Morning impressions from "Dyrehaven", Copenhagen

Winter has finally arrived in Denmark, and the sun rose at 8.39 today. So I grabbed my trusted Nikon D800 and mounted the new Sigma AF 24-105mm f/4 ART and went to "Dyrehaven" - a public park and animal reservat - north of Copenhagen for some - hopefully - beautiful winter morning photographs.

You be my judge.


A Ghost From The Past...

A ghost from the past just entered my life and hindered an interesting possibility, that could have ment a lot to my future - both professional and as a human.

It is mind boggling as past "mistakes" can haunt you for a lifetime. Is it fair that one human, that I interacted with many years ago and with whom you might not have been in agreement over "strategic and operational issues" still can make sure, that when an exiting opportunity arise - it suddenly disappear again due to "the ghost from the past" whispering some words?

We are but floating leaves on the stream of life, and both past and present direct your future. That is a fact I have to accept and now have felt directly.


SnapScan 9000 - be prepared for a laugh

Can you guess who the nice young man is in the image? It is me as a high school student - important years - where my passion for photography really took off. My god - 35 years has passed since those happy years.

I have just scanned b/w negatives and color slides from these years, and it has been hilarious to see the pictures again. Since many of the images are not something to boast about, the mission was only to get the old negatives and slides converted to digital format. Since I have many pictures from my analog years this conversion process must also go quickly.

Therefore I have just tested JOBO Snapscan 9000. It took med just 5 minutes to unpack it and set up. The scanning process is extremely simple. You install an SD card in the scanner, and then feed negatives or slides into the scanner by the help of various rails and frames - one at a time. The scan process only takes 4 seconds per negative / slide. The scanner has some simple correction options such as built-in color correction (step 6), exposure compensation (6 steps) and rotation, but as such is not intended to edit the picture.

Snapscan 9000 uses a 9 MP CMOS sensor and scanned at 2400 dpi (10 bits per color channel). This does not generate super high resolution but since the objective is convert several thousand negatives and slides into digital form so that they can be displayed on a monitor, then 2400 dpi is sufficient.
On the small 2.4 "screen you can see a preview of the image and if it looks good you click the big red button. Four seconds later, the scan is completed.

The scanner has USB 2.0 and TV-out output. It is very compact with a size of 82 x 6 x 152 mm and weight of 410 grams. Manual in English, German, French and Swedish is included.

But the next photo is proof that Snapscan actually can deliver a great result. It was captured recently with my Nikon FE on Ilford FP4 Plus.

So - if you hold many negatives or slides, then it might be a good idea to purchase a JOBO Snapscan 9000 and have those memories digitized, so you can have a laugh at how silly we looked when we were young and invincible.


Fall is here - a life changing event happened

I'm 53 years old. Yet another year is coming to an end. Some weeks ago our little family was hit by a life changing event as my wife got ill. Everything stopped - I was in chock - we are not immortal and will live forever - as young people or people with a young mind are inclined to believe. I'm sure my wife will overcome this illness, but our family has stopped up for a brief moment to reflect upon our life and way of living.

One of my many reflections can be comprised into one sentence - "Don't waste time". It sound banal but priorities must change when you realize that life has an expiration date. Maximize time with the ones you love and have fun while working.


Business portraits for

Yet again I was hired to do some people portraits for the company in Denmark. It's a basic lighting setup, with two SB-910 through a white umbrella on the left and a white reflector on the right.

Exposure settings for both photos are: 1/60 sec, at f/8.0, ISO 100, 0EV, A
Equipment: Nikon D800, AF-S Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8G, Nikon SB-910,  PocketWizard Flex TT5, PocketWizard Mini TT1  and PocketWizard AC3.

Highlights are well controlled with the help of the PocketWizards. In post I have added a bit more light to the male model, as I thought this suited him well.  The client and I have agreed that tonality doesn't have to be 100% identical for the six portrait photos I've made for this company. It is more important that the shooting angle, b/w settings and framing to enhance the models personality.


B/W photos from antique market in Nizza, Italy

A series of b/w photos of old tools from the Nizza Antique Market in Nizza Monferrato.

Why not create a composite photo?

Hmmmm - it's summertime and I'm on vacation in Italy. Plenty of time to experiment with Photoshop. I read an article on LENSCRATCH about the Japanese photographer Michiko Makino and her stunning composite or double exposure photos.

This photo is an experiment of mine trying to create something special with a base photo (see previous blog article) and nine identical photos of a another flower subject blended in two different ways.

If we don't experiment - we don't learn and evolve as a photographer and artist.


Why not try manual focus?

I've been photographing for over 30 years - and for the past 8 years it has been primarily digital. And with the constant improvement in the AF-system of DSLRs that fit nearly every situation and equipment combination I have not given manual focus a lot of thoughts.

Yesterday during the golden hours - while walking in the beautiful surroundings of my home in Italy looking for suitable subjects for nature close-ups (not macro) - I found it difficult to rely on the AF-system of my Nikon D800 for various reasons (light, physical positioning, wind etc.) 
I set the AF-S 24-70mm f/2.8 lens to manual focus. And from that point on I just kept shooting focusing on getting the right exposure and the best framing rather than making the AF-system lock-in so I could take a photo. 

I'm now ready to try manual focus while doing portrait photography.