Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Week 22, Day 160, September 30, 2009, Leaves

It wouldn't be fall with out a bunch of leaves.  I really like the range of colors in the fall.  I also really like seeing the photos that many of you have posted for the fall colors in your area.  Each area is unique and has it's own beauty.  Keep posting your photos.

Lessons Learned:
  • I really liked what RuneE said in yesterday comments. "That is the way to do it - look around. If you are in "the mood" you will see things that you did not see yesterday - and maybe not tomorrow."  Yesterday was one of those days where I saw photographs everywhere.  Other days, it's like pulling teeth.  Today was more like pulling teeth, but that's ok.  A couple of good photos a week keeps me going.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/30 sec, Aperture f/4.0, ISO 1600 (It was very cloudy, and getting dark), Focal Length 17 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 36mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, handheld.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Week 22, Day 159, September 29, 2009, Rain Bounce

You may have to click on the image to see this one.  I went to a High School Cross Country Meet and it was cold and began to rain.  This is typical Cross Country Weather.  My older two children ran Cross Country, and I really enjoyed the meets.

As we were waiting for the runners to return, I noticed the rain drops bouncing off the umbrella next to me.  It was a great opportunity for another photo.

Many people were complaining about the weather, but I was finding the new subject of rain stimulating.  I'm enjoying new subjects to photograph.  I can hardly wait for snow.

Lessons Learned:
  • Keep looking, and looking some more.  There's millions of things around us to photograph that are interesting.
  • I used to take photos of the runners when my children were in cross country.  This time I found myself looking at the angles and the backgrounds.  I realized that I have come a long way in the past 5 years.  I cannot imagine what the next 5 years will bring.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/1250, Aperture f/2.8, ISO 400, Focal Length 70 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 113mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, handheld.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Week 22, Day 158, September 28, 2009, Reflection of the Law School, Winner of week 22 in the online viewer poll. Winner for month of September in online viewer poll.

Just before it was time to leave work a very quick storm arrived.  There was thunder, there was lightning, there was wind, there was rain blowing sideways, and then there was sun.  As quickly as it came, it left.  Many of the walkways had a lot of water on them including under the arches at the Cornell University Law School.  The reflections were great, and the stones were starting to dry, and had interesting patterns on them from various degrees of wetness.

I thought it was a great opportunity for photos, and I think making it monochrome helped to bring out the variations in the wetness of the stone.  I hope you enjoy.

Lessons Learned:
  • I used to be concerned about getting my photo for the day when it was raining.  Now, I'm discovering all sorts of possibilities, and look forward to the changes in the weather.
  • It's helpful to have a daughter who is very creative.  She's a Landscape Architect who is living in Maine.  If you live near Portland, and need a great Landscape Architect, she's your person. I asked for her opinion on this daily photo.  It was between this one, and the brick wall that gives me vertigo when I look at the photo.
 Photo details: Exposure time 1/320 sec, Aperture f/5.0, ISO 200, Focal Length 40 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 78mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, handheld.

Winner of week 22 in the online viewer poll. Winner for the month of September in online viewer poll.

This Monochrome concept came from Aileni at The Monochrome Weekly

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Week 22, Day 157, September 27, 2009, Rainy Sunday in the Fall

It's a rainy fall afternoon in Central NY.  It's a good afternoon for a nap, a fire in the pellet stove, and painting some of our empty nest.

It's also an amazing time to take photos of water drops.  I've tried in the past, but the drops were very small.  I think the combination of the dry fall curling leaves (large surface area) and the soaking rain were a great combination for creating larger water drops.

These leaves are from a sumac tree.  They are not a desirable tree, and grow everywhere.  But, in the fall they are incredibly red, and beautiful to look at.

What weeds do you enjoy?

Lessons Learned:
  • A condition that seems to create large water droplets. (See above)
  • I'd really like a nice macro lens.  ($$$$, oh well it's always fun to dream)
Photo details: Exposure time 1/125 sec, Aperture f/4.0, ISO 400 (the wind was blowing the branches so they wouldn't stay still, Focal Length 40 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 65mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, tripod.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Week 22, Day 156, September 26, 2009 Breaking a Tackle

My son's football team played during the day today.  For photography the lighting of a day game is a lot better than the lights of a night game.

