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Photography

Instagram: A use for missed shots and crappy photos

There are many times in a photoshoot that you miss the shot. The image is out of focus, you get under or over exposed images, etc. Well, don’t throw them away, you can still use those shots.

Long leg jeans

I went to one of the Intermoda Trends runway and found out there was a new rule: No DSLR photography allowed. Why do this at a fashion show? I have no idea, but if you didn’t have a press pass, you could not use a DSLR. I was raging because I could see several people using mirrorless cameras with the same sensors as a DSLR shooting away, and just because my camera was “professional-looking” I could not use it and they could use theirs.

So I tried shooting “from the hip”, very discretely just aiming and trying to get a shot of the runway. I didn’t focus manually, since I had no chance to even check the viewfinder once. I relied on the autofocus for the first shots, then locked the focus and continued shooting. When I downloaded all my images for review, I found out, unsurprisingly, that I had 200 shots of unfocused models at the runway. The autofocus got locked focusing the front row, not the runway.

Long black dress

I thought of deleting them all, but for some reason just kept them as JPEGs. Then I remembered how Instagram has a very crappy quality, and immediately thought that it was the perfect place to put missed shots. I tested my theory and I got a lot of likes from those missed shots.

So if you have some out of focus images or crappy quality shots, don’t throw them away, try posting them on Instagram, as quality and sharpness is not one of its attributes.

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Photography

Vogue Fashion Night Out 2013 Guadalajara

A few weeks ago the Vogue Fashion Night Out event took place in Guadalajara at the Andares shopping center. The shopping center is one of the most beautiful ones in the country, architecturally speaking, and this event was perfect for the place. Almost every store had DJs playing and gave free drinks and promotions. There was photo booths everywhere and the people assisting there looked great everyone wearing their best clothes. You couldn’t distinguish between models or shoppers, it was stunning.

Unfortunately it was a weekday, so I could only attend after day job hours, so I only saw the last runway. It featured two main styles: a very rock/punk style and an old fashion kind of 40’s look.

This was a challenging night for me, as my kit zoom lens is at the Nikon service repair shop. I only had my 50mm 1.8G lens, and with my D7000 DX body, it makes it almost an 85mm lens. Shooting with that in a very crowded place with fast moving models in the runway was a big challenge.

I managed to pull some few good shots that I’d like to share here.

Photographer with gold umbrella Shiny purple short dress Worried model girl Runway male model close-up portrait Purple and brown Black and silver accessories Black leather jeans and boots Black mini skirt in the runway Patterned stalkings Retro look Vest and hat Retro hairstyle with loops Veronica Assis and husband at the runway Retro style with a hat Keyboard rock player GST_0156

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Photography

Tampico beach, I miss my hometown

Browsing in my photo collection from last year, I found these photos I had forgotten to process from RAW files.

Looking at them made me miss my hometown and its beach. It’s never been a highly touristic beach, although it does have its high season during spring break where thousands gather and there is no space to even stand. But it is a nice beach, most of the year is very calm with very few people around.

I have countless great memories here, as I grew up here and most of my teenage days I spent them at the beach, either alone or with friends, but I love being at the sea. It’s been a little more than 6 years that I’ve been living away from the sea and I still miss it every sunny day.

Mexican candy salesman at the beach

Traditional mexican sweets

At the beach there’s always people selling all kinds of stuff. These are the most traditional things you’ll find people sell at the beach: sweets, coconuts and corn.

A man proud of his work

Carrito de elotes y troles asados

Cold coconuts at the beach

Two seagulls chatting

Two guys with brazilian swimsuits catching some sun

Too many seagulls

San Bernardo at the beach

Seagull flight

Small seagull in the air

Whenever I see a bright sunny day, I always say “this is a great day to go to the beach”. A phrase commonly and easily said in my hometown. I guess old habits never die.

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Photography

Fujifilm X-M1 mirrorless camera review

Fujifilm X-M1 mirrorless with 18-55mm kit lens and 50mm pancake lens

I had the opportunity to try out the Fujifilm X-M1 mirrorless camera for a week while visiting San Francisco and the Bay Area. I immediately enjoyed the small size and weight, being used to carry around my Nikon D7000 DSLR, switching to a small gear format was a noticeable change.

Fujifilm X-M1 mirrorless camera

The X-M1 has a 16.3 megapixel APS-C CMOS X-Trans sensor that creates very sharp images. It can record 1080p video but lacks an external microphone to get better sound recordings.

