John M Roberts

Lives in United States Portland, OR, United States
Works as a Professional Photographer
Has a website at
Joined on Dec 21, 2007


Total: 44, showing: 1 – 20
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In reply to:

steven8217: On Fisherman on the Dam, I wonder why there are light reflections on the water when the light source (perhaps street light?) are behind the dam? Unless the light source are right on top of the dam?
An interesting light source that can illuminate the face of all 3 fisherman?
Also interesting for all 3 fisherman to spread their leg that far apart at the same time in normal walking posture?
Is there an additional layer of texture on the upper part of the photo?
Overall it seems like a stage outdoor type of stage <studio light> shot.

Just by looking at the composition, positioning of the fishermen and the light sources combine with seeing the stop action of the water, this had to be a well executed staged setup with strobes. Well done but a bit stiff in the posturing. I would have directed the fishermen's position differently for a more believable natural feel of movement. If I'm wrong and this was achieved through high iso then that would be very impressive as well yet I doubt it.

Link | Posted on Sep 17, 2016 at 21:17 UTC
On photo Last voyage in the Dramatic skies challenge (10 comments in total)

I think it's well balanced. Has a bit of a butterfly affect yet offset nicely. Lucky to pull off a one second exposure of the floating boat. Well done.

Link | Posted on Sep 1, 2016 at 06:43 UTC as 5th comment
On article Hands-on with Hasselblad X1D (813 comments in total)
In reply to: Interesring camera, I wish them well. I owned a lot of Hassie equipment at one time.
Medium Format is not a road I'm going down again, though:
Too limiting in lens choices and lens speed
Too large, heavy, cumbersome
Too expensive
Ultimately I found I was getting more photos I was happy with more easily with 35 mm equipment.

To reply to brownie "why not just get pro studio..." Think of how many film landscape photographers hauled LF view cameras and MF. Their love was not for the weight and bulk but the results. I know. I hauled around a Wisner 5x7 and various MF equipment. Had there been comparable, lighter options I would have jumped on them. Hasselblad offering up this option over studio is a plus in helping reduce bulk. It seems similar to my Mamiya 7ll as far size which is more compact than my Nikons.

You are probably correct that not many will be able to drop 9K any more than you see doing so for the Pentax but you will see some non photo pro yet career successful pros who can afford such items so I do imagine there will be a market for it. I've seen many businessmen in the field through the years boasting about their Leica and Hasselbalds. We might see the likes of Fuji stepping into this realm which could bring prices down. I'm thankful that technology has allowed me to let go of my old ways.

Link | Posted on Aug 31, 2016 at 16:56 UTC
On article 8 creative tips for shooting waterfalls (160 comments in total)
In reply to:

Starkiller: Just don't let water in motion look like gelatin.

Why not in certain cases? If I find that the long exposure will direct the balance of the image as I see fit, then it's a good thing. I'm not photographing waterfall scenes just to document "Oh that's what a water fall needs to look like in reality." I may find the surroundings to be a major feature to which the busy clutter from fast shutter capture of the water may completely compete severely with how I want one's eye to travel through my image.

Don't get me wrong, there are many times when it's the beautiful patterns within the movement of the cascading water itself that takes the show but I have found capturing those in a still image with the correct shutter speed to be very challenging.

Link | Posted on Aug 3, 2016 at 06:21 UTC
On article 8 creative tips for shooting waterfalls (160 comments in total)
In reply to:

whyamihere: Hi Chris,

Great article! The only item I'd take issue with is using the bag of rice as a drying agent, which is a lingering urban legend from the early days of mobile phones. Rice doesn't really absorb moisture all that well unless it's cooked and then re-dried, so unless you're using instant rice, you're not doing much of anything to rescue your camera and/or lens. Silica seems to outperform rice by a fair margin in terms of moisture absorption. (Also, don't leave wet items in a sealed bag where the moisture will be trapped, which doesn't help with drying at all.)

Still, a drying agent doesn't do much unless you can get at the water logged parts of the camera. In short, to properly rid your camera equipment of invasive water, you'll probably have to disassemble it. Since I don't think most people are willing to do that, the only thing to do is let everything air dry and hope for the best.

