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Monday, 18 March 2013


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Amazing how ragged the Dead were in the early days, and the vocals... I guess they have a certain charm which they never lost, lol.

My favorite comet picture so far.

For those into video (and YouTube)

You comments had me concerned that I had possibly spent a wee too much on the Sigma 35 1.4, instead of the Nikkor 28 - but after looking over the last week of shooting, I have to say I'm still really, really happy. The 28 is a great lens, but for those not wanting quite so wide the Sigma is great, albeit pricier, option.(And if you ever so desire to test one, hit me up. I'm sufficiently blown away at the performance of a Sigma lens that I'd be happy to part with it for a week to share the amazement:)

And thank you for the link to Nixon - how did I not know about this guy???(The bane of the self-educated:)

@Tom Kwas: Actually, if you do a search on Hollywood Distagon you'll find plenty of info regarding these lenses.

[Howard, the point here is that the search hits you'll get are all recent. I think what has happened is that one RECENT reviewer claimed that the lens was called the "Hollywood 28" back when it was new and current, and a bunch of other Internet writers have picked up that ball and run with it. But what I'm saying, and what Tom is seconding, is that we never heard anyone actually use that nickname back then. It certainly wasn't common.

If you find a vintage reference to Dr. Glatzel's Distagon being called the "Hollywood 28" or the "Hollywood Distagon," let me know. --Mike]

Can't find anything on the Hollywood 28 either. Did find a long lens, the Indianapolis 500, and a super wide angle, the Chicago 7.

Perhaps the 28mm Hollywood meme resides with Ming Thein.



"In fact, the earlier Contax/ Yashica mount version of the [Zeiss] lens is known as the ‘Hollywood Distagon’ for its huge popularity amongst filmmakers for use in indoor scenes..."

I subscribe to his iPad app and he seems like a very factual kind of guy.

It's interesting that the phrase "Hollywood 28" (with the leading uppercase) does appear in Google Book if you look at the Ngrams search starting in 1943 and petering out in the mid-1970s or so.


But it's not evidence for the lens.

"Hollywood 28" was the postal code in mailing addresses ("313 Taft Bldg., Hollywood at Vine, Hollywood 28, Calif"). The ZIP today is 90028. The USPS introduced postal codes in 1943.

Someone didn't misunderstand "Hollywood 28" in a printed document at some point and thought it refered to a lens?

"...I'm going to make a WAG and say that this comet will be better documented than any in history so far..."

Completely agree! The days of comet photographs being the realm of the few are over.

I've been shooting photos of Comet PanSTARRS using the same lens I used for Comet Hale-Bopp in 1997 -- an old manual focus Nikon 80-200mm/f4.

Comet images here: http://www.dblanchard.net/blog/


Hmm, can't legally use a picture of the "Heismann Trophy" . Maybe you can find one of the Heisman Trophy to use instead. Were you a fan of Joe Theismann, perhaps?

If you're into the GD on archive.org do a search for Charlie Miller- he's taken the Eaton tapes and cleaned them up- there are some real gems over the years.

Thanks for the Grateful Dead link. I am, and forever will be, a Deadhead who was born too late.

I think you would be fine if you showed a creative commons or public domain picture of the Heisman Trophy.


Your computer problems are solved? So, do you have a (for you) bulletproof backup system in place? Have you tested it?

[Yes--now doubled from what it was--and we sure did test it! We tested it by using it--erasing my hard drive and restoring my data from the backup drive. It worked a charm. I do admit to some anxiety in the process, though. --Mike]

Haha. Not more than a week ago I've posted very similar thing as Landingfield, although not the very best quality.


I didn't have any idea of his blog. :)

However my blog is in polish, so probably not many of you will be able to read it. ;)

BTW, the sharpest Nikon 28mm I ever owned, was the 3.5! Yes, there I've said it, the 3.5! I had a copy in the 70's that was razor sharp and had an amazing amount of image "pop", before multi-coating...like I said before, not much for a 28mm guy, but used this extensively on construction site photos for slide shows!

Further regarding the tree at Big Sur (on 17 Mile Drive). It is trademarked as Mike points out. And you may take pictures of it for your own purpose, but you are prevented from using it commercially without licensing the use of it (the tree) in your own photo.

Curiously, many buildings are trademarked as well and may not legally be used without the building owner's permission, though I've never heard of this claim being used in a civil suit.


Well heck, this fellow is a lawyer, and discusses the tree specifically here:



Saw my first GD concert at the Family Dog circa 1969, "under the influence." Changed my life forever. Thanks for the link, Mike.

Dear Patrick and others,

Trademarks are not like patents or copyrights. For one thing, they do not have to involve any creativity whatsoever. For another, they are highly specific and limited in their scope: they're intended to protect your representation of your business and to keep others from unjustly enriching themselves from that reputation, but they don't extend beyond that.