Fortune cookie at Great Eastern

What I liked

Coming from using a Nikon D700, the change was enormous. I’m used to have a big bag to store my DSLR, a couple lenses, a cleaning kit and extra memory cards. Also having either a long BlackRapid strap or, more recently, the wrist strap version, which means I’m carrying the weight of the camera at all times in my hand. All that weight at the end of a long photo walk is heavy. With the mirrorless camera, I had a small bag with an extra lens, extra battery, cleaning kit and extra memory cards, plus I got to store my sunglasses and still had room for more.

Fujifilm X-M1 with 50mm pancake lens

It all fits in a small bag

Small camera bag

X-M1 mirrorless camera fits in my hand

With its large screen, having a larger surface to view your shot is comfortable once you get used to not bring the camera up to your face. The Fujifilm X-M1 doesn’t have a viewfinder, so it’s all on the screeen. For most situations that is okay, but if you’re outside in a sunny day, even with the display set to brightest it feels uncomfortable. Also, you can’t have the camera turned on and ready to shoot at all times, since the screen will be always on and will train battery life. It doesn’t have a standby mode to quickly recover pressing the shutter button or some other quick way. It has an auto off timeout and to bring it back on, you have to turn the switch off and on again.

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You are not able to see the colors and exposition very well and the most hard to see in that situation is the focusing. I missed several shots because I thought it was focused but it wasn’t.

Unfocused sushi

Even though it has a focus notification turning green, you’re not sure if it’s focusing on the right subject. The good side of it is that you get to see the composition of your final image right there in the screen. When not under direct sunlight, you can see how your shot will be before pressing the shutter button the whole way. This eliminates the need for “chimping” and taking another shot.

On this trip I packed “light”. I didn’t carry my laptop, only my tablet and my phone and a docking keyboard for my tablet. The wireless transfers were a feature I appreciated because otherwise I would have to wait until I get back to get the images off the SD Card. The good part, is that you can transfer your photos to your mobile devices using the app. It needs WiFi, so if you’re on the road you can’t transfer your photos to your device right there. You need to wait to get WiFi to do it, unless you can create an ad-hoc wireless network. Oh and most hotels have a sign-in page after you’re connected to the WiFi, and it won’t work with those. There is no way to do the sign-in in the camera.

For a more professional and deep review of the camera, checkout Digital Photography’s review of the Fujifilm X-M1.

Here are more shots taken with the camera and all shots from my San Francisco visit post were taken with it too.

Garden

Table football players

San Francisco from Treasure Island

Bullets in the floor

Rock lady in San Francisco

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Photography

Fashion runway photos at Intermoda Trends 2013 part 3

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For the fashion lovers, more photos from the fashion runway at Intermoda Trends 2013, (check part one and two). This time was a bit more challenging because of seating issues. I didn’t have front row seats so shooting from behind and between people’s seats was more difficult, but it also added a different view to some of the shots. Definitely not magazine looking shots, but still interesting and entertaining.

I wish I could say more about the fashion trends, but I’m a newbie on that and I don’t want to judge what I don’t know. I just love to take fashion and runway photos. The challenge of the whole event, timing the moment of the shot while models are quickly passing by and lighting constantly changing, is a great place to challenge yourself to take good pictures.

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Categories
Photography

San Francisco and the Bay Area through a mirrorless camera

San Francisco skyline and the Bay Bridge

I had the chance to try out the Fujifilm X-M1 mirrorless camera. All the images in this post were taken with it, no post processsing, and I think the results are of great quality.

Back in the Bay Area once again thanks to my job, I mainly visited Oakland, Fremont, Berkeley, Pleasanton and of course, San Francisco. Since my friend Basilio moved to California a couple months ago, I had the chance to stay during the weekend for some sightseeing and shopping.

I tried ramen for the first time at Japan Town, visited my favorite restaurant in Chinatown and at night we stopped at Treasure Island to take some city skyline shots. I love visiting San Francisco and the Bay Area.

Gabriel Saldana testing the Fujifilm X-M1 camera

Soldier at the Japanese fountain

Japanese ramen restaurant

The Tesla is closer than it appears

Light at the end of the tunnel

Alcatraz and sails

San Francisco Chinatown entrance

San Francisco steep street

Chinatown's dragon lamps

Chinatown trade mark

Chinese tamales

San Francisco Van Ness cable car

Old lady playing rock in the street

SF subway station

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