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Macro Shooting

I bought a really spectacular lens (MP-E 65) for my Canon SLR for macro photography but it takes a ton of patience, low wind, and a good tri/monopod to get satisfactory results. I wasn’t expecting that kind of extreme-macro from my new FujiFilm xpro-2 but pretty early on I realised my “plain” Canon L-series lenses were spoiling me a bit in that they can focus to a very close distance whereas while FujiFilm is completely adequate for normal photography, as soon as you start to approach the macro relm it loses the plot.

In order to address this i bought the quite inexpensive MCEX-11 macro extension tube. It came today and I didn’t have much time to try it out but thought I’d just dip in the back garden and use my go-to shooting lens (18mm f/2) with and without the tube. Bear in mind I didn’t get out their until dusk so light was only adequate and this matters in macros shots (where a ring-flash is a handy thing I didn’t have). In both photos I have had to bang ISO to 3200 and macro shot looses some clarity due to a 1/30s shutter speed which isn’t really enough without a tripod to steady it. Also you’ll notice the depth of field tends to be much lower with macro shots (I should know why) and shot at f/5.6 you see that parts of the leaf didn’t make into the rather shallow depth of field.

Mainly the thing I want people to notice is that I can get MUCH closer with the tube, focusing is fast, and now with the low-weight little 18mm lens I can easily switch add the also-small extension tube to dig into the Macro.

Over the weekend I’ll try it with my other lenses (35mm f/2, 56mm f/1.2, 85mm f/2 ). Seems a lot of macro shooters prefer the 50-70mm range for macros. Not being an expert I’m not sure why precisely but I learn from trying more than reading.

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With Macro Tube
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Without Macro Tube

Coombeshead Farm

Kabuki and I spent the weekend at Coombeshead Farm in Cornwall. Coombsehead  is a newly openned Bed and Breakfast that operates out of an old family farm building, features a very foody focus on food in a rustic, quiet and peaceful setting. If that weren’t enough there is also the team … a small and close group of friends who greet everyone like you’re part of the group. Really an amazing experience. We’re planning on going back again in December. 🙂

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All of the high resolution photos can be found at: Coombeshead Farm.

Mood Swings

Anyone that says that women don’t have mood swings hasn’t met my wife. Below is a simulation of this effect, in the case of a real emergency I would typically drop the camera and run. 🙂

Mood Swings

Freelancer Avenue

Working from home you can sometimes get bored with the setting (and a general lack of people) so I do try and get out for lunch a few times a week. What always surprises me is how many other people in Kensal Rise seem to be doing the same thing and how many convenient places there are in the neighborhood. I guess the first clue was when Cable Co. — a botique coffee shop on the high street — first openned. I really wanted them to be successful and when I asked about business they were quick to point out that the normal “commuter rush” was nothing compared to the “post commuter” hangout with work-from-homers.

The picture above is from yesterday’s lunch at Taste of Chamberlyne and below is today’s lunch/brunch at Parlour. Both are super friendly service, good food, and free wifi.

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p.s. yeah I know Parlour looks pretty empty but that can be a good thing … they’re either packed or empty (you have to know when to go).

EOS 86 Reunion

I had a ball at this Saturday’s EOS ’86 reunion. Probably everyone thinks their class is special and if so, add me to the list. Lots of smart people and great conversations. Thanks to everyone who could make it to contributing such a nice reunion.

As many of you heard me complain about that night, my new camera does not have a built-in flash so there are less pictures than I’d ideally like to have taken but still managed to get some good ones.

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If you’re interested in the full resolution photos I took — during my week in Storrs, not just the reunion — they can be found here:

Full resolution photos

Relaxing in Pomfret

Had a chance to hang out with Melissa and Chris in their lovely house in Pomfret. The house and grounds are really stunning these days due to all the hard labour they’ve both put into it.