Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

Well hello everyone,
It's almost 2011! This year has flown by. I hope everyone is enjoying their holidays and has a safe and happy new year!

Just wanted to give an update on the big gift I received this year! My wonderful (and slightly insane :P) wife bought me my long coveted Nikon 10-24mm lens!! I was in shock, and still am when I see it on my camera! It is a beautiful lens and from what I have shot with it so far, it takes amazing shots, really sharp! I am super stoked to get out in the field and test it out. I also got a few other goodies, including a Really Right Stuff 'L' Bracket, a Really Right Stuff Quick Release Plate for the tripod, a hotshoe bubble level, 4 rolls of Ilford 50ISO B&W 35mm film, and my fathers Vivitar 2x Teleconverter for my Nikon F. So it was a good haul for me! How about you?

Well, I am quite caught up with getting things ready for my son's 3rd birthday party this weekend, so I will post pics up after sunday with shots of the lens and the other stuff! Hopefully some test shots from the lens as well :)

Happy New Year everyone! Be safe out there!


Friday, December 24, 2010

Happy Holidays!!

Hello there, long time no see!

So I want to give a quick update before the New Year on what's been happening over here at Craig Gosling Photography. As of November 25, I am now a father of 2 awesome little boys. The new addition is named Cooper. Also the oldest one turns three in a few days. They grow up so fast! So as you may have figured out, me and my wife have our hands full. It is a little difficult at the moment to maintain a blog, gallery, facebook fan page, twitter account, and find time to actually go take photos, then post process them etc! Phew.. So needless to say, I haven't been doing too much of anything like that. But, the New Year is just that, a new year (obviously, but you know what I mean :) I think Santa (my wife) is bringing me something special this year, I guess I have been a good boy? Expect some news in the next few days with regards to that :) So my plan is to get out some more in the New Year, to finally get my printer that I wrote about a long time ago up and working, to post process my backlog of shots! That's the plan as it stands right now with regards to photography stuff. So thanks for being patient, if people are still reading this blog, stay tuned!

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and Happy New Years to everyone!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A CGP update

Hey everyone!
So again, I am starting off my post with a "it's been awhile but...."

I will leave out all the details, but suffice it to say, things are a little crazy around here. My wife is 2 months away from having another baby! Haven't had much time for anything other than getting the house ready, nursery etc, and preparing for the little guys arrival.

I have taken a few photos here and there. Haven't had a chance to process them yet due to moving my office to another location. But there is some macro ones and a few landscapes in there. I tried out a new rig for my close ups, reconstituting a Stroboframe Camera flip bracket. It worked out pretty well, once I get to the shots I took using this I will post a shot of the setup as well.

I also have been researching a bit about night sky photography, including shots of the Milky Way. I have been scouting locations online and found this handy site that will give you an idea of light pollution in your area: The Dark Sky Finder

I found a few places I would like to go to check out, probably next year though. I need a faster wide angle lens as well, which I do not have at this time :)

I have been playing with an old Nikon F1 as well. I love it. I have some shots developed, but not scanned. I am looking into investing in a negative scanner, as getting them printed in a lab is far too expensive.

Let's see, what else is new. The new season of Fringe is starting in a few days. That is exciting! If you don't watch it, I suggest you check it out! Also, Dexter is back this coming Sunday. And a new show is premiering on halloween that I am really excited for, AMC's "The Walking Dead"!!

So good stuff is going on all around! Stay tuned for those shots I talked about and more updates later on!

Take care,

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Here are a few shots I have been working on

Hey folks, so I finally got around to getting some processing done, here are 3 new shots I have uploaded to the gallery

'Braided Branch'



'Heavy Sky'

I recently was fortunate enough to inherit my fathers Nikon F1 with 2 lenses (thanks Dad!), so I have been playing around with that. I have some film that needs to go get developed (4 rolls from my Diana camera, 2 rolls from the Nikon F1, and 1 roll that I found that is really old and have no idea whats on it). I will scan any good shots and post them up.

My lovely wife also bought me a Zone IV modified Soligor digital spot meter off eBay! It is awesome and I have been using that as well to apply Ansel Adam's Zone System to my pictures. Really fun stuff :)

I am going to write about going back to a film camera soon, and also include a little blurb about the spot meter! Until next time


Wednesday, June 9, 2010


Hey everyone,
So, my last post was awhile ago, and before that, well, that was awhile ago too :)

Right now there is a lot of crazy stuff going on. I would love to sit at home and just blog and do photography stuff all day! I am sure a lot of you would like that. But in reality, I have an intense job, I work 12 hour shifts, 2 weeks overnights and 2 weeks day shift 7am-7pm. I have a two and a half year old son, and me and my wife are expecting our second child!! She is around 13 weeks along at this point, we have no idea what it will be (maybe a girl?? shhh).

