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whoops, Nikon did it again...

Posted by Au Lim On Friday, August 29, 2008 1 comments
as most Nikon addicts have already gotten wind of since 12 am Aug 26 which was around early afternoon yesterday, Aug. 27 here in the Phil, the D90 was officially launched after months of speculation and rumors. not only does it have Live View, it also RECORDS video thus making it a "world's first". now this lucky guy, Chase Jarvis, is living THE life! not only is he a young, hot, successful commercial photographer (i read off his site that he is the youngest thus far to be named both Hasselblad Master and Nikon Master), he has been called upon by Nikon in Japan, no less, to secretly test their latest baby for the past few months (!), before everybody else knew it even existed. woooh! and this video just totally turns me on (Nikon porn!!!) i just have to have it embedded here on my blog too.

how cool is that! or maybe HOT is a better word for it. Chase Jarvis is NOW at the top of my photography demigods/idols list...

my target as my next camera body was the D300 after the D40 i have now. i thought i'd just keep my lowly D40 until i save enough for a more serious guns but i'm seriously rethinking it. i would actually love having that HDvideo-recording-ISO 3200 (6400 boosted)-12.3MP-CMOS sensored-EXPEED processing-baby even if it was geared for advanced amateurs! because, hey, i AM an amateur (not necessarily advanced though)! although the D300 is prosumer and might be a better buy if my amateur self finds out it really wants to be a pro eventually, as a scrapbooker, that video capability so speaks to me! i used to really love my old Sony digital handicam because i could *capture stills* from the videos i take with it and therefore choose (and even re-choose) to print photos to scrap from the video. it really like having the ability to replay time and decide to take the picture again if i ain't satisfied with what i have. those were actually low res but with a little bit of photoshopping, it suits my scrapbooking needs just fine. that's exactly what i did to the old scrapbook layout below (this was in 2005 so please pardon the handwriting, i didn't know any better :-P). so just imagine that with the D90's HD quality video capture! PLUS, i'm already thinking: video blogging (Cathy Zielske-eque!) fun!

of course captured stills from the D90 videos might not be the way to go to get serious photography stuff but that's what the rest of the magnificent, practically pro-comparable innards of the D90 is for. woooooh! 7 months to my next birthday. i should start working on hubby already if i am to get this baby. it's just as well because that hopefully gives enough time for the prices to settle a bit from the initial spike of a new product.

will be dreaming till then...both of the D90 and a Chase Jarvis lifestyle.

the pen is mightier than the mouse

Posted by Au Lim On Friday, August 22, 2008 0 comments
went to Virra Mall last night hunting for a new sofa set with hubby. partially, it was an excuse to check out a Wacom tablet that i have been lusting after for the past 2 weeks. i've been specially feeling this since after the Photo Summit because of the photos i want to post process.

i was on the fence between the small Bamboo Fun (3.5" by 6) and the bigger Genius M609 (6"by 9") ever since i read Mr. Jay Alonzo's review of it. so just as the stores were closing at Virra last night, i reached a still open store and was checking out the 609 when i glanced upon a smaller Genius box of the G-Pen 450 (4" by 5.5"). the price tag on it was P1800.00 and it was approximately the size of the P5600.00 Wacom Bamboo Fun. hmmm....enticing!!!

i chatted about it with the shopkeeper who actually looked familiar. when i glanced, at the signage, i realized i was at Abacus Computers which i had already heard before was owned by a fellow hobby photographer named Handy. it was not too long before we were already comparing notes of the just recent seminars we had both attended: the Photo Summit and the SPPP Nudes. so perhaps to help a fellow photog out in deciding, nice guy Handy told me to try out the small Genius for a few days and if i don't like it, that i am welcome to return it! now who could resist such a deal!

so i came home with the package and excitedly installed it even before i sat down to dinner. after the initial handling curve, i started messing with photos. i chose to play edit one i was going to trash because it was a bit softer than i would have liked. after, i was done with it though, i am totally considering keeping the little gizmo. the photo at the top of this review is the result while the one on the left is the original.

i am liking this little device and it is fast growing on me. since i don't do illustrations anyway and i haven't used a pen tablet for over a decade, i am not really missing anything in terms of actual use. the old (and expensive) Wacom i had years ago wouldn't even come close in term of sensitivity to this one. for that price too, it has 1024 levels of pressure sensitivity against the Bamboo's 512. it does have 29 programmable hotkeys BUT it would have been nice if it at least had a dedicated zoom and scroll button for more convenience. however, i did find a workaround--the keyboard's hotkeys for Photoshop and CorelDraw, where i would probably use this thingy the most, would just have to do for me if i were to keep this.

