A September Morning in Wisconsin


Dewy Webs

Out of the corner of my eye, I noticed these dewy spider webs while driving yesterday. Luckily I had my camera with me and was able to grab a couple quick shots with the 105mm DC while getting swarmed by about 10,000 mosquitoes.

I have to say again how fantastic this lens is. These are straight JPEGs from the camera. No editing was done to them, except for resizing and a little cropping.




The Nikon 105mm f/2 DC

I was recently able to splurge and get the lens I’ve been pining over for the past 6 months.

The Nikon 105mm f/2 DC!

This is one of Nikon’s best portrait lenses and is said to be their sharpest 105mm.

But besides that, it has a very unique feature called “Defocus Control”, that’s where the DC comes from. This has often been misunderstood as a soft focus lens, but in fact it’s quite the opposite. When used properly, your subject stays in focus and the background is enhanced with the best, amazing, creamy bokeh that you’ve ever dreamt of!

I really like bokeh. So naturally I wanted this lens.

There are only two lenses that are made with this DC feature. The Nikon 105mm f/2 DC and the Nikon 135mm f/2 DC. And now I am the proud owner of a 105!

I’ve been able to practice shooting with it over the past week and have been really impressed with the results.

I think the most impressive thing is the color and clarity that is possible.

Here is a little gallery of some of my favorites from this past week.
These are the JPGs straight from the camera. No edits, just resized.
Please click on the picture to see the full resolution.

I am looking forward to doing some actual portrait sessions with this lens. Hopefully the weather turns around soon! I’m ready for green grass, leaves and spring flowers!

A Frosty Morning

A beautiful frost and soft light covered the farm this morning. I was fortunate enough to be there and capture it.
(Click on the picture for the best quality)


Brandywine looked very handsome with his frosty mane.


Little beautiful things are all around us if we take the time to look for them.


The geldings are bored in the pasture this time of year, so they play this little game. First one to take a step back loses.


Frost was literally everwhere.


The whole fence line was like this.


Wana play mom? Charm knows is time to head up to the barn with me. 🙂

Photography Update

I feel like I’ve neglected to keep this blog up to date lately. Although it’s not intentional it just shows that life has gotten in the way. I’m still here!

I’m trying to think back to when I actually wrote an update and it fear it’s been a while.

Anyway. It’s November now and getting colder and darker outside all the leaves are falling and we’re staring winter in the face.

But thinking back, some fun things have happened over the past few months. I bought a new camera that I am really starting to enjoy. I ended up getting the Nikon D7100 and I am really happy with my decision. I kept going back and forth between getting a full frame camera and this one. Well, for what I want photograph, this just made more sense.

I also got a new lens. I ended up getting the Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8. I decided to go with Tokina because it was half the price of a Nikon lens, and had as good, if not better reviews. This lens is heavy and made of metal. It’s been somewhat of a learning curve, but I am getting the hang of it. I’ll be able to do some unique photographs as well as great indoor stuff. Think Christmas morning when you want to get a picture of all the action.. this lens will cover the whole room and is fast so it’s great in low light.

Below are some straight from camera images I took while using the Tokina 11-16mm.

I’ve started to take more pictures for people and I like it a lot. I don’t want it to become a “job” however. I want to keep it an artistic outlet and fun. So if I get one or two photo shoots a month, I will be happy. I really want to focus on people with their horses, but have done some family shoots and a couple weddings.

My next lens purchase I think is going to be a Nikon 135mm f/2 DC. You can read about it here. This portrait lens would be amazing to have. Right now I shoot most everything with my 50mm. I am so comfortable with it. I know going from 50mm to 135mm is a big jump, but I would guess it would be sort of the same thing. I mostly shoot outside, so I have room to back up and plenty of good light. It would be great for horses too! Plus, once Nikon stops producing this lens, it’s value will increase. So it’s an investment… right? Right!! I must have one!!

So keep your eye out for more pictures. I’m always reading and learning and trying to improve my technique. Practice, practice, practice!

Wish List

After much personal deliberation I’ve finally decided which will be my next camera body.

After reading reviews and weighing the options and looking at prices I’ve decided that the Nikon D7100 will be my next purchase.

I am really excited since it’s quite the upgrade from my D5000.

nikon-d7100My current camera is great and I’ve been able to get some great captures with it. But lately I’ve been doing some night/indoor shooting and I am not happy with the grainy outcome when using higher ISOs (can’t really push it past 800 without a lot of grain). For a recent shoot, I used my brothers D7000 and the difference from my current camera was amazing. Also I find that 11 AF Points is not enough.. this one has 51(!). Plus many, many more upgrades!

Besides that, Ken Rockwell raves about this camera saying it’s the World’s Best DX Camera. See his complete review here.

So yes, hopefully in a few weeks I will have one in my camera bag.

Now onto my lens wish list.

Since I do a lot of landscape and interior shooting.. I would love a nice wide angle lens. So, I’m planning to eventually pick up this 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5. I think I could really have fun with this one.

2181_AF-S-DX-Zoom-NIKKOR-10-24mm-f-3.5-4.5G-ED_frontThe next lens is a 35mm f/1.8.
I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE my 50mm. I’ve gotten some of my favorite pictures with it, but most of the time it’s just not wide enough. I find in some situations I don’t have the room to back up to fit what I want to in frame. So, I think this 35mm would do the trick. Plus it’s very affordable!

2183_AF-S-DX-NIKKOR-35mm-f-1.8G_frontAnd my collection wouldn’t be complete without a macro lens (Nikon calls them micro).
There are so many options, but I am most interested in the 105mm f/2.8.  I love macro photography.. especially of flowers and bugs. I could have some serious fun with this lens. I would probably disappear into the woods and you wouldn’t see me for a week.
nikon105mmednSo there it is … My wish list.

I’ll need to get a larger camera bag to accommodate these beauties!