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Thread: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

  1. #1
    Senior Member dchew's Avatar
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    Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    I don't know where this thread will go, but maybe it can be a tool for others to learn. You know, when you are struggling with something and cannot make it work. Then after an agonizing period it hits you: Oh duh!!

    If you have the self-defacing guts to admit yours, tell us!

    So here was mine this morning: Got the Alpa out with the 150 short barrel to fool around and take some garden flower photos. Since they were in the 5-7 foot range, I had the Leica Disto out for measurements. Disto up against the back of the camera with a little correction factor for the sensor location (+0.02 ft). Nothing was coming out sharp! Everything was off, way off.

    Sitting at the computer afterwords I figure out I focused pretty consistently 1 or 2 inches too close. I was really getting upset because on the 150mm at that distance, it is about a 5 degree rotation of the helical. Huge! And I was sure this lens was calibrated before!

    Then it hits me: Hmm; about the same thickness as the Alpa 34mm adapter I had installed on THE BACK of the camera. Making my reference point on the back of the camera oh, just about 34mm too short.
    Dumb-Arse


    Dave

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    ROTFLMAO. Im not without these kinds of error, I just forget them quickly so I forget. LOL
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

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    Senior Member danlindberg's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    I just experienced one of those.....

    The other day I was to photograph a shoe with an exaggerated perspective and low angle of view (the brief).
    So I mounted the Schneider SuperDigitar 28 XL and was thinking going as close as I could.
    I set up everything as I usually do and shot. Black frame!
    I checked over all settings and tried again. Black frame!
    Checked over again, more careful, talking out loud to myself. Black frame.
    Now, I connected the iMac for liveview. All black. Everything seemed to work but all I got was black.....

    It took me over an hour and (more than one bad word) before I realised my newbie mistake.

    I had the rear lens cap on
    Alpa FPS • MAX • TC | Alpagon 32Hr | Helvetar 75 | Schneider 120N | Leaf Aptus II 5 • Leaf Credo 60 | www.danlindberg.com
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    Rear lens cap is a very common one. I've done that myself once or twice.
    Doug Peterson , Digital Transitions | Email
    Dealer for: Phase One, Mamiya Leaf, Arca-Swiss, Cambo, Eizo, Profoto
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    Member JonMo's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    I honestly thought I was the only one not bright enough to remember to remove the back lens cap.

    Thank you for saving a little of my self esteem!

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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    Not recently but all the same a real dumb *** thing to do....

    Just before going to shoot a group of people I decided to clean the then Mamiya 645Pro so it was in tip top shape. Anyone who has shot one of these knows that when you remove the film magazine, the film advance just keeps spinning and the shutter wont fire preventing you from cleaning the inside of the mirror box...... that is unless you engage the multiple exposure lever.

    I return after job all pleased with myself and about an hour later the film shows up on the lightbox with one single frame exposed 10 times............

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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    My most common mistake is taking the CF card out of the IQ to download my shots - and then forgetting to put it back in. Thus for my next attempted shot the DF comes up with "stor db" - and it takes me several moments to figure out what the heck that means!

    Fortunately I always carry several cards but one day I'm going to miss the shot of a lifetime by not having a card already in the back.

    I'm trying to cultivate the habit of putting a new card in as soon as I take one out but I'm a slow learner.

    Bill

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    Member Analog6's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    In the old days of film I used to carfully rewind so a bit stayed sticking out of the cassette. So one time I found I had a whole roll of 36 (it was 35mm) just horrible double exposures. The first time I'd shot long exposure star shots and the second lot were a park opening in bright sunlight. double disaster!
    Odille

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    Senior Member dchew's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    Live view only works half the time on my IQ back. The other half it forgets to manually open the leaf shutter.

    Dave
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    Workshop Member Wayne Fox's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Caulfeild-Browne View Post
    My most common mistake is taking the CF card out of the IQ to download my shots - and then forgetting to put it back in. Thus for my next attempted shot the DF comes up with "stor db" - and it takes me several moments to figure out what the heck that means!

