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This is The Digital Story Podcast #930, Jan. 16, 2024. Today's theme is "Looking Back and More, Now 2024." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

Every January I close out my personal photo library from the previous year and start fresh with an empty catalog. Not only is this a practical endeavor, it's also an opportunity to acknowledge the highlights of the previous year. Today, I share the benefits of this annual exercise. I hope you enjoy the show.

Digital Photography Podcast 930

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Looking Back and More, Now 2024

2023-in-review-1024.jpg

Despite my trials and tribulations in the past with Apple's Aperture, I still create annual libraries and store the neatly bundled catalogs in my multi-level archival system.

Why? It's just the way my brain works. I measure my life's journey signpost by signpost, year by year. Plus, I've discovered some additional benefits to this practice, a few of which I'm going to share today.

The Technical Part

By way of review, I maintain two personal libraries. The first, Photos, is totally automatic. I take a picture with my iPhone, it's added to my Photos library, backed up in iCloud, and that's that.

But I also have a Capture One Catalog. Pictures from my OM-1, X100V, and Nikon Zf are stored and edited here. Compared to the iPhone catalog, these images are more measured, captured in RAW, edited with C1P's excellent adjustment tools, and organized using its catalog tools.

Often, there is some topic duplication between the catalogs. And this is a good thing. Let's take our workshop in Sedona, AZ for example. My iPhone pictures go directly into Photos, while the images from the OM-1 are stored in Capture One Pro.

If I want to locate a shoot from years past, I can rely on the A.I. object recognition tools in Photos to help me remember the month and year. Who knows, I might even have an image there that suits my needs.

But if I want the more "serious" shots, I know exactly which Capture One Catalog to open. It saves me a tremendous amount of time. And it allows me to rotate off my laptop drive those big image libraries from previous years.

The Fun Part

So the technical part is all good and well. Every one of us has our own system for managing and retrieving pictures. But I've discovered an added benefit too. One that I hadn't anticipated.

It's easy to forget how much cool stuff happens in just a single year. Sure, we may still be basking in the glow of an event from last week, or even last month. But a couple of seasons ago. Those can get buried beneath the rigors of day-to-day life.

This short stroll down memory lane reminds me that 2023 was a better year than I realized. And it helps me appreciate the good fortune of my life. Want to join me for a quick trip?

[review highlights from my 2023 catalog.]

As a result of this exercise, I have a much more complete memory of my past year. Sure it had its challenges. There's a substantial 8-week lull when I was laid up with my recovery from the total joint replacement in my hip. But I still managed to take pictures around the house to maintain my sanity.

We are so busy, so distracted, and at times, so frustrated with daily life. It's easy to lose perspective. But looking back on my past year in pictures adds balance to my view of 2023. And it helps me appreciate the good moments in life all the more.

The Camera Accessory That Saved My Workflow? Peak Design Tech Pouch Review

You can read the entire article on FStoppers.com

If you're like me, you have a whole bunch of small photography bits--cables, connectors, SD cards, batteries, and more--in your camera bag. If you were to use a different bag, you'd have to take all of them out and transfer them over. That's how I lived for the first couple of years of my career, and it was awful.

I would always be triple- and quadruple-checking to make sure I had everything, sometimes forgetting which pocket I had moved it to and having to dig around in a panic. That's when I had to find a better way. Enter the Peak Design Tech Pouch.

For months, I started looking at different tech organizers to ideally hold all the random bits that I had between my camera bags. At the time, there were fewer competitors to the tech pouch. What I saw with the others was that they were either more tech/note organizers for office workers carrying far fewer things at once, or they were full sling bags, and I really wasn't looking for either. All I wanted was a simple organizer with photographers in mind that could handle all my random crap and move it seamlessly between bags.

While it is larger than other tech organizers, I find the size just about perfect to fit in the extra space of a camera bag. It's not so big that it's in the way of other gear that you could be carrying. It's also not too small that it can't carry everything that you need it to.

Having used this for a few years now, I can confirm that it is built to last. I try to be gentle with my gear as I like it to last a while, but I definitely don't baby things. Through all the time of use, this bag hardly has a blemish on it, let alone any substantial damage. All the external and internal zips work great, and still keep things dry if it's a rainier day.

Spring in Sedona Photography Workshop

April 16-19, 2024 - TDS photographers return to the greater Sedona, AZ area, but this time during the Spring to view the landscape in a whole new way. We will explore iconic locations, picturesque landscapes, mysterious vortexes, and towns frozen in time from the mining days. What a great way to kick off our 2024 workshop season!

You can learn more and reserve your spot by clicking here. Hope to see you in April!

The 'Millennium Camera' Will Capture Arizona's Landscape for 1,000 Years

You can read the entire article on PetaPixel.com

An experiment organized by University of Arizona research associate and experimental philosopher Jonathan Keats, the Millennium Camera is meant to record an extremely long-exposure image that won't be complete for 100 decades.

The concept of the camera isn't too far removed from the beer can camera that Regina Valkenborgh set up at the Bayfordbury Observatory in the United Kingdom in 2012. In that case, the pinhole-style camera was in place for eight years and one month and captured what was at the time believed to be the longest exposure photo ever made.

If it works as planned, Keats' Millennium Camera will have that record beat by a lot more. It uses a similar pinhole design as Valkenborgh's beer can camera, but has elements made to extend the time the camera will operate. That pinhole leads to a thin sheet of 24-karat gold that will slowly let light through to a small copper cylinder mounted on top of a steel pole. Over the course of 1,000 years, the landscape in front of the pinhole camera will slowly fade a light-sensitive surface that is coated in thin layers of rose madder (an oil paint pigment), The University of Arizona explains.

In 100 decades, future humans will hopefully be able to open the Millennium Camera to reveal a long-exposure image of the area through all of the changes Tuscon will undergo. That is, of course, the hope anyway.

"One thousand years is a long time and there are so many reasons why this might not work," Keats says. "The camera might not even be around in a millennium. There are forces of nature and decisions people make, whether administrative or criminal, that could result in the camera not lasting."

If it does work, however, Keats says that the final image will likely show the longest-lasting features -- like mountains and rocks -- sharpest while the most dynamic parts such as the city itself will be softer. "Sharp" is also used loosely, as the land itself is not completely stable and will experience subtle motion over the extended exposure time.

The Millennium Camera is currently installed on Tumamoc Hill next to a bench that faces west over the Star Pass neighborhood of Tuscon. With it is a small plaque that encourages visitors to imagine what the future holds.

Virtual Camera Club News

The Nimble Photographer Newsletter is now publishing every Thursday. Readers will enjoy a variety of content spanning from short photo essays, to commentary on weekly events, to reviews of the latest and coolest photo gear.

TDS Workshops! - You can sign up for available workshops by visiting The Nimble Photographer. Inner Circle Members receive a 10-percent discount on all events.

