Sunday, May 17, 2015

Yesterday I got to test out my new camera (D600)

We headed out to spend our saturday in the country side.
My girlfriends brother's kids were also there.

I ended up testing the D600 with my Series E -lenses (28mm f/2.8 & 50mm f/1.8) and my 
Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 EX DG HSM
I also tried out, since now I finally had the chance, the Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 crop-sensor lens on a full frame camera.

Overall I was amazed at the quality of the Series E -lenses, clearly they aren't as practical as the autofocus lenses of more modern times, but the quality is amazing nevertheless.

Below are some photographs taken with said combinations.

Nikon D600 & Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8

Nikon D600 & Nikon 28mm f/2.8 Series E

Nikon D600 & Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 EX DG HSM

Nikon D600 & Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 EX DG HSM

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Update & DIY Tutorial (Lenskirt)

It's been awhile, there's no denying that.
But if you follow me on other social networks (links on the website), you've noticed that I've not been away exactly.

Anyways, on to the point.. Which Today is a DIY Lenskirt, where "DIY" means "Do It Yourself" and "Lenskirt" is something that blocks the light and reduces or removes reflections when photographing through a window.. usually meaning from inside to outside.

I bought some materials essential to the project:

Black ripstop-material meant for kites ( roughly 1.5m x 1m = 5.5€ )
Clear suction cups ( 10 pcs = 1.6€ )
Safety pins ( 50 pcs ina box = 2.5€ )
Super Glue ( had some lying around the apartment )
Duct Tape ( never be without some )

I began by cutting an appropriate size single piece from the fabric, which ended up being about
50cm x 1m ( if you're using the same fabric, remember to slightly burn the edges so it doesn't undo itself ).
Next, I super-glued the long ends together, overlapping about 2cm.
Now, don't let the glue dry out completely!
When you feel it will hold, start folding the glued portion on top of itself, making a proper seal that can take a beating.
When youve done that, let it dry properly.

Next up, use the safety pins to attach atleast 4 suction cups to one end of the tube (with the seem facing outwards and safety pins attached from the inside) you just created by glueing the fabric. Make sure to make the bond between the fabric and the suction cup as tight as possible with the safety pin.
When you've done that, lock the safety pins by squeezing the end with pliers (I used my Leatherman). Then tightly apply a piece of duct tape over the safety pins.

When your safety pins are duct taped to safety.. Duct tape the seem to make a nice, firm seem that holds its form a bit better.

Next and final stage is to flip the thing inside out, remember to be gentle with it..

I'm sorry I don't have step-to-step photographs, but this is not rocket science.. fortunately.
If you have questions, please ask.. I'll try to reply as soon as I can.

Last, but not least, some photos of the finished project.

DIY Lenskirt attached to a window, with a Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 inside it.

DIY Lenskirt with nothing inside it (this is how well it holds its form, because of the super glue + fold + duct tape).

DIY Lenskirt, holding a D7100 + Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 inside.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

My top 2 DX lenses for Nikon DSLR

I've thought this long and hard.. but my opinions are not going to change.

So here are my top 2 lenses for a Nikon DX -body:

Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 (older version without the focus motor)

There is just nothing better than this. Sharp at f/2.8, only gets sharper when stopped down. Focal lenght optimal for landscapes, night time star-photos, minimal distortion, built almost likeba tank, lightweight (no internal focus motor).. list goes on..

If you shoot landscapes, action photos, or pretty much anything where you might need a wide field of view, definitely get this lens. As a bonus, it's been said that this lens also works on FX-bodies at 16mm, but I havent had a chance to test this out.

Nikon 35mm f/1.8g DX

Optimal focal lenght on a DX body for pretty much anything (field of view equivalent of a 50mm on an FX body), fast aperture f/1.8 which gathers a lot of light, enabling you to use lower ISOs ( less grain ) and faster shutter speeds ( less camera shake ).
Pre-owned price around 100€ - 130€, buy it new for around 200€

If you are in need for a longer focal lenght, Tokina also has a 50-150mm f/2.8 lens, but I haven't had a chance to test this lens yet.

Friday, March 20, 2015

More photographing today..

As you might have seen from, well, pretty much everywhere around the world.. 
if you follow social media and/or the news at all..
There was a solar eclipse today, in some parts of the world it was complete..

Where I live, Tampere, it was not.. 
With the naked eye you could not see much change in luminosity, but you could feel the temperature drop rapidly.

