Friday, July 31, 2009

Field Test of the Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS

When you need to test a good camera or a telephoto, try shooting birds. Birds require very high shutter speed and fast focus. So if your gears are not good enough you'll end up with lousy photos.

After buying the 100-400mm, I went to Zoo Negara for the 4th time. Zoo Negara is a poorly maintained zoo. But they have a bunch of painted storks and they were ideal for testing my lens. It seems that the lens is sharp enough. But it is slow, so I had to often push the ISO to 3200. 5D's ISO 3200 is way better than that of the 40D I had. Still its grainy, and grain removal causes a picture to lose sharpness.

Anyway, so far the lens seems good, a bit heavy though. Have to go to Fraser Hill to try again... Seriously thinking about buying a 2x Extender.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The Funambulist of Batu Caves..

Finally bought the famous/infamous Canon EF 100-400mm. Its the only affordable 400mm lens L lens with IS. Although its an "L", its no way close to my beloved 135mm f/2L. Some CA is noticable at the long end. I am worried because of the push-pull zoom design. Rumor has it, the lens behaves like a dust pump when pushed and pulled.. Let's see what happens..

Monday, July 20, 2009

Cracking the HDR Secret

Went to Morib beach with my PSPJ friends. I hated Morib last time. So when Ripi sent out the invite, I was not very excited. But then he told me that they'll try to explore the fishing village and that's considered as a interesting subject location. So I went, late by an hour. It was the same old place. Thanks to the recent hazy weather, the whole place looked dull. Around 6:30 they decided to explore the Jugra Hill, to capture sunset. This time, thanks to the cloudy horizon, shots again came very dull. So we headed back to Morib and had our group dinner before starting for KL.

Although the trip was boring, I accidentally cracked the secret of great looking HDR imaging. Ahh! Finally.. No grains nor hallows, colors are well balanced. And the picture is sharp with no artifacts.. Is my new "5D Mark II" the culprit? Hmm..
Cracking the HDR Code..

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Scott Kelby's 2nd Worldwide Photo Walk

Scott Kelby is a popular author of Photoshop books and training materials. Last year, he came up with the idea of having a worldwide photowalk. A photowalk is more like a social event, where a group of photographers gather and take pictures while following a particular route. It's nothing new. But the initiative to make it a global event helped Kebly's photowalk to draw significant attention from everywhere.

18th July was the date. KLickr group was the organzier for Kuala Lumpur. We started from Chow Kit LRT station. It was a huge gang (30+ I beileve). Although the whole idea of the photowalk was to enjoy and take photos, it became a very tiring task as it was quite hot as well as humid today.

I managed to come up with one ok kinda shot.. :(

Friday, July 17, 2009

Punishment of Larceny.. Rip Off His Eyeballs..

I hardly read the Bangladeshi newspapers. The headlines are so predictable that anybody can easily guess what will appear in the headlines. Yet, for no reason, I went to check out the internet edition of a bengali daily. And there it was, possibly the most disturbing news I've ever came across this year. The title translates, "Father forced to rip off son's eyeballs by the Village Elders".

Yes, it did happen and this is not a individual case. Since the old days, it's a popular form of punishment for larceny in many rural parts of Bangladesh. But this time, they took it to a new level, force the father to execute the horrible task. Miru, a fifteen year old boy was accused of stealing a cellphone by the Village Elders. They found him guilty and fined him 30000 taka (Roughly 400 USD). Finally, they ordered that the eyeballs of the boy be ripped off. No, this was not enough, they wanted the father to carry out this punishment otherwise he was threatened to face the same by the elders.

And as usual, nothing happened to these "Elders". As of yet, nobody's been charged with anything.

In a country where the rulers and the lawmakers have colorful records of corruption, embezzlement and criminal offenses, isn't it ironic for a petty thief to be punished in such a medieval way?

I really feel sorry for the father as well as for the boy. There's nothing I can do but to say, I'm ashamed..