First Impressions: Sony A7III (and possibly the 100-400mmF4.5-5.6 GMaster by association)

The Backstory

So.  Have you read enough about the Sony Alpha cameras already?  Actually if you are not a camera geek like me you probably haven’t heard much of the Sony camera’s currently taking the world by storm.  Unless you are friends with me on any form of social media – then you probably heard too much in the last couple weeks and you are probably hoping that I would stop.  And I promise that this blog post is the culmination of what has been an exciting few weeks.  I therefore ask that you bear with me and maybe this is the last you’ll hear of it…for now!

Continue reading “First Impressions: Sony A7III (and possibly the 100-400mmF4.5-5.6 GMaster by association)”

Is it talent or hard work and experience or simply having the right equipment that counts most?

One of my quotes of all time is from Albert Einstein that goes “I have no particular talent, I am merely extremely inquisitive”. Now I make no claim to be anywhere close to the genius that was Einstein but I would say that  I too have no particular talent except perhaps for being curious.  And that can get you a long way sometimes but perhaps curiosity is not all you need (cos we all know that love is all you need).  I’ve, in the last couple months, been having a recurring conversation with a few different people on the topic of natural talent versus hard work towards a goal versus having the better tools on hand to finish the job and buying some luck with that.  The conversations seem pretty pointless because they inevitably lead nowhere because this debate is as old as time. I mean I’m sure even the early cavemen had hunters who made more kills because of a better spear or fishermen who caught fish easier because they were fishing 7 days a week.  But let me give you my take because you’ve already read so far in, you might as well read on…

Continue reading “Is it talent or hard work and experience or simply having the right equipment that counts most?”

Spark of insanity…

I don’t usually do pure tech reviews.  Mostly because by the time I decide to buy anything I have done loads and loads of research and generally am half way to being in love with it already so am generally biased towards being positive.  I think the same is true about the DJI Spark that I recently purchased but it hasn’t been all positive for a change so I decided to write it up on here.

I have been following Casey Neistat after a friend brought his channel to my attention late last year.  He was sent a prototype version so I had the first view of the smallest drone in the DJI line up months before it even became available here in South Africa.  Then he got the real version and his review was just brilliant (with an apology to his wife at the end but that’s Casey for you!).  So after doing more research, speaking to the guys at ODP and much advertising hype I decided that come September I will be getting one.  And I was going to pay full price for it and everything, then the white fly more combo went on special and a quickly grabbed it up!  That’s why people like Casey are social media influencers I guess, they influence you into buying what they get sent…although his reviews are not sponsored. Continue reading “Spark of insanity…”

Pelican low key

My guide to capturing low key nature photographs

I recently made a trip down to Durban and had some time on a Saturday morning to get out to the Botanic Gardens, one of my favourite places to visit when I am in Durban (see the previous post on the other places to see when in Durban: I’m coming home…part 2 of 2).  It was a clear, sunny morning, creating light that lend itself perfectly to shooting, unlike most of my previous visits that were mostly cloudy and on one occasion raining.  The large patches of shade on the small pond created by the trees that surround it and shooting indoors in the orchid nursery allowed me to try my hand at some low key shots of the birds on the pond and some of the orchids, resulting in some of the pictures in this post.  I got a number of questions on how I achieved these dramatic shots and so I will try to explain some of the technique behind the photos. Continue reading “My guide to capturing low key nature photographs”

Shoot for the moon…

My how to guide on capturing the moon

I have always held a fascination with the moon…in fact mankind has been captivated by the moon for probably as long as we have existed.  Our closest celestial companion, waxing and waning to a precise rhythm to mark the passing of time.  A love affair that ebbs and flows like the very tides that arise from the captivating  dance around the sun.  Perhaps it is the very fact that we are ourselves 70% water inexplicably draws us to it increasing as the moon itself magically grows larger in sky.  Perhaps millennia of evolution have led us to await the full moon for the best night time hunting and look around during the new moon with fear in our diurnal eyes.  Continue reading “Shoot for the moon…”

Making the most of lens filters

Before you get excited, this is not a post about the type of filters one would use on Instagram or any of the other social media sites.  I know, I know, they are marvelous and I also use many of them and have a few favourites as well (Hefe, Lo-fi, X-Pro) but this is actually a post about the lens filters that go on the end of my DSLR lenses.  If you are not already using them I am hoping this post will convince you why you should be using them and what the best use for the different filters is. Continue reading “Making the most of lens filters”

A quick guide to photographing the Milk Way

After posting the pictures of my recent travels on my other social media sites I got a few questions on how exactly I got the pictures of the Milky Way that I had posted.  So I decided to quickly write up how I do it, hopefully to give some tips on how it is done and, if you do it differently possibly to also learn alternate methods myself.  For the most part I don’t think it is a very difficult thing to do, it just needs the right equipment and right location and just a little bit of technique that can quickly be learned.  I try to keep it simple and I am sure that there are many other ways to get these shots but I am still learning those myself.  I use a DSLR but with the control one can get on compact and even phone cameras nowadays I am sure most of what follows can be transposed to other camera formats. Continue reading “A quick guide to photographing the Milk Way”

Hi, my name is Pranesh and I have an addiction…

My friend and mentor Herbert (see his blog here: Hearty Express)says I have a serious problem.  For a long time I resisted, but of late I have found it increasingly hard and find myself giving in a little too often for comfort. There are a few names for it; gear envy, equipment envy, getting caught in the technology upgrade cycle.  Whatever its called, I became totally hooked sometime last year and don’t see myself breaking free of its grip anytime soon. Continue reading “Hi, my name is Pranesh and I have an addiction…”