Inner Circle Members: A big thanks to those who support our podcast and our efforts! We are having a blast at our new Inner Circle hangout, the private group I've set up at DerrickStoryOnline. We'd love it if you join us. You can become an Inner Circle Member by signing up at our Patreon site. You will automatically be added to the new hangout.

Great Photography Articles on Live View - If you check out our publication and appreciate what you see, be sure to follow us and clap for those authors. You can find us at medium.com/live-view.

If you're interested in writing for Live View, drop me a line at dstory@gmail.com.

The New Donation Kit for Carefree Shipping of Found Film Cameras - If you've discovered a film camera that's no longer being used, our new Donation Kit makes it easy to pack and ship. Just visit the Contact Form on thenimblephotographer.com, click the box next to Donating a Film Camera, and let me know what you have. In your note, be sure to include your shipping address.

Affiliate Links - The links to some products in this podcast contain an affiliate code that credits The Digital Story for any purchases made from B&H Photo and Amazon via that click-through. Depending on the purchase, we may receive some financial compensation.

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

See you next week!

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

The Nikkor Z 26mm f/2.8 pancake has been a polarizing lens. Those who really like it, such as myself, appreciate its compactness and terrific image quality. While others think it's too slow focusing and noisy.

IMG_0730.jpeg 26mm Z with included lens hood on a Nikon Zf.

After spending some time with this wide angle on my Nikon Zf full-frame mirrorless camera, I can say that the 26mm has been wonderful for travel, street photography, and events. Let's take a closer look to see what you think.

IMG_0747.jpeg 26mm Z, no lens hood, mounted on a Nikon Zf.

What I Like About the Nikkor Z 26mm

  • Compact (0.9" long)
  • Wide Angle of View (79 degrees)
  • Bright Maximum Aperture (f/2.8)
  • Dust and Drip Resistant
  • Metal Lens Mount and Solid Construction
  • Outstanding Center Sharpness
  • Close Focusing Capability Is Very Useful
  • Includes Clever Lens Hood and Slip-On Cap
  • Looks Fantastic on the Nikon Zf

What I Don't Like About the Nikkor Z 26mm

Some reviewers have complained about the focusing noise. Yes, you can hear it - not so much on the street, but sitting in a quiet room. So I would say that this isn't an optic for weddings and funerals. But for my purposes, noise isn't an issue.

Another complaint I've read is that it is slow-focusing. For example, if you compare it to the Nikkor Z 50mm f/1.8 S ($626 and 3" long), the 26mm will be slower. It's even slower than my Nikkor Z 24mm-50mm zoom. That being said, I don't think I lost one shot in San Francisco due to its focusing ability. My recommendation is that you don't use it for fast-action photography.

Photography is about tradeoffs - figuring out what you need for a shoot, and what you can live without. In my view, the Nikkor Z 26mm f/2.8 is well-suited for travel photography, urban work, and most events. Its pluses are compactness, a relatively fast aperture, and excellent sharpness.

Bottom Line

Once you recover from having spent $200 more than you would have for the Nikkor Z 28mm f/2.8 lens, you're likely going to be happy with your investment. The 26mm f/2.8 is a gem of a lens. It makes full-frame photography so much more portable. And the images it produces are beautiful.

A Few Pictures with the Nikkor Z 26mm on a Nikon Zf

ZF1_1319-12-03 San Francisco Zf-1024.jpg

ZF1_1289-12-03 San Fran-1024-V2.jpg

ZF1_1414-12-03 San Francisco Zf-1024.jpg

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Photos by Derrick Story.

This is The Digital Story Podcast #929, Jan. 9, 2024. Today's theme is "The Elephant in the Room - Nikon Zf vs Olympus OM-1." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

Typically, Micro Four Thirds photographers aren't concerned by new full-frame camera announcements. They know what they have, and they like it. But the Nikon Zf seems to have upset the apple cart a bit. I've been getting mail citing reviews, defections, and the relevance of MFT photography in light of all this. So let's talk about it. Let's go head to head with the Olympus OM-1 and Nikon Zf. Today's top story on the TDS Photography Podcast. I hope you enjoy the show.

Digital Photography Podcast 929

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The Elephant in the Room - Nikon Zf vs Olympus OM-1

Zf-vs-OM1-1024.jpeg

Let's set the stage a bit for this comparison. The OM System OM-1 was released in March 2022. It has a Micro Four Thirds sensor and is currently selling for $1,999.

The Nikon Zf started shipping in October 2023, employs a full-frame sensor, and is currently available for $1,996.

Even though the two cameras use completely different sensors, they are competitors. They cost about the same, appeal to serious enthusiasts, have appealing body designs, and are packed with the latest that imaging technology has to offer.

But they are very different cameras in many ways too. So let's take a look at their respective strengths and compare them.

OM System OM-1 Strengths

  • Telephoto Muscle - Anything over 105mm usually means the OM-1. My favorite combination is the 40-150mm f/2.8 with or without the 1.4X teleconverter.
  • Macro Photography - The Micro Four Thirds System is just so good at close-up photography. I have both the 60mm and 30mm macros.
  • Inclement Weather - I'm comfortable shooting with the OM-1 in just about any environment. It's a robust companion during outdoor adventures.
  • Long Days - If I'm going to be on my feet with gear for the bulk of the day, I want the OM System.
  • Carry-On Air Travel - I can put together a kit for an entire trip in a bag about the size of a kid's lunchbox - and have everything I need.
  • Clever Technology - Live ND, Live Time, Live Composite, in-camera focus stacking, are all examples of the cool tech OM System includes in their cameras.
  • More Lenses - Not only does the Micro Four Thirds lens catalog feature practically any optic that I could need, it also usually has multiple versions of it in different sizes and maximum apertures.

Nikon Zf Strengths

  • Street Photography - I know it sounds weird, but I prefer the Zf for street photography and urban exploration. With the pancake 26mm f/2.8 and the compact 24-50mm zoom, the camera has a nice balance and can work just about any angle.
  • Low Light Situations - I've never had a camera where I could increase the ISO to 25,600 without a second thought about quality.
  • Vintage Lenses - Nothing comes close to the Zf for vintage lens work. With the FTZ II adapter, I can use my Steve McCurry 105mm f/2.5 tele one moment, and the wonderful Nikkor G 24-85mm zoom the next. With no crop factor to contend with, the lens I put on there is the lens I get.
  • Portrait Assignments - I had been using the Nikon D610 for portrait work, a camera that I still very much like, but the Zf is an entirely different planet. Features like built-in Skin Softening and Portrait Enhancement make the job so much easier.
  • Aestetics - In my opinion, only the Olympus PEN-F rivals the handsome looks of the Nikon Zf.

