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02-28-2011, 10:38 AM   #16
Junior Member

Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Geneva
Posts: 28
Original Poster

Thanks a lot for your very kind words!

I guess your message is a good excuse for me to somewhat go into details about my somewhat short and recent photography experience.

I bought my first DSLR, a Pentax K10D, in May or June 2007 a couple of months before going on a 8-month Honeymoon trip. The funny thing is that the idea to buy a good camera (ie. a DSLR) originated from my wife. She had wanted to buy one to get into photography. Ironically, she never really did so and I was the one to dig into it instead. I quickly fell in love with taking pictures of everything, reading about lenses, testing a lot and so on.
Funny how things eventually t urned out!
I spent an increasingly amount of time reading the forums and taking shots here and there.

As I wanted to be fully prepared for our honeymoon trip, I quickly bought 2 lenses to accomodate any situations (or so I believed): a Sigma 17-70 f/2.8-4.5 and a Sigma 70-300 f/4-5.6. My dad had some old Pentax gear and he gave me a SMC-A 50mm f/1.4 and a Kiron 105mm f/2.8.
At the time I didn't know how much the Kiron was sought after and how great it was.
Unfortunately only 2 and half months in our trip, we got robbed in Sydney, Australia. All of my gear was gone, except a little (but great) P&S Finepix F31d which I used for the rest of the trip

When back from our trip, I decided to buy a Pentax K10 again along a DA* 16-50 and a FA 50 /1.4. I was really interested in the weather seals as well as 16mm. Also I had fell in love with shallow DOF and the FA 50 was a perfect portrait lens.

Along the way I eventually switched to a K20 and bought more lenses: DA 55-300 f/4-5.6, DA 12-24 f/4, FA 35 f/2 and DA 15 ltd f/4... LBA hit me really hard! (maybe I should see someone... ahah)
Anyway, I recently switched to a K5, back in mid-december. Since we decided to go on a, perhaps life-time safari in Africa, I wanted to maximize my chances of good shots. I figured a K5 was the ideal candidate with its clean high ISO and faster AF.

Regarding your questions about what lens was used.
All shots taken between 2007 and 2008 were taken with a K10. Regarding the lens I think most of the shots were taken with a Sigma 17-70. The macro ones were taken with the Kiron 105mm f/2.8 (except the fern ones taken with the Sigma). All shots from New Zealand were taken with the Sigma 17-70, except the Penguin where the Sigma 70-300 was used.

Actually, let me be a bit more accurate.

In the "All in the details" gallery:
  • The 2 droplets photos: Kiron 105mm f/2.8 macro
  • bee, stack of rocks, water lily, spider, dandelion, petal droplets, leaf : Pentax 100mm f/2.8 macro
  • baby fern, fern, trucks: Sigma 17-70 f/2.8-4.5
  • dragonfly: Sigma 70-300 f/4-5.6
  • baby feet: DA 16-50 f/2.8
  • fishnet: SMC FA 50mm f/1.4

In the "Candid" gallery, all taken with a DA 55-300, except the Venice beach one with a Sigma 17-70.

For the "Wildlife" gallery pretty much everything was shot with a DA 55-300 except the penguin which was taken with a Sigma 70-300.

The "Nature" gallery is mostly Sigma 17-70 (bamboo, NZ & Maui ones) and DA 12-24 (Antelope & Zion) with one DA 55-300 (beams of light) and DA* 16-50 (cow).

For the "Waterscapes", it's quite a mixture:
  • All New Zealand ones were taken with the Sigma 17-70
  • The Zanzibar ones were with the DA12-24 (big beach) and Sigma 17-70 (the rest)
  • Swans: Sigma 17-70
  • Sunset from the boat: Sigma 17-70
  • DA 15mm ltd for the reflexion (river with forest and port at sunset)
  • My wife kneeling in the water: Fujifilm F31d! (oh the intruder..
  • Hut and woman going in the water (my wife again): FA 50 f/1.4
  • River with snow: DA* 16-50
  • Mountains reflexion: Sigma 10-20

  • Snow ones, glacier: DA* 16-50
  • Desert, volcano, lighthouse, vineyards: Sigma 17-70
  • Zion, Olduvai Gorge, river bed, yellow flowers: DA 12-24
  • Everything else: DA 55-300

Ugh, that's quite a long message with lots of details!

