I recently picked up a new lens that I did a bit of research on. I'm not into gear fanboi obsessing. I know from experience in any craft or art technique derived from much practice and experimentation is far more important than any piece of equipment. My goal in wanting and obtaining this lens was to give me a good optical tool that would allow me to do good sharp street photography (with auto focus) where often I need to respond very quickly, and also be able to do nice Depth of Field for selected still life shots(where I can use manual focus to dial in the desired dreamy bokeh). I chose a Pentax DA 40 2.8 pancake lens which is extremely small and light-truly an ideal walk around lens.
I bought this second hand here from a local EBay-type site. In fact EBay is one of the partners behind it. The site is a bit more confusing than EBay in that it has many more options for payment and delivery, and oddly enough(PayPal is an EBay company) it doesn't offer PayPal payment option. That was the one point that really had me a little concerned making a purchase from an unknown seller. PayPal offers a return option and will get involved if you buy an item that has been misrepresented or is problematic. Well I fond a really good price but the seller's initial terms were cash up front and then item would be sent. I clicked buy and then afterwards asked seller if he'd be willing to accept a COD via 7-11 store option. The seller was amenable and ended up canceling out the first deal and making a new one that fit my request which I agreed to. His deal terms mentioned condition of lens was new, complete packing materials and documents were in tact, etc. After a couple of days I received notification that the lens had arrived at the store near me and I went and got it. I couldn't believe how clean and new looking the lens and related materials were. The seller still e-mailed me and reminded me if I wasn't happy within one week I could return it.
The bottom line-I got an excellent lens from an honest seller for a very attractive price. It's a great feeling when you take a chance and a stranger is both honest and honorable...
JONI MITCHELL - AMELIA
I'm still enjoying my "slow photo" experiments(becoming a norm actually). I'm hoping I'll adhere to the slower, waiting for the shot to compose itself approach with my newly acquired automatic lens(I've been using primarily manual prime lenses). Here I was taking my time walking around a local food fair and down the green parkway to the art museum. This shot was the last of the day actually on the way back. I believe the little boys mother had just walked past me ahead of him. I remember my mom doing that because sometimes they're tired and wanting to get home even though their little sons want more play time in...
Going to have to go with one of my favorite pieces of music with some musical greats performing it: Dave Holland Quartet - Conference of the Birds
Today I watched a great interview with Garry Winogrand, a brilliant and unpretentious photographer that just truly loved taking pictures. The thing I appreciated the most was his joy in taking the pictures and how he didn't seek to over-analyze or intellectualize what he was doing. He also didn't place to much concern on technology or gear-that being said he did use state of the art equipment for his day-Leica range finder cameras, but that is understandable considering he was a professional. The key point is he didn't care about how a photograph came to be as much as how the photograph impacted him.
Wilco - Kamera
There was a long period of time that I would have identified myself as a street photographer. There is nothing wrong with that classification or tag and do love that theme. The more I've gotten into photography the more I want to shoot anything that presents itself to me as a challenge to capture well and I feel will create an interesting and hopefully engaging image.
When I go out on my walk for photo subjects I am always looking at everything and everywhere for interesting light, line and shadow.
I do much work in black and white but also love color when the colors are right for me. That is a very hard thing to explain but suffice it to say that colors tend to complicate the viewing of an image and often clash. That is why I do so much black and white conversion. This is one of my more successful color orchid shots to date. Hope you like it as well.
White Stripes - Blue Orchid