I would think carrying a bunch of the small silica packets would be way more effective and maybe even lighter.

A tip. I had a camera body get a heavy dose from a hose to which the LCD fogged when I tried a hair dryer on it. I got small pie tin filled it with silica packets, placed my camera body on that, battery out of course and all covers open. I placed that on top of a heating pad set on low all inside a paper bag. I set up a small fan for circulation, monitored it with a thermometer at around 80 degrees F for less than 24 hours. That was 3 years ago and camera is working great.

Link | Posted on Aug 3, 2016 at 05:59 UTC

Does anyone know the location of that lake in #1? I recall seeing that same location shot by David Muench years ago and I thought it was from the Trinity Alps which is in the Mt Shasta area. I'd love to visit there.

Link | Posted on Jul 29, 2016 at 21:29 UTC as 9th comment | 2 replies
On photo The Grand Canyon in the Landscape - Colour #1 challenge (1 comment in total)

What a dramatic shot! Love the clouds.

Link | Posted on Jul 7, 2016 at 05:38 UTC as 1st comment

Very pleased for the choice. I had posted a thread the other day when I thought I had hit something by mistake. The background was all white. With a footnote inquiry another led me to the option to which I switched back to black. Easier for my eyes yet other times if I wish to copy some contributors great information to paste as a side note, I have wished for a white backdrop. Good work again for the choice.

Also, article mentions more time spent reading content with white backdrop. Maybe do to the brightness keeping one up later at night than should be.

Link | Posted on Jun 27, 2016 at 04:40 UTC as 33rd comment
On photo Holy Island in the Post-Processing Salvation - # 2 challenge (10 comments in total)

Nice to see and the explanation. I was curious to see what your histogram showed and at what in camera jpg setting was used which would influence that histogram.

Link | Posted on Apr 15, 2016 at 05:59 UTC as 7th comment | 2 replies

Can anyone tell me what type of transmitter and soft umbrella that was. I curious if it is radio and provides all the speed light functions.

Link | Posted on Feb 14, 2016 at 20:06 UTC as 92nd comment | 3 replies
On article A conversation with portrait photographer Brian Smith (12 comments in total)

I enjoyed the interview. I'd like to see more. It's nice to get a perspective from obviously successful photographers. Didn't put me to sleep. Drew me to research more of his work which was the best part.

Link | Posted on Feb 13, 2016 at 19:34 UTC as 15th comment
On article Nikon D750 Review (2006 comments in total)

You can go to the Nikon site and get full specs.
For flash composition which I assume will work with manual as it does with my D700 and D800E
-3 to +1 EV in increments of 1/3, 1/2 or 1 EV

Link | Posted on Feb 8, 2016 at 04:01 UTC as 75th comment
On article Retro through-and-through: Fujifilm X-Pro2 Review (2501 comments in total)
In reply to:

LakeSuperior1: Can't wait to get my hands on this camera. Happy X-Pro 1 user and the upgrades on this new camera are everything I was hoping for. For those who complain about Fuji's video ability, keep in mind Fuji has never really been shy about their cameras being geared towards stills. Same can be said for those who want a tilting screen. They have cameras that have a tilting screen. But this isn't the intended market of this camera. In fact, most of the complaints I have read about this camera all seem to come from people who this camera clearly isn't intended for. Unlike Canon & Nikon, Fuji is willing to make cameras for certain types of shooters instead of trying to make every camera fit for everyone (that never works). Refreshing if you ask me.

I see your point. I never had an articulated screen all my years but wish I had. I found nothing rewarding having to lay on the ground for viewpoint. I don't see why this camera's market needed to have this exclusion. In fact I don't see why most don't have it unless it creates some durability issues. Now video seems much less of a necessity. I want high quality with my stills and if video were more important then I'd shop with that in mind.