Why Switching Doesn't Make Sense

I could never imagine a scenario when I would sell all of my Olympus gear to bulk up the Nikon Z system. For me, it would be like saying that I'm going to sell my pliers to buy a screwdriver.

But depending on what type of photographer you are, you may feel that you need a little bit of both. I realize that this is a total luxury. But as long as I'm traveling for photography workshops, covering events, and working in the unpredictable outdoors, I will be using my OM-1 system.

At the same time, I loved shooting with the Nikon Zf in San Francisco, capturing portraits with it for a recent article, and walking into a darkened haunted house, then emerging with incredible shots for the customer.

I wouldn't recommend investing in pricy, hefty full-frame telephotos for the Z System. Compact wide angles and short zooms are a better fit. When it's time to go to Safari West this coming Autumn for a workshop, I'll be packing the OM-1 with 40-150mm f/2.8 zoom, and the 1.4X teleconverter.

Now, I think OM System can quiet a lot of this chatter by releasing a great camera (or two) in 2024. In the meantime, if you own an OM-1 and are happy with it, ignore the switchers. And if your budget allows for another camera, I think the Zf would be a lovely complement to your existing system.

Basic Lens Kit for Each Camera

For the OM-1, I have a super-compact kit that includes the 14-42mm EZ Olympus zoom, Panasonic Lumix G X Vario 12-35mm f/2.8 II, 45mm f/1.8 Olympus prime, and the 35-100mm Panasonic zoom.

For the Nikon Zf I'm packing the 26mm f/2.8 pancake, 40mm f/2.0 SE, 24-50mm compact zoom, and the Nikon G 24-85mm zoom with the FTZ II adapter.

How To Turn Your Apple Watch Into A Camera Remote And Timer

You can read the entire article on SlashGear.com

How many times do you use your iPhone camera in a day? If you're a photography enthusiast, content creator, or just someone who loves collecting snapshots of their favorite memories, you've probably answered "a lot." It's no surprise, though, considering the quality of the output and the many nifty photo editing features built into the iPhone. However, if you're using your iPhone camera a lot, then you're probably also familiar with the all too frustrating problem of wanting to pose a few meters away but being unable to run back and forth to set up your iPhone's camera timer´┐Żover and over. It can be quite a chore no doubt, especially when you're out and about and don't have the luxury of bringing a tripod with a remote.

Fortunately, the Apple Watch has your back. This versatile device on your wrist can actually double as a camera remote and timer for your iPhone, so you won't have to waste a good photo or video opportunity ever again. Here's a quick guide on how to use it as such.

Spring in Sedona Photography Workshop

April 16-19, 2024 - TDS photographers return to the greater Sedona, AZ area, but this time during the Spring to view the landscape in a whole new way. We will explore iconic locations, picturesque landscapes, mysterious vortexes, and towns frozen in time from the mining days. What a great way to kick off our 2024 workshop season!

You can learn more and reserve your spot by clicking here. Hope to see you in April!

Follow Up to My Escape to San Francisco

During last week's podcast I discussed how I had come down with a serious case of cabin fever, and my plan to overcome it. I'm happy to report that the therapy treatment in San Francisco solved the problem.

If you want to read about my adventure, and see all the pictures, check out this free link to my article titled, 26mm and Be There.

It's amazing how therapeutic a photo shoot can be.

Virtual Camera Club News

The Nimble Photographer Newsletter is now publishing every Thursday. Readers will enjoy a variety of content spanning from short photo essays, to commentary on weekly events, to reviews of the latest and coolest photo gear.

TDS Workshops! - You can sign up for available workshops by visiting The Nimble Photographer. Inner Circle Members receive a 10-percent discount on all events.

Inner Circle Members: A big thanks to those who support our podcast and our efforts! We are having a blast at our new Inner Circle hangout, the private group I've set up at DerrickStoryOnline. We'd love it if you join us. You can become an Inner Circle Member by signing up at our Patreon site. You will automatically be added to the new hangout.

Great Photography Articles on Live View - If you check out our publication and appreciate what you see, be sure to follow us and clap for those authors. You can find us at medium.com/live-view.

If you're interested in writing for Live View, drop me a line at dstory@gmail.com.

The New Donation Kit for Carefree Shipping of Found Film Cameras - If you've discovered a film camera that's no longer being used, our new Donation Kit makes it easy to pack and ship. Just visit the Contact Form on thenimblephotographer.com, click the box next to Donating a Film Camera, and let me know what you have. In your note, be sure to include your shipping address.

Affiliate Links - The links to some products in this podcast contain an affiliate code that credits The Digital Story for any purchases made from B&H Photo and Amazon via that click-through. Depending on the purchase, we may receive some financial compensation.

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

See you next week!

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

This is The Digital Story Podcast #928, Jan. 2, 2024. Today's theme is "All Dressed Up with Nowhere to Go" I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

I have just taken my 100th portrait of the cat. All the blooms have fallen off the Christmas Cactus in the window box. As I sit here watching the rain outside, surrounded by all of this great camera gear, I'm jonesing for a photo adventure. But not today. How I plan to cope with my internment is the lead story in today's TDS Photography Podcast. I hope you enjoy the show.

Digital Photography Podcast 928

Tune-In Via Your Favorite Podcast App!


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All Dressed Up with Nowhere to Go

IMG_0713.jpeg

I feel like one of those guys with an electronic ankle bracelet, wandering around the studio with a Nikon Zf around my neck looking for something compelling to photograph.

Now I know how the cat feels. I watch her explore every corner of the living room in search of something to play with. Sometimes she lucks out and finds an unlucky bug. Poor little bugger. His minutes are numbered.

So I take a picture of the cat. She looks for spiders. And the rain keeps pouring down.

Don't get me wrong. I'm thankful for the rain. It is filling our reservoirs and adding fresh water to my open barrels in the backyard. And sometimes I even take pictures in the rain. But it isn't really fun. And it doesn't last for long.

I've figured out all sorts of cool things during my interment. I've adapted my favorite Pentax lens, the Pentax HD DA 70mm f/2.4 Limited Lens, to my OM-1. It's going to be fantastic for landscape and portraits with its 140mm equivalent focal length on my favorite all-time cropped sensor camera. But not today.

I've been testing the amazing NIKKOR Z 26mm f/2.8 pancake lens on the Nikon Zf. The combo is so addictive that I walk around the studio with it all day. But this thoroughbred needs to run. And today is not that day.

I've reorganized both of my camera kits a dozen times. Should I include the 45mm f/1.8 or the 45mm f/1.2 with the OM-1? Is there enough room for both the 40mm and 50mm in my Nikon bag? Maybe I should start over.

I even pulled out all of my tripods yesterday and started switching their heads. Now I have a Joby head on the Induro and the Induro head on the Manfrotto. Anything other than a Manfrotto head is an improvement.

