Sydney Orquiz XV

We had the opportunity to shoot this beautiful XV this past July of 2017. Isn't she beautiful? Thank you so much for the trust you guys put on me, enjoy your photos.

Here are some photos from Sydney Orquiz.

DJI PHANTOM 4 REVIEW

FULL DJI PHANTOM 4 REVIEW

DJI Phantom 4

DJI Phantom 4

I remember the day I saw a drone flying around me a few years ago and I knew I had to get one soon! Let me start telling you my experience with them and what I think think about them. Keep in mind that this is my opinion and only my opinion. I've had the opportunity to fly different types of drones and after owning this Phantom 4 for about 7 months now I believe it's time to do a review . I honestly would consider this, one of the most coolest inventions in the last few years and now being available for the enthusiast and film makers at such a low price its almost a no brainer. The motors that spin the propellers are supersonic! They spin the props at ridiculous speeds!! The sharp video and photos that you get from this cameras is really great quality as well. Okay, I'm not gonna lie, I'm in love with this thing! When I was younger I wanted to be a commercial pilot and since a very young age I built a passion towards airplanes and flying. I started classes for some time to become a pilot but life had a different plan for me (which by the way I love!). So being able to be in the sky (virtually) for me is incredible.

My DJI Phantom 4 @ flight

My DJI Phantom 4 @ flight

This is a review but I do have recommendations and the first one would be that this is not a TOY! This is something that if not used properly could potentially become a dangerous object in the sky that could kill people. When I used to take private pilot classes I remember that before we could take off we needed to make a flight plan that had to be approved before and then spend at least 40 minutes inspecting the plane and performing a check list before you could be in the air. I feel like the drone is much like an aircraft that shares the same space as real planes and therefor you should have a plan before each flight. You should check weather, make a plan of where you are going to be flying, how long, how high you want to be at and if you are using to film something you should definitely have a shot list. You should use it with a purpose and not just fly it for no reason.. I'm going to be breaking down this review into sections. I got an excellent deal when I bought my Phantom 4 through the amazing people at AMAZON and bought my drone for $999 that included 3 batteries, sd card, charger hub to charge all three batteries and of course the phantom itself with the case, controller and props, here is the link: 

https://goo.gl/tuEN84

BATTERY LIFE:

Batteries seem to last about 20 to 25 minutes while flying it in GPS MODE, about 12-17 minutes when flying it in SPORT MODE and about 26-28 minutes when flying it in COMPASS mode which disengage the GPS. Overall Im happy with the battery life and have no complains.

MODES:

GPS MODE: This is by far the most user friendly mode to fly the drone in, it records and saves the gps coordinates from where the aircraft took off and allows you to control the aircraft smoothly. I definitely recommend this mode if you are just starting out and have never flown a drone before.

SPORT MODE: This mode is insanely FAST! be careful when flying in this mode as the aircraft can reach high speeds of up to 50-60 MPH making this a death weapon if using it the wrong way.   When flying it in SPORT mode be sure to be in an open field and gain a bit of altitude before engaging this mode on. Keep in mind that while in SPORT mode the active sensors stop working and the GPS is disengaged as well so be careful with going to far or hitting something with it. The controls become extremely sensitive and makes it almost impossible to film something while keeping smooth pans and tilts, it's definitely a cool mode for those enthusiast trying to race drones or just have fun.

COMPASS MODE:

In my opinion this mode makes no sense to me at all or at least i haven’t found it useful. It disengages the gps and the sensors as well as the compass. So if the wind is blowing to one direction that means the drone will fly away if you don’t keep an eye on it, the controls are super sensitive and the drone can fly at really high speeds as well.

SENSORS:

The sensors definitely come in handy if you are just a starting out and need assistance flying this thing but honestly in my opinion I never seem to be relying on this feature as it doesn’t help me grab better footage. Having the sensors on the front is also non sense since you mostly need it in the back or on the sides like the phantom 4 pro, don't get me wrong is a cool feature to have but for the money I don't find it useful.

IMAGE QUALITY:

Image quality is decent but not the greatest in my opinion, it shoots 4k at 24 and 30 fps and full HD 1080P at 24, 30, 60 and 120 FPS at 720P and its a 12.4 Mega pixel camera but something to keep in mind is the sensor size in the camera which is really small(1/2.3 cmos) making it grainy and almost unusable at ISO 800. The codec in which this camera records is also H.264 which is very compressed file at 60 Mbps and 4 bit camera does not allow for good color correction even in DLOG which is the flattest profile the camera has. If image quality is your main concern then I would definitely hold on and purchase the DJI Phantom 4 PRO which has a bigger sensor in the camera improving the camera by almost 30% which is HUGE! 

Panorama I stitched in Photoshop of Oklahoma City Downtown using noise removal tools in Post  

Panorama I stitched in Photoshop of Oklahoma City Downtown using noise removal tools in Post  

PROFILE MODES:

This drone does offer DLOG but honestly find it useless because of the bit rate that this drone is recording in. As soon as you try and color correct the colors get muddy and becomes so noisy and useless that I don't recommend shooting in DLOG. I find myself shooting in CINESTYLE with -2 sharpness and -2 saturation and -2 contrast and then I add that in post if necessary.

