Saturday, September 22, 2012

May your Sunday be as beautiful as a flower / Che la vostra domenica possa essere bella come un fiore

These photos all shot  at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden with the Micro Nikkor 60mm F 2.8, show how shallow depth of field can open up a new world in photography.

Queste foto, tutte scattate al orto botanico di Brooklyn  con la Micro Nikkor 60mm F 2.8, mostrano come una profondita' di campo limitata possa scaturire un mondo nuovo della fotografia.

To add to the confusion.../ Per aggiungere alla confusione...

I believe that Sigma's new  lens nomenclature is simply adding to the confusion of lens names. The company believes that it will make it easier on the consumer. We shall see.
Credo che la nuova nomenclatiura degli obiettivi Sigma aggiunga alla confusione causata da una pletora di nomi diversi.  La ditta crede che questi nomi siano piu' facili agli utenti. Vedremo.

Sigma Announces Lens Line Renaming and New Lenses at Photokina

Sigma-photokina-2012.jpg Sigma believes that this will make things easier on photographers looking for lenses, especially on novices. Sigma lenses will now be divided into three major categories; Contemporary, Art and Sport.

Contemporary lenses consist mainly of standard, telephoto and high-magnification zooms - lenses that work nicely for a variety of purposes. Art lenses include large-aperture primes, wide, ultra-wide, macro and fisheye lenses. Sport is almost entirely made of telephoto and super telephoto lenses as well as the zoom versions of each.

The first lens to be released under the Contemporary title is a 17-70mm F2.8-4 DC MACRO OS HSM which is an upgrade over a similar lens released in 2009. The new lens is more compact and newly designed.

Sigma's first Art lens is the 35mm F1.4 DG HSM, which provides pleasing bokeh and strong focus on the subject when opened to f/1.4.

The Sport lens will also be an update, though it's an iteration on a lens released in 2011. It offers a shooting length of 300mm and aperture of f/2.8. Sigma says that this lens, as well as all future sport lenses, will be dust and moisture resistant.

    Friday, September 21, 2012

    Have a peaceful Saturday/ Vi auguriamo un sabato di pace

    Sicilian vegetation / Vegetazione sicula

    Observing these photos all shot with the Canon G-9, it is interesting to note that Sicily sports a great variety vegetation. Cactus pears next to olives that are next to palm trees that are next to lemons. It is a paradise of sorts as the growing season is 12 month long and all the plants that have been introduced here appear to do better than on their native soil. A sort of deracination in reverse.
    Quando si osservano queste foto, tutte scattate con la Canon G-9, si nota interessantemente che in Sicilia c'e'una grande  varieta' di  vegetazione. Fichi d'India accanto ai pini che sono accanto alle palme che sono accanto ai limoni, per esempio. E' una sorte di paradido dove si puo' coltivare in ogni mese dell'anno.
    E interessante che tutte le piante che sono state introdotte sembrino di essere piu' rigogliose che nelle propie terre d'origine. Un deracine' all'opposto.

    Winter in Iceland? You never know..../ Un inverno in Islandia / Be non si sa mai...

    An interesting proposition. 
    Una proposta interessante.
    By Erez Marom  
    No matter where you live, the allure of travel to a locale quite different from your own is hard to resist for 
    any  landscape photographer. And chances are, there are few places anywhere in the world as different from where you're sitting right now than Iceland. Put simply, it's a photographer's dream destination. The landscape is incredible, with pitch-black volcanic terrain, immense glaciers and towering volcanoes. And to top it off, airfare can be very reasonable and in-land travel is easy to arrange. With all this going for it, Iceland has long been on my list of places to photograph. And not long ago, I had the opportunity to explore this incredible terrain and create some memorable images.

    Sunset in Breiðamerkurjökull 0.5sec, f/13, ISO 100
    Canon 5D Mark II, Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II, Lee GND and ND filters, Heliopan CPL.

     Credit photo to Erez Maron

    In this four page article I'll share with you my experience of shooting with fellow photographers in Iceland, introduce you to some remarkable areas of the country to photograph and provide some behind the scenes info for two of my favorite images from the trip.
    Click on the link to DP review for the full article

    Thursday, September 20, 2012

    Have a great fall / Abbiate un grande autunno

    Fall is here and as usual one wonders where summer went. However fall is a great season of harvests, colors and beautiful cool and sunny days.

