue,
the launch of the Nikon D7000,
my potential next commercial shoot,
why Mad Max 4 didn’t get shot this year,
and the Egypt photo tour 2011.

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Size: 84720521 bytes
Duration: 55:53

September 5, 2010

Shutters Inc – episode 164

This week, I’m joined by long time SI listener, and multi-published author, Mike Hollman.

Mike offered to call me on skype to discuss my tourism shoot next week, as he has done quite a few gigs along these lines.
Rather than just keep all that info for myself, I asked if Mike would mind if we made it an episode of the podcast, as I felt there might be some good info there for other photographers.

Also mentioned in this episode, the Photographer’s Ephemeris.

Check out some of Mike’s stunning landscape work at

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Size: 66807728 bytes
Duration: 47 :26

April 18, 2010

Shutters Inc – episode 152

This week, Bruce’s holiday, in which I played with some more off-camera flash,
DIY lighting,
Shelton discovers the benefits of blogging, with Kodak asking him to travel to South Africa to shoot/video/blog the World Cup,
Richard Annable alerts us to the potential dangers of beta software,
the Adobe CS5 launch,
content-aware fill in Photoshop CS5,
creating your own presets (rather than using those that ship with your software),
exposing to the left/right of the histogram,
the season finale of House shot entirely on a Canon 5D mk11,
and your last chance to have a crack at the photo retouching competition in order to win yourself a Wacom Intuos 4 graphics tablet!

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Size: 104491230
Duration: 1:04:17

January 24, 2010

Shutters Inc – episode 145

This week, Bruce is excited about having potentially sold his first large format canvas print,
which led to a bit of a discussion about marketing ideas for limited edition fine art works,
tales of woe over how our listeners killed the server after the Joe McNally epiosde was released,
Joe’s video confession,
Bruce’s lens dilemma,
and getting together for a photowalk with your local fellow photographers.

January 10, 2010

Shutters Inc – episode 144

Filed under: alpha 850,CPW,Joe McNally,Podcast,Shutters Inc,Travel — Bruce Williams @ 12:00

Happy new year!
In the first ep for 2010, we talk about our cruise to New Caledonia and Vanuatu,
the new Creative Photo Workshops website,
My new Sony alpha 850,
the Sydney photographers are getting together monthly,
the 5MP/SI party in Melbourne,
and finally, our special guest interview.

November 1, 2009

Shutters Inc – episode 140

Filed under: 7D,alpha 850,Dave Honl,Konica Minolta,Podcast,Shutters Inc,Sony — Bruce Williams @ 12:00

This week, a verbal version of this blog post from earlier in the week regarding the Konica Minolta and Sony alpha850.

Then, a couple of very special guests:

Dave Honl, strobist extrordinaire and creator of the Honl light modifiers, and his actress wife, Claudia Christian.

There is going to be a giveaway alongside this episode.

Dave has generously given us a copy of his 2 DVD set “Light” to giveaway, along with a “starter pack” of HonlPhoto accessories!

Watch this space!

October 28, 2009

The more things change…

Filed under: 7D,alpha 850,Konica Minolta,Shutters Inc,Sony — Bruce Williams @ 9:26

As listeners to Shutters Inc would be aware, I have been salivating of late over Sony’s alpha 850.
My reasons for considering the upgrade are these:
At the 2 workshops I’ve attended (the weekend in Echuca, and the wedding workshop in Melbourne), I have stood shoulder to shoulder with photographers who own cameras less than 12 months old. We have taken the same shots, using almost identical exposure settings, and when you compare the image on the back of my 7D with the images displayed on the backs of some of these newer cameras, the difference has been like chalk and cheese.
So, I had convinced myself that my 7D was getting a bit long in the tooth, that the white balance was not as accurate, that the dynamic range was not as wide, and so on and so on.
Last Saturday, I decided to go to my local camera store and have a ‘hands on’ with the alpha 850 and compare it, specifically, against my 7D.
I explained to the sales girl that I was not planning on buying the camera today, but that I am in the research stage, and wanted to compare. She was ok with me putting one of my CF cards into the alpha so I could take some test shots.
So I grabbed my 135mm f2.8 lens and slapped it on the alpha.
I set a manual white balance (in degrees Kelvin), set the ISO to 400, and set manual exposure at 1/100sec at f2.8.
I took a shot.
I then took that lens and put it on my 7D.
Dialled in all the same settings.
Took the same shot.
Then, I looked at the 2 images on the LCD screens on the backs of the 2 cameras.
The difference was mind-blowing.
The image on the alpha absolutely blew me out of the water, while the image on the back of the 7D just seemed to lack… everything.
So, at that point, I was feeling justified in my desire to upgrade to a newer body.
But, I was going to reserve judgement until I got the 2 images home and into Lightroom.
And that my friends, is where the real story begins.
Upon getting the 2 images into Lightroom and comparing them side by side, I COULD NOT TELL THEM APART.
I kid you not.
They were almost identical.
I did say ‘almost’, right?
Remember that the 7D uses an APS-C size sensor, while the alpha 850 is a 35mm sensor, so the image captured by the 7D was cropped in comparison to the “wider” view of the alpha.
Hence why I’ve cropped the alpha version of the image to be similar in its scope to the 7D image.
With the exception of the cropping of the alpha-generated image, these are both straight out of camera.
Actually, there’s one thing I did do in Lightroom which I did equally to both images.
And that was to set the ‘contrast’ and ‘brightness’ values to zero. I don’t know if it’s a Lightroom thing, or something that the Konica Minolta and Sony bodies do automatically, but I notice that whenever I bring images in to Lightroom, they ALWAYS have a contrast value of 50 and a brightness value of 25.
Not sure why.
So on both of these images, I returned those values to zero, which has made them look REALLY flat, but at least they are equal!
Anyway, below are the 2 images, labelled ‘sample1’ and ‘sample2’.
I’ve done that deliberately so you can’t tell from the filename which image is which.
However, both images have EXIF metadata attached, so you can look to see which image is from which body.
But my point is, WITHOUT cheating, can you tell me which image came from which camera?
To me, this has been both a shock, but also a huge revelation.
What I have learned from this is that what has changed over the last 5 years is not so much the image PROCESSOR technology, but LCD screen technology!
Shelton looked at these before he left for India, and he did make the comment that this was probably not the “be all and end all” test. It’s not exactly challenging lighting, it’s not a high-contrast environment, etc etc, and I totally agree with him on that. Perhaps I need to do some more test shots comparing both bodies under more challenging lighting conditions.
But this simple comparison has been an extremely eye-opening experience for me.
Suffice is to say that had I not done this test, I would have happily gone and dropped A$3k on the alpha 850, believing that it was going to provide a huge increase in quality, and would have then become quite melancholy to discover that that was not the case.
Does this mean I won’t buy the alpha 850?
Probably not.
I’ll more than likely still go that route.
But at least I now have a better idea of what to expect from it when I do.


