Macro Safari: Turn Your Backyard Into a Photo Adventure

Yesterday was a rainy, hazy day at home. I didn’t feel much like going anywhere but I needed to find something to do that didn’t involve sitting or work. I decided to break out one of my macro lenses and a flash with soft box diffuser to go macro hunting around the house.

Yard Sale Find: $10 for an Amazing Portrait Lens

I recently returned home from my trip to Egypt, and with my wife due any day now, I had some time to squander on lens hunting. A local craigslist post revealed that one of the camera shops in town was having a yard sale to clear out all of their old stuff in preparation for moving to a new location. I wasn’t about to pass up on a camera shop yard sale!

Underdog Rescue: Making a Nasty Old Lens Work Like New Again

What can I say? I’m a sucker for the underdog. My first real underdog came in the form of a 1973 VW Beetle that my Dad bought for me when I turned 15. After we pushed it up the driveway, he gave me a repair manual and told me I had a year to get it going if I wanted wheels.

Shooting Junk with Junk, or: How I Repaired a Vintage Lens Myself

Three weeks ago, I purchased off of eBay a “junk” Minolta MC Rokkor-PG 58mm f/1.2 lens. I had read so many good things about this particular lens in Minolta’s history that I really wanted to get one for my ever-growing collection. A fully-functioning, good condition one will run anywhere between $450-$700. The listing for the one that I bid on stated, “For parts.”

Reading the description a little further revealed that the glass had a lot of fungus, the aperture assembly was tanked and the focusing helicoid was seized. Call me a fool, but I bid and won it for $142 on the chance that I might be able to repair it.

Musings on the Power of Interpretation

Throughout your measure of time learning photography and shooting, have you ever reached a point of realization that there is hardly a place left on the planet that you can shoot where someone else hasn’t already? Especially the most remarkable places, we find they have been packaged up, guard rails erected, and signs posted that welcome us while at the same time restrain our ability to capture a unique perspective.

When Life Gives You Lemons, Just Keep on Shooting

Earlier this year, I dropped my Minolta 28mm f/2.8 in the ocean where it sat submerged for at least two minutes. I don’t have any tools on hand to tear it down to clean it out. I let it sit overnight on the air conditioner. The next morning, it had drops of water all over the inside elements and the aperture blades were sticking.