Tag Archives: fun

Link Roundup 03-31-2010

I’m trying something new with the link roundups, so bear with me while I get it all figured out. This post is testing the Postalicious plugin — it basically taps into my Delicious stream and generates a link roundup based on a set of parameters. I bookmark a lot of stuff anyway, but since separating out my Twitter accounts, I’ve been much more active (and collecting many more bookmarks).

Like I said, I’m still figuring out how I want to do all this. If it goes as I hope, I’ll be sharing fewer links more often with less work.

Master Bokeh with the Bokeh Masters Kit

Bokeh Masters Kit

Have you ever seen those photos with nifty bokeh shapes scattered in the background? Well, it’s actually easier to accomplish than you might think.

The shapes are a result of two things: bokeh and a mask (a mask for your lens, not your face). Bokeh is something that happens naturally with the right lens and lighting conditions, and the mask is something that you can purchase from one of our “local” photography bloggers.

Udi, from DIYPhotography.net, has put together the Bokeh Masters Kit so the rest of us can experiment with custom bokeh shapes. The kit includes a bunch of precut shapes and a holder that attaches to your lens so you can swap them out easily.

vmmm vmmmm birds walking_the_other_way

Bokeh Masters Kit Contents

The concept is simple — place a thin mask with a small shape cut in the center right in front of your lens. The shape acts as a secondary aperture and forces the blurry background highlights to take the shape of the cutout. Without the mask, the shape of the bokeh takes on the shape of the lens aperture. But the mask cutout is just the right size to only have an effect on the bokeh while leaving the primary image in tact.

Right now, Udi is offering up three different kits: Demo, Advanced, and Master. The demo kit includes the disk holder and five pre-cut disk shapes. The advanced kit includes the demo kit plus an additional 15 disk shapes. And the master kit includes the advanced kit plus eight uncut disks and a disk wallet to keep all your disks in one place. The uncut disks allow you to create your own shapes and designs.

Now, you might be saying to yourself “I can make this stuff with construction paper, why would I buy it?” Well, because the disks and disk holder aren’t made of construction paper. They’re made from a thin and durable plastic and the pre-cut shapes are laser cut to give you nice smooth edges on your bokeh. Plus, the cutouts are just the right size to give your bokeh nice definition while minimizing any negative effects on the overall image. The blank disks in the master kit also have a circular guide on them to help you keep the size in that optimized range — I made myself a Christmas tree shape and took a shot of… the Christmas tree, duh.

[UPDATE 12/11/2009] Sorry, I just found out that the blanks no longer have the guides because some of the testers found that it got in the way of cutting. But you can trace your own outline from the circle in the disk holder.

Christmas Tree Bokeh

I’ve known Udi for a few years now, and I was lucky enough to get a pre-production kit a few months ago. It was really neat to mess around with the kit and give some feedback to Udi (which he did take and work into the final product). So I’m pretty excited to see the end result of Udi’s hard work — he really has put a lot of effort into these kits. If you’re interested in the kit, visit the links below.

BOKEH MASTERS KIT PRODUCT SITE

BOKEH MASTERS KIT + GIVEAWAY @ DIYPHOTOGRAPHY.NET

And if you guys have any cool bokeh shots (all shapes are welcome, even plain old circles or pentagons), feel free to drop them in the comments below!

Link Roundup 06-28-2008

  • the Nuts and Bolts of off-camera flash – part 2, manual flash
    F/1.0
    A really great review of the methods for firing an off-camera flash unit: various connectors, wireless, etc.
  • Understanding Camera Exposure Modes
    Beyond Megapixels
    Although your camera may have a light meter built right into it, you still have some options for how that meter reacts to different situations. Here are some of the basic modes for exposure.
  • Jowling – Photography Fun For a Rainy Day
    digital Photography School
    It’s both funny and frightening what we can do with a human face and a camera.
  • Thomas Hawk’s Photography Workflow
    Thomas Hawk’s Digital Connection
    Thomas offers up some insight to his photography workflow using Bridge, ACR, and Photoshop. Definitely some good tips and insights — especially coming from a guy who posts around 30 new photos each day.
  • My new geotagging workflow
    All Narfed Up
    Bryan guides us through his new geotagging workflow using the Amod AGL3080 and Lightroom on Windows. If you’re thinking about adding geotagging capabilities to your workflow, definitely check this out.
  • 10 Steps to Maintain Your Camera
    HyperPhocal
    Cleaning our gear is something we should all consider making a part of our recurring activities. Here are 10 tips for keeping your equipment clean and clear of problems.
  • Matt Kloskowski Shares His Wishlist for Photoshop Features
    Photoshop Insider
    Matt does an awesome job at laying out some useful features that Photoshop could possibly have in the future. He even goes so far as to mock up the dialogs and layouts of the tools he’s dreamed up.
  • Do High-End Cameras Make You A Better Photographer?
    JMG-Galleries
    A philosphical discussion about the age-old question “is it the photographer or the camera?” Definitely some good insights shared in this post and comments.
  • 10 Tips on Getting Your Photos Into a Gallery Show
    HyperPhocal
    Getting started with gallery shows can seem impossible for a beginner, but here are some tips and methods for getting your work on the public wall.
  • 10 things I hate about Flickr (and its users)
    Neil Creek
    Neil posted a very interesting article about Flickr, Flickr comments, and Flickr users in general. Though he mentions the things that he “hates”, the article is intended to point out some of the flaws in the system and the way people use that system.
  • And here’s a fun theme slideshow that I found to be extremely creative. Found via Photojojo.


looking down. from hrrrthrrr on Vimeo.