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gravity

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Posts posted by gravity


  1. any materials that the copyright has expired can also be put on a kindle for free. if you order it from amazon, they typically charge $.99 cents for public domain material because they deliver it over a wireless network. But if you plug your kindle into a computer you can put public domain materials on it. I often retrieve free, non-copyrighted books from The Guttenberg Project over the web and put them on my Kindle free of charge


  2. My gut reaction is that it is stealing. I don't think it would be covered by fair use, and I think if the pictures are copyrighted then she is breaking the law. But, truthfully, I don't know much about fair use. I am sure others here do and can give you a more informed legal opinion,


  3. I am not familiar with the Ikelite setup, but almost anything that is stuck that can be unscrewed can be loosened by gently tapping on the outside near the threads for a long period of time. Tap gently and take your time. I had a filter stuck on a lens one time that took me 30 minutes of tapping to loosen.


  4. Have not stayed at those resorts, but I have stayed at El Dorado Resort a few times. It has a pool and spa that is good for non-divers, along with a nice house reef and walkable/swim-able to the Pura Vida house reef. The local dive guides at El Dorado are awesome if you can get private guiding, but when the resort is busy you get put in groups. Next time I go I might try Bahura resort. It seems to me that it has the nicest property in the area, an onsite dive shop, and good house reef, but it doesn't have the 'diver resort' reputation of the others. Perhaps there is a good reason for that, but I will at least try to find out.


  5. I nearly always use AI Servo (or APS-C as it is called on my D300). In your post you said you drifted off target before pressing the shutter. I don't think using Single will help that. Single will help if your lens is continually changing its focus from one object to another (focus hunting). I find I don't have a problem with hunting if I use a focus light and single area focus. Camera movement due to breathing, currents, surge, or other factors are always an issue with Macro. For the smallest subjects, I make the final focus adjustments by way of physically moving myself inches closer or further from the subject and anticipating precisely when it will be in focus. Here is an example when I needed to physically move and anticipate the shutter release because I couldn't stay exactly still for long enough to stay focused on the narrow DOF.

     

    3601355952_efe181f6b8_o.jpg

     

     

    I also think you will find that F8 has plenty of DOF if you are at least a few feet away from your subject. For macro work, you will need smaller apertures (eg F16-F36).

     

    The first several dives being new to a U/W DSLR you are bound to have some of focus shots (I had a ton of them), take your time and practice and you will figure it out soon enough.


  6. If you aren't concerned about the flu virus, now might be a good time to support the cozumel economy, and they probably really need it. You will probably also be able to find better then normal deals. If you are concerned about restaurants, stay at a place that has a reputation for good food. I stayed at Scuba Club Cozumel a few years back, and the food was certainly good enough to eat there every meal if there aren't other options. It might not be the best food in Mexico, but you certainly won't starve either.


  7. Thanks Steve,

     

    The whaleshark pics are actually from in the Philippines where I am now, not Komodo. My flickr photostream is a little bit ahead of my completed sets.

     

    You are correct that I varied the WB settings from picture to picture. On most I was setting for an 'accurate' foreground, often at the expense of the water color. I also, don't know if that is the 'correct' choice; but it is what i went for. Since uploading those I have been playing around with Hue/Saturation/Luminance and camera calibration settings to try to get the best of both. Still a work in progress. I just got Lightroom a few weeks ago and I am still figuring it out.


  8. Hi all,

    My wife and i did a week in Komodo a month ago. Apart from a handful of dives, it was my first experience with my tokina 10-17 fisheye. As I mentioned in a Lembeh gallery I posted earlier, this is my first trip with a DSLR. In Lembeh I got a lot of macro practice. This was my chance to try some wideangle. At different times, I experimented both with strobes and magic filters. I found wide angle composition much more challenging then macro, particularly when shooting reefscapes. I think I got some decent photos, but I would love to hear from anyone that has a critique or advice.

     

    Here is the gallery:

     

    Komodo set on flickr.com

     

    Thanks,


  9. Hi all,

    I am currently staying for a few weeks on the island of Negros in the PI doing some diving and photos. A few days ago I got this shot of a turtle and my wife. I know turtle shots are a dime a dozen in some parts of the world, but I think this is a keeper. I have a bunch of similars along with it. I would appreciate your feedback on what everyone thinks of it and ability to improve it, especially in water improvements. I want to learn to do the best i can before photoshop. This was taken with a d300 and tokina fe at 10mm. Thanks,

     

    3497162058_697d956eab_o.jpg


  10. I would recommend always using continuous-servo. By default this puts the camera in shutter priority. The default setting for single-servo is for the camera not to fire if it thinks it isn't in focus. This can cause a problem if it is focusing on what you want it focused on, but the camera doesn't think it is what is should be focused on. A few solutions, but the simplest is to use AFS-C.

     

    For the area on my d300, I am not sure of the terminology, but I use the setting the covers the entire focus area (area focus) for wide angle shooting and it seems to work pretty well. For macro shooting I usually use Dynamic area and for very small objects sometimes go all the way down to single area. Some others may have different opinions, but I feel those settings work for me.