My son's team won today, but it was a tough game.  Both teams played very well, and it was a real battle.

I'm amazed in this play.  The player carrying the ball was actually able to break the tackle and continue to run.

Lessons Learned:
  • This lesson was learned after looking at the photos from the game.  Close up photos during daylight hours are really cool.  It's neat to be able to see the players faces in their masks.  I'll try and take more photos like that at the next daytime game.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/800, Aperture f/4.0, ISO 200, Focal Length 120 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 234mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, handheld.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Week 22, Day 155, September 25, 2009, Heron Silhouette

On the way home from work tonight I drove along Forest Home Drive.  It's one of the common running routes that we take during lunch time.  Fall Creek runs along side the road, and I figured I would take some photos of the fall colors on the trees. 

When I arrived I saw a Blue Heron, and decided to photograph the bird instead.  I took several photos, and even took a photo of him catching a fish.  Unfortunately that photo is a little to blurry for my taste.

Instead I share one where the Heron is just flying from one side to the other.  The Heron is even dragging his/her talons on the top of the water.  The sun was still fairly bright, so all I was able to get was the silhouette.  Perhaps when I get good enough with photoshop I can lighten the heron.

Lessons Learned:
  • Be willing to change the subject.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/800, Aperture f/2.8, ISO 100, Focal Length 200 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 323mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, tripod.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Week 21, Day 154, September 24, 2009, Pond with Fall Colors

The colors are still far from peak colors in this area, but they are getting brighter and brighter. 

Here are a few trees near a pond.  I stopped on my way and took these.

Lessons Learned:
  • It is getting dark way to quick.  I'm really going to have to start shooting as I leave my building to come home for the evening.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/25 sec, Aperture f/9.0, ISO 800, Focal Length 40 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 65mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, tripod.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Week 21, Day 153, September 23, 2009, Shelter from the Rain, Winner of Week 21 in Online Viewer Poll

I've been inspired by Rune to look at old buildings in the area.

My neighbor has a huge barn that he has been struggling with.  It needs a lot of work, and he loves the barn.  But, the cost of repairing it is very expensive.  He struggles with does he take it down, or does he keep it.  It's been in the family since his father was a little boy, so it has a lot of meaning to him as well.

One thing that it did do today was to shelter us while it was raining.  It also gave me a great opportunity to take a few photos.  He has promised me if he ever does take it down, he'll give me time for a proper photo shoot.

Lessons Learned:
  • Sometimes when I take photos, it seems like a preliminary photo shoot.  I take a look at different angles, shoot a few shots, and come back and look at them on the computer.  I then can think of other things that I would like to go back and do.  Maybe when I become a better photographer, I can do it all in one sitting. Today really was preliminary.  I didn't use my tripod because there was very limited time.
What old buildings are near you that would make great photos?

Photo details: Exposure time 1/50 sec, Aperture f/4.0, ISO 800, Focal Length 17 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 27mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, hand held.

Winner of week 12 in online viewer poll.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Week 21, Day 152, September 22, 2009, A Little More Color of Fall

Each day there are more changes in the colors of the trees.  I drove down a few of my favorite streets, and took a few photos.  For those of you familiar with Groton NY, Clark Street is a great road.  It travels by the cemetery which is a great place for photography.  The residents don't seem to mind.  Further along the road past Old Stage Road, Clark Street become very windy with many trees lining the road.  I think there will be a lot of future photography shots along this road.

Lessons Learned:
  • People many times mistake me for a surveyor when I'm photographing.  I like to carry cards with me that describe a little about what I'm doing.  I then can hand them to people when they ask.  It's a great conversation starter.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/10 sec, Aperture f/8.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 17 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 28mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, tripod.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Week 21, Day 151, September 21, 2009, Swirls of a Reflection

As I was driving home this evening I was driving on a road I don't normally drive along.  I noticed out one side a small pond near the road.  This pond had a lot of green on the top as some ponds do.  I noticed a lot of interesting swirls.  Probably from a duck or some animal swimming through the green, or maybe small currents running from the springs.  It had an interesting look to it.

