Underwater Footage with the Panasonic HX A1M Action Camera

I never thought that I would enjoy recording video. If you’d asked me less than a year ago what I think about the much hyped topics of VDSLR and 4k video I would just shrug my shoulders in utter indifference. But since then I have made an intellectual U-turn, so to speak.

I have come to realize that recording video is as challenging as it is fun. I don’t pretend to be good at it, but I enjoy it very much. The following video was recorded with my father’s action camera, a Panasonic HX-A1M. I placed the HX-A1M on the riverbed and started the recording via my smartphone and the Panasonic Image App.

Due to low contrast when recording underwater contrast, highlights and shadows were tweaked in Adobe Premiere Elements 14.

Continue reading

A few super macro samples with the Cosmicar 8mm f/1.4 CCTV C-mount lens

After my last post regarding the Cosmicar 8mm f/1.4 CCTV C-mount lens I have purchased a revers mounting ring for micro four thirds. It’s a 55mm to M4/3 mount mounting ring, which is too large for the Cosmicar. I have therefore attached the lens to two step-up rings – a 40.5mm to 52mm and a 52mm to 55mm. It’s not an ideal solution, but I wasn’t able to find a reverse mounting ring with a smaller filter thread. Anyway it works and surprisingly well at that. I haven’t calculated the maximum magnification ratio, but it puts all my other macro setups to shame. See the anthers in the following photo which was shot with the reverse mounted Cosmicar 8mm f/1.4 on my Olympus OM-D E-M10?

Shot with: Olympus OM-D E-M10 & Cosmicar 8mm f/1.4 C-mount lens (reverse mounted)
Continue reading

A few B&W landscapes with the Ricoh GR Digital III

Shot with: Ricoh GR Digital 3I’m not much of a landscape shooter and I think it shows. I feel quite helpless when trying to compose a landscape shot. When shooting portraiture, animals or macro I often get that “click…nailed it!” feeling. Even before viewing the photo on the back screen or on the PC display at home, I know that the shot is good. However, I can’t remember ever getting that feeling when shooting landscapes. It’s more like “click…hmm, is it any good?”
Continue reading

Slug eating grass – A short video

Yesterday night I recorded a short video of a slug – I believe it’s a Limax flavus – eating grass. The video was recorded handheld with a Nikon 1 V1, a Nikon 1 Nikkor 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6 and Raynox DCR-250 achromatic close up lens. I held the camera with my right hand, while illuminating the slug with my phone’s built in LED with my left. You can even hear a rooster crowing in the background. 🙂


Continue reading

Canon FD 200mm F4 Macro – the newest addition to my arsenal

Canon FD 200mm f/4 Macro is the kind of lens I wanted Olympus and Panasonic to release for quite some time now. In my mind smaller sensor formats, like micro four thirds and Nikon 1, are perfectly suited for macro photography – especially for skittish macro subjects, such as damselflies, dragonflies and butterflies. It’s a real shame that neither Olympus/Panasonic nor Nikon have released a long macro lens for their respective systems. In absence of such a lens, the best option is to get a legacy lens and a suitable adapter and focus manually.

Canon FD 200mm F4 Macro Continue reading

By the Danube river

Two weekends ago Sani and I were visiting Sani’s cousin in Veliko Gradiste, a small town on the banks of Danube in eastern Serbia. We were attending the birthday of her twin daughters. Before the other guests arrived and the party started on Saturday, I snuck out and went on a stroll along the Danube. For me this was the perfect opportunity to shoot pictures of waterbirds that can’t be found along the small river Mlava in my hometown of Petrovac na Mlavi. Admittedly the Nikon 1 Nikkor 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6 – being too short – is not the best suited lens for these kinds of subjects. It was a fun exercise nonetheless.

Shot with: Nikon 1 V1 & 1 Nikkor 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6

Nikon 1 V1 & 1 NIKKOR VR 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6 — ƒ/5.6, 110mm, 1/250s & ISO100

Continue reading

Another batch of macro shots with the Nikon 1 Nikkor VR 30-110mm f3.8-5.6

I’ve been shooting a lot of macro photos since my last post on this topic. Most of the time – almost exclusively, actually – I’ve used my Nikon 1 V1 and 1 Nikkor 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, with or without achromatic close-up lenses. You don’t really need a close-up lens or a real macro lens for larger insects like damselflies or dragonflies. The following photos were captured without a close-up lens and show how close you can get to your macro subject with just the 30-110mm.

Note: Click on any of the following photos to view it large.

Nikon-1-Nikkor-30-110mm-f3.8-5.6-macro-6

Nikon 1 V1 and 1 Nikkor 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6 — 110mm, f/5.6, 1/200s and ISO100

Continue reading

Samyang announces the new XEEN 135mm T2.2 cine lens for MFT and other mounts

Samyang-Xeen-135mm-T2.2-cinema-lens-teaser

The South Korean lens manufacturer Samyang – also distributed under the Rokinon and Walimex brands in the US and Germany respectively – has announced the new XEEN 135mm T2.2 cinema lens for a variety of mounts. This is the first of five lenses Samyang will announce in the coming weeks. There will also be a micro four thirds version of this lens and according to the info on the official product page the lens mount is supposed to be interchangeable, so that you can use one lens on many different cameras.

Continue reading

Cosmicar 8mm f/1.4 on M4/3 and Nikon 1 – A total bust?

A couple of days ago I bought a Cosmicar 8mm f/1.4 CCTV C-mount lens. Since there are no ultra-fast ultra-wide angle lenses for either Micro Four Thirds or Nikon 1, I wanted to try it out and see if it would work. What I wanted to use it for were nighttime landscapes with an emphasis on the sky. I always wanted to try out photographing the stars, Milky Way, etc. Of course, as is often the case with C-mount lenses, there was a chance that it wouldn’t work at all.

A rare lens

There is no mention of the Cosmicar 8mmm f/1.4 CCTV C-mount lens on either ebay US or ebay Germany – not even under completed listings. There is also very little info regarding the lens on the web. I found a thread on mu-43.com eventually, but this was after I bought the lens. There is a lot more info about Cosmicar 8mm f/1.5 and 8.5mm f/1.5 lenses, though, neither of which are able to illuminate the entire 4/3 sensor.

Since there seem to be a lot of similar lenses – at least with similar specs – I’ve included several images of my Cosmicar 8mm f/1.4 down below.

Shot with: Nikon 1 V1 & 1 Nikkor 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6 Continue reading