Petteri's Pontifications
My musings about photography, mostly.
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Petteri's Pontifications

What's New From The Prime Junta

New blog... about watches

I'm exploring a new hobby -- tinkering with wristwatches. Since it's probably pretty boring to anyone not interested in watches, I put the stuff related to that in a new blog.

Prime Junta was here (and is elsewhere now)

I haven't been writing here lately. The reason is that I've run out of things to say about photography, although I do still continue to take pictures. In case you're wondering what I'm up to nowadays, you can track my doings on my blog at or (a little) on Twitter, -- I'll see you there, perhaps.

A Diamond In The Rough: The Sigma DP1

Been a while since I last pontificated on photography, over here anyway. Still, here are my field notes on a pretty interesting camera -- the Sigma DP1. In case you've been living under a rock lately, it's a compact camera with an APS-C sized Foveon X3F sensor and a fixed-focal-length 28/4.0 equivalent lens. I also did a few comparison shots against my EOS-5D. Check out the article to see how the DP1 fared!

The Canon EF 24/2.8

Well, I finally got around to writing up another instalment in the Ugly Duckling series. This one is about the 24/2.8. I really like this lens, although I don't shoot this wide very often. Read the article for a more detailed write-up with examples galore.

The Canon EF 24/2.8

Well, I finally got around to writing up another instalment in the Ugly Duckling series. This one is about the 24/2.8. I really like this lens, although I don't shoot this wide very often. Read the article for a more detailed write-up with examples galore.

Leica CL: The Volkskamera

I recently bought something I've always sort of wanted but never could bring myself to do: a Leica rangefinder camera. This one is the Volksleica -- the Japanese-built CL from between 1973 and 1976. If you're interested in my experiences in going back to an all-manual film camera, after several years of all-automatic digital cameras, read on...

Simulating Films with Photoshop Curves

I've been messing around with trying to simulate the look of various types of films using Photoshop curves. Re-inventing the wheel, in other words. If you're interested in my wheel, read on...

Ugly Ducklings: the early EF primes

Canon introduced a unique line of prime lenses between 1987 and 1989 when it marketed the EOS system. It has fallen between the cracks a bit since then, with the introduction of newer, fancier lenses. However, I have developed a real liking for the series and have collected most of it. This is a part of a series of articles on the series, which reviews each lens individually and compares it against its siblings.

Crystal Vodka: the Canon EF 135/2.8 Soft Focus

My usual type of rambling, semi-systematic review of an old and slightly unusual lens: Canon's 135/2.8 Soft Focus. I dubbed it Crystal Vodka because it's clear and smooth but can make the world go all swimmy if you're not careful.

Missy and Jekku

Life goes on, and Ira has successors: Missy the cat and Jekku the border terrier just joined our pack. We're only just getting to know each other, but things are looking up.

Ira, 22.10.1993 - 3.10.2006

Our friend of (almost) 13 years, Ira the soft-coated wheaten terrier, left for greener pastures today. We miss her.

So what the hell happened?

So, now that it's over (for now), what the hell was it anyway? I reactivated my political blog for some rambling about the topic. To find out all about how (not) to fight wars against countries whose capitals start with a B, read on...


Well, it's over, for now. If only they won't fuck it up. If you want to know what I think should be done next, it's on this page...

Stop the madness!

As some of you may know, I have a connection to Lebanon. When the current crisis blew up, I resolved to keep my photography-related writing separate from my politics. I can't do that any more. Please take a moment to read the short message I felt I had to write about it before continuing to whatever it is you came here for.

The Pixel Sweeper Revisited

I rewrote my March, 2005 article about the Pixel Sweeper -- that is, how to select and prepare a brush for cleaning your digital SLR, and how to go about the actual cleaning. I've learned a quite a lot since writing the original article, including stuff about how dust behaves and what's actually going on in the cleaning process. The new article reflects this. It also presents a cleaning technique that's both simpler, less risky, and (in my experience) more effective than the one originally described.

Little Big Camera: the Fujifilm Finepix F30

Field notes about the Fujifilm Finepix F30 -- a few niggles aside, an amazing amount of camera in a very small package.

And Now, For Something Completely Different

Since I don't have anything in particular to say about photography at the moment, I figured that another pursuit of mine, cycling, could make a nice change of pace. This is a photoessay, and does contain a few observations about combining cycling and photography. Enjoy!

Information Security for the Digital Photographer

A second essay about computers and digital photography: what information security means for the digital photographer, and in particular how to set up a backup regimen that's as simple as possible yet provides pretty good protection against losing your photos..

Building A Photo Workstation

Been a while since the last update to the site: thanks to everyone who asked what had happened; it's nice to be missed. ;-) This article is only tangentially about photography, but it does concern something quite important to any digital photographer: the computer to edit the stuff on. I'm not an expert system-builder by any means, but I have been messing with computers for a quite a while, and have put together a few boxes. I also just upgraded mine. This inspired me to write down some thoughts about what makes for a good photography workstation and whether or not, and how, to build one.

Tripods 101: Which one to buy? How much to pay?

Tripods are less exciting than lenses. I certainly don't enjoy them anywhere near as much as lenses or cameras. However, a bad tripod is pretty annoying to use, while a big tripod is annoying to carry. I've made a few mistakes in my choices, but have learned something in the process of buying and using them. Perhaps this article will help someone avoid making the same ones...

Raw Shooter Premium and Color Engine reviewed

I updated (well, more like rewrote) my field report of Raw Shooter Premium, with some thoughts about Color Engine, as well as a quite a few pictures. It's not perfect (but then, what is, on this mortal orb?) but I like it a lot. Read on if interested...

New Profiles for Raw Shooter Premium

Well, well, well. I only wrote my mini-review of Raw Shooter Premium two weeks ago, pleading for better color profiles, and here they are -- Pixmantec has announced the Color Engine for RSP... and it looks like Magne Nilsen of Etcetera made them. Fast work, guys. Can't wait to try it. ;-)

Raw Shooter Premium mini-review

A mini-review of Raw Shooter Premium. No pictures yet; I hope to be able to add some when I feel like it.

5D Versus 20D Wide Angle Shootout

Comparison shots and analysis of the EOS-5D with the popular EF 17-40/4.0L ultra-wide zoom, pitted against the EOS-20D with the EF-S 10-22/3.5-4.5 USM, by Rom Prakash at

On Perceiving Brands

Some rumination and self-examination about brand biases; how they happen, and what they mean. With pictures. Based on a discussion at DPReview, as is the next one.

Why I Diss L Lenses

A clarification on my (perceived) bias against the Canon professional "L" series of lenses. Hey, I did own one once, so I'm entitled to it.

Canon EF 24/2.8 vs. Canon EF 35/2.0

Some pixel-peeper crops of comparison shots I made, pitting the EF 24/2.8 against the 35/2.0, with the 50/1.8 Mk I watching from the sidelines. With a short analysis.

To Full Frame or Not To Full Frame?

My thoughts on the relative merits of APS-C and full-frame, and the issues involved in transitioning from the one to the other. With pictures.