I felt kind of odd photographing it, because it was about 200 yards from somebodies house, so I didn't take a lot of time photographing it.  I do like the swirls through the reflections of the trees.  I think this one would be interesting to photograph at different times of the day as the light changes, and trying various camera settings.  Perhaps someday I'll return for another shot.

Lessons Learned:
  • I was surprised at how I felt I was intruding on someone else's land.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/320, Aperture f/5.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 50 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 81mm, Lens Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II, hand held.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Week 21, Day 150, September 20, 2009, Elderberries

As I mentioned in my blog back on August 25th, my father's favorite desert is elderberry pie.  Usually on August 25th my mother pulls the elderberries out of the freezer because they are not ripe yet. (But sometimes they are.)  This year they are now ready.  It's a race between the pickers and the birds.

I really like the color of the little branches that hold the elderberries.  They are very tiny, so this photo is cropped so that you can see the individual berries.

What's your favorite desert?

Lessons Learned:
  • Dark foregrounds and dark backgrounds don't mix well.  I tried some larger bunches of berries, but they had very dark leaves behind them.  They didn't photograph well.
  • I thought I had a great shot of a leaf with the sun illuminating it from the back.  When I look at the photo I have lost the illumination.  I must learn more about this trick.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/8, Aperture f/1.8, ISO 100, Focal Length 50 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 81mm, Lens Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II, tripod.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Week 21, Day 149, September 19, 2009, Feeling Small (Sorry Steve Martin)

Today was the 2nd Annual Iroquois Trails Ultra 100 mile, and 50 mile race.  This race is an incredible test of endurance.  Runners run up and down ski slopes, through trails with roots, and rocks, some roads, and through some of the most beautiful country side in the North East.  The race started at 6:00 AM this morning, and the 100 mile runners are still running.  Usually it takes the top athletes a little under 24 hours to complete it.

I must admit, I was feeling a little small today.  I've run several marathons, and a couple of very long relays including a 6 person 200 mile run.  But, I'm not ready to touch this race yet.

Another reason that I was feeling small, is that I was asked by the organizers to photograph the event.  I said sure.  I do sports photography.  This race presented many challenges for me as a photographer and once again I was feeling a little small:
  •  I woke up at 4:00 AM so that I could be at the top of the ski slope when the runners started at 6:00 am at the bottom.  The organizer wanted some photos of people running up the ski slope with their headlamps in the dark.  Photographing head lamps in the dark is a challenge.  I rely a lot on autofocus.  Autofocus doesn't work very well in the dark.  I had to quickly switch to manual focus. 
  • The next photo that the organizer wanted was as they ascend the ski slope up a few slopes.  I had some time between when they passed me, and when they would arrive at the ascent.  The challenge was in trying to capture the runners and the bright sun at the same time.  At the time, I wasn't happy with how the balance was happening.  The photos turned out fairly well despite the conditions.
  •  I then ran down the ski slope to get into my car and get to the next photography spot.  I missed the top runners, but did get some great photos of the runners running by a barn with the ski slopes in the background
  • The next stop was an aid station.  I was able to arrive there in time for the top runners, and took the photo above.  I really like this photo.  I think the smallness of the runner is representative of the vastness of the race.  The runner is a big part, but the 100 mile trail is huge.  I think this represents well the David of the runner vs the Goliath of the race.
  • After this I went to 3 spots in the woods for some trail shots.
  • Because I was concerned about the sunrise photos, I wanted to go back to the top of the ski slope for some vista shots.  As I began to hike up the slope the second time, the top runner passed me.  (This made me feel small again, but I did have a great opportunity to take some photos of him as he climbed the trail)
  • I photographed for 10 hours today.  (But that wasn't a challenge. I loved it. :-))

On the way up the ski slope for the second time I reflected a lot on photography.  How many photos is enough?  Will the client be happy?  I think that I had already achieved those two goals.  So why was I up here again?  The answer is,  I hadn't satisfied either goal for myself.  I think I am my own harshest critic.  In many ways I still feel very small when it comes to photography.  I answer a lot of peoples questions, but realize I still have so much to learn.  Even though I feel small, I feel that I'm really enjoying the process.

