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Alan7140 last won the day on 16 January

Alan7140 had the most liked content!


4,001 of my posts have been liked

About Alan7140

  • Birthday 07/01/1953

Profile Information

  • My Real Name
    Alan Lesheim
  • Gender
  • Photographic Interests
    Photography, Guitar
  • Edit my pics?
    Ask Me
  • My Favourite Camera
    Pentacon Six
  • My Favourite Lens
  • My Favourite Image Editor
    Rodinal, with some elbow grease ;)
  • My Location
    Tasmania, Australia
4,566 profile views
  1. I really didn't want to go down the new computer path - my old one was keeping pace (or so I thought), but I can't do without a Wacom tablet and with Wacom no longer supporting my old Intuos IV tablet with drivers for Windows 10 I had already bought a new Intuos Pro tablet. As I bought at the top end of the market back in December 2011 (the first generation i-7 processor & 64GB DDR2 ram) I did get a good run, but the latest 2024 Photoshop had also required 4GB minimum graphics which led to a new card last year and everything thus snowballed to this inevitable new machine as I was clearly being forced down a perpetual upgrading of various bits and pieces with the old machine. Perhaps the thing that has become most evident with starting afresh is how slickly the new setup works - 12 years of installing/uninstalling/adding & subtracting bits and pieces as well as numerous software updates and the cumulative effect all that had on the machine's performance (aside from the hardware updates needed during that time) really did have a creeping performance hit that wasn't so obvious at the time. Unfortunately this has been let down with the dog of an interface that Windows 11 has foisted onto us for no other reason that it's "new". Being used to tree navigation of my drives, the icon-based disjointed interface Microsoft has decided we have to enjoy with Windows 11 is simply bloody awful. The default "pretty" navigation that it continually reverts to leaves me constantly confused, which is really bloody annoying. The rafts of workaround YouTubes that abound (none of which really work) would indicate that I am far from being Robinson Crusoe on this.🙁
  2. I've been birthing a new computer here since just before Christmas, and hopefully this is the last time I'll ever have to do so, which explains my absence here of late. Windows 10 was no longer being supported by some of my peripherals, and my old machine was unable to be updated to Windows 11 - so catch 22 = a new i-9 all-SSD computer. Loading all the software really is a drag, though.
  3. Alan7140

    The Post

    That poor little X100 must be in a state of permanent shock in suddenly getting such a workout after all those years of sitting idle! 😁
  4. Alan7140