Finally, after this low point, I decided that I needed to do something meaningful. And fortunately, an opportunity presented itself.

Theresa gifted me and the boys tickets to a Saturday Warriors game. I checked the weather report, and there's no rain that afternoon. So I got out my street photography black shirt, oversized jacket, and gray Warriors cap. I tucked the Zf with 26mm pancake into a softball-sized shoulder pouch that I could wear inside of my jacket, and put the iPhone 15 Pro Max in my front jeans pocket.

I'll arrive in the City a couple hours before I'm to meet the boys and engage in some serious photography. Then I'll catch the Metro T down to Mission Bay to meet the boys. My super compact pouch meets the bag requirements for Chase Center, and the short lens won't get me in trouble.

The three of us will then enjoy the game, and then I will reverse course back to the parking garage at the north end of The City, shooting pictures all along the way.

If this plan works, I will have much to report next week. Stay tuned. (I'm totally excited!)

Why One Photographer Prefers Micro Four Thirds

You can read the entire article on FStoppers.com

How Websites Have Become Practically Unuseable

A short commentary.

Virtual Camera Club News

The Nimble Photographer Newsletter is now publishing every Thursday. Readers will enjoy a variety of content spanning from short photo essays, to commentary on weekly events, to reviews of the latest and coolest photo gear.

TDS Workshops! - You can sign up for available workshops by visiting The Nimble Photographer. Inner Circle Members receive a 10-percent discount on all events.

Inner Circle Members: A big thanks to those who support our podcast and our efforts! We are having a blast at our new Inner Circle hangout, the private group I've set up at DerrickStoryOnline. We'd love it if you join us. You can become an Inner Circle Member by signing up at our Patreon site. You will automatically be added to the new hangout.

Great Photography Articles on Live View - If you check out our publication and appreciate what you see, be sure to follow us and clap for those authors. You can find us at medium.com/live-view.

If you're interested in writing for Live View, drop me a line at dstory@gmail.com.

The New Donation Kit for Carefree Shipping of Found Film Cameras - If you've discovered a film camera that's no longer being used, our new Donation Kit makes it easy to pack and ship. Just visit the Contact Form on thenimblephotographer.com, click the box next to Donating a Film Camera, and let me know what you have. In your note, be sure to include your shipping address.

Affiliate Links - The links to some products in this podcast contain an affiliate code that credits The Digital Story for any purchases made from B&H Photo and Amazon via that click-through. Depending on the purchase, we may receive some financial compensation.

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

See you next week!

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

DSCF3290-X100V-Built-In-Flash-1024.jpg

Smartphones have a lot to do with the decline of fill flash. Their wimpy LED lights are no match for intense outdoor lighting. Additionally, many mirrorless cameras don't have a built-in flash. So even if you wanted to use a strobe, you probably don't have one handy.

The problem is, there are many lighting situations where fill flash will improve your pictures. And with so many affordable external units on the market, such as the retro Godox Lux Senior, it's not a deal breaker to have a compact unit available when needed.

Plus, some cameras do have built-in flashes, such as the popular Fujifilm X100V.

So let's take a look at those situations where fill flash can improve your pictures.

Strong Backlighting

ZF1_1118-Lux-Senior-Flash-1024.jpg Nikon Zf mirrorless camera, Nikkor Z 24mm-50mm zoom, Godox Lux Senior Flash, Aperture Priority set to f/6.3, 1/60th, ISO 160.

Intense backlighting can fool the best of camera meters, resulting in an underexposed subject. And if you spot meter just on the subject's face, then the entire background gets totally blown out.

But, if you let the camera dictate the exposure, then add a fill flash, you get both background and subject, plus a nice twinkle in the eyes.

Strong Side Lighting

side-light-comparison-1024.jpg Harsh side lighting is almost impossible to control without help, as shown on the left. Adding fill flash to this scene, as shown on the right, helps tremendously.

When sunlight is pouring in from the side, it's not a good look for people shots. And sometimes you can't reposition the subjects, such as events like wedding receptions. Fortunately, adding fill flash will balance out the lighting.

DSCF3346-X100V-Built-In-Flash-1024.jpg Fujifilm X100V camera, NISI Black Mist 1/4 filter, Built-In Flash TTL Mode, Flash Exposure Compensation -0.7, Program Mode (1/200 at f/2.6), ISO 200.

This is a situation where built-in flashes, such as the one included in the X100V, can do an excellent job. I recommend using flash exposure compensation to dial back the output to -0.7. That provides a more natural look.

Brighten Up Dull Lighting

ZF1_1098-Lux-Senior-Flash-2048.jpg My sincere thanks to Victoria for her fantastic work on the other side of the camera. Fill flash with the Nikon Zf. All photos by Derrick Story.

When your subject is in shade, the lighting is even, but can be somewhat dull. You can brighten up expressions with a bit of fill flash, as shown above. Again, dial down the output a bit to render a more natural portrait.

Final Thoughts

Using a flash can help us solve difficult lighting problems. But just as important, supplemental lighting makes our subjects look good. And that's why I think it's a technique worth exploring.

This is The Digital Story Podcast #927, Dec. 26, 2023. Today's theme is "The Fourth Ingredient in a Recipe for Success." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

I was thinking about all of the great tools I have access to for my photography - sophisticated cameras, intelligent software, tons of information. And if I were only after good pictures, that's all that I would need. But what if I wanted something more? Special images require a fourth ingredient, and that's the subject of today's lead story. I hope you enjoy the show.

Digital Photography Podcast 927

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The Fourth Ingredient in a Recipe for Success

Nikon-1024.jpg

This churn began a little over a week ago when I was out for a portrait shoot in a local park. It was a beautiful late afternoon with the sun hanging low in the sky. I was working with Victoria, who had helped me out back in the Lynda.com days. I needed illustrations for an article on Fill Flash that I was writing for Live View.

I opted for the Nikon Zf and the Fujifilm X100V for the assignment. The X100 was going to be an example of cameras that have built-in flashes. And the Nikon was going to host the Godex Lux Senior external flash I had discussed a couple of weeks ago.

The point of the article was that I could have taken all of the pictures with any camera or smartphone letting the device make all of the decisions, or I could intervene by adding flash and finding the perfect output that still looked natural, but smoothed out contrast and filled in shadows.

I would start at each location by looking at the lighting and how it was illuminating Victoria, then ask myself, what could I do to make it better? In the case of the X100V, I used TTL flash, but dialed it down two-thirds of a stop. With the Nikon, I started with manual flash at half power, then increased or decreased output depending on how I liked the first exposure.

As I worked each scene, it dawned on me how much I liked this process. I own four of the most sophisticated cameras in the world - iPhone 15 Pro Max, OM System OM-1, Fujifilm X100V, and the Nikon Zf. Each one of them is capable of producing perfectly acceptable photographs in auto-everything mode.

