stroller

 

This is such a fun mini-series of two photos taken at FDR Four Freedoms Park in New York. I was trying for an interesting composition with a large aperture to bring the railing and the stairs out of the image and away from the background, and as I was taking my shots a child walked in and pushed the stroller away. I didn’t even noticed that this had happened at the time because I was so focused on adjusting my composition, but it turned out to make a great matching set!

I shot these with the only autofocus lens I own, the Canon 85mm f1.2, which really lives up to the hype it gets about being a “magical” and incredibly sharp lens. It’s definitely a hard lens to use… there’s no debating that. But if you spend some time with it and learn what it’s strengths and weaknesses are, I’m sure you’ll see that it’s a special lens… Canon’s best in my very humble opinion. The aperture was set to 2.5 with a 1/5000 shutter speed and -1EV since it was a very bright sunny day. Zero post processing. Straight out of the camera.

purchase

you might also like

Read More

wine

Vaperture 11/6/13: Wine. Zeiss 135mm f/2 MF: Long Island Wineries - 06

Beautiful wine grapes at Roanoke Vineyards in Long Island… one of my favorite East Coast wineries. They have a wonderful sitting area outside near the vines, and on a bright sunny day like this one, it’s the perfect opportunity to grab a few grape shots.

This photo was taken with a manual focus Zeiss 135mm f2 APO SONNAR lens, which is one of my absolute favorite lenses. The bokeh it produces is incredible, and the manual focus ring is so soft and precise, almost like a finely fashioned surgical instrument (which I am ironically  used to using in my professional life). My aperture was set to 2.5 with a shutter speed of 1/1600 and -0.7EV. As usual, there is zero retouching or post processing so this is straight out of the camera (Canon 5D Mark III).

All of the photos I shot this day were extremely difficult to get exposed correctly because the sun was so bright and the entire vineyard was essentially backlit. This taught me how important body positioning is for getting the right shot… using your body to block out, or create, shadows was the key here.

purchase

you might also like

Read More

welcome

photos of meatpacking district, new york photos, capturing a photo with a feeling, nighttime new york

This is a photo of a wonderful japanese sushi hangout on 10th Avenue between 22nd and 23rd that just begs you to come in and feel at right at home while you nosh. The colors and the warmth that come through this image are my favorite part, and it conveys  the exact feeling I get when I see it in person.

This photo was shot handheld with a Zeiss 50mm f1.4 manual focus lens set at f/2.2. Exposure 1/50. I set the exposure compensation to -0.3 after my first shot turned out a little too bright and didn’t convey the true feeling of the image. The Zeiss 50mm f1.4 certainly isn’t the best lens in the world, but I love it for capturing the feeling of a scene, especially at night. I don’t know how else to describe it, but when what you’re looking to do is capture the true feeling (vague term, I know) of what you’re experiencing, the Zeiss 50mm f1.4 just seems to nail it every time. I also own the Zeiss 50mm f2 Makro, which is a stunningly beautiful lens, but if I try to use it for photos like this where the feeling is paramount, I am never quite as happy with the result. When I’m trying to showcase the details of an object such as a striking display of architecture, the Zeiss 50mm f2 Makro blows the 1.4 our of the water, but when I want to capture that warm fuzzy feeling I get from a person or a place, the 1.4 just sings.

purchase

you might also like

Read More

where dreams come true in color

59th street bridge, new york cityscapes, new york city photos

So few New Yorkers ever get to see the island of Manhattan from this vantage point with the majestic 59th Street Bridge framing the East River and the most stunning skyline in the world. It’s such a special photo for that reason alone, and distinguishes itself from all the other “New York pictures”. This isn’t just a picture… it’s a true photograph.

This is the sister image of the black & white version ‘where dreams come true’ that you saw earlier, but believe it or not, this is actually a different image. The two photos were taken separately, using the same camera, but taken separately… not just turned black and white in Photoshop. The composition is ever so slightly different, and it keeps the images unique and special. This image was also shot with a Canon 5D Mark III and a Zeiss 35mm 1.4 aperture manual focus lens stopped down to f/11. 30 second exposure time with a remote trigger. Tripod. No retouching or processing. This is straight out of the camera on Faithful color settings.

purchase

you might also like

Read More

where dreams come true

vaperture photography

On the brand new @Vaperture twitter account, I chose to post the first photo I ever took as my first tweet. For the Vaperture blog, I’m going to do just the opposite and show you the very last photo I took… where dreams come true.

This was taken from a Roosevelt Island rooftop at about 9pm. I used a Canon 5DIII with a Zeiss 35mm f/1.4 manual focus lens set to f/11. 30 second exposure on a tripod with a remote trigger. No post processing… straight from the camera. It took me a few tries to get the composition I wanted, but this is one of my favorite pictures so far, and it’s head and shoulders better than my first-ever photos taken a few months back when I started this journey teaching myself digital photography.

Now I’m going to have to figure out a way to keep shooting on rooftops when it gets cold, and also how to get access to more rooftops in this city.

purchase

see the where dreams come true collection

Read More

flowerball

Zeiss 50mm Makro Planar lens

The Upper East Side is known for being ultra posh, and that includes their well manicured sidewalk gardens (“please curb your dogs”). These beautiful vibrant flowers caught my attention while strolling through the UES, and I decided to take advantage of an unusual vantage point to amplify the work someone put into the shaping process for this miniature garden. This would make a wonderful medium sized floating canvas for a seasonal art refresher in almost any room of the house. Taken with a Carl Zeiss 50mm f2 Makro Planar lens.

purchase

you might also like

Read More

glowing

Canon 85mm f1.2 II EF mount for Canon

Lovely morning light on a flower at the New York Botanical Gardens last fall. Beautiful soft out of focus background, and a similar energy to one of the most popular photos on this site… ‘serenity’. Taken with a Canon 85mm f1.2II lens at f/1.8.

purchase

you might also like

Read More