Thursday, May 08, 2008

5 Strange Things About Me

Well what a wonderful chance for me to reblogging again. Mr. Ryan or as I call him Laxmi "R. K." Narayan (in recognition of his flair for writing), has tagged me, a line passed on from Sundar Raman and Vidhya so now it is my turn.

It is always difficult to jot out one's own idiosyncrasies, but I have been given the baton of humanity's quest for strangeness, and so here you go, some of my most quirky features:

1. I have this weird phobia (may i call it safe-o-phobia) to check and recheck if my door is locked properly whenever I go out. I have lost track of the number of times I hang off the door latch, pull on the door latch or bang on the door to make sure it is absolutely locked., but once I get into the car I always have this doubt if i really did lock the door properly. How much does that measure on the weirdness scale

2. I have a maniacal urge to clean my car, always on a Saturday, without fail, every Saturday. Freaky!!

3. I just love talking to myself. Wait till you see me in one of those situations, not even the Joker (of Batman fame) could be crazier than me

4. I am addicted to mints, ( huuuh!!...addicted to mints...what the...yeah i know)

5. Ohh yeah almost forgot, the most quirkiest, I like to name my personal items, like my car (rasiga), my laptop (shradha), even the plants on my desk (Katrina and Tom).

So there ends my saga of quirkiness, passing on the baton to Sasisekar, and my brother Abhay 'Weirdo' Ravichandran hoping they will continue the run and pass it on.

Well of course this blog being a photo blog and all, got to put up one of my art works, so here it is

And a small photography tip: Sometimes focusing on an object nearby while blurring out things in the background (this is called shallow depth of field) can produce an incredible effect, such images can be effectively produced by using zoom lens as opposed to wide angle lens.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Lights of Baton Rouge

Today we'll talk about lenses: Camera lenses may be of different types:
1. Macro lenses - usually magnifies the subject to a very high range, with the best ones providing 1:1 i.e. image on a film is the same as the object being photographed. Macro lens based photography is termed as macro photography
2. Wide Angle lenses - usually a focal lenght ranging between 15-50mm. It provides a more real perspective. It provides more detail depth of field, such that background looks almost as well focussed as the foreground. Fish eye lens is a type of wide angle lens that takes in a wide hemispherical image and provides a kindof distorted spherical view.
3. Telephoto lens - high focal length lenses that can be used to shoot distant objects. This is the preferred lens in landscape, wildlife and sports photography.
The photograph above has been shot using a 70 - 300MM nikkor lens at 155mm, f/stop of 4.8 and en exposure of 1/15 sec using a Nikon D50

Friday, July 27, 2007

Bug Eyed Beauty

Some important photography notes

* Contrast is a measure of how the tones in the negative compare with the tones in the real scene

* Color temperature is the measure of bluishness or reddishness of light expressed in Kelvins
* Blue light has a higher color temperature at the range of 20000K, reddish light has a lower color temperature at the range of 2000K. Noon light is 5500K
* Bluish filters raise color temeprature. Orange tinted filters lower the color temperature

* Mirror Lock Up - This is the process of locking the mirror in the up position so the mirror does not move until after the exposure is made. Press the shutter button twice to make the shot.

* Shoot at a lenses sharpest aperture which two full stops smaller than the wide open
* avoid increasing the ISO even in dim light

Monday, June 11, 2007

Shadows in the clock tower

Some important photography tips I have come to realize through the photos I have taken

* the best time to shoot is early mornings and late afternoon or eveing.

* Use a polarizing filter if the sun is at right angles to the camera view. It will emphasize the contrast with the blue areas of the sky

* Long shadows can pickup subjects dramatically against the backdrop.

* Dense clouds diffuse light while thin high clouds helps to slightly soften the portrait
* Mercury vapor lighting can be cast out using a red filter

Monday, June 04, 2007


(Is he defying gravity??)

Depth of field is one of the ABC's of photography every avid photographer needs to know.

Depth of field is the zone of sharpest focus around the subject. It is the distance from the focus point where the image is sharp and everything else gets more blurred. The depth of field itself may be altered as required based on the kind of shot a photographer wants. The depth of field can be changed by the following factors:

* increasing f stops will increase depth of field as it reduces the aperture size and hence critical focussing is required. Effectively increasing f stop (reducing arperture size) will make everything to be in sharper focus

* Depth of field also depends on distance, farther the subject better the depth off field

* focal length. Shorter the focal length, deeper is the depth of field. Wide angle lenses produce more depth of field than telephoto lens for a subject at the same distance

Reflections of heaven

Filtering is another very important element of photography which diffrentiates between a good photograph and an extraordinary photograph. Some of the diffrent types of filters are as follows:

* Color compensation filter - These correct color shifts - available in 6 basic colors

* Diffusing filters has glass that is mottled or etched to break up the definition of the image slightly. They also conceal details and can help to creat halos around subjects

* Fog filters cut down on both colour saturation and contrast

* Light balancing filters - These help to balance the kind of light that is being used.

* Neutral Density filter can be used to limit the depth of field to a narrow zone. They are also used to limit the amount of light entering the camera

* Polarizing filters - Daylight is partly polarized. Polarizing filter allows light through one plane only. Polarizing filters absorb quite a lot of light and you will need to adjust the exposure by about 1 1/3 stops

* Ultraviolet filters - Reduce the bluish tint caused by UV radiation

* Yellow filters block the path of blue light, magenta blocks green and cyan filter blocks red light

* Graduated filters are toned over a part of the area with the remainder of the area clear

Saturday, June 02, 2007

The Mushroom Family

( This is a photograph of a mushroom family taken at the Blue Bonnet Swamp in Baton Rouge)

Photography as such is not a talent but rather a simple application of luck, logic, procedure and foresight in taking images with the right composition and detail. Of course for everything else there is Photoshop. No, seriously, most of the work in photography is about composition and oppurtunity.
Some rules that I follow in taking photographs (i myself am a beginner so dont go completely by what i say):
- know everthing about your camera, including all it's settings
- explore your camera, break away from the mold and try something different, hang upside down on a tree if you have to.
- f/stop, shutter speed and the light meter are your favourite friends
- Timing is everything. Dusk and dawn are the epicenters of perfect time for photography. As you go towards noon, your photo starts to look more and more ordinary. Of course this is true for nature photogaphy mostly .
- Use ISO levels effectively.
- Keep the knowledge flowing in and out.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Lenses, the eyes of a camera

Camera lenses may be of diffrent types:

- Wide angle lenses have a shorter focal length, and give a more real life perspective. They make it appear as if closer objects look large in relation to those in the background. Viewers feel a sense of involvement. The camera elements of a wide angle lens float inside their housing. The depth of field is relatively large while perspective is exaggerated.

- Telephoto lenses magnigy the distance subject and give more of a flattening effect
- Mirror lenses geneate a similar effect to telephoto but use a combination of mirrors and lenses to do this
- Zoom lenses cover a variety of focal lengths.
- Macro lens on the other hand has the ability to focus closely and give magnified views of the small subjects. Many zoom lenses themselves have a macro facility