And I love that technology. I would not give up a single feature in any of these cameras - subject detection, pro capture, sensor-based image stabilization, high ISO performance, film simulation, wireless communication, portrait enhancement, skin smoothing, and the list goes on and on.

But what really excites me is that these tools are at my disposal for when I choose to use them. I make the creative decisions, not the camera.

During that photo shoot in the park, I knew I didn't need to tap portrait enhancement or skin smoothing on the Nikon because of the lighting I had created, and Victoria's complexion didn't need it. With the X100V, I added the NISI Black Mist filter for a lovely rendering. The shots from the two cameras are different, and I like them both.

The same is true during post-processing. A.I.-powered tools are my able-bodied photo assistants, but not the creator. I refuse to relinquish control. I decide when to apply AI Noise Reduction or any of the other options.

I believe these are the best of times for photographers. We have access to 1) amazing gear, 2) sophisticated software, and 3) tons of information. But there's a fourth ingredient. Us. It's our contribution to the equation that makes a creation personal, something truly unique.

Years ago I heard this story about a lady named Kate who went back to her butcher who had recently sold her a cut that she used for corned beef. She stood at the counter and explained how difficult the meal was to chew.

The butcher respectfully listened to Kate tell her entire story. When she finished, he paused for a moment, then said, "But aye Kate, there's a little in the cookin' of it."

The "cookin' of it" is our great opportunity as artists. We have the smartest tools available to help us. But remember, they work for us, not the other way around. Let's not relinquish our power to make something truly spectacular.

Author's Note: You can see the pictures from the photo shoot and read about the technique I used by visiting The Endangered Camera Flash on Live View.

The Beloved Photography Gear That Nobody Uses Anymore

You can read the entire article on Petapixel.com

iPhone 15 Pro Wins Best Camera Award 2023

You can read the entire story on FStoppers.com

Virtual Camera Club News

The Nimble Photographer Newsletter is now publishing every Thursday. Readers will enjoy a variety of content spanning from short photo essays, to commentary on weekly events, to reviews of the latest and coolest photo gear.

TDS Workshops! - You can sign up for available workshops by visiting The Nimble Photographer. Inner Circle Members receive a 10-percent discount on all events.

Inner Circle Members: A big thanks to those who support our podcast and our efforts! We are having a blast at our new Inner Circle hangout, the private group I've set up at DerrickStoryOnline. We'd love it if you join us. You can become an Inner Circle Member by signing up at our Patreon site. You will automatically be added to the new hangout.

Great Photography Articles on Live View - If you check out our publication and appreciate what you see, be sure to follow us and clap for those authors. You can find us at medium.com/live-view.

If you're interested in writing for Live View, drop me a line at dstory@gmail.com.

The New Donation Kit for Carefree Shipping of Found Film Cameras - If you've discovered a film camera that's no longer being used, our new Donation Kit makes it easy to pack and ship. Just visit the Contact Form on thenimblephotographer.com, click the box next to Donating a Film Camera, and let me know what you have. In your note, be sure to include your shipping address.

Affiliate Links - The links to some products in this podcast contain an affiliate code that credits The Digital Story for any purchases made from B&H Photo and Amazon via that click-through. Depending on the purchase, we may receive some financial compensation.

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

See you next week!

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

This is The Digital Story Podcast #926, Dec. 19, 2023. Today's theme is "5 Photography Things I'm Thankful for in 2023." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

As we bring a tumultuous 2023 to a close, photography has once again been my island of sanity. It's the place where I can focus on the positive, create beauty, and share in the success of others. As I look back on the year, there are five things that stand out. And I'm going to discuss each of them on today's TDS Photography Podcast.

Digital Photography Podcast 926

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5 Photography Things I'm Thankful for in 2023

Thank goodness for photography! I can't tell you how many times I've thought that over the past year. Here are five reasons why.

  • The Launch of Live View Photography Publication - When a handful of us from the TDS community got together and debuted Live View, it put me back in the editor seat for the first time since my O'Reilly Media days. And I love it. Since April 2023, we have published more than 90 top-quality articles. Our photographer-writers are as good as anyone online. And I'm really proud of the work we've done in 2023, and optimistic about what's to come in 2024.
  • The Full Return of In-Person Photography Workshops - We started to inch our way back in 2022, but it was nerve-wracking. Finally, in 2023 we were able to convene without masks and antibody tests. That doesn't mean that COVID has left us, but we have learned to live with it, protect ourselves, and still enjoy community activities. All three in-person workshops were and enjoyable success in 2023, and I can't wait to hit the road again next year. You can learn more about our upcoming workshop season here.
  • lightroom-local.jpg

  • Adobe Finally Opens Up Lightroom to Local Folders - The problem with the app formerly known as Lightroom Creative Cloud was that it was inextricably tied to the cloud. Finally, late in 2023, Adobe took the handcuffs off Lightroom, letting us use it for pictures on our local drive. This changed everything for me. And I'm so glad I can now use Adobe's modern version of Lightroom the way that I want. You can read about all of the updates here.
  • Nikon Releases the Zf - Because I'm a film photographer as well, I have lots of vintage glass that I want to use on digital bodies. But there wasn't a full-frame mirrorless that called to me, that is, until Nikon released the Zf. This is such a beautiful, intelligent camera that cheerfully accepts all of my classic glass at their native focal length. In addition to my OM-1 for travel, and the X100V for street, I now have the Zf for those mix-and-match personal projects. And I'm having a blast. You can learn more about the Nikon Zf here.
  • The Blossoming of Our Online Community - We've had the Inner Circle for a while now, but 2023 is the year that this group reached critical mass and became the vibrant online community that I had always hoped. Every day I check in to see what's going on and what people are talking about. My vision was always to provide a safe place for photographers and artists to interact without the distraction of questionable ads or flamethrowing malcontents. And now we have it. And in 2024, as new members join us, it's only going to get better. You can sign up for the Inner Circle here.

There's more, of course, but these 5 things rise to the top. And it has not escaped my attention that this community is at the heart of much of this. Thank you so much!

Luminar Neo Adds Generative Expand to Its Trio of New AI Tools

You can read the entire article on FStoppers.com

Skylum has completed its trilogy of new Generative AI tools with the addition of Generative Expand. The company has already released GenErase and GenSwap.

The company says this new GenErase tool "empowers users to break free from traditional aspect ratios and add a new dimension to their original compositions. With GenExpand, you can effortlessly extend the boundaries of your photos, whether you're creating panoramic landscapes for vast mountain ranges, serene lakes, etc. or want to give your favorite images more breathing room to stand out against a beautifully balanced background."

Adobe offers something similar in Photoshop, and before that, they had Content Aware fill that accomplished something similar, but without advanced AI, the result could often be unsatisfying because the technology repeated parts of images it found to complete the fill.

