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This is The Digital Story Podcast #621, Feb. 6, 2018. Today's theme is "Using Lightroom for Time-Lapse Photography" I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

One of the joys of mirrorless photography is that the cameras typically have an extensive feature set, including an interval timer for time-lapse photography. But, once we've captured the frames, what's an easy way to render the movie? Did you know that Lightroom can handle it? It can, and I explain how in today's TDS photography podcast.

Using Lightroom for Time-Lapse Photography

On my Olympus cameras, if I go to the bottom of Camera Menu 1, I can set up an interval program to capture thousands of frames over a period of time. Also, using the Cascable app's Shutter Robot, I can also set up a time-lapse program. And after a few hours, I have thousands of images on my memory card.

Timelapse-Lightroom 1024.jpg

But then what? I wanted to find an easy way to render an HD movie from those pictures, have the ability to manage and edit the frames, use software that worked on both platforms, and didn't cost me anything more than what I've already invested in my gear. The solution that surfaced: Lightroom Classic CC.

The only missing ingredient is a set of templates that you can download for free via an article on the Adobe blog titled, To the fast lane of time-lapse with Photoshop Lightroom.

Once you have the templates installed in the Slideshow module, you can take all those frames you've captured and convert them into an HD movie.

If you want to see the time lapse that I created, you can watch it here.

I've also published a 16-minute video tutorial for our Inner Circle Members that walks you through all the steps. After watching that, you'll be ready to create your own time-lapse movie with Lightroom.

New! TheFilmCameraProject on Instagram

I've started a new Instagram feed just for film camera lovers. It's called TheFilmCameraProject, and it's for those who appreciate the beauty of analog SLRs.

And to celebrate the launch, I'm giving away one Pentax SLR and lens to one lucky follower of TheFilmCameraProject. All you have to do is follow the feed by Feb. 28, 2018. I'll then do a random drawing and announce the winner on the March 6 podcast. Join in the fun, and get to admire some really beautiful camera along the way.

Layers in Capture One Pro 11

We have our first Nimble Class this coming Saturday, Layers in Capture One Pro 11.

The headline new feature in Capture One Pro 11 is the redesigned layers area for localized editing. In this classroom, Derrick Story shows you best practices for working with layers in Capture One Pro 11. Class participants may submit their unique questions before class, allowing Derrick to incorporate that content into his teaching. And there will be live Q&A sessions throughout the course.

The San Francisco Street Photography Workshop Update

Reservation forms have been sent to Reserve List members. If you signed up on the Reserve List, but didn't receive an invite, please email me.

San Francisco Street Photography - April 26-28, 2018 - We'll work entirely on location in San Francisco. Our hotel in picturesque Union Square will serve as our headquarters during the event. No rental car will be necessary. We'll explore the City's hidden treasures and capture them through our lenses. As always, we're adding new shooting locations again this year, including twilight assignments. This is San Francisco like you've never seen it before. And as a bonus, Olympus Visionary Mike Boening will be joining the teaching staff and leading sessions on street shooting and night photography. Two instructors, three days, and all for just $695. (That's right, it's 3 full days in one of the most photogenic cities in the U.S.)

Updates and Such

I now have the dates for the Sonoma Country Hot Air Balloon and Drone Photography Workshop, June 8-10, 2018. We're combining two very fun aerial activities into one workshop. Be sure to get on the Reserve List for this one!

The latest training videos posted for our Inner Circle members are processing aerial photographs in Luminar and using Lightroom for time-lapse photography.

You can become a member of our Inner Circle by clicking on this link or by clicking on the Patreon tile that's on every page of The Digital Story.

B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

See you next week!

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

Videoblocks - Go to videoblocks.com/digitalstory to get all the stock video, audio, and images that you can imagine for just $149. Save on millions of studio-quality clips, tracks, and graphics.

Red River Paper - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

The Nimbleosity Report

Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

Want to Comment on this Post?

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

Cropped Lenses on Full Frame Cameras

There are a lot of rules in photography that we just follow. Yes, they are based on some technical merit, but maybe we're overlooking creative possibilities by blindly adhering to them. For example, the notion that one should never use a cropped lens on a full frame camera. Have you looked in to this for your brand?

9501_03-TFP124-whole-foods.jpg "Shopping Day" - Pentax DA 20-40mm zoom at 20mm on a Pentax Program Plus body, Fuji Superia 400 film. Photo by Derrick Story.