    Fortunately I always carry several cards but one day I'm going to miss the shot of a lifetime by not having a card already in the back.

    I'm trying to cultivate the habit of putting a new card in as soon as I take one out but I'm a slow learner.

    Bill
    I'm afflicted with the same problem. My other problem is when the "stupid" camera won't take a picture, having me do all kinds of things like pull the battery out etc. thinking it has locked up ...

    ... to eventually discover the issue is the card is full.
    wayne
    My gallery

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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    Quote Originally Posted by dchew View Post
    Live view only works half the time on my IQ back. The other half it forgets to manually open the leaf shutter.

    Dave
    Which back Dave?

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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    Yep, I've had a few "Dumb and Dumber" moments:

    Shooting from a balcony in a muggy 100º church, with no fans or lighting. Look through my Contax 645 viewfinder to take some critical shots ... and it's black. Start frantically field stripping the camera to see what the heck is wrong, seems okay, put it back together, still black ... finally discover I had inadvertently flipped the viewfinder dark slide into place while wiping the sweat off the camera and finder ... which I couldn't see in the dark.

    Balcony #2 incident: Shooting a 555ELD and original Kodak ProBack on a tripod. Had the tethered Quantum battery strapped to my waist for mobility. Decided to swap lenses ... turn to reach for the 40mm on the pew and pull the whole rig over ... which promptly tumbles down a flight of marble steps disrupting the wedding I was shooting.

    I occasionally have nightmares involving "Balconies".

    Every time, and I mean EVERY TIME, I walk an elaborate lighting set-up to a remote location, the 8" sync cord from radio transmitter to camera fails. Do I learn? Apparently not. Had it happen on the last shoot again. I had cleaned and formed the tip before leaviong and must have pulled it to hard when removing the conditioner, just enough that it still worked, then didn't after 2 shots. Now I have 5 of them in my pocket ... until the next time when I forget.

    -Marc

  13. #13
    Senior Member KeithL's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    Stupid mistakes that made me laugh?

    Becoming a photographer.

    Hey, it's better than crying about it.
    http://www.keithlaban.co.uk
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    Senior Member Chris Giles's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    I'd been looking forward all week to walk in the yellow rapeseed fields with my dog and P25, arrive, no card in the back, go back to the car, find card, go to take the picture, no battery in the back. That's still at home on charge.

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    Administrator Bob's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    Leica lens cap.
    A lot of 32 second exposures LOL
    -bob

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    Administrator Bob's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    Oh and there is another.
    Leave for a trip with all my batteries left behind.
    Thankfully Dave at CI expressed out some fresh ones and saved my butt.
    -bob

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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    It was stupid for sure, but I didn't laugh about it. I accidentally scratched the sensor of my S2 while cleaning. I couldn't blame anyone but myself and it cost a lot of money to repair.

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    Hmm, let me see, I'm not too proud that I won't admit to:

    Alpa spacer & blurry images - Both with & without btw. i.e. leaving it on when I put on a wide non-SB lens and not putting it on when I put on the longer lenses.

    Rear lens cap - Haven't done it for a quite a while now though. Mainly because I don't put them on any more and use the hood hats to protect the rear or the Alpa plastic cover plate.

    Live view and the manual leaf shutter release - Both not open and still open and wondering why the shutter won't fire.

    Lens cap - I once shot 8 images of a great sunset over Sydney Opera house and the bridge using an XPan and couldn't work out why the exposure recommendation was always > 1sec. Doh! Looked fine in the viewfinder.

    CF Card full and the stubborn IQ/P25+/P40+/Aptus 65 -

    No CF card in the back when trying to shoot -

    Gone out to shoot macros with the DF and left the extension tube and macro lenses back at the hotel - - I did that last weekend actually. Fun shooting miniatures using a Mamiya 210ULD & 300 APO from a very healthy minimum focus distance!

