The Faces of Penguicon 2011

I wanted to test out my shiny new camera this weekend, so I took it with me to Penguicon and proceeded to snap a few hundred pictures with it, with a particular emphasis on portraiture. Basically I wanted to see how it handled. As it turns out, it does very well, as I think this Flickr set of Penguicon Portraits will show. It did help that the hotel lobby in which almost of the pictures were taken is, as someone else noted, “a natural lightbox”; there were windows on the ceiling which let in a lot of natural light and generally speaking the entire lobby area was well lit and congenial to snapping informal head shots.

For those interested in the nerdy details, I used a Nikon D5100 with the kit lens and set on auto (I wanted to see how good the auto setting was) and without flash. The pictures are jpegs rather than raw format with minimal post-processing in Photoshop. If I had saw raw format I would have had somewhat better control of the pictures in Photoshop, but even just as jpegs the camera gave me a lot to work with. In all I’m pretty impressed with the D5100 for snapping candids and quick pictures of people. I’ll fiddle with it more, of course.

The picture set linked to above is largely of people I know, plus a few other folks whom I snapped (generally with their knowledge). There are several, however, whose names I don’t know (and in at least a few cases, people whose names I should know, or used to know, but which I am now blanking on because I suck). So if you’re one of those unnamed people, or know who those unnamed people, please leave a comment at the Flickr set so I update with accurate information. Thanks.

As for the convention: Well, I spent it hanging out with friends at the bar, so I had fun at the very least. It does seem like everyone else had a pretty good time too. I’ll be back next year, not in the least because I’ll be one of the Guests of Honor. But I’d be back even if I wasn’t.

10 Comments on “The Faces of Penguicon 2011”

  1. Nice shots…what is Krissy reading? The cover look familiar but I can’t place it.

  2. Well, frak! I was there and wanted to talk to you and never saw you around. Of course, I pulled 12 hours in the Ops booth and another 16 volunteering, so the fault was not yours. Shoot. I wanted to give you a copy of Fuzzy Ergo Sum (you may have seen the poster near ops.) Will you be at the World Steampunk Expo next month? I’ll be there on 27th, 29th and 30th. On the 28th I will be attending the Irregulars Muster for H. Beam Piper fans. Hope to see you there!

  3. John, I saw you at the con. I spotted you Friday evening as you were going into one of the main ballrooms. The fact that you had your new camera helped me recognize you. I followed you in to thank you. You went in and out and I became interested in the event. I lost you and never saw you again. But thanks for letting me know about this con. It was my first and I had a great time. It won’t be my last.

  4. John, as a photoilliterate person (is that as annoying for photo folks as when people claim to be technology illiterate?) that plans to buy his amateur photographer wife a shiny new camera soon — when you say “kit lens”, can you be more specific? Is this just the 18-55mm lens that comes with most of the package deals I find with the D5100?

    I ask because she saw your photos and was impressed, especially considering they were taken with the automatic setting. That means her bumbling husband could take a photo in her absence that might be passable.


  5. Have you considered picking up Adobe Lightroom for your new toy? If you’re willing to give in to the Lightroom way, its photo handling and organizing capabilities (especially for RAW processing) are unmatched.

    @Shawn Yes, a lens that comes with the package deals is commonly called a “kit lens”.

  6. Has Krissy considered a stint in the acting world? She’d make a good “questionable, but all-knowing mentor for the flawed-but-noble hero(ine)”. Sort of a female Bruce Campbell. The smirk is great; you can’t pose that.

    Jack Tingle

  7. #1: You’re right…the book does look familiar. The white text in the book’s upper left corner looks like a list of authors, so it MAY be an anthology.

    Ack! It’s just another way Whatever drives one insane!

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