• Log In
  • Sign Up
    • Greetings All!

      This is my first post so I thought I'd introduce myself and explain my fisheye photo madness. I hope to meet up with others that are Google+ refugees, be an interesting member, and expand my horizon by seeing new styles of photography.

      In a Nut's Shell: I'm an Travel & Editorial Photographer Currently Based in Bangkok, Thailand. I Use an 8mm Circular Fisheye Lens on a Canon 5D Mark III; um, ALWAYS!

      Are there any other photographers here that follow the time honored tradition of using only one fixed focal length lens?

      I've made a slide show to explain why I do this, so if you're interested, have a look. And, by all means please leave a comment. I know this kind of thing isn't for everyone but I hope to flush out fellow tribe's people who appreciate this kind of thing. After doing this for 7 years I have a pretty thick skin and rude comments usually make me laugh.

      Your Turn...

    • Welcome to Cake, George! 😁 I read your slide deck and I have to admit I'm completely blown away because I can't imagine anyone could put together such a great portfolio of travel shots with an 8mm. I have a 14mm and I rent an 8mm for parties now and then. They're fun but I never thought of them for serious photos like you've taken of religious ceremonies, buildings, and elephants.

      I laughed out loud when I saw this slide:

    • Thank You Kindly Chris! Glad you 'Get It' and I must say I like the cut of your jib -that's the main reason I climbed the mountains and swam the rivers to be here. Your appearence on our G+ Create group was much appreciated and I wish you great success on this platform.

    • I loved your SlideShare in explaining the evolution of your career and why you have decided to use that particular lens. Adding the personal touch of introducing your wife and the teamwork you create together is really wonderful to see.

    • Sorry for the late reply. I had to do some soul and web searching. I had offered the books: PENANG 180º, MYANMAR 180º, BANGKOK 180º, a small THAILAND 180, etc., on Blurb but POD prices were high, and quality was not up to my standards at that time.

      Several weeks ago I was all set to send MYANMAR 180º to an excellent printer here in Bangkok, but then the Rohingya human rights issues were all over the news and I thought I'd better wait. Honestly, it's such a beautiful country with lovely people, and the book turned out as good as or better than my THAILAND 180º book so that's a shame.

      Yesterday, after I read your question, (and thanks mucho by the way for posting a link to my book & asking this question!) I went back to blurb thinking I'd order a book and see if their quality had improved and I was put off by being told that I couldn't list my titles, such as MYANMAR 180º in all caps. Double-U Tee Eff?! I guess it's not meant to be. Part of me would like a publisher to buy my whole series, and I can get back to making more books.

      Any leads in this direction would be much appreciated.

      Although I've only been on for 36 hours, I'm loving the people and their thoughtful comments. As soon as I can hook-up the dog & pony cart I'll post a discount coupon for folks to get a copy of THAILAND 180º at a discount that hurts and add it to this conversation. In the meantime, you can have a look at selected photos from all of the books here:

    • Another excellent question. Can you believe that you're the first person to ask me that in the seven years that I've been doing this?! I was worried about using a fisheye at first since we sat down and made a daunting list of all the shots that we needed and I was relatively new to using that lens. Guess what though! A great advantage to using a single focal length lens is that one starts seeing how to frame-up a subject on sight. When composition seemed impossible, it forced me to walk around and find angles that I'd never seen in photos before. I even started seeing fisheye images while I was dreaming, which kind of freaked me out.

      Then we went to India, armed with another long list of photos to make, a guide educated at UC Berkley, and a driver that would take us off-the-beaten-path and show us things that were quirky and cool. A funny thing happened the very first day and kept happening: People actually called me over to make a portrait of them.

      At first, I was taken aback by this as I hadn't planned on such photos and my mind was screaming, "Portrait with a fisheye?" I explained to our guide, and he said, "Dude, just go bang off a few frames, this guy never asks for such a thing, and he's a friend of mine." I did it, and this situation repeated itself almost every place we went. When I returned home and looked at the collection of portraits, I realized that they were some of the best work that I had ever done. You can see them here (as long as the site says active) if you're so inclined:

    • Thank You Kindly! Very nice to hear that since I spent six months working on this presentation. I studied many of the great resources on the web for making SlideShare shows and it forced me to think through what we were doing and learn all about things such as how to pick a color theme and some new (to me) Photoshop techniques to add impact.

      Several of my colleagues hated the show and didn't mind telling me so in public on Facebook and privately. I almost deleted the image below as my friends said that I was making fun of Hindu Gods. It's one of my favorite images, and I felt vindicated when we traveled to India and saw that Indian advertisers uses this type of image to death.

    • That portrait shot is fantastic. I never would have thought of doing a shot like that. The way he is sitting with his produce arrayed around him — just brilliant! You see him and what he is about in the one photo. Love it!

    • Thank You Kindly! Yes! That's what I discovered about a fisheye lens: It shows the subject in the context of its surrounding at a wider angle than the human eye can see. This photo, Man on a Tricycle Rickshaw, wouldn't be as fun w/o the beautifully aged city of Mathura in the background.

    • It really is surprising to hear that that isn't a regular question. Even as a mostly hobby photographer, when I'm out and about with just my "nifty fifty" because nothing else fits the hiking backpack, I often find myself longing for either the macro or the wide-angle lens - and often both. :)

      It obviously speaks for the quality of your work if that question isn't raised more often. Seeing those portraits - yeah, I wouldn't have thought that, but they really work well!

    • Thank You Kindly! Penang IS a special place! I wasn't aware that the book was available on amazon. The Print on Demad company that I worked with a few years back did some strange things or maybe I didn't read the fine print. I will look into this and get back to you. You're talking about an e-book, right? Thanks for the welcome and calling this to my attention. I'm taking a break from working on my INDIA 180 º book to sort things out. Here's one of my favorite images from that book.

    • Thank You Kindly! Many of the subjects projected themselves differently for my camera. I knew that most of the time I only had about 30sec. and 3 frames before the magic was broken, which I found to be true with most people other than pro models who were making three times my fee. As soon as I was through photographing him, I saw him laughing and interacting with his friends. The "Monkey Man" below was just the opposite. They didn't come alive until they already had their treats and I was in the car leaving.

    • "It obviously speaks for the quality of your work if that question isn't raised more often" I like that! Thank you for your positive feedback! The 50mm lens is a great lens and easy to master. When I was going through Brooks Institute of Photography School, back when it was a top school, a friend of mine could only afford a 50mm lens and he consistantly blew us away with his skills. I really do think that a zoom lens stunts a photogs growth as far as learning to see photos before raising the camera to capture and image.