What is this blog about?

  • This blog is to share the results of my photo equipment testing so that others may have samples to see or to compare their results.
  • I test so that I can more confidently use my camera when I am out shooting and concentrate on shooting.
  • I try new techniques to get closer to the image I see through my eyes.
  • I keep shooting because I want to share what I see with others.
  • I also like having the full story. Manufacturers are good at revealing half the truth, but I don’t believe it until I see it, and I’m not happy until I know the gotchas so I am not caught off guard when I’m trying to use it at the fleeting moment.
  • And as an instructor at heart* and generally curious guy, I like to share what I find.

*The student becomes the teacher when they become more curious than the teacher (or something like that).

Good luck with your photography, and I hope what I have to share is useful to you.

Why don’t you post many personal photos?

If they are of family or friends, then I post on Facebook. If I want feedback from fellow photographers, then I post on Flickr (and maybe 500px someday). If they are from my kid’s soccer team, school concert, or a school event, then they go to just those parents and teachers via OneDrive. I don’t do Twitter or Instagram. I don’t shoot to get followers. That’s just not me right now.

And you won’t find my best photos in this blog. It’s mostly for sharing test results so they can be useful to others (and maybe they can can share info with me, too).

What about articles you like?

You might find links in the posts that relate to the topic of the post, but I use Flipboard for articles.

Why do you sometimes incorrectly refer to XC lenses as FC lenses?

Because I am terminally human. Oops! (Thanks mkamelg for pointing out my errors.) I have used Canon equipment for so long which use EF and EF-S lenses, AI Focus and AI Servo, and Nikon has their own terminology to one-up each other. Then I started researching Fuji gear, and found myself accidentally referring to XQ1 as QX1. Plus there are tons more alphabet soup acronyms out there. Please let me know when I make mistakes and I will correct them as soon as I can.

Are you a professional photographer?

I get that question a lot from people. Some never see me with my camera so, hopefully, the question is because of the quality of the photos that I shoot. But for many, a lot of it is probably just because (until I got the Fuji X-T1) I carried around huge Canon bodies and lenses on a wide sling strap.

But, no. I don’t make my living on photography, but I do have more than a little experience.

Why do you keep updating old posts?

I was a professional graphic designer for many years, and, like many designers, I want to keep refining and re-designing. Plus, I’m new to WordPress and am always trying to fix oddities in html or trying to get the design to bend to my will. For example: Why the heck does Heading 3 look different on a Windows computer than on my iPad??? How do you get the navigation (sidebar) to move from the side to the bottom so I can get more width???

I’m also inherently curious, and when I learn something, I instinctively want to share it, but I also don’t like incorrect information to stay out on the Internet, so I prefer to correct an old post rather than litter the web with extraneous new posts following-up on old incorrect posts. That’s just crazy.

Do you have anything against Photoshop and Lightroom?

Nope. I used Photoshop extensively as a graphic designer for many years. I have been testing DxO Optics Pro and find it a useful tool. I’ve also spent thousands of hours in the darkroom and have been asked to correct the uncorrectable with Photoshop many times. My mantra is junk in – junk out. I would rather spend time taking more pictures (and focus on getting it right the first time) than spending tons of time in post trying to polish trash.

Do I have anything against filters? Not the filters, but the overuse is rather disconcerting. I know that cameras only capture the raw, unfiltered data and it is up to us afterwards to make it the vision we see in our minds (much like what we use to do in the darkroom), but over-reliance on them feels like a big crutch. Like taking chemical logs with you when you are deep in the woods camping for weeks. Like hunting big game with jeep and a guide. It’s not for me and my shots may not be as unnaturally vibrant as other photos on the web, but that is how I like to do it.

Why so many versions of the same info?

As an instructor and someone who has to make a lot of “how to” documents, I am acutely aware that people take in information differently. Some like every step with pictures, some like analogies, and some like lots of examples. I feel like the posts focus on a different aspect of the information or I am presenting the information differently, but I apologize if this can be confusing.

Why don’t you post more full size photos?

I’m just using the free version of WordPress with limited storage.

Why do you “pixel peep”?

Comparing and examining images at the pixel level is like appreciating the details done on a well-built car or the craftsmanship on a good piece of furniture. Beauty is not only how something looks, but how something is built which is often unseen like the inside of an iPad. Sharp images are like a freshly ironed shirt vs a shirt right out of the dryer. For those of you won’t don’t want to see behind the curtain, don’t look but don’t be haters. For those of you avoiding pixel peeping and very happy, don’t start. Ignorance is bliss.