Would I recommend this drone?

The answer is yes, if you are looking for a drone that is fast and your main goal is speed then yes, if your main concern is video quality then the answer is NO. This drone just doesn’t offer the image quality as the phantom 4 pro and honestly there is barely any difference between the 4 and the 3.  If image quality is your main concern then go with the phantom 4 PRO. If you are on a budget or have never owned a drone then I recommend the Phantom 3 for sure simply because there is very little difference between the two in my opinion and you don't need those sensors to fly and learn how to properly operate drones. Here is the link to the Phantom 3:

https://goo.gl/ocyZzZ

Phantom 3 Standard $399

Phantom 3 Standard $399

If you are in the market for a drone and want really good image quality I would recommend that you hold on buying this aircraft, simply because the Phantom 4 Pro has a way better camera and image quality. If you are on a budget or this is your first drone then The Phantom 3 is for you, for $400 you could buy the phantom 3 which gives almost the same image quality as this one. It has less features but overall you could save $500 or even get TWO DRONES for the prices of one.

Check out this video I made shot in 4K @ 24f using DLOG and a bit of color correction and look at the image quality.

We will be reviewing the DJI Phantom 3, the Mavic Pro as well as the Phantom 4 Pro in the next week. Please subscribe to our mailing list to receive new updates and don't forget to subscribe to our youtube channel.

Renzo Mazzini 

Our Favorite Lenses & Cameras

Okay, Ive been meaning to write this BLOG for a while now but I've been finding myself extremely busy shooting and mastering my craft. I finally took some time to sit down and go over my entire bag so that I can list my favorite lenses, cameras & also the reasons why I use the equipment that I use. If you follow me on Facebook or Instagram you'll soon find out that I am a Canon shooter. I get a lot of questions regarding why I use Canon and not other brands such as Nikon or Sony. When I started my business a few years back, I had the opportunity to test Nikon and Sony before getting into Canon gear, I must say that Nikon and Sony are amazing brands as well, I personally did not like the Menu system of the Nikon & the plastic feel to their cameras but as far as quality and glass goes, Nikon is amazing. As far as Sony goes, I love their technology and their ISO performance but I don't get used to the mirror less system yet and prefer the mirror mechanism. I really believe Sony is amazing for video making because of their ISO performance and also considering the weight of their cameras. As most of you guys know I am a photographer but also do some video work and I truly love the flexibility I get with the Canon Systems.


5D MK III

When It comes to cameras, the 5D MK III is my choice for cameras. It is my workhorse and my primary choice. I am a single camera user, meaning I like to shoot with one camera at all times instead of having two cameras on my shoulders. Angela, my wife & also second photographer also uses another 5D MK III as second shooter. We simply love the build quality of the camera, the FULL frame is a MUST if you are serious about your work, specially in photography, the ISO performance is great on this camera, the AUTO FOCUS system is also phenomenal.

EOS 70D

We also own two 70'ds that we primarily use for our video production side & also for back ups in case one of our cameras failed during a shoot.

I love the AUTO FOCUS system that this cameras provide, specially for Video production and also come in handy when you need the advantage of the APS-C Crop factor to get closer to your subjects.


Canon 16-35mm 2.8 II

We really don't use this lens as much as we'd like to use it simply because we are often shooting portraiture and our style is a bit more on the lifestyle side. Although this is a great lens for ultra-wide shots when you want to get those "epic" shots incorporating landscape or ultra-wide shots on the church. We do use this lens quite often when we are photographing the reception during dance hour as we like to shoot from inside the crowd and this lens allows us to do that. Be careful placing your subjects on the sides though, as this lens will give you tons of distortion. 
Whenever we travel though, this is one of my favorite lens, simply because its great for landscapes as well as astro photography.

Canon 100mm 2.8L Macro IS

This is my newest lens and I am SO in love with it. Did you see that I capitalized SO? That’s high school talk for so, but, like, really big. I owned a 100 Macro (non IS) and while it did me well, I definitely struggled with focus while shooting the wedding rings. I can’t tell you how frustrating it was to be shooting (on a time crunch) and I couldn’t get the darn lens to focus. Anyway, the 100 Macro IS is the complete antithesis to its predecessor. I’ve been shooting with it for four weddings and it has yet to do me wrong. I’ve used it to shoot the wedding dress, wedding rings, hand-written vows, glass details…and so much more. This lens is also my favorite lens when doing Head Shots and studio portraits simply because it a sharp lens and it allows me to get close to my subjects if I need to.

Sigma 85mm 1.4

This is one of our favorite lens to use for portraits, specially when we need to shoot with a shallow depth of field or we have low light inside a church. The focal length is perfect for portraiture.

