Beautiful... my heart skipped a beat *_*
Just using my Nikon D60, Nikkor 55-200mm f/4-5.6G and a rickety old tripod!
So here's my brilliant new idea!
I bought my Nikon D60 in 2009, and it was my first foray into SLRs. I've had so much fun with it; exploring lens shops, experimenting with different settings, every time I use it I learn something new. My beautiful late mum helped run a photographic processing studio in Sydney (Parrot Photo, any of you heard of it?) and I suppose her enthusiasm rubbed off on me. When I take a picture I'm proud of, I get tingles. But I digress.
Given its budget positioning, the D60 does have some shortcomings, but they haven't ever really been a problem. It doesn't autofocus on any lenses other than those with AF-S/AF-I motors, but often I find I'm faster at manually focusing anyway, and find it easier to do so for choosing subjects. It can't shoot RAW and fine JPG simultaneously, but I rarely want to. ISO sensitivity is low compared to my old man's D90 and some of the newer models, but the larger sensor size was such an upgrade from the bridge and compact cameras I used before I'm not complaining!
One area where I'm jealous of my old man's D90 is battery life. Whereas he can go for almost a week without swapping batteries, my D60's Nikon EN-EL9 battery barely gives it enough juice for a day of RAW shooting, and after owning it for several years I've noticed a shocking decline in its capacity. This culminated in my Supanova experience on the weekend, where I was barely able to take five photos.
Talking to other D60, D40 and D40x users, I'm inclined to believe I may have had a dud unit, but the rated 1000mAh does seem a tad low, particularly when my old man' D90 battery is barely larger than mine and holds 1500mAh.
At the last COMEX (link to an older one)... or was it SITEX? I forget. At an IT convention in Singapore I bought a stack of ultra high capacity 3200mAh NiMH AA batteries. The packaging says they need 16 hours to charge (which I even believe is optimistic!) but when charged they last for an age. In my FujiFilm bridge camera, I was well into my second week of daily shooting before they gave out, and that was with using the LCD on full brightness!
So this morning on a whim, I was browsing for replacement D60 batteries on eBay when I noticed a pseudo-camera grip for the D60 that can take two regular Nikon batteries, as well as six AAs! I figure if a 1000mAh lithium battery isn't enough for a full day, then surely six 3200mAh NiMH AA batteries and two 1000mAh litihuim Nikon batteries should, right?
(I use the term "pseudo-camera grip" because Nikon doesn't make them for the D60/D40 body, the D60 doesn't support true camera grips with faster motors or extra shutter buttons, and even though it has the texture and styling of a real camera grip this unit is really just a glorified battery pack. Still, that's good enough for me... I couldn't afford a real one anyway!)
As with regular camera grips I probably wouldn't want it attached to my camera all the time for the extra weight and bulk it introduces, but for all day events such as anime cons and trade shows, it might work a treat! And hey, if it turns out to be more trouble than its worth, at least I can keep it as a backup. Being able to power my D60 with AAs bought from a shop in a photographic emergency might come in handy one day :).
Taken straight from the camera without any editing. Usually the sky around here fills with fairly uniform clouds, but this morning there were so many layers with light piercing the thinner bands, the detail and colours were amazing. Earlwood, inner west Sydney. Full sized image on Flickr.
I'm tempted to start quoting a Paul Simon song... maybe I'll just leave it at that :).
The contrast, colour and details on the buildings are terrible, but adjusting the RAW and exporting like this was the only way I could hope to match the colour of the sky out the window this morning. I reckon the real thing was even deeper and bluer than this!
I tell you what, I prefer the climate in Singapore, but nowhere on earth has better skies than Australia :). Except maybe Ireland earlier this year, they had epic skies when we weren't trapped in a snowbank for long enough to see it.
The rule of thirds is way off, but I like this picture for some reason. Really like all the blue, especially those random flares at the bottom which I can't account for at all. Ghosts?
Also makes for an interesting contrast with my photo of Singapore a few days ago.
Speaking of photos in Singapore, here's one I also took this afternoon of the brand spanking new apartment building outside me bedroom window here. When I was in Singapore in January last year it wasn't there, now just over a year later it's finished! It took them longer for the people next door to us in Adelaide to build a semi detatched one story house!
The colours seem a bit over-saturated, but I did very little post production other than converting from RAW. And no, I didn't build the building.
My shrink and good friend in Alaska Sir Jim Kloss esq. suggested I take a break from computers and see some nature. I didn't have time to take an entire day off, but on Monday morning for several hours I left the house and walked around the gardens in Mawson Lakes taking photos. It did me the world of good.
I took far too many [amateur] photos to upload all at once, so I'm staggering them over a few days. Today's selection are all the photos I took of avian friends. Well they weren't really friends, aside from the ducks they all flew away as soon as I got close :).
Taken with my Nikon D60 and my 55-200mm Nikkor lens. You can view the evolving Flickr gallery here.
For some reason I like the softer focus in this shot. The depth of field had to be narrower so I could shoot the picture faster to compensate for my overly jittery hands. At least with a 50mm 1.8 it can collect much more light in a shorter time.
This is another type of shot you just can't plan for. Like a really bad cold. Wait, that didn't sound terribly good. Need some work on holding cameras more steadily when standing though.
What happens when you have a Nikon D60 and an affordable, ultra sharp AF Nikkor 50mm f/1.8D but only half an hour or so to spare? Backyard photos!
It's my belief as an amateur photographer that there's subject matter everywhere, you just need a keen enough eye to see it. One of the magical things about cameras is their ability to take something plain and ordinary and record it in such as way that makes said subject matter look anything but plain and ordinary. Or maybe that's just me.
I found myself waiting a few days ago with my Crumpler computer bag at the Mawson Lakes Interchange train/bus station (Google Maps, Wikipedia) a block away from our house. I tell you what (and I reckon Todd Tyrtle would agree!), my quality of life is so much higher living so close to a public transport hub like this, I can get to the city and the surrounding suburbs so easily and without needing a car.
Anyway to pass the time I whipped out my little D60 with my AF 50mm f/1.8 and manually focused a couple of scenery shots. Why? I hate rhetorical questions. Why? Because I do! Wait, I asked another rhetorial question didn't I? Argh that was one too! I'll stop now.
After several months of painfully dry weather (speaking on behalf of the struggling farmers) Adelaide and other parts of SA have been getting some much needed rain over the last few weeks. Coming from Singapore where it seems to rain almost every day I was struck by how sudden the scenery everywhere changes so quickly here. Not only does sunburned ground become green again, but the darker clouds here seem to even paint human structures a different colour somehow. I can't really describe it, but buildings, paved surfaces and even cars just look different. Can you go senile when you're 23?
I reckon it would be worth taking these exact same shots sitting in the same chair in six months time.