Pro Tip:We recommend that you communicate with the person that you’re photographing first to get insight as to what they want. Some headshots are more corporate oriented while others are for comp cards, actor profiles, and dating websites.
All the technical mavens that have nothing more to do than critique other folks’ photos and not go out creating great work themselves will tell you not to backlight an image. But we’re going to tell you something different–backlight as much as you want. But in the end, create a captivating photo. And though even we may tell you that it’s best to create your own light (and in many situations it really is) we don’t believe in limiting yourself just because you might not have a flash. So to create a better portrait in natural light, you can either wait for the golden/blue hour and give yourself maybe around 15 minutes or so of shooting time or you can go shooting at any time of the day–just as long as you can make the light do what you want it to.
And for that, backlighting is a very viable option.
It was bound to happen, but we never thought that it take this long for it to happen. Petapixel by the way of Nikon Rumors is stating that US law firm Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein is trying to gather complaints for a possible class action law suit against Nikon for issues had with the D600–the company’s entry level full frame DSLR. While some report that Nikon had replaced the shutter for them with better results, others state that it is still problematic for them. To recap, the D600 had a sensor problem where due to a faulty shutter dust and oil would gather and therefore also appear in photos.
Nikon’s major response to the issue was replacing the camera with the D610. And even went as far as replacing some D600 cameras with the new D610. Because of this, we’re not sure how far the lawsuit may go.
But if you’re a D600 owner, you may want to contact Nikon about fixing the issue first for you.
It’s been a while since Canon released the G1 X camera, and the company is announcing an update in the form of the G1 X Mk II today for CP+. At the heart of the camera is a new 1.5″ 12.8MP CMOS sensor, a DIGIC 6 processor, ISO range of 100-12,800, a new 9 aperture blade f2-f3.9 lens with an equivalent zoom range of 24-120mm, 31 AF points, and a 3 inch tilting LCD. Canon also has a brand new external EVF that mounts into the hot shoe for the camera.
The new G1 X Mk II also boasts WiFi connectivity, NFC, and a $799.99 price tag when it drops in April. For what it’s worth, the Ricoh GR is still cheaper and has an APS-C sized sensor.
Sigma is updating their point and shoot line with what they’re called their dp Quatro series. The new cameras were apparently redesigned to incorporate a new sensor, body, lens and processor. Like their predecessors there will be three cameras: the DP1, DP2, and DP3. All of them will have f2.8 lenses that equate to 28mm, 45mm and 75mm accordingly. When we tested the DP3, we were blown away by the quality that the lens and sensor combo gave us though at first being a tad hesitant about the camera.
Sigma has chosen to stick with the Foveon sensor and in many aspects we see why. The sensors are capable of delivering tons of detail and some of the best colors that we’ve seen in tests while also giving very film-like black and white results in the high ISO arena. They surely can’t stand up to conventional CMOS and X Trans sensors in the high ISO realm, but they’re still quite excellent when used correctly.
The new cameras feature a 39MP Foveon sensor (APS-C 1.5x crop size). The new sensor is called the X3 Quatro and Sigma is saying that it offers 30% higher resolution, faster data processing and lower power needs. The key feature in the new design is that the top layer (a blue layer) is broken into four quadrants with the green and red layers underneath being a single piece.
Hopefully, Adobe Lightroom support will come soon. Specs are more photos are after the jump. Pricing and availability will be announced at a later time.
Here’s an interesting new patent from Sony, one that shows a sensor design that makes use of a nano-carbon layer on the sensor that acts much like an on-sensor shutter. According to the patent description over at Egami, the light wavelength transmission range of the nano-carbon layer can be changed by applying a current, so in theory what it should do is to only transmit light when a certain current is applied, and in other cases block the light, much like a mechanical shutter would do.
There are a couple uncertainties about this patent, though. First of all, the patent description mentions that the nano layer only covers one pixel out of each RGGB / RRGB /RGBW array (it seems Sony is considering various color filter layouts,) so we’re not entirely sure how light to the remaining pixels would be blocked, unless the sensor also incorporates an electronic shutter much like the Pansonic Lumix GM1 does.
Then, Image Sensors World, who reported on this patent a couple days ago, mentions that apparently the transmission range that can be changed only applies to the infrared band, which would render the patent useless for regular photographic sensors. However, we don’t have any physicists or IC designer in the Phoblographer team, so we can’t say with certainty what this means for practical implementation.
In any case, the idea itself is fascinating, and if such a nano-carbon layer could be made that can be toggled to block all visible light upon applying a current, this might lead to the ultimate death of the mechanical shutter some time in the future.
Not everyone has the money to be able to buy new cameras every year or two years. And many of us are also quite happy with the cameras that we have. But as cameras get older, there are a couple of tricks that you can do to get the most out of them.