It’s ability to give a photo journalistic feel is something I love during prep photos, as well as bride and groom portraits. I especially love using this lens when the bride is getting ready on the other side of the room and I want to give her space to breathe. I simply use this lens to get a up close feel without encroaching on her space. In like manner, I use the 85mm during bride and groom portraits to give an intimate feel to a photo. When I use this lens at f/1.4, it locks onto the subject and I have yet to find a lens that produces better bokeh.

Canon 70-200 2.8 IS

If I actually was to choose one of my favorite lens of all time, I believe this one would be on my list. I absolutely LOVE this lens. This lens is on my camera 70% of the time, I use it for outside portraits, couples, engagements, landscapes, etc. This is the one lens I believe is universally needed by a wedding photographer. Even if you have to rent it, do it! I believe wedding photographers should be as out-of-the-way as possible during the ceremony (how many horror stories have we heard of wedding photographers standing at the altar with the bride and groom?!) and this zoom lens allows me to capture up close moments yet stay out of the way. I use this lens for the majority of the ceremony–sprinkling the use the 24mm, 1.4 for a wide shot and 85mm, 1.2 for an aisle portrait using the widest aperture focusing on one subject at once–and it’s solid.

Canon 50mm 1.4

These little baby is insane. It's the first lens I recommend to portrait photographers since it isamazing at what it does. When I first decided to incorporate prime lenses into my collection, I started with this lens. I prefer to stay within the f/2.0-f/2.5 range when shooting 50mm, 1.4 unless I actually need the aperture wide open for light purposes. If you’re considering using fixed (non-zoom) lenses, this is a great starter for less than $400!!

Canon 580 EX II Flash

Here’s a little story about flash: You get what you pay for. The end.
Okay, not really, but if you’re the type of person who learns from mistakes, learn from mine. When I first started, I was strapped for cash and made short-term decisions. My first flash was the Yongnuo YN 560and I shot with it for a few weddings before I realized it wasn’t powerful enough for what I needed it for, it would be so inconsistent because it would fire whenever it wanted to and the color temperature was never the same. A few months after having it it stopped working just like that while I was in a shoot and I was forced to upgrade to the Canon 580 Ex II.

We now own 4 of these babies and we also have a few extra cheap manual flashes that we mainly use for lighting the reception are with OFF CAMERA FLASH.

Renzo & Angela

 

Finding your Purpose

“If you can’t figure out your purpose, figure out your passion. For your passion will lead you right into your purpose”

Have you ever felt lost? Ever felt like your life has no meaning or you are stuck being miserable and unhappy with your life? I was sitting on that same vehicle a few years ago and after literally trying different careers, different environments, different friends it seemed like my life had no direction, no clarity.

I want to encourage you to try and figure out what it is that you were put on this Earth to do. One of the big challenges I had as a stepping stone into finding happiness was getting to know myself. I truly believe that we live in a society of fear, in a society where we are thought to be like others, to spend too much time around people and getting influenced by what others say or think about us. 

I remember seeing everyone else do so good, everyone getting happier while I was stuck in the unknown. That's when my transformation began. I understood that in order for me to find what I was good at and what made me happy I needed to spend more time alone. I'm not going to sit here and write how easy it has been because it hasn't. Figuring out what people I needed to cut away from my life, forcing myself to read books on an everyday basis, being alone was scary at first because I was always so used to being around someone. It was only then when I started discovering new things about myself, new passions, new opportunities for my life. It was only then that I realized who I was, what my passions were and what my purpose was in this world.

In order to grow as a person you must work on your flaws but in order to work on your flaws you must know YOU and must know your purpose.

I believe that GREATNESS is something that we all posses, something that EVERYONE is born with but somehow we loose our own vision because we got around the wrong people, because maybe we got in a relationship way to early in life. Do you know why most couples that get married very early in life will most likely end up broken up or getting a divorce? The most accurate answer is that they were so young that they didn't know who they were. Those people rely on their partners to make them happy because they don't know what happiness is! and because the other person isn't happy either then things end up bad.

Having equilibrium in life is something that I continue to practice on an everyday basis and sometimes its challenging. It's a challenge to deal with everyday problems, it's challenging not to distract from your ultimate goal in life and your final destination but ultimately its only up to YOU to find your light, your passion and your why?

It's only when you spend the time alone, when you read books, when you cut away those negative influences, when you discover your why and you are willing to fail and fail and keep working towards your why that you separate your self from others and start experimenting a better life, its only then when you start attracting better people who think like you in your life, its only then when you start to attract that positive energy within you, that energy that is so contagious that most people would want to hang around you.

I believe that we are who we choose to be. Nobody is going to come and save you. You've got to save yourself. Nobody is going to give you anything. You've got to go out and fight for it. Nobody knows what you truly want except you, and nobody will be as sorry as you if you don't get it. So don't give up on your dreams!

I want to encourage you to work on yourself every single day, to wake up feeling blessed and wonderful to go out and pursuit your dreams, your purpose and your why without caring what other say or think.

Renzo & Angela