What is a pre-blog ? Well, in this case it looks a bit like a blog, it has content very similar to a blog but it isn't a blog... yet! In a few months I will be publishing a fully-formed, all singing and all dancing blog. In the meantime you are going to have to make do with this pre-blog...

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27.05.2009 | 15:50 BST | My Elinchrom Ranger Quadra's have arrived...



It's been a while since I have been this interested in a new piece of kit. I've been working with Lumedynes for so long that I'm sure it will take me months to make the switch to my shiny new Elinchrom Ranger Quadra kit. I now have a kit consisting of one pack, two 'S' heads, two batteries, a charger and some of the Skyport triggers which all came with a plastic case.


Just after 2.00pm yesterday I went to The Flash Centre and picked up the new kit and I intend to write a full review once I have used them in anger. I have started to get to grips with them today and will probably use them on a job for the first time next week. The menu system will take some time to commit to memory but I have made some changes from the defaults already. The display comes set to read out in f-stops and I have changed that to watt/seconds in 1/3 power increments. The audible warning has been shortened to the minimum and I have noted how to turn it off altogether. I have also switched over from Channel one on the Skyports so that there is less chance of conflicting with another user.

These units are small. For those familiar with Lumedynes, the Elinchrom Ranger Quadra (to be known on this blog as ERQ from now on) head is smaller still and the ERQ pack is smaller than A4 on it''s longest side. It is probably a fraction heavier than a Lumedyne Signature pack with a standard battery but it does have the radio remote built in and the runner edgings feel a lot more solid. The LED modelling light is pretty powerful and my plan is to use it when shooting video on my Canon 5D MkIIs.

So far, so good... now let's take some pictures with it...



20.05.2008 | 13:12 BST | Why dg28?

In an earlier posting, I said that I'd never write about why this site is called dg28.com. I lied! Why would a photographer whose initials are NT call his website dg28? It's a question that I get asked with amazing regularity and, for the eight years I have had the site, I have always enjoyed the mystique. I did a seminar last week for some London Strobists and the first question that I was asked was "why dg28?" Every time I tell the story it gets less exciting - unlike most anecdotes which seem to get longer, more interesting, more adventurous and even more heroic. I have finally decided to tell all. Right here, right now...

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20.05.2009 | 11:30 BST | Folio work under way

During the week I went to a one day seminar event run by the National Union of Journalists for photographers to discuss the state of our industry, hear presentations about marketing ourselves, protecting ourselves and each other during public order breakdown siutuations, the state of changes to copyright and privacy laws and to network with our colleagues. I got a great deal from the day but the single most compelling presentation was by Nick McGowan-Lowe - a photographer based in Stirling who does more for his fellow professionals than anyone else that I know - about effective photographer websites. He listed a number of tests that you can apply to your own site to see if it is as well structured and user friendly as it could be. When I tested my own folio site, it failed almost every test. If you get a chance to hear Nick speak, grab it with both hands.



20.05.2009 | 10:19 BST | Garden portrait in failing light

As it's the week of Chelsea Flower Show, I thought that I'd talk about this quick portrait for Micheal Palmer - a garden designer who has been working his magic at my home. He has been talking to my wife and I for a few months now to get the design right and finally we got the garden planted last week. I had promised to shoot a nice portrait of Mike in the garden and I plan to have another go on a nicer day but I thought that this would make an interesting technique example of what you can do on a dull evening if you use the right light.

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14.05.2009 | 07:17 BST | Coming very soon

The other thing that happened at last night's London Strobist meeting was that Alex Ray from The Flash Centre turned up with the new Elinchrom Ranger Quadra flash kit. I have been on the waiting list to get my hands on one of these since two years before it was even announced. I love my Lumedyne kit but I have always wondered what it would be like if Elinchrom did something similar - something that made use of better battery technology and which was compatible with much of the rest of the Elinchrom line up of accessories. Well, now it exists and I should have one in my mucky paws in the next couple of weeks.

When it arrives, I'm going to do a few test shoots with it and run a review here on the pre-blog. It isn't going to be an in depth critique, it will be a genuine hands-on, real world, likes and dislikes sort of thing which will get added to as I get used to the kit.

I'm afraid that new toys get me quite excited. I have been shooting with Lumedynes for about twelve years and switching will be tough (if I end up doing that) because there is an old adage about not changing a winning (?) team. I force myself to think of Manchester United - they have kept the same manager but everyone else gets switched, swapped and rotated on a regular basis! I hope that's the last time I ever mention Manchester United...



13.05.2009 | 23:10 BST | Strobist social


Earlier this evening I went to a social event organised by the London Strobist Meetup group. I've mentioned these guys and girls before and their dedication to getting out there and shooting interesting pictures with small battery powered flash units is remarkable. I was there as their guest - in fact, their guest speaker. I was delighted to be able to do just over an hour talking about myself, my thought processes and a few techie and equipment related things too. It seemed to go down well and the Q&A at the end opened up with the one question that I can almost put money on being asked... What does dg28 mean? That my friends is something that only ever reveal in person, although know that the answer has been posted on another blog.

I wanted to mention this evening for two reasons. The first is to encourage interested photographers - be they newly minted amateurs or experienced professionals to get involved in these kinds of groups.

The energy released by getting together, sharing ideas and being constructively critical about each other's work is something that I haven't really experienced too many times since I left college in the mid 1980s. The second is to say thank you to Paulo for putting the event on and for inviting me. At a time when business is a bit slack and I have time to contemplate stuff it was great to be surrounded by like-minded folks and it was brilliant to get an ego boost too!


April 2009 - The Archive page

March 2009 - The Archive page

February 2009 - The Archive page

January 2009 - The Archive page

December 2008 - The Archive page

 



 
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