    Attempt to mount the camera on the tripod head and realize that you'd forgotten to put the Arca plate back on and it's sitting at home -

    Out in the field with my Lee filter gear and realized that the filter pouch and/or filter adapter is back in the car -

    Using 77mm filters for all cameras and lenses and realizing that you've left the step up rings in the other bag -

    When my DF & 75-150 & P40+ fell off the tripod and crashed on to a big very solid rock in Sedona - Folks - ALWAYS make sure that your Arca Swiss QR is TIGHT!! That wasn't much of a chuckle I must admit but I got off lucky.

    Like Mark, a small slip with my Aptus 65 when remounting on my Alpa that resulted in the most fragile part of the back finding the least fragile and most pointed part of the Alpa - That wasn't much of a chuckle either but I also got off lucky there too in the end.

    Shooting with a 600VR and D3s with a wimberley mount and forgetting to tighten every control including the head panning knob - I can vouch for the fact that a D3s when swung like a pendulum on the end of a mounted lens is a very hard and heavy club when it whacks you in the side of the head. I decided that I'd only do that ONCE as I figured next time I'd wake up in hospital.

    I know that there are plenty of others that I've conveniently forgotten and no doubt more dumb things that'll happen in the future.

    Now the one I haven't done so far, and a good friend of mine did do this, is go on a road trip, drive 350 miles to get there and find that they've brought everything including the tripod, clothes, work gear for the next week on the road but left the camera bag and all the gear back in the home office. He had to use my Fuji X100 all weekend.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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    Subscriber and Workshop Member MGrayson's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    When picking up a backpack or camera bag, make sure that none of the straps are looped around a tripod leg. I sent a Cambo/IQ160/Schneider setup crashing enthusiastically into the ground... at the feet of the owner... who wasn't me.

    Only cost a tilt/swing mount, but Yech!

    --Matt

    Oh. Wait. The thread says "Make you Laugh." No, no laughing...
    Last edited by MGrayson; 13th May 2012 at 16:23.

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    Senior Member darr's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    I have been guilty of trying to use too light a tripod a few times on outings--I only own 4 (oops 5 now since acquiring Guy's RRS 2 series) Gitzos and three of them are designed for use with 4x5" and larger. Good thing there is a studio stand in the studio or I would probably do a stupid weight and balance test.

    Worst stupid mistake I made was on a wedding shoot years ago that involved a roll of exposed 220 film "rolling down the aisle" between magazine reloads. I was trying to remove the film from the magazine when I dropped it, and of course the paper wrap had not been made. All I could do was stare at the roll unfold with the film exposed.


    I do feel like I am with my people here, as I occasionally look through a black lens with the front lens cap in my hand.
    Last edited by darr; 14th May 2012 at 18:04.
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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    Quote Originally Posted by MGrayson View Post
    When picking up a backpack or camera bag, make sure that none of the straps are looped around a tripod leg. I sent a Cambo/IQ160/Schneider setup crashing enthusiastically into the ground... at the feet of the owner... who wasn't me.

    Only cost a tilt/swing mount, but Yech!

    --Matt

    Oh. Wait. The thread says "Make you Laugh." No, no laughing...
    I cried and it wasn't mine . LOL
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    "tossing" my D700 into the back seat and not noticing its entanglement with my backpack.... Then yanking my backpack from the back seat only to watch the D700 try to fly... It dint. Traumatic lens / body separation. Thank goodness I only had a cheap scouting lens mounted with plastic bayonet or things could have been much worse. Body ok. Lens, not so much.

  23. #23
    Subscriber Member tashley's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    I feel your pain buddy: years ago I arrived at a funeral just as it was about to start. The Wren church was packed (with a Who's Who of the Church of England) so I headed up to the balcony, where I sat quietly, alone. The coffin was borne in to sombre music and placed in front of the altar on a catafalque. Where it rested in silence. Until.

    My mobile phone (novelty ringtone, natch) went off in my coat pocket. Actually, in the lining of my coat, into which it had fallen through the hole in my pocket and from whence it could not be fished. Several hundred heads swivelled towards me.

    Every so often I meet someone at an event and they say, 'weren't you the one who...'



