Sunday, October 05, 2008

Hockey & Stuff

We moved my furniture yesterday, as I previously posted. We stopped to watch Ryan (my grandson) playing hockey and I brought the camera and the 70-200, planning to try the predictive focus tracking function of the D300. Good test! Hockey is TOUGH to photograph. I'm guessing for every photo in the newspaper there's a couple of hundred rejects -- and that's what motor drives and fast frame repeats are for.

It's not my style -- so I really didn't get into it. The most I shot was a 3-shot burst, but I did get a couple of useable images. Here's one:

Pretty sharp. I tracked this kid all the way from the blue line. Even at ISO 1600, I only got 1/160 sec at f/5.6 (depth of field at f/2.8 would have been too shallow). There are a few more images in my October gallery.

I also took a few pictures of my granddaughter running around. I have to study more about the facial recognition and predictive focusing functions, I'm not sure I got it right. Anyway, this shot was under arc lamp lighting and I let the camera choose the white balance. It was a touch too yellow, so I colour corrected it a bit. Kind of a good feel to the shot, though.

The only other image I took yesterday was of my odometer on the bike, showing "55555" km. I had to take it: my friend Styles obsesses about the number "555", so this shot was for him. I'm impressed with the crisp sharpness of the D300, something that the 6Mp D70 seemed to lack a bit. You had to work at it with that camera. The D300 just does it.

I spent the best part of the day today addressing computer issues. Seems my mouse didn't want to do its thing when I reinstalled my desktop in this location, so I replaced it and the keyboard at the sanme time -- the old keyboard had worn out lettering, so it's a good thing I can touch type! This one seems better. The Microsoft mouse I bought has a neat "magnify" function which is tied into the little sub-button on the right side. Makes it easier to see small type with these old eyes! It's a Microsoft Wireless Laser Mouse 5000, by the way. $60 for a wireless mouse & keyboard. Not bad, they've come down a lot. I had to disable the left sub-button because I kept pressing it by mistake. The trials and tribulations of being left handed...

I had to get an external wireless thingy for the desktop since I don't have a wired internet connection here. The one I bought was $20 at Staples and looks like a typical little USB key. Took a bit of work to get it going. It's not as sensitive as the laptop receiver -- the laptop says 99% signal and the new thing only about 52%, and they're side by side right now.

I still have some technical stuff to sort out. I don't have a TV yet (the TV card for the laptop doesn't work well enough to keep it so I brought it back), and my cellphone reception sucks here so I'll have to look at those two items tomorrow. Maybe I can get some photos of the new place by then.

The camera club meeting tomorrow should be interesting: guest speaker is Richard Lautens from the Toronto Star. I saw him at the Digital Imaging Show and he was pretty good -- he had a lot of tips for photojournalists. You can learn a lot from guys like him.

See Y'all!