After having used all these different lenses (some of them were borrowed from my dad), I realized how good the Sigma 17-70 in real life. A good copy is really good. Maybe I'm lucky with the sample I have, but I find it extremely good and versatile (the macro ability is awesome).
I just wish it was weather sealed because it sucks dust at an incredible rate

The DA 12-24 is also amazingly sharp, by far the sharpest zoom I've used.

The DA 55-300 is very good for the price although I have to use pretty high shutter speeds to have sharp images despite in-body SR.

The DA 15 is fantastic and a joy to use. Also, its flare resistance is simply amazing!

I'm very unimpressed by the DA* 16-50, but maybe my copy isn't great (although I sent it to Pentax and they said it is within specs). The focus is rather unreliable and it doesn't focus well on anything that is not very contrasty. I still have it, but never use it anymore, especially after buying the Sigma 17-70 again (that I had stolen in 2007).

Nowadays, from using the DA 15 and enjoying it a lot, I'm thinking of going more into primes, especially the DA 70 or FA 77... Also, a 60-250 would be very nice especially given it's weather sealed.

Are you from the Yucatan?
I would love to visit the Yucatan, that would definitely be awesome! I've never been there, but I'm sure I'll visit it at some point... it's so beautiful. Plus the Mayas have left such an amazing architecture and culture that one has to experience it at least once in their life.

Thanks again and don't hesitate if you have other questions

02-28-2011, 10:59 AM   #17

Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Alberta
Posts: 218
QuoteOriginally posted by thxbb12 Quote

Thanks you a lot for your feedback. Coming from a pro with 50 years of experience it is an honor, really
I've been impressed with Pentax since I bought my first DSLR, a Pentax K10D. As you, I see many people complaining about this or that, but in the end, I found it's all about knowing well the camera and being used to it. It's all about practicing and practicing, with many trails and errors.

Anyway, thanks a bunch for your feedback!
#AAA1 to that.
03-01-2011, 08:54 AM   #18
Junior Member

Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Geneva
Posts: 28
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by psychdoc Quote
again, as i said in the original post-you take great pictures. But you asked for criticism!! If it was not constructive i apologize.
No worries and no offense taken
I asked for criticism and I was ready to take anything people had to say otherwise I wouldn't have asked for it in the first place.
The reason I asked you about which photos you had in mind in particular is because it's never been my intention to shoot poverty in itself (and I don't think these photos show poverty in itself).

QuoteOriginally posted by psychdoc Quote
i was not trying to specifically note that the word ‘rich’ and swiss go together- if your location had said london, i would have said to consider including some rich british people too.

having lived in a 'third-world' country for many years before coming to the u.s, i always found it disconcerting to see 'candid' photos of the relatively poorer class of people.

whenever i see photographers shoot candids [excluding paparzzi] it is not of the wealthier class. We don’t see very many candids of rich people standing around do you?
I apologize for having misinterpreted you then. I believed you were specifically targeting Swiss people for automatically being rich in your statement.
However, I think there are quite a few candid from "ordinary" people out there in the forums, more than poor people in fact (or so it seems to me). Rich people are another issue altogether, and to me "rich" people fall in the category of stars which are targeted by paparazzi. This latter group is definitely the least represented (probably because it's most difficult to find stars, let alone shoot them).

QuoteOriginally posted by psychdoc Quote
again, this is relatively minor. Everybody has their pet peeves. This was the only thing i found that i would have done different. Otherwise keep doing what you are doing. You are talented.
I can understand where you are coming from and how it can be irritating from your point of view.

No offense taken and thanks for your comments.
03-01-2011, 02:57 PM   #19
New Member

Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Hungary
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 20
not badí even very good pic. i like elephant's photos! good luck


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