lumix gx8 pano

Panorama Photos

I’ll put on my ‘Old Man’ hat here and say, “Back in the day (can you hear the creaky voice??) we had to make notes with a pencil and paper to record what lens was used, and the settings on the camera like Aperture and shutter speed. We knew the ISO ’cause that was on the film.”

OK. you probably already know I’m a fan of the in-camera panoramic format with the Lumix line of cameras. Well I gotta tell ya’ they’ve made it even better. Must be some new math working but you can make your panoramas longer and the stitching is even better than before in the G7 and the GX8.

I’m stoked!

My wife and I went out to dinner tonight and I slipped out for a couple minutes as the scene was unfolding with some nice light. I dialed the GX8 to the pano setting and opened up one stop of exposure compensation to keep the shadows from blocking up since there was so much sky in the image. In Adobe Photoshop I added a Soft Light Layer to gently burn the top ot the sky back in just a bit. Here’s the result.

pansonic lumix gx8 camera panoramic photo

Red rock view from Sound Bites Grill in Sedona, Arizona at sunset. Camera and lens information below.

cmaera settings from metadata

One of the best pieces of information we have as photographers today is the metadata secured in the file for all of our images.

This information is accessed in Photoshop by going to File > File Info >Camera Data. This info makes it possible to understand settings and study how to make our images more consistent and to make situations repeatable as we understand more how our camera’s work.

Yours in Creative Photography,    Bob

sunday photo/art quote 8/23

Thanks to Karl Mullings, a photographer in Flagstaff, Arizona, for this reminder of a quote from one of his and my mentors, Donald Jack.

It came up in a forum post about how a photographer wouldn’t participate in Imaging Competition run by Professional Photographers of America. This almost 30 year photographer claims that their reward comes from hugs and referrals to other clients and there is no need to receive any other acclaim.

I now take you to the quote from Donald…

donald jack photography quote

“If you have nothing to compare something to, then what you have in front of you is the very best that it can be.” ~Donald Jack

I applaud every photographer in their efforts to become better in whatever way they can. I suggest that using the PPA system of Competition accelerates that growth. When a photographer competes against themselves and push themselves through PPA’s competition system with peers they see an incredible leap in the depth and dimension of their imagery…. I’ve seen it time and time again.

Why does that matter? “Clients are happy with the photographs I supply them.”

Better photography. It translates to more and larger sales and being able to raise prices along with opportunities to create press releases and social marketing pieces that give more credence to someone looking to choose a photographer, not to mention staying front of mind in your community.

What are you waiting for? Give it a shot and see how fast your image making skills grow.

Yours in Creative Photography,      Bob

photographers health exercise

Spent a lot of time at my desk with my face buried in the computer again today.

But,

I don’t feel tired.

Used to be after a day spent with the LED’s staring back in my face I’d be exhausted. That seems to have been taken care of by my new exercise routine. And, you can do it too!

I started with the Johnson & Johnson 7 Minute Workout downloaded as an APP  on my IPad. While it does have a routine that lasts for 7 minutes the reality is you work your way up to doing the set of simple exercises three times in a row with a bit of a warm up and and stretching to finish for a total of about a half hour. **I recommend that you do this each morning. (ease into it a bit at a time)

johnson & johnson 7 minute workout

The 7 minute workout is like having a trainer with you… ** 7 minute workout by johnson & johnson

The other part of the equation is to get up at regular intervals and get the blood moving throughout the day. For this, you need a timer on your computer. Time flies when you work on your images and are in create mode. You can’t depend on your inner clock. Believe me when you start running a timer you will be surprised every time it goes off!

Computer timer software can be found by doing this search and you can find the one that best sui.

I set mine for every half hour. I get up and do something for one minute. Stretch, a few push-ups, jumping jacks, sit ups or a brisk walk to the kitchen for a glass of water. Anything to get the blood pumping and the body away from the computer for a bit.

Makes a huge difference! Ready to try?? Download the J&J link above to your personal device…

Yours in Creative Photography,      Bob

** I am not a doctor, never even played one on TV. Please check with your health professional before starting any exercise routine.

sd card speed for lumix cameras

SD Cards

What speed should I be looking for??

Got word that the Lumix call center has been receiving a number of calls from people who are confused about which SD cards are recommended for which models. In the past “Class 10″ were regarded as the fastest out there. The link below shows the speed of each type of card.

sd card photo

Most important numbers to look for when choosing an SD Card for cameras. The write speed.

Also, most people are not aware that SD cards have three speed ratings – Read, Write and Copy. The fastest speed, usually quoted, is the READ speed. The WRITE speed is the important one to consider when selecting a card.

https://www.sdcard.org/consumers/speed

Yours in Creative Photography,    Bob

panoramas in camera

I dig clouds!