In this example provided by Skylum, you can see a landscape expanded in width and the AI creates a believable topography expansion that matches well with the original photo.

Now most photographers, myself included, would wonder why any photographer would shoot an original image that cramped and without context of the rest of the landscape, but there's no doubt the technology works can provide a believable expansion of the image at first glance.

This technology seems interesting, but not very useable on higher resolution images. My image experiments were using a Sony a7 IV, and I saw these effects on multiple images mostly taken outdoors. Now, I'll repeat I was on a beta, and the release version may be better. If this review needs a follow up, I'll provide one.

I also think part of this lower resolution problem is related to having potentially thousands of people hammering on rendering servers at the same time and companies limiting bandwidth. Still, that's a problem for the people who offer the feature to solve. If I'm going to use this technology on occasion, I want the best possible image quality.

I would expect and hope that as the technology gets better we'll see better results. Luminar Neo is a capable image editor, and Skylum has their fair share of pioneering efforts. So, I don't mean to overly criticize Skylum. I use Neo all the time in my landscape work, and it's an excellent product. I appreciate their pushing the boundaries which they often do. I just don't think GenExpand is a home run yet, but it will be useful to some photographers in less demanding use cases. In my examples, the images looked pretty good at 1x, but anyone looking closely will see the problems.

The 2024 TDS Photography Workshop Season

Gift Certificates are available for all of our workshops! Just send me an email at dstory@gmail.com, and I'll send you a personalized certificate right away.

You can see all of the workshops and reserve your spot at thenimblephotographer.com

I've just announced six new workshops for next year - 3 online, and 3 in-person on location. All events are open for registration right now. Here's what's going on.

Photo Critique and Building Your Portfolio - Online - Feb. 2024

Spring in Sedona, AZ - In-Person - April 2024

Infrared Photography - Online - June 2024

Inkjet Printing for Photographers - Online - August 2024

Durango, CO and Mesa Verde National Park - In-Person - Oct. 2024

Safari West and Wine Country Experience in Sonoma County - In-Person - Nov. 2024

Reserve Your Spot Today

Most of our workshops currently have open seats. But typically that doesn't last for long. So if you want to join us in 2024, and I hope you do, visit the Nimble Photographer Workshops Page and reserve your spot. I hope to work with you in 2024!

What did iOS 17.2 do to my iPhone 15 Pro camera? Did the 5x telephoto get better?

You can read the entire story on DigitalCameraWorld.com

Apple's latest update for the iPhone, iOS 17.2, boasted some headline changes but perhaps the most interesting for photographers is the improved telephoto camera focussing speed. The other big photography feature is support for taking spatial video.

Neither of these will garner the most attention, though. The biggest new software change is the arrival of the Journal app, "a new app to reflect on everyday moments and life's special events" which might also be of some interest to those looking to better integrate their photos with words they write and GPS data from hikes in the hills, for example.

Back to the camera. One of the best features that goes unnoticed by most users of the iPhone is its LiDAR, a distance sensor that also helps the focusing system stay very fast. This doesn't work at longer distances, however. Similarly, the tele camera doesn't boast 100% focus pixels, which the wide and main cameras have, so it is the weakest of the three when it comes to focusing (though still one of the best camera phones even before this update).

Apple specifically describes the iOS 17.2 focus speed improvement as kicking in "when capturing small faraway objects on iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max" and I've got to say it does feel quicker, in lower light and otherwise, though I have to admit to no idea what is meant by a 'small' object. I've tried this on my iPhone 15 Pro Max with its 5x camera, but the improvement will also affect the 3x camera in the iPhone 15 Pro.

Virtual Camera Club News

The Nimble Photographer Newsletter is now publishing every Thursday. Readers will enjoy a variety of content spanning from short photo essays, to commentary on weekly events, to reviews of the latest and coolest photo gear.

TDS Workshops! - You can sign up for available workshops by visiting The Nimble Photographer. Inner Circle Members receive a 10-percent discount on all events.

Inner Circle Members: A big thanks to those who support our podcast and our efforts! We are having a blast at our new Inner Circle hangout, the private group I've set up at DerrickStoryOnline. We'd love it if you join us. You can become an Inner Circle Member by signing up at our Patreon site. You will automatically be added to the new hangout.

Great Photography Articles on Live View - If you check out our publication and appreciate what you see, be sure to follow us and clap for those authors. You can find us at medium.com/live-view.

If you're interested in writing for Live View, drop me a line at dstory@gmail.com.

The New Donation Kit for Carefree Shipping of Found Film Cameras - If you've discovered a film camera that's no longer being used, our new Donation Kit makes it easy to pack and ship. Just visit the Contact Form on thenimblephotographer.com, click the box next to Donating a Film Camera, and let me know what you have. In your note, be sure to include your shipping address.

Affiliate Links - The links to some products in this podcast contain an affiliate code that credits The Digital Story for any purchases made from B&H Photo and Amazon via that click-through. Depending on the purchase, we may receive some financial compensation.

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

See you next week!

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

This is The Digital Story Podcast #925, Dec. 12, 2023. Today's theme is "Make It Better with Bare Bulb Flash." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

Last week I talked about holiday portraits and discussed the importance of good lighting. Many photographers these days opt for existing light snaps. They're fine, most of the time, but what if I told you about a brighter way to create pleasing portraits? I'm going to do exactly that on this week's TDS Photography Podcast. I hope you enjoy the show.

Digital Photography Podcast 925

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Make It Better with Bare Bulb Flash

Lux-Senior-1024.jpeg

Some photographers have moved away from flash photography because they don't like the images produced with shoe-mount strobes or those built-in to the camera.

And often for good reason. The light can be over-concentrated on the subject leaving the background murky and off-color. But what if you could use a flash that evenly illuminated the entire scene, including your subject? Wouldn't that be better?

There is such a technique. It's called bare bulb flash. And instead of focusing the light through a rectangular fresnel lens, you use an exposed flash tube that spreads the light everywhere.

These used to be expensive and bulky units. But I've been testing the Godox Lux Senior Retro Camera Flash ($119) that is super compact, easy to use, works on practically any camera, and allows you to use bare bulb flash.

Let me walk you through its features.

  • Buit-In Reflector Is Foldable - Godox designed the Lux Senior with a foldable circular reflector. This is great when you want a more directional light. But you can also fold it out of the way for bare bulb lighting.
  • It's Not TTL, but Auto Works Well - I use the auto mode at f/2.8 ISO 100 with the reflector folded back. You can adjust the scene brightness by changing the ISO or aperture. Once you have it the way you want, Auto mode will take it from there.
  • 7 Manual Output Settings - You can also go completely manual with 7 settings between full power and 1/64th.
  • 2 Optical Modes As Well - Optical Modes that offer S1 and S2 settings. In S1 the flash will fire in response to another manual or TTL flash, while in S2, the Retro Flash will respond similarly, but ignore the initial flash.
  • Rechargable Lithium Battery - No need to worry about carrying batteries. It comes with its own USB-C charging cable that restores the internal battery.

