Wednesday, December 12, 2012

12 photographs on 12/12/12

I wanted to do something to mark the 12/12/12 date so I thought I would take 12 photographs.  I took the first four using my Zuiko 50mm f1.4 lens and the rest were taken with my 12-60mm zoom.  I think the sunset pictures could have been sharper.  I probably should have tried a manual focus.  So here are 12 photographs taken on December 12, 2012 with my Olympus OM-D E-M5.  No people.   Hopefully when I get my 17mm  f1.8 I can do more street type photography.  When is Olympus going to release it anyway?

The faded clear coat reminded me of flames you sometimes see painted on the hood of a sports car.

I love the blue and red.

Parent teacher conferences at the local junior high school

My attempt at balance -- bricks on the right, door on the left, Also the door with the vertical elements on the right.  Wreath offsetting the silver panel on the door.

This is one of the art filters on the camera used on my fireplace rocks.

The metal on this old table saw looks like Roman numerals.

Three levels and two ladders.

Sunset looking over Layton, Antelope Island and the Great Salt Lake.

Art filter.

Vivid setting.

Looking north so the lights of Salt Lake City.

This is a two panel panorama.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

U.P. in Uintah

The Union Pacific has a double track mainline that basically surrounds the little town of Uintah, Utah.  Here a UP/SP double header is pulling a full complement of hoppers down Weber Canyon and around the southern edge of Uintah. The sun is low in the western sky and the gives a nice complement to the UP yellow.  I cropped this to 2x3 (my preferred ratio for images) and added just a touch of contrast.

I'm having some trouble with focusing my E-M5.  The auto-focus function is activated when my nose touches the screen in the lower right so the camera is always trying to focus in that area.  I've got to read the manual to find out how to turn that feature off.  The train is just ever so slightly out of focus but it doesn't show on an image this size. I want perfect clarity, however, so I've got work to do.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Arbon Valley, Idaho

Two weeks ago I rode my motorcycle through Arbon Valley and I saw numerous photo opportunities.  I was pressed for time so I couldn't stop but Saturday I was able to make a return trip. Here are a few hand-held photographs.  

This old house had been pulled off its foundation and was sitting out in the pasture just begging to have its picture taken.  I stopped at a nearby ranch house to ask permission to take photos.  The friendly rancher just happened to be the owner and told me to take all the photos I wanted. Hopefully he'll check in here on my blog and leave a note.  There was still a little smoke in the air from distant forest fires but otherwise it was a beautiful day.  A few Ansel Adams clouds would have been nice.

E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  16mm f/9.0 1/640  ISO 200

E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  14mm f/13.0 1/320  ISO 200

E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  60mm f/9.0 1/640  ISO 200

E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  21mm f/9.0 1/500  ISO 200

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Beartooth Pass Trip

On a trip to Yellowstone Park and the Beartooth Pass I passed these mountains just south of Livingston, Montana.  The smoke from forest fires was lingering around the mountains like fog.  The Yellowstone River is in the foreground.
E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  12mm f/4.5 1/200  ISO 200

Fly fisherman on  the Gallatin River
E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  60mm f/5.6 1/320  ISO 200

E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  18mm f/5.6 1/250  ISO 200

Boardwalk at Mammoth Hot Springs. I did a lot of photography work with a Mamiya C220 square format camera so here's a square photo for old time's sake.
E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  32mm f/9 1/500  ISO 200

E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  23mm f/9 1/500  ISO 200

View from Beartooth Pass
E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  18mm f/6.3 1/250  ISO 200

E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  52mm f/7.1 1/320  ISO 200

Sunday, September 2, 2012

More from Antelope Island

I love old wood.  It has great texture and is for the most part very monochromatic so it looks good in b&w and sepia.  Being monochromatic the photographs are not overpowered by the amount and brightness of colors. This board fence is almost a sepia toned black and white.
E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  36mm f/8 1/400  ISO 200

black & white 


Back in my darkroom days I used gold toner to get a cool blue tint to the photos.  It was especially nice on winter scenes because it almost made you feel the cold.

