Alec

Alec

Lives in United States New York City, NY, United States
Works as a Photographer
Has a website at http://karasevstudio.com/
Joined on Oct 24, 2000
About me:

I'm a photographer serving New York City’s theatre and fashion industries as well as industrial and advertising photography needs of the city’s businesses. My O2 (Optically Opinionated) blog contains ideas, tips, and industry commentary.

Comments

Total: 203, showing: 1 – 20
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On article Bentley creates a 53 billion pixel car commercial (189 comments in total)
In reply to:

Yake: The angle of the stitched Bentley logo looks wrong. They seem to have rotated it to be near horizontal. It should match the angle of the seat and the roofline, which would make it more diagonal.

Also, the vertical suspension wires of the bridge have motion blur toward the bottom but not toward the top?

Who knows, maybe they'd stitched it on crooked.

Link | Posted on Jul 22, 2016 at 03:10 UTC
On article Bentley creates a 53 billion pixel car commercial (189 comments in total)
In reply to:

PaulDavis: Looks like the car was just photoshopped into the image. The angle and perspective of the car doesn't even look quite right. Not sure how you get motion blur on a stitched image as if the camera is following the car?!

This type work should be like a magic trick where people can't figure out how it was done because the technique was flawless. This one looks like the rough draft shown to the boss to show where the project is going.

What a surprise, the passenger chair has perfect lit so we can all see the logo on the seat, even though the sun is clearly at the seats back. Also amazingly there are no reflections on that part of the window.

peterwr I did not know that!! In the 80s and 90s, spinners (fake rims that keep spinning after the car has stopped) and then stillers (weighed faux rims that stay still while the car is in motion) were popular in not such good parts of many a town.

This doesn't strike me personally as a luxury detail - branding that goes out of its way to be clearly seen is a general trait for middle-class aspiration brands. Who knows, maybe Bentley is moving to capture an upper slice of the middle-class market.

Link | Posted on Jul 22, 2016 at 03:06 UTC
On article Bentley creates a 53 billion pixel car commercial (189 comments in total)
In reply to:

PaulDavis: Looks like the car was just photoshopped into the image. The angle and perspective of the car doesn't even look quite right. Not sure how you get motion blur on a stitched image as if the camera is following the car?!

This type work should be like a magic trick where people can't figure out how it was done because the technique was flawless. This one looks like the rough draft shown to the boss to show where the project is going.

What a surprise, the passenger chair has perfect lit so we can all see the logo on the seat, even though the sun is clearly at the seats back. Also amazingly there are no reflections on that part of the window.

P.S. I just thought of this: if one does truly use a "NASA-inspired robotic head", in theory it is possible to track the moving car in the "money shot" and then dial in identical motion (or appropriately changing depending on patch position in the final image) for all the robotically executed shots.

That's in theory. In practice, that head looks much too flimsy to not just point the lens but precisely replicate the motion during the exposure. I'd envisioned something akin to what we see in the Apollo 13 movie in a scene leading up to the launch, set in the VIP observation deck.

Link | Posted on Jul 21, 2016 at 15:28 UTC
On article Bentley creates a 53 billion pixel car commercial (189 comments in total)

That's a great piece of Corinthian Leather.

Link | Posted on Jul 21, 2016 at 15:15 UTC as 57th comment
On article Bentley creates a 53 billion pixel car commercial (189 comments in total)
In reply to:

PaulDavis: Looks like the car was just photoshopped into the image. The angle and perspective of the car doesn't even look quite right. Not sure how you get motion blur on a stitched image as if the camera is following the car?!

This type work should be like a magic trick where people can't figure out how it was done because the technique was flawless. This one looks like the rough draft shown to the boss to show where the project is going.

What a surprise, the passenger chair has perfect lit so we can all see the logo on the seat, even though the sun is clearly at the seats back. Also amazingly there are no reflections on that part of the window.

