Saturday, August 20, 2011


Huge thanks to James at Enlight Photo for organising the event in the Basement Carpark on St. George's Bay Road Auckland today.  The folks from Nikon and Canon were there along with two lovely models.

I took my Nikon D300 and a couple of lenses.  I borrowed a few nice pieces of glass to play with; 85mm f1.4, 50mm f1.4, 35mm f1.4, 70-200mm f2.8 and the 100mm macro f2.8.  My favourite?  I must admit that I liked the 85mm f1.4 ... closely followed by the 70-200mm f2.8

It was the lovely blurry backgrounds and very shallow depth of field that impressed me.  Focus was quick, accurate, silent and on my D300 it was like the 135mm portrait lens of old.  Gorgeous lens.

The 70-200mm f2.8 was impressive also, but the balance wasn't as pleasant with the D300 as it was with the D3s I managed to borrow. Now this was a dream setup!  D3s and 70-200mm f2.8.  Balance was perfect, weight ... well, it is quite heavy ... but the results in low light were stunning.  Shooting at ISO 12800 with the lens wide open I was getting very nice shots indeed.  Noise wasn't really an issue and the VR on the lens worked really well.  Impressed?  You bet.  I suppose I decided I'd like the 85mm f1.4 for the D300 and then the D3s with the 70-200mm f2.8.  I can dream, right!?!
I suspect the 85mm lens would be sweet for shooting the bands.  It's tack sharp and that wide aperture of f1.4 would be wonderful in the low light venues the bands seem to frequent!

There was a few flashes to try and the Orbis ring flash too.  I tried these, but seemed to prefer the natural light for my shots really.  I found some of the flash units awkward to hold and manipulate, but suspect this may be an issue of familiarity more than anything else.  I must admit to quite liking the circular catch lights in the model's eyes the Orbis ring flash gave.  Rectangular catch lights from studio softboxes just look a bit odd to me, so the effect from the Orbis ring flash was really quite pleasant in comparison.

So, did I have fun?  You bet!!  I think everyone did.  James and the enlight photo team did a stunning job organising the event and I was especially pleased to see the folks from Nikon there with some loan gear for us to try out.

I'll close this post with a couple more shots of the models.  Can't wait for the next event!!


  1. Very nice photos, Chris! Can't wait to see more :-)

  2. Can't wait to see more... thanks for such a brilliant write-up. Looking forward to getting the next one planned! jm