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Black Phoebe :: Ms. Jen

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Results tagged “flash”

Nokia N8, No Flash: At Alex's Bar Nokia N8, Flash: At Alex's Bar
Photos taken by Ms. Jen at Alex's Bar on Fri 11.12.10 with her Nokia N8.

Sat 11.13.10 - Last night I helped out Alex and worked the front door at the bar for the Ill Repute / Fang show that Ron Martinez put on. I used the opportunity of my favorite low light photography challenge to see how the Nokia N8 does at taking photos inside of Alex's, as the walls are all painted a deep red and suck the light out of photos making most photography dashedly difficult even with a flash.

With both the flash turned off and the flash turned on the Nokia N8 did a great job at capturing the scene and not either whiting out with the flash or being completely dark without the flash. Due to being at the door all night, I was not able to see how it performed in taking photos of the bands on stage.

Next time.

| | art + photography , moleskine to mobile

Wed 11.25.09 - I was attempting to take low light 'night' photos with the Nokia N97 on the edge of the dancer's pit at Royal Crown Revue's show at The Mint, but the still camera kept using the flash and blurring photos even though I had the camera settings on the 'Night' mode with no flash.

As the flash would do its thing, against my will, the photos would have a white out in the left side of the image and the rest of the image would be foggy (example of this here). This was really frustrating.

So, I decided to see if the 'Night' mode on the Nokia N97's video would work better, and it did. After the initial light meter reading, the video's color and lighting to the room is fairly correct and I am glad that the N97 did record video nicely in the 'Night' mode. I am happy with the no flash video capture in terms of light and with the sound quality.

As I have stated a few times the last week or two, the Nokia N97 is much much improved with the Oct. 2009 v.20 firmware update, but there are a few tweaks still to be made to the camera software to make the N97 a real flagship mobile device.

Of which, if the photographer wants the flash to be off and/or use Night mode, please make sure that the mobile's software knows to tell the flash NOT to flash. And it would be nice if the N97 would be more consistent about focusing on the objects in the middle of the focus square when green rather than some where off in the background.

| | moleskine to mobile

Now that video is all the rage, Flash seems to have been sidelined to banner ads, games, and corporate websites.

I miss the days of silly, homemade, whimsical* Flash animations with very little purpose. While I am not a big fan of all Flash websites in which most of the time I immediately exit, I do like fun Flash.

Where have all the silly Flash animations gone? Are art students and high school students too broke to buy the education version Flash from Adobe and don't have a crack code? Are they too deep into WOW/Wii/XBox/etc and celebrating 4:20 to create their own Flash silliness? Are they too used to the Facebook & MySpace communities to put up their own websites?

Do you have a favorite fun Flash that has been created in the last 2 years?


* Let's not even talk about silly, off the wall animated gifs...

[note: This post was written on Feb. 18th in Goa, India, but could not be published until later due to lack of wifi or internet connection.]

"Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue."

India as the bride. From all of the billboards and other street advertising, India is big on weddings. Thus, I decided to pull the above proverb from the Euro-American tradition and use it as a major theme for the photos I would be taking / am taking with the Nokia N82 for the Urbanista Diaries trip to India.

It is fitting as South India, where I am visiting, is in a period of economic growth and cultural change. On every corner there is something old, something new, something colorful, and who knows... possibly something borrowed.

As I take photos of the India that I am photo walking and driving through, I am most intrigued and captured by the contrasts in architecture, color, typography / signage, and people in the cityscapes / landscapes, as well as the street dogs that are in all of the cities. The color and geometry of buildings in contrast to each other, the environment and the bustle of city life has been particularly intriguing.

In Chennai there was quite a bit of great art deco architecture, Bangalore is sprouting glass medium to highrises, Kerala is a mishmash of old dutch colonial and new sky scraping apartment buidlings, and Goa is a fascinating mix of old colonial Portugese with 1940s art deco to 1970s socialist brutalisme concrete block buildings.

India is the place to be if you are a graphic designer in love with type. The range of signage and advertising from hand painted to the highly sophisticated is amazing. And then the placement of said signs in their environmental milieu can be extraordinary.