I have this lens that I just absolutely love - the Pentax DA 20-40mm zoom. It's my go-to optic for my Pentax KP DSLR with a cropped sensor.

P1185687-pentax-ZX5n-whole-foods.jpg

I also do a lot of film work with Pentax SLRs. Why can't I use some of my favorite DA optics for those cameras as well? Why should I have to pay big bucks to get a full frame 20mm optic when I already have one? I did some checking online and learned that it won't damage my cameras or my optics. (Canon shooters, I don't think you can do this: EF vs EF-S. Do your research.)

So I mounted the Pentax DA 20-40mm zoom on my film SLRs and started shooting. And the results are terrific.

The only downside, as you already know, is some vignetting. It's more pronounced in some pictures than others, depending on focal length, aperture, and lighting. There are times when I actually like the effect, and others where I have to downplay it in software. In the case of the "Shopping Day" photo, I like it.

The bottom line is, now I have my entire lens arsenal available for all of my cameras. And depending on the brand you shoot, you too may have more options than you realize.

But please: Do your research first (I did). Not all brands have the same lens compatibility that Pentax does. Be sure that you are not going to damage your equipment. Safety first, right? But if there isn't a physical reason why you shouldn't put a cropped lens on a full frame body, then why not experiment?

If you have any experiences with your brand that you'd like to share, please post a comment on our TDS Facebook page where I'll have this story.

Moonset Over Santa Rosa

I had a special treat this morning for my predawn walk - an eclipse shining over Santa Rosa. I had my Olympus PEN-F with the wonderful Olympus 45mm f/1.2 PRO lens that enabled me to capture a number of images handheld, wide open.

Moon Over Santa Rosa "Moonset Over Santa Rosa" - Photo by Derrick Story

The exposure was 1/15th at f/1.2 with an ISO of 1600. In my rush to capture this moonscape, I had my file format set to Jpeg instead of RAW, something that I did not realize until I uploaded the files to the computer.

"Hey, where are the RAWs? Oh Snap!"

Fortunately, the Jpegs are pretty good on the PEN-F. And my manual exposure setting was accurate. So no real harm done. Just goes to show that photography at 6am does have its challenges.

Moon-Over-Home.jpg

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

This is The Digital Story Podcast #620, Jan. 30, 2018. Today's theme is "Camera or Computer?" I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

Digital photography is this murky mix of technology and art. We see a picture, press the shutter, and record it. Then what? Unless we're using a smartphone, something else needs to happen. And that something is firing up a computer to complete our image. Since it's a noteworthy part of the process, why do we treat it like tires on a car? I explore that in today's TDS podcast.

Camera or Computer?

iMac-1024-V2.jpg

If I were to give you $1,000 right now and say that you could spend it on either a new camera, or a new computer, which are you likely to choose? My informal research has led me to the belief that you would choose a camera or a lens.

Why is this? I have five theories why when it comes to camera or computer, we choose camera.

  • Theory #1 - Computers suck.
  • Theory #2 - They are more utilitarian than cameras.
  • Theory #3 - Computers are messy.
  • Theory #4 - Computers are not as much fun.
  • Theory #1 - If we could live without computers we would. But we would never give up our cameras..

One of the reasons why we feel this way, however, is that we tend to hang on to old hardware while constantly adding new software. If we stayed a bit more current, our experience should be better, and in the end we'd be more efficient and happy. Maybe.

A Review of the Olympus Super Fan Weekend in San Francisco

This past Friday, I spent a day with the Olympus community for their Super Fan Event in San Francisco. Here's what I learned.

The San Francisco Street Photography Workshop

San Francisco Street Photography - April 26-28, 2018 - We'll work entirely on location in San Francisco. Our hotel in picturesque Union Square will serve as our headquarters during the event. No rental car will be necessary. We'll explore the City's hidden treasures and capture them through our lenses. As always, we're adding new shooting locations again this year, including twilight assignments. This is San Francisco like you've never seen it before. And as a bonus, Olympus Visionary Mike Boening will be joining the teaching staff and leading sessions on street shooting and night photography. Two instructors, three days, and all for just $695. (That's right, it's 3 full days in one of the most photogenic cities in the U.S.)

The 2018 Nimble Classroom Series

The 2018 Nimble Classroom Series begins in February. Here are the first three sessions:

  • Layers in Capture One Pro 11 - Feb. 10
  • BUILD YOUR DIGITAL DARKROOM WITH PHOTOS - MARCH 10
  • Digital Asset Mgmt with Luminar - April 21

You can sign up right now for each of these and reserve your spot. Only 6 participants per class.

