Olympus E-30 DSLR

Welcome To The Equipment Page . . .

I have used so many cameras over the years that I can hardly remember all of them. I know that every one I ever held or used I regarded as a work of art. And, for the most part, they were. Finely machined, carefully designed and built, meticulously maintained by their owners. Works of Art, all.

My favorite cameras have always been single lens reflex cameras. I have been priviledged to own many, and I still do. I just don't use them anymore.

My favorite SLRs were the medium format cameras such as Hasselblads® and Mamiyas®. I've owned several of each make over the years and each had its purpose. The Hasselblads® were used professionally as they could be relied upon to keep on working no matter what (but, I always had an extra one on hand just in case.)  

I've also used view cameras extensively. For those who may not know, a view camera is the sort of old fashioned type where the photographer puts a dark cloth over his head and views the image upside-down and reversed from left to right. 

They are used in both commercial photography, particularly, product and catalog work, and in art photography as they give the photographer the most control over the final image. The ones I've used had film/negative sizes from 2¼X3¼ inches, to 4X5 inches, to 8X10 inches. Some were a joy to use and others were an effort of will. But they all did the job they were intended for: to take superb photographs.

Now, I am not using any film camera at all. I bought a digital camera around 2001 to take photos of object I wanted to auction off on eBay®. My first one was an Olympus C3000Z®. It was a pretty good camera (for the time) but it had some serious drawbacks. The lens exhibited pronounced color fringing, particularly, around objects of high contrast. I still have it but I don't use it. Much!

I have now purchased an Olympus E-30® DSLR (digital single lens reflex) which I bought with an Olympus 14-54mm Zuiko f2.8-3.5 II® lens. It is an amazing camera with features far beyond any other camera in its price range. The lens is incredibly sharp and remarkably free of distortion. At wide angle setting it does not exhibit any serious edge fall-off as most others do. It is a joy to use. 

I have also purchased two new lenses: the Olympus 9-18mm Zuiko f4-5.6®, and the Olympus 35mm Zuiko f3.5 Macro®. Both are proving to be fine lenses for my purposes.

As far as techniques are concerned, I am primarily concentrating on learning, using, and mastering all of the features of the new camera. When I am sufficiently able to use the camera without searching for each feature, then, I expect that it will help me to produce some extrordinary work using a variety of techniques.

One technique that I am especially intrigued with is called HDR Photography. HDR stands for High Dynamic Range. It is not really new in the world of photography as film photographers have been practicing a wide range of techniques whose aim was always to increase the dynamic range of the materials they used. I, too, have used such techniques in my years of using film technology.

The photographic master, Ansel Adams, codified and practiced the Zone System in his work and has been an inspiration to generations of photographers since. 

Digital HDR Photography, however, extends the range of the materials - in this case the digital image and the computer monitor or a digital photographic paper - so far as to achieve an 'other worldly' impression!

These techniques are much more approachable in the digital world than in the film world. Software exists now which makes the production of an HDR image relatively easy. Still, of course, one has to learn best how to apply this technology in order to both master it and to make pleasing images. I am extremely excited about the possibilities of applying these methods to my own work.

The new E-30 has one important capability which will help to make this much more easily available to me. Most important to me, is that with this new camera, I can shoot a series of exposure-compensated photos having a total range of 5 EVs in less than 1 second. 

This makes HDR photography possible using a much greater range of subject matter than previously accessible due to the rapid capture aspect of shooting subjects which are not rigidly stationary.  

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About the photographs:

When you look at the Gallery, you will see some of my older Black and White photographs taken in New Mexico between 1981 and 1985, and in Death Valley during the same time.

All were shot using film technology and were printed conventionally as silver-gelatin prints. The digital reproductions are straight digital photographs of the original B&W prints.

Many were taken with a 4X5 inch Toyo Field® camera or a Horseman VHR Technical® (2 ¼X3 ¼'') camera. The Death Valley photographs were taken using a Mamiya® 645 roll-film SLR (one of my favorite cameras of all time.) 

While in northern New Mexico, I lived in a 100 year old adobe which was once a dance-hall and saloon. I put together a makeshift darkroom and, when the water wasn't frozen, I was able to process film and make prints. It was wonderful living in New Mexico as it is a land that literally gives itself to artists and photographers. 

The photographs of the cemetery were  the first digital photos I have taken. I stumbled across this old graveyard while living in Geyserville, CA on my father's retirement ranch that I had helped him acquire in 1975. I believe that  the graves were the original white settlers to the area as many of them were from the 1860's. Of course, the Pomo bands of Native American people lived in the area long before the European-Americans ever came to the west.

The remainder of the works are also original digital photographs. I invite you to visit the gallery now and in the future to discover if my technique is any match for my inspiration.

The Photo Gallery . . . 

Clicking on a photograph (or pressing  the letter "Z") will bring up a larger print. Clicking on the image again (or pressing "Z") will take you back to the gallery.

To return to these pages, click on the upper-right "X" icon in the Gallery tab to close the tab and return here.

You can also  sign into my guest book on the contact page where you don't have to leave your email address if you don't want to. Or, send me an email if you choose. Thank you again for taking the time to visit these pages and the Gallery. I hope it was an enjoyable visit.

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