I was on a location, shooting timelapse.. again.

I took my D7100, D7000, Tokina 11-16mm, Sigma 24-70mm, SJCam SJ4000 + GoPro Hero 3+ Silver and put them all to good use (I hope).

I was on location, outside, enjoying the sunshine from 9AM to almost 2PM.. I still can't believe how fast time flies when you're doing something you love..

I'll start working on the timelapse video, as soon as I have the time.


Found that my photo made it to an article

I received a message through yesterday, 
saying that my Aurora Borealis photo
was included in an article showcasing 
some of the Northern Lights photos troughout Scandinavia.
The article is named

Beautiful Aurora Borealis captured all over Northern Europe

This is of course good news, 
as I'd like as many people to see the photo as possible.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Here it is.. the timelapse of your life!

So, I finally managed to edit all the photos, 
find a song that I find suitable (a friend of mine composed it actually), 
render and upload it. 

I really hope you enjoy this spectacular show 
of Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis) that took place last night, 
right in my home town.. 

Tampere, Finland.

Last week has been really busy..

I've been taking loads and loads of photos, with the end goal of making timelapses.
As you might suspect, this leads up to thousands of photographs pretty quickly.

Thursday, March 12th, I headed to the (frozen) beach of lake Tohloppi (Tohloppijärvi in Finnish), in Tampere, Finland to capture a sunset. I was accompanied by my girlfriend, as well as my dog (Hobo).

I ended up taking a whopping 895 photographs, with them still being unedited.. plus a couple random stills with my other camera.

Saturday, March 14th, I headed to the beach in Pirkkala during the night (yes.. freezing cold) to capture about 50minutes worth of the earth rotating against the sky.. basically stars over Tampere.
I was accompanied by my girlfriend. I ended up capturing about 500 photos in total.

Sunday, March 15th, I headed to the viewtower in Pyynikki, Tampere, to capture a sunset from a place pretty high up. For this project, I wanted to use something different.
I ended up setting my 1 camera with an 11mm lens, and the other at 24mm.. plus I had my GoPro recording timelapse aswell. In total from all 3 cameras, I ended up with about 2500 photographs.

Last night (March 17th - 18th), I headed to Rauhaniemen Kansankylpylä for a spectacular view of a beautiful show of dancing auroras (Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights).
This trip I was accompanied by a fellow amateur photographer, Miia. It was her first ever night-time shooting. 
I hope I was of some help with the settings, angles etc.
I had both my cameras recording timelapse and ended up with about 900 photographs in total.

Now.. if only I could find the time to edit the videos..

Here are some photos taken from the trips and shoots I talked during this post..
I hope you enjoy watching them at least half as much as I did photographing them.

Lake Tohloppi

My girlfriend and my dog


 Pyynikki viewtower

 Northern Lights

Friday, March 06, 2015

Solar eclipse, March 2015

There's going to be a solar eclipse this month. I've already told my boss 
I need the day off to go and try get some nice photos.. how about you, any plans?
Check out the link for info how the eclipse might look in you location:

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Weirdest thing with my cameras

I recently bought a used D300 along with some accesories. The camera worked like new, So I wanted to take it out for a spin.. I took about 700 frames of timelapse footage with the optimal settings (or what I considered optimal when checking the frames in-camera).

I was not impressed at all, I understand tha the D300 is much older than the D7100 that I'm used to at the moment.

I felt like I had no choice than to get rid of it, fortunately I managed to get the same amount from it, than what I paid.

Now, come sunday, I'll be getting a used D7000..

Oh, also, I bought Kenko's extension tube set.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Surgical operation finished..

So.. last friday I had an operation done on my left earleaf.. because it kept getting infected for some reason.

At first I was supposed to go to TAYS for the operation, but apparently there had been an error (human or other) with the reservation of the operating room. I ended up having to go to Valkeakoski for the operation.

The operation itself was over in about 30 minutes. Fortunately they did not make me sleep during it.

Funny thing, in my opinion, was that there was no interview with the surgeon regarding the sick-leave required to have it heal enough for me to get back to work.. they just wrote 2 days (friday and saturday) and told me to go to my doctor paid by my employer on monday.

So, I ended up taking painkillers for the weekend (Panacod & 800mg Burana) along with antibiotics (Kefexin).

Monday I headed out to Mehiläinen (which is the healthcare paid by my employer) to see the doctor. He noticed slight bleeding from the wound and gave me 2 days of sick-leave..

