Sigma Lenses Fully Compatible with Nikon Z, But Tamron Lenses Aren’t
Sigma and Tamron are both popular manufactures of third-party lenses that are used by Nikon DSLR shooters. But customers of the two brands may have different experiences migrating their lens collections over to Nikon’s new Z Series mirrorless ecosystem.
We would like to announce that we have confirmed that SIGMA’s interchangeable lenses for Nikon mount in the current lineup do not have any issues with general operation when they are used on the “Z7”, released by Nikon Corporation, via their “Mount Adapter FTZ”.
In addition, please note the information below when using the following lenses.
Interchangeable lenses that do not incorporate an AF drive motor will operate only in manual focus.
Some interchangeable lenses shipped out before November 2013 that are not compatible with the latest DSLR cameras will not operate.
We will continue verification and provide updates on the operating conditions including discontinued models.
We appreciate your continued support for our company and products.
Tamron lens owners may not be as fortunate. Tamron just issued a statement warning that its lenses may not work correctly on a Nikon Z7 using the FTZ adapter.
Dear users and potential purchasers of Tamron interchangeable lenses.
Thank you for using Tamron products and for your continuous support.
We would like to announce that we have discovered issues that some of Tamron Di/Di II series for Nikon mount models may not operate properly on Nikon Z7, which was newly released on September 28, 2018, with Nikon Mount Adapter FTZ.
We are investigating the causes and will make further announcement of the compatibility for every single model once we find the solution.
It remains to be seen whether Tamron can work out the issues and bring full compatibility to its lineup. Otherwise, we may soon see a rash of Nikon photographers dumping their Tamron lenses on the used market in switching to the Z Series.
ExperimentalOptics 35mm f/2.7: The ‘Thinnest Fastest’ Lens Ever
A Berlin-based startup called ExperimentalOptics has unveiled a 35mm f/2.7 pancake lens for full frame cameras, which it calls “the smallest lens in the world.”
The lens is just 0.276 inches (7mm) in thickness and weighs just 1.4 oz (40g), making it an ultra small and portable lens for taking everywhere. But despite its size, the lens is purported to be “razor sharp.”
“This is not just an engineering achievement, it is truly the perfect lens for photographers: it puts the least amount of glass and kit between you and your world,” ExperimentalOptics tells PetaPixel. “It’s a joy to handle and operate, a beautifully crafted object in itself, and creates absolutely stunning results.
“Our careful choice of focal length, aperture, design and handling allow photographers to capture the world exactly as they see it and truly express their creative vision.”
Developed and tested over a period of two years, the lens features a combined Leica M and M39 mount that allows it to be adapted to a wide range of cameras. It’s a 35mm focal length on full frame cameras, a 50mm equivalent on APS-C, and a 70mm equivalent on Micro Four Thirds. Its minimum focusing distance is 11 inches (30cm) using a mirrorless adapter.
Here are some sample photos captured using the lens:
Unlike mass-produced pancake lenses that have appeared in the past, the ExperimentalOptics 35mm f/2.7 will be handmade and ultra limited. The company expects to ship just 20 of them in 2018 and another 20 in 2019.
So as you might expect, the lens doesn’t come cheap. It’s being launched through a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign, through which only a pledge of €1,199 (~$1,380) or more will score you one of the lenses if the project delivers on its promises.
At the time of this writing, though, 8 backers have already signed up, pushing the project past its initial $2,635 goal.
The Exposure Triangle; you’ve heard of it, I’m sure. It’s fabled in story and song and celebrated by photo instructors everywhere. We can even buy t-shirts commemorating the concept! There have been countless articles written about the “exposure triangle” (try a Web search and see for yourself), all with the intent of helping newcomers to photography figure out how exposure works in their cameras.
Some of these articles are obscure and pedantic and, as my friend Shaw would put it, indulge in technobabble to impress the reader with the writer’s expertise. Others make a sincere effort to communicate important information to the reader, but all of them fail to acknowledge that beyond ISO, aperture and shutter speed, there is a fourth part of the exposure equation, the part without which there would be no exposure at all; and that part is light.
