Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Infrared photography with the Nikon D90

With a little sunshine peeking through the winter clouds I stole some time to have a quick play with my recently converted infrared Nikon D90. I have the Nikon AF-S VR 16-85 3.5-5.6G ED lens dedicated to this camera as it has good reviews for IR photography with no hot spots. I was in a hurry so I didn't use live view and I forgot to adjust the sharpening during post processing, ooopsy.

Try as I might I cannot get an in camera customs white balance to set.

The NEF images are very Red, I would have preferred a good WB balance but not to worry, I knew it was a risk when I had the D90 converted  to the Life Pixel super colour 590nm IR filter. I was considering using the BW filter but decided to keep my options open as to how much colour I wanted in a final image.

So starting with a red NEF image I work in Nikon Capture NX2 to set the white balance. 

Now that is sorta cool as it is. Hhmm perhaps some Vampire shots! Now I know a photog who could do some wicked work with that, Ren hey Ren where are you :) hehe.

This is what you get when the channel mixer in photo shop is used on the previous image. I am not a huge fan of yellow foliage but perhaps this would be good with architecture? Will have to try it out.

This is when the previous image has its hue and saturation adjusted in PS. I do like this and can see I will use it somewhat, this is what you would get from a standard IR filter.

This is when the yellow foliage image is converted to black and white in PS, I love Black and White.

I didn't select the best bushes in the back yard as the ones on the left are very thick and matted but with it being winter and little time to catch a shot with the sun out I think it worked okay for a test.

Now I haven't gone into great depths here, I am just showing how this has worked with my camera. For a really in depth how to, follow the tutorials at Life Pixel. I hope you get your filter from them also, they have invested a lot of time getting it right for us to enjoy IR photography without limitations.

So how do you do an infrared camera conversion in Perth Western Australia? Order your filter of choice from Life Pixel and get the folks at Hartland Camera Repairs to do the conversion for you. No need to stress out having to send your camera overseas, the people from Hartlands give great service and do a top job.
I have no affiliation with either of these businesses, I simply think they do a great job which is something I greatly appreciate.

Cheers Y.

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Setting up with the Nikon Bellows PB-4

Hi there, its been way too long between posts and now I am not even going to be talking about my jewellery, doh! I am taking a little time here to show the set up with my recently acquired PB-4 Nikon Bellows. I thought I would show you while I remind myself how everything goes together and now I have it down I can come visit myself if I forget!
I ended up with two Nikon PB-4 Bellows after I found a second one for sale on eBay with the Nikkor-P 1:4 f=105mm lens that I had been hunting for. It was too late to buy the lens on its own so now I have the two Nikon bellows. Not a totally bad thing as originally I started looking into the Nikon bellows unit for my partner to dabble with. But then when the first boxed Bellows arrived I decided I wanted to play too so I started to research into the bellows lenses etc and here I am today with MY setup.

Please excuse the iPhone pics, I don't have a second DSLR, the D90 is in the shop being converted to IR so the iPhone it is.
So here is the set up with the camera in portrait. If you are connecting the camera directly to the bellows you have to do it in this configuration. As I had read on the web about the importance of this and the possibility of damaging electronic connections I grabbed the recommended Nikon PK-11A auto extension ring to place between my camera and the PB-4 Bellows. I have the Nikkor-P 1:4 f=105mm lens attached.

It works a treat and makes it much easier to get the camera body on and off the Nikon Bellows. I place the PK-11A on the bellows and then connect the camera to the extension ring. There is a little leaver on the bellows that allows you to change between landscape and portrait camera positions very easily, just keep it pressed in while you move the camera and PK-11A.


Phew first step done, I can pop my camera on and off without a worry.
I use the Nikon D300s without battery grip. If you have a battery grip or one of the large pro models then you may need to use the PB-6 bellows with the PB-6D spacers as mentioned on the nikonians website to gain enough clearance.

Now I had to connect the bellows to the new Manfrotto tripod and head I had specifically purchased for my macro bellows work. Its a heavy set up and apart from possibly taking it outside in the garden or the bush right outside our back gate I don't think this rig is travelling much.
Now I am a huge and I mean HUGE fan of Really Right Stuff, I have been using them since my Nikon F70 days and all my gear is set up based around the Really Right Stuff system. For the first time I had a Manfrotto geared head as opposed to my beloved Really Right Stuff ball heads that I love so much for landscape work. You need that extra precision though for macro so I grabbed a Manfrotto 410 Junior Geared head after reading some reviews on line.
I have attached the B82 to the Nikon PB-4 Bellows.

I have the B2-Pro: 60mm clamp with dual mounting on the head, and this is how it all goes together.


My new Really Right stuff B150-B Ultimate Pkg has arrived, this gives me X - Y axis for close up work with my macro lenses and when reverse mounting a lens. However using one of the Really Right Stuff focusing Rails with the bellows also gives me a X-Y axis to work with.

Finally here is a very and I mean very quick shot taken with this set up, hmm I think I need to dust my office! Haha just joking, like that is going to happen anytime soon :)

Hopefully if you are setting up your own rig and you are a really right stuff fan this has helped a little bit. I did read where someone used a L bracket for the Bellows so they could tilt/shift on both axis without using the head. I will wait to see if that is something I would find useful as I start using the setup.

