Tagged: Pentax 18 – 135mm WR Lens

Rainy Morning

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I took this through my window yesterday morning.  I don’t like cold, wet, windy, rainy days, but I do like pictures like this.  I realize that I am probably in the minority but I am attracted to images like this for some unknown reason.  Maybe the reason is that pictures like this don’t drag my thoughts in a particular direction.  It encourages me to daydream about whatever.  It also has the requisite black and subtle colors that I like.

Another thing that the picture did was to remind me that it is time to get the Pentax K-3 and WR lenses back out.  I used it for this picture.  I have mostly left the K-3 in the drawer while I learned how to best use the Ricoh GR.  No single camera will do everything so it is nice to have multiple cameras.  The K-3 and my lenses, in addition to being weather resistant, have that Pentax fine-focus capability that enables me to hand focus the image if I don’t like the way the camera focused.  I used that function on this picture to pull the focus back away from the distant scene moving it closer to a focus on the rain drops on the window.  I like to use that function sometimes to pull everything slightly out of focus to create a dreamy image.

Mary Ann Furnace Trail

On Sunday we took a walk along part of the Mary Ann Furnace Trail in Codorus Park.  It was our only real walk in the woods this fall.  I wasn’t sure of what to expect relative to photography, but I didn’t expect much since the woods are young and full of green briers.

I also wasn’t sure of what to expect from my back but I managed.  I took my K-3 with the 18 – 135 mm lens and ended up taking just a few pictures with 82% of them at an effective 28 mm focal length.  I could have easily gotten by with a smaller pocket camera with a fixed effective 28 mm lens.

Early in Downtown Hanover on a Rainy Saturday

I have been working on extending my photography.  Ideally I would like to extend it towards new subjects, but short of that I have been working on extending the times I photograph.  That is why you have been seeing a few more pictures taken before the sun rises.  I took the above pictures in downtown Hanover, PA in the rain and in the early morning darkness.

I have gotten to the point where I am comfortable with my camera settings and the image quality for this type of light; but I still need to work on finding suitable compositions.  I also would like to “get closer” and create some more expressionistic or abstract images in this type of light.  This will require occasionally getting out of the car and walking about in the dark and wet and cold in the off hours.  So far, while working on camera settings, etc. I have mostly taken the pictures from inside the car.

I liked the images of the people going through the market door; therefore, I am thinking of getting more similar pictures and creating a series of them.

All was Quiet

It was 49 degrees F. and raining lightly; i.e., an ideal time for me to try to make some pictures in a style that is growing on me.  I went out this morning between 6 and 7 am to work on my technique, etc.  An added benefit was that it was quiet with no one else out where I live.  The pool and the exercise rooms were empty, but the lights were on.  I guess that these pictures are telling me that the rest of the people living here have more sense that I and were still snug in their beds.

For those who are curious, I used my weather resistant Pentax K-3 with the 18 – 135 mm lens.  All of the pictures were taken at an ISO of 6400 at apertures of 4.5 or 5.6; i.e., wide open for this lens at the focal lengths I used.  I was also using a -1 dialed in for exposures and took all the images in raw format and then tweaked the WB and noise reduction in development.


Several days ago I was looking for some images where I could capture some semi-abstract details like I showed a few posts back and thus I had my K-3 with the 18 – 135 mm lens racked all the way out to 135 mm while taking a walk.  My problem was I wasn’t seeing anything due to the light.  Did you ever take a walk with a camera when the light was bright, but flat?  That is how it was when I took the above pictures.  I wasn’t seeing anything interesting since the light wasn’t good, in my opinion.  I was thinking about not even trying to take any pictures, but then I thought that I would try to do something different from what I normally do.  I turned the exposure down and made the pictures deliberately darker.  Then when I loaded them into LR I pulled the white point up while leaving the exposure as taken.  The above are the result.  I realize that I won’t always be able to find what I most prefer but that I can live with a hodgepodge of pictures and subjects if I just handle them right.

Hands at Work


I haven’t been taking many pictures for my blog since I haven’t seen anything different; but I have taken more pictures of people doing crafts, events, etc. here within Homewood.  The above was taken indoors when I was getting more pictures for my railroader’s project.  They are still building a new portable display which should be completed before the end of the year … including a slide show I hope to make.

Lately I have run out of new ideas for photographing here close to home.  One idea I will hopefully get around to is a project “hands at work” since I can use them in my blog and hands have always been an interest of mine.  I have no shortage of events and activities to photograph here but I am limited in what I can use in my blog due to privacy concerns.

I am also trying to broaden my reading to trigger ideas for future writing and photography.  That is a tough one to pursue since there is often a long lead time between when I start reading different books and then have them result in new ideas for images.  In the meanwhile, I’ll just try to keep my eyes open.

Cool & Rainy

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I took a short walk in between rain showers this morning and took the above picture of our resident Heron.  I didn’t have my longest lens so I didn’t get as good a picture as I might have.  If you notice, the size of this picture is smaller than I normally use in my blog thus this image won’t print well; but it looks OK on the screen.

I wasn’t looking to get any particular pictures since I was just walking for my knees and trying a different arrangement for carrying my camera with the 18 – 135 mm lens and lens hood.  I used a wrist strap and carried the camera in a Domke F-5XB bag.  That arrangement is compact and worked well for me and I will be using it more.  I carried the camera in the bag rather than hanging from a sling strap in case it rained hard.  No use in testing the weather resistance of the camera and lens in a worst case scenario; but I didn’t worry about having rain drops from the trees hitting it while I had the camera in my hand when shooting.

Scenes from Codorus State Park

A group of us from Homewood at Plum Creek took a trip to Codorus PA State Park on 29 Aug 2013 to ride on pontoon boats and to have a picnic afterwards.  I took many pictures of the event but I thought that, for now, in my blog I would only show you a few pictures of some of the scenes within the park.

Longer Focal Length Reach

The above pictures have little to do with what I’m going to say, at least not directly.  It’s just that I love clouds and when I have no other picture to use I go out and photograph some clouds.  Indirectly they have a lot to say about my photography in that I used my Pentax 55 – 300mm lens on my K-5 to take them.

I was shooting a few days ago and I had a problem.  My K-5 would stop focusing.  I turned it on and off and then it would work for a while.  At first I thought that the problem was with the camera but now I’m thinking it was the lens.  I was using the 18 – 135mm lens in good bright light.  I’m not positive it was the lens but I stopped using it and went back to my old standby lens, the 55 – 300mm.  So far I have had no problem with it focusing … even on these clouds, which is something the Fujifilm X-E1 has problems with.

I also thought that I would tell you that I am looking for a longer focal length lens.  I have looked at lenses for the K-5 as well as looked at switching to a Canon or Nikon DSLR if that were necessary.  So far I haven’t come up with an affordable solution.  If anyone has some recommendations let me know.  The least costly approach appears to be acquiring the Sigma 150 – 500mm lens but that isn’t cheap, especially when I add in a better tripod and a gimbals head.

My intentions are to use my Fuji X-E1 for indoors or when I need a more discreet system and I’m around people and when I want a small camera to carry around my neck under my jacket.  That also applies when traveling.  I plan to use the K-5 outdoors for landscape details and wildlife when I need a long lens and/or the ability to focus fast.  My quest now is to decide whether 300mm is long enough and if not, how to extend it.  I have decided that lens extenders won’t work due to low light conditions.