Today, I'm back at work, still eating antibiotics and painkillers, but had to skip out on Panacod because of work. I had to take a bit more of Burana to compensate.
Obviously it still hurts like a b***h, but I also noticed slight bleeding this morning.

But hey, the doc knows best, eh?
Can't be bothered to go back the for this..
Hopefully it'll heal. Stitches get taken out this friday.

Sunday, February 08, 2015

Clear skies at LAST!

Last night was the first good clear sky -night in a long time.. So obviously I was eager to head out with my cameras.

We, my girlfriend and me, decided to combine 2 trips (as we like to do), so we headed out to her parents in Juupajoki, Finland.

I took my Nikon D300, D7100 and my GoPro Hero 3+ Silver Edition with me, along with some warm clothes obviously and made sure that the batteries were charged and cards emptied.

The GoPro was tasked to record timelapse footage (0.5 and 1 sec intervals, depending on the time of day), inside the car.
The DSLR's were tasked to record timelapse footage in the woods, which was pretty much completely  dark.. some minor light pollution in the horizon from the direction of Tampere though.

Anyways.. I will have some footage to show, as soon as I have the time to look through them and edit/upload them.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Some of my photographs get critiqued by Eric Rossi

So, Eric gave me the chance to have some of my photos get critiqued by him on Youtube, which I obviously didn't want to miss out on.

I really enjoyed watching this and receiving honest feedback from someone with way more experience than me.

What do you think?

Saturday, January 17, 2015

D300 has changed ownership

JHook Photography

So.. today I bought the pre-owned Nikon D300, with the Nikon MB-D10 battery grip, 3 Nikon EN-EL3e batteries, 2 Nikon chargers and an 8Gb CF card.

I already had a screw-driven Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 on the shelf reserved for it.

My plan was to head out tonight to test the camera, but I won't be doing that for 2 reasons..

#1 the sensor is a bit dirty, and as I didn't bring my kit with me..

#2 the sky is completely covered with clouds

Hopefully someday, not too far in the future, we'll see some stars (with no moon washing them out ).

Friday, January 16, 2015

New camera purchase.. and a mic.

JHook Photography

Well.. it is a used camera, but a new one for me..

I found a great deal online for a Nikon D300 + battery grip + 3 batteries + 2 chargers ( all Nikon ) and an 8gb cf memory card, which I'm going to go pick up tomorrow.

The D300 is going to be my secondary timelapse "gun", alongside my D7100.

I already have a #lens for the camera on the shelf. A Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 screw-driven. It will work nicely, since the D300 has a focus motor built in.

I also purchased an external mic earlier this week. A Zoom H2next. No actual experiences with it just yet, but I will upload a quality test pretty soon.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

New year, new post..

JHook Photography

First of all, I need to apologize for not posting for awhile.

A lot has happened since my last update.
After I got back from my parents's summer cabin back in November, I edited the photos and the light-painting video, uploaded them, got back to work and continued onwards in life as usual.
However, early December I was presented with an opportunity to purchase a Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G VR-ED lens with a bargain of a price (no, it wasn't stolen or broken). So, I managed to procure enough cash to get it (beast for a lens by the way).
Also, I ended up giving 200€ to charity during christmass, for 2 families with small children and in need of assistance.

This week was also pretty hectic, monday (Jan. 5th) it was -22celsius, almost full moon and completely clear skies, so me and the missus headed out to Siikaneva National Park in Ruovesi, Finland to enjoy fresh air and the scenery next to a bonfire. Ended up making a short timelapse of it.
This gave me the idea, to get a second dslr as another point of view next to my D7100.

Today I found a good deal..
A Nikon D300 (53k shutter count), Nikon battery grip, 2 Nikon chargers and 3 Nikon batteries.. for a bargain.
Ordered a cheapo intervalometer and a 32gb cf card from ebay aswell.

Hobo, my mixed breed dog also turned 4 on Dec. 26th, she got to do her favorite things.. running, eating lamb-bones and going to a hot sauna with me.

I kinda made a couple new year's resolutions aswell:
I will up my photography a notch and be more active in social media regarding my photography.
Get out to take pictures/timelapse/video even more.
Eat atleast a bit helthier.
Spend more time with my girlfriend (hopefully combining all of the above at the same time).

What kind of resolutions/goals did you make for yourself for this year and/or the future?