If you are looking to attach a Nikkor-EL lens I can tell you that both the 135 and 105 will work with a M39 to L39 Nikon F adaptor that is easily purchased via eBay. I have the older model lenses with chrome 39mm threads, pictured is the EL-135mm enlarger lens with adaptor.

I can say that you need to watch the lenses on eBay, I ran into several issues with fungus and one with scratches. I gave up in the end and settled with the 135 with slight scratches on the front element, the 105mm lens couldn't have the fungus removed so I lost out there.

If you want to reverse the lens get the EL 135mm Nikkor and use a 43mm - 52mm step up ring and Nikon BR-2A

Now I know this is not a great thesis and these are not great images, however it still takes time to grab an image, adjust the sizing and load it on the blog and write up the text. So please if you want to share this info do the decent thing and link to my blog and don't just link to images or steal content.

Cheers Y.

Thursday, 7 April 2011


Hi, hold on a mo, I just need to pop myself through the photo copier so I can create a carbon copy and then I should be right! Well I would if I could, but I don't have a photocopier and its getting close to midnight, I don't think I can squeeze through the fax/copy machine.
This reminds me of a  film I saw, for the first time mind, the other day with Michael Keaton and Andy MacDowell - Multiplicity (1996). Doug (Keaton) cant cope with both family and work so has a clone created, which results in a second clone and then a third, four Doug's in total.
Anyway I would be happy with just one more me at the moment, but then again, if I have an Yvonne MK II to do the house work and chores, I could have an Yvonne MK III to work and that would leave me Yvonne MK I, the original, to simply chill out and indulge in my passions, aah, bliss. Oh mind you don't make a copy from a copy as you can get into all sorts of problems, always use the original ;)
So where am I going with this you ask,? Good question.
Well, while as promised, I have been working on Viking knit, trying out a new little kit along with some plated copper wire. As well as continuing to weave 14 meters of fine silver wire into chain, at this moment Rumpelstiltskin comes to mind, lol. Alas I have no creations to feature here this week, and if I cant have another me perhaps just a spare set of hands would help.
Orders arrive full of beady goodness and I don't even get to open the packages on the same day, now "thats just not cricket" mate. Rings are here ready to weave into chain maille and new wubbers lay idle waiting to be played with. Everything sits nicely in a new portable maille storage system (plastic box) that sits idle on the lounge, in full view, just to be sure I don't forget my promise.
Meanwhile in the office my desk is over flowing with Czech beads, at least they have been photographed so they have moved from the portable studio, read - kitchen table, though they need to be listed. Then there is the order from the US wholesaler! that got here in record time and hasn't been opened. I was sort of relying on it arriving next week when the beads would be done and dusted! lol
So after all that I guess I am saying that times have been busy, that I am creating, but just as fine wine and cheese need time to mature to be truly memorable, so do my works in progress.

Thank you for checking out my ramblings, its way past my bedtime, good night Y   Zzz.....snore

Thursday, 24 March 2011

An introduction

"Finally" I hear my friends mutter as they stumble across my first ever blog, actually a few may almost be reeling as they have only just recovered from my new and again first facebook page, but that is more directed to my beady supply site, for now anyway.

So here we are, I welcome your company and your willingness to spend a little of your precious time reading my humble blog :)

I am one of those people with the ability to project into the future, to see the finished result before work has begun. This may sound like an amazing feat and that I should somehow be living a life of wondrous achievements, but alas this is not so. Instead I find myself with dreams, half completed jobs and just a few completed works. I am a planner, a reader, a researcher and a motivator (of others!) but not so much a doer. I envy the creative people I see jump in all hands on deck, throwing caution to the wind, turfing the "instruction manual" out the door and just getting down to the job. I am not a total lost cause, I have learnt quite a bit through study at TAFE and Fremantle arts centre plus photography workshops but I have so much more I want to master, I need to simply buckle down and get on with it and STOP the dreaming.

So here I am starting a blog, and here you are reading my ramblings. I figure if I post here that you will hold me accountable, you will be waiting in the wings for that new piece of jewellery I said I was working on, that technique I am developing, that image I am chasing. It is all so easy to stumble along the way, to wander off in a different direction when there is no one cracking the proverbial whip behind you.

I have come to the conclusion that you can't do it all, well at least I can't, I need to take on a couple of goals at a time.
So now for the accountability!
In my jewellery adventures I am going to concentrate mainly (still cant totally commit can I?) on Chainmaille and wire work for the next couple of months. I am not going to say how many pieces I will get done, that will depend on how much time business and family take up. However when I find I have time these are the two techniques I will be devloping so stay tuned. Oh as for photography, I need to sit in front of the computer and work my way through Photo shop and Capture NX2 so there wont be as much to show there, simply because by the time I finish working (at the computer) I fall asleep if I look at the screen for too much longer lol ;)

I do have completed jewellery works though and have poped a wee few images up now just to show that I am for real :) well we all like to show off our accomplishments to a captive audience at times don't we, and the ever tolerant family can get a bit "yeah what ever" ;)

Ciao Y