11 April 2012

Product Photography – Alpaca Yarn

My friend, Annette Browning, raises alpacas and harvests and dyes their wool at her Kentucky Blue Fiber Company I shot these photos of her product. Alpaca works just like wool but people who are allergic to wool can wear clothing made with alpaca. Click on the photos for a larger view.

Kentucky Blue 1

Kentucky Blue 2

Kentucky Blue 3

Kentucky Blue 4

Kentucky Blue 5

Kentucky Blue 6

Kentucky Blue 7

Kentucky Blue 9

Product Photography – Alpaca YarnSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

07 April 2012

Testing the AF-S DX Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G Lens

I bought this lens for a specific purpose: I wanted a prime that would give me the low light performance, bokeh, and sharpness on the Nikon D7000 that I always enjoyed with the Nikkor AI 50mm f/1.8 on the old Nikon F3. The D7000 uses an APS-C “cropped sensor” so a 35mm on the D7000 (or other Nikon cameras with this sensor size like the D70, D90, D3100 and D5100, etc.) acts like a 52mm on a “full frame” or 35mm film camera like the F3. This lens is also fairly economical a $230 USD. Overall, I am quite pleased with the lens, especially at this price. However, it is not perfect. To my eye, it is a bit contrasty; the autofocus is not the fastest in the world, and the lens suffers from some chromatic aberration in some circumstances. All photos shot on the Nikon D7000. Here are some pictures with commentary: (click on the photos for a larger view)

ISO 200 1/320 sec at f/9.0


1:1 of the shot above


Shooting in Aperture Priority mode ISO 200 1/8000 at f/1.8 Notice the extremely short depth of field


Shooting in Program Mode 1/320 sec at f/9.0



This was probably the toughest of the shots in terms of lighting. The evening sun was coming in almost horizontally from the left through the flower petals. I had to do the most post-processing on this shot to recover color and texture in the delicate flower petals. I also got the most chromatic aberration of any of the shots along the uppermost petal top edge. I applied lens profile correction in LightRoom and that did away with most of the aberration. Even at f/5.0 the bokeh is quite decent. ISO 400 1/100 sec at f/5.0


Wall art in shadow, no direct sunlight. The texture in this one is wonderful. ISO 400 1/200 sec at f/7.1


More wall art, ISO 400 1/160 at f/6.3 (Program Mode)


This one is notable because it has no real correction. I cropped it just a bit, but aside from that it is straight out of the camera, ISO 400 1/640 sec at f/13


Mimosa Cafe ISO 400 1/100 sec at f/5.0 Nice depth of field, great color


Bokeh testing: Aperture Priority ISO 400 1/200 sec at f/1.8 Focal point was the forward lip of the mug.


Bokeh testing: Program Mode, same focal point ISO 400 1/50 sec at f/3.5


Focus testing ISO 400 1/160 sec at f/6.3


Detail of the photo above


Orange ‘68 VW Bug, just because I like it. I added some “recovery” in Lightroom to counteract the glare. ISO 400 1/40 sec at f/3.2 (Program Mode – I should have shot this one in Manual due to the fading light)


New Lens

Testing the AF-S DX Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G LensSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

02 April 2012

Louisville Bats Pre-Season Warm Up at Slugger Field, April 2, 2012

This wasn’t a game, just an opportunity for the “VIP’s” to see the new Bats roster practicing prior to the season open. There weren’t many people down at Slugger Field, in part because the NCAA basketball championship game is also tonight, the University of Kentucky will face Kansas University, UK vs. KU, hmmm. Anyway, I don’t care that much about basketball, and this was the first opportunity of the year to be down at Slugger Field to be serenaded by the crack of ash wood on horsehide.

The Louisville Bats are the AAA affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds. There is an undertone of tragedy with AAA ball, in that only a few want to be there. Most are either being groomed for the major leagues or they are in the twilight of their careers and are on their way out. Some have had a shot in the major leagues, and perhaps have not done as well as was expected, and have been “sent down” to AAA to re-tool and heal for another shot at the big show. AAA players always seem to be “just passing through.” This was virtually a new team to me. There were a few guys there who played last season, but most of them were strangers. A bunch came up from the AA Carolina Mudcats, because the Reds moved the Mudcats’ manger, Rick Bell, to be the new Bats managers and he appears to have brought a bunch of his favorites with him.

Anyway, here are the pix. Click on the photos for a larger view:














Louisville Bats Pre-Season Warm Up at Slugger Field, April 2, 2012SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend
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