Olympus E-PL5 vs. Olympus E-PM2, a surprise

Marilyn Armstrong:

Another case of great minds thinking alike, albeit for slightly different reasons.

Update: The price on the E-PM2 dropped today by $75 … so I bought it. I just wish I could have gotten it with a lens I don’t already have twice over. But it cost the same for the camera body without any lens or with the lens, so okay. Now I have three 14-42mm Olympus lenses. Anyone need an extra? Swap?

New Update (December 27, 2013): The price dropped again a couple of days ago, down to an average of $365 on Amazon (body only, no lens) and other places, too … depending (bizarrely) on what color you pick. Weird colors can be $100 cheaper, as little as $275 and honestly, I don’t give a rat’s ass what color the camera is outside as like as it takes gorgeous pictures!!

Originally posted on atmtx photo blog:

Olympus E-PM2

Olympus E-PM2

My blog readers know that I’m in search for yet another Olympus camera (like I didn’t have enough already?) I’m buying another micro 4/3 camera before the end of the year, but which one? In my post In limbo between the Olympus OM-D and E-PL5 I went back and forth between the Pen and the OM-D. I’ve decide to go “lower end” and opt for the E-PL5 — the smaller size and the familiar Pen interface won out over the high-end OM-D. But, when I actually played with the new Pens, I became unsure.

The E-PL5 is better built than the previous E-PL3. It feels like a skinnier version of the high-end E-P3 with a similar build quality. Design wise, however, I still prefer the E-P3. The chunky flip-up LCD screen dominates the back — so much so that I found it uncomfortable to hold. I had a…

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I looked out my window. The bright yellow trees have turned bronze, the scarlet maples are bare. But there, in the middle of the brown of November is one, bright tree — a Japanese Maple given to me years ago by my cousin. It has been lovingly nurtured for over a decade. Here is the last shining tree of Autumn 2013. The last tree standing.





Such a popular prompt.This is the third time in less than a year I find myself responding to it. It’s a no-brainer, fortunately, lending itself easily to words and pictures.

I love the dawn, the sun rising yellow and pink. The line from the Odyssey (Homer) always springs to mind:

“After we were clear of the river Oceanus, and had got out into the open sea, we went on till we reached the Aeaean island where there is dawn and sunrise as in other places. We then drew our ship on to the sands and got out of her on to the shore, where we went to sleep and waited till day should break.Then, when the child of morning, rosy-fingered Dawn, appeared…” The reference to “rosy-fingered dawn” appears in the Odyssey several times and it has stuck in my head, so much so that whenever I see a pink streaked dawn sky, I think of it.


It is indeed hard to get oneself up and out when bedtime was just a couple of hours before. I’m not a night owl. I’m a day-and-night owl, someone who wakes up early but has a lot of trouble sleeping at night so I see the sunrise more often than I’d like. There are days when those birds singing are the final straw. All night tossing and turning and waking and trying to relax, relax, breathe and go back to sleep … and then the birds start their early chorus.

Sometimes the dogs chime in and everything is singing I have to laugh. No matter how tired I am, the singing dog pack and the birdsong out on the porch is like a great movie gone entirely wrong. What can I do but smile and brew some coffee?

On those rare occasions when I drag my weary carcass up and out, camera in hand, I’m glad because the world is a-borning and I am there to make it mine.



Weekly Photo Challenge: BLUE SKY, BLUE SEA – BLUE HUE IS ME

The sky bright blue, accented with puffy white clouds and the water, taking its cue from the sky, felt that blueness was an appropriate choice for this day in autumn along the Atlantic coast.

The people came and went and oddly, though they could not have said way, felt the blueness too. Jackets and jeans, bags and bottles in shades of blue, all blue and bright with sun on a crisply beautiful day in Hyannisport.