I think being a harsh critic of my own work has some good points and some bad points.  The good point being that it helps me to strive to do better.  All you runners out there know what I'm talking about.  The bad point is if I let it discourage me, and give up.  I'm far from that point at this time, but it is something I need to be aware.

If your still with me on this post, thank you reader of the blog.  Thank you for your comments they really help me to continue (Some of the smallest comments have meant the most.).  Thank you for pointing out articles that you have read and have helped you.  Thank you for listening to me through the process. Thank you for your tips that you have learned along the way.

I think alone I feel small, but with all your help I'm standing on the shoulders of Giants.

Lessons Learned:
  • I finally found how to change the metering mode on my camera.  Woohoo!!!  I knew it once, but I forgot.  See I'm still small.
  • I forgot about the 1.5/3.0 meter focus button on my lens.  So the photos that the subjects were less the 1.5 meters away didn't focus correctly.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/2600, Aperture f/2.8, ISO 100, Focal Length 70 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 142mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, handheld.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Week 21, Day 148, September 18, 2009 Fall Fungi

On the way home from work today as I crossed the footbridge from the parking lot into Collegetown at Cornell University, a caught a very bright orange object out the corner of my eye on the edge of the gorge.  I looked over and found a fungi growing on a stump of a tree.

Of course I had to photograph it.  I carefully climbed down to the edge, and got my camera.  I didn't have my tripod with me so I attempted to hold the camera as steady as possible.  I also had to up the ISO a little.

I'm not sure what type of fungi it is, but I found it beautiful.  I hope you enjoy.

Lessons Learned:
  • I need to following things that catch my eye.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/100 sec, Aperture f/4.0, ISO 400, Focal Length 24 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 39mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, hand held.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Week 20, Day 147, September 17, 2009, More Fall Colors

As the days get shorter the trees are gaining more color. Everyday there are more changes around us.  The trees will be changing more rapidly as winter approaches.

Of all the trees, the red and orange color of the maple trees are probably my favorite colors of fall.  This is a maple tree that I found along Lick Street in Groton, NY.

What does fall look like where you live?

Lessons Learned:
  • The Days are getting shorter.  I'm having less time at the end of the day to take outdoor photographs.  I'm going to have to start taking photos inside.  I wonder what new things I'll learn this winter.

Photo details: Exposure time 1/60 sec, Aperture f/8.0, ISO 800 (grr, mistake), Focal Length 19 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 31mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, tripod.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Week 20, Day 146, September 16, 2009, Logistics

As I mentioned the other day the Iroquois Trial Ultras is this Saturday.  A lot of people don't realize how much work is involved in planning a race.  I can only imagine the process.  Tonight Ian had 6 people just for marking the trail.  This is just one small part of the whole process, and each of these guys will put in at least two hours of work this evening.

Ian allowed me to tag along to see parts of the route, and possible places to take photographs.  I will be on the mountain at about 5:15 AM to be ready for the runners as they ascend the first ski slope at Greek Peak.  Then I will be running around for several hours trying to get great shots as they run through various parts of the trail.  I hope I don't get lost in the process.

The runners as they ascend the first ski slope will be running in the dark.  They will be wearing head lamps to light their way.  It's a very difficult race with lots of elevation changes.  The top runners take just a little under 24 hours to complete the 100 mile course.  I admire all of them for their training, and running abilities.  The race also includes a 50 mile course, and relay teams.  All of the participants are incredible athletes, and I look forward to seeing them on Saturday.

