Friday, April 29, 2011

Not Your Mother's Point and Shoot

I love my camera toys. I like to have the perfect camera and the perfect lens for the job at hand. A lot of times though, the perfect camera and the perfect lens may combine to be several hefty pounds to lug around. When I'm on a job that's fine, but when I'm casually out and about or on vacation, it's just too cumbersome. For years I have been looking for a camera that would be both compact and portable, as well as customizable and have great image quality. I was tempted by the Canon G Series, but before I took the plunge, Nikon came out with the P7000. Being a Nikon guy it immediately grabbed my attention. Housed in a rugged body and covered with buttons and dials galore, the P7000 might just be the little engine that could.

After months of researching the camera, I got one for my birthday last month. I played with it a bunch of times to get to learn the controls and menus, but I didn't give it a good work out until I went to Ocean Grove last week. I'm not going to go in to a long, technical review. I'll just give my impressions of the camera in human terms that anyone can understand.

My first impression was that it had a beautiful feel in my hands, not too light, not too heavy. It has a feeling of quality. It's not your average point and shoot being too big to comfortable fit in your shirt pocket. If you're looking for small and feather light this is not the camera for you. However, if your looking for something that you can control as much as a DSLR with out the size and weight and with out sacrificing image quality then keep reading.

After shooting with the camera for a few days, I learned that the menu system is not quite as intuitive as my Nikon DSLRs. In fact, there were a few times I got very frustrated that I couldn't get the camera to do what I wanted it to do. However as time went on, and I learned the menus and dials better, I was easily able to obtain quality images that rivaled the P7000's big brothers. Yes, the autofocus is slower and less precise, but this is in fact a point and shoot. As you'll see from the images below, I was able to capture quite a few keepers on a short outing on the beach and in town. You can also see some more images in the post "Sunrise with the Eddies."  The lens has a great zoom range with nice quality throughout. There is also a digital telephoto which zooms in even further, however image quality suffers. Even in bright day light, the camera had focusing issues often with the digital zoom. Stick with the optical zoom range and you'll be very happy. 

I will post more as I get more familiar with the camera, but for now, I am very satisfied with it. I even had a chance to play with my high-end flashes which are compatible with the P7000.  I was going to post images of the photos straight out of the camera, but I decided to show images I played with in Photoshop since that's what I will be doing most of the time anyway. I wanted to show you the final image the way I would be doing for my own enjoyment. That's not to say I had to Photoshop them to make them look good. The camera is of high image quality, to the point where it doesn't get in the way of creatiing the art.
 For $359, it was money well spent. To read more about it, click on the link below to

Fit To Be Queen

A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to photograph Amanda's sister-in-law, Jessica, a day after her fitness competition. Jessica is a personal trainer up in Fulton, NY and entered her first competition after weeks of training. As you'll see from the photos, it was not beginners luck that she took first place in her division and second place overall.

This was a fun photo shoot. I got to light more for contrast and definition than for a smooth looking portrait. Since Jessica was done training for the time being, we finished the photo shoot with her first donut in months. Eating that donut was almost a spiritual experience for her.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

App Update

After weeks of waiting for App Store approval, version 3.0 of the Chesler Photo app is live and ready to be downloaded. You can download it by clicking on the icon located to the left. The new app is much more extensive and user friendly, with all new galleries, photo tips, news, and more. You can even request an appointment right from the app. The app will also link you directly to our website, blog, Facebook page, map to the studio and it will even text, e-mail or call the studio directly from the app.

I'm sure not many of you need such direct and intimate access to the studio, so to make the app more enticing, we will be offering app only specials that will be presented as news events in the app. As always, the app if free and now that is updated in the App Store, we will be releasing more galleries and news events in the coming days.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

James and Leigh E-session

April 1st, which is opening day of trout season, is very exciting for any fisherman in the Finger Lakes. It's when all of the streams that feed the southern end of the lakes get runs of Rainbow Trout. The season kicks off with the Naples Trout Derby on the south end of Canandaigua Lake. I fished opening day there once but I wasn't crazy about the elbow to elbow combat fishing. This year I skipped opening day since I was heading down to Ithaca on April 3rd to photograph James and Leigh's e-session, so I figured I would hit Falls Creek that empties in to Cayuga Lake.

I finally met up with James and Leigh after trying to connect with them several times down in NYC between Thanksgiving and April. We were cancelled several times due to medical emergencies, blizzards and even an early baby. We decided to meet in Ithaca instead and the weather was perfect. We did photos at Buttermilk Falls and in Robert Treman State Park with the help of my son Cade. Cade was not only my human light stand, holding the wireless flash when I needed him to, he was also the certified dog watcher for their little pug. At least I think it was a pug. Nevertheless, we had a great time and the photos came out cool against the backdrop of one of the most spectacular water falls in the area.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Sunrise with the Eddies

This past week, while the kids were on Spring Break, we drove down to New Jersey to visit my cousins near Philadelphia and then north to my sister's place in Ocean Grove. We stayed at the Shawmont B&B right on the beach. My sister just had her baby a few months ago so we didn't want to overwhelm her with too many people in the house.
My little nephew is named Edwin Joseph, named after my father. My son, Edwin Cade, is also named after my father. April 23 would have been my dad's 72 birthday. It's hard to believe. I can't picture him that age.
Thursday morning, Cade and I woke up at dawn to go out on the beach and watch the sun rise. Right outside the hotel, on the boardwalk, there is a bench with a plaque in memory of my dad. Cade and I went out, sat on the bench and watched the sun rise with my dad. It was so comforting to be with my son and spiritually with my dad, the three of us together in such a calm, peaceful moment. It was as if all three of us were really there, even though that never actually happened in this physical reality with my dad passing a month before Cade was born.
I really felt like there were three of us there. Who knows, with my dad passing before Cade was born, maybe Cade is my dad.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

James and Shannon E-session

When I went out to Buffalo for Cade's hockey tournament a few weeks ago, I met up with James and Shannon, whose wedding I'm shooting in June at Belhurst Castle. I met up with them in East Aurora outside of Buffalo to do photos in their home and in front of several of East Aurora's landmarks. If you ever find yourself there, definitely stop in to Vidler's 5 & 10. It's like stepping back in time when every town had a general store complete with an old fashioned candy section. My daughter Sarah was with me on the shoot and made out well in the candy section of the store. Here are some photos from the shoot.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Kris and Christiane E-session

A few weeks ago I drove down to Watkins Glen to photograph the e-session of Kris and Christiane. They came up from Florida so the biting winds and snow flurries on the south end of Seneca Lake were a bit raw for them. It was a dull, gloomy day which helped set the stage for some cool Hollywood Glamour looking photos. Even though I left them in color and even over saturated some of the photos, the feel is still of a 1940s Film Noir movie. Stay tuned to the blog as we announce some new studio sessions, including Hollywood Glamour portraits.

Sign up for our eNewsletter
For Email Marketing you can trust