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About cdub

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    Nashville, TN
  1. Do you use photoshop at all for editing? I've read a lot from Pros that say the only reason to shoot RAW is if you ever plan on doing anything to the size of a billboard, which then you're even limited to your megapixels. Their tip is to shoot JPG at the finest level, and if you're concerned about doing larger prints later, save it out in TIFF before you do anything, as it's a 'lossless' format. I only have a 1GB Compact Flash Ultra II and am able to store about 600 on the highest JPG setting. Another reason I stick with JPG when traveling. JPG works by compressing files and in areas of like colors/ tones, actually throws out some pixels to help make the file size smaller. Continued saving and reworking continually degrades the photo by just a little bit. I never shoot RAW unless I think it's going to be an outstanding shot that I hope to try and do something with down the road (poster size, etc) due to the large space constraints on media (both card and hard drive). Even then, I typically still work JPG and then save out as TIFF as I don't think of it while I'm running around cities. I also typically download all images and before I do anything to them, burn them to CD for storage where I can get them back if needed or if someone needs it in a TIFF format. I'm guessing I have a little more flexibility in that I'm using Photoshop for editing and I'm not familiar with the ability of the programs you're using. For the shooters with the questions, I primarily shoot aperture priority during the day and shutter priority in low light. Aperture gives more control for artistic type shooting when you want it, blurring the background, and middle of the road apertures (f10, f11, depending on your aperture range) are sometimes considered the sweetspot and are said to give the best tone/ color. I rarely change the ISO, especially when I have a tripod with me, keeping it on the lowest setting (200 ISO for the D70, only drawback of the camera I've found). Increasing the ISO leads to slightly grainier prints the higher you go. It is a help in low light situations where you want to handhold and not rely on a tripod. Here's a great book that gives a lot of basics, much of which was hit on in above posts on aperture, shutter, Manual, and ISO, but it gives photo examples to go along with what he's talking about. It's worth picking up, several in my office have borrowed it and eventually bought their own to have. Understanding Exposure by Bryan Peterson
  2. What do you think of the Rebel digital bodies? I've felt one or two and thought they feel pretty weak. I'd definitely hate to drop one. My boss has the 30D, I believe, and I used it for some shots on a project we were working on together. Seemed very nice and the color quality with no enhancement was quite good. Since we're adding up equipment, I have the following: Nikon D70 18-70mm 1:3.5-4.5G ED (kit lens, but I have no complaints other than not being in the 300mm range, always want what we can't have. damn salary of an LA!) SB600 flash (Nikon speedlights are fantastic, just wish I had better control at shooting varying apertures with the flash. I'm not a fan of algebra to take a simple group photo unless I put it on 'P' mode. Bogen/ Manfrotto tripod-pistol grip ball head to the side, love the panning action. I've heard the vertical grips are a bit top heavy and can contribute to tripods tipping. What monopod do you have? I've seen a cool hiking pole by Leki that doubles as a tripod and has a small 3-legged system pop out at the base. Seems like it would give a little added stability, especially when hiking and needing light gear.
  3. You'll like the D80. Of course that's depending on what you're planning. A partner of mine in my website venture uses it and we noticed a difference right off between the quality of that vs. the D70, which we both have. Ken Rockwell swears by it, especially when setting your color settings to Vivid. I've done that to my D70 and noticed a difference, though I still enhance through Photoshop and a couple of plugins for PS. Thanks for some of the info on lenses, Neo. I'm hoping to start searching for some to purchase in the coming months and appreciate the info. Right now, I'm shooting with the kit 18-70, but would love to up to a 300mm range for people photos. Is the 300mm you have fixed or zoom? I've also heard what you were describing about Canon, that they'll tweak the lens mounts and if you upgrade to a new body, all your old lenses are pretty much worthless. I've thrown an older (probably 70's or 80's) Nikon 300mm fixed on and it worked like a charm. If only I could steal it from my family member that has it.
  4. Thought I'd share a few photos I'd taken back in the summer. I rarely check the Charleston thread, so my apologies for breaking the 'Photo of the Day' topic. This has to be one of my favorite cities. Period. There's such an intimacy about a city of this scale and the detailing in the architecture/ neighborhoods seems to always give something new, no matter how many times you've seen an area. Anyway, hope you enjoy. Broad Street Tradd or Church Street St. Philips Waterfront Park Ravenal Bridge
  5. cdub

    Signature Tower

    I was just throwing out a number for the percentage, but I'm probably in the ballpark. I'm also not saying mid-rise is better for its view. Not sure where you took that from. Rather, it's enhancement of the urban fabric and the excitement it can provide at street level is in my opinion what makes it a far superior product.
  6. cdub

