Tweaking the Gear


If you have been following my blog, you already know that I’m trying to slowly build a home studio as a retiree hobby.  After enjoying photographs created by bloggers Abe Lincoln and Don Ray, I got interested in photography.  That was about nine years ago.

Back then, I purchased a modest Canon P&S PowerShot A720 IS camera and started taking pictures with zero experience.  A lot of water has flowed under the bridge.  Every passing day, the hobby is getting more and more interesting.  At this moment in time, I don’t think I’ll stop, until the Man upstairs call it quits.

As I mentioned yesterday, I made a purchase at Amazon of several photography accessories which I think will embellish my pictures.  It won’t happen at once, as if touched by a magic wand.  I know it will take practice, lots of practice.  Somebody once wrote that “success is 5 percent inspiration and 95 percent perspiration”.  I agree.

Okay, time to get to the point.  One of the items I recently purchased, was a white shoot-through diffusing umbrella.  The official name of the product is “Westcott 2001 43-inch optical white satin collapsible umbrella” which can be had at Amazon for $20.50.

The umbrella is easy to use and easy to carry wherever you need them.  Reflects abundant light.  Easy to assemble/disassemble, compact and easy to store.  The “optical white satin” has a nice sheen to it and provides a pleasant soft diffused light.  It collapses very small.  Is light and very compact when collapsed—15 inches long.

umbrella1
Photograph by ©Omar Upegui R.

The umbrella has a thick and thin round center tube, also known as shaft, which spun around the umbrella adapter easily. This hexagon-shaped shaft prevents the umbrella from spinning and also fits just right in my Bownens mount mentioned in yesterday’s blog post.  The shaft also has three stages for shortening and lengthening the tube.

The satin white fabric has a shiny coat inside, which is great for bouncing or softening the light shooting through.  Unfortunately it is NOT 43 inches by any meaningful way.  Mine is 38 inches from one edge to opposite edge of the umbrella.  I was deeply disappointed by this inaccurate description in Amazon’s ad.

Furthermore, my umbrella came with dark black stains on eight different places, mainly where the eight rods are located.  I thought it was dust, but it wasn’t.  I think the stains came from a black thin bag that’s inside a thick clear plastic pouch.  Placed a claim and the seller (Kellards) promised a replacement free of charge.  So far haven’t heard anything from them.  Plan to keep on pressing for an answer.  Buying online is not always a gorgeous patch of flowers.

umbrella2
Photograph by ©Omar Upegui R.

Good Day!

Recommended Reading:  Umbrella 101 for Beginners: Bare Flash vs Shoot Thru vs Reflective Umbrellas by Aaron Ottis

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