Nikon D810

My Camera Settings For Nikon D810

I primarily shoot landscape and cityscape which requires me to take a long exposure and bracketed shots. Even though there is no hard-and-fast rule, there are few generally accepted practices among the photography communities for the camera controls and the settings, camera and the lens types and the list of accessories one should have to get better results. Usually, combining a full frame (FX-Format) camera with the wide angle lens gives you the best possible frame for the landscape or the cityscape shots. If you shoot with a higher resolution DSLR, you can crop the images, change the composition during the post-processing and still have enough pixels left in them to print in a larger size. If you are more interested in shooting buildings and architectures, you would get better results by using the tilt-shift lens which allows you to move (tilt and shift) the part of the lens in relation to the image sensor in a wide range of directions and gives you the better and more natural perspective of the structure.

Since I stepped into the photography world in 2009, Nikon D810 is my fourth DSLR but second full frame camera after D700. The decision to upgrade D700 to D810 was influenced by the need for a moderately higher resolution camera which was designed and marketed for landscape photography. Over the last 10 years, I have tried and shot in different camera settings and lighting environments. I have traveled to many places to get a good shot and also made countless mistakes repeatedly. I have learned the most from my own mistakes which gave me some invaluable lessons about what to do and what not to do during the shooting process. All these years of mistakes and countless teaching moments gave me my own set of camera controls and the settings to follow. Today, I want to share that information with you and get your feedback if you have any.

Read More

The New York City!

Living in Washington DC, only four hours drive from New York City, I have been lucky enough to be able to visit this incredible city many times in the last ten years. It is always crowded, busy and messy but still magical. It hosts people from all around the world and serves food from all continents. I read somewhere that, in the New York City, even if someone eats two meals a day in a different restaurant everyday, they wouldn't be able to taste all the restaurants in their lifetime. That says so much about the magnitude of this world's largest city which has so much to offer to everyone. You can possible buy everything that money can buy here. After all, this is the Financial Capital of the free world.

This majestic city is the home for almost 10 Million New Yorkers and travel destination for almost 60 Million tourists every year. No matter what day of the month or what month of the year it is, the crowd doesn't seem to be lessening. People are out and about even if it's blazing hot outside or freezing cold. This city of concrete jungle welcomes you with the magnificent view of countless skyscrapers which seem to be growing in numbers every day. One does not have to be an architect or a photographer to admire the skyline of New York City. When I visited this city for the first time in 2009, I drove through New Jersey Turnpike and reached to the city via Lincoln Tunnel. When I saw the glimpse of these skyscrapers for the first time (from a distance), I was in complete awe and forgot to take a photo. I went there for the July 4th weekend to celebrate America's independence day and witnessed one of the biggest fireworks in the world. Even though I had just started learning about photography, I took my camera with me but didn’t feel ready to go out and shoot. I returned with some casual shots of friends and family gathering and promised myself to come back more prepared. I visited the city many times ever since and had managed to take few shots here and there. However, I was not satisfied with the outcomes and felt something was still missing. I decided to visit the city again and this time, I went back fully prepared to capture NYC in its full glory. This time, I was determined to get the shots I have always wanted and from as many places as I could pinpoint.

Read More

My Experience With The Nikon D810

I have had Nikon D700 for more than five years and loved every bit of it. When it was time for an upgrade, I was looking for a camera with a similar kind of body and controls. After doing much research, I ended up buying Nikon D810 even though Nikon had just announced D850 to upgrade D810. Before getting D810, I was struggling between D750 and D810 but my decision was made easy once I got my hands on both cameras. Even though D750 is newer model than D810, same look and feel and control as my trusted D700 sold me to D810. Some argue that D750 has better dynamic range than D180 but when I was happy shooting with even D700, I was pretty sure that D810 wouldn't disappoint me and it didn't. After I got my camera, I took it to the New York trip this December and got few shots of New York City and some of the city skyline. After I downloaded the pictures on my computer, I was amazed by the dynamic range of this camera and the details it captured. One of my favorite shot from this trip was mid-town New York City view from my hotel room. After having dinner, when I came back to the room, it was already dark and the town was glowing with the city lights. The city view from my room looked amazing and I was excited to capture it. When I took the test shot, I saw some reflections during the playback on the camera LCD screen. I had no choice but to wait little more so that the lights from neighboring rooms and other hotels will start fading and then try another shot. After waiting for few hours, I closed all the lights in my room and increase the camera distance to the glass window so that the camera reflection on the window wouldn't show up on the picture.

Whatever I did at that time to cut down the lights and avoid reflection, it worked and the picture came out with every possible detail I was expecting from 36 Mega-Pixel full frame camera. When I zoomed the picture to 100%, I could even see a person inside distant hotel room. The clarity of the camera sensor is amazing, I love the dynamic range and every detail was visible in the picture. I used Nikon 16-35mm f/4 wide angle lens with the D810 and processed the image using Adobe Lightroom.

Midtown New York City View (click the image to view full size)

Please let me know what do you think of this picture and if you are also shooting with D810, please share your experience with this camera. I always appreciate your feedback or any comments you may have. Happy Shooting!

Travel, Blog And Nikon D810

I must admit that traveling and blogging do not go together and specially if you are traveling into remote areas where Wi-Fi is not readily available. Last couple of months, I was traveling into different places (of Nepal) and realized that not having internet all the time or not updating your social media in every hour or even not having to worry about writing anything removes a lot of pressure from your shoulder and helps you to relax and be more creative. It was a good escape for a couple of months and enjoyed every moment of it. While traveling, few thoughts came into my mind about blogging and how I can incorporate those beautiful landscapes of the himalayan nation but later I chose to stay away from it and enjoy the free moment I had. Sometimes, writing a blog can put lots of pressure and specially when you are running out of the times and topics. First, you have to think about the blog post and then explain it nicely so that you can deliver the message you are trying to deliver to your readers. During the process, you might have to include some visuals (photos, graphs or videos) and that would be an extra work on top of the writing part as well. It's a fun thing to do but surely a time consuming process as well and, if you have another full time job, it becomes very difficult to manage time for the blog regularly. It sounds like an excuse for not being regular on blogging but this is the truth which I learned from my own experience; hard to do full time job and be regular on blogging. Please accept my sincere apology for not being as regular as I wanted to be.

If you were following my blog in last few months, I mentioned about upgrading my Nikon D700 to either D750 or D810. I also mentioned that I was leaning towards D810 for few reasons which I would tell once I get the camera. And the moment is here; I sold my D700 and got the Nikon D810 last month. The main reason I went with D810 and not D750 was same look, feel and control as my trusted D700 even though some believe that D750 has a better dynamic range being newer model than D810 which may be true but I am very happy with D810's capability on every aspect of photography so far. I loved my D700 and the only reason to upgrade was to get little more pixel for cropping and get better dynamic range with the Nikon's newer EXPEED 4 sensor.

SuperMoon (click the image to view full size)

It's been few weeks I am playing with the D810 and I am very happy with my upgrade decision so far. I will be uploading more pictures in coming days but here is the super-moon shot I tried on December 3, Sunday. Please stay tuned and keep guiding me through my mistakes. Happy Shooting!