    Keep It Square

    I never warmed to digital->B&W conversions, and is largely why I started using film again if B&W is my ultimate goal. The ordered arrangement of sensels on a single plane (or even in three planes as in the Foveon sensor) in a sensor physically cannot reproduce the same result as random microscopic silver halide grains suspended in 3-D in a gelatin emulsion, and the way these clump together when reduced to metallic silver depending on how much light they've been exposed to. Adding digital noise to emulate this look doesn't work because the noise is random over that one-dimensional layer of sensels, and so just adds grain-looking noise over the existing image rather than it actually constituting the image itself.
  5. The ways of Adobe are mysterious indeed. The X100 has a standard Bayer sensor, so Adobe's continuing inability to properly deal with X-Trans sensor versions can't be blamed for this. The only thing I can think of is that somehow your default colour profile setting in LR has been changed without warning (say from Adobe RGB to sRGB or something like that) which could be one way this sort of thing could manifest itself. Rechecking that your colour profile settings in LR prefs as well as in the camera itself are matching might be as good a place as any to start.
  6. Having gone through the photography course at RMIT University (Melbourne, Australia) 1971-73 with a Hasselblad 500C/M outfit which was also used for work until 1977 (our studio switched to Pentax 67 and Mamiya M645 then, so I followed suit), later rejoining the Hasselblad clan in 1997 with three 500 C/M bodies and numerous lenses until digital cameras took over in 2006 when all my gear was traded over the next few years to acquire ever newer digital models as our generation acted as unpaid testers for camera manufacturers' development programs until my official retirement in 2018, by which time I had already embarked on acquiring a bevy of old 35mm, 120 and large format film cameras to return to my film roots. Firmly a lover of square format, but with Hasselblad cameras already being priced beyond common sense for this project, I had an unsuccessful encounter with a couple of Kiev 60C camera bodies and Soviet lenses before settling with what I consider to be a much underrated camera system bearing the Pentacon Six TL label with its superb Carl Zeiss Jena lenses, all of which was incredibly affordable compared to the Western cameras of 6x6 format. In fact these days you'd be struggling to buy a good Hasselblad 500 body with standard lens and back for what I paid for the entire Pentacon Six outfit pictured below (30mm fisheye & 45mm wide angle are USSR lenses, 50mm, 80mm, 120mm, 180mm and 300mm lenses are all Zeiss Jena items in excellent condition, as are the two Pentacon Six TL bodies, to one of which I have adapted a KIEV 60C prism viewfinder - the camera is a bit awkward when used with the waist-level finder for other than low-angle shots): Prices are on the rise now, though, and it's wise to buy a body with a confirmed recent service to replace the old Soviet oil which tends to gum up the works as well as familiarizing oneself with the somewhat eclectic handling procedures required for smooth, trouble-free operation, but other than that this camera system is right up there with the best of what the West had to offer in the post war film camera period before digital.
  7. It was helped along by putting it through On1 Photo Raw's "No Noise" filter as IR does accentuate noise with the Foveon sensor. The red/IR sensitive sensels are at the bottom of the three layer stack of BGR sensels) and as such receive just 25% of the light that the uppermost B sensels get, which in turn is compensated for by electronic amplification to match, which creates noise. Part of that filter comprises a sharpening facility as the noise reduction does tend to soften the image - if anything IR with its longer wavelength is intrinsically less sharp than visible light anyway. The sensels don't have individual colour filters as with Bayer sensors, but rely on the absorption of blue, green and red light by the actual silicone that comprises the sensor chip itself as the light travels through the stack. The sigma sd Quattro-H is a curious beast, but was the only camera I know of that enables this IR sensitivity by easy removal of its IR-cut filter, which is positioned at the front of the camera just behind the lens mount itself with a simple press-to-release catch, and is therefore not an immovable part of the sensor itself as it is with all other cameras. Unfortunately Sigma have stalled on any further development of these cameras as "the Internet" complained bitterly about its noisy low-light/high ISO performance because of that amplification of the G & R layers to match the B layer when shooting in visible spectrum mode to the degree that Sigma decided to kill the camera rather than try to educate the naysayers as to the potential of further development of the Foveon sensor.
  8. I dusted of my now disused Sigma sd Quattro-H camera, removed the IR-cut filter with tweezers (it's still the only camera one can do that with, simple and reversible), fitted an old 1981 Russian Jupiter 38A 135/3.5 M42 lens with adapter for Sigma SD mount and attached an R72 infra-red filter and took this scene of tractors fitted with mowing and raking implements as they were on a break during a lucerne harvest/baling session. IR really does do B&W magic with skies, trees and vegetation in general.
  9. Yes, I couldn't agree more. 😁 From this: to this: resulting in this: Which brings the enjoyment back into photography and makes it truly hands-on again.
  10. The last one, #6, is my favourite. Outstanding!
  11. I have no problems with "new technologies", my only problem with that is the implication that these new technologies are by definition better than those which went before, or which they were developed from. Not everything whiz-bang and new is an improvement, sometimes to many they actually are a retrograde step. I say this with some qualification, too, as March 2024 will mark the 52nd year of the start of my first full-time photography job (assistant photographer in an advertising photography studio), followed by continuous employment in nothing but photography either with a studio, or from 1982 in self-employment. In that time I had favourite cameras, of course, but three in particular stand out above the rest. In the true name of nostalgia I have assembled the basic outfit of my two favourite cameras over that time, starting with the Minolta SRT 101 I cut my teeth on in the first year of my RMIT University Illustrative Photography course (1971-3), followed by the Olympus OM-1 I used for 35mm work after starting my own photography business in 1982. Of course I used many more film cameras over that time, Pentax Spotmatic, Hasselblad 500C/M & EL/M, NikonF4 & FE2, Mamiya M645, RB & RZ67, Mamiya Press, Nagaoka 5"x4" Field, ToyoView 45A Field 5"x4", Cambo 8"x10", plus many others I've forgotten about (some deliberately). So joining those two favourite 35mm cameras currently is the Fujifilm X-T5 - finally a digital camera at a reasonable price point that can match the results I used to get on the MP4 copy stand during the 40-odd years I concentrated on copy & restoration of photographs as my main line of business. Even though I'm officially retired now (still do the odd job now and then), the pixel-shift tech and 160MP files it produces on the copy stand are easily a match for the best 5"x4" copy negs I'd get using Kodak specialty sheet films like Pro Copy and other films designed for that use, and which ended in 2004 when Kodak ceased making those films before going broke. Having thus been forced out of film I struggled mightily with a succession of digital cameras in the interim (Nikon D70s D2x, D3, D3s, D600, Fuji X-T1, X-T2) working up from 6MP to 24MP and using multiple shots and stitching to achieve something approaching the film resolution I was after, along came the X-T5 just after I retired and solved all my problems. So I bought it just out of spite to prove to myself that I was indeed correct in identifying the reason for my inability to get to where I wanted to be with digital vs where I was with analogue back in the early 2000's. So with regard to traditional camera layout not being a "nostalgic" thing, I can't help but include the X-T5 as being both familiar to use from my past experiences, as well as being entirely the most practical camera for me to use now, as well as finally quelling my search for a true replacement for film in what was my main photographic business. Sure there have been other cameras recently that easily match or better the X-T5, but they cost more than anyone in my line of photography could justify - the X-T5 with its new and brilliant 30mm f/2.8 macro lens in comparison was eminently affordable and justifiable, and so easy to use because Fuji didn't try to re-invent the wheel and kept the camera itself so easy, quick and familiar to use. Looking at those two significant 35mm film cameras from my past in company with the X-T5 (logo blacked-out for copy stand use), it's easy to see why I took to the Fujifilm's format so well - if anything its dials are better placed and more legible than the old Minolta and Olympus, and so can be said to be an improvement on the past without having to descend into electronic menus and toggle between seemingly endless list of options and settings (although the X-T5 still supplies those as part of the package for those who are into digital masochism).😁 Size-wise it is also right there with those two old favourites and avoids the bloated lumps of so-called "pro" cameras that the likes of Nikon heaved onto us as some sort of good thing. In fact I stuck with my F4 (which was already obese) and avoided the F5 altogether, but little did I know then that the F5 was just a forerunner of what was to come in their digital "pro" camera bodies. Therefore I don't consider the Fuji X-T5 to be "nostalgic", maybe "practical" is a better word.
  12. One of my favourite things about the Fuji-X cameras I've had (or still have - X-100, X-Pro-1, X-T1, X-T2 & X-T5) are those dials, for no other reason (and certainly not "nostalgia") than I can see exactly what the camera exposure settings are (shutter speed, lens aperture, ISO) at in one glance as I pick it up - no need to even turn it on first. Call me old school, but I find that this is usually all the information I need to start shooting immediately, having physically made any adjustments to those dials if needed. All the rest is pure pfaff to me unless I intend to do a multi-row panorama, HDR or focus-shift stack, whereupon the camera menu is consulted. Otherwise I rarely press that "Menu" button at all. I'll confess that I probably don't even know what 80% of the menu contents are for. I think I seem to do alright even so. 😄
  13. Alan7140

