Over on Luminous Landscape, a wonderful in-depth article on digital photography and mountain climbing by Alexandre Buisse has been posted. The discussion ranges from technical concerns to aesthetic decisions and everything in-between. The article is accompanied by a number of wonderful photographs from his recent trip to Peru. Be sure to check out his portfolio and blog. (Right now, since I don’t know the rules about posting other people’s photos, I can’t add any here, but I’d like to. If you know of a good resource about proper usage and crediting of images and content, please let me know!)
I’ve been thinking a lot about digital photography in the backcountry and hope to use my upcoming hike of the Long Trail, where I will follow the fall foliage southward, to begin to articulate my ideas from many hundreds of days shooting in the backcountry. (By “backcountry” I mean anyplace where there is no access to electricity. Usually these situations occur many days in a row.) Stay tuned!
All photographers get it, and for good reason. The sensors in today’s DSLR’s can pretty much outresolve most lenses on the market. In fact, the sensor in the D5000 is no worse than, and some may say better, than the top of Nikon’s DX lineup, the D300. What many users of the D300 know, but most likely users of the D5000 do not, is that that tube of plastic and glass attached to your camera makes all the difference.
Initially one may think the sharper the lens, the better. Sharpness may be of the utmost importance to a landscape photographer, however in many other applications, other factors may be more important. A list of these include, but certainly are not limited to: weight, maximum aperture, light falloff, focal range, bokeh, color rendition, contrast, minimum focus distance, ease of focusing, build quality, image stabilization, filter size, autofocus speed, autofocus accuracy, flare, chromatic aberrations and of course that hard to describe “rightness” of a lens.
It is true that although I love my trusty 18-200mm workhorse that accompanies me in the backcountry, I can instantly tell when I’m viewing a photo shot with one of my pro lenses, such as the 14-24mm. I could go on forever about this topic and people can get very animated over lenses. But where do you go when you want to make the first steps toward deciding if a lens meets your needs?
That’s a very good question, and although there are endless “reviews” out there, there are only a few that I feel are clear and consistent. Use these as a starting point and then read a FEW opinions online. Once you’ve made a decision, use your lens as soon as you get it and don’t be afraid to return it, or try out another copy.
And if any of you readers out there know of other sources of of good lens reviews, please let me know!
Yes Eli Burakian is…. Eli Burak! Surprise, surprise. To make a short story really short, I recently married in September and my wife and I combined our last names. I get to keep mine and she gets to keep the “-ian” suffix which often denotes Armenian descent.
But it’s also a new me because I’ve finally finished the new website! Well, not necessarily “finished” but it’s good enough to see the light of day I think. Especially, since it’s the only place to buy MY FIRST BOOK!!
That’s right, my book Moosilauke – Portrait of a Mountain will be hitting shelves…and hopefully coffee tables in a month! I’ve been pulling a number of all-nighters to get this done, so I’m going to have to keep this first post short.
Check out the site, and let me know what you think. (Buy a book or print! My wife will love you.) Although I’m not quite a “starving artist”, I probably would be if she didn’t get me to eat during these extended work vigils. Anyways, it’s time to pay back Visa for all the help they provided me with my self-publishing.
This blog will be updated often (I swear it this time!) so check on back. Thanks for taking the time to drop by!