I have not taken a lot of photos of people, unless I have their permission or if they are within the context of the cityscape / landscape. I hope that when I am in Mumbai there will be more opportunity to take appropriate people photos, esp. of street fashion. Today I saw a Goan couple walking down the street, she in cuffed jeans and he with a moderate quiff. Hmmm...

On top of what I am choosing to take photos of, I have after the Chennai Photo walk and viewing all 150 of those photos in the context of the Flash interface on the Urbanista Diaries site, I realized that they functioned almost as stop motion animation when the Urbanista slide show was fully loaded and playing smoothly with the big photos and the thumbnails. Since last Sunday's photo walk, I have been purposefully shooting a lot of photos, not deleting, and shooting multiples of a subject as I walk or drive past as to maximize the cinematic effect of the Urbanista flash slide show.

There you have it: Ms. Jen's photo theory thoughts on shooting mobile photos in India. For the moment at least.

Irish Brothers - Nokia N95 Irish Brothers - Nokia N82
Photos of the Irish Brothers taken on Thurs., Dec. 27, 2007 at Alex's Bar in Long Beach, Calif.

The true test of any camera is shooting movement indoors at night in low light situations with no flash. The ultra true test of any camera is shooting a band at Alex's Bar in Long Beach, Calif, as there are no windows, the interior lights are low, the walls are all painted dark red, and there is no stage lighting whatsoever unless the band brings their own. Shooting live band photos at Alex's is a huge challenge without a pro-sumer SLR camera with external clip-on flash, but extra flash is a no-no in rock photography as it distracts the band, and at many concert venues will get one kicked out of the photo pit for using a flash.

Any good music photographer worth their salt learns how to push one's camera to shoot in any nightclub or concert venue situation without a flash early in their career. I learned how at age 15 with 400 iso film and setting my f-stops and shutter speed for low light but fast movement. With the advent of digital photography in the late 1990s, this became a challenge as most early digital cameras were point & shoot for daylight at best.

One of the fun & challenging parts of mobile photography with my various Nokia camera phones has been concert photography. To see how I can capture a photo with a camera that was never designed for low light / fast movement situations. Two of my favorite concert photos I have taken in 24 years of shooting shows were two photos I took with my Nokia 7610 - one of Social Distortion's Mike Ness and one of Mike from the Riverboat Gamblers. The fact that the little kickin' 7610 could get those photos... rock on! Rock on!

The big disappointment of the Nokia N80 and Nokia N95 is the delay between pressing the shutter button and ... and... and... and.. and.. focusing... and... and.. and... photo taken. Many times this can take up to 15-30 seconds, esp. in low light situations. How many times did I wish it would just trust me and snap, like the 7610. Stop over thinking, just do it.

The glories of the Nokia N82 is that it just takes the photo. Rarely is there a delay while it thinks, focuses, and snaps. In most situations, even at night with the flash off, it trusts that I know what I am doing and takes the photo without fuss. Without the big delay to focus and refocus and pick its nose and refocus again, like the N80 or N95 does, the N82 about 90% of the time will take the photo that you saw through the viewfinder at the time of pressing the shutter button. Yay!

In the above two photos (double click for the larger versions) I took the one on the left with my Nokia N95 with no flash and the one on the right with the trial N82 with no flash. The Irish Brothers kindly made my job easier by bringing in their own bluish halogen lights that that cast a strong upward light. In the above photos, the N95 was able to capture the two front men clearly and the background decently. The N82 blurred the Keith & Karl a bit, but captured David the drummer and the background with great clarity and lighter than the N95 did.

I also used the flash on both camera phones, of which I am not displaying the results as it was not conclusive in this case. The N95's flash did not add much illumination or significant difference, as the dark red walls of the room and lack of light eat up any of the N95's flash real fast. The N82's powerful Xenon flash was actually too bright and gave both Keith and Karl glowing red eyes, as well as added some flash light bubbles to the photo. In this case it was better without the flash for both Nokia camera phones.

Using the Nokia N82 to take photos at night and at a show was a delight. This is a big step towards camera phone I have been dreaming of, except for the fact that the N82's pre-installed Lifeblog is not interfacing with this MT4 powered blog when there is not good reason why it shouldn't.


Up next in Ms. Jen's review of the Nokia N82 - all the night and indoor photos that I have taken with the Nokia N82.

Mash Up My Flex

d.Construct 2006, Brighton, UK

| | tech + web dev