    S & M

    Full moon taken at night: Fujifilm X-T5 with Fujinon 100-400 lens @ 400mm and 1.4x TC fitted. Exposure: 1/250@f/8, 200 ISO. Same setup for ¾ moon shot taken in daylight: Exposure 1/170 @ f/11 , ISO 200. Both are consistent with a lesson I remember from a university lecturer: a shot of the sunlit moon can be had, day or night, if exposed at around 1/125 sec @ f/11 on 125 ASA film (as it was back in the early '70's). So nothing special about it, except that I'm based in rural Southern Tasmania (42.7°S), where the weather patterns flow from west to east, and there is virtually no human settlement further than 35km west of me (and even then that's just some farmland and a few small settlements of fewer than a hundred or so people each), next stop to the west and any source of pollution is the southern tip South America, so it's fair to say that outside the few cases of the nut-jobs at Forestry Tasmania burning off the trash their logging operations cause, we have just about the clearest air in the world here (that west-east flow of air misses South Africa's tip @ 34°S by a good distance). All that in turn makes any celestial photography free from atmospheric distortion caused by air or light pollution, which helps things no end.
  14. Alan7140

    S & M

    ...and adding to the above - you could probably do it in one shot if your camera has enough dynamic range - take a shot in broad daylight at the correct exposure, duplicate the image as another layer and up the contrast whilst adjusting the exposure to reveal the moon's details, then mask out the background in the upper layer to reveal the correctly exposed landscape and sky behind (it'll only probably work with a full moon, though, unless you wand to get into some really tricky retouching). Here's a shot that was a washed out moon in a light blue sky in which I rammed up the contrast until that sky became black and the moon ended up looking like this: Edit: - it occurred to me the above is not much use without posting the daylight shot of the moon from which the above photo resulted:
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