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Showing posts from August, 2020

More Macro, Less Money

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Macro photography is a fascinating subject but cost wise the equipment needed can be eye watering, but it doesn't need to be.  There are several options to produce a macro image.

A dedicated macro lensAdding extension tubes to decrease the minimum focusing distance and increase magnification.Using close up filters
MACRO LENSES
Fujiflm make two lenses that are labelled as 'macro'.  

The first is the XF60mm f2.4R, one of the three original X series prime lenses launched in 2013 and the newer XF80mm f2.8R LM OIS WR macro.  The 60mm is not a true macro lens as it doesn't reproduced images at a ratio of 1:1, it is a 1:2 (half size) lens, where as the 80mm is a true 1:1 macro lens.

I bought a 60mm in 2013 alongside the 18mm f2, 35mm f1.4 and 14mm f2.8 primes when I bought the X-Pro1.  It was an excellent short telephoto lens.  It was a bit slow in the auto focus department but optically it was excellent, as was the build quality.  I sold it in 2015 because I wasn't using it m…

Rode Wireless Go for the Fujifilm X-T4

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One of the things I learned very quickly when using video is the need for clear audio. It doesn't matter how good the video looks, if the audio is poor, then the video is not going to be well received.

Over the years I have invested in good, portable microphones even invested in a radio mic system.  This worked really well but when working in a motorsport environment, a broad range of radio frequencies are used for various uses and radio microphone frequencies are strictly controlled.  in some countries you also need to buy a licence, which can cost hundreds of pounds, so I quickly reverted back to wired microphones.



This brought its own problems as when interviewing drivers the surrounding environment can be noisy, so you need to get the microphone as close as possible.  Of course, the extra added complication in the last few months means the interviewer has to stand at least 1.5 metres, which means wires trailing across the floor, which isn't good.



In March I spotted that Rode …

Shooting Driver Interviews with the Fujifilm X-T4

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Over last weekend I shot several video interviews with drivers during the European Le Mans Series (ELMS) and Michelin Le Mans Cup (MLMC) using a new Fujifilm X-T4 video rig for the first time.

I have spent the last few months investing in the new X-T4 and associated gear with a view of using it primarily for video at the ELMS and MLMC events.  To this end I bought a second X-T4 last week and a Smallrig cage so I can attach a 5 inch Freeworld LCD screen and microphones easily.

Here is an interview we shot with Algarve Pro Racing's Gaby Aubry who was interviewed in French by ELMS Communications Manager Sophie Liger.



As you can see in the image at the top of the page, this interview was conducted in the paddock with the X-T4 video rig attached to 3 Legged Thing 'Jay' Carbon Fibre video tripod.  The lens used was the superb XF16-55mm f2.8, which was fitted with a Haida M10 filter holder with a 3 stop ND filter fitted to allow a wider aperture to be used in the bright sunlight.

The…

Long Exposure Landscapes Workshop at Seacliff

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Yesterday I hosted another MacLean Photographic 'Long Exposure Landscapes' workshop at Seacliff beach, a location I tend to take most of my guests to because of the immense variety of images available in a relatively small location.


Located a couple of miles east of North Berwick, Seacliff features a small sandy beach looking out towards Bass Rock one mile out in the Firth of Forth.  At this time of year the small island is covered in gannets as up to 150,000 birds call this part of Scotland home from March until October.  We were treated to some fantastic diving displays as the birds fished just off the beach for most of the day.


On the headland looking west is the ruins of Tantallon Castle, which is still an imposing sight high on the cliffs across the bay.  Just off the beach is the small working harbour, which is reportedly Scotland's smallest harbour.

On the other side of the bay is St Baldred's Cross, which is the outer marker that indicates to shipping where th…