Buildings do indeed get trademarked. A photograph of that building you make, even used for commercial purposes, does not per se infringe on that trademark:

"Pictures of buildings do not violate trademark - Rock & Roll Hall of Fame & Museum v. Gentile Prods., 134 F.3d 749 (6th Cir. Ohio 1998)"


Similarly, my photograph of this building:


does not infringe on any of Transamerica's trademarks.

The issue is whether you're operating in their realm of business or duplicating a specific representation that they're using as a trademark. Apple has trademarks on the word “Apple” and various logos of apples with bites taken out of them. But Apple music has a trademark of their own. Both of them have had to engage in extensive legal work over the years to define the venues in which each is allowed to operate with their respective trademarks. Those scopes are limited. I could start a restaurant called “Eve's Garden” with a picture of an apple with a bite taken out of it on the sign, and there would be no trademark infringement. There's no possibility of confusion with Apple's business, and there's no unjust enrichment. I better not, though, try that logo with a software or musc company!

A home windows company can safely call itself AAA Windows. But, they're likely to hear from attorneys if they're making computer products… or replacing automobile windows.

The way you can run afoul of trademark is if your photograph very closely matches one that they are using as a trademark to represent their business. That rarely happens but it's possible. As the R&R ruling points out, the trademark holder has to be using a specific representation as a trademark. In other words, it's not really different from a logo, it just happens to be a photograph.

That's not to say there may not be other rights and restrictions. People have property rights associated with private buildings. Just because you don't violate a trademark doesn't mean you can use your photograph of that building any way you want, for example in certain kinds of advertising situations. It's just not a trademark issue. By the same token, as was pointed out in the article you linked to, if you're photographing the Lone Cypress from the owner's private property, they can contractually limit what you may do with photographs you make on their property. But if you photograph it from a publicly accessible vantage point, they can't restrict your usage… so long as it doesn't directly infringe upon their business.

pax \ Ctein
[ Please excuse any word-salad. MacSpeech in training! ]
-- Ctein's Online Gallery http://ctein.com 
-- Digital Restorations http://photo-repair.com 

Certainly around the Web allows for a broad range of interesting topics upon which to comment.

Regarding sharp prime lenses before the "proliferation of zoom", probably the sharpest lens I've ever used was not a small, wide prime, but the incomparable Canon 200mm/1.8L. Unbelievable bokeh, too.

Regarding copyright, your post is very informative and helpful; would that others would read it. I and a number of my pro motorsports shooting friends have had numerous issues when an advertiser/sponsor snags an "editorial photo" from a racing web site that displays their logo on a racing vehicle, and then uses it in their own advertising. Only to act very indignantly, and often, belligerently, when contacted by the photographer seeking to collect a commercial use licensing fee for their using his photograph to market their product.

"It was a TL;DR for me"

Mike, what does this mean? Just curious...
Oh, and thanks for Peter Turley's link. great stuff.

["too long; didn't read." (Google's your friend for such things.) --Mike]

Yes, very clear, and thank you for the elaboration. Just another example of why I find TOP useful, helpful, and interesting.

"...That lens [Nikkor 28mm ƒ/2.8 AIS] is one of the high points of Nikon lens design and manufacture...]

I own both the current 28mm f/2.8 AF and the old 28mm f/2.8 AIS mentioned above. I've compared them using the lens wide open for astro-photography and the older lens is definitely better (i.e., much less coma in the corners) Plus, it's easy to get focus at infinity since it has a hard stop. Love that lens!


I sold my 28/2.8 AIS Nikkor (at a profit) to help pay for my X100. I don't have much use for a lens of that spec on APS-C, but it's one of the few I occasionally miss. It helps that mine was in great condition. Does anyone still construct lenses as nicely? If I ever went Nikon FX I'd consider getting another.

In the YMMV dept: If you photograph a Le Corbusier chair you may not have the right to use that image commercially (in France). I haven't heard how the appeal went / is going, but the here's last year's news: http://www.bjp-online.com/british-journal-of-photography/news/2140613/getty-images-fights-copyright-infringement-ruling-french-court

Dear Ault,

Never hurts to remind people that, unless the author here explicitly says otherwise, any statements about the law or acceptable practice apply ONLY in the USA. The law and custom in other countries may not conform.

pax / Ctein

Here's a strange one on copyright (don't ever think about possibly doing a review of GoPro's cameras!) - http://bit.ly/ZwZeti

The Lone Cypress Tree isn't at Big Sur, it's at Pebble Beach, a VERY different sort of place


and the tree is trademarked presumably to prevent this sort of thing

which looks darn similar to the Pebble Beach logo

which would incur the wrath of Clint Eastwood and Condoleezza Rice.

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