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the various and sundry creations of sylvus tarn
New camera
Or, you know how some people got covid dogs...?

I got a covid camera;)

No, really.

cherry blossoms. 1/2500s, f/2.8, ev -1.0, iso 100 180mm, sony ILCE-7C, tamron 70-180 Di III VXD, 12:10pm 11apr2021, cropped & scaled to 4000 pixels.

So, of course, the first thing I did was take flower pix, which I can do perfectly well on my lumix shirtpocket, or even my cell phone, but since I barely knew how to use the thing, I started with something that comes to me naturally. I will say that I was pretty impressed to be able to get remotely appealing flowers mid-day: not surprisingly the camera has much better dynamic range, and copes with harsh lighting much better because its sensor is so much bigger. I also discovered that I could get bokeh at a distance! Up till now the 50mm primes and the like I typically use tended to lose their bokeh, no matter how wide open (small the f-stop), when focusing at any kind of distance.

Dew. 1/320s, f/2.8, ev 0, iso 100, 180mm focal length; sony ILCE-7c, tamron 70-180 Di III VXD, 09:22 13apr 2021, cropped and scaled to 4000 pixels. [1]

Welp, that only took me a decade to figure out...It's kinda nice shooting closeups from three feet (1m) or more away, instead of shoving the lens right into the subject (something I can tell you that bugs and even flowers don't always appreciate, besides the shadow of the lens falling on your subject.)

Lawn flowers, possibly my favourite. 1/500s f/2.8, ev -0.3, iso 100, 180mm focal length; sony ILCE-7c, tamron 70-180 Di III VXD, 18:33 13apr2021, cropped & scaled to 4000 pixels

Which is not to say I'm unwilling to lay flat on the ground, of course:)

It's becoming increasingly clear that a longer macro, while bigger and heavier, would solve a lot of my lighting problems in the studio, much as I adored my 50mm zuiko prime, and while I ponder that, with a full-frame sized sensor, I can use this lens, which is...um... a 1:2? magnification? Certainly enough to photograph my beads for the website, anyway.

But how does this make my new purchase a covid camera?

White breasted nuthatch, jumping from branch to trunk 09:32 14apr2021. 1/800s, f/2.8, ev -1.0, iso 100 180mm, sony ILCE-7C, tamron 70-180 Di III VXD, cropped, sharpened & scaled to 512 pixels using gimp.

Sure, getting an interchangeable lens mirrorless[2] to replace my aging and-gonna-die-at-any-moment oly has been on the to-do list for at least three years, not least because I miss shooting with the lensbaby. But if ever there was a lens system designed for old, crappy cameras, lensbaby is it—they're specifically marketed as seeking imperfection, and while the lumix is adequate for shooting macro, it just didn't have the ...snap? IQ? something, anyway, of the zuiko. But it was adequate.

Nope, ultimately the reason I took the plunge was to get better bunny photos for my glass daughter Fran, cooped up in NYC. —I don't mean to minimize the pain and suffering a great many people have endured during the pandemic, and having lost two family members[3] within a week of each other since the beginning of this year, I do have some idea of how much it sucks to lose someone.

But those losses, if nothing else, really drove home how random and fleeting life can be; I simply decided I couldn't wait another five years for Nikon to maaaaaybe put out a decent macro[4] for their Z6: life's too short. Plus, this sony body is actually ever so slightly smaller than the E620, which, cool, I know from experience that it's a reasonably sized travel camera[5] .

Plus, like so many, our usual travel has been zilch, so the wizard and I have taken to hiking around local parks, and I wanted not only to capture neighborhood bunnies, but some of the birds and other wildlife, at higher and crisper resolutions than just a blurry blob. —I still have a ways to go, which is why the birdie is only up at my usual web size, because the camera focused on the tree trunk rather than the bird.[6]

But, of course, being painfully slow about purchasing anything new, the camera arrived the day after I got my first dose of the covid 19 vaccine.

[1]The ‘onion rings’ and ‘cateye’ shaped effects, (i.e. the light glittering through unfocused water drops) are evidently deprecated, but I like the way the effect shifts from one part of the picture to another.

[2]Can we please have an acronym no more aggravating than DSLR?

[3]Although not from covid

[4]And I was not about to buy F mount glass for a Z mount camera, no matter how good the FtZ converter is, cuz that just offends my sense of tidyness. Badly.

[5]Not so sure about the lens, tho’ even if it is supposedly “small and light” for a nearly 200mm telephoto.

[6]Because I still can't control my focus properly, yet.


[garden] [photography] [flora] [fauna] [2021]