All this stuff (aka, LIFE) got me thinking. I am trying to do too much at once. Who can balance working shift work, spending time with my family, photography, kung fu, etc? It's too much sometimes! I read a great series over at Thom Hogan's site about getting back to basics (article here, a great read for every photographer!). He talks about all these new cameras, with auto everything, lenses with VR, autofocus, auto exposure, auto flash, etc etc etc etc. He also mentions (not sure if it's in the same article, but relevant) the emails he gets from people saying they are going on vacation next week, whats the best lens to bring?

So this boils down to people getting "lazy" for want of a better word, with the whole photography process, and getting hung up on gear. I am guilty of this too, I have spend countless hours online, researching, pixel peeping high res shots from various lenses I was interested in, looking at specs of cameras, tripods, MTF charts, distortion characteristics, whatever. I think we need to step back and focus on why we are doing all this stuff, a love for photography! Some of the best photographic memories I have are wandering around my old hometown with a friend, armed with our Olympus OM-1's, and our 50mm lens, taking shots of whatever caught our eyes. There was no auto exposure, no matrix metering, no aperture priority mode, no auto focus. I am starting to ramble here, but the whole gist of this article by Thom Hogan was get out there and grab your camera, grab a 50mm lens (or your favourite prime lens for that matter), set everything to manual and get back to basics.

Well, that article really hit me close to home, sometimes I need to do that with my life! Don't worry about all the other stuff, spend time with my family, play trucks with my son, relax and watch a movie with my wife. Sometimes I think I need to do everything, that I won't have a chance later, or that I need to process those images right away. The majority of the time that stuff can wait. Unless you are a pro photographer, life usually gets in between you and your hobbies. But as long as you can set aside some time for them, to keep sane so to speak, then worry about the really important things.

Anyways, that was quite a rant. It's late, I have been painting my living room and need to go to sleep. But head over to Thom's website and read that article (and all the others on there, lots of great information, especially for us Nikon guys :P).

Hopefully, I will be reorganizing my gallery soon. It is a little too complicated with all the different categories I have going on. When I do that, I will hopefully have a few new images to share with you all. I also have an exciting piece of gear coming to me, courtesy of my lovely wife. Stay tuned for more info on that. I will give you a hint, it is not a lens, it was used, and it came from ebay!

In the meantime, remember: SIMPLICITY


Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Finally uploaded a new shot

Hey folks,
So as the title says, I uploaded a new shot to my gallery. It's nothing too crazy, but I was testing out that new B+W Neutral Density (1000x) that I got awhile back.

This is at the same place I have some other shots of from last year. It was kind of a gloomy day, but I like the way it came out in black and white. This filter allowed me to hold the shutter open for 77 seconds in the middle of the day :) It gave a nice effect on the water and the locks in the background. I am anxious to try this out on some cloud movement as well!

BTW, I just looked on my computer, and I have a ton of images I have to process. It seems I have been falling behind! I am still shooting when I can, but just not getting around to going through them on the computer. I will slowly get through them, and will update here when I post up new (ish) ones.

Oh, and I caught a bit of a documentary on Ansel Adams on TVO the other day. Really interesting stuff! I am going to try to track it down to watch the rest, you should look out for it if you want to hear some of the back story on a legend!

See you around!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

An Update and some sunny weather!

Hey everyone!

Just wanted to give a brief update as to whats going on in my world recently.
Well, the weather is finally turning for the better. I think we are done with the snow (fingers crossed).

I think this summer I am going to be focusing a lot on getting my prints displayed in local venues, small coffee shops etc. I am going to look into local galleries too. I plan on going out some more and exploring the local scenery, I already have a few places in mind and a few visions that I want to see realized on "film" so to speak :)

Hopefully I will get more opportunities to have fun with my Diana camera as well. I have about 3 rolls of film I have yet to develop from awhile back. I like waiting a long time because then its a surprise when you get the shots back! So keep your eyes out for those in the next little while!

I am contributing two prints to be auctioned off to support the Cancer research of an Ottawa doctor, Dr. John Bell (read a bio here). The prints will be sold to support Pedaling Feat. Pedaling Feat are 2 women who are biking across Canada to raise money and awareness for Cancer research. On their journey they will be holding a silent auction where my print will be up for grabs. They have already held one auction on March 27 in Calgary, where my first print was sold and apparently received a lot of positive feedback! Read more on the first silent auction here, (in the first picture, you can see my print in the background! It is "Unlonely" in case you are wondering). Regardless, this is a very worthy cause and one (as you know) that hits close to home! So I encourage you to pop over to their site and have a look through what they are all about, and donate :)!

