Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Push the button

Man oh man!

Lotsa noise on my Christmas images!

Why? I've left the ISO setting on my 350D to 1600. :(

Next time, I should remember to push the "INFO." button and double check my settings everytime I change from one location to the other. Particularly the ISO and the flash exposure compensation.

Another thing I'm still learning in using dSLR is to look at the bottom of the viewfinder first, change the settings if necessary, then compose the photo.

These should be the steps:
  1. Point the cam to the subject.
  2. If not using flash, check the light meter.
  3. Adjust apperture, shutter speed, or both to get the light meter somehwere near the middle.
  4. Focus
  5. Recompose
  6. Click the shutter button.

Merry Christmas everyone.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Better equipment = better pics?

It's the indian not the pana.
In plain english, it translates to: It's the indian, not the bow and arrow.
Or, it's the photographer that matters, not the camera being used.

Look at the two photographs. Which is better or more appealing?

The first photograph is taken with a better equipment while the second one was taken using a point and shoot camera.

Some things you lack in skill, you compensate with technology.

* Shaky hands? there's Image Stabilizer.

* Difficulty telling if the subject is in focus?
Auto focus and focus assist beam.

* Better and faster focus ability.

* Better low light ability.

* Lesser incidents of red eye.

* Lower noise levels.

Better equipment is simply better.

A point and shoot in the hands of an able photographer will yield better than pro equipment in the hands of an amateur.

But if a point and shoot camera and an SLR is used by the same person (or same skill level), the pro equipment will definitely produce instantly better results.

In conclusion, the equipment is definitely a factor.
It will not help you on the art side of photography (composition), but will definitely help on the technical side (sharpness, exposure etc). Gear Matters!

"It IS the pana."

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Canon Soot N Run '06 Photo Contest

First Assignment: Splendor Of Manila

After shooting some of the common icons within intramuros, I passed by a not so popular park near Pasig river where a lot of the homeless find shelter. I found a girl resting on the lap of this giant. This is my entry for the first Assignment. I chose sepia tone to set the mood as I believe that in Manila, beauty is skin deep.


This is from a little known place near the Pasig river inside the walled city of Intramuros.

Second Assignment: Faces of Manila

For the second assignment, the theme is "Faces of Manila". I thought there's no better way to capture it than seeing the face of a true blue manileno. So I pushed my "beauty is skin deep" personal theme further by going to the side alleys. In places where you would not dare flash your old 5110 cellphone, more so a 30 thousand peso camera hanging on your neck.


This was supposed to be my entry for the second assignment. But I find the image too dark, so I'm not sure if I should use it or not. This was captured during a community service by the Alpha Kappa Rho fraternity at a barangay hall.

I instead opted for the image below. This captures the face of a typical manileno in deep concentration on one of their favorite past times.

"Past Time"

Sunday, December 10, 2006


Looking at some photo galleries online, you see a lot of very good photos. That's because they're good ... at Photoshop (or other post processing software).

Unfortunately, even some photojournalist does create "artificial" images instead of presenting things as they came out of the camera. There was even one stripped of an award due to "inappropriate" post processing of a winning image.

There's a photo contest to be held next week. This is an exciting event as NO POST PROCESSING IS ALLOWED for the photos to be submitted. I'm excited to see what the pre-processed image of the top photographers look like. I joined the event to be an observer. I don't have artistic tendencies so I doubt I'd ever come close to what the other participants can come up with. I'd rather take shots of the photographers in action.

Thursday, December 7, 2006

Food and backup camera

During the event in my previous post, I was shooting mostly groups of 3 for a certain portion of the program. So I've put on my 50mm 1.8 lens to get a wider apperture opening. There was a lull so I snuck out and ate dinner just outside the venue. Halfway through my platter, the coordinator was running to me panicking and asking to take some photos. I rushed back inside the venue ... and ... gosh! It's a group shot. The 50 mm is too long to get everyone in the photo. Luckily, I have my trusty A610 and shot the group with that puny camera. Whew!

The Lesson:

1. Always carry fast food.
Cookies, bread whatever. Something that will fit in your bag or pocket for a quick munch.

2. Always have a spare camera, even if it's a point and shoot.

Wednesday, December 6, 2006

1st indoor event

Kit Lens
The kit lens of the 350d is a 18-55mm F3.5-5.6. It just won't cut it for indoor events. The lens is too slow to have a good enough exposure. I want to shoot sports, but it seems I could possibly make money from shooting events. And I need to earn in order to sustain the expensive hobby of photography. Now this makes me think twice about the lens I was craving for, a Canon 70-200F4L. I might instead opt for a Tamron AF 28-75mm f2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical IF. An apperture opening of 2.8 apparently is a minimum requirement for indoor events photography.

The onboard flash is not enough too. Photos are still too dark even when you fire the onboard flash and the background is lost. You'll definitely need a powerful external flash.

Having a limitted gear, I pumped up the ISO to 800. The result, noisy pics. I hope I earn enough money soon to be able to buy the necessary gear.

Tuesday, December 5, 2006

Focus recompose at F1.8, DON'T!

If you're shooting at F1.8 or larger apperture, don't use focus-recompose technique as the DOF is too shallow. A slight change in angle moves the focus distance and you'll get a blurry photo as shown here. I'd rather recommend changing the focus point.

Monday, December 4, 2006


Hi all. I'll be putting up my photojournalism adventures in this page. Hope you learn from my experiences or at least enjoy the stories. I'm currently using a Canon A610 point and shoot, Canon F1 film SLR and a Canon 350d entry level DSLR.

This is a very expensive hobby and I hope I could make extra cash to spend some more for the necessary gear for my type of photography. I'm currently eyeing a 70-200F4L canon lens, 430EX canon flash, a monopod and some other accessories. Dear Santa, I've been a good boy this year... :)