Photography Roundup - 6/24

Summary of photo news, the latest contests, and more

By K David in Columns on Jun 24, 2015


Winter Solstice Sunset | AussieTrev

Whether you're experiencing the winter or the summer solstice right now, it's a great month to get out and take a lot of photos. This time of year, regardless of your location, is ideal for stunning landscape, nature, architecture, and sports photography. So check out some of the great deals we've found, lay back on the beach or by a fireplace with some of our great reads, and enjoy the photo content we've put together for you this week.

Featured Deals

June's abundance of deals mirrors the abundance of rain, heat, and sunburns that accompany this month. One thing's for sure, though, where the sun might burn you, these prices won't!

Pentax Forums Roundup


Flame Art | dick897

Official Monthly Contest #105: Serenity Voting

Official Monthly Photo Contest #105: Serenity is in the voting phase. Get your votes in quickly because the winners will be announced later today!

Official Monthly Contest #106: Converging Lines


Converging Lines Theme Image | Ole

You only have a few days to submit your photo for the June Official Monthly Photo Contest. This month's theme is Converging Lines. So find an image that could be used in an Art 101 book in the chapter on perspective and see how your submission fares!

Flame Art by dick897

Life Cycle | dick897

If you've avoided the Post your Photos and Photo Critique sub-forums lately, then you've also missed an absolutely stunning series of photos from user dick897. Derek Ryan has been sharing incredible works of flame art. You can see some of them here and some others here.

Gear News


Ricoh GRII

Good Reads

We have a hodgepodge of interesting reads this week. Here are some links to resources and tips for improving your photography or finding new work to appreciate.

Pentax K-S2 Landscape with Retro Filter | K David

Interesting Kickstarter

In this new segment we'll look at an interesting Kickstarter project. Kickstarter is a hive for new and cutting-edge photography projects. We won't be endorsing the projects we share but are instead sharing them as a way to help users keep abreast of cutting-edge, independent, and entrepreneurial photographic thinking.

In this first installment, we look at Gekkopod. A fun, portable tripod, it's like a GorillaPod but much more packable. This is intended for packaging and taking anywhere. It looks like a fairly light-duty tripod, so it won't be suitable for your DSLR, but it might work well for your WG-1, Ricoh GR and GRII, or Optio.

Featured Online Photography Resource 

Last week we looked a pinhole photography: lens-less photography that works best at apertures around f/165. On the other end of that spectrum are gonzo-fast single-element lenses. Finding single-element lenses as fast as f/1.1 is not impossible, but typically they max out at around f/2. Longer focal lengths are significantly faster than we typically see on complex lenses. One of my single-element lenses is a 300mm f/2.3. My fastest is a 70mm f/1.0. The results are varied depending on the lens. DIY Photography has a great article on single-element lenses.

Here are two examples of photos I've taken with single-element lenses. They range from surprisingly sharp (with a bi-convex lens) to fantastically pictorialist with a deep-cup meniscus lens.

Biconvex Single-element Lens Photo | K David

Deep-cup Meniscus Lens Sample Photo | K David

So the results can vary wildly. One thing is for certain: if you decide to experiment with home-made lenses, you'll have interesting results. It's also a safe bet that you'll have a lot of fun.

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