Black and White Photography Tutorials Words

Black & White Recipes

Here’s a long list of channel mixer settings to emulate various black & white films. I used the high contrast setting for the photo below but the different types of film create interesting effects.

It’s worth checking them out, but don’t get hung up on them – one setting will suit one particular type of shot while another will suit others.

Birds Black and White Blarney Canon 20D Canon 75-300 Cork Ireland

Bird Feeding

Abstract Cork People Urban



Get your camera books here!

Ted Leung offers advice on what camera books to buy. I’ve read two of them, both books by Bryan Peterson:

I have to echo Ted’s sentiments. “Understanding Exposure” was an eye opener for me, but “Learning to see Creatively” taught me that lying down on the job can get some interesting shots! He recommends a few other books too which I may look into.

What photography books do you recommend?


Canon 5D Gotcha?

Michael Tapes has found what could be a major problem for advanced users of the new Canon 5D. It has a “custom settings” function that records a set of parameters such as aperture and EV so they’re available with the flick of a switch.
The problem occurs when you’re shooting in custom mode but change the settings. The new settings aren’t saved unless you explicitly tell the camera to, but if your camera powers off because of power saving (that’s quite possible, it turns on almost instantly, you’d hardly notice!) your settings will revert to the custom setting again.
I think it could be something that photographers will get used to. This “bug” will either discourage them from changing settings in custom mode, or discourage use of custom mode altogether!
How to fix it? While in Custom settings mode:

  • Don’t let users change settings.
  • Save any changed settings.
  • As soon as a user changes settings exit custom settings mode.

I think exiting custom settings mode is probably the safest way of resolving this. What do you think?
More on this “flaw” on the forum where actual users of the 5D got a chance to air their grievences with Luminous Landscape or Canon! 🙂


Why DSLRs trump Digicams

Or to put it more clearly, why entry level digital SLRs are better than their similarly priced competition in the bridge camera range.
As usual, Paul writes very well on a topic that will probably have many people juggling with choices this Christmas: buy a DSLR or an SLR look-a-like digital camera.
I have to say, I think I have the best of both worlds, in my Panasonic FZ5 I have a small camera that fits neatly into one hand, can be sneaked into concerts, is light enough that I can bring it everywhere and is perfect for taking photos for web publication. My Canon 20D is a bigger beast but nonetheless is never at home but rarely goes into a pub or anywhere dangerous! (Well, almost never!)

Go read his article if you’re contemplating a purchase.

Cork Nature Night

The Lough Lights

Cars and buses light up the road as they pass by The Lough

Cork Urban

Mc Curtain Street


Canon EOS 20D Lens Advice

Darren lists the lenses he uses on his Canon 20D. I’m very tempted by the 50mm f/1.8 as it has got some great reviews and is relatively cheap. Unfortunately with the 1.6 multiplier of the reduced size sensor in the 20D you’re left with the coverage of an equivalent 80mm lens. Maybe I should lock my lens at 50mm and shoot with that for a day to get the feel for that size.
What lenses do I own? Nothing outstanding, yet. Only consumer grade lenses so far:

  • Canon 18-55 kit lens. Perfectly usable, lovely and light.
  • Canon 75-300mm IS. Hell of a zoom at a good price. Tends to hunt when zoomed in, but manual focus fixes that.
  • Sigma 18-200mm. Great general purpose zoom lens. I miss the image stabilizer of the 75-300mm especially as it’s quite slow at f3.5-f6.3.

* Slow here means that the lens doesn’t let in much light when zoomed fully, which in turn means that you need to take a longer exposure, resulting in shaky photos. The only way to alleviate this is by using a tripod, or increasing the ISO sensitivity of the sensor, but that causes noise.
Here’s a simple rule: always be sure that the exposure time is is 1/zoom seconds.
ie. If you have zoomed to 200mm then your exposure time should be at least 1/200 sec.


some bottle

Inspiration comes from odd sources. This is a used bottle of olive oil from the kitchen I snapped a few days ago.

Web mags

Digital Journalist October 2005

A new issue of Digital Journalist is out! I haven’t had a look at it yet but later, oh yes, later! I’m sure it’ll be a great read, as always!

Links Photography Words

Fade-in Photos

Photojenic has a nice fade in effect I’ve seen elsewhere. Would that be very annoying if all the images on this page faded in? I think it possibly would but wouldn’t it be cool? 😉