The concept of a triangle to explain exposure is a recent one, and it falls short of reality in that it only deals with the writing implements and leaves out the medium with which we write. ISO, aperture and shutter speed are our way of handling the intensity of the light we encounter in order to get our optimum exposure brightness. Older photography books have charts and even dials to help us calculate proper exposure, and all of these do factor light into the equation.
Light is, after all, not constant. In the days of film, when men were men and cameras were cameras, refraining from fielding calls from your friends, and giving your location away to the NSA, each box of film that we opened had instructions on how to deal with light, the most fickle member of the previously well-known exposure quadrangle.
For direct sun, use these settings, on sand or snow, do this, in open shade set your camera this way, and when the sky is overcast, try this combination of shutter speed and aperture. For those who wanted to be able to shoot in other circumstances (indoors or at night, for instance, or in the middle of a hurricane), there were light meters.
Starting in the early 1930’s, hand-held exposure meters allowed precise measurement of light, and for only $3.95 (the price of a week’s groceries in 1956) there was also the Kodak Master Photoguide with its exposure calculators; rotatable dials that allowed the matching of ISO to the current light level to determine a range of suitable aperture and shutter speed combinations.
My 1956 copy of the Master Photoguide has dials for daylight, floodlights (incandescent), and flash as well as pages of recommendations for “unusual daylight situations” and “color photography at night.” The films of this era ranged in ISO rating from 10 for Kodachrome transparency (slide) to 32 for Kodacolor print film, to 100 for Ektachrome transparency film.
Exposure Value, or EV, is key to understanding exposure and the fact there is no one right ISO/aperture/shutter speed combination for a given level of light, but rather several, depending on the look you want to give your image.
The Sunny 16 rule is an easy place to start in understanding this chart. If you know it already, please forgive the repetition, but for those of you who don’t, here it is:
Direct sunlight during most of the day = f16 @ shutter speed of 1/ISO. In other words, ISO 500 = 1/500 sec at f16. Looking at the chart above we see that 1/500 sec @f16 has an exposure value (EV) of 17. Every other combination of shutter speed and aperture that has an EV of 17 will give the same exposure. Likewise, ISO of 64 equals an exposure of 1/60 @f16 and an EV of 13. This means that you can use any EV of 13 to get the exposure you want, but your photo will look very different at 1/4000 sec @f1.4 (movements stopped and background out of focus) than it will at 1/8 sec @f32 (moving objects blurred and background in focus to infinity and beyond).
The EV of these two settings is the same, and both (as well as all the other EV 13 combinations) are correct exposures in direct sunlight for ISO 64. If clouds roll in and your light fades, however, that fourth part of the Exposure Quadrangle requires readjustment of the other three and a new EV will reign.
Most exposure meters will calculate scene brightness in EV. My Sekonic meters do, my old Minolta meters did and my even older Gossen and Weston meters did as well. And many of the leaf shutter cameras of previous generations had an EV scale that would lock the shutter speed and aperture together in the same EV, enabling quick and easy shifting from one combination to another. Of course, we can do the same thing now (shift from one combination to another) with our digital cameras in the auto modes of aperture priority, shutter priority, and program.
The “exposure triangle” concept is flawed not only in that it overlooks the most important ingredient of photography, but it is also flawed in that the sides do not correlate in any meaningful way. In other words, they don’t tell you what exposure to use, which makes it, well, by definition, rather useless. It only deals with the camera controls and does not deal with light level.
Of course, other than revealing the truth that there are four ingredients to every image’s brightness, a quadrangle doesn’t help you calculate exposure either any, better than the triangle.
Andrew Lawn of East Anglia certainly gets the concept. He is the creator of Andy’s Handy Exposure Calculator, a printable and very useful tool for greater understanding of the four horsemen of the, er, I mean four parts of every exposure. Here’s a link to download it.
So, forget everything you’ve heard about the exposure triangle, throw out that obsolete T-shirt, and embrace the truth.
There are actually four factors in controlling the exposure of every image you capture.
About the author: Edward Crim, longtime photographer and teacher, is the director of the St. Louis Photo Authority and the primary photo instructor. The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author. Prior to devoting himself full time to the STLPA’s mission of building community through photography, Edward devoted over 5 years to developing and teaching photography programs for St. Louis photo institutions. He is also a freelance event and studio photographer for the last 15 years and managed a full-service photo lab for 12 years before that. You can find more of his work on his website. This article was also published here.