Nothing is random in a car commercial - one is allowed to bounce extra light onto the subject and even back up the car a certain distance and turn the wheels such that both B's on the hubs are exactly upright when it rolls back into the designated spot. Certainly choosing an angle where the seat (only the main point of the campaign) is not obscured by windshield reflections was an obvious priority early on. ALL that said, I do agree with you - that front passenger seat lighting and motion blur on the bridge certainly do not fit into the narrative.

Link | Posted on Jul 21, 2016 at 15:08 UTC
In reply to:

HSway: Samyang produces some excellent optics. It needs to improve its sample variation record, though, based on common user practice and snap-shot sample variance data provided by lensrentals where among 42 entries Samyang’s performance sits at the very bottom of the group. It’s a shame for the lenses can really be very good. And perhaps this is improving. They also brought AF lenses to the market suggesting they can go beyond what they were known for.

These lenses have identical optical formulae to their still photo and non-Xeen video oriented siblings in Samyang's lineup.

So they do breathe when focusing.

If you do not use a follow focus rig (or do but do not change lenses often), it may be a better value to get a "plain" motion Samyang and save a bundle. However if you change lenses during shoots in a rig / have a crew, the sole fact that you do not have to reconfigure the rig when changing the lenses may pay for the price difference in a few shoots.

Link | Posted on Jul 21, 2016 at 01:20 UTC
On article A photographer's intro to the world of video (100 comments in total)
In reply to:

estarkey: Like minds think alike! Great article very similar to a post I made here a few days ago.
http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/58048141

Not alike! Your post is better than this article by a very substantial margin - as measured by the improvement they could make to the target audience's footage.

A key thing in a motion picture is having something to say, because while pointless or self-serving stills are just that, a pointless or self-serving video is insufferable. Next comes forethought on how to say it using the motion picture language, in a way that is clear and eloquent. Then the execution, making sure you've not forgotten to shoot the "words" and "sentences" needed to tell the story. Lastly, piecing it together in editing.

It is pretty absurd to worry about color grading ahead of contemplating the actual point. That said, Richard's summaries of the video-specific technical issues including sound and camera motion are lucid and supported by well-crafted media. Good job Richard!

As for the legacy-free video editor that emphasizes digital tools such as histograms and tone curves, I'd recommend SONY Vegas Pro.

Link | Posted on Jul 15, 2016 at 07:05 UTC
On article Special K? Pentax K-1 Review (2652 comments in total)

I just want to give thanks where due for the camera's design. From the front, it just looks so completely like a real camera ought to look. Sony A900 had that same design intent, and both these cameras share the distinction of being the first to reward their patient lens mount followers with a full frame digital body.

Love the K1 and I'm sure it won't disappoint its users.

Link | Posted on Jul 9, 2016 at 18:31 UTC as 153rd comment
On article Sony warns against use of unauthorized third-party apps (183 comments in total)
In reply to:

Sir Corey of Deane: Sony markets a camera with a specification which the warranty backs. Can anyone really criticise Sony for voiding that warranty if the specification is altered by modifying it?

I think it's not their warranty dept's, but rather their business decision that's come under criticism, to forfeit the advantages Apple and Google have made obvious, of opening up an exciting hardware platform to 3rd party apps.

Link | Posted on Jun 22, 2016 at 12:51 UTC

They've probably rested on their laurels, as opposed to making sure the portraits they've made continue to wow.

'How can you expect that a studio can operate in this generation where everyone is clicking photos from their mobiles and digital cameras?'

This says a lot. It takes love and sweat, it takes investing in your employees, your clients, your space, to continuously build on the quality of your work, thus and reinforcing your brand. It's a lot cheaper and easier to just milk your name until it runs dry - hiring cheap labor and giving them "tell the client to smile then press this button" training, hence turning out glorified passport photos instead of portraits - until a day comes when a critical mass of your clients realize, that nephew with a D500 does legitimately take a better photo.

