One Bloom, Two Blooms

Thankfully, this spring has been much milder than last, and the sakura at Japan House bloomed right on schedule in mid-April.


The Tamron 90mm macro lens shines when used as a macro lens and focused manually. It most emphatically does not shine as a replacement for a fast AF 85mm; its AF motor lacks snap and the ability to track rapidly. Since I don’t own a fast 85mm, I’ll sometimes spray-and-pray with the Tamron and hope for the best, which turned out all right for me in both these images.


Depending on the calibration of your monitor, you may or may not see subtle texture in the background of this shot. It doesn’t show up in prints made on my Epson 3880 with my usual B&W process, and I’m not sure it’s worth it to tweak the print to make it show up, as the light sakura really pop against black.

Free Samples

In January 2012, I decided to try a little “pay it forward” experiment: I offered a free print to the first five friends who commented on a Facebook thread. Ideally, it would be a win-win for all concerned: they’d get a one-of-a-kind piece of wall decor and I’d get experience making good prints. I set a deadline of December 31, 2012, and I almost made it…but not quite, as we will see below.

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Printing Grab Shots Large

Thom Hogan is solely responsible for making photography my primary hobby. I am indebted to many other photographers for ideas and technique, but were it not for reading Thom’s review of the Nikon D70 when I was looking for a camera, I wouldn’t be here today. I recently had occasion to experimentally verify his maxims for printing when working with an old vacation snapshot.

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