Updates and Such

Three new training videos are now posted for our Patreon Inner Circle Members:

  • Tips for Importing Images into Photos for macOS
  • Using Gradient Masks in Luminar
  • Working with Light Adjustments in Capture One Pro

You can become a member of our Inner Circle by clicking on this link or by clicking on the Patreon tile that's on every page of The Digital Story.

B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

See you next week!

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

Videoblocks - Go to videoblocks.com/digitalstory to get all the stock video, audio, and images that you can imagine for just $149. Save on millions of studio-quality clips, tracks, and graphics.

Red River Paper - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

The Nimbleosity Report

Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

Want to Comment on this Post?

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

Olympus Super Fan Event, San Francisco

How many times have you gone to a movie or tried a restaurant because a friend suggested it? Personal recommendations are powerful. We know that, and so does Olympus. And this past weekend they wanted to acknowledge the efforts of some of their super fans in North America. I was there to cover the event.

One of the stops during super fan weekend was Muir Woods, just north of San Francisco. Photos by Derrick Story.

In terms of participants, it was an interesting mingling of Olympus Visionaries (top photographers who embrace the brand), Olympus marketing and technical staff, and a dozen super fans from throughout the country. They were all brought together in San Francisco for briefings, exchange of ideas, and making images with Olympus gear.

One of the first things that I noticed while working with these photographers was just how knowledgable they were about micro four thirds photography. They understood how to set up their cameras to make beautiful images. I learned a number of tips from them.

These are enthusiasts who organize user groups, build followings online, take on assignments, and sometimes even have freelance businesses on the side. Essentially, when they're not at their day jobs, they live and breath photography.

Olympus realizes how important these customers are to their community. And I think they've learned a lot over the years conducting their "experientials" for the press. Now, they're designing similar events for the influencers who promote their brand and products at the grassroots level.

Riding the Golden Gate Ferry from Sausalito to San Francisco. Photos by Derrick Story.

The exchange of ideas that flow over the course the day are invaluable to everyone involved. Olympus staff have a chance to hear directly from customers while they work together in the field. The super fans get to test new gear, ask questions, and learn more about the company.

These experientials are a substantial investment by Olympus. But they help the company stay in touch with its users while at the same time acknowledging their efforts.

OlympusSFEvent-Jan-2018.jpg Olympus staff and super fans returning from a day of micro four thirds photography in the bay area. Photo by Derrick Story.

If you want to get more involved, visit the Inspiration pages on the Olympus site and check out the photo contests and upcoming events. The hashtag for this super fan event is #CapturingSanFrancisco (if you want to see more). Use the hashtag #getolympus when posting photos online captured with Olympus gear. Follow Olympus on Twitter and Facebook. They also have a terrific Instagram feed.

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

Photos for macOS High Sierra has many functions that might surprise enthusiast photographers who underestimate its power. One of my favorite timesavers is Copy and Paste Adjustments. Here's a video that shows how to use it.

Copy and paste adjustments from Photos for macOS High Sierra Essential Training by Derrick Story

This function is particularly helpful when you have a series of images captured under similar lighting conditions. Edit the first photo in the sequence, copy the adjustments (Image > Copy Adjustments) then navigate to the next shot to paste them (Image > Paste Adjustments).

copy-adjustments.png

I find it helpful to turn on thumbnails (View > Show Thumbnails) so I can navigate from one shot to the next while remaining in Edit mode. You don't have to click the Done button until you've finished with the entire batch.

Using Copy and Paste Adjustments is a great way to speed up your workflow. Give it a try.

New Photos for macOS High Sierra Training!

Is it time for you to learn the ins and outs of the latest version of Photos? Take a look at Photos for macOS High Sierra Essential Training on LinkedIn Learning, or on lynda.com. Maximize your iPhone photography and complement the work you do with your mirrorless cameras as well. You'll love your cameras even more...

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

Why the Mavic Air is Brilliant

The future of enthusiast drone photography is unfolding, literally, before our eyes with the DJI Mavic Air, $799.

mavic-air.jpg

The movement took off with the diminutive DJI Spark, $399, which is a great aircraft for casual users such as myself. The Spark is compact, affordable, and well-designed. But it lacks features that enthusiast drone photographers want, such as RAW capture, a 3-axis gimble, 4K video, longer flight time, and internal memory... all of which the Mavic Air has, and in a package that folds smaller than the Spark.

