Thursday, October 3, 2013


Long time ago, I've stated that a vacation is not a vacation if you don't travel out of Kuwait. This week specifically, life demonstrated for me (again) why is that.
I couldn't do much with my own projects the passing week. My car is still not working and that kind of put me up with hard times. The problem that I thought was simple got complicated and the car won't start all. I'm waiting for the electrician and his solutions in hope. During this time, I'm using my brother's car and I really hate to drive it. I just use it for necessities. This situation makes me drop my plans for visiting Failaka island as I planned prior to the vacation. No car, no photography; the perfect vacation...

Bubble I
Canon EF 50mm + Extension tube, f/4, 25-1sec, ISO500.

I've taken 2 images before I start my vacation, specifically at work. I wasn't going to post them actually but since there is not much for this week, I'm putting them here. These two images were hard to take because they are macro shots (with extension tubes rather than 100mm macro lens) and without a tripod. The actual process took actually 2 days, one day to notice the texture (on the inner side of my hibiscus mug), and the next to take the picture! Probably this is not how the contemplative photography is supposed to work as I'm currently reading, but I guess some details for such abstracts are nice - somehow gives me some confidence that I do still have an open eye for details!

Bubble II
Canon EF 50mm + Extension tube, f/4, 25-1sec, ISO500.

On the other hand, I've decided to place an order for some stuff despite the squeeze in my financial situation because of the car. In fact, I was more pushed to place such an order because of the family. Some of them needed some stuff from outside and I thought it is the time to place an order for the time being.

Source: Amazon
My first order is on Amazon for some new books (finally). My habit was to order 3 books, 2 of which are photography-related. However, this time I've ordered only 2 books beside many other stuff for the family members here. The first book is The Wild Side of Photography by Cyril Harnischmacher. I own another book for the same author dedicated to tabletop photography. This book, with quick inspection to random pages and the table of contents, would hopefully give me some insight into some tricks - ticks in the sense of special effects or probably simple solutions for some problems.

Source: Amazon
The second book is dedicated to Product Photography. It might sound a bit like tabletop photography but probably I would find more advices dedicated about commercial aspects of such photography and more information about light formations and settings. I thought maybe I should check out this field a bit in depth (specially after the Coffee Contest that was sponsored by the group). In here, it is one of the common fields of photography that people would ask about (with some gains) beside Portraiture Photography.

Source: B&H
Away from Amazon, I've ordered some items from B&H stores (typically). Even though my wishlist contains a long sequence of lenses as I'm dedicated to have some new wide angle lens with flat perception other than the highly distorted fisheye lenses that I already own. However, I think I didn't make up my mind yet about such lens, beside the narrow budget for the time being. Thus, it was better to delay such an order. Instead, I've placed an order for the RoundFlash which is a product that would help in macro as well as in portraiture. It might act as a beauty dish; a common accessory for portraiture lovers. I just hope it fits my speedlites. This cheap solution came to me like a gift in a time I was thinking of having a ring-flash to help me with my macro shots. Concerned about the high prices for such flashes, I've started to look up cheaper solutions or DIY methods, when I received a newsletter from B&H containing this product. I'm having my hopes up, let's hope my hope won't be without hopes... wha?

Source: B&H
The next toy on the list is the Tote Vision HS-1 Hot Shoe Mount for Tote Vision LCD Monitors. A small gadget just to place my portable monitor on the top of the camera (in the Hot Shoe). This is generally to help me in situations where I need to shoot myself, but that doesn't mean it doesn't help in other situations. This simple gadget would give me a great relief from using one extra tripod or monopod just to hold the portable monitor, or holding the monitor by hands while shooting at critical angles.

Finally on the list is the Kodak 3 x 3" #87B Opaque Infrared Wratten Gel Filter. I'm not sure if the size would suitable for cutting, but anyway I'm having plans to apply this to my fisheye lenses; specially the Canon 15mm because it is the one I use commonly for panoramas. There were many varieties of IR gels with codes like 87B and 87C and I'm not sure what's the difference between them. Most probably the difference is in the range of wavelengths after which waves are allowed through the filter (i.e. the threshold); but how to know this from the code is beyond me and even if I knew, I wouldn't know which one is the best for my own uses! So, let's see how it feels to do a panorama on infrared. I'm pretty sure the exposure times will be exaggerated in a ridiculous way!

Now all I have to do is wait for this delivery and pray for some good luck to "enjoy" my vacation, or whatever remained of it...

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