Gliding Through Life

Just bought a new GlideCam HD 1000

These devices which come in three sizes (and match up to expensive, very expensive and excessively expensive) are essential if your handholding a camcorder.

Just watch this with-and-without video if you have any doubts.

If you check the user comments lots of folks find setting up steady cam devices really difficult. It isn’t. But the GlideCam 1000 (which is best for light cameras like consumer camcorders or lighter DSLRs like the Canon Rebel or Nikon D-90) is a precision instrument. It needs to be balanced.

Here’s a tip: Once you setup the GlideCam which takes just a few minutes add your camcorder. Now before you do anything else take off any extraneous straps, open the viewfinder if you have one that opens, add your camera-mounted accessories (I’ve got a light boom mic) before you start the process to level the camera.

Levelling the camera and adding sufficient weight to balance the assemble (so it moves slowly from a horizontal position when allowed to drop while you keep holding the gimbal handle) takes a few tries to get right but it’s not complicated.

What’s hard is walking. 🙂

Here’s how you have to walk. Fill a glass or coffee cup with water to the brim then walk around without spilling any of it.

When you can do this grasshopper, you’re ready for the GlideCam.


Zombie Wedding Photos


Just when you thought it couldn’t get weirder there are more images up at Peter West Photo and on Facebook from the 2011 Toronto Zombie Walk which now include my wedding portfolio that resulted from the zombie wedding where two folks actually got married dressed as zombies. Can’t wait for 20 years when the kids show their intendeds their parents’ wedding album.

2011 Toronto Zombie Walk Photos Update

After six plus hours of editing the images from the 2011 Toronto Zombie Walk should be up at Peter West Photo by dinner time. I’ve used lots of grunge filters and other special effects as this is the one event where I can go wild with the editing 🙂

All the images are up in big enough sizes that you can download them and use them on your website or even print them yourself.

I always enjoy shooting this special event and the photos are my gift to all the participants and organizers.

Enjoy. I’m going to relax with a coffee and a plate of brains.

This Changes Everything

Thanks to a Facebook post by photographer/model Lisa Bettany here’s info on a camera that takes a photo where you can change the focus after you’ve shot the image!

The camera is called the Red Hot from Lytro and it is what is called a light field camera. You have to read the claims and see the images to believe it. For example, in the photo on the right you can change which monk is in focus right in your computer.

It’s pretty neat.

Canon announces 1D X

Is this the best camera in the world?

Maybe especially if you’re a Canon shooter with a bag of lenses.

The new Canon EOS 1D X is a full-frme 18-megapixel beast capable of shooting 12 frames per second in RAW and 61-point autofocus. It has three image processors onboard and a one gigabit ethernet port. Of course at $6800 it should be good.

So who needs the ID X?

Pros who shoot everyday and who shoot a lot of images will likely love it. Sports photographers who want the speed and commercial photographers who want the huge image size will line up to buy it. Oh yeah. Photographers who like to shoot available light in coal mines will treasure the camera’s expected amazing low light capability.

So should you run out and buy one?

You know the answer to this is…depends!

It depends if you need these features. It depends if someone is paying you enough to payback the high price for the body. It depends if you’re physically strong enough to lug this sucker around all day. Don’t laugh. That’s why I got so excited about my diminutive Olympus Pen system. I can carry six lenses and a body around in a smallish Think Tank camera bag. Can’t do that with the D-300 and six lenses and you won’t be able to do that with the 1D X.

On the other hand the Olympus (or the Nikon) can’t shoot wall-size images out of the camera. And neither will shoot in the dark and the Canon does shoot 1080p video and can shoot almost 30 minutes non-stop. (This is a big deal as the 35mm sensor makes the Canon one of the best pro-level video cameras yet and the 30-minute shooting time means Canon has figured out how to keep the sensor cool enough to record this long at one shoot.)

All in all, a great new camera which most of us can only dream about.

Oakville Downtown Fall Fair

Photos from today’s Oakville Fall Fair are being uploaded to my gallery at Peter West Photo.

All of the images are uploaded in full-size and you are free to download them and print them.

You can find them in the gallery Fall Fair Oakville – BIA.

The upload should be finished by Sunday morning as there are some issues loading images today.