And so, the turtles may sleep...

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It's not really a night-time photo. Almost, but not completely. But there isn't a discussion space called, "Almost Night-time Photos", either. But it's almost dark, he mutters. Almost. Well.

.....

On our trip to Japan this last autumn, Alice and I arrived just after a typhoon, and the first full day was spent getting acclimated to Kyoto, with the close of the day spent wandering around the grounds of the To-ji Temple, not far from Kyoto Station, and close to our hotel. It's lovely, with a five tiered pagoda, built and rebuilt five times, most recently in 1643. The kondo (main hall) and the pagoda have a lovely accompanying garden, including a water pool.

Arriving later in the day is a bit problematic in the autumn, as the grounds close before 1700h, and the sun is setting close onto that time. A lot to see, little time, and the skies are beginning to turn into colour with the late day haze.

But children are everywhere, running back and forth, and as children do, when they run up to the water's edge, the turtles trying to absorb the last rays of the sun jump (as much as turtles may) into the water, only to climb back up after a few moments. It must be terribly hard to be a turtle in the grounds and water of a temple, for children are always running, and each day, a new group of children will come to the temple grounds.

But the sun is setting now, the light is shifting quickly over the kondo, a red line limning the edge of the ridgepost of another building. After a day of splashing back and forth into the water, climbing back up time and again, now, now the turtles may sleep.

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D100, 12-24mm AFS/DX, 1/320s, f/4, processed in NC, no crop

Even if it's not night - always shoot.



John P.
 
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John it's a beautiful story and an even more impressive image. The subtle pastel colors as they play in the water enhance this striking place as the silhouette of the temple struggles to be seen in the fast fading light. Very well taken image.
 
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Gordon and Frank :


Thanks for the kind words.

I've been wanting to get started posting again, but between the respiratory bug I've had and work related deadlines, I haven't been doing so much.

This was an opportunity to get started over here with something a little more substantive. Let's see what else I can accomplish now.


John P.
 
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Gordon :

Good spotting.

They had just climbed back when I shot the photo, leading me into having a (semi) interesting story about the shot...


John P.
 
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I'm beginning to feel like I need to pay somebody for the privilege of perusing these wonderful works of art...

John, awesome picture and background info to set the mood.

Are you happy with the 12-24?
 
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DavidM said:
I'm beginning to feel like I need to pay somebody for the privilege of perusing these wonderful works of art... Are you happy with the 12-24?
David :

Thanks for the kind words.

I'm quite pleased with the 12-24mm AFS/DX.

It's giving me a great deal of flexibility on the wide end, with just enough of the fisheye end of things to allow me to capture some shots where the linear direction simply won't let me land the shot. The quality of images is very good at 12mm, better at 14-16mm, and excellent above those FLs. The focus speed is crisply quick, the zoom function silk-smooth, and the overall sense of the lens in the hand is excellent. The colour delivery from the lens is delightful. It even has a reasonable level of bokeh (for a WA and if that's important in this kind of generally non-close application).

Is it perfect ?

No. One can see less than desirable distortions in certain shots, there's some CA visible at 12mm in some shots, and the f/4 minimum aperture limits low light level shots.

Is it a good lens for the cost ?

Yes, absolutely. No lens comes without compromises, but the question is whether the compromises are overcome by the advantages. In this case, it's quite clearly on the side of the advantages. I might get better response at 12mm with a dedicated prime (or perhaps more precisely in Nikon lenses at 10.5mm), but I don't want to carry that many lenses as a rule.

And the combination of the 12-24mm AFS/DX and the 24-120mm AFS/VR is one of the easiest walking around complements I can get for urban/suburban photography. In an ideal world, I'll also bring the 28mm f/1.4 for the low light shots, but I can get away with those other two for a lot of shooting.

By the by, I've been using the 12-24mm recently doing some architectural shooting for a friend (an architect and builder), and it's exceptionally handy for work in many of the tighter spaces while still allowing for less distorted WA shots at the longer end. This could be the most flexible lens for indoor real estate photography that I've ever played with.



John P.
 
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John -

Thanks for the nice review. I've been considering this lens to go along with my D100 for landscape shots, as sometimes the 17-35 isn't quite wide enough. The small amount of distortion that I've seen in shots taken with this lens hasn't put me off too much.
 
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DavidM said:
Thanks for the nice review. I've been considering this lens to go along with my D100 for landscape shots, as sometimes the 17-35 isn't quite wide enough. The small amount of distortion that I've seen in shots taken with this lens hasn't put me off too much.
David :

Chuckle. Well, my reviews are worth what they cost you ! {amused laughter}

Seriously, the 12-24mm AFS/DX was a tough sell for me. In the end, I swapped a lens I wasn't using (a 28-105mm) and some cash for the lens prior to the Korea/Japan trip. It was an excellent investment (and well timed as it turned out).

I now use the 12-24mm predominately in documenting my findings in chemical plants, refineries, power facilities, food manufacturing, as space is always at a premium in those locations. I had previously used an 18-35mm (an excellent lens, BTW. See Thom Hogan's remarks on it), but I was doing a lot of digital stitching for my reports. Not so much any longer. That extra few mm of WA does a lot !

I notice another Cafe person musing on getting rid of their 12-14mm ( https://www.nikoncafe.com//forums/viewtopic.php?t=359 ). You might chat with him if you're seriously interested in the lens (and Keith, if he buys it, you owe me a coffee when next I come to "Klein country" !).



John P.
 
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