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02-26-2011, 09:09 AM   #76
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That post from Greenland is basically an article.

02-26-2011, 09:24 AM   #77
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Yes, very nice post indeed, and great photos - thanks!

So last night I got a K7 (from here) - I was planning on getting the K5, but I just couldn't quite justify $1,300 + 13% tax. And I got the K7 for $650 total! I would love the K5's new sensor, but the K7 is still an upgrade from my K20D, with the added bonus of not being broken.

I talked to B&H about the Tamron, and it sounds like it won't be covered under warranty, but I'll just have to talk to Tamron directly anyway. So I emailed Tamron, awaiting reply now. I hope fixing it wouldn't cost TOO much... if it does maybe I'll get my brother to try to fix it instead (he's good at these sort of things). In any case, if I can get it fixed, then I think the DA21 is what I should get to supplement it (I was already leaning that way, and Duplo pushed me over the edge).
02-26-2011, 11:39 AM   #78
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What type of trip will you be making?

QuoteOriginally posted by Duplo Quote
Well there is a lot to be said about landscape photography and the lenses to go with it.
...

The lenses that stands out to me is the DA21 and FA43 though, they are without a doubt my most used lenses for landscapes.
Duplo's (Thomas) response and example photos are the best I have seen.

HOWEVER, there's an aspect of your trip across Canada that you might think about. I will explain by giving an example of my trips…
I make “photo” trips. I use a backpack to carry my photo equipment, water, snacks, and a jacket. I carry a tripod. I hike to “photo opportunity” places and wait for the right “light”. I could spend hours and/or days on one area. I use prime lenses most of the time.
I make “snapshot” photo trips when I bring my 6-year old daughter along with me. (There is NO WAY she will sit and wait for the right “light”, LOL. Plus, hiking means I will have to carry her for some part of the hike.)
We frequent the Monterey Bay Aquarium and the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park. Taking the time to change a lens, no matter how quickly this can be done, would mean losing track of where she goes. A zoom lens is imperative for me when my daughter is with me.

On your trip across Canada, are you going to stop and wait for the right “light” or will this be more of a snapshot trip?
RayGunn
02-26-2011, 02:48 PM   #79
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These are both shot at 10mm with the fisheye:






02-26-2011, 02:54 PM   #80
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It'll be more of a snapshot trip; we won't be in a huge hurry, but I think we'll have to line up where we're staying overnight along the way, and won't have TOO much extra time to stop for pictures. I'll certainly have time for lens switching and tripods, but not time to sit around and wait.

Mike, those are awesome, and make me think I have no idea what fisheye means! I thought it meant really distorted, like an eye hole in a door... But those look amazingly like they could've been shot at 50mm!
02-26-2011, 03:01 PM   #81
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QuoteOriginally posted by crimson_penguin Quote
It'll be more of a snapshot trip; we won't be in a huge hurry, but I think we'll have to line up where we're staying overnight along the way, and won't have TOO much extra time to stop for pictures. I'll certainly have time for lens switching and tripods, but not time to sit around and wait.

Mike, those are awesome, and make me think I have no idea what fisheye means! I thought it meant really distorted, like an eye hole in a door... But those look amazingly like they could've been shot at 50mm!
thanks. They are actually very distorted but with fisheye, if you place the horizon in the center, it stays fairly straight. In the absence of vertical lines, you cannot really tell that this is almost 180 degrees(diag) of view.
In the #2 photo, that curved water's edge in the bottom of the photo was nearly a straight line, to give you an idea.
02-26-2011, 03:20 PM   #82
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That's interesting. And in #2 I could see it, but in #1, what about the person in the upper right? Why isn't she distorted?
02-26-2011, 03:29 PM   #83
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here's the view from atop the cliff looking down, this time with the horizon away from the center...more of what you expect from a fisheye.





in that #2 above, she is stretched wide quite a bit. she is standing at more like a 45 degree angle but looks kinda wide here...dont tell my wife i said that about her, lol.

02-26-2011, 07:05 PM   #84
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Thanks guys.

QuoteOriginally posted by mikeSF Quote
great post!!
Thank you Mike.
And while we are at it, that second fisheye landscape is among the best I have ever seen from it.
So allow me to return the compliments.

QuoteOriginally posted by Ron Kruger Quote
Yes, Thomas. That was a good post with good illustrations to back it up.
Most of my favorite scenic shots are at 15mm, but some are at 100mm too.
Thank you Ron.

The 15mm sounds like a winner by all accounts.

QuoteOriginally posted by GeneV Quote
That post from Greenland is basically an article.
Thank you Gene, it is partly true, I have been working on an article on the subject, guess some of that carried over in my reply.

QuoteOriginally posted by crimson_penguin Quote
Yes, very nice post indeed, and great photos - thanks!
Snip

Then I think the DA21 is what I should get to supplement it (I was already leaning that way, and Duplo pushed me over the edge).
Thank you.

A very nice choice of lens IMHO

QuoteOriginally posted by RayGunn Quote
Duplo's (Thomas) response and example photos are the best I have seen.
Thank you Ray.
02-26-2011, 07:11 PM   #85
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As others have written and vividly illustrated, just about any lens can be used for landscapes. It certainly depends on your perspective on the view that you are after. I have the 12-24 and 10-17FE that complement each other very well (especially in terms of field of view - when its expressed in degrees I find it much more meaningful that Xmm wide).