E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  36mm f/8 1/400  ISO 200

  I don't really like this picture but it  is a good illustration of shallow depth of field with the 12-60
E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  39mm f/9 1/500  ISO 200

 The next two show the clarity of the lens when the photo is enlarged several times.  These were taken as L/SF jpegs.
E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  60mm f/7.1 1/500  ISO 200

A rather hazy day (thanks to distant forest fires) so it didn't make for the best landscapes.
E-M5 12-60 f/2.8-4  30mm f/10 1/500  ISO 200

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Ford Tractor

My roots are in black and white photography so I was looking for suitable b&w subjects while I was on Antelope Island. I visited "the Ranch" and found this gem. I put just a touch of sepia into it -- you know, about 20 seconds in the sepia tray. This was taken with my Olympus E-M5 12-60mm f/2.8-4 at 35mm f5.0 1/125 sec and ISO 200.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

First Impressions: Olympus OM-D E-M5 w/ 12-60mm f/2.8-4.0 lens

I recently purchased a new camera.  I was in Inkley's Camera a few weeks ago and the sales rep showed me his Sony Nex-5.  I liked the mirrorless technology but I wasn't ready to plunk down the money for one.  Then I heard Olympus had a new OM model that used an electronic view finder (EVF). I was intrigued because I have an OM-1 and an OM-2 from my film days.  I read several reviews on the new Olympus OM-D E-M5 and was very impressed.  I went to Inkley's to check one out but they didn't have any.  I like Inkleys because they match any Internet price. I wanted to get a really good lens with the camera and the reviews I read on the E-M5's kit lenses were so-so.  I did find that the reviews for the Olympus 12-60mm F/2.8-4.0 lens were stellar.  The problem with that lens was it has a regular four/thirds mount and the E-M5 uses a micro four/thirds mount. It requires an MMF-3 (or MMF-2) adapter (shown in the photo below).

Well, long story short is I bought the E-M5 silver body (because it looked like the original OM's) from Adorama and the 12-60 lens on e-bay. Although I looked at specs and read reviews on the lens I was still surprised at how big it was when I received it..  The lens is a thing of beauty, but it is a handful and makes it look like the camera at the end of it is a little toy.  It has lots of glass so consequently it is heavy by micro four/thirds standards. Here is a picture of my new Olympus OM-D E-M5 with the adapter and 12-60mm F/2.8-4.0 lens.

I love the looks of the camera body.  The dials, buttons and controls seem well laid out with the exception of the on-off switch. It would have been nice if Olympus could have put a switch on it like the OM-1 switch -- just not enough real estate for something so large.

I am replacing a Canon EOS Rebel T1i with a Canon EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS lens.  Here are some comparison photos of the two cameras (taken with my old Fuji FinePix E9000).

The lenses seem similar in size, but the Olympus is larger in diameter. I took some comparison photos with the cameras each mounted on a tripod.  The Olympus glass is definitely sharper than the Canon lens.

The flip-out screen on the Olympus is very functional and is a little larger than the Cannon's screen.
Here are some interesting specs from my digital scale:

Olympus OM-D E-M5 body (incl. strap):  16.2 ounces (460 grams)
Olympus 12-60mm f/2.8-4.0 lens: 22.4 ounces (634 grams)
Combined: 38.6 ounces (1094 grams)

Canon EOS Rebel T1i body (incl. strap): 20.3 ounces (20.3 grams)
Canon EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS lens: 16.3 ounces (462 grams)
Combined: 36.6 ounzes (1039 grams)

One of the reasons I bought the Olympus was its small size and weight.  Then I added the monster lens and ended up with a camera 2 ounces heaver than my Canon.

So is the lens worth it (in terms of both cost and weight)?  Based on my initial test photos the answer is yes. I'll be posting photos here which will answer that question more definitively.

I purchased an adapter so I could mount my OM lenses on the camera.  I've got a 28mm f/2.8, a 50mm f/1.4, a 100mm f/2.8 and a 200mm f/4.0.  Here is a photo of the E-M5 with the 28 (56 equivalent). It reminded me so much of my old OM's.
I thought I'd put in a couple of photos comparing the E-M5 with my OM-1.

You can see the resemblance, but there are notable differences as well.  

Just for fun I weighed the two cameras as configured in this photo.
OM-1: 27.1 ounces (769 grams)
OM-D E-M5: 24.9 ounces (707 grams)

Antelope Island

I got a new camera recently and yesterday I took it to Antelope Island on the Great Salt Lake. It was a hazy day but I found this monochromatic shot pretty interesting.  I used a 50mm f/1.4 prime lens from my Olympus OM-2 on my new Olympus OM-D E-M5 for this shot.