and of course, it doesn't look quite as handsome as the Wacom Bamboo Fun but it does seriously make me wonder if plunking down the extra P3,800.00 to get the good looks and the zoom/scroll buttons is worth it. besides, having a pen to manipulate in Photoshop is already a definite improvement over my customary editing with a bar of soap...err...mouse.

ok, one more night to think about it. i'll decide tomorrow. but the way things are right now, i think the Genius just might stay with me for more than a just short while.

photo summit '08 report

Posted by Au Lim On Tuesday, August 19, 2008 0 comments
Clay Blackmore shows the ropes

my body still aches from the 3 day event that just concluded yesterday but let me just sum it up in one word: SULIT! For P4K, this workshop with 2 renowned, seasoned photographers, Parish Konahim and Clay Blackmore was simply that: so worth it. i was expecting they would be there to facilitate a talk for maybe a few hours each but i was half surprised that they were BOTH there for the WHOLE 3 days--from the day-long photoshoot on the first day to the 2 days of indoor seminars.

to top it all, these masters of the craft are both stand-up people (i'm starting to think most photographers are!). they're so cool and funny especially Mr. Clay who had such high energy and enthusiasm for sharing his techniques. even Mr. Parish who seems to be a more reserved kind of person than Mr. Clay was cracking jokes with him. all through the 3 days, the mood was upbeat and it was often hilarious watching these 2 world class photographers taking pot shots at each other.

Mr. Parish styling the beautiful model

i think it was plus points for the organizers to think of combining such diverse talents as these 2 personalities. Mr. Parish, against whose name this event was marketed, is a well respected and highly talented fine art photographer and who has the creative, sensitive soul of a true artist. his work just speaks for itself. his talk was all about following one's passion and listening to one's heart over mind when it comes to our photography work. watching him style the models and use his creativity for us to have a beautiful shoot was the learning experience from him.

Clay posing the model, Masha:"body to the light..."

however, the sparkling gem in this event was Mr. Clay and his effusively delivered precise techniques for studio work. he shares his valuable years of experience working with Monte Zucker and his subsequent practice by himself . he drums to his audience repeatedly his techniques: basic pose and feminine pose, camera height vs. camera position, and full face, 2/3's & back 2/3's -- i can never forget those now...hahaha... but i think it IS the effective way to get it: by repetition and tons of examples and shoots. and so the stroke of genius on the part of the organizers were combining these 2 talents: one who shows the fine art aspect of photography, and another who shows the other side, commercial photography, because this is what will get the bills paid.

i don't know i will ever get to the end of processing all the shots i came away with on those 3 beautiful days of learning and interacting not only with my fellow photographers but also with those breathtakingly lovely models--the most beautiful i have had the chance to shoot thus far. see some samples below and here and tell me if i'm not speaking the truth! {also occasionally check out my daily photo blog posts for some of my most favorite and choicest photos from this event and at this Flickr folder for the eventual updates to the photos}

there were a just few snags in the whole bustle such as some late announcements that lunch will not be served but these were compensated with heavy snacks and a free Digital Photography magazine. i really wish though that the heavy snack was served as lunch instead because i can hardly eat them anymore by the time they were served being still full from lunch(which we had to get outside) and being still hyped from the photoshoots.

after 3 days of this event, i think my horizon in photography have been expanded and (i would like to think, at least) my skill leveled up. how can it not when these 2 mentors have worked hard even in this short time to pummel in my brain those lessons and show us by example how it is done? it now remains up to me to practice what they have preached to ensure that i do not forget. yup, the organizers, FPPF and DPP, were successful in putting it all together and they deserve a big KUDOS! if they line up these kinds of talents again from facilitators to models, then i'm sure to be there too next year. : new blog to celebrate 08.08.08

Posted by Au Lim On Friday, August 08, 2008 0 comments

yup...just set me a new one up. i think that Artful Blogging Challenge by just whetted my appetite for even more blogs. and as the title implies, it's for posting one photo a day. i'm hoping it would at least get me to process more from my growing photofolio or perhaps to just capture one and post immediately. whatever the case may be, it's designed to keep the photo fever alive in me. (haha! if my flickr and multiply are not enough...) i'm calling this blog [and some music to groove by], yes you guessed it, because it put in a playlist so it won't be too quiet when you visit... and also so i have music playing in the background when i don't have a radio.

and see, it's 08.08.08 (Aug. 8, 2008)... must do something to celebrate it right? i've had this space since December last year anyway when i visited CH's blog on Vox. might as well do something useful with it. and Vox has lots for cool theme skins too. i think i'm going to enjoy changing it often. my only gripe with the Vox skins is that they are not as customizable as Blogspot's...only the banner headers are changeable and when you do, you are stuck with a limited number of skins/themes. hopefully, they'll do something about this sometime soon.

so here's to more blogging fun... happy 08.08.08 day to all!

Photo Essay