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Today has been bad weather wise, I wasn’t sure what to do, but the one thing I did know, was that I wanted to try out the EOS 600D.  I also wanted to try some more images in the Silver Efex Pro 2, I need to use it as much as I can before the trial period ends.  Since the weather was bad, I decided to buy some roses to see what I could come up with.  I will admit, I’m not a big fan of roses, no idea why I bought them, you should do still life images of flowers you love.

I lay this down on top of the canvas that I usually use as a backdrop.  It is not black, and so I tried to make it black, but for some reason it wouldn’t really work with this image.

I don’t have a flash for the 600D, there is a built in flash, but I don’t really like the built in flashes, you can never get enough control.  I do have a couple of external flashes, but they are Nikon, so no good for these.  I decided to try taking the photo without a tripod, I had to up the ISO and I am pleasantly surprised at how good they turned out with a higher ISO.  I was also very happy with how close I could get to take the photos.  I was only about 40cm away from this.  I was using the 18-135mm lens.

Using Silver Efex I processed this image.  I played with a lot more things.  I really do like the software, it is very user friendly, though, if I had a criticism, it would be undoing something once you have done it can be a bit tricky, thank godness for the Ctrl Z command.  It undoes so many things.  I did add a filter, but it was very subtle.

Again, this was photographed with the 600D.  I had it on Aperture priority, and I started with the aperture at f5.6, but this was taken with an aperture of f7 or f8, still, zooming in gave me a very short depth of field, and the third rose is out of focus.  I haven’t decided if that bothers me or  not.  I don’t mind it.  I probably should have used my tripod, but my mouth is still bothering me some, and I was being lazy.  I did buy a lot of roses, so I might have another go later on, or tomorrow.  I would also like to take much better images so I can do more with the processing.

Again, processed with Silver Efex, and again it has been processed differently.  I like how many different things you can do.  I think if I had to try and do all this in Photoshop I would be at a loss, because I didn’t know how much is possible.

I was standing on the table to get this image.  They almost look like paper.  I don’t have a colour version of this, just the one processed in Silver Efex.  I played with many more effects in this one.  I did some vignetting to see what it would be like.  I put a heavier tone on the image.  It also has much more of an antique feel, which does seem appropriate for roses.

I am really liking this software, I’m not going to lie to you.  I am going to have to find a way to get it I think.

I have heard from Nik Software and Adrian also commented that if you register with them, or join their mailing list they also have free live training sessions and sometimes you might be able to get a 20% discount on their software.  That would be good.

Updates

I got a response from Nikon today, and found out the information I have been after, that was a relief.  It was so disappointing that they hadn’t replied before.  You understand how it is, I love Nikon and have always thought they were the best, and then when I asked for help, and then received none, well, I was disappointed.  I am so glad they have replied to me.  I know what I need to know now to help me write my online courses, so that is good.

I have approached Crumpler about a camera bag.  I was sent a response that the woman who dealt with requests like mine was away and was meant to be back last Monday.  I haven’t heard anything yet, though I am hoping that is just because she has just got back from holidays and is catching up, so will give her a little more time.

I don’t know how many of you have heard about Crumpler, it is an Australian Company, and I am pretty sure most Australians have heard of them.  They make bags of all sorts.  They give all their bags a lifetime guarantee on the stitching or maybe on the whole bag, which I think is fantastic.  If the stitching comes undone, they will just restitch it for you, I wish Lowepro did that.

I think they became famous for their courier bags, not totally sure, but if you ask anyone who has one, they all say the bags are comfortable and very durable.  I have to say, that is exactly what I am looking for in a camera bag.  I do have Crumpler camera straps, I love them and they are so comfortable.  I found the Nikon straps that came with my camera weren’t comfortable when I was carrying my camera around my neck for long periods, but the Crumpler straps are wide, padded and brilliant.

I also heard from another company that I sent an enquiry about, it was for some other HDR software called Oloneo, someone left a comment about it, and I am so sorry, I can’t remember which post or who it was to say thank you, so please, if you are reading this let me know.  They have given me some information, and I will download a free trial of it and do a review to let you know what I think about it.

It will be hard using other HDR software.  I did set up an affiliation with Photomatix Pro, so if any of you buy it using the code I would get a percentage of the software, but I don’t feel that I have to be loyal for that product.  I have a few different types of HDR software to test and try out, so it is going to be good to see what I think is best in the end.

Anyway, enough words for today.  I hope lots of you have downloaded the free trial version of Silver Efex and have been playing.  It is a lot of fun.

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