In addition to getting great shots, the retro design is a real conversation starter. And the fact that you can use this flash with any camera you have, provides for lots of creative opportunities.

No, You Don't Need To Buy The New M3 MacBook Pro

You can read the entire article on FStoppers.com

I spent over $4,000 on the new M3 Max MacBook Pro. It's amazing, but after directly comparing it to my M1 MacBook Pro, I've realized it's probably not worth upgrading.

Two years ago, I made a substantial investment, parting with $2,700 for my M1 Pro MacBook Pro. At that time, it was a significant chunk of change for me, but what surprised me most was that it managed to lure me away from my beloved handmade Windows desktop PC. Fast-forward to the present, and I find myself contemplating an upgrade not because my current laptop falls short, but because the M1 Pro has set the bar so high.

Now, with the advent of the M3 Max, the question lingers: is the upgrade worth the exorbitant cost? The M3 Max promises increased speed and efficiency, boasting impressive export times for both video and raw files.

My first test was a simple video export in Premiere. The M3 Max outpaced my M1 Pro, rendering a 9.5-minute video in 4 minutes and 6 seconds compared to the M1 Pro's 6 minutes and 13 seconds.

For my second test, I exported 100 raw files in Lightroom. The M3 Max finished the job in just 47 seconds, and the M1 took 78 seconds.

These gains are impressive, but here's the real question: how often are you actually exporting files? Once or twice a day? How much are you willing to spend to save 5 or 10 minutes? In the grand scheme of things, for the majority of users, the marginal gains in speed may not justify the substantial dent in the wallet. Unless you find yourself in an industry where time is indeed money and rendering projects stretch into the realm of 24-hour marathons, the upgrade may not offer the revolutionary leap you're hoping for.

As a photographer and videographer, my M1 Pro has been the best computer I've ever owned -- so good, in fact, that I really don't need to upgrade it. I imagine the majority of people reading this are in the same situation.

If you can tell that your current computer is struggling to keep up with whatever tasks you throw at it on a daily basis, it's time to upgrade, but if it's already keeping up, it's probably not spending thousands of dollars to save a few extra minutes a few times a week.

The 2024 TDS Photography Workshop Season

Gift Certificates are available for all of our workshops! Just send me an email at dstory@gmail.com, and I'll send you a personalized certificate right away.

You can see all of the workshops and reserve your spot at thenimblephotographer.com

I've just announced six new workshops for next year - 3 online, and 3 in-person on location. All events are open for registration right now. Here's what's going on.

Photo Critique and Building Your Portfolio - Online - Feb. 2024

Spring in Sedona, AZ - In-Person - April 2024

Infrared Photography - Online - June 2024

Inkjet Printing for Photographers - Online - August 2024

Durango, CO and Mesa Verde National Park - In-Person - Oct. 2024

Safari West and Wine Country Experience in Sonoma County - In-Person - Nov. 2024

Reserve Your Spot Today

Most of our workshops currently have open seats. But typically that doesn't last for long. So if you want to join us in 2024, and I hope you do, visit the Nimble Photographer Workshops Page and reserve your spot. I hope to work with you in 2024!

DPReview Annual Awards: The best photography gear of 2023

You can read the entire story on DPReview.com.com

I cover all the winners in the podcast.

Virtual Camera Club News

The Nimble Photographer Newsletter is now publishing every Thursday. Readers will enjoy a variety of content spanning from short photo essays, to commentary on weekly events, to reviews of the latest and coolest photo gear.

TDS Workshops! - You can sign up for available workshops by visiting The Nimble Photographer. Inner Circle Members receive a 10-percent discount on all events.

Inner Circle Members: A big thanks to those who support our podcast and our efforts! We are having a blast at our new Inner Circle hangout, the private group I've set up at DerrickStoryOnline. We'd love it if you join us. You can become an Inner Circle Member by signing up at our Patreon site. You will automatically be added to the new hangout.

Great Photography Articles on Live View - If you check out our publication and appreciate what you see, be sure to follow us and clap for those authors. You can find us at medium.com/live-view.

If you're interested in writing for Live View, drop me a line at dstory@gmail.com.

The New Donation Kit for Carefree Shipping of Found Film Cameras - If you've discovered a film camera that's no longer being used, our new Donation Kit makes it easy to pack and ship. Just visit the Contact Form on thenimblephotographer.com, click the box next to Donating a Film Camera, and let me know what you have. In your note, be sure to include your shipping address.

Affiliate Links - The links to some products in this podcast contain an affiliate code that credits The Digital Story for any purchases made from B&H Photo and Amazon via that click-through. Depending on the purchase, we may receive some financial compensation.

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

See you next week!

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

This is The Digital Story Podcast #924, Dec. 5, 2023. Today's theme is "The Reluctant Portrait and FindMySnap." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

It's practically impossible not to take pictures during the holidays. If you're lucky, there are plenty of photo subjects in bright, colorful settings. But most folks don't like how photos of them look. Here's how to make them happy. Plus, I'll introduce you to an exciting new iOS app called FindMySnap. All of that, and more, on today's TDS Photography Podcast. I hope you enjoy the show.

Digital Photography Podcast 924

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The Reluctant Portrait

The reason why most folks don't like their picture taken is because they don't like the way they look in the photo. I can totally understand that.

Holiday snapshots are notorious for bad looks - unflattering expressions, bad angles, and poor lighting. But if you overcome these obstacles, it's a brand new ballgame, and one that most people would be happy to participate in. Here are my 5 favorite tips to overcome reluctant portraits.

  • Candids Can Be Cruel - Unless you're a toddler, the adorable family dog, or just unnaturally handsome from all angles, candids typically do a disservice to the subject. Forget about spontaneity and go for pleasing.
  • Find Good Lighting - Nearly every home and venue has an area or two where the lighting isn't ghastly. Scout these areas out, then use them to your advantage. One of my favorites is diffused window lighting.
  • Get Permission, then Work Your Magic - Tell the subject that you have a great idea for a shot and that you think it's going to be fantastic. Even reluctant participants will go along with something that seems well thought out.
  • Show Them the Picture! - We have these fantastic LCD screens on the back of our cameras - use them! Once you get a good shot, show it to the subject. Nothing relaxes and builds confidence like success. Chances are this will buy you a few more opportunities.
  • Share Only Flattering Pictures After the Event - People remember who makes them look good. Dispense with the awkward and only share the pleasing. You work at the next gathering will be much easier.