Next Generation Moss
Kate Moss is the face that, for decades, redefined the role of muse and reshaped the art of a successful advertising campaign in the fashion industry at across the board. Today, Marc Jacobs and Marc Jacobs Beauty took to their Instagrams to announce the newest member and face of the brand: Lila Moss.
Having turned 16 only five days ago, this exciting debut marks a big moment for both Lila (who is signed to her mother’s agency) and for designer Marc Jacobs. In a heartfelt statement, Jacobs’ r…
Congress Passes Bill That Lets the U.S. Govt Shoot Down Drones
The U.S. Senate has passed a bill that will give authorities permission to shoot down private drones that are determined to be “threats.” The proposed law has sparked an outcry from civil liberties organizations.
In addition to renewing the funding of the FAA until 2023, the bill includes other provisions that are geared toward modernizing the country’s aviation laws.
One of these updates gives the government the right to “disrupt,” “exercise control,” or “seize or otherwise confiscate” drones that are determined to be “credible threats.” In other words, authorities will be able to capture or shoot down your drone without a warrant.
As you might expect, civil liberties and rights groups aren’t happy about this impending law.
“These provisions give the government virtually carte blanche to surveil, seize, or even shoot a drone out of the sky — whether owned by journalists or commercial entities — with no oversight or due process,” the ACLU tells TechCrunch. “They grant new powers to the Justice Department and the Department of Homeland Security to spy on Americans without a warrant,” and they “undermine the use of drones by journalists, which have enabled reporting on critical issues like hurricane damage and protests at Standing Rock.”
“The FAA reauthorization is simply not the place for these dangerous provisions,” the EFF writes. “If lawmakers want to give the government the power to hack or destroy private drones, then Congress and the public should have the opportunity to debate how best to provide adequate oversight and limit those powers to protect our right to use drones for journalism, activism, and recreation.”
“The Alliance for Drone Innovation is thrilled that House and Senate leadership worked tirelessly together and with input from industry to pass legislation that provides a long-term FAA authorization and reinforces the agency’s central role in regulating the National Airspace System,” says ADI Executive Director Jenny Rosenberg. “This bill confirms Congress’s intent to support the ongoing work to safely integrate drones into our airspace. We applaud the critical new tools that FAA will have to help ensure drones and traditional aircraft can safely share the skies.”
The bill now moves to the White House, where President Trump is expected to sign it into law.
LG V40 ThinQ is the World’s First Five-Camera Smartphone
LG has unveiled the new V40 ThinQ premium smartphone. It’s the world’s first smartphone to feature five separate cameras — three on the back and two on the front — and is designed “to redefine the standard of smartphone photography,” LG says.
The back of the phone features a 16MP 107-degree super wide-angle lens, a 12MP f/1.5 standard angle lens, and a 12MP 2x telephoto lens.
“The three lenses allow for shutterbugs to frame different shots without changing position relative to the subject,” LG says.
On the front of the camera are a 5MP wide-angle lens and an 8MP standard angle lens for selfies.
Working together, the two front-facing cameras can capture self-portraits with a bokeh effect featuring a shallow depth-of-field. A slider on the screen allows you to choose how much background blur you’d like to see in the selfie. There are also lighting and special effects for further adjusting the look of selfies.
Compared to its predecessor, the LG V30, the V40 ThinQ has a main rear camera image sensor that’s 18% larger with 40% larger pixels (1.4μm, up from 1μm). The main rear camera also has half the shutter lag, 50% faster Dual PDAF autofocusing, and a “significantly faster” burst mode.
A new intelligent feature in the camera is the AI Composition functionality of the AI CAM. It frames, captures, and recommends alternative photos to the ones you shoot, in case you think it did a better job at capturing what you were aiming for.
Other features and specs include advanced HDR, AI Auto White Balance, AI Shutter, Cine Shot (for making cinemagraphs), 3D Light Effect, Makeup Pro, Custom Backdrop, My Avatar, AR Emoji, a 6.4-inch QHD+ (3120 x 1440) OLED FullVision display, a 32-bit Hi-Fi Quad DAC sound system, Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, 6GB RAM, and 64GB/128GB internal storage.