This time of year Arizona can lay out a pretty nice palette for us to enjoy. It’s called monsoon season and thunderheads will pop up in the afternoon and put on a show. I gather all kinds of cloud formations for use in my artwork. I decided to challenge the Lumix G7 (new baby brother to the GH4) to see how well it could do in capturing some panoramic photos of the sky in camera. In the past I’ve found that sometimes the lack of definition in sky scenes made it difficult and I would find stitching errors there occasionally. So I shot some soft cloud formations and some harder edged formations and here’s what happened…

cloud photo panoramic lumix g7

I really thought that the camera might have problems with the lack of definition with this panoramic cloud capture. No problem at all!

lumix g7 clouds

Overall did a great job on this one. There was one small area on the left that I had to look hard to find a small stitching error that was easily rectified with the Patch Tool from Adobe Photoshop

P1030444_lumix_g7_clouds

Here was another that had an error. It was off to the right and was in the transition area from bright clouds to very dark clouds. After a quick crop this is what’s left.

lumix g7 camera panorama

And, not to forget that the camera can create panoramas in different directions. No stitch errors on this or about 10 other files I let the G7 create.

My overall thoughts on the new panorama stitching in the G7 gets high marks. I always recommend using good camera technique. I point my body to the direction where I want to end up. Then using stomach muscles turn back to the start of the panorama and slowly pivot using the stomach to make the movement to capture the image. If it is a very important pano I will always shoot it several times just in case. Many times an in camera stitching error can be traced to operator error of not capturing the scene smoothly. Even though you can play back the panoramic image at a larger size on the camera you might miss small errors that wouldn’t show up in another pass with the camera.

Yours in Creative Photography,     Bob

sarasota seagulls

And then I felt this warm drippy sensation on my arm…

Yep! If you get underneath seagulls while they are feeding you can be shat upon.

It was interesting shooting video from behind (and under) the birds. In addition to the extra present sent my way I thought it was fun capturing this angle for something a bit different.

As I was working on the Lumix GH4 4K files I saw some still frames I want to extract to to experiment with in creating some art pieces. Since I was shooting the video in 4K I’ll be able to pull 8MP still frames. Now I wasn’t shooting in 4K Photo Mode so the frames will have some movement in them which is what I like about them. If I was to capture in the Photo Mode the shutter speed would have been automatically increased in order to make sure there was no ‘Rolling Shutter” in the still frames.

Seagulls in Sarasota, Florida video.
Lots of fun to be had with the new tools that keep coming our way!
Yours in Creative Photography,     Bob

kazm radio interview lumix and ipc

Had a radio show interview with Mike Tabback on the weekly Tech Talk radio show. I’m on once a month to chat about cameras, photography, shooting techniques, Photoshop and more…

In this weeks episode we chat about some of the new Lumix cameras and our Luminary meeting in Sarasota, Florida. In the second half we talk about the International Photographic Competition for photographers put on by Professional Photographers of America. I am one of 45 the Judges who volunteer almost a week of their time to judge and critique entries. It is quite an honor and intense experience to be part of that event!

kazm tech talk logo

Yours in Creative Photography,     Bob

sarasota sunset

Finally catching up with some of my posts after being on the road for an entire week working with the Lumix Luminary Team and helping to judge the PPA International Photographic Competition outside Atlanta.

Here’s an image from our first night in Sarasota. This was captured with the Lumix FZ1000, a camera I find in my hand on a regular basis because it is so versatile. As they say, the best camera to create an image is the one you have on you. With a built in 25-400mm f2.8-f4.0 lens that weighs under two and a half pounds it makes it pretty easy to have on hand.

sarasota sunset

Sunset after processing with NIK Filters and Adobe Camera RAW Renders the scene closer to my memory of the scene. (OK maybe a little extra zing but not much)

sarasota sunset

Capture straight from the camera. I could have preprocessed the image in camera but we were busy enjoying getting together with fellow Luminaries and even though we are all photographers we tend to ‘grab’ some images when we are not officially being paid for a specific job.

Yours in Creative Photography,     Bob

elvis lives

He’s back! Elvis does a great show!

And, I’m not an Elvis fan.

Oh wait! It’s not Elvis it’s Chance Tinder’s tribute to Elvis with the Kentucky Rain Band and it was at Sound Bites Grill the other night. But, you wouldn’t know it wasn’t the King. Chance has a great Elvis voice but doesn’t go hooky with it. He’s very interactive with the audience and from my perch in the back I could see almost everyone dancing in their seats. And, scarves were being shared with women who were willing to head on up to the stage and share some dance moves. Chance is very much the professional actor. Here’s a description from his web site…

Chance’s secret is believing that it’s not always the voice, that plays the most important part, but it’s knowing exactly how to become the man himself on that stage!  It’s basically the attitude of Elvis Presley… Shy but confident… Knowing exactly what he’s doing.  Chance isn’t an ‘impressionist’ doing a spin Elvis Presley.  Rather he’s Chance Tinder, the actor, recreating a character…  Much like actor ‘Joaquin Phoenix’ portraying ‘Johnny Cash’, or entertainer/actor ‘Jamie Foxx’ re-creating the great ‘Ray Charles’.

 

chance tinder as elvis

Chance Tinder as Elvis live on Stage at Sound Bites Grill with a bit of artwork by yours truly for the ‘Wall of Fame’.

Man I can’t recommend catching this show enough. Lots of fun and memories seemed to appear out of the air taking me back in time.

Yours in Creative Photography,     Bob

PS – Same basic gear, settings and post production as in this post.