Archive for 2010
Dec 02, 2010
A TELEPHOTO LENS is a fixed focal length lens that magnifies the image and a ZOOM LENS is a mechanical lens with the ability to vary its focal length.
What are the benefits or disadvantages are of using a long lens / zoom vs a short lens?
The zoom lens is often a favorite for new photographers because we assume that if we have a zoom with a wide focal range then we will only need one lens. Its usually a choice of economics and ease. Often we don’t always understand the basics of the lenses and what different focal lengths do to the images we create. We typically use a zoom lens just to help us get closer to our subjects without realizing how zooming affects our photo.
I will explain this in just a moment but first its important to mention that a photographers most important tool is his/her own legs. ”Legs” is the industry term for TRIPOD but thats not what I’m referring to here. I mean our actual physical legs attached to our body. If I am able, I prefer to move physically closer or further away from subject to get my desired focal length (to maintain the depth perception I want for the shot). This is of course unless I’m not unable such as shooting wildlife or if I want the affect created by zooming in tight on a subject.
What does zooming do to an image?
Basically, zooming will condense your background and a wider angle lens will keep the background off your subject. Notice the image below. Although the red bottle stays about the same size in the different focal lengths, notice what happens to the background (blue bottle) as the lens gets longer. Each longer focal length the background tends to get larger or come closer to your subject (even thought the subject remains the same size)
Sometimes this effect is desired but other times you want to the background image to appear more realistic. The human eye has a focal length of about 50-55mm (there is some debate about this but for the most part it means our depth perception is similar to a 50mm lens. For example, our human eye would see the images at about the same proportion as the 55 mm image above if we were in a room looking at it).
Portrait photographers usually prefer a focal range from about 85mm-135mm simply because it distorts the background image and if shot at a fast speed (wide aperture such as f/1.2) the background image will be completely blurred (short depth of field) giving emphasis to the subject without a cluttered background.
So, what this teaches us is that if we want to pull our background into the subject (while keeping the same framing of the subject) we simply back up and then zoom our lens in. If we want to push the background off our subject, we shoot at with a shorter lens. If we want our images to look similar to what the human eye sees, then we shoot with a 50-55mm lens (NOTE: In regards to the human eye, this has to do with depth perception and not how wide our eyes can see).
Keep these things in mind before you zoom in on a subject. The zoom is affecting much more than just how close your camera can get to your subject.
Dec 01, 2010
Nov 28, 2010
“GENTLE GIANT” :: AMIR SULAIMAN
Market Street – San Francisco, CA
© Mustafa Davis Photography
CAPTION: Amir is very serious when it comes to his photos. Most of his photos are straight faced stare downs into the camera (I know because I’ve taken most of the photos he has). So, this time I wanted people to see the jovial gentle giant I know him to be but the challenge is how to get a serious person to smile. Well, I figured it out. In fact, I figured out how to get a serious person roaring with laughter. Here’s the formula:
HOW TO MAKE A SERIOUS PERSON SMILE FOR YOUR SHOT:
#1: Take them to a very crowded place where people will notice you taking photos.
#2: Wait until a large crowd of people approaches
#3: Then with a straight face and very serious demeanor, dance around like a ballerina, sometimes balancing on one foot, other times holding the camera high above you in the air as you slow from your pirouette spin move to snap a shot…
#4: Speak in a very loud (and clear) voice saying things like: “Yes sir, thats it right there” or “Work with me baby, we’re making money right here” or “This is how you get the good shots like this” or “Don’t mind the people,we’re making art here, let them stare.”
#5: Go punch a random stranger to regain your manhood!
THATS A WRAP!
Nov 27, 2010
AMIR SULAIMAN (Poet / Writer / Renaissance Man)
Market Street – San Francisco, CA 2010
© Mustafa Davis Photography
“LOVE SONG” Lyrics and Song- Amir Sulaiman
what more can I love besides what The Loving loves
and The Loving loves The Beloved so I love
theres not enough love
you gotta make love
and remake love
co create love
gotta make Love
just make Love
Nov 25, 2010
Nov 24, 2010
Nov 23, 2010
Nov 22, 2010
Caught him looking straight into the camera as he came blasting by. How he managed to take the time to calmly glance at the camera at the speed he was going, and hanging over a 15 feet drop into the empty pool below… is a mystery to me. In the background riders wait in the shadows for their turn to drop in.
Nov 20, 2010
Nov 19, 2010
This is the Spike Jonze directed Lakai Fully Flared video intro. This is one of the most beautiful skateboard videos I’ve ever seen (at least in regards to the intro). Its simplistic in scope yet difficult in execution (not to mention dangerous). In an age when horribly produced videos are flooding the internet, its refreshing to watch such a well executed video. Simply put this video is beautiful destruction.
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