Outdoor and adventure photographers now have an aircraft that they can stash in their backpacks that delivers top-notch images and video - and to be honest, at a price that seems reasonable to me.

DJI has their fingers on pulse of this growing market. Many Spark users who were recently introduced to the excitement of aerial photography will likely upgrade to the Mavic Air. Others, who have been holding out for portability and specification, will likely be tempted by this latest announcement.

For me, I'm still quite happy with my Spark. But if I ever needed to elevate my aerial photography, the Mavic Air would most likely be my choice.

More About the DJI Spark

DJI Spark: The Nimble Drone.

Elevated Panoramas with the DJI Spark

The DJI Spark, 6 Months Later

New DJI Spark Firmware.

Exporting a Single Frame from Video

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

This is The Digital Story Podcast #619, Jan. 23, 2018. Today's theme is "Oh, The Assumptions We Make." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

Assumptions aren't always a bad thing. In our fast-paced world, they can save us time as we move from decision to decision. But we also know that assumptions can get us in trouble, or at least lead us down the wrong path. Photography is not immune to this shortcoming, and that's the topic for today's show.

Oh, The Assumptions We Make

Not long ago, I purchased a beautiful used Pentax-FA 50mm f/1.4 lens. I was looking for a fast prime to use on both my film cameras as well as DSLR bodies, and this optic, at least on paper, seemed to fit the bill.

pentax-50mm-web.jpg

First I mounted it on a Program Plus and shot a half dozen 35mm frames with it. Then I put it on my KP DSLR and snapped a photo with it wide open at f/1.4. When I review the image on the LCD, I thought something must be wrong. It didn't look very sharp. I recorded another frame with the same result.

My immediate assumption was that I had received a "bad copy." A wave of sadness came over me. It was such a beautiful lens, and I had purchased it for only $125. Fortunately, I decided to dig a little deeper, and here's what I discovered... (story concludes on the podcast).

Here are some other assumptions to be leary of...

  • Larger camera sensors are always better.
  • Primes are always sharper than zooms.
  • I must always shoot at a low ISO.
  • RAWs are always better than Jpegs.
  • Real photographers (pros) only shoot with Nikons and Canons.
  • DJI Mavic Air leaked ahead of announcement, looks like a Spark-Mavic hybrid

    DP Review writes: If these leaked photos and specifications are accurate, the Mavic Air will put Mavic-level hardware--a 3-axis gimbal, 1/2.3-inch CMOS sensor, 4K 60p video capture, obstacle-avoidance sensors on the front, back, and bottom--into a body that looks very much like the diminutive DJI Spark. The upside is that 4K 60p video capture that the Mavic Pro and even Mavic Pro Platium has been missing; the downside is that the smaller body means even less flight time, which is rumored at just 21 minutes. The drone is also purported to have a 32MP panorama mode.

    Velbon launches the Chairpod, a tripod-chair hybrid (no, really)

    Digital Camera World reports: We all love photography, but sometimes it's also nice to sit down. Well, thanks to Japanese manufacturer Velbon, these two pursuits need no longer be enjoyed separately.

    Here, we present the Chairpod HY127, reported in Japanese publication DC Watch (translated version here). Able to extend to a maximum height of 1.28m with the addition of an extension rod, the Chairpod integrates a tripod and a folding chair, which allows the photographer - well, at least, a photographer that weighs less than 80kg (176 pounds), which is the maximum weight it'll support - to shoot while sitting.

    The San Francisco Street Photography Workshop

    San Francisco Street Photography - April 26-28, 2018 - We'll work entirely on location in San Francisco. Our hotel in picturesque Union Square will serve as our headquarters during the event. No rental car will be necessary. We'll explore the City's hidden treasures and capture them through our lenses. As always, we're adding new shooting locations again this year, including twilight assignments. This is San Francisco like you've never seen it before. And as a bonus, Olympus Visionary Mike Boening will be joining the teaching staff and leading sessions on street shooting and night photography. Two instructors, three days, and all for just $695. (That's right, it's 3 full days in one of the most photogenic cities in the U.S.)

    The 2018 Nimble Classroom Series

    The 2018 Nimble Classroom Series begins in February. Here are the first three sessions:

    • Layers in Capture One Pro 11 - Feb. 10
    • BUILD YOUR DIGITAL DARKROOM WITH PHOTOS - MARCH 10
    • Digital Asset Mgmt with Luminar - April 21

    You can sign up right now for each of these and reserve your spot. Only 6 participants per class.