Link | Posted on Jun 20, 2016 at 19:09 UTC as 15th comment | 4 replies
On article Hasselblad to announce 'game changer' next week (460 comments in total)
In reply to:

Alec: Hasselblad A7RII, with a wooden grip. Actually the entire camera is made of wood, including the optics. Highly collectible.

Besides the general limited edition, serial #s 1 through 100 will be "exclusive premier select limited", made of the rarest wood species responsibly hand-picked and salvaged. Will come with a VHS tape of celebrities, brand ambassadors, company management and other qualified individuals sharing how holding the Hasselblad A7RII makes them feel completely differently from any other camera.

@Calte, @Dynaxx, Hasselblad have made some exciting high end cameras. Had people bought Lunar and Stellar en masse, the joke would have been on them. Since they haven't, the joke is on Hassy. The reality is, there were plenty of opportunities to tune Lunar and Stellar software algorithms, menus and features to appeal to the sophisticated / more IQ oriented (vs speed) target photographer, that Hasselblad missed in Lunar and Stellar.

...Or, perhaps, in the same target market vein, and since they were so obsessed about the grip, they could have integrated the vertical grip, even if that meant just using the 10 extended base screws into the standard body casting, through a tweaked bottom grip enclosure, resulting in a tighter body and a more seamless appearance.

Link | Posted on Jun 18, 2016 at 15:09 UTC
On article Hasselblad to announce 'game changer' next week (460 comments in total)

Hasselblad A7RII, with a wooden grip. Actually the entire camera is made of wood, including the optics. Highly collectible.

Besides the general limited edition, serial #s 1 through 100 will be "exclusive premier select limited", made of the rarest wood species responsibly hand-picked and salvaged. Will come with a VHS tape of celebrities, brand ambassadors, company management and other qualified individuals sharing how holding the Hasselblad A7RII makes them feel completely differently from any other camera.

Link | Posted on Jun 18, 2016 at 03:05 UTC as 136th comment | 9 replies
In reply to:

webber15: Not so "mobile" with all the add'ons...might as well use a real camera...

I agree it looks pretty absurd for just taking plain pictures. That said, there may be business needs and other use cases where an iPhone has to be the camera of choice, because of a particular mobile app needing to be involved, or network connectivity outside of wifi.

Link | Posted on Jun 17, 2016 at 22:43 UTC
In reply to:

mario GTI: It is cool if you are only limited to iPhone as far as image taking, it gives you the ability to change lenses and have a nicer handling by adding grip.
However, it is pointless if you already own any decent dedicated camera. Plus it would be PITA to normally use the phone with this thing attached.

I think it is for situations where an iPhone has to be used due to connectivity or specific apps.

Link | Posted on Jun 17, 2016 at 22:40 UTC
In reply to:

Michael Ma: The problem with Sony cameras is that you have the hottest camera for a year, then a year later it's like having a cute puppy that has turned into an ugly dog. Looking at the new model, you feel like your dog is holding you back in life. But now you're stuck with commitments.

What sucks about the circa-2018 Sony Alpha 9 is that, while the 60P HDMI 2.0a is (finally!) 12 bits per color, it's **sitill** not 4:4:4, and the balanced inputs are only available on the cinegrip, which is highway robbery at $995. One would be well advised to wait to take professional photos till at least 2024, by which time Sony will have released an Alpha 9000, which is the pro mirrorless fullframe that, frankly, Alpha 9 should have been in the first place.

Link | Posted on May 4, 2016 at 01:18 UTC

I think this is a very strong signal in SONY's favor. This isn't even about Leica or A7RII or this one adapter - with Canon AF adapter, and Nikon in the works, and non-AF for most 35mm lens systems in existence, comprise a certain momentum of a market that's spoken.

It's about SONY engineers using this data to solicit more exciting features and designs for A9 and A7RIV that would otherwise have been too risky. It's about next generation of mount adapters competing for the user's dollars - smartphone integration, features like tilt (and/or shift) with medium format lenses, etc.

