Posted by: Andrew Skelton | 31/03/2012

Little In The Way Of Sunshine*

Garden Flowers, originally uploaded by

So sang the inimitable Half Man Half Biscuit on their “all killer, no filler” album CSI:Ambleside and it certainly feels that way today. I can’t say it’s not expected, with glorious sunshine and high temperatures warming the UK all week, it was inevitable that the grey skies and cold temperatures would return as we approach the Easter Holidays. Typical!

I’ve sorted through all today’s football photos already, and it’s only mid-afternoon on the Saturday, and something has become apparent. Despite the weather being in the doldrums, I managed to take well over 12Gb though obviously not all these are “keepers” (and I don’t mean the Goal type) with some out of focus (camera fault… obviously!), badly timed where someone is obscuring play (camera fault… obviously!) or simply repeats of the same photo when using rapid fire (the camera can take 10 frames per second (I hate to think how many duplicate photos I’d get with the mighty Canon 1DX which can take as many as 14 frames per second – in fact it would take me longer to pare down the number of images to provide to the football club (plus I don’t like the size of the 1DX.. the 1D4 is just about perfect (well, for me anyway))) I’ve still have nearly 6Gb to transfer across the Head Coach. This isn’t normally a problem but I have a batch from two weeks ago that is already on the memory stick and it’s touch and go whether they’ll all fit on… as Roy Schieder said, “We’re going to need a bigger memory stick” (well, sort of)

It would appear I’ve been a little too cavalier when changes lenses on my 1D4, despite of or possibly because of my recent blog where I stated I have very little issues with dust on the sensor these days due to technology within the camera to shake loose any granules that find their way into the camera. Whilst I can live with, and get round the issues of artifacts in photographs, having taken some video of the kids football matches today, it’s not so easy to remove it from the movies themselves… well, not with the software I currently have to process (yes, I did say the “P” word, of course I’m not referring to exposure compensation etc. but cutting the scenes up to and patching them together to make for a better finished product). I’m not going to waste much time researching software packages (I know the two I would look at using anyway) – it’s much easier, and quicker to simply clean the sensor (and I do have the equipment for that!).

One other thing that became apparent when taking the video, as Roy Schieder would say “You’re going to need a steadier hand” (well, sort of) – I was using the Canon 5D mark II with a 50mm lens (Sigma f1.4) and without image stabilisation the resultant film won’t find its way on to Sky Sports any time soon. As with film, there’s a whole industry now producing 3rd party accessories for new dSLRs to convert them to fully functioning Hi-Def movie cameras – in fact I tried on rig at Focus-On-Imaging. I could quite easily get hooked on that side of image production, but for the moment I have a quick and simple remedy for the camera shake issue, I’ll take my monopod along next time.

* And here’s the track for your delectation: Little In The Way Of Sunshine


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