The new Nikon D5 and Canon EOS-1D X Mark II pro DSLRs
Do Canon and Nikon have spies working in each other's factories? Or is it just that the Olympics is happening later this year and both companies want to impress with a new pro camera? And the winner is?
I have worked extensively with both the Nikon D4 and Canon EOS-1D X cameras and, along with the new Phase One XF, I think that they represent the best cameras in the world history in terms of ergonomics and fit for purpose. The new D5 and remodelled EOS-1D X Mark II remain up the top although to be frank, I don't see any camp swapping. If I already had an investment in one or the other brand, I wouldn't be switching over. Both are superb machines. Both will keep their respective camps very, very happy.
Frostastdavatn, Landmannalaugar, Iceland.
(With apologies for the Australianized spelling - it's as close as I can get for an email newsletter)
Phase One 645DF & IQ180 with 110mm Schneider Kreuznach lens.
30 seconds @ f5.6, ISO 35
This photograph has a special memory for me.
As is often the case in Iceland, it was blowing a small gale up on the ridge, just above where this photo was taken, but by walking down a few metres, I was able to set up my tripod in relatively calm conditions. The area is called Landmannalaugar (incorrectly spelt in my previous correspondence) and it is understandably a favourite area with landscape photographers. And the name of this lake is also incorrectly spelt in the caption above because when I use the special Icelandic characters, they display differently on Macs, PCs and goodness knows what else.
But this isn't the memory.
Don't miss out on the latest issue of Better Photography, on sale at newsagents now.
Issue 82 contents:
2015 Photograph of the Year Results
Tim Page - Photojournalism
Antony Spencer - Shooting in Cold Climates
Plus much much more.
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I love the way the Phase One Digital Artists Series website promotes us!
"Australia's photographic dream team and Phase One are happy to announce a workshop this May in Kununurra and Emma Gorge. This workshop will visit Lake Argyle, El Questro, Emma Gorge, The Cockburn Ranges and the Ord River, depending on local conditions. The opportunities for stunning imagery are endless as is the knowledge available from the seasoned instructors.
"The workshop will be base out of Kununurra at the Pinctada Kimberley Grande. This will provide us with a very central location from which we'll travel a few times each day. During the day however we'll be based in the hotel, with access to a meeting room, for editing, tutorial lessons and general Q&A.
"Each day will offer new scenery and new challenges. With the help of our instructors Peter Eastway, Tony Hewitt and Christian Fletcher, you'll be sure to meet each challenge with plenty of instruction in order to build the perfect portfolio. We'll also have a Phase One representative as well the local Phase One distributor in Australia on hand to help answer any questions you may have.
"The workshop will cover everything, both on the ground and in the air as we've scheduled two separate helicopter flights from both Whyndam and over the Ragged Range. Extensive educational opportunities from the expertise of Peter, Tony and Christian as well as from Phase One directly are all waiting for you in Australia so sign up today."
So, the dream team or sleepless night? For more information, visit the PODAS website here.
Green Stuff, Landmannalaugur, Iceland.
Phase One IQ180 on Alpa TC with 23mm Rodenstock Digaron.
1/4 second @ f11
For my photo this week, I'd like to ease my conscience. Last year when I was on our Iceland workshop with Tony Hewitt, Christian Fletcher and Antony Spencer, we had a great bunch of 20 photographers putting up with us. And I think it's fair to say that as a group we all did remarkably well, although I'm sure from time to time there were little 'wrinkles' in the cosmos.
This photo was taken on one of those wrinkles.
We were driving through some pretty remote landscape, not far from Landmannalaugur or we might have actually been in it. Google this place and you will be amazed at the weird landscapes. We had stopped not long before and the four of us had agreed we really needed to get moving if we were to get to the next location.
However, shortly after this, Tony and Christian pulled their cars over to take some photos and I ticked them off about it. How, I asked, were we going to get to our hero location if they kept on stopping their cars to take amazing landscape shots? I couldn't blame them. Antony just followed their lead (he never had any wrinkles), but I left with a carefully phrased comment that expressed my displeasure.
My group and I took off in our car, intent on getting to the hero location, but a couple of hundred metres later, they all called out stop, stop, stop! The landscape had become even more interesting and I found it hard to ignore their pleas!
We pulled over, tumbled out, grabbed our cameras and a few minutes later, the other three cars came along.
"Oh, so we're in a hurry, are we", someone asked me, pointedly. The looks on Tony and Christian's faces said it all.
So, gents, I apologise. But the photographers in my car were quite correct - it was a good place to stop for a photograph. What we liked most were the little yellow flowers in the middle of the green mossy stuff. Antony could probably give us the botanical names, but for me, it just looked amazing!
As it's not possible to have sufficient depth-of-field from the foreground to the background in a shot like this (unless you're using a tilt shift lens), I focus stacked the image to keep both foreground and background sharp. This is a relatively easy subject for focus stacking.