    L'autunno e' arrivato e come al solito ci domandiamo dove se ne sia andata l'estate. Ma L'autunno  e' la stagione di vendemmie, colori e belle giornate fresche e soleggiate.

    Innovative design / Un design innovativo

    Hasselblad, manufacturer of the world’s most advanced medium format camera system, has announced a revolutionary plan to market a state-of-the-art, Italian-designed ‘ultimate luxury’ mirrorless, interchangeable lens camera early next year.


    Wednesday, September 19, 2012

    Have a perfect Thursday / Abbiate un giovedi' perfetto

    While we are in Venice... / Mentre siamo a Venezia...

    When one sees the usual photos of Venice it is easy to come away with the impression that all is spacious and grand just as the Grand Canal. However there another side of Venice; the very narrow "viuzze" or tiny streets that make up the bulk of Venice's plan. It is easy to see how getting lost is inevitable.

    Quando si vedono le solite foto di Venezia e facile intuire che tutte le via siano grandi come Il Canal Grande.
    Ma Venezia ha un'altro volto; quello delle viuzze che formano la maggior parte della citta. E' facile capire come perdersi sia inevitabile.

    PHOTOKINA - And now this / Ed ora questa

    Right on the heels of Nikon's announcement of the "full frame" D-600, billed as the cheapest DSLR, Canon announces the D-7 billed as the smallest DSLR. It is of note that the 24X36 mm format, called "full frame" is alive and well.

    Subito dopo l'annuncio della D-600 della Nikon, nominata la DSLR  "full frame"piu' economica,  la Canon annuncia la D-7 e la chiama la piu' piccola DSLR "full frame." E da notare che il formato 24X36 mm chiamato "full frame" e vivo e rigoglioso.

    Canon's press reelease below:

    L'annuncio stampa della Canon


    The EOS 6D Digital SLR Camera Includes a New Full-Frame Sensor, Built-in Wireless and GPS
    LAKE SUCCESS, N.Y., September 17, 2012 - Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, today introduced the EOS 6D Digital SLR Camera, a versatile mid-range full-frame camera with the durability and performance professionals require and the creative imaging options serious photographers crave.  Canon has coupled the incredible image quality of a newly designed 20.2-megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor and DIGIC 5+ Image Processor with the creative potential of built-in wireless transmitter and GPS features. The camera also includes an 11-point AF array and 63-zone dual-layer iFCL metering sensor together with 1080p Full HD video capabilities, in an affordable camera body. Building upon the qualities that made the EOS 5D Mark II camera so successful, the EOS 6D bridges the gap for budget-minded photographers, videographers and cinematographers who are eager to step up into the world of full-frame imaging.
    "The introduction of this camera completes a well-rounded ecosystem from input through output for Canon, allowing us to provide the right combination of features for every level of photographer. We believe the EOS 6D Digital SLR Camera along with our new PIXMA Pro printers will help unlock the creative vision of so many who aspire to capture and display their artistic abilities," stated Yuichi Ishizuka, executive vice president and general manager, Imaging Technologies & Communications Group, Canon U.S.A.
    Designed for advanced amateurs and videographers making the move to a full-frame Digital SLR, the EOS 6D fits neatly into Canon's professional imaging system with an advanced feature set including full manual options for creative control in addition to new and intuitive automatic settings to help even novice photographers capture great images. The camera's construction helps meet the needs of professionals with a 100,000-cycle shutter durability and EOS Integrated Cleaning System for high-quality vibration-based dust removal. Among the many advancements in Canon's new EOS 6D is the Company's proprietary DIGIC 5+ Image Processor that powers the camera's fast 14-bit analog-to-digital conversion for exceptionally smooth color tones and gradation.  The camera offers a full-frame, 20.2-megapixel CMOS sensor and continuous shooting up to 4.5 frames per second (fps).
    Thanks to the combination of its new CMOS image sensor and the powerful DIGIC 5+ image processor, the EOS 6D provides a wide ISO range from 100-25600 with a low setting, L: 50 and two high settings, H1: 51200 and H2: 102400. These outstanding low-light capabilities allow the EOS 6D to easily capture dimly lit scenes such as wedding ceremonies, indoor corporate events, or landscapes at dusk. To support the ample sensitivity of the new camera's sensor, the EOS 6D camera's Auto Focus (AF) system includes a newly-developed 11-point AF sensor featuring a high-precision center cross-type point with an exceptional EV -3 sensitivity rating for accurate focusing even in extremely low-light conditions.
    The EOS 6D has a large 3.0-inch Clear View LCD monitor with 1,040,000 dot VGA resolution and 170 degree viewing angle, with high-transparency multicoating for maximum protection and clarity when viewing images or navigating menu screens. When used for Live View shooting, the camera's bright high-performance LCD screen provides 100 percent coverage, for easy focusing and framing.
    Full-Frame 1080p Full HD Video
    Videographers, student filmmakers, and creative independent spirits will appreciate the full-frame video capabilities of the EOS 6D in an affordable and compact body.  Borrowing from the best of the EOS 5D-series, the EOS 6D provides full manual control over exposure and audio levels while recording video.  The camera features NTSC and PAL video modes at multiple frame rates, recording 1080p at 30 (29.97), 24 (23.976) and 25 fps, 720p at 60 (59.94) and 50 fps and standard video at 30 (29.97) and 25 fps.  The camera provides up to 29 minutes and 59 seconds of continuous recording (with 4GB automatic file partitioning) in selectable All i-frame[i] or IPB compressions with embedded timecode. Especially when used with large aperture lenses, the EOS 6D camera's full-frame sensor offers a tremendous degree of creative control over depth-of-field, helping users to achieve pro-quality cinematic effects in Full HD video recordings.
    Built-in Wireless and GPS
    For the ultimate in DSLR connectivity and control, the EOS 6D features a built-in wireless transmitter which allows the camera to share images and video with the user's choice of wireless devices such as select PowerShot cameras, smartphones, or tablets, as well as cloud-based destinations including social networking sites through the Canon iMAGE GATEWAY[ii] [iii].  A very intuitive and useful wireless feature is the new, free Canon EOS Remote app available for iOS and Android systems which will allow a smartphone or wireless device such as a tablet to remotely connect, control and operate the connected EOS 6D[iv]. This seamless connection and control will open new opportunities for professional photographers shooting weddings or remote wildlife, without the need for tethered operation or accessories.
    For on-location shooters, landscape photographers or enthusiast photo travelers, the EOS 6D features a built-in GPS receiver to record longitude, latitude, elevation and Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) as EXIF data for seamless geo-tagging while shooting.  The GPS coordinates are appended to each image and easily syncs with Canon software or mapping apps on social network sites to show image locations. Use of UTC data allows images to be chronologically mapped and trails plotted and recorded.[v]
    Boundless Creativity
    To help photographers unlock their full creative potential and explore all the different avenues of digital photography, the EOS 6D includes several creative modes for image capture.  First is the HDR (High Dynamic Range) mode allowing the camera to capture three separate exposures and combine them in-camera for a stunning image capturing both enhanced shadow detail and bright highlights. Next is the camera's Multiple Exposure mode where users can combine up to nine individual images into a single composite image, with no need for later computer post-processing. Four different compositing methods are provided for maximum creative control, including Additive, Average, Bright and Dark. Compositing results can be viewed in real time on the camera's LCD monitor, and there is a one-step Undo command that allows photographers to delete an image and try again if desired. The EOS 6D will even allow photographers to specify a previously captured RAW image as the starting point for a new Multiple Exposure composite image.  In addition to HDR and Multiple Exposure modes are Canon's standard Scene Intelligent Auto and special scene modes to capture great images with ease. The camera is compatible with SD, SDHC, and SDXC memory cards including the new Ultra High Speed (UHS-I) cards.
    Pricing and Availability
    The EOS 6D Digital SLR Camera will be sold in a body-only configuration at an estimated retail price of $2,099.00 and it will additionally be offered in a kit version with Canon's EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM zoom lens at an estimated retail price of $2,899.00. Both configurations are expected to be available in December 2012.

    About Canon U.S.A., Inc.                                                      
    Canon U.S.A., Inc., is a leading provider of consumer, business-to-business, and industrial digital imaging solutions. With approximately $45.6 billion in global revenue, its parent company, Canon Inc. (NYSE:CAJ), ranks third overall in U.S. patents registered in 2011† and is one of Fortune Magazine's World's Most Admired Companies in 2012. In 2012, for the ninth consecutive year, Canon U.S.A. has received the Readers Choice Award for Service and Reliability. Committed to the highest level of customer satisfaction and loyalty, Canon U.S.A. provides 100 percent U.S.-based consumer service and support for all of the products it distributes. Canon U.S.A. is dedicated to its Kyosei philosophy of social and environmental responsibility. To keep apprised of the latest news from Canon U.S.A., sign up for the Company's RSS news feed by visiting

    Tuesday, September 18, 2012

    Have a wonderful Wednesday / Abbiate un mercoledi meraviglioso

    Juniper valley Park in Queens. Canon EOS 1D II and the 16-35mm F 2.8 L.