Lessons Learned:
  • I chased a beautiful sunset looking for the perfect foreground this evening.  I never found the perfect foreground.  Some days the scene isn't in the cards.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/640 sec, Aperture f/4.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 19 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 31mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, handheld. The runners will be wearing head lamps as they run through the dark.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Week 20, Day 145, September 15, 2009, "Evidence of Wind"

Earlier this summer I was thinking about how to represent various aspects of weather through photography.  Rain has been one that I played with, and was able to capture drops of rain,  I've tried a few times to capture wind.  I think wind is a little more tricky.  Many times we see it as movement. To capture it as a moment in time in a photograph is a little more difficult.  Tonight I experimented  to do so with a slower shutter speed on those tall flowers that I had in the blog about a week ago.

Although this photo is abstract, I do like some of the patterns that were captured as the wind moved the flowers back and forth.  I think this still has a way to go, but might yield some interesting results in the future.

Are there ways in which you experiment with creativity?  What are they?

Lessons Learned:
  • Experiments do not always turn out as you hoped, but with most I learn something.
  • Some days I have to look a long time before I find anything to photograph.  Today was one of those days.
Photo details: Exposure time 1.6 sec, Aperture f/22.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 26 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 42mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, tripod.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Week 20, Day 144, September 14, 2009, Ithaca Commons

I had a meeting on the Ithaca Commons after work.  The meeting was with Ian Golden the owner of the Fingerlakes Running Company. Ian is the Race Director for the Iroquois Trail Ultras a 50 and 100 mile race taking place near Ithaca this weekend.  I'm going to be photographing parts of the race.  It should be a great time, and I hope to have some great trail running photos at the end of it.

The Ithaca commons is a very interesting place full of very interesting people. There is always music, and people dancing.  Today these two men were playing drums.  I really enjoyed their music, and that they allowed me to photograph them.

Lessons Learned:
  • Once again I learned that many people are great about letting a photographer photograph them.  I think it's important to ask before taking photos.  
  • I think that if I had the opportunity to do this again, I would have tried my 50mm lens with a 1.4 aperture to blur the background some.  That might have made for a more interesting photo.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/60 sec, Aperture f/9.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 40 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 65mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, hand held.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Week 20, Day 143, September 13, 2009, "Golden Rod"

The fields around central New York look like a canvas of blues, purples, whites, greens, and yellows.

Most of the yellows are caused by golden rod. It wouldn't be Fall without golden rod. It's considered a weed by most people, but the colors are amazing. I enjoy looking at, and photographing it.

What is your favorite colors of Fall?

Lessons Learned:
  • I thought this was the plant that caused a problem with hay fever for a lot of people. But, according to Wikipedia, it's ragweed that causes that problem. Ragweed blooms at the same time as golden rod. The seeds of golden rod are to heavy to be carried by the wind very far.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/80, Aperture f/10.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 90 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 146mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, tripod.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Week 20, Day 142, September 12, 2009, Fall Geese, Weekly Winner in Online Viewer Poll.

The gray skies, the cooler temperatures, the changing colors, and now congregating geese. Fall is officially upon us.

On the way home from the Mountain Building Conference at Cornell University, there was a large gaggle of geese in a field. I stopped and was able to take several photos. Eventually some of them started to fly. I like this photo because it contains two groups of geese in fight.

The skies were a uniform color of clouds. I like the contrast of the dark and gray in the geese vs the almost white skies above.

Lessons Learned:
  • I need to stick around as long as I can, because photo opportunities continue to change. It was quite a while before the geese started flying.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/400, Aperture f/9.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 70 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 113mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, handheld.

Weekly winner in online viewer poll.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Week 20, Day 141, September 11, 2009 Stretching

It wouldn't be fall without Football.

Here the team stretches before the game. They played a great game.

Lessons Learned:
  • Sometimes it's easy to loose myself in the game, and forget to take photographs.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/500, Aperture f/3.2, ISO 800, Focal Length 70 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 114mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, handheld.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Week 19, Day 140, September 10, 2009, The Beginning of Fall

Whenever I travel to other parts of the world, I'm always amazed at all the things that are different than where I live.