August 30, 2009

Shutters Inc – episode 134

Filed under: D3x,forum,Panorama,Podcast,Shutters Inc — Bruce Williams @ 20:55

This week,
Richard Ingram wrote to say how much he enjoys the show, but could we have guest hosts when Shelton is unavailable,
Bruce got to play with a Nikon D3x for half an hour through the week (verdict: blown away!),
the canvas of the Tabourie Lake panorama arrived last week (looks stunning, by all accounts!),
and Shelton talks about mentoring (both the pros and the cons), and the pitfalls of getting stuck in one style.
Also, the forum is now open and awaiting your involvement.

June 29, 2009

Homage to Nikon

Filed under: Nikon,PMA,Shutters Inc,trade show — Bruce Williams @ 11:29

This is scary stuff people… watch it at your own risk!

May 3, 2009

Shutters Inc – episode 122

Filed under: EOS 5D mk II,Facebook,Podcast,Shutters Inc,video — Bruce Williams @ 19:20

This week, how to find the group on Facebook,
The D5000 launch in Melbourne,
Yervant made a pretty awesome video using a combination of stills and video shot on a Canon 5D mkll,
plus Shelton begins a new series on turning your photography hobby in to a profitable venture.
In part 1, how to get into domestic photography.

April 19, 2009

Shutters Inc – episode 121

Filed under: D5000,EURion Constellation,GZ-HD6,JVC,Nikon,Podcast,Shutters Inc — Bruce Williams @ 21:07

This week, Shelton talks about the value of photographic workshops,
Daryl Gungadoo alerted me to the “anti-currency-duplication” technology embedded within Photoshop CS4,
EURion Constellation link #1,
EURion Constellation link #2,
Ken Rockwell’s discussion of same,
Erin King hasn’t been keeping up to date with her listening to the podcast (tsk tsk!),
Shelton heading north for the Nikon D5000 launch in Sydney,
plus, my new video camera, the JVC GZ-HD6, and the buying criteria I employed in making my decision.

April 5, 2009

Shutters Inc – episode 120

Filed under: CX1,Podcast,Ricoh,Shutters Inc,White balance,workflow — Bruce Williams @ 12:29

This week, Shelton is playing with the new Ricoh CX1,
plus we talk about white balance,
Daryl Gungadoo’s workflow,
and the dude at Paxton’s at North Ryde who deserves an award for telling the truth!
Unlike the clown I ran into yesterday (long after this podcast was recorded, unfortunately) at Clive Anthony’s in Castle Hill, who had absolutely NFI when it came to photography, but was quite happy to stand there and make up crap and sprout it as gospel to every unsuspecting potential camera buyer who walked his way.
Shame shame shame.
How is it that you can strike such polar opposites all within one 7 day period?

March 22, 2009

Shutters Inc – episode 119

Filed under: FE,Leica,M8,model release form,Nikon,Podcast,Shutters Inc — Bruce Williams @ 8:51

This week, Shelton talks about the first SLR he bought for his son, Nathan… a Nikon FE… for $40!
I asked Shelton what he knew about the Leica M8.
Shelton then talks about the issues for photographers shooting in public places, which led me to ask about model release forms.

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