Fun day at the show

Today I talked at the Photo Network Expo show in Toronto (at the old Maple Leaf Gardens): “Conquering Flash”, a one hour crash flash course. Tomorrow, I am on again with the same subject at 3:30pm, so if you did not make it today, come tomorrow!

It was also a great opportunity for me to network and to play with gear, since gear is important. As you know I am considering adding, or switching to, a Nikon D4.

Service and support can be important too, and Nikon’s pro program is free for pros. The Nikon folks have been extremely helpful in my exploration of them and their equipment. Here’s Nikon’s Jim Eyre, who was instrumental in arranging to lend me the two D4 bodies and lenses and flash:

While the D4, like every camera, has a few drawbacks (the menu system is old; I cannot turn vertical shots a quarter turn so they fill the LCD display when reviewing “only on the camera”, etc), they are minor, and this camera is a true delight to work with. The “click” is just wonderful; it’s light; it holds very well – and ergonomics are important. It is very tunable, like all Nikon bodies; one feature I particularly like is that I can rename my own custom modes. I never use these modes on the Canon bodies, since I cannot rename them and hence, I forget what they are for.

The Nikon lenses have come a long way too: they are now, well, sweet. Progress is good, isn;t it?

Here’s Chris Ogonek, left, who like me used to teach at Henry’s School of Imaging, evidently in awe of his lenses, one of which, the super-sweet 14-24mm f/2.8, is being tried here by my colleague Kristof:

Canon, of course, has cool gear too. Here’s the 300mm f/2.8 IS in action:

And a few more:

That’s 6400 ISO, f/2.8, with the 300mm f/2.8L IS II USM, and it’s like a studio shot – the lady’s hair, which I was aiming at, is great, with every strand sharp. (View at full size!)

The Fuji X100 is now the X100s: many improvements, but manual focus using superimposed squares (like a Leica) in particular is excellent. Damn, my X100 is outdated now. I liked the X100s as much as the superb Leicas, which were also on display.

My talk is about flash, of course. Including off-camera flash, like in this hand-held shot of myself I did in about ten seconds on stage:

More fun tomorrow: and for me, more networking and a report on what’s great.

For you, the same, and lots of speakers, including Storey Wilkins and David Williams; it is very much worth coming, even on a Sunday when perhaps you would rather sleep. Get up, come see the expo, an expo downtown for once, and learn from the great collection of NSI (Niagara School of Imaging) speakers!


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