Monday, August 27, 2012

The Tokina 11-16 F/2.8 Lens

I'll start off this great blog adventure with a kind of review of the Tokina 11-16mm  F/2.8 wide angle lens that I just received in the mail a few days ago.  First off, I did a lot of homework on this lens before I finally pulled the trigger and decided to get one for myself.  The reviews on the Tokina were outstanding!!  Everywhere I looked, people had nothing but positive comments on this lens. Reviews on everything from quality of construction, sharpness of image and overall price tag of the lens beat out every company that sells a similar product.  Even when compared to Nikon's 12-24mm f/2.8 (a very similar lens) the Tokina dominated reviews every time producing a sharper image, and a slightly wider angle shot for about $1400 less than the Nikon! ( to see the side to side comparison shots this review has some great examples

Needless to say, it was a no brainer that the Tokina was a must have lens for my arsenal if I every wanted to take those tack sharp wide angle night time photos that I've been trying (unsucessfully) to get with my 35mm f/1.8 lens.

Not to say that Nikon's 35mm isn't a great lens -The 35mm f/1.8 lens is still one of my favorite lenses. For shooting stars with a closer foreground, nothing even comes close to comparing with this beautiful (and very inexpensive!) lens.  It's just not ideal for super wide angle shots is all.

Anyway - The Tokina 11-16mm gets two thumbs up in my book.  I love this lens and can tell I'm going to have A LOT of fun with it.  Here are some photos I've taken with it so far-

This is the longmont museum across the street from my place.  It was a prime subject for the maiden voyage of the new lens. 

My first big photo adventure with the new lens up in Rocky Mountain National Park.  I camped out from about 9pm to 1am at Bear Lake taking landscape photos of the beautiful views in the moonlight of the nearly full moon.  Of course as with all great photo adventures, I have to do a self portrait shot at the end of the night.  The above photo is me just before the moon set for the night over the horizon. 

Above and Below are my two first attempts at doing star trails!  This lens is perfect for getting star trails over a landscape. One of the deciding factors that finally made me buy this lens was I discovered that one of my favorite night time photographers, Dan Newton (Dan Newton's Blog) used the Tokina 11-16 to capture some of my favorite starscape photos of all time.  He definitely is inspiration and one of the greatest when it comes to the art of the night time landscape. 

That's it for now - Feel free to check out all of these shots and more at my website

- Mike L. 

Test Post

It has recently come to my attention that it would be a good idea to create a blog for my photography and my photo adventures in addition to my website and facebook. The more exposure the better!  Plus it couldn't hurt to start practicing my writing skills again, and have a place to jot down ideas and what not related to photography.  Anywho, this just a test post.

Welcome to my blog!