I agree that the Canon 7D mkII looks a good option for anyone with a big collection of Canon lenses, or anyone looking for this class of camera. However, given the long product cycle of this camera, and the only slightly incremental step up in image quality sensor wise, Canon is getting a bit behind the curve. It's still good enough for me, but you do wonder how it will look in a few years time. Although if I upgrade my DSLRs I think I'd probably be more tempted by the 70D. I checked comparison images elsewhere, and the 7D mkII sensor doesn't appear to have any clear advantage over the 70D image quality wise.
I suppose the death of the cash cow for the manufacturers is a problem, but as most digicams had become clones, it's not all bad for photographes as Dpreview says. However, I do think the pricing of these fancy digicams is a ripoff. It's stupid that some of them cost more than a reasonable DSLR and an extra lens. The cost difference is most definitely not in manufacturing.
This is actually very interesting to me. I've been interested in exploring the possibility of remotely controlled cameras for nature photography as an alternative to long lenses in some scenarios. I've haven't got round to it yet but it could open up a lot of interesting possibilities. For instance something like this with a long carbon fibre extending pole could be used as an alternative to a hexacopter in some scenarios for aerial shots.
princecody: If you think those macros are good check out mine.
Super Macro Northern Pearly Eye Butterfly https://www.flickr.com/photos/princecody/9873421005/in/photolist-oopzev-g3tS5D-g2v3ei-gdtMAj-grbunh-fvbViL-g2vg2e-fAksKL-fvrMVM-fu5tC1
Blue Dasher Dragonflyhttps://www.flickr.com/photos/princecody/14725130460/
Northern Pearly Eye Butterfly https://www.flickr.com/photos/princecody/14693411179/
Swallowtail Butterfly Semi Macro https://www.flickr.com/photos/princecody/14751875029/
This is really a bit offensive. I'm not simplistically a fan of John's work. It was an influence on me and I developed my own style based on it, which is different. You will notice my own photos get plenty of appreciation.https://flic.kr/p/nwfqtc
It really isn't helpful if I respond after this. I don't think you appreciate how it comes across claiming you are much better than very influential and accomplished photographers.
John uses fairly minimal post-processing, and I had to encourage him to use a touch more sharpening. Thomas Shahan uses focus stacking, John doesn't and he's often critical of it. This isn't a criticism of Thomas Shahan's work - I don't make negative criticism of other photographer's work, and I suggest you learn about positive criticism.
I'm familiar with Gordon Laing's camera reviews, but this is an entirely different skill set than photography itself.
I've been taking macro photographs for over 30 years, and used to use Slide Film, including Kodachrome, where the only control you have is the exposure settings. I've been following macro photography for longer, and I can assure you there is nothing unique about your work. It's fine but in no way original.
Personally I think your photos are quite good. However, to say you overestimate your abilities would be the understatement of the Century. Why do you think John got 10 likes, and you got one?
John is one of the most influential macro photographers in the world. Maybe his presence has been a bit lower in recent years.http://annakirsten.deviantart.com/journal/Meet-dalantech-Macro-Photographer-214167523
Here's his Flickr Profile and testimonials (that reminds me I need to add one). I notice you have no testimonials.https://www.flickr.com/people/dalantech/
He has 835 people following him, you have 96. Why do you think that is?
He has written tutorials that have influenced lots of top macro photographers, have you?
You could have submitted your photos to Dpreview when they requested, but you didn't. Trying to claim you are a lot better than the top guys is, well I'll let others fill that in.
nkistrup: Butterflies are commonplace, but the shot in this sequence was exceptional, and proof commonplace can be great if the photographer has the eye, and you don't need the exotic venus for fantastic shots!
Ladybug is super macro, but did the photographer pull it off? Extension tubes? This picture is extra special, by showing the eggs.
Thanks to all of the photographers for great shots ... would be ecstatic if ANY of them came from my camera.
I shot them handheld. The flash acts like a virtual high speed shutter, and freezes motion. In fact I've found it far easier to frame handheld, than with this lens on a tripod. Even with a geared head and 2 way focusing rail it can be very awkward framing at high magnification. With the camera on a tripod, it's actually easier to move the subject than the camera.
With this lens on a tripod you often find yourself having to nudge the tripod a lot. A feeding insect is constantly moving, and I think it'd be impossible on a tripod to get got framing quickly enough.
I use John K's left hand brace technique. If I hadn't learned that, it would be very difficult.http://dalantech.deviantart.com/art/Left-Hand-Brace-93226846
D1N0: Hopefully no critters or vermin were harmed during the shooting of these great pics.
The same with my macro photos. I never kill insects or anything else to photograph them.
racketman: Hi Alacher, lots of great macro work is done without flashes, indeed I would argue you can't beat natural light. You will often need a low level tripod of course and a Plamp (Plant clamp )is very useful. Stacking software will let you use wider apertures and still get good DOF when required.On Flickr check out the work of John Hallmen.
That's right Kurt. It's not a case of natural light good, flash bad. It's horses for courses. I use natural light when possible, it's just that with anything that moves, and is very small, flash is the only way possible to photograph it.