    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Yep, I've had a few "Dumb and Dumber" moments:

    Shooting from a balcony in a muggy 100º church, with no fans or lighting. Look through my Contax 645 viewfinder to take some critical shots ... and it's black. Start frantically field stripping the camera to see what the heck is wrong, seems okay, put it back together, still black ... finally discover I had inadvertently flipped the viewfinder dark slide into place while wiping the sweat off the camera and finder ... which I couldn't see in the dark.

    Balcony #2 incident: Shooting a 555ELD and original Kodak ProBack on a tripod. Had the tethered Quantum battery strapped to my waist for mobility. Decided to swap lenses ... turn to reach for the 40mm on the pew and pull the whole rig over ... which promptly tumbles down a flight of marble steps disrupting the wedding I was shooting.

    I occasionally have nightmares involving "Balconies".

    Every time, and I mean EVERY TIME, I walk an elaborate lighting set-up to a remote location, the 8" sync cord from radio transmitter to camera fails. Do I learn? Apparently not. Had it happen on the last shoot again. I had cleaned and formed the tip before leaviong and must have pulled it to hard when removing the conditioner, just enough that it still worked, then didn't after 2 shots. Now I have 5 of them in my pocket ... until the next time when I forget.

    -Marc
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  24. #24
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    While shooting a room setup for a hospitality client, after increasing the length of my tripod forgetting that TRIpod means three legs and subsequently only fastening two legs. Then watching in sloooooow motion as camera and tripod fall within inches of hitting a chap innocently eating his Christmas lunch.

    Until that day, I'd alway wondered why pros bought 1D bodies over XD bodies.

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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob View Post
    Leica lens cap.
    A lot of 32 second exposures LOL
    -bob
    eheheh been there, done that, wearing the tshirt...

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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    Mistakes from the wedding two days ago. 50mm Lens won't focus at all and then throws up a camera error. Had to reboot to get it working, oh and take my finger away from the focus ring where it had been trapping it from moving .

    Other mistake was shooting half the group shots at f3.5 rather than the f5 I had the strobes set to. Luckily both the DOF and highlight recovery was sufficient...
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    Workshop Member Bryan Stephens's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    On a few occasions, I have inadvertantly bumped the aperature lever while cocking the shutter only to wonder what was happening with my exposures where they were so over exposed.

    After shooting another image without changing anything, I finally figured it out.
    Bryan

    “You don’t take a photograph, you make it.” — Ansel Adams

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    Workshop Member Bryan Stephens's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    Quote Originally Posted by MGrayson View Post
    When picking up a backpack or camera bag, make sure that none of the straps are looped around a tripod leg. I sent a Cambo/IQ160/Schneider setup crashing enthusiastically into the ground... at the feet of the owner... who wasn't me.

    Only cost a tilt/swing mount, but Yech!

    --Matt

    Oh. Wait. The thread says "Make you Laugh." No, no laughing...
    I was about 10 feet away from that and saw the entire thing, and the scene went into slow motion. I dont recall anyone laughing at the time either.
    Bryan

    “You don’t take a photograph, you make it.” — Ansel Adams

  29. #29
    Workshop Member Bryan Stephens's Avatar
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    On a recent trip to Maine, I had climbed to the top of Mosquito Pond Mountain to shoot the view up there. I was in the process of changing lenses, setting one down on my bag, only to hit it with my foot. I watched as it rolled down the side of the hill, and off a 25 foot rock ledge.

    Needless to say, that was the death roll for that lens.
    Bryan

    “You don’t take a photograph, you make it.” — Ansel Adams

  30. #30
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    Re: Stupid mistakes that make you laugh

    So, I had this friend who was having a really problem with his large-format sheet film exposures. He was telling me the ISO was way off--he was overexposing his film by 10 or more stops and still the density was low. We started talking about the problem and we got to loading the film holders. He said he had no problems loading the holders as you just put your index finger on the edge markings and slide it in and then he proceeds to raise his left hand to show me how he does it...
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