    Updates and Such

    Three new training videos are now posted for our Patreon Inner Circle Members:

    • Tips for Importing Images into Photos for macOS
    • Using Gradient Masks in Luminar
    • Working with Light Adjustments in Capture One Pro

    You can become a member of our Inner Circle by clicking on this link or by clicking on the Patreon tile that's on every page of The Digital Story.

    B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

    And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

    See you next week!

    More Ways to Participate

    Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

    Podcast Sponsors

    Videoblocks - Go to videoblocks.com/digitalstory to get all the stock video, audio, and images that you can imagine for just $149. Save on millions of studio-quality clips, tracks, and graphics.

    Red River Paper - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

    The Nimbleosity Report

    Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

    Want to Comment on this Post?

    You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

The DJI Spark, 6 Months Later

Six months ago I was a drone newbie. I had never flown one, didn't know the rules, and the whole project seemed daunting. But I was curious. The photo opportunities were intriguing.

dji-spark-1024.jpg

Then DJI released the Spark. And I knew that my time for aerial photography had come. I got my hands on one immediately.

At first, I didn't know exactly what I was going to do with it. I had to learn how to fly it. DJI makes that relatively easy. The navigation system is terrific. I use my iPhone as the controller. (It's really nice with the iPhone X.)

But there were rules and regulations to learn. That part was a bit more thorny. I consider myself a responsible pilot. But it does take restraint at times. There are so many places that I want to fly that I just cannot.

And I had to figure out, how did I want to use this new tool? How will it mesh with the other pictures I take? This exploration has become the most exciting part.

spark-DJI_0001-Pano.jpg

I've become enamored with the panorama feature of the Spark. It's amazing. Because of the precise navigation electronics, the drone is a perfect capture device for building big pictures from above. I can choose horizontal framings, vertical, or spherical. All of them are interesting and at times useful, but my favorite is the horizontal panorama.

Once I position the aircraft and set the capture sequence in motion, it's fun to watch its robot-like maneuvers as it positions itself to record each frame. I can preview the stitched image with the DJI software, but the best results come later when I use Lightroom's Photo Merge technology.

What I've discovered is that the Spark fills a gap in my visual storytelling. I'm pretty good at covering my subject from different angles. But the one from above was always missing. And having it now completes many of my essays.

I'm still a terrible pilot. I keep telling myself I need to practice flying more. But I'm adept enough to get the shots that I need. And 6 months later, I have to say that the Spark is an important part of my photo kit. It's here to stay.

More About the DJI Spark

DJI Spark: The Nimble Drone.

Elevated Panoramas with the DJI Spark

The DJI Spark, 6 Months Later

New DJI Spark Firmware.

Exporting a Single Frame from Video

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

One of the joys of mirrorless photography is the camera's ability to accept a variety of classic SLR optics. In my case, when I want to scratch a creative itch, I like to mount one of my Pentax K or Zeiss Contax lenses on to my Olympus PEN-F (not to mention the occasional film camera itself).

Some photographers don't realize that there are a wide variety of adapters ranging from budget priced to top shelf, and that it's very easy to find exactly the right one for you. Here's how to do it.

lens-adapter.jpg

Start by visiting this B&H Adapter page. At first you'll see numerous options for practically every camera and lens. But you can narrow the results quickly.

Go to the left column and scroll through the options under Camera Fitting. In my case, I go to "4/3rd Micro." Check the box next to the camera type you want to adapt to. Then go to Lens Fitting. I selected "Pentax K" because that is the optical mount that I want to adapt to my Olympus mirrorless camera. Now scan the results in the browser window, and select the best option for you.

8585_08_pentax-135mm-leah.jpg Pentax-M 135mm f/3.5 portrait lens.

You probably already have a few favorite SLR lenses collecting dust in the closet. Prime optics are my favorite for adapting. In my own collection, I often choose a Pentax K 50mm f/1.4, Zeiss Contax 85mm f/2.8, or Pentax K 135mm f/3.5 (compact with built-in lens hood... sweet!) because I like to use these for portrait work. They meld their unique analog character to the preciseness of digital capture.

Also, there are many great vintage optics available on the market for affordable prices. Take a look at cool used lens page as an example.

Generally speaking, working with adapted lenses means shooting wide open and manually focusing. But now we're also seeing adapters that bring more functionality to SLR optics (but at a price of course). It all depends on what you're after.

Personally, I enjoy the process of controlling the focus and letting the lens apply its magic at maximum aperture. I find it creatively energizing. I hope you explore this world as well. It's a beautiful place!

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.