Okay, let's see, what else is happening. I finally got to experiment with my focusing rail. I put my dead dragonfly to good use and shot a lot of focus stacked shots at high magnifications. I believe they turned out quite well, I have not processed them yet, but I will do so soon and post the shots here for all to see! I don't generally like shots of a dead bug, but this little guy afforded me the opportunity to get some good practice in a controlled environment.

Tomorrow morning I will be making a trip out to some local waterfalls to try out my neutral density filter that cuts out an enormous 10 stops of light!! So we should be seeing some creamy foggy waterfalls.

Well, that's all for right now! Hope you all have a good weekend, and Easter and all that.
Take care

Monday, February 22, 2010

Happy Olympics! and other stuff :)

Hi everyone!
So its almost March, the Olympics are in full swing, and hopefully the snow is on its way out.

Just wanted to give everyone a quick update on whats happening in my world. Hmm, where to start...hah! There really is nothing too much going on right now! Busy with the family as usual. Work as well.

I have gotten some of my films back from the developer from my Diana camera, you can see them here: link

I also received as a gift, a B+W ND 1000x filter! Which is a neutral density filter that cuts out 10 (yes thats right!!) stops of light. So what this means, is that I can take super long exposures in the brightest of days if I want to smooth out water or cloud movement, or even make a busy street seem devoid of life! I got this filter in 77mm thread size, I do not have a lens with that large of threads (yet) so I had to get an adapter off ebay that would allow me to attach the filter onto my 52mm threaded 18-55 lens. The reason I did this was because in the near future, I plan on purchasing the Nikkor 10-24mm or the Tokina 11-16f2.8 lens. I am still on the fence about which one I want. But they both have 77mm filter threads.

I also got a focusing rail! I am really looking forward to trying that out soon on my test subject, a dead dragonfly :) I am going to use it to hone my focus stacking skills and for taking technical shots at high magnifications of tiny things!

I recently did a job for a client where I needed to take pictures for a brochure for a fitness machine the client had invented. It forced me out of my comfort zone of nature photography and threw me headfirst into shooting a model and controlling light sources and all that exciting stuff. It was really interesting, and I enjoyed it, the pictures turned out great as well! I learned a lot from the Strobist website in my preparation for this assignment. Thanks for making all that valuable info available to everyone!

Well, I am still planning on doing that write up of my Diana camera (I know, I know, I said that a month ago). Bear with me here, it will get done soon. Maybe now that I have written about doing it twice now, it will make less prone to forgetting about it again. Whoops!

Take care everyone, talk to you soon!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Working on another write up!

Hi, I am getting a lot of positive feedback on my write up for the tripod below on the various forums I frequent. Thanks everyone, I hope it was helpful to anyone in the market for a tripod, or to just open your eyes to another brand :)

I am working on a write up of my Diana F+ camera I received as a christmas present, it should be up soon, most likely after this weekend!

I am also in talks for another advertising gig, the last one was for a local window cleaning company, called Window Butler.

Another reminder to check out Doug Gosling's book, The Wolf at my Door. I created the cover picture for the book. It is about Doug's battle with Prostate Cancer, an excellent read, for anyone who has/had cancer or knows someone who does. It's a real eye opener. It is now available on Amazon here.

Stay tuned for more about my new camera!


Sunday, January 3, 2010

Giottos MTL 9371B / MH 1000-652 First impressions

Alright, so as promised here is my first impressions and a bunch of pics of my new tripod, the Giottos MTL 9371B and Giottos MH 1000-652 Ball Head.

I received this set up as a Christmas gift (thank you!), so I haven't had it for too long, nor have I had the chance to get out in the field and try it out. But I have toyed around with it in the house, mounted my camera on it and seen how it functions, and I am very impressed! I have not had too much experience with professional quality tripods, but this is a very well manufactured piece of equipment and it both the ballhead and tripod itself feel as if they are the utmost in quality.

Here are some specs before we get into the pics and impressions.
  • The tripod is a 3 section aluminum tripod with lever lock legs.
  • The leg diameter is 1.2".
  • It weighs 5.42 lbs (w/o ballhead).
  • When it is all folded, the length is 28.7" (w/o ballhead).
  • Extended height is 63" (5'3"), without ballhead.
  • Fully extended with center column at full height is 67.7" (around 5'7"), without ballhead.
  • Minimum height, again without ballhead, is 11" off the ground.
  • It will support up to 10kg (22 lbs!)
My only gripe so far, is its a little on the heavy side. But that's a minor point of contention for me so far because it will be worth having a quality, sturdy support. I can live with that. Also the carbon fiber version is pretty much double the cost!!