In Rome, Italy it was the incredible churches and art, the smart cars and their owner's parking methods, the outdoor cafes and piazzas. As I rode the bus into the center of Rome, I wanted to shout at the people on the bus, "Wake up, don't you realize that you live in an incredible city. How can you sleep when you are surrounded with all of this."

At home, I'm half asleep. I think that I miss all of the things that make this an interesting area. Fall is a very short season for us, so I think it helps wake me up. I'm amazed at the colors and the beauty.

This Fall the leaves are just beginning to change. This tree was in the middle of a lot of trees that are still mostly green. I look forward to taking lots of photos of our fall colors, and hope you enjoy them.

If you take some photos yourself, please post them to your blog or web site, and place a link here. I look forward to seeing what you come up with.

Lessons Learned:
  • The colors of the leaves were much more vibrant when the sun was at my back.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/100, Aperture f/10.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 70 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 113mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, tripod.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Week 19, Day 139, September 9, 2009, Interesting Colors

It's interesting all the colors that can be extracted from a photo with a few adjustments. This is the head of some type of grass growing in our yard. I like how the blurry background can be used as back drop especially with a wide aperture.

Lessons Learned:

  • The colors of fall are coming very quickly. I need to be ready. The North East is an incredible place for fall colors. I need to show it to the world, or at least to the few people who visit this blog. Stay tuned.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/250, Aperture f/1.8, ISO 100, Focal Length 50 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 81mm, Lens Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II, hand held (it should have been with a tripod).

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Week 19, Day 138, September 8, 2009, Jewelweed

This photo was very difficult to take. The Jewelweed plant has the little seed pods that hang from it. When something disturbs the pods they explode, and the seed flies through the air. Most people that I know enjoy popping the pods. Here I squeezed the bottom of the pod with one hand, while depressing the shutter with the other one. In the photo you can see the seed flying through the air. This is one of the signs of fall.

Lessons Learned:
  • Sometimes interesting shots take a lot of work. I'd took several photos to get this one. I'd like to take more to see if I can take a better one.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/800 sec, Aperture f/4.0, ISO 1600, Focal Length 40 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 65mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, tripod.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Week 19, Day 137, September 7, 2009, "Tall Yellow Flower", Winner of Week 19 in the online viewer poll

I'm not sure what this flower is called. It grows near the back of our house. I was standing when I took this photo, and I'm 6'4". So that may give you some idea of how tall these are. They grow to about 8 feet tall.

As far as the photography is concerned, I used my circular polarizer filter. I wanted to try and have a blue sky. The filter did help with the sky, but then the flowers were to dark. I then popped up the flash on my camera so that the flowers would have some light. I still wanted a faster shutter speed, but I discovered that the built in flash on my camera will only allow the shutter speed to be 1/200 of a second. Great, now I have to add the Speed Light Flash as another item on my wish list!

Lessons Learned:
  • See paragraph above about the need for a better flash.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/200 sec, Aperture f/4.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 17 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 27mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, handheld, Circular Polarizer Filter, Flash.

Winner of week 19 in the online viewer poll.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Week 19, Day 136, September 6, 2009, "Good Father"

We spent the day with family at my Uncle's pond. My cousin Jeff and his wife Jamie just had their second child Robbie.

It's been a while since I used a people photo, so I thought I'd post this one. Jeff is a great father, and I'm very happy for him and his family.

Lessons Learned:

  • When taking portraits try taking photos from various angles. I wish I had spent more time trying various angles. I find this one interesting. We seem to be the observer, but he seems unaware of us (the camera). I like the effect, but I think there could be some improvements made.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/20 sec, Aperture f/6.3, ISO 100, Focal Length 21 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 34mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, handheld.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Week 19, Day 135, September 5, 2009, The Cow, The Fog, and The Moon

Many mornings as I drive to work I look and see so many photo opportunities that I can't take advantage. So, this morning I woke up early and decided to go out and try and take advantage. The fog was really cool, the sun rise amazing, and a full moon in the sky. Wow, what and incredible morning!!

