Saturday, 29 April 2017

Cassini's Grand Finale

Cassini–Huygens is an international project (NASA, ESA and ASI) with an aim: the study of Saturn and its moons. The unmanned spacecraft Cassini began its journey on October 15, 1997. Twenty years after, its adventure is close to finish.

NASA is following its last steps in Cassini: The Grand Finale. In this webpage are published a lot of very interesting pictures taken by this special spacial photographer.

Farewell to Mimas. Taken on January 30, 2017 at about 40.000 Km of distance. Mimas is a Saturn's icy moon.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute. Link.
Ring Details on Display. The ring is one of the most charismatic details of this giant planet. Due to the speed and distance, we usually view it as a blurred surface. In this picture we can view it closer.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute. Link.
Potentially Hospitable Enceladus. Under a ice layer, this moon contains an ocean and maybe even hydrothermal activity. Life in this planet could have be possible.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute. Link.
View from Above. Under the serene appearance of Saturn's surface there are high-speed winds and changing weather.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute. Link.

Awesome images with a great value for scientists and photographers.

What's in your bag?

Photographers and their equipment. There are two kinds of photographers: the photographer who loves speak about his gear, and the photographer who hates that topic. If you love it or you hate it doesn't mind. If you want to take pictures, you have to wear some equipment, and you probably need a kind of bag. What's your choice about it?

Some days ago my bag (a CASE LOGIC SLRC202) was broken and I needed to buy a new one. I was thinking about to change my choice. I really have three bags:

  • A HAMA photo backpack Orlando 170.

The first one is very small. You can carry your camera with a low weight but you have no space for anything more.

The last one is a big bag. You have a lot of space for your gear, but it's not very comfortable to carry it to everywhere. The access to your gear is in your back, and you can't catch anything quickly. You can to make compartments but they are weak.

My favourite choice is the middle one. It's comfortable and you can carry some things inside. The access is lateral, so you can catch everything quickly.

The choice of a camera bag depends of the kind of pictures you are going to take. I was thinking about other options. There are more elegant leather bags, but I usually take pictures in nature or in not very elegant places (urbex photography), so I need a comfortable and resistant bag, not an elegant one.

What I carry in my bag? I usually have my camera and one mounted lenses. I usually don't change the lenses in a whole session (panic about the dust in the sensor). If I carry my Nikon D810 I use one of the lateral compartments to carry the radio remote control, the radio receptor and the cable for join them. If I carry the Nikon D7000, the remote control is smaller, and I use that space to carry a grip.

With the Nikon D810 I take more studied pictures, in a specific place, with tripod and remote control (I use the space for a radio remote control system). Now I usually use my Nikon D7000 to take more spontaneous pictures. In walks, taken by hand, without tripod (I use the space for a hand grip).

I use the rest of the space for carry my documentation, a brush and a soft cloth to clean the lenses, batteries, memory cards, etc.

If I'm in nature, I usually also carry an additional backpack with water, food, sun protection, cap, maybe a torch, etc.

And you? What's your bag choice? What's in your bag?

Saturday, 22 April 2017

Silk Effect in Henares River

Yesterday I was taking a walk close to Henares River to take pictures of spring landscapes in the afternoon. I was with my tripod and the Nikon D810 and thought: What about to practice silk effect?

This zone is a semi-urban area. The urban neighbourhood ends here to begin a natural area where a very little waterfall is placed here. In some of these pictures you can view buildings in the background, showing the contrast between natural and urban.

Silk Effect is the effect you can view in the moving water when take a long exposure photograph (the semi-random movement is soften integrated in the time).

ISO 100 - F/16 - 25s

ISO 100 - F/5.6 - 30s

ISO 200 - F/5.6 - 30s

I tested several points of view while I was taking these pictures, and I've also tested several post-processing settings after. Black and white was a choice that I considered.

ISO 100 - F/16 - 15s

Finally, I show some pictures taken with my mobile about the 'Making of'.

The tripod was inside the river, to try to give a more immersive feeling. The stability is mandatory to this kind of photograph, so the tripod was heavily anchored. While the light was decreasing, I had to play with several settings of apertures and exposition times (as is shown in captions).

I didn't use filters. The use of filters with SAMYANG 14mm F2.8 ED AS IF UMC is very difficult (you need additional support gear). To make silk effect without filters, you need wait to the limit between afternoon and night. A long exposure (mandatory to silk effect) needs some lack of light to no produces overexposed pictures.

I hope you liked the pictures!


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