    Signature Tower

    I guess we need to qualify sold out. 100% sold out with 50% sold to investors is not 100% sold out. Look again at Tampa or Miami or any other that has had huge condo development. They oversold to investors, now the investors can't move their units. These units are primarily sold on view, just look at their marketing and then tell me you wouldn't be upset to be saddled with a unit looking at a stone wall less than 10' away. I'm betting there's a lot of people that weren't expecting that. One other question I've had, are developers using the numbers for the downtown study and saying that means all high-rise. Or are they using the numbers, saying I want as big of a piece as fast as I can, and building higher and higher? Where does the rich, urban fabric that we all think is vital for downtown when you've got a 50 story here, 4 blocks away another 50 story, and if patterns keep going they way they are rumored now, we won't have any units available for mid-rise/ low-rise in the downtown core other than conversions. While on the topic of rumors, I've heard quite a few units in the Viridian were bought by wealthy individuals for a weekend retreat or stumbling home pad. Does that contribute numbers needed for retail/ services?
  7. cdub

    Signature Tower

    Sorry, but unless you've got a couple of mil to spend or some really rich friends, most of us will never get the chance. As far as what has been previously discussed, it's all residential. I could be wrong. If this so called 'glut' actually does happen even though most think it won't, where will the remaining retail come from to truly support a neighborhood? If you tap out the mixed use market too early, other opportunities for retail to come in will be close to nil. Unless, of course they build their own buildings. The problem with these mega-residential towers are they only offer a few opportunities for retail/ service oriented business and if we've got this many people downtown, no more mixed use development happening because the residential market is saturated, where do these other services go? Seems like we're going about it all ass-backwards. So much for a vision for SoBro, we're not going to need one now with all these rumors swallowing everything up. We'll get a real test for the demand downtown/ high-rise once Viridian really goes up for sale. I imagine half will sell, the other half facing L&C will be a tougher one.
  8. Thought I would bring the discussion of LRT/ BRT back to the Transit thread. Found an interesting blog discussing the Twin Cities transit system. Twin City Transit I think the interesting point is we should be thinking of how to incorporate both systems. I feel the LRT model should be used on the major corridors leading into and out of downtown. The BRT mode would be great for connecting the 'spokes' of the wheel, thinking of Blakemore/31st to connect West End and Hillsboro as one location. Here's another interesting article from Ottawa. Ottawa BRT Of course it all boils down to what side of the fence you're on and who's funding the studies. I'm sure many out there can argue for BRT equally because of cost, but permanence is a major factor contributing to development along LRT corridors. Yeah, with BRT, you have some stations and dedicated lanes, but nothing a streetscape overhaul couldn't replace. Once you lay the lines for LRT, you've shown you're committed to Mass Transit and to a specific area. Take for instance the Gulch. The city showed the investment in the overall streetscape of the area and look how developers have responded. Not necessarily an argument for or against LRT/BRT, but shows one instance in which the cities investment has had a great outcome. I'd be curious to see the total investment and how long increased property taxes would take to pay that off.
  9. I'm not sure downtown is big enough to warrant the expense of a subway. Let's face it, you can walk from 2nd Ave to the Gulch in 10 minutes. This could change over time, but the LRT seems to be the best fit in our existing urban fabric, not to mention the most economical and most flexible in terms of loading/unloading stops. All the corridors leading into downtown could easily accommodate losing a lane or two, though at first there'd be a lot of P.O'd drivers(until they realized they would no longer need to drive). In thinking of the downtown as a hub, I've struggled with the idea of stations. Do we build one large station (similar with the bus station to be built) in one location? Or do we have a series of smaller stations that serve as turnaround points for each line? There of course would probably need to be a kind of bypass station where you could hit other lines and skip downtown if you wanted to head from Gallatin to Cool Springs. Others smarter than I have probably thought this through. The thing I would most like to see from the development of LRT is how development WILL follow it. The old saying 'Build it and they will come' will hold true. We just need the right people in the right places to push this thing forward. A system probably won't be profitable for the first few years as you try and convince people to change their mindsets in regard to transit. As a first phase of seeing the LRT, I'd like to see it implemented in areas that will benefit the most. These areas seem to be those along Charlotte/ Gallatin-Dickerson Pikes. Put these in areas that will provide the most good for people who don't have cars in the first place. This will help build ridership numbers in areas where people currently use mass transit the most. Building first for the rich to have an amusement ride of sorts doesn't seem to provide the most good.
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