In this photo I took advantage of a small pond beyond the willow tree that was letting off some fog from being warmer than the surrounding air. The moon was in a great position, and the cow was out eating breakfast. (I guess this is what is called an alignment of the stars.)

Lessons Learned:
  • I had to play with the moon in this shot in Photoshop so that it wouldn't be so washed out. I need practice on this one. It's much better, but not quite right. Any suggestions from you great photoshop users out there?
Photo details: Exposure time 1/30, Aperture f/8.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 120 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 194mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, tripod.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Week 19, Day 134, September 4, 2009, "Getting ready for the Game"

Tonight was the first football game of the regular season for the Groton team. They faced a formidable opponent, and played well. I took over 1000 photos at the game.

Here are the boys before the game has begun.

Lessons Learned:
  • When the lights were on, and it was dark, I had the shutter speed to fast, and the photos were very dark. I'll have to use a shutter speed of 250 next time. I have to relearn the settings every year. Maybe with the blog, I can look up previous years settings.
  • I find that I'm finding ways to more naturally stabilize the lens. Tonight I got down on one knee, and put my other knee up. I would then place my elbow on the knee that was up, and steady the bottom of the lens with my hand.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/320, Aperture f/4.0, ISO 800, Focal Length 75 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 122mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, hand held.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Week 18, Day 133, September 3, 2009, "No Bills"

It's been a little while since I've done a silly photo.
As I was walking around the yard, this shot came to me.

I've been thinking about theme's, so here's your challenge blog reader. Take a photo from inside your mailbox, and post it on your blog. (Or some other online photo publishing place.) Add your link to the comments below. This should be a lot of fun. I look forward to seeing what you come up with.

Lessons Learned:
  • Lighten up on the serious photos once in a while, and have some fun with photography.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/4 sec, Aperture f/20.0, ISO 800 (oops), Focal Length 17 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 27mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, mailbox as a tripod.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Week 18, Day 133, September 2, 2009, McGraw Hall Cornell University

This morning as I was walking to my building I walked next to the McGraw Clock Tower. The Clock tower has 21 bells, and is played several times a day by Chime Masters. During the semester one of the daily concerts is at 7:45 AM every weekday morning. If the door is open you are allowed to go up, and listen/watch the concert. I had never been up in the tower, so I decided to go. I had an exclusive concert in that I was the only one in attendance this morning. Just before 8:00 he asked me if I would like to play the 8:00 AM chime. I agreed to play just the one bell 8 times that signifies 8:00 AM. It made my day.

After the concert I was allowed to walk up the last flight of stairs and could look at the 21 bells. I also had a great view of cayuga lake, and Cornell University. I wish I had my wide angle lens with me. I had my telephoto lens, and took a few photographs including this one looking at part of the Arts Quad. McGraw Hall is in the main portion of the photo.

Lessons Learned:
  • If possible carry all of your camera equipment. I had my running clothing with me, so I was limited on what I could carry.
  • Look for new opportunities to photograph. It's not only fun to photograph, but the opportunities are a lot of fun as well.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/80, Aperture f/9.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 70 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 113mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, hand held.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Week 18, Day 132, September 1, 2009, Copper Spider Web, Winner of week 18 in online viewer poll.

I went for a walk in the woods at around 6:00 PM. The sun was getting low in the sky, and it was fairly dark in the woods. I thought that it was dark, and that my photos would be worthless. While I walked along, I started noticing spider webs as the sun would poke through the leaves. I took a few photos, but would quickly loose the light. Just as I was leaving I noticed this one further up in a tree. I had to act quickly to get the photo with the golden sunlight reflecting through it. The effect produced a web that almost looks like it's made of copper.

Lessons Learned:
  • I'm am still very surprised by where I find photo opportunities. Many times, I have just about given up when I spot something.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/160, Aperture f/2.8, ISO 1600 (because I didn't have time to set up the tripod. I was loosing the light to quickly and had to act fast.), Focal Length 200 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 323mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, hand held.

Winner of Week 18 in online viewer poll.