Journal

Kai's Bye Bye Party?

Last night in Berkeley, there was a party at Suzanne’s place for Kai. The party was originally going to be a going away party for him, as he was expected to leave the Bay Area for “gold and riches” along the Eastern shores of New York.

Fate had it that an opportunity arose in the Bay Area, which Kai eagerly took. The Bai Bai Kai party quickly became the Bai Bai Kai party! Former co-workers of his from Design Reactor/Rotten Tomatoes showed up, as well as a number from Berkeley Wushu (i.e. the same people). I remembered some of them from a couple of Sze Sister BBQ’s last year, but there were several that I was meeting in person for the first time.

Suzanne’s roommate, Trey, works for Planet Magazine. Check it out, it’s an interesting travel/music/photography publication. Trey has some amazing photographs that he took along his journeys to Southeast Asia, all taken with a Pentax camera with fixed prime lenses (shot on Fuji Velvia 50).

Susan

The highlight of the evening was taking portraits of Susan. I haven’t done many formal portraits lately, and while I would hardly call last night’s shoot as a formal session, it was close enough. It was nice to have a willing photographic subject in Susan.

My favorite in terms of composition is the last one. Unfortunately, the lighting in the evening really sucked. I was shooting primarily wide-open at ISO1600 at 1/60sec with my 50mm f/1.4 lens throughout the night. With the 1D, the images are very clean, but — as you are well aware — there was banding in many of the images. You don’t notice the banding quite as much with reduced-sized images, but at full-size, it’s definitely visible. The banding isn’t as evident when you print, but it’s still there. Sigh.

With Photoshop, there’s got to be a way to deal with banding. There are some Photoshop Actions on the Net to help minimize banding, but they all seem to give the images an unsatisfactory blurry look, in my opinion. Perhaps, I’ll spend the afternoon working on a new Photoshop Anti-Banding Action; after all, there’s got to be a way, especially if Canon won’t pull through on a firmware/hardware fix. Hurry up, Tokyo, let us know what you are thinking about the issue!

COBA

In other news, I’ve been organizing the first meeting of Canon Owners of the Bay Area (COBA), a user-group for Canon Digital SLR owners in the San Francisco Bay Area. Our first meeting will be held on January 30, 2002, in the Mountain View City Hall. Response so far has been encouraging from the Canon community, and I’m hoping that it will be a fun venue for meeting and discussing everything about Canon’s line of digital SLR cameras.

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