Weekly Photo Challenge: THE HUE OF ME IS SCARLET

Scarlet Tree So. Yarmouth

The color is scarlet, the feeling is excitement. The mood is up and the sky is full of hope. The hue of me is bright and bold.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Infinity – GRAND CANYON

Infinite Grand Canyon

Talk about infinity. Arizona’s Grand Canyon is overwhelming, almost incomprehensible in its vastness and seems to go on forever. Visually, it does.


Weekly Photo Challenge: Infinite Boston

Into the infinite distance ... Boston from Mission Hill and across Fenway Park.

Into the infinite distance … Boston from Mission Hill and across Fenway Park.

And it goes on forever. The city, the sky, life. Infinity.


And as we head off on vacation, there are so many things to remember …

shopping list



Not Los Angeles. Nor old movie stars full of Botox to make them “look younger” (really makes them look like corpses, but I digress). It could be a metaphor of that West Coast city and many of its inhabitants.

Margaret O'Brian by Three

I’m talking about My World. A small, form-fitting world populated by beautifully dressed, if slightly dusty hard plastic people. Mostly girls, a few men and boys. The girls are my favorites because they take me back in time and spirit as effectively as any wormhole in the fabric of time. When I hold one of my dolls, I’m young again …and it is a time and place when my best friends were dolls.

You must not blame the girls for their plasticity. They are not plastic by choice, after all. I wonder, had they been given their druthers, if they would have preferred living flesh. I don’t know. As it is, they have stayed young long after time would have ravaged their beauty. You never know. So many “real” people choose to emulate my plastic pals, perhaps they are the model for women of the future as the world drifts to them. They become iconic images of past and future.

I have an awful lot of dolls. When I start taking pictures of them, I inevitably find myself concentrating on those I can most easily access, the dolls on easy-to-reach shelves. Others are high above my head, often crowded together and difficult to photograph in situ.

My collection is mostly hard plastic dolls from the 1950s. Some are from the 1960s and a very few from later, the early 1970s. I also have quite a few older composition dolls. These were made of sawdust, glue and paint and typically come from the 1930s and early 1940s.

It’s interesting to see how the concept of dolls changes through the decades. It’s a reflection of how girls and childhood are viewed by society as a whole. From the grownup, almost motherly dolls of the teens and twenties, to all the pretty long-haired girl dolls who dominated the industry from the 1940s through the early 1960s — you can tell what people thought of girls by the dolls with which they played.

Suddenly, in the mid 1960s, dolls looked either as if they’d taken bad acid or became fashion dolls resembling Hollywood stars. The dolls industry has always been in love with Hollywood, of course. Shirley Temple, Margaret O’Brien, Sonja Henie were just a few of many dolls based on movie stars. Book characters have been a long time favorites too as well as historical characters. Today’s American Girl dolls come with books of their own and the tradition continues.

The trend to fashion dolls moved from Hollywood to the ubiquitous Barbie … probably the longest lasting fad in doll history. I don’t understand it having never liked Barbie. Maybe it’s an age thing. By the time Barbie appeared, my doll-playing days were over and my collecting days were long in the future.

Today’s dolls range from very weird to traditional, soft-bodied girl dolls. Despite endless attempts to turn dolls electronic, dolls have stubbornly resisted. They have remained toys requiring imagination, not batteries. Everything else appears to have fallen to some version of computerization, but dolls are still silent little plastic people to whom little girls can talk when no one else will listen.

Are they spooky, my silent friends? Not to me. To me they are merely peaceful and quiet, lacking any mechanism for speech. Yet they are also eloquent. They watch. They see. All the decades through which they have survived are captured in their oddly expressive glass eyes. Their sweet, sometimes sad smiles.

Do dolls covet and yearn? I think they want only to be cuddled by some little girl. A little girl enchanted by having finally found a friend who listens and never interrupt. And will in stillness dwell.

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Saturated – Green Waters


River water is not blue, unless it’s reflecting the sky. In shade, it is deep green, sometimes almost brown. Dark and rich, green with life, flowers, plants, fish.