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17mm f4L tilt shift lens Photography Blog

A really BIG Photographic Canvas print!

March 8th, 2011
4m canvas print laid out at Monk Art Photography Gallery
Freshly arrived…

I have mentioned this 4m Photographic canvas image a few times in previous posts, but i wanted it to be up on the wall before putting it on the blog,  it seemed only fair that the client should see it first, especially since it has been so long in the making.

Nigel Stretching the 4m canvas onto the custom made frame
Into it… a slightly dreaded job

I was pretty excited when i got an order for a 4m image, a vertical one at that, i’d never printed anything so big and i was very keen to try it.  I was confident the image would would print up well, it was shot on a large format panoramic camera, a Fuji GX 617 on a 6 x 17 cm piece of transparency film (Fuji Velvia), like most of the images in my gallery.  It was then scanned at 3200 dpi and 16 bit on an Imacon 848 scanner to over 900Mb, so there was tons of fine detail and information to work with.  The finished layered file came in at 2.9Gb… Thats a lot of hard drive space for one image.

My printer is an Epson 9900, which is 111cm wide (44″), so i can print an image of this format (3:1 ratio) to about 3m long… not big enough for this one.  So i called my friend Paul Parin from Studio Red Dust, who has an Epson 11880, the big brother to my printer.  The Epson 11880 can print to 152cm wide (60″) and with the right software and the right person driving it, for as long an image as you could want.  Paul is very proffesional and really knows how to drive his printer, so the results were spectacular.

The 4m canvas photographic image by Adam Monk takes shape
Thats pretty big…

The timber for the stretcher frame had to be custom made, and Nigel from Bitches Brew Picture Framers, who shares the gallery space with me, had  a few sleepless nights worrying about stretching this monster before clearing a space on the gallery floor and tackling the job.

Hanging the 4m canvas image in its final spot
Rob carefully measuring

My delivery van has a maximum  length of 3m it can  fit in the cargo area, so last Saturday i hired a truck and delivered this 4m long image to its new home, where Rob, from Master Art Display and myself put it into its final location.

The 4m vertical photographic image on the wall at last
The final result.

Each of these images of the stretching and hanging of the 4m photographic canvas print were taken on the Canon 5D Mk II with the 17mm f4L tilt shift lens to keep the perspective and gain some unusual focal planes (click on the images for a closer look).  The last image was not taken by me, since i am in the shot, but by Rob the Picture hanging expert, who also happens to be pretty handy with a camera.

Redgate Beach

January 5th, 2011

Finally i got some time to work up that image from Redgate Beach, Margaret River, though actually its not the same image that i posted a few months back, its a differant series a few minutes earlier, the other one i may work on some more tomorrow.

Redgate Beach in the Margaret River wine region of Western Australia

Clearing Rain, Redgate Beach, Margaret River

I  love the water movement across the foreground of this image, as the water from the previous wave rushes back out from the left to the right.

This image is 6 pairs of vertical exposures stitched and then manually HDR blended to get the light in the foreground, its shot on the Canon 5DMk II with the 17mm f4L tilt shift lens.   Its still a work in progress, but i think its coming up nicely, i may put this one up in the gallery to see what the response is.

Happy New Year by the way, they seem to come up more and more often the older i get!

Redgate Beach turns it on

November 16th, 2010

I just had a few days camping around Margaret River, something i haven’t done for ages.  It really is a beautiful place and a very odd site to try and build a coal mine…

The first couple of days were a bit rainy and grey, which is the perfect weather for stuff like this…

Twisted tree at Contos Beach, Margaret River region of Western Australia

Weathered Wood

Shot on the 5D Mk II with that really cool 17mm f4L tilt shift lens i keep writing about.  Seems its almost permanently glued to the camera these days, in fact most times i seem to leave the rest of my camera gear at home or in the car (heavily locked and secured of course).  I just love the texture of the weathered wood in this shot, it was really  an experiment to see just how much depth i could get with the lens tilt and an extremely close subject, and this old gnarly tree was a great subject.  By tilting the lens so the focal plane was parallel with the tree trunk i was able to keep all of it pin sharp while dropping out the background very nicely, its almost like having a field camera again, but not as big or clumsy.

By Friday afternoon the weather started to clear and i found myself down at Redgate beach again, where the sunset was just amazing!

Redgate beach Sunset as the storm clears, Margaret River region of Western Australia

Clearing sky at sunset, Redgate Beach

I had brought a very heavy bag with all my Canon gear and the 6×17 down with me (and mostly left it in the car), and although my brain told me i should take out the 6×17 and use that… stitching not being so great for beaches and moving waves… i just couldn’t bring myself to do it.  Really i needed 2 tripods set up next to each other so i could shoot with both at once, oh yeah, and an assistant to carry all this gear, and a second assistant to set it all up…  Working on these lovely clean digital files has really spoiled me, its hard to go back to spending hours dusting huge scans, removing fingerprints and chemical smears that turn into whole continents when enlarged to 100%… maybe i need an assistant for that too…

This image is of course shot with the canon 5D Mk II and the  17mm f4L tilt shift lens… its actually one image of a 7 or 8 image stitch, which i haven’t done yet.  i’ll play around in the coming days and see if i can get it to work, stay tuned.

A question of Pixels

October 1st, 2010

All  the images on my site are shot on large format film, except one… can you pick it?   I have many thousands of negatives of all formats from 5″x4″ to 35mm in folders all over the place… so much for organised security!

I’ve had a lot of fun with film, and used more than my fair share of it over the years.  Time i moved on, so,  about 8 months ago  i bought my first real digital camera, a Canon 5D Mk II  and  i am loving it.  I recently took it with me to Greece and i just had a ball, shooting HDR images (manually blended with layers) and stitched Panos with this awesome  pano head from Really Right Stuff that i picked up a while back.  This camera is not just my first real digital, its my first camera with auto focus!  I’ve been sitting on the fence for quite a while it seems.

The last 35mm gear i had was a Leica RE with a whole bag of beautiful prime lenses, all manual focus and full manual exposure.  I think the camera had some auto exposure functions on it, but i never used them, so i have no idea if they worked or not.  I just sold this camera recently, it’s helping pay for the new setup.

I remember 12 years ago when i worked for Fremantle Black & White (Black & White lab here in Freo), and using one of the first serious professional digital cameras in the studio, it was about 1.5 mega pixels and hugely expensive.  It had a viewing screen the size of a postage stamp and was awfully slow, but even then it was clearly the way forward, though it had a long way to go.

South Beach sunset in Fremantle Western Australia

Check out the depth of field

A couple of days ago i picked up the latest addition for the Canon 5D Mk II kit, a 17mm f4L Tilt Shift lens. its a bit more like what i’m used to, being a prime lens with manual focus.  Although it’s really designed for architectural style work, the tilt and shift capabilities make it ideal for landscape due to the almost infinite depth of field possible.  I took it down to South Beach yesterday after work and had a bit of a play around, takes a bit of getting used to, but i think its going to be awesome for stitching pano images.

I think it’ll still be a while before i replace the 6 x 17 film camera, but not because i think it’s better than digital, rather, i can’t yet afford the camera that can replace it.  Anybody want to lend me $50,000?

Sunset at South Beach in Fremantle Western Australia

Both these images shot at f5.6

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