This journal documents my experiences with a Canon 50D, my first DSLR camera, purchased on Oct. 16, 2008. The camera was end-of-lined by Canon in July 2010 and the 60D was announced.

Interactive iPad Book/App on Photography

ipad technique

Mon Nov 01 21:27:32 2010

Bob Davis and Inkling have an interactive iPad book/app about photography.

I am holding off buying it because of the imminent new iOS release which usually stops certain apps from working due to incompatibilities.

Friday Foto: Allium (Flowering Onion)


Sat Nov 06 04:36:01 2010

From Friday Foto

Practicing Exposure: Victoria & Dundas at Night

photo technique

Sun Nov 07 11:13:30 2010

From Friday Foto: Downtown

I recently began practicing night shooting with the 24mm/1.4L. I switched to Spot Metering and exposed for the sky (by pointing the camera at the sky, locking the exposure using "*", then recomposing and shooting). This technique gives brighter-than-normal night scenes and blows the hilights. If there aren't many bright objects in the scene, it looks great, but it doesn't work as well for photos like the one above.

So, I decided I needed a more "neutral" place to point the camera and meter...

Friday Foto: Dundas Square Street Performer


Fri Nov 12 22:28:25 2010


Dundas Square is one collosal advertisement and I find the ads overwhelming. By overexposing the shot, I blew the hilights and anonymized them so now you can concentrate on the other things going on in the scene.

My next experiment was to test the 24mm/1.4L for sharpness at low f-stops (with reasonable ISO) while hand-holding the camera without support. Luckily there was a street performer entertaining the crowd and I was able to take some sharp photographs while holding the camera over my head. As you can see from the smiles on the people's faces, he was very good.

I set the aperture that allowed me a shutter speed of 1/30s or better, which is the minimum hand-holding shutter speed for my girly, nerdy arms. I also timed the photos to whenever the large TV screen above Futureshop displayed an image that illuminated the square brightly. This maximized the illumination and kept the ISO noise at a minimum.

Friday Foto: Fall Leaves in a Pond


Fri Nov 19 12:23:56 2010

From Friday Foto

There was a significannt amount of Spot-Healing I had to perform on this image to erase the dust particles floating on the water. I am still debating whether to remove the reflections in the top-right corner because they are distracting.

My favourite aspect of this photo is the monochromatic colour palette.

BBC: "Genius of Photography"

techinique art

Sat Nov 20 22:27:27 2010

"Genius of Photography" is a six-part BBC TV show which explores famous photographs. The episodes are available on YouTube.

The first episode compresses a century of photography into an hour. It moved a bit too quickly for my tastes, given that photography is a leisurely "sport".

Update Tue Nov 23 21:53: Episode 2 covers the 1920s and 1930s— Atget, Manray, Walker Evans. What I enjoyed most is seeing photographs which were new to me.

Update Wed Nov 24 07:49: The show gets interesting by episode 3 covering the 1940s which features HCB, Ross (who documented life in the Polish ghetto) and compares the war photographers Capa and Vaccaro (an American soldier who had to contend with Army censors destroying his negatives, which were developed in soldier's helmets in the battlefield).

Update Sat Nov 27 22:41: Episode 4 covers post-war photography including The Family of Man photographic exhibition by LIFE magazine, Robert Frank's "The Americans", street photography, the advent of colour film, William Eggelston.

F&V Z96 LED Light


Tue Nov 23 18:22:58 2010

The F&V Z96 LED Lighting Array is a compact and versatile portable lighting system for photo and video shoots.

Friday Foto: Lamb's Ear


Fri Nov 26 10:15:29 2010

From Friday Foto

24mm at f/1.4. I debated whether to digitally remove the speck of pollen on one of the leaves but I decided to leave it.

luis fernandes / / Nov 2010 Canon 50D Journal