Happy Thanksgiving!

Blue Sky over the Blue Ridge Highway
Blue Sky over the Blue Ridge Highway near Blowing Rock, NC | Canon 5D Mark II and 24mm f/3.5L TS-E | Multiple exposures at f/16, ISO 100

Here in the United States its Thanksgiving, a day to be with friends and family.  In the spirit of sharing, I thought I’d post one of the images that blends a technique I’ll be writing more about soon: blending HDR and stitching to get large photographs with incredibly wide tonal values while still looking pretty “normal!”

Black Creek Greenway Stitched HDR

Black Creek Greenway
Black Creek Greenway, Cary, North Carolina | Canon 5D Mark III and 24mm f/3.5L TS-E | Multiple exposures at f/11, ISO 200

Recently I began working more with landscape photography and, in turn, my old habit of making multiple photographs of a scene and stitching them together.  Related to that, I recently began to explore what would happen if I made multiple versions of the multiple pictures to be stitched together: that is, what if you bracket for High Dynamic Range photography with each “view” in a panorama or other stitched image.  The results can be pretty amazing, but so is the amount of work that can be required to pull it off!  I’ll be writing more on this topic after Thanksgiving!

An old lens updated…and enlarged?

Science library at Noyce Hall, Grinnell College
Science library at Noyce Hall, Grinnell College, Iowa | Canon 5D Mark II and 24mm f/3.5L TS-E Mark II lens | Exposed 1/20 sec. @ f/3.5, ISO 100.

Lens envy is something every photographer experiences, and sometimes it’s made worse when a lens you love is replaced with a newer, more expensive version.  I suppose this is what people who have iPhone’s go through every June.

About five years ago I purchased a Canon 24mm f/3.5L TS-E lens for its ability to control perspective…that is, I wanted to get a view looking “up” at a building without the lines converging.  And it was a small, albeit dense, lens, so it was pretty easy to slip into a camera bag and take it along just in case a landscape or architectural situation demanded it.  But it had its flaws, chief among them being that the tilt (also known as swing) movement comes from the factory 90 degrees from the shift (rise and fall) movement.  That means that if you want to use shift to get a higher perspective, but also tilt the lens downward, then you’re out of luck unless you send the lens in to Canon to be altered so that they’re on the same plane.

Canon 24mm f/3.5L TS-E lenses
Canon 24mm f/3.5L TS-E lenses - the Mark II is on the right, and now takes an 82mm filter thread instead of the 72mm thread on the older version. | Canon 5D Mark II and 85mm f/1.2L II lens | Exposed 1/80 sec. @ f/2.8, ISO 100.

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