Link | Posted on Jan 20, 2016 at 01:11 UTC
On article Fujifilm announces development of EF-X500 flash (86 comments in total)
In reply to:

Yohan Pamudji: Wireless communication type: Optical pulse communication (in multiple flash-unit photography operation)

Shame--would have been pretty much perfect if this were radio instead of optical.

That was exactly the first thing I was looking for but pretty much knew it wouldn't be the case. Weather sealed made me smile.

Link | Posted on Jan 15, 2016 at 21:16 UTC
On article What's missing? Ming Thein on the state of mirrorless (744 comments in total)
In reply to:

Everythingis1: Sounds like he blows a lot of money on bad gear, and wants there to be a perfect camera (for him) in each sensor size. If camera companies tried to do and offer everything he wanted they would pretty much all of them but Canon would be out of business within 3 years.

I don't think he realizes that it would raise the cost of cameras to the point where hardly anyone could buy them; not to mention how would they sell new models when MP counts are already higher than 99% of photographers need?

The article reads the exact same as the majority of posts here complaining about their cameras. All camera manufacturers have to do is be slightly better than their competition. not perfect. Based on the gear he has used, it sounds like he has had an active role in supporting the industry's lack of innovation.

I thought that the advantage of less moving parts would allow for these cameras to be more affordable even when including the beneficial functions of DSLR's.

Link | Posted on Nov 7, 2015 at 04:37 UTC
On article What's missing? Ming Thein on the state of mirrorless (744 comments in total)
In reply to:

57even: It is not perhaps surprising that mirrorless does not replace DSLR...yet.

To gain market share, mirrorless majored on the big flaw of DSLRs - size and weight. A lot of the compromises more or less derive from that. Less room for buttons, less room for large batteries, and less reserve power for really fast processors.

So, they appeal to people who want the same IQ in a smaller size, but can live without the continuous shooting, all-day battery performance, such as photojournalists, travel and street photographers. Sony's venture into FF has also offered solutions for landscape and studio photographers.

But the bulk of the pro market is involved with events, sport or advertising, and these issues are a big deal, as well as lens range, flash etc. But breaking into this market would require breaking the dominance of Nikon and Canon, which is a whole different challenge.

We are in a state of transition, waiting to see what the big two may do. Who will blink first?

Then I'm completely delusional and must be hallucinating when I compare my D800e with 24~70 with my Fuji X-E1 with it's 18~55. Yes, this not apples to apples as far as f stop yet Nikon has not offered an f 4 equivalent of high quality for me to consider your comment as reasonable. Sure if I were to compare my Canon SL 1 it might be getting closer. I find full frame DSLR's to be very heavy and bulky. When I got into full frame digital I was very surprised that it's system was even bulkier and heavier then my Mamiya M7II medium format system. Sony's full frame body is significantly smaller and I would still consider it an advantage even with it's lenses compared to DSLR's equivalent. Though I have not moved yet to mirrorless in FF and considering what I now own I still prefer actually shooting with my DSLR's for their spontaneity and ease which forgives their bulk and weight in many instances.

Link | Posted on Nov 7, 2015 at 04:32 UTC

Great shot. I am compelled to suggest cropping off about 1/4 of the right side The harsh light and tall building are distracting. Enough sunset light will be prominent in the frame leading to an even more impressive shot.

Link | Posted on Jul 11, 2015 at 19:33 UTC as 78th comment
On photo ET passport photo in the Alien challenge (6 comments in total)

I had to click on your win. I did google and found a nice tutorial for PS

Link | Posted on Mar 10, 2015 at 17:46 UTC as 1st comment | 1 reply
On photo Cold - Refrigerated Transport in the Cold challenge (18 comments in total)

Again, very nice shot cjf2. Had I voted that would have been my favorite with few others coming close. You get around.

Link | Posted on Feb 3, 2015 at 23:07 UTC as 1st comment
On photo City's Winter Quilt 001 in the Telephoto Landscape challenge (3 comments in total)

I loved your shot cjf2 as much as your other. Completely different feel. I gave it a 5. Thank you and rainrunner for the kind words.

Link | Posted on Jan 29, 2015 at 08:16 UTC as 1st comment
Total: 44, showing: 1 – 20
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