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September 13, 2013

Calvin & Hobbes Nursery Painting

First thing’s first: I know you’re probably thinking, “Yeah, yeah, another Calvin & Hobbes nursery painting,” but I really wanted to try my hand at it. It took four days of blood, sweat, and paint, but my contribution to the nursery is done. Being my favorite comic of all time, it was an easy decision to put Calvin & Hobbes all over the wall. But concessions had to be made, seeing as the gender was yet to be determined.

The compromise? Hobbes, but no Calvin.

Now, first thing’s first: I am no painter. Or at least, I didn’t expect to be. I’ve never painted anything like this before (i.e., anything on a wall that wasn’t a solid color), so I was a little intimidated. I was limited to about a third of the wall, which turned out to be a good thing (it probably would’ve taken me three times as long to do a whole wall). I chose the panel with Hobbes sleeping on a tree branch, as it afforded us the most flexibility with out furniture placement.

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August 8, 2013

Lord Bodner’s Octopus Triptych

UPDATE: I’ve had a few requests for the vector file I used to create my print, but I couldn’t find it anywhere. So unlike me… Anyway, I’ve taken a few minutes to recreate the file and have it linked below in a few different formats. The AI file is layered and contains the original drawing on a hidden layer, my traced results, and the eyes in case you want to do a different trace in Illustrator. You’ll notice that the original drawing by Bodner (presumably) does not have the eyes featured on a lot of the printed pieces for sale out on the web. It’s also actually a scuttlefish, so it has two little horn things above its eyes that I removed. Also supplied EPS and PDF files for download. I’d love to see what other people do with these! Enjoy!

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April 26, 2013

Clamshell portrait

I recently read in a magazine about a lighting setup called the “clamshell” where the subject is lit from the front by two softboxes (one larger one up high and a smaller one set lower to half power) and a reflector right above the subject.

Seemed simple enough. I didn’t have any softboxes, but eh, I improvised. Lending out some of my lightstands and gear to a friend for a shoot, I was pretty limited, but still had one lightstand with an umbrella, a Lumiquest 80/20, small tri-grip reflector, and two speedlights. Yeah, that should work…Read More

April 17, 2013

Lightroom tethering for the D600! (finally… and sorta)

Okay, so there’s still no native tethering in Lightroom for the Nikon D600 as of version 4.4, but I’m frankly sick of waiting. I’m guessing they either forgot or just don’t care (with a beta release of LR5 just hitting the interweb, it’s easy to understand the lack of focus).

After doing some angry googling, I stumbled across this thread in the Adobe Community forums and found a great suggestion by Butch_M (who also suggests we will never see native tethering in LR4 since it’s allegedly a standard feature in LR5). Thanks mate!Read More

April 6, 2013

Focus stacking tutorial

I recently picked up a true 1:1 macro lens, the Lester A. Dine 105mm 2.8, and have been experimenting with it endlessly. One thing I discovered about macro photography is that the depth of field is exceptionally shallow, even at the largest (smallest) aperture. This is exacerbated if you’re using extension tubes to get larger than 1:1 reproduction.Read More

October 1, 2012

DIY Makeshift Continuous Light Beauty Dish

This past Sunday it was DIY time again! Max McDonald from mondayshift dropped by and we made a Lowes Depot run (for those times when hitting one store just isn’t enough) for supplies and ideas. Ever since creating the DIY ring flash a few weeks ago, Max has been toying with tweaking the production. He’s still letting that idea ferment, though we made some definite progress on the idea over the weekend. I had something a bit simpler in mind, though, a continuous light makeshift beauty dish.Read More

September 25, 2012

More Ring Flash Goodness

By popular demand (read: one or two requests), here are a few more shots using our DIY ring flash set up from last weekend. A lot more tweaking remains to be done to the rig itself, as well as to how we’re using it, but it’s a pretty cool toy to play around with.Read More

September 24, 2012

DIY Ringflash Project

This weekend I dove into a DIY project with the help of my partner in crime, Max McDonald from mondayshift. After reading David Tejada’s excellent (not to mention affordable) ring flash tutorial, I decided it would be the perfect project for someone like me (i.e., someone completely inept at anything remotely resembling handyman-dedness).

After raiding Home Depot for supplies, Max and I set to work. It was an arduous task requiring literally minutes of physical and mental labor. Following Tejada’s tutorial to the T (give or take skipping the last eight steps), we were able to create a crude flash adapter referred to in certain photographic circles as a “ring flash.” Or just a ring flash without the quotes.Read More