Iconic Photos : A better photo blog than mine :)

I have been collecting various blog links for a while and decided to share my favorites. This one, Iconic Photos, uses historical images and a brief essay for each. Great stuff!

Here is one that I really liked on the Paris Peace Conference.

And, if you want more background, please read one of the best historical books on the subject: Margaret MacMillan’s Paris 1919: Six Months That Changed the World.

Yes. That’s what I was doing, studying art!

The Metropolitan Museum of Art (MoMA) is presenting an exhibit on old school video games such as Pac Man, Tetris, and Myst!

From the MoMA website: Are video games art? They sure are, but they are also design, and a design approach is what we chose for this new foray into this universe. The games are selected as outstanding examples of interaction design—a field that MoMA has already explored and collected extensively, and one of the most important and oft-discussed expressions of contemporary design creativity.

Rome trip

OMG! I am heading to Rome in a month or so and I just cannot wait! I have planned out my photo tour and, fingers crossed, I can get what I need in the limited time I am there. The architecture is what I am really looking forward to but am going to try my hat at some street photography. Yikes.

I am also looking forward to Tuscany but am now deliberating about whether or not I can fit Venice in, or just spend another day or two in Rome. I know, rough choices. I know that my camera is looking forward to the trip even more than I am!

Macro lens…. choices choices…

I love doing macro work but have only used a Sigma 70-200mm 4.0-5.6 as you can see from the lens test a few posts below. I have decided to get a dedicated macro lens and am now faced with a dilemma: do I choose the Panasonic/Leica 45mm or the Olympus 60mm? Both are 2.8. I absolutely love my Leica 25 1.4, pretty much attached to my GH2 all the time. It reminds me so much of my Pentax K1000 with its 50mm that I used to photograph with. Problem is that the Leica is $1000 as opposed to the $500 for the Olympus. And since I already have the adapter I will get auto focus with the Olympus but just no image stabilization.

UPDATE: Based on initial reviews, it appears that the Olympus is the way to go.

More to come!

Here are a couple from the Sigma:

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13 Assassins: Takashi Miishi

13assassinsI love Japanese samurai films. Old, new, it doesn’t matter and this is one of my favourite of all time Takashi Miishi films to boot. 13 Assassins (Jûsan-nin no shikaku) is the story of a group of samurai warriors who band together to kill an evil lord in the twilight years of the Tokugawa reign. And when I say evil, I mean like hack off a woman’s arms and legs to use her as a sexual plaything evil. The swordplay is exquisite as are the costumes and the characters. When I think of the evil lord, Naritsugu Matsudaira, I often think of Yukio Mishima and his romantic vision of the aristocratic heritage of Japan’s Tokugawa Shogunate system. The Lord, after using an entire family as targets in archery practice speaks of how the punishment of servants is the obligation of the nobility and necessary for the preservation of harmony. Unlike Mishima, however, Miike makes sure to inject heroes from all walks of life; indeed, one of the heroes of the tale is a disfigured peasant whose gross irreverence of samurai and their pretence stands in stark contrast to the duty bound nobility.

Samurai Spy is later tonight!

Photography Courses

One of the benefits of being at home this week has been the ability to take advantage of Adobe’s Creative Live and Lynda’s Photography courses. I’m finishing up John Greengo’s Fundamentals of Digital Photography. A great overview course that covers types of cameras, sensor size, light, and composition. A great course that was both instructive and good to salve some of my creative juices since I’m stuck here at home. This, plus Ben Long’s Photography: Composition series at Lynda.com, has kept me busy the last few sleepless nights. I did try to do some macro work here but, alas, even that tuckered me out. Tough to be creative with a sinus headache.

I am still in the decision mode as to whether or not to upgrade my GH2. I’m not sure yet as to the upgrade to the GH3 (Choice 1), the new Nikon D7100 (Choice 2), or going straight to full frame with the D600 (Choice 3). Choice 4 is to stick with my GH2.

I’m still at sticking with my GH2 since I haven’t any good reason, yet, to update my equipment…. although my upcoming trip to Rome is beginning to alter my decision!

photos, philosophy, films, books, history, that kind of stuff…