This post features photos I took in July 2014, the last month I had my Canon EOS 7D. In August, I sold it to subsidize the purchase of the Canon 6D. Mostly because a full frame camera is much better for the types of photos I like to take, like the one above. I do much more landscape and closeup photography than sports or wildlife. And these last two are what the 7D excels at, with it’s crop factor and more sophisticated auto focus.
I wonder how many states have views of their capitols like this, which makes it look like they are out in the middle of the wilderness. In this shot, the setting sun was shining under the cloud cover and hitting the Washington State Capitol building. While I did enhance the clouds, I did nothing to the orange sunlight on the building. I used the Canon 35mm f/2 IS, which I think is quite amazing for a non-L (non-pro) lens.
This picture is a good example of why it’s nice to have a zoom lens, rather than a prime lens with slightly higher image quality. I used the Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L, which is has excellent optical quality, but a 100mm or 300mm prime would beat it. I was able to frame the photo exactly as I wanted, at 126mm, which is smack in the middle of its focal length range.
To process the photo, I used Lightroom for basic adjustments to the RAW file, then transferred to NIK Analog Efex Pro 2. I used film simulation and the “double-exposure” feature to generate some out-of-focus halos and a softer look. By the way, I just found out that Google is offering the NIK Collection for free now, which is awesome! This is a powerful and easy-to-learn suite of plug-ins for Lightroom, Aperture, or Photoshop.
This is a photo of my daughter on a short family hike. She was just turning two at the time. Hard to believe how fast they grow and how fast the years go by. I zoomed the 70-200mm back as wide as possible to get some environment around her. I also used NIK Analog Efex Pro 2 here to warm the colors and create the soft vignette.
This is a beautiful little paradise that’s not maintained and a little tricky to get to. I was holding a steel cable with my camera and tripod slung on my back, going hand under hand down a near cliff to reach this spot. I used my trusty Canon 17-40mm f/4L, which I’ve had for 12 years, with a circular polarizer. I have found that 2 to 4 seconds is nice for waterfalls. Any longer is overkill and leaves no definition in the streams of water.
The 7D was an amazing tank of a camera, and fun for entertaining friends and family with its submachine gun like 8 frames-per-second. I have a lot of respect for its technology and toughness, but cameras are tools and I switched to the body better suited to my favorite subjects. The 6D’s larger sensor produces lower noise images, and my 17mm lens went from 27mm to 17mm. Like getting a new lens! On the downside, my 200mm went from 320mm to 200mm. Of course, these numbers reflect field of view, not optical magnification.