The LG V40 ThinQ will cost between $900 and $980 depending on which carrier you purchase it though, and it’ll be available in the US starting October 18th, 2018.
Photographing Perfume Packaging Using Everyday Objects
As a still life photographer, I spend a lot of time in my studio experimenting with different types of products. In a recent shoot, I did just this by photographing a perfume box. But instead of photographing the packing by itself, I used everyday objects to create the scene.
Still life photography isn’t any secret. That’s why I created this walkthrough to share the setup and story behind this image. With a little ingenuity and know-how, you can create a work of art that will help to really capture the attention of the viewer.
Using regular shelves along with a plate of black glass, I tried to make this scene came to life. Like building blocks, the order of objects changed multiple times before the composition fell into place.
Upon completion, three strategically placed studio lights became central to optimize the shadows, texture, and form of the perfume packaging. Honeycomb grids mounted to the lights, which provided soft light across the three lighting setup.
Aiming the first light at low power at a higher angle provided enough light to light the scene. Positioning the second lamp at the same level as the product enabled feathered light at even lower power to fill the side of the box.
Finally, the third light helped separate the product from the background. The soft light found a home out of view behind the backdrop diffusion panel and provided just the right amount of light.
I took around 100 images until I received a final result. The result was an image that incorporated all of the beautiful textures of the gold lettering and the bold dark shadow on the perfume. By composing the still life this way, I added some interest and shape to the entirety of the scene.
Once the images were in Adobe Lightroom and simple edits had been performed, Photoshop was the next destination. Here, two of the photos were masked to obtain the highlight details from one and the sharp shadow details from the other.
So now you know the behind the scenes of this photograph. I encourage you to look for everyday objects to add to your compositions. All it takes is a little creativity and patience and you can come up with some fantastic still life photographs.
About the author: Martin Pitonak is a still life photographer based in Slovakia and available worldwide. The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author. You can find more of Pitonak’s work on his website and Instagram. This article was also published here.
Wedding Photographer Pushes Stepmom Aside to Get the Shot
Wedding photographers often complain of ‘Uncle Bobs,’ or relatives who get in the way of professional photographers while trying to snap their own photos. When photographer Ashley Easterling encountered this during a wedding ceremony recently, she refused to allow the relative to ruin the bride and groom’s first kiss photo.
The 46-second video shows Josh and Lorna Dane Gantt being pronounced as husband and wife. As Easterling stands in the aisle to capture their first kiss as a married couple, Easterling’s stepmother (who had repeatedly stood in the aisle to shoot photos with her smartphone) stepped in front of Easterling and started shooting her own snapshots.
Without any hesitation, Easterling pushed the stepmom aside with her shoulder, stepped up to the couple, and managed to get her shots before the first kiss ended.
“I politely asked several times for her to move,” Easterling says. “She popped off something smart… I told her I was the paid photographer, then she told me I wasn’t doing my job and walked right in front of me. Nope. I’m paid to do a job, and dang it… this girl is doing her job one way or the other.”
While the stepmom may not have been happy about losing the battle, the bride was delighted that her photographer fought to capture their special moment.
“When you have the best clients in the world,” Easterling says. “Lorna Dane Gantt, I swear we were destined to be besties.”
LensCoat Unveils Shoulder Protection for Carrying Heavy Tripods
LensCoat has unveiled three Shoulder Protection Products: the LegPad, LegCushion, and LegWrap Pro. They’re designed for outdoor photographers who spend a considerable amount of time walking with heavy tripods on their shoulders.
The LegPad is a shoulder pad used for carrying tripods while the legs are closed. The 1.25-inch-thick (3.175cm) shock-absorbing pad sits between your tripod and your shoulder and makes carrying it more comfortable. Made of a dense foam wrapped in a spongy soft neoprene shell, the LegPad is water resistant and easily attaches with Velcro-brand hook-and-loop fasteners, staying on your tripod even after you open the legs.
The LegCushion is also designed for carrying tripods with the legs open. The cushions sit on the inward-facing sides of the legs near the head and are attached with Velcro fasteners. They stay attached even after you close the tripod legs.
The LegWrap Pro features spongy soft neoprene wraps that surround the top of the legs on your tripod. There’s also a shoulder pad that attaches to the sewn-in Velcro fasteners for carrying your tripod with the legs open.