Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Sensor Cleaning

Recently I started to see artifacts in my images which indicated to me that it was time to clean the sensor. Matt Klaskowski did a great segment in episode 29 of the D town TV podcast where he talks you thorough the cleaning process step by step which really helped me out.

I used the Arctic Butterfly by Visible Dust for dry cleaning and then Ultra MXD-100 green sensor swabs 1.6* to fit my canon 50D's sensor together with VDust Plus solution which seemed to work pretty well.

I won't go into detail about how to clean your sensor as I think this is explained pretty well on the link but from my experience, it took me 4 swabs until my sensor was clean and after going over the sensor with 3 different swabs with no significant improvement I decided to bend the rules a little and adopted a scrubbing type method from top to bottom and applied a little more pressure. This seemed to work pretty well and after doing some test shots on a white background at ISO 100 @ f22 I can see that my sensor is now spotless .... and so are my images.

I also borrowed a Rocket blower from a friend which I used to remove the dust from my mirror and from the focusing screen. I still see some specks of dust when I look through the viewfinder but these do not show on my images so I can live with that.

Here is the link to the D town TV podcast episode 29 shows the sensor cleaning method but there is loads of great info available in all the episodes. Whereas in previous series D town has been a predominately Nikon show, it has now become much more general and is including some Canon segment's too so if you havn't already done so, check it out!

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Shooting the Eicher sisters

Sunday was one of those miserably rainy days better spent indoors. Luckily enough for me, a good friend of mine asked me to take some shots of her and her 2 sisters in my home studio so after a make up session with my favorite make up guy, Tristan Eckert who I have mentioned before in previous posts we spent the afternoon goofing off and having a blast in the studio.

This was my first time shooting more than 2 people at a time which certainly presented some challenges due to the limited space but it was really fun and I'm pretty happy with the outcome.

The main set up used was a 580exii fired into a Kacey Beauty Dish placed subject front shooting directly down on the models and then a 2nd 580exii fired into a 24" EZYbox placed subject left, aimed at the back of their heads acting as a hair and rim light. I also used a large white reflector camera right to provide some feel back into their faces. The flash's were all fired by Elinchrom Skyports.

My only problem on the day was that somehow I managed to get a pretty dirty sensor and had no kit to hand to clean it with, not having the luxury of having a back up body to shoot with, the show went on regardless.

Some helpful links -