I was also fortunate in acquiring a FA 31 Ltd - its a long story on how it came my way, but it certainly has changed the way I look a landscape. Its a longer lens, exceptionally sharp, wonderful color and contrast. Obviously, it holds its own very well, and it stitches wonderful panoramas. That said, some panoramas are stitched way too wide - cut down, they can become much more dramatic and interesting. I have found that at times the 12-24 is toooo wide, however others hold the view that the new Sigma 8-16 is still not wide enough. It all depends on you the landscape that is rolled out in front of you.

There is an other perspective that can be worked - the camera's sensor. At 14MP, there is more than enough real estate there for heavy cropping. 100mm or even 300mm can become effective landscape lenses for views that can only be found off in the distance. Wide angle lenses do tend to push out the views in order to pull the edges in. I have seen various views that can only be found from distant vantage points, thus your telephoto lenses become the landscape lens of choice, especially if you crop the top and bottom. Here are a couple of similar views - essentially 50mm shots and these are only 1/4 of the frame (cropped off a lot of the sky and foreground).
Attached Images
 
02-27-2011, 05:22 PM   #86
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So I still plan on getting the DA21 before I go, but... I was about to get one, when I realized I'd kind of spent all my money (because I haven't actually got the money I mentioned in my original post quite yet). So I'll have to wait a bit. What happened was I looked at my bank accounts and calculated up how much money I had, after buying the K7, but didn't realize the K7 wasn't included in the balance yet, so then I went and spent another $700 on a DA* 50-135.

It is kind of perfect; I'll finally have both a DA* and a Limited lens, which has kind of been my goal. From what I've read, the 50-135 is one of the best DA* lenses, and isn't prone to SDM failure. And the DA21 is good, relatively cheap, and I think the right focal length for me. Hopefully I can also get the 28-75mm fixed...
08-31-2011, 02:35 PM   #87
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Best lenses for Landscape Photography?

There really isn't a pat answer for this, but my extensive experience with view cameras and Ansel Adams type subject matter may be helpful. I will agree that the majority of landscape photos you see are in the range of a "standard" zoom such as 16-45 or 17-50. Adam's "Moonrise over Hernandez" was taken with the equivalent of a 35-40mm lens on a Pentax DSLR. It is certainly true that you can make some extremely dramatic photographs with super wide lenses as well as long telephotos. My advice is to use the lenses you have and find their limitations first. If you have already found that you wish for a wider view, then go that direction in your lens purchase. I personally find it a great help to simplify my compositions in which case medium to long lenses seem to work best. There is a reason the classic lens kit for 35mm film goes 35, 50, 90, 135, 200. For a Pentax DSLR that would more or less be 24, 35, 70, 90, 135. You should be able to do 90% of your photography with that range of focal lengths. Wider and longer lenses can produce wonderful results when used properly, but in my opinion are harder to use well.

My other important landscape tip is to put your camera on a good tripod. It reduces or eliminates camera shake and, just as important, slows you down. This results in more more carefully composed photographs. Again, unless you are photographing moving subjects such as kids, sports or candids, 90% of your photographs can be done on a tripod, and probably done better. Landscapes don't move.
08-31-2011, 03:17 PM   #88
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QuoteOriginally posted by jeverettfine Quote
Landscapes don't move.
Except in seismically-active areas.

Yes, tripods are often mandatory, EXCEPT... I stand 6'4" / 76in / 1.9m tall. My eyeballs are at 72in / 1.8m. Decent tripods that extend that far are rare and costly, and I hate stooping and squatting. So for many 'scapes, I like to find a tree or wall or cliff etc to lean against and brace the camera. I should maybe get a collapsible folding ladder and a sandbag, eh?
08-31-2011, 03:30 PM   #89
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Regarding Tripods, I use an old Chicago Majestic Tripod with a geared head. I think it was manufactured in the 70's and they are still made outside of Chicago.

The tripod extends very high and is rock solid, it was made for medium to large format and can be found used for about $100 (tripod and head).

While somewhat heavy, I have managed a short hike with it to get this photo of a mountain stream.

09-02-2011, 07:28 AM   #90
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
Except in seismically-active areas.

Yes, tripods are often mandatory, EXCEPT... I stand 6'4" / 76in / 1.9m tall. My eyeballs are at 72in / 1.8m. Decent tripods that extend that far are rare and costly, and I hate stooping and squatting. So for many 'scapes, I like to find a tree or wall or cliff etc to lean against and brace the camera. I should maybe get a collapsible folding ladder and a sandbag, eh?
I am fairly tall (6'1") and I understand the stooping thing. However, it is amazing how you photos can improve if you get away from an eye level point of view.

The Manfrotto/Bogen model 3035 with the 3047 head has been my large format workhorse for many years. Not too expensive, but a bit heavy. I have a couple of Gitzos as well, a Studex and a Reporter (much more expensive though can be found used on ebay at very large discounts).

One big mistake is people buying a cheap tripod which can be worse than hand-holding especially if there is a wind. A really good tripod will probably cost as much or more than a camera body.

One really neat portable low-light capable set up is to get a Leitz table top tripod with a Large Ball head. You can configure it so that the tripod rests on your chest with the camera at your eye. I can take acceptably sharp pix at more than 1 second shutterspeeds plus it is quick and mobile. You can also press the set-up against a pole, tree or wall or on top of a wall or boulder etc.
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