Stock Photo Gallery

Friday, October 29, 2010

First test of the 70-200VR I and Kenko 1.4 extender

I recently got myself a second hand 70-200VR I f2.8, the "old" version of this famed lens. Since I sold my 18-200 I was a bit lost on the long distance stuff and I needed to find a replacement. As soon as I could I went for a short test in a park near home, not far from sunset hor the light was not so strong and I had the chance to concentrate on what interestd me the most, the VR system. Being a used lens I just wanted to make sure it worked properly.

In the following images, not fancy, not nice, just plain ugly (but the subject was in the right place) you will be able to see the difference between the shots with th VR on and off, and those with the Kenko 1.4 converter. I took all these shots sitting on a bench to help me support the camera at 1/8 sec. The distance between me and the subject is always the same and the exposure too.

Nothing new, I know, just a reminder for those who are still confused when it comes to buy a new or used lens: VR or not VR?

Nikkor 70-200 without VR

Nikkor 70-200 with VR

Nikkor 70-200 with kenlo 1.4X and VR off

Nikkor 70-200 with Kenko 1.4X and VR on

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Using 2 Lastolite Ezybox Hotshoe's and a TriFlector

There are videos around who are good enough to explain how to work with certain tools, and show how effective they are. For the little strobes lovers the Lastolite EzyBox is a great light diffuser, that should be in our bag all the time. I use it a lot for my products stuff because is easy to set up, fast to use and delivers a great light. Here's Mark Cleghorn at work showing how to properly use it fo a double portrait session.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

A top ten Olive Oil

I have friends working on many different things, and I’m fascinated by the fact that some of them have developed qualities and skills to create something different. Among them my friend Vicky, pure Tuscan breed, wonderful woman and energetic person.

She lives in a beautiful farm on the Tuscan hills, her husband takes care of the day to day business with agriculture, hunting and livestock and she pulled up her chemistry skills to create something pretty unique and ultimately extremely valuable, olive oil. Not the regular greenish liquid we use day after day. She created something special, THE olive oil, winner of many different award and most likely than not, one of the 10 best olive oil available in this planet.

I love olive oil; I use it a lot and appreciate a good one, even though I’m not an expert. Before opening the half litre bottle that Vicky gave me, I took my time to shoot some photos of it, trying to figure out all the things I have learnt from the book Light science & Magic.

One SB800 went behind a white translucent plastic panel and the other on top of the bottle through a Lastolite 40” Umbrella box. Two white reflectors helped distributing the light evenly and in Lightroom I just whitened the white and added a bit of contrast and sharpening.

I finally tried the oil with some good friends at home. It gave life to a good Turbot and Tuna Carpaccio, but to get the pure taste we had to put it as it is on fresh bread…. Is not cheap stuff, as you can imagine, but is truly worth a try. You can find it here Fattoria di Monti, and by the way, is a magnificent place to stay if you want to visit Tuscany; they rent a very nice house.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Macro Photography, a .... sparkling idea from Bryan Peterson

That is, a sparkling idea, and is easy to understand why. Check this video from Bryan Peterson, who's books really opened up my mind as a photographer, and see what you can do with some very basic stuff.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

The Lamiglas Tropic Pro Evo TP5660 meets the Bluefins

In the Cantabric Sea things have been a bit hectic lately. Every two days I was receiving an e-mail or an sms with images or stories of large tunas hooked on popping or jigging tackle. Some of them didn't even got a chance to smell the boat's hull, breaking off with smoking runs, but few have been landed and they were well over 200lb. Is a tough deal because you're fishing in 3000ft of water, and pulling such beasts with that kind of tackle is a hell of a tug-of-war.

One large Bluefin in the 78" range (ext. 270lb) have been landed by a friend of mine on one of the new Lamiglas Tropic Pro EVO rods, the TP5660SJ. The guys started with an 18lb drag to increasinghly get o to 26lb, hard to handle both for the fishermen and the rod. It took the crew three hours to land the fish, and they had to pass the rod to withstand such pressure. I'm glad to see that the new series is being successfull, especially after the problems we had in the past with a couple of batches. The blank has been re-designed, or better say that layers of material have been put together in a different manner. The guides are the Fuji Alconite with chrome foot, new color for the blank too and a thin modern handle complete the make up.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Tokina AF100mm f2.8 AT-X Pro D Macro

Today I had a bit of fun with my new macro lens, the Tokina 100 f2.8 AT-X Pro D. It feels good in your hands, sturdy and with a professional finish, I like the lens hood too, looks pretty cool when mounted, I left it on all the time.

The lens is a joy to use, the autofocus system is ok, a tad slow but I mostly shot in manual while doing the extreme close ups. As usual, wide open is quite difficult to find the right focusing spot, especially if you are a dork like me and don’t use the tripod, but his is truly not an issue, is normal.

As far as Photozone concerns, probably among the most qualified sources on the internet for camera lens reviews, the resolution is excellent from wide open up to f11, it is ok at f16 and goes down dramatically due to diffraction at very small apertures. Today I used it between f2.8 and f14, and the out of focus area you get at f2.8 is very nice, in fact I’m very much looking forward to use this lens for my next portrait session.

Here’s few images of today’s session: being able to stay as close as 30cm from the subject with an effective 150mm lens can deliver pretty impressive close ups, you will tell me if you like the result

Friday, October 1, 2010

Already available the # 3 issue of

My friend Pepe Weigand already released the third issue of his on-line fly fishing and photo magazine Flymage

This month there's  a special guest  whom you might know :-)