This week has been flying, as I try and make the most of the time I have left with the Macro lens, and trying to plan another trip up to the Mallee. I am planning more workshops, and trying to plan some things down here as well. Trying to get a business off the ground is never easy.
Macro Lens and Cokin Z-series Filters
When I was sent the macro lens from Maxwell International Australia I was also sent the Cokin Z-series filter bracket, adaptor and some graduated neutral density filters. I did try them out, but unfortunately the photos I took didn’t work out. Not at all because of the filter system, but more because of something stupid I did. I was trying to stack them with the ND filter I had, and I forgot to close the eye piece on my camera, so too much light got in from the back. I should make myself a little checklist for doing things like this, so I don’t forget little steps like that.
The real thing I wanted to know was whether I would get any vignetting in my images from the bracket, which is what I get with the P-series on my wide angle. I am happy to say the Z-series is bigger and it wasn’t a problem at all. There always seems to be a solution. The other thing they sent me were some graduated neutral density filters. I liked those, as the part with the filter or the colour was big enough that you could choose to use it as a ND filter over the whole lens, or if you just wanted to use it as part of an image, then you could do that as well. It had a lot more options than the ones I have seen for the P-series.
I do have to admit that part of the reason I haven’t used them much is because I am unsure of when and where to use them. I think it is something I should consider getting, and just have it with me at all times, and experimenting a lot more. I think because these didn’t belong to me, I didn’t want to take out the individual pieces I needed and just throw them into my camera bag, and the case they came in was rather large, so it was hard to carry around and then I would forget to take it. I also think I may have got too carried away with the macro.
Speaking of the macro, the Tamron 90mm macro, the images in this post were taken with it. However, for most of the images I also attached an extension tube to the lens as well. I wanted to see if I could get closer, which I could. Hand holding was a lot harder, and I got a lot more out of focus images, but I got enough in focus to make it okay. It was good to try it. The images were taken on another trip the Kinglake National Park. The weather had improved, but it seems much of the fungi that was there previously was gone, which is what we were looking for. We just had to look for other things.
I have another trip planned for the Mallee. I am going up in early November and will be doing two workshops, I hope. The first will be in Swan Hill, it will be on Saturday the 8th of November at 1 pm. I am going to run one in Hopetoun on the Sunday, the 9th of November. These workshops are going to be a lot more basic and will be more about getting your camera off auto. I have done similar classes down here and my One on One Photography Lessons are more like that as well. I realised that when I did the workshop up there last time that people don’t seem to know some of the things they need to know about taking photos. It is quite an intensive class, but it does go through a lot of information. Hopefully at the end of it people will have a better understanding of how to use their cameras.
The workshops will go for about 5 to 6 hours and after the intensive part, we head out to take photos, so I am there to help clarify things. Also, if you have any problems, I can help.
There is a company down here, Digital Enterprise Program, that has been set up by our state and federal government to help small businesses get started. If you go to one of their sessions then you can be eligible for a 4 hour mentoring session. I went to a session, something about your business online, and last Friday I had my first half of the mentoring session. I am undecided about it, I have to say. The girl who was helping me or “mentoring” me seemed distracted, and couldn’t wait for it to be over. While she showed me some things to help with my website, some plugins and getting the best SEO I could for it, she seemed reluctant to help me work out a marketing strategy, which is really why I went there.
The session was meant to be for 2 hours, but I was back in the car after an hour and twenty minutes. She seemed to decide that I was getting enough people to my website, that what I had written was fine, so why aren’t I getting customers or clients. She decided that they should audit my website. I am supposed to have another session soon, but I don’t know, will it be worth it? She is being paid by the state to do this, so why didn’t I get my two hours, that is what she is being paid to do. I could understand it if she was working for a company that was giving up their time to help, but she isn’t. Then she gave me a feedback sheet to fill in in front of her. I didn’t realise until after I had left that I she really didn’t help me work out what I need to do. Except for the SEO stuff, it really was a waste of time.
I have decided to go to the next session, but I will take the feedback form home with me, and I will make sure that I contact the company if I am still unhappy. I know it is for free, but we are paying for it through our taxes, so we are paying for it in other ways.
Well I still haven’t heard back from them, I can’t believe they can ignore people like this. I will have to keep trying. Maybe I should just do what I want and then maybe I will get a response.
I have spoken enough, here is a gallery with more images from Kinglake.