  11. Thanks everyone who looked or commented for the encouragement. I particularly appreciate feedback, both positive and constructive. I am diving everyday for the next three weeks, so I will have plenty of chances to experiment with feedback. I also have a komodo set that i am putting on flickr. i haven't linked to it yet because it isn't quite finished, but it is up there and open to the public as a work in progress if anyone wants to take a look.

     

    Wus, I use 2x ikelite 160s. I primarily use the f-stop to control exposure when shooting macro. Sometimes adjust strobe power also. the flat colors might be me learning how to shoot a dslr for the first time. i was at times unhappy with the color on bigger animals where my 105mm lens on a dx camera makes me back away a good distance. I think since lembeh i have learned a bit about getting better exposure from further away. Can you give me a couple of examples of pictures that you are talking about? Not sure whether it is something i have since corrected or do i need to retrain my eye.

     

    Amw, thanks for the compliments. just one of those instances where i got lucky finding it in my viewfinder instantly and got a shot off before he had a chance to scurry away. the comet fish does have a cleaner wrasse on it, but i am not super happy with that shot. hopefully i will get more opportunities.


  12. Thanks everyone,

     

    Tim: We were staying at NAD Lembeh (on Lembeh), where Mike and Simon were great hosts, but the frogfish you refer to was on the Sulawesi side. I had a tough time with the Mandarin fish also. Actually, I went out twice and the first time I got tons of good shots without a problem, including five mating shots. The second time there was a slight current and it was just enough to throw me off on trying to find mating through my viewfinder and I basically got nothing.

     

    Simon: We had a great time there, and we are back at it after a break from diving. I broke a rib after we left lembeh falling down a few stairs on Bunaken, and that necessitated taking it easy for a few weeks. Since getting back to diving we have been to Komodo, Donsol, and now we are in Dumaguete. We don't know where we are going next, but we have time for one more destination in the pi before heading back to the states for a wedding.


  13. I cannot guarantee what I am saying is how everything will end up, but I can tell you this is what the local operators believe. For the current government, permitting the new resort is a formality. The owners are too connected into the Sabah government. The only way to keep the new resort from being built is to keep it stalled until after the next election, when the current Sabah government is likely to be voted out. The local operators who currently control the 120 permits per day belive that they will continue to share 120 permits per day and the new resort will get 200 permits per day. This information was conveyed to me by a local operator who has eight permits per day. He said this to me immediately after he came back from a meeting of permit holders that they had in Kota Kinabalu to strategize about the new resort in November '08.


  14. I applaud the action taken by the members of this board in writing to Malaysian authorities. The dive community and indeed all of mankind need to find new solutions for sustainable fishing. But does boycotting help? The more tourist dollars that are spent, the more receptive the government will be to new regulations to protect the ecosystem. If the tourists leave, what incentive is there to protect? Maybe I am wrong about this. Just some fodder for trying to come up with plans that work, instead of 5 people saying the are going to boycott, which ends up being so small that no one on Mabul even knows there is a boycott and the resorts are still sold out. Any one else think similar or differently then me?


  15. Mantabuan is another island is the area that has pristine coral. You may need to stay with a resort further north to visit mantabuan. singamata is a lower end resort that visits islands to the north that are different then the mabul based resorts when Sipadan isn't available. It is difficult to get permits to Sipadan from Singamata though, but I would still recommend it for a few days.

    I spent several weeks in the area, and I agree that it gets quite boring if you go to Sipadan over and over again (but the bumpheads are very special), but the other islands add the variety to make it interesting. I especially like the dives under the oil rig.

    The current plan for the new resort on mabul is for them to get 200 permits per day and for the rest of the operators to share 120 permits per day. This will probably be very bad for both mabul and sipadan conservation. my understanding is that the way they were able to arrange for the permits is that the owner of the proposed resort is the top politician in Sabah, and he got approval without going through the normal environmental review.


  16. My wife and I spent 12 weeks in the Philippines this summer and visited several locations. Dauin was our favorite. Fly (or ferry) to Dumagette City. Your selected resort will pick you up there for a thirty minute drive. We stayed at El Dorado Resort and it was nice enough. I haven't been to Lembeh (yet) but I have heard the two compared. Seahorses, Frogfish, Various crabs and shrimp, octopus, and ornate ghost pipefish are common. I took my first steps in to underwater photography in the Philippines, so the results are variable. Certainly not as good as Scott in post number 3, but it wasn't because of lack of opportunity. Here is the link to my photos from Dauin: Dauin Pics on flickr

     

    There were several other locations we went to that we enjoyed. Puerto Galera is not that nice of a town, but if you go with the right shop you can get some very good diving. Malapascua and Moalboal were both pretty good if you find yourself on the island of Cebu. El Nido is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been topside. It also has beautiful hard corrals in shallow water, but we found that diving didn't add a lot to just snorkeling there. If you enjoy wrecks Coron is highly recommended, but the town is horrible. My wife wasn't a fan of the wrecks and we moved on after three days. We highly recommend Camiguin for topside outdoor activities, but thought the scuba diving generally wasn't up to the standards of other places.

     

    If you have a flexible schedule, go to Dauin first, as you may find you want to stay longer then you would expect. On the other hand, you may want to save the best for last.

     

    The two places we missed that we will go to next time are Tubbataha (liveaboard) and Donsol (whalesharks). we were there the wrong time of year for both, and I think you will be also.

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