On the other subject of getting enough DOF John. I learned about the magic angle from you. I had been shooting macros for a few decades, but mostly up to life size on 35mm film i.e. the same as FF. Whilst I did above life-size photography this was more just to illustrate tiny creatures. But when I got the Canon MP-E 65mm and tried to do the sort of macro portraiture you pioneered, DOF became a problem. I did start playing around with focus stacking around 2006, but it was no good for active subjects. So I had to learn the art of getting the magic angle.
But it's a difficult concept to get across. Often I have to take a lot of shots just to get that precise angle. If it's only a fraction out it doesn't work. I was looking for something to link to on it. So if you have a blog article or tutorial I've overlooked on it a link would help.
alcaher: I like alot the photos, its obvious the photographer its very talented and With a great tehnique.I have the nikkor 105, but having trouble getting the whole subjet's body in focus ( like in this pictures), besides that. I dont use flashes... Any recomendation or site about macro phot without flashes?
There are 2 different approaches to getting the whole subject in focus. The first is what I call the magic angle approach, in which you try to find an angle where the thin DOF covers as much as the subject as possible. This is essential for my style as I tend to shoot active creatures where focus stacking is impossible.
The other approach is to use focus stacking for extended DOF (Google it). Here shots are taken at different focus points and merged with software into a single image. But it requires the subject to be relative still throughout. Most experienced macro photographers tend to use both natural light and flash for different contexts. It's possible to modify flash light so it looks similar to daylight, and that's why I came up with the concave diffusion idea. Orionmystery's blog gives an idea of what is possible.http://orionmystery.blogspot.co.uk/
Yes I've known John over the internet for some time. He sometimes uses a variation of my flash diffuser design, and I sometimes use a variation of his flash diffuser design. However, he most definitely does use flash, and his "beauty dish" diffuser is a well known design.
It's simply impossible to take greater than life-size handheld shots without flash, especially if the subject is moving. I do use natural light when possible, but it is essential for certain types of macro photography.
Thanks. Unfortunately I don't know what happened to the EXIF data. The Ladybird/Ladybug was shot with a Canon MP-E 65mm f2.8 1x-5x macro lens, which goes up to 5x life-size without attachments. The Canon 40D I shot it on doesn't save the magnification in the EXIF data but I'm guessing it was about 2.5:1. I used a Canon MT24EX macro twin flash with my own end of lens concave diffuser, and carefully turned the leaf over for the shot.
SteB: Considering the monkey definitely didn't upload the photos to the internet or download them to a computer they were certainly stolen i.e. at some point they were definitely taken by someone who had no authorization to use them or spread them. This is a mistaken and ill thought out decision by Wikimedia. What about camera traps or where an artist lets animals capture images. An assistant might physically press the shutter for a well known photographer, but I'd doubt they'd succeed in claiming copyright from the well known photographer. As pointed out there's more to a photo than merely pressing the shutter.
Thanks for that. I think the problem is the way this matter has been reported, which gave the misleading impression that the macaque simply grabbed the camera and took a photo itself. I've no reason to disbelieve the photographer's account because he does provide photos and text about his interaction with them.
A week ago I gave you a link to how David Slater took these photos. A macaque did not simplistically steal his camera as you claim. He clearly spent some considerable time following them and interacting with them. He is self-evidently a skilled photographer and knew what he was doing.http://www.djsphotography.co.uk/Tropical%20Forests/Sulawesi%20Macaques.htm
falconeyes: Oh boy, never use a programmed trigger to take a photo. Because no indirection seems allowed to keep the copyright ;)
Err, the photographer has written about this, and you appear to be slandering them.http://www.djsphotography.co.uk/Tropical%20Forests/Sulawesi%20Macaques.htm
The analogy was very relevant. David Slater who took these images was interacting with the macaques after observing them. This is what you do with camera traps. It would appear to be the problem is you simply don't know anything about wildlife photography. So stop trolling.http://www.djsphotography.co.uk/Tropical%20Forests/Sulawesi%20Macaques.htm
"Have you not read the thread?"
Didn't you read my comment? "Camera traps" were just one of several analogies I used i.e other scenarios where often the main taking photographer doesn't physically press the shutter, although it would still be usual to credit them with the image. Do you know what an analogy is, did you not see I had used several, and why did you cherrypick only one?
SteB: There's a couple of points I should have made.
1) Regardless of whether this is a real "selfie", I have seen similar wide-angle portraits of this species.
2) A lot of photos of animals taking photos are set-ups i.e. the animal is really searching for hidden food, sniffing at it, or licking it off something. The crucial point though is no animal will have had a sense or intention of taking the photo i.e. if they pressed the shutter it'd be by accident, or because they had been tricked into the action with food.
In non-human Primates this is usually called a "fear grin". It's not the same as a smile to a human i.e. a sign of pleasure or happiness. It's more of a demonstration of non-aggression to demonstrate they are harmless, to a possibly more powerful individual or animal. In my opinion the macaque was curious but nervous. In athropomorphic terms it looks to be grinning at the camera for a "selfie", but almost certainly that's not how the macaque saw it. The macaque will have almost certainly had no awareness that it was either taking photographs or posing for one. It was just interacting with another interesting Primate from its point of view.
There's a couple of points I should have made.