Saturday, March 17, 2012

Going Manual Part 2

     Oh, God!  The manual!

     So I mentioned on my previous blog that I got myself a Samyang 85mm f/1.4 lens, right?  I've read a lot about it in reviews and forums, before deciding to buy one.  But none of those prepared me for what "manual" really is, when it comes to lenses.

     Being ignoramus to such low technology, I find it exciting.  True!  Exciting!  Focus ring?  Sure it takes some twisting here and there but I love that part.  Sure, it consumes so much time to get the focusing right, but I don't mind it at all since I always take my time before taking one single shot.  Aperture ring?  Sure, no problem!  I'm new to photography so I have not gotten used to any system yet.

     It's when you combine them all in application that starts to dwindle my confidence.  Since I didn't get to know my camera well enough, I wasn't aware that I'm using some sort of focusing screen that's fit for auto lenses.  Something that keeps the viewfinder bright.  So when it came to focusing, twisting the thing didn't seem to give me much trouble.  It's when I upload them on my computer that I see how badly focused they are.  The thing is, my viewfinder isn't large enough for me to see what's really happening.  But I suspect, even if I'm using a full-frame camera, I won't notice anything.  Hell, even my LCD screen doesn't show much difference...

     Which gave me the idea of using Live View.  I thought I could simply use digital zoom to get the perfect focus.  And then came another problem.  As I switched to live view, my lcd went all black!  At this point, I just assumed it's all part of the manual thing.  So I have to settle with looking through the viewfinder.  But then came another problem.  Aperture ring!  Again, I'm fine twisting the parts to set the aperture.  It's when it gets twisted that's problematic.  Once I get past f/8, I just can't see anything anymore.  This made me really frustrated.  Not knowing the lens was really designed for portraits, I didn't intend this lens for such.  I was not interested on portrait photography.  I want landscapes where I could use f/22!

     These are the times when I think taking courses gets the upper hand.  Relying on teaching myself, I get lost sometimes, and this was one of them.  Despite my months of reading, it really didn't matter.  The thing is, I was too cocky to really digest the small information that might have been mentioned in forums.  All I had in mind before was, "Yeah, I think I can do that." and we do know that "thinking" and "doing" are very different from each other, don't we?

1 comment:

  1. Most of the current 85mm lenses are not optimized to perform their best at infinity focus stopped down. Probably an old Nikkor (85mm 1.8 AI, or AF-D) would have worked a lot better for you.

    About seeing things past f8, if u use a full manual lens (of any kind rlly) you won't have an auto diaphragm, so in order to see something you need to stop the lens down after you focused. (this is done automatically with normal lenses with electrical connection)