So lets move on to the ballhead's specs

  • It is 4.7" tall
  • it has a 2.5" base diameter
  • it weighs 1.3lbs
  • it supports up to 10kg (22 lbs)
  • it has a 3 way bubble level.
Alright, onto the good stuff!

Here it is all folded up and ready to go, with the ballhead. There is some gear around it to give you a little sense of size, my cell phone, my diana camera, and the tools that came with the tripod.

So, lets open it up!

So that's it unfolded, legs still at their shortest.

Lets look at some of the little details here before we get too excited.

Here is the MH-1000 logo on the ballhead.

This is also on the ballhead, the 3 way bubble level.

This is the bubble level on the tripod itself.

Here is the logo and model number sticker on the tripod leg.

This is the toolkit attached to the tripod. More on that later!

Here is the center column tension adjuster:

Okay, lets put a camera on it

and extend the legs by using the lever locks here:

to get to this point:

It seems to be pretty tall!

So it has this 'multi function center column' which is one of the main features I wanted this model for. Especially for my macro work. How this works is you extend the center column fully, then you release the tension on these knobs

and raise the column up, until you can tilt it over like this:

So now you can rotate the column 360 degrees around and lengthen or shorten the column as much as you want. When you get it where you want to go, just tighten up those same knobs and away you go!

Lets talk about the independent moving legs which is another feature I was looking for when shopping around for a tripod.
There is these buttons I will call them on tops of the 3 legs that, when pushed in, restrict the movement of the leg to a preset position for, I will say, 'normal operation'. Being a standard set up, all 3 legs the same distance apart. Here are the 'buttons':

You can pull them out to allow you to pull the leg out further, the above picture shows the leg at the lowest point. There is also a middle point as well.
Here is a picture showing the tripod extended and the 3 legs in different positions, this would be good on uneven terrain:

Using these buttons, if you pull them out and pull the 3 legs out the farthest, you can lower the tripod to its lowest working height. At this point, you will either need to extend the center column to its max extension or it will hit the ground. So you could lower the tripod and use the 360 degree center column mode, like this:

Or, if you remember the toolbag shown earlier in the post, it has a short center column in it. In order to use this, you will need to remove the big center column and also attach the head to the short center column. To swap the head over to the short center column, you need to use the supplied allen key to loosen this screw:

Then you can remove the plate that holds the ball head, and you simply swap it over to the short column, which looks like this:

Once that is done, you can insert the short column into the spot where the bigger column came out. You will need to lock it into place with this little knob, which aligns a small post into the groove of the small column:

and voila! you have your tripod at its lowest point and the short column installed.

(Another selling point with this model is that you can use it without a head by using the short column installed all the time, it will function as a 3 way head on its own.)

Lets talk abit about the ballhead! This is model MH 1000-652. So that means that the ball part is MH1000, and the plate on top of it is MH 652. They came together, you can also get different combos. At some point, I will probably upgrade to a quick release plate, hopefully an 'L' plate, which will let me swap between portrait and landscape orientation without detaching the plate from the camera.

Here is a shot of the ballhead:

The knob on the right, is the locking knob for friction control, the knob on the left is for the socket ball, and the knob on the bottom middle is for the panning base. Pretty self explanatory!
The portion that attaches to the camera is pretty simple as well, you have your plate that screws onto the camera, then you have the part that the plate clips into.
The part that goes on the camera has a slotted screw in the bottom with a little metal tab for easy turning (thank you) like this:

To release the plate from the base, there is a dual action release lever for added security.
So you will push and hold in the little tab I have dubbed '1', then you will pull the tab dubbed '2' over and that will release the plate! Pretty neat

And finally, here is a close up on the panning markers:

So I think that about sums it up!
First impressions are;
  • Tripod and head seem super sturdy
  • quality is top notch, feels and looks professional
  • has all the features I wanted, and then some
So I am very pleased with this tripod! I am super excited about using it in the field and I am sure it will serve me well for a long time!

I highly recommend looking at this model if you are in the market for a tripod

Ok, thanks for reading this, leave me a comment or drop me a line if you want to see some more info or if you have a particular question about it :)

Stay tuned for a write up on my Diana F+ camera (pictured in some of the images above)