Good times for SONY.

Link | Posted on Feb 12, 2016 at 13:38 UTC as 33rd comment | 1 reply
In reply to:

Alec: What I would like to clarify is lines per millimeter vs. line PAIRS per millimeter. Because the proper unit in the spatial frequency / lens sharpness context is a line pair per millimeter (a black line and an adjacent white line, whose loss of contrast is evaluated).

I hope this is a simple typo (like "calories" is commonly used whereas it's in fact kilocalories i.e. thousands of calories, but everyone understands). But I'm also not ruling out that we're being duped, and instead of 50 line pairs per millimeter they're actually talking about literally 50 lines, and thus 25 line pairs, per millimeter.

...Which would be a shame (from film days we know sharp lenses' spatial response extends to 100 line pairs per mm and beyond),
... and a sham (akin to the pundits in the early days of digital pledging that 6 or 8 megapixels was "film quality" - whereas Hollywood with real money riding on asset longevity, sticks to film even in the days of 4K).

In advertising, there's a term "Corinthian leather" - basically don't get in the way of the customers jumping to a wrongly favorable conclusion. What you say makes perfect sense in a perfect world, but we don't live in one - hence my post.

And as for the Corinthian leather, it was vinyl on 3 sides and sourced from Newark. :)

Link | Posted on Feb 7, 2016 at 23:59 UTC

What I would like to clarify is lines per millimeter vs. line PAIRS per millimeter. Because the proper unit in the spatial frequency / lens sharpness context is a line pair per millimeter (a black line and an adjacent white line, whose loss of contrast is evaluated).

I hope this is a simple typo (like "calories" is commonly used whereas it's in fact kilocalories i.e. thousands of calories, but everyone understands). But I'm also not ruling out that we're being duped, and instead of 50 line pairs per millimeter they're actually talking about literally 50 lines, and thus 25 line pairs, per millimeter.

...Which would be a shame (from film days we know sharp lenses' spatial response extends to 100 line pairs per mm and beyond),
... and a sham (akin to the pundits in the early days of digital pledging that 6 or 8 megapixels was "film quality" - whereas Hollywood with real money riding on asset longevity, sticks to film even in the days of 4K).

Link | Posted on Feb 6, 2016 at 18:03 UTC as 22nd comment | 2 replies
In reply to:

Jonathan F/2: What's the point of mirrorless if the lenses are the same size as DSLR lenses? Sony doesn't even have proper pro-oriented repair facilities like Nikon or Canon. At most these will be expensive toys for the well-heeled, amateur tech geek who likes to match their Sony TV, PlayStation 4 and Sony Alpha camera! Their idea of serious shooting entails sipping Starbucks ordered at the drive thru and shooting urban blandness of generic suburbia!

To me the main advantages of full-frame SONY mirrorless are
1) its ability to adapt to pretty much any SLR lens ever made, and many rangefinder ones, esp in the context of electronic & AF support on Canon and coming AF support on Nikon lenses.
2) main-sensor AF, removing mirror/prism/af sensor misalignment and this eliminating room for front/back focusing errors.

Camera size is related to what's comfortable to hold and operate - I would not want to shoot all day with a tiny camera and lens any more than I'd want to make furniture all day with a pocket knife.

Link | Posted on Feb 5, 2016 at 17:20 UTC
In reply to:

JurijTurnsek: Lets use this oppurtunity to let the product planning team that we want new APS-C lenses!

Exactly how many new APS-C lenses are the APS-C folks buying that each cost more than their APS-C body? Certainly SONY sees those numbers and it stands to reason, it's not seeing enough. There's a clear difference between liking the idea of there being this and that exciting lens in the lineup, and actually going and buying it.

Link | Posted on Feb 5, 2016 at 17:13 UTC
Total: 203, showing: 1 – 20
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