Wednesday, July 16, 2014

For Sale - Think Tank backpack and Nikon lenses

My life has changed a lot in the last 2 years, so my photography has changed too. My cameras now share space in my bag with diapers and sippy-cups. So it is time to finally downsize.

All items will eventually go to e-bay if they are not sold here. Paypal only (unless I know you, a check will do because I know where you live), Free shipping to continental US. e-mail me if you are interested, first come first served.

Think Tank Airport Ultralight Backpack-

Now on e-nay:

I purchased this backpack new, but have found myself only using it a couple times a year. It is designed to be as light as possible and fit all international carry-on size requirements, and will fit under the seat in front of you on most planes. I thought it was small the first time I saw it compared to the much larger, "full sized" bags we have at work, but this always fits the right amount of gear and is never too heavy (like the full sized ones...ironic).

There are some scuffs/dirt spots; no tears, and the zippers are still in great condition.
(Gear not included...I had to borrow more just to show how much it can hold.)

What is it:
This main part of the bag measures 12in x 7in x 18in (plus straps)
Includes the original seam sealed rain cover.
The outside pocket will hold a 15in Mac Book Pro, in a sleeve.
It has ergonomic padded shoulder straps, a removable belt, business card slot, several grab handles on the outside, plenty of removable dividers, two inner clear zippered compartments, and a heavy duty lockable zipper.
It was also designed to fit into hard rolling carry-on cases, the Pelican 1510 Carry on Case or the Hardigg Storm Case iM2500, making it perfect for harder travel.
For those that do not know, Think Tank has become one of the more respected camera bag manufacturers. A brand catering to the pro that uses, and often abuses, their gear because they view it as a tool. Therefore build quality and design are top notch.
This particular backpack was the forerunner to the current Airport Essentials Backpack (

Nikon 80-200mm f2.8 AF-S IF ED lens with Kirk tripod collar - 

Now on e-bay:

This is a lens that always produces beautiful images…but I no longer carry it everywhere because of its monstrous size...and I had to make room for juggling a two-year old. Therefore it has seen less use, and I am finally (read reluctantly) letting it go.

Since I have purchased this lens, it has seen a lot of use. But it is also a pro lens, so it was designed to handle daily abuse in war zones.  See the photos for its cosmetic condition (small scuffs/scratches, paint marks on the lens hood), but see the sample images to see that it doesn't affect images quality because the glass is fungus, scratch, and smudge free. Every once in a while I see a large dust spot inside the front element, but have never seen it in my photos. Doing a little research I found that this happens a lot, and a little shaking/banging can dislodge it and push it to the side of the element.
At some point, the focus ring got a little grit in it, but I never notice this because it only shows up when you manually focus and doesn't slow down the Auto Focus. Other than those cosmetic issues, It performs amazingly. It has always had a UV filter on it, as well as a back cap when not in use. For that last couple years, it has mostly sat on a shelf.

What is it:
Includes front and back caps, hood, 2 tripod collars (see below), case, and instructions. 
Nikon has included many letters in the name of this lens, the most important are the AF-S, a silent wave auto focus system. This means faster and more accurate focusing. More importantly is that it will focus with all of Nikon's current DSLR’s, even the new consumer cameras that only take electronic focusing lenses like the D40, D60, and the D3X00, and D5X00 series cameras! 
Nikon and Canon have produced many versions of this focal length because of its versatility, this version has been replaced twice now...the newest is a $2500 lenses! The great thing about investing in glass is that it doesn't degrade in quality or need to be replaced like cameras. 
This focal range is one of the most versatile; great for landscapes, portraits, candids, and whatever else you throw at it. Many people want this lens because it brings far things closer; while it does do this, it also creates a perspective that is very clean by allowing you to exclude clutter, as well as by compressing your image into the frame. 


Free Kirk Tripod Collar:
When this lens was released, many praised its quality, with the exception of the tripod collar. Thankfully it is removable and I purchased an aftermarket one that is rock solid. No more shake when using a tripod. This, and the original, are included free! A $170 value. See it here:
(Camera and tripod not included)

Nikon 60mm f2.8 micro lens -

On e-bay here:

Nikon is known for their macro lenses. (They interchange the terms Macro and Micro, think of it as making small things big.) Even though this is an older model, it still performs just as good as the new ones...but with better build quality.

Not much to say, this lens is in great condition, I have to look really hard to see any marks at all on the outer body. I enhanced the photos to see what your eyes have a hard time seeing. Glass is without fog, dist, or marks.

What is it:
 Nikon used to call their closeup lenses Micro lenses, now they are Macro. This enables you to get very close to your subjects, rendering them life size (1:1 ratio) on a full frame camera sensor, or 1.5 times life size on a crop camera's sensor. In other words: Awesome! This is a very fun lens, and it is easy to get lost for hours in one little crop of flowers, or leaves, or fabric, or or electronics, or glitter, get the idea. It has made me appreciate the details, and learn to see them.
The downside to this lens (compared to the new AF-S versions) is that the focus is slow and will not work on newer, consumer cameras like the D40, D60, and the D3X00, and D5X00 series cameras. But I will be honest, I never use auto focus with macro photography. This gives the precision one needs, and what I do on both this lens and my 105mm macro. (See my article here about macro photography
They don't make lenses like this anymore, with an all metal outer body.

Questions? e-mail me:

Thanks for looking!

Saturday, May 3, 2014

one last hurrah - walk and lightpainting

My wife and I are expecting our second child this week, so I was allowed to head out on one last hurrah the other night. Steve, Adam and I walked around waiting for the sun to set, then we attempted to do a little light painting. Every time I try this, I think I need to do it more.


Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Honduras - the video that was shot

On a previous post (look here) I talked about a video shoot that took me to Honduras. Well, now that InterVarsity's Staff Conference is over, I can share the video with you. I was lucky to be the backup video producer for this shoot, the original producer was not able to travel at the time Will was going to be able to host us. Therefore, I traveled to Honduras solo, but was well taken care of by Will and his team of sales associates as they visited the factory. Back state side, a coworker (who was originally supposed to go) edited the following video.

For more info on Tegu, visit their website,and by a couple blocks...we did and they are a lot of fun.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

lot of travel lately

I have been in a lot of airports lately. This morning was particularly beautiful in Reagan International. And with a longer than normal layover in Chicago, I just kept shooting.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Johnson Family Portraits

To be honest, I am not sure if the first time I photographed the Johnson's (see that here) was easier than the most recent two years later....because now the boys (and adults) know me and I have less of the "be good for the strange man with camera" behavior. Now it is more of the "poke Matt with a stick to make the kids smile" trick.

But it is fun photographing good friends, knowing the lives and stories I am trying to capture, and knowing how fast they have grown up, makes it feel like an intimate family excursion. Proof that I am "part of the family" came when a passerby offered to take our picture so that I could be in the photo too.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

just returned from honduras

more to come, but here is some of me, and then the photos I took at the same time...

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

stretching myself simpler

Over the weekend, I headed out to a familiar wooded area to stretch myself.  I took a lens that I usually love to hate, and decided on pushing myself into a creative corner of simpler compositions.  I walked into the woods at a very slow and contemplative pace for 45 minutes, but when I ran out it only took 3. It was an interesting exercise that surprised me in the results.