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Size does matter!
Posted By: Peter Nutkins, 09-17-2016, 07:53 AM


I was in London to go to hospital and on the way took a quick detour to Tower Bridge to take a snap. The 31mm focal length is interesting and gives an unusual field of view...so I picked my spot and headed over to take the shot.

Just in front of me were two rather large photographers, each with a DSLR with a MASSIVE lens stuck on the front. Not having eaten for 16 hours and experiencing a really bad headache I was not in the mood for a confrontation. I had made the decision to only take my tripod and camera bag for my stay over - nobody knows me in London so looking like a dishevelled old man was not a problem for me.

It soon became apparent that these two super professional photographers were in for a big set up. I decided to sit on the ground against the wall and watch the display these chaps were putting on. It is times like this that I am embarrassed to be around photographers. Everyone in the street restaurant were treated to the very detailed (and loud) discussion that took place between the two about focal length. Maybe I am doing something wrong - it never seems that big a deal to me.

Sipping from my water bottle, and trying to stay focussed, I noticed that the diners were intrigued by the theatre these two were putting on. I just had to wait until they had finished so I could take my snap. After 15 minutes I lost it. They had actually started taking pictures. Between each shot they did something to the front of their lenses and cooed over their display screens. When I realised that they were using self timer on 10 seconds and holding people back from walking past that I just had to leave.

I stood up, walked up to them and plonked my very heavy beaten up Manfrotto tripod next to theirs. I noticed that they had cheapo ones with lots of attachments. I smiled deep inside - having converted to Pentax I have become a 'what you need to take the image' kind of photographer. My camera bag contains two lenses, my K-1, a couple of filters, cheapo cable release, blu tak, elastic bands, cardboard, cloth and some water (plus on this occasion a change of underwear).

My tripod just has a screw thing on the top - no fancy plate, no spirit level (I do that in camera). It was pretty dark but the laugh as I took out the K-1 with my 31mm on the front was audible. Another smile...these chaps had no idea! With their monster zoom lenses and theatrics they were all about the kit. They had big bags with every piece of everything in....how thankful I am now that all my Canon kit was stolen - it made me re-evaluate what photography really is. I went Pentax and have not looked back.

If I had been feeling a bit less like I was having an out of body experience I would have talked to them about photography being about taking images not the size of your eqipment. Instead I put my 'little camera' on my tripod, attached the cable release and snapped off 4 shots, each between 20 and 30 seconds. While I was waiting for the shutter I smiled at them...they looked with pity on me...maybe they were thinking perhaps one day I would be able to have one of their great cameras.....no thanks!

I packed up and left. 3 minuets tops. No fuss. I did not need to stop anyone walking past. I am sure none of the diners even noticed me, if they did they would have been thinking "look, a tramp with a camera".

The next day, as I drifted off on the table, I was thinking that size really does matter. They may have had large glass.....I have a small gem. A Pentax one.

Last edited by Peter Nutkins; 09-17-2016 at 10:55 AM. Reason: spelling mystakes
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09-20-2016, 11:09 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by pakinjapan Quote
Very nice shot
Thank you!

09-22-2016, 05:44 AM   #17
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A beatiful shot and a very wise story behind it!
09-22-2016, 06:26 AM   #18
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OP, what was your post processing workflow on this pic?
09-22-2016, 09:19 AM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by pakinjapan Quote
Very nice shot
Thank you!

09-26-2016, 01:12 PM   #20
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Such loathing and condescension. An evil laugh would have fit right in as you strode up with your simple but obviously superior gear. I'm surprised they didn't toss their kits into the water.
09-26-2016, 09:47 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by pakinjapan Quote
Very nice shot
Thank you!

---------- Post added 26th Sep 2016 at 10:41 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Wolfeye Quote
Such loathing and condescension. An evil laugh would have fit right in as you strode up with your simple but obviously superior gear. I'm surprised they didn't toss their kits into the water.
Agreed! Trouble with these sort of people is that they cannot see anything other than their own superiority...sad really.

Have a great day!

---------- Post added 26th Sep 2016 at 10:42 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by dtruongvt Quote
googd.
i like
thank you
Thanks
09-26-2016, 10:50 PM - 1 Like   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fat Albert Quote
OP, what was your post processing workflow on this pic?
PP (from what I remember):
Normal routine:
- Lightroom play with the sliders to get the histogram nicely shaped like a bell.
- Add a little bit of clarity (+8 ish) and the same for saturation
- sharpen to about 50

On this occasion I did have a second image with slightly more blurred water that I painted in under the bridge in Photoshop (I had taken 4 shots with slightly different DoF)

I went into Color Efex Pro (free download) and added tone (it is one of the presets)

I noted that the sky had LOTS of noise (it seems to do this after Efex) so I went back to Photoshop and duplicated the image as a new layer then reduced noise in the sky. I added a mask just for the sky (using luminosity masks) and blended the two.....hey presto - image complete

Hope this makes sense!
09-27-2016, 06:03 PM   #23
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Love the story. Love the photo.

10-01-2016, 12:45 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by sealonsf Quote
Love the story. Love the photo.

Thank you!
10-01-2016, 01:24 AM   #25
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Good image and thanks for making me smile first thing this morning.
10-01-2016, 04:49 AM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kerrowdown Quote
Good image and thanks for making me smile first thing this morning.
Glad you like it, and even more glad I helped someone smile

Have a great day
12-17-2016, 04:22 AM   #27
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Excellent shot and story, not making my choice between 31mm and Sigma 35mm any easier!
12-17-2016, 08:52 AM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by edin_togger Quote
Excellent shot and story, not making my choice between 31mm and Sigma 35mm any easier!
Hi. I have found the 31mm really good. But I am beginning to wonder if a newer lens might be sharper. Plus the 31mm cost me a packet! It is light though.
12-17-2016, 11:40 AM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by Peter Nutkins Quote
each with a DSLR with a MASSIVE lens stuck on the front
Maybe I can join in with these Pros now that I've got my "HM The Queen".
12-18-2016, 02:03 AM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kerrowdown Quote
Maybe I can join in with these Pros now that I've got my "HM The Queen".

That lens has regal quality....
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