Time to change the gear setup

Hi gang! It’s time for another update, and this time it’s a gear update! As you may know, I have been a Canon shooter for years and I’ve really enjoyed using Canon gear. However, I’ve been giving my setup a lot of thought, and have been doing a ton of research, and I finally came to the conclusion that it was time to make a switch. *Insert gasp sound effect here*

The other day, I placed the order for my next camera… the Sony A7R!


Why would I want this one over my current Canon 5D Mark III?… Here are the main things that compelled me to change to the A7R:

• Worlds Smallest and lightest full-frame interchangeable lens camera
• 36.4 megapixels with no low-pass filter (same as Nikon D800E and D810)
• Built-in Wifi so I can shoot “untethered” to my computer and also transfer images to my iPhone in the field so I can post them here right away
• Can use my Canon glass via an adaptor (17mm tilt shift mainly)
• Captures much more highlight detail than 5D Mark III
• Articulated screen for shooting from high or low angles
• Can see exposure changes in viewfinder
• Focus peaking for easier manual focusing

A few comparisons Sony vs Canon:

Weight in grams 408 vs 910
Dynamic range 14.1EV vs 11.7 (read more highlight detail)
7392×4920 pixels vs 5920×3950
DxOMark score 95 vs 81

The bad part compared to my current camera:

• Bracketing options limited to 3 frames with 2 stops between… can’t do 5, 7, etc at 2 stops 
• 4 frames per second versus 6 on my Canon
• Shutter is somewhat loud
• Batteries don’t last as long due to constant use of electronic screens
• Nowhere near as many lenses available
• No GPS accessory available to automatically location tag my images

The camera should be arriving this week, and I look forward to putting it through the paces myself. The next blog post will probably include my first impressions, so stay tuned for that!


Post Processing for Outdoor & Travel Photographers

In other news, my recent class on creativeLIVE, “Post-Processing for Outdoor & Travel Photographers,” was a great success, and as usual, I had a great time working with the creativeLIVE team up in Seattle. If you missed the class, you can learn more or GET IT HERE. If you buy the class, you get the bonus material, which includes the practice files as well as the course handbook pdf (this one is a whopping 80 pages!).


Learn how to master HDR photography

Hi everyone! There’s one month left to sign up for my “Mastering HDR” workshop in Los Osos, CA. We’re looking at five full days of shooting, post-processing and stylizing HDR images. Before giving the workshop description, I want to mention something about this type of photography. The term “HDR” is often thought of as an illustrative and unrealistic look, but it’s important to understand that this look is just one of the potential end results. HDR is also used to create very realistic images by simply expanding the tonal range from what your camera can capture. In this class, we’ll go over all kinds of HDR processing, from the photo-realistic to the illustrative style.

Here is the full workshop description. I hope you’ll be able to join me for five days of intense training and shooting!


Mastering High Dynamic Range Photography

Nov. 29-Dec. 2, 2012

Learn to capture the full brightness range of a scene and present it to your viewer as either a photorealistic image or as an image that more closely resembles a hyper-detailed drawing.

With over two dozen choices of HDR processing software, you’ll learn which software is worth using and which should be ignored. You’ll also see why you should avoid Photoshop’s standard HDR processing and how to use alternative methods in Photoshop and Lightroom to produce far superior results.

This course will teach you how to deal with common problems such as subject motion, scenes with extreme dynamic range, images that feature people and a lot more.

You’ll learn:

• Best practices for shooting HDR that will help you capture much sharper images and avoid common problems
• How to best merge multiple exposures into a single High Dynamic Range image
• Which file formats are more ideal for unprocessed HDR images
• The best software choices for tone mapping your images
• Post processing techniques needed to tackle common problems
• Retouching techniques to remove telephone wires (even through trees) and other distractions
• Image optimization techniques to help direct the viewer’s eye through your image
• HDR panorama shooting and stitching techniques

You’ll learn all this from one of the original pioneers of HDR photography: The guy who the author of “The HDR Handbook” dubbed “The Godfather of HDR.”

Click here to register

In the images below, drag the sliders to see the before & afters.






 Click here to register