Looking for the perfect lens for your scenics? Check out the options and see what some top OP pros have to say about their favorite choices.
At heart, the choice of lens for any photo is based on the photographer’s vision, on how he or she “sees” the subject and the final image. Wide-angle lenses take in a vast angle of view, and individual elements of the scene are relatively tiny. Telephotos zero in on a small, distant portion of the scene, compressing the elements, and individual elements are much larger in the image.
Every year, the photo industry assembles for the annual PMA Trade Show. This past March, the Las Vegas Convention Center was buzzing with manufacturers, distributors and photographers, all assembled to see the latest innovations and equipment to help photographers take better pictures and do more with them. There was a lot to see and learn about, and this special edition of In Focus offers a sampling of some of the impressive products from the show.
New options are making it easier and more fun for you to create your own photo book
Few things in life are more gratifying than seeing a photo that you’ve taken published in a book. Books have a sense of permanency that suggests that your pictures will last forever. Thanks to today’s modern online picture-book publishers, you can begin this process without leaving your desk. It’s easy and affordable, and the production quality is astounding.
Nature photographers now have six models from which to choose at widely varying prices. These cameras are about more than just a larger image sensor.
When we last looked at full-frame D-SLRs, there were four models. In the ensuing months, one of those was replaced, and two new ones were added, giving us six of these high-tech super-cameras today. As long as there have been D-SLRs, OP readers have been keenly interested in full-frame models. The early models were priced out of reach for the vast majority of us, but as technology marches forward, the costs of that technology consistently come down. Instead of two models listing at more than $6,000, prices today begin comfortably at less than half that amount.
Pentax is releasing its K2000 in a unique white version as a double-zoom kit. The entry-level model is aimed at those looking to move up from a compact camera to a D-SLR. The smc Pentax DA L 18-55mm ƒ/3.5-5.6 AL and 50-200mm ƒ/4-5.6 AL lenses that come in the kit also are white.
These specialized software plug-ins give you a lot of power in easy-to-use packages
Ask any group of photographers to name the most important plug-in, and you’re sure to start an argument. That’s because plug-ins have become an essential element of nearly every photographer’s creative process. They’re so diverse in their application—and so effective in their performance—that everyone has at least one favorite. And now that Apple has opened Aperture’s architecture to make use of its own plug-in version, newer and better products are serving an even wider audience.
If you like to get creative with your wildlife and nature photography, the Olympus E-30 is loaded with features for going beyond the straight shot. Six Art Effect Filters, including Soft Focus, Pop Art, Grainy Film, Pale & Light, Pin Hole and Light Tone, can be activated using the camera’s mode dial, and you can see their effects in real time on the Live View LCD. Like other Olympus D-SLRs, the E-30 incorporates sensor-shift image stabilization that works with all lenses.
Two new cameras bring HD video capability to the D-SLR and create a new way for nature photographers to see and share the world through imagery
For all of the power of a single frozen moment in time that a photograph represents, sometimes it’s just not enough. We’ve all lamented the still frame’s inability to adequately capture the motion within a scene. Wildlife photographers, in particular, like to have a compact digital video camera handy to record dramatic action in the field. These compact video cameras can fall short on image quality, but they’ve been the best option for a nature photographer who wants to have the motion, but doesn’t want to invest the time and resources into a professional video setup—until now. Two new D-SLRs, the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and the Nikon D90, have changed the playing field, and a new era is dawning.
Named for Ono no Komachi, a famous Japanese poet, Olympus delivers the limited-edition E-420 Komachi Kit, which includes the compact D-SLR and the ED 25mm ƒ/2.8 Zuiko Digital lens in a vintage-looking, handmade brown leather case.
There’s more to getting a good black-and-white image than just shooting in color and doing a conversion. In the field, take advantage of your camera’s settings and you can unleash its inner TRI-X!
There are two basic ways to produce black-and-white images digitally: Shoot them that way in-camera or shoot them in color and convert them to black-and-white using imaging software. Both offer advantages. Most of today’s D-SLRs provide a monochrome mode.
Cameras keep getting better, and the latest models to come out this fall are among the very best yet for nature photographers
It’s fall, and besides the annual leaf change and wildlife migrations, this is a time of year when manufacturers unveil their new D-SLR lineups. Some of these cameras are ready and available right now, some are coming soon, and others are only concepts, but all of them represent new leaps forward in technology that will help you make better photographs.
If you’re looking to boost the quality of your landscape and nature images by stepping up to an SLR, Pentax delivers a complete entry-level system with a camera body, lens, flash and an affordable price tag.