When we look back on holiday photos, we want to see our subjects clearly and in a good light. With you intervening to create good photographs instead of just indiscriminately snapping away, you will capture memories that people will enjoy for years to come.

IMG_D4D5658CE5AF-1.jpeg

And finally, don't forget the group shot! It is the single most important image of the gathering.

Happy Holidays!

Find Photos Lightning Fast with FindMySnap

You can learn all about it at CYME

How many pictures do you think you have on your iPhone? I'm guessing alot! In my case, I have about 31,000.

And one of our favorite things to do during a conversation about travel, or anything else, is to pull out our smartphone, and find that picture that we can show the other person.

Easier said than done, right? Not anymore with FindMySnap.

This AI-Powered app indexes your entire photo library, then provides lightning-fast results when you query it.

Search phrases I've used include: Mom Christmas, Cat Window, My Sons, and so many more. The results are truly amazing.

Plus the app has a bit of fun built in as well.

  • Save and Cherish Your Photo Collage: Adore the set of images you rediscovered? The app auto-generates a photo collage, which you can save to favorites.
  • Show Off Your Best Shots: Easily craft and share your standout images across Instagram, TikTok, Pinterest, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, and more!
  • Craft Your Perfect Photo Album: Turn your themed photo collections into stunning albums right within Apple Photos!
  • Language Friendly: Whether it's English, Spanish, French, or more, just ask Find My Snap to help you out in your preferred language.

You can download and try the app for free. If you love it, you can purchase it for $1.99 a monty, $6.99 a year, or $34.99 for a lifetime license. It works beautifully on both iPhones and iPads.

The 2024 TDS Photography Workshop Season

Gift Certificates are available for all of our workshops! Just send me an email at dstory@gmail.com, and I'll send you a personalized certificate right away.

You can see all of the workshops and reserve your spot at thenimblephotographer.com

I've just announced six new workshops for next year - 3 online, and 3 in-person on location. All events are open for registration right now. Here's what's going on.

Photo Critique and Building Your Portfolio - Online - Feb. 2024

Spring in Sedona, AZ - In-Person - April 2024

Infrared Photography - Online - June 2024

Inkjet Printing for Photographers - Online - August 2024

Durango, CO and Mesa Verde National Park - In-Person - Oct. 2024

Safari West and Wine Country Experience in Sonoma County - In-Person - Nov. 2024

Reserve Your Spot Today

Most of our workshops currently have open seats. But typically that doesn't last for long. So if you want to join us in 2024, and I hope you do, visit the Nimble Photographer Workshops Page and reserve your spot. I hope to work with you in 2024!

Harman Photo's Brand New Color Film is Called Phoenix 200

You can read the entire story on Petapixel.com

Harman Photo, the company that manufactures Ilford-brand film, has announced a new color film: Harman Phoenix 200. The limited edition film, which has been teased by the company on social media for weeks, is a 36-exposure, ISO 200, designed for 35mm SLR cameras, and was made entirely in Harman's Mobberley factory in North West England. "We are so well known for our black and white films that we are regularly asked why we don't make colour films," says managing director Greg Summers. "We always believed this wasn't feasible, but I'm delighted to say we were wrong!"

Harman says the film produces high-contrast photos with "visible grain and punchy, vibrant colours," which is backed up by the example photos shared by the company. The DX-coded cassette can be rated between ISO 100 and 400 but Harman believes it performs best at ISO 200 in "good, consistent light, with the possibility of halation."

"We think this is unlike any other colour film on the market," says Giles Branthwaite, Harman's sales and marketing director. "As it is our first, we also recognise it is not perfect, but the film community is crying out for choice when it comes to colour, and we want them to know we are listening."

"This is just the beginning of Harman's colour journey," adds Branthwaite. "Sales from this film will allow us to further invest, refine, and improve our formulations, coating capabilities, and colour technology. Our aim is that each new colour film we produce is an improvement on the previous."

The film is available now, and you can find links in the Petapixel article.

And, if you want to learn more about the film ecosystem, including the Harmam announcement, be sure to check out the article, A Film Photography Revival? by John Pemberton on Live View.

Virtual Camera Club News

The Nimble Photographer Newsletter is now publishing every Thursday. Readers will enjoy a variety of content spanning from short photo essays, to commentary on weekly events, to reviews of the latest and coolest photo gear.

TDS Workshops! - You can sign up for available workshops by visiting The Nimble Photographer. Inner Circle Members receive a 10-percent discount on all events.

Inner Circle Members: A big thanks to those who support our podcast and our efforts! We are having a blast at our new Inner Circle hangout, the private group I've set up at DerrickStoryOnline. We'd love it if you join us. You can become an Inner Circle Member by signing up at our Patreon site. You will automatically be added to the new hangout.

Great Photography Articles on Live View - If you check out our publication and appreciate what you see, be sure to follow us and clap for those authors. You can find us at medium.com/live-view.

If you're interested in writing for Live View, drop me a line at dstory@gmail.com.

The New Donation Kit for Carefree Shipping of Found Film Cameras - If you've discovered a film camera that's no longer being used, our new Donation Kit makes it easy to pack and ship. Just visit the Contact Form on thenimblephotographer.com, click the box next to Donating a Film Camera, and let me know what you have. In your note, be sure to include your shipping address.

Affiliate Links - The links to some products in this podcast contain an affiliate code that credits The Digital Story for any purchases made from B&H Photo and Amazon via that click-through. Depending on the purchase, we may receive some financial compensation.

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

See you next week!

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

IMG_0624.jpeg

I tend to like optics that are a bit more compact, such as the Nikkor Z 40mm f/2.0. It's fast, light, and sharp. The only problem is, it doesn't allow me to get any closer to my subject than .96 feet. That's OK, but often I prefer a bit tighter.

There are all sorts of ways to solve this problem. Most of them include bulk and expense. But I discovered a solution in my shoebox of filters from the past. And my guess is that you may have one of these yourself: the screw-in close-up lens.

I found a lovely Hoya +4 multicoated close-up filter. It works great on many of my Nikon-mount lenses, including the Voigtlander Ultron 40mm f/2 SL IIS aspherical lens. Here's an example of what this tandem can produce.

ZF1_0837.jpeg Christmas Cactus - Voigtlander 40mm with Hoya Close-Up Lens, Nikon Zf.

It's not macro photography by any stretch of the imagination. But it's handheld, easy, and you can't beat the price. Here's another "around the house" flower shot, this time with the Nikkor 40mm.

ZF1_0889-Orchid-with-Closeup-Lens-2048.jpg Orchid - Nikkor 40mm with Hoya Close-Up Lens, Nikon Zf.

I enjoy photographing the world around me - my house, backyard, studio, local park. Having that simple close-up lens with me allows for a more intimate perspective while still traveling light.

Dig around in your filter box and see what you might have in there.