    Venezia senza sole / Sunless Venice

    It is not unusual to see sunless days in Venice especially in the spring. These photos date from April 15, 2008 and show a rather romantic Grand Canal.
    Durante la primavera i giorni senza sole non sono insoliti a Venezia. Queste foto rasalgono al 15 aprile del 2008 e presentano il Canal Grande in una luce  molto romantica.

    Just amazing / Una Meraviglia

    I remember when in 2001, i purchased what i believed to be a very high capacity memory card a CF card that had 256 MB of memory. It was also very expensive. And now this, 1000 times the capacity. Just marvelously unbelievable
    Ricordo quando nel 2001 ho comprato una schiedina CF che aveva una capacita'  di 256 MB, considertata altissima. Mi ha costata tanto.

    Lexar Debuts the First 256GB SDXC UHS-I Memory Card

    When you need to capture photographs fast or make HD video, you need a card that is up to the task.. Unfurtunately, most of these ultra fast cards are d capacity. Lexar has revved that up with their new 256GB SDXC UHS-I memory card.

    It's the first card in the industry with that speed and size and, when using a USB 3.0 compatible card reader, you're able to transfer data at a minimum of 60MB per second. It's important to note the USB notice here.

    "Professional photographers and videographers are being tapped to capture more HD video, in addition to still photos, when out on assignment. These new demands often leave them with less time and resources to shoot," says Lexar marketing director Manisha Sharma. "High-performance, high-capacity cards like this one enables these photographers to gain back time normally wasted on changing cards or transferring images."

    The cards shoukld ship next month (October, 2012), watch out;  the MSRP is $899.99 USD. Ouch!

    Monday, September 17, 2012

    have a splendid Tuesday / abbiate un martedi' splendido

    Brookkyn Botanical Garden, photo by Marcy Galatioto

    Rare clouds / Nuvole rare

    Cloudy days are rare here in Castellammare and when they do occur, opportunities for interesting photos come up. We see the marina on a cloudy day and the feeling is special.
     I giorni nuvolosi sono moto rari qui a Castellammare e quando ce ne sono si creano grandi opportunita  fotografiche. Vediamo la marina in un giorno nuvoloso che crea un feeling speciale.

    Sunday, September 16, 2012

    Have a rosy week / Abbiate una rosea settimana

    Wine show / Lo show del vino

    They have been making fine Chianti for over a thousand years at the Castello da Verrazzano in Greve in Chianti, Tuscany. Naturally, making a great product is not enough today. The buyer must be entertained and a show during a great meal where different wines are paired with different courses becomes a necessity. My friend Gino runs the presentation and wine tastings at the castello. We see him here entertaining  a group of tourists and potential buyers. I can attest from personal experience that the food is superb and the wines are of the highest quality and are made in the classical Chianti manner. It does make for a very entertaining lunch or dinner. One can also lodge in a building in the castello  estate in nice rooms at modest prices. The last photo shows Gino in a state of pure exstasy. He loves his work.

    La produzione dei  vini Chianti di alta qualita' risale a piu' di mille anni al castello da Verrazzano in Greve in Chianti, nella Toscana. Naturalmente, creare vini eccellenti non basta piu oggi. Il cliente deve essere intrattenuto con una sorte di show-presentazione  eseguita durante pasti dimostrativi in cui ogni portata e' abbinata ad un vino appropiato. Gino, un  caro amico mio, e' l'addetto a queste presentazioni. Lo vediamo mentre fa sollazzare un gruppo di clienti potenziali. Il mio parere, basato su esperienze personali, e' che il cibi sono squisiti e i vini sono di assoluta qualita' e prodotti  inpiena conformita' con le norme del consorzio Chianti Classico. Alla fin dei conti, sono dei pasti molto divertenti. Nell'ultima foto  Gino sembra che sia in uno stato di estasi. Ama molto il suo lavoro.

    Have a rosy week / Abbiate una rosea settimana