Alley in Pisa, Italy

by Lars Kotthoff

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26,292 reputation
243103
bio website grumpyjohns.com
location Toronto, Canada
age 45
visits member for 4 years
seen 51 mins ago

Software architect and developer, currently Director of Architecture at a Canadian software company in Toronto. I use a variety of technologies but at work it's generally C++, HTML, ASP (JScript), Flex, and SVG. For personal stuff, I tend to use PHP, C#, perl, and everything I use at work. :)

I've been designing and developing for well over a decade in the enterprise software market, first with IP billing, now with ticketing (no, not TicketMaster). I'm a classic case of a jack-of-all-trades, but my intuition is good and I pick up programming languages like a sponge picks up water.

I'm a moderator on Photography.SE and I'm an avid amateur photographer and especially enjoy nature and macro photography. I've also started getting into more studio oriented stuff, acquiring some lighting, background stands, and other gadgets for that purpose. My current weapon of choice is the Nikon D800. Check out my website for some of my photography DIY projects, some of which have been featured on the well-known DIY Photography site.

I'm now on 500px and you can see my portfolio that is in dire need of growth...

I'm also a moderator pro-tem on Pets.SE because I have a keen love and interest in animals. Over the years, I've had as companions dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, fish, turtles, and budgies. As a result, I've learned a lot about caring and enjoying, sometimes the hard and sad way.


Apr
23
comment What technique and settings should I use to capture meteor showers?
@rfusca - The technique I linked to is somewhat similar to catching lightening, you point, open the shutter, and try to capture something in passing and so you can use an equatorial mount to keep you on target and eliminate star trails.
Apr
22
comment What white balance settings do I need to capture the cast of a coloured streetlight?
@Henry Jackson - That's my point. You earlier stated that there wasn't really any difference, but there is, raw is non-destructive editing and that's a huge difference.
Apr
22
comment What white balance settings do I need to capture the cast of a coloured streetlight?
@Henry Jackson - Actually, there is a difference between them. Bear in mind that successive edits to JPEG is lossy, so if you shoot JPEG, try to get the white balance correct because changing it will result in data loss on save. If you shoot raw, it doesn't matter, the white balance correction is part of the processing anyways, so the outcome is very flexible without data loss.
Apr
22
comment What white balance settings do I need to capture the cast of a coloured streetlight?
Interesting... I've never tried that on my K-5, I may have to take a look at that. I usually just leave it in auto, since I shoot raw, and then adjust after, but I'd be curious to see what the effect is with this setting.
Apr
21
comment What extension tube options are there for the Pentax system?
You can also come across the bellows set made by Pentax on sites like Craigslist from time to time. I usually end up not buying it and then kicking myself later...
Apr
20
comment Is in-camera high-ISO noise reduction worthwhile?
Depending on the Pentax you're using, turning off long-exposure NR may not be possible (it was not on the K20D and K-7, but is on the K-5). Drove me nuts... I pretty much couldn't wait for the K-5 just to dump this restriction and Pentax would have lost me of that still stayed an issue.
Apr
19
comment Does it give higher quality to shoot in low-res mode in-camera, or to downsize high-res photos later?
I tend to agree and I'm curious how the Canon sRaw works out since it's really about doing this sort of thing as far as I know. I may get a friend of mine to try it out for me.
Apr
19
comment Does a photographer take pictures or make pictures?
@Philip Goh - And what if the cyclist never appeared? That was the difference and, of course, the post is a fairly simplistic look at it since it's not the forum for a doctoral dissertation on the artistic works of famous street photographers. :)
Apr
19
comment What is the 'Diagonal Method' and should I use it instead of 'The Rule of Thirds?'
+1 - well argued. I would note, on the last, that the relationship between music (or poetry) and mathematics is a strong one. That would imply that, perhaps, science and art are not so far apart as many may suppose. I know you're not even remotely suggesting that, I'm just reinforcing the point. :)
Apr
18
comment What is the 'Diagonal Method' and should I use it instead of 'The Rule of Thirds?'
Especially true when you consider that the Mona Lisa has been stolen a few times by cutting it out of the frame leaving open the possibility that it's not the same proportions that it used to be...
Apr
18
comment What is the 'Diagonal Method' and should I use it instead of 'The Rule of Thirds?'
Have a look at this: diagonalmethod.info
Apr
17
comment Are Kata bags worth their price?
It matters very little what I believe when it comes to price. If there is a volume of people willing to pay the price and that volume meets the level desired by the business, then they have priced where they should. This is true for Kata as much as it is for Manolo Blahnik, irrespective of any opinion I may hold on their worth. Now, in the case of Kata, I don't have any direct experience to say anyways, but I thought it worth pointing out that a question of "worth the price" is irrelevant. You save your question with other information.
Apr
16
comment Is there a camera bag with extra space that I use as an airplane carry-on?
@rumtscho - I probably wouldn't want to carry it on long hikes, it is good for travel purposes though and I still use it extensively.
Apr
16
comment Are Kata bags worth their price?
"Everything is worth what its purchaser will pay for it." - Publius Syrius
Apr
15
comment Are there high-class photographers that never use editing software?
I'd personally love to meet the photographer that can produce good results for every single shot. I don't think such a person actually exists, however.
Apr
14
comment Is there an online Encyclopedia of Photographic Methods/Techniques, better than that in Wikipedia?
Hey, give us time, we just got started less than a year ago!
Apr
14
comment Should I shoot underexposed photos?
@mmr - I'm not sold on ETTR either. Matt's post is one reason, I've read this before since I'm a K-5 shooter, but my own experience suggests that as well: grumpyjohns.com/2010/pentax_k-5_and_an_exposure_oops
Apr
13
comment How do I find the right size of filters for a lens?
@Mattia - The job of the polarizer is to absorb certain polarized light so it can't but reduce the amount of light coming through.
Apr
13
comment How do I find the right size of filters for a lens?
It looks like it... Close enough for government work. :)
Apr
12
comment Which piece of equipment is holding me back?
@jrista - For sure... But 10 years down the road when he's using the bazillion megapixel Canon Super D(o everything), those lenses will still be useful. :)