Tag: Canon EOS 20D

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Admiring God’s Paintbrush

As autumn colors lavish landscapes across the Northeastern United States, but eternal summer simmers in Southern California, I must go back to the past to find something appropriate to share—from our family’s time living a few miles outside the Washington, DC Beltway. On Nov. 2, 2005, I lugged outside Canon EOS 20D, mounted with the EF 70-200mm f/4L USM lens obtained a few days earlier.

The Featured Image and companion, both composed as captured, are picks from a series for each. Looking over the set reveals similar shots at different apertures. Interestingly, for the first, I prefer the renders where the house is less blurred. Vitals: f/18, ISO 800, 1/125 sec, 200mm; 12:51 p.m. EST.

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Bumble Bee Delights

Yesterday we returned to 2007 with a backyard portrait of bunny Daisy. A few months earlier, June 24, I shot bug and flowers on a mini-medium that separates Decatur and University avenues where Newport Mill Road intersects both, in Kensington, Md. According to Google Maps street view, from June 2022, the place remains—even fuller and lusher than I recall.

I used Canon EOS 20D and EF100mm f/2.8 Macro USM lens to shoot the Featured Image and companion. How strange is it that I clearly remember this outing when others aren’t recollected. I can’t guess why are the quirks of memory, being such an otherwise meaningless moment.

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Gone But for Memories

Call me shocked. On several occasions during the two years leading up to the SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome Coronavirus 2)/COVID-19 lockdowns—and at least once after they started—I contacted the woman who managed our rental in Kensington, Md. We lived there just shy of a decade, and I felt sentimental about the place. Should the house become available to rent, or to buy, could she let me know? Absolutely. Promises. Promises.

Opportunity passed unbeknownst to me, and I am baffled about missing it. The house, previously purchased for $56,000 in 1965, sold for $475,000 a few months ago. I had checked on the property’s disposition from time to time and never saw a listing, nor is there any indication that there ever was one. Perhaps the tenants bought the place. I’ll never know.

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Praising the 135mm

In a post dateline eight days ago, Phoblographer publisher Chris Gampat explains “What You Should Know Before Buying a 135mm Lens“. He describes my favorite Prime focal length: “a magical wonder for many photographers”; “optically speaking, no one looks bad on the other end of this lens”; “notoriously hard to get in focus”; and “render[s] super tight if you don’t have a lot of room”. Also calling 135mm a “pain”, he acknowledges: “I’ll admit they can create beautiful photos”.

If shooting an interchangeable lens camera, rather than fixed-28mm Leica Q2, I absolutely would favor 135mm. Honestly, I might go 85mm for close spaces but otherwise mainly use the longer focal length. I love 135mm.

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He Knows No Limit

I can’t explain why the Featured Image appeals to me. Maybe the gent’s mouth caught in speaking motion is reason combined with tilt of head, necklaces hung around neck, and one presented in hand. Is he selling the beaded strings? Seeking donations? I want to know.

The moment is from the Labor Day Parade on Sept. 5, 2005 in Kensington, Md. I used Canon EOS 20D for the portrait, which is composed as shot. Vitals: f/10, ISO 400, 1/500 sec, 40mm; 10:26 a.m. EDT.

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For Free Speech and Democracy

Fifteen years ago—April 14, 2007—the Wilcox family rode the DC Metro into downtown for the annual Cherry Blossom Festival Parade. The Featured Image is one of many street shots from Canon 20D and EF 135mm f/2 USM lens. This one, composed as captured, is previously unpublished. Vitals: f/5.6, ISO 200, 1/500 sec, 135mm; 9:32 a.m. EDT.

I choose the photo for the strangest of reasons: The riders and their American flags as symbols of democracy and freedom. Why today? Elon Musk bought Twitter, which he plans to take private and supposedly will reestablish as a platform for free speech.

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It’s a Cultural Cold War

The United States continues to seek new punishments against Russia for its invasion of Ukraine, which started on Feb. 24, 2022. Americans rally to the cause with good intentions that may not mean much and that may do more harm than good. For example, pouring out Vodka and evoking spirit (no pun intended) of the Boston Tea Party accomplishes what?

As Dan Kois writes for Slate: “Stop Boycotting Random Russian Things. You are not stopping the war in Ukraine”. Nutgraph: “It is dumb to boycott things that have no actual connection to Vladimir Putin or even, in some cases, to Russia. But it’s also foolish to demonize every vestige of Russian culture, and ordinary Russian citizens, and Russians abroad, as a result of a catastrophic war launched by a despot”.

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The Grillers

From the same Greenbelt, Md. church picnic as yesterday’s “Pooh Party“, we present another moment. I used Canon EOS 20D and EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM lens to capture the Featured Image on Sept. 18, 2005. Vitals: f/6.3, ISO 400, 1/400 sec, 70mm; 12:22 p.m. In Capture One 22 post-production I applied style “Oslo 1”, working from an original JPEG. The portrait is composed as shot.

If the prognosticators of climate doom get their way, grilling events like this will someday soon be but a memory. We will all consume protein-infused plant matter made to look like meat because—so they say—cows and chickens produce deadly global warming gases. Eh, and people don’t?

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Pooh Party

One of my posting goals for 2022 is more people photos. But my catalog of recent choices is paltry pickings, so I reach into the past for the Featured Image, which comes from a church picnic in Greenbelt, Md. on  Sept. 18, 2005. I used Canon EOS 20D and EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM lens for the portrait. Vitals: f/8, ISO 400, 1/400 sec, 43mm; 12:18 p.m. EDT. Composed as shot.

This is the first photo published using Capture One 22. In post-production, I applied styles “Stockholm 1” and “Effect—Red Only”, working from a JPEG original.

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Forever Autumn

It is juxtaposition time—autumn leaves to contrast yesterday’s Spring sunflower. I used Canon EOS 20D to capture the Featured Image on Nov. 5, 2005. Vitals: f/3.5, ISO 800, 1/125 sec, 110mm; 4:14 p.m. EST. Image is presented as straight RAW-to-JPEG conversion, which means no alteration; composed as shot.

Reviewing this site’s posts, I prolifically blogged during November 2005—despite my demanding, full-time job as a trade analyst. Some of my most personally iconic musings were written during that month. Here’s a shortlist, in order of publication:

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A Remembrance for Mac OS X’s Big Birthday

Where did the years go? Today marks the 20th anniversary for the release of Mac OS X. In March 2001, as a staff writer for CNET News, I lambasted Apple for shipping the operating system without support for existing hardware—CD-R and DVD drives, mainly. Unfortunately, with my byline stripped from stories and broken links caused by content-management system updates, I can’t find the original article. I came up empty on the Internet Archive Wayback Machine, too. But I’ve got reader emails, and my responses, from the days before on-site commenting.

But before we go there: OS X’s big birthday is the second of four that are profoundly important to Apple this year. We start with iTunes, which the company released in January 2001. Third is opening of the first Apple Store in May, followed by the original “Classic” iPod in October. In Feb. 3, 2011 analysis “Apple’s Gang of Four“, I explain why all are together foundational for the company’s later success—particularly with launch of iPhone on June 29, 2007.