Sunday, January 31, 2010

Week 40, Day 281, January 31, 2010, Kyle's Gold Fish

We drove to visit my son, his fiance, and their roommate in Rochester.  It's a four hour drive, so my photography was limited.  We had a great time, and they made us a great lunch.  It was so much fun to see them all again.

My son has had this gold fish for several years, and it continues to grow all the time.  It has great eyes, that bug out.  They may have to move it to a Gold Fish pond this summer.

Lessons Learned:
  • I learned a little more about the live feed, and focusing the photo with the new camera.  It's a little tricky, but I'm starting to get the hang of it.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/80 sec, Aperture f/1.8, ISO 400, Focal Length 50 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 82mm, Lens Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II, handheld.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Week 40, Day 280, January 30, 2010 "Taughannock Falls in Winter"

It was cold today, but the sun was out.  So Judy and I had an Ithaca type day.
  We started by going to the Moosewood Restaurant for lunch.  The food was fantastic, and the service was great.
Next we went to the Taughannock Falls Overlook for a view of the falls.  These falls are incredible any time of the year, but the ice helps to make them spectacular.  A sense of scale is difficult, but these falls are 215 tall.  They are among the tallest falls East of the Rockies.  Plus a year long photo blog in this area wouldn't be complete without at least one photo of Taughannock Falls.
  We ended the day getting supplies at the the Shops at the Ithaca Mall and were elbow to elbow with Cornell University and Ithaca College students who have returned to Ithaca. 
A cold day in Ithaca is not necessarily a bad day.

Lessons Learned:
  • It's always interesting to go to a site seeing spot with lots of people with cameras.  Many assume I'm a professional (probably because I'm old, and have a tripod.)  Little do they know.  But I find it a great place to talk to people, as well as take photos.  I find that many times there are others that are there that also know something about photography.  I learn by watching what they find interesting in ways that I haven't considered.  I also tell them what I'm trying to accomplish, and I like to hear their responses.
  • I find that if I attempt to blur the water in the falls by using a longer exposure that it begins to look like ice.  I like having a distinction between the ice and the falls.  So, for me I don't tend to blur the water in these types of photos.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/25 sec, Aperture f/20.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 70 mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, tripod.

Week 40, Day 279, January 29, 2010, "Behind the Back"

Normally when I put up sports photographs for the "Photo of the Day" I use photos where my son's team members are the center of attention.  For today's photo I'm using the opposing team.  This player for the Lansing team had an incredible behind the back pass to his team member as he was driving toward the basket.  I was lucky to capture it in a photograph from the other side of the gym.  I wasn't expecting it.

Lessons Learned:
  • Although it's noisier, I experimented with an ISO of 6400 on my basketball shots tonight.  I was very impressed at the quality of the shots for such a high ISO.  We were in the home gym which has bright lights for a gym.  Using an ISO this high I was able to use shutter speeds of 1/500 sec and 1/640 sec. This really helps in getting the stop action of the game. I also think it will help tremendously in the darker gyms. If you click on the image you'll see a larger version of the photo and will see what I mean by the noise level.  What do you think?
Photo details: Exposure time 1/500 sec, Aperture f/2.8, ISO 6400, Focal Length 125 mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, hand held.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Week 39, Day 278, January 28, 2010, "Heat by the Fire on a Cold Winters Night"

It's 9 degrees, the wind is blowing, and I don't have to go outside tonight.  The fire feels great on a night like tonight.

I hope you are all warm and safe wherever you may be tonight. (Or if you're in the southern hemisphere, may comfortable breezes comfort your evening.)

Lessons Learned:
  • Taking photos of a white out with to fast of a shutter speed doesn't show the snow flakes very well.  (More of a Note to self for future reference)
Photo details: Exposure time 8 sec, Aperture f/5.6, ISO 400, Focal Length 17 mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, dog crate for a tripod.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Week 39, Day 277, January 27, 2010, Law School Arches II

I returned to work today, and felt much better.  On my way home the sun was out, and there were blue skies.  This helped lift my spirits even higher.  As I walked to catch the bus, I walked through one of my favorite areas on campus, and snapped this photo.

Lessons Learned:
  • I need to be less of a wimp when I'm not feeling well.  There are people in much more difficult situations than I am, and they are still doing incredible work.  I need to find inspiration in their work, and push forward.  
  • I figured out how to set my camera to an ISO 6400 and 12800.  I'm surprised at how well those ISO's still look.  I feel some very dark photography coming.
 Photo details: Exposure time 1/100 sec, Aperture f/5.6, ISO 400, Focal Length 17 mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, hand held.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Week 39, Day 276, Music Room

My son has a music room where he has a few guitars, a keyboard, and amp, a computer, and a banjo.  (The banjo is mine.) 

I've haven't been feeling well, and haven't left the house in 3 days.  I'm beginning to feel like a hermit.  Hopefully I'll feel better, and go back to work tomorrow.  I hope my creativity returns with my health.

I did read some more about my camera, and figured how how to record video.  I recorded my first video of my dog.  In the video he is running back and forth with his toy.  He lives up to his name "Tank".

Lessons Learned:
  • How to make movies with my camera.
 Photo details: Exposure time 2 sec, Aperture f/5.6, ISO 100, Focal Length 17 mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, the camera was sitting on a stack of albums for a tripod..

Monday, January 25, 2010

Week 39, Day 275, January 25, 2010, Amaryllis

It's winter, I've been taking a lot of sports photos, and the weather has been wet and rainy the past two days.

I need some color.

Every year my wife plants Amaryllis bulbs.  This gives us some color about this time of year when we really need it.  Thank you Judy!

This photo was taken on the kitchen table with a candle light.  I used the gorilla grip and a chair for the tripod.

Lessons Learned:
  • I purchased a toy with my new camera.  It's called the Eye-Fi.  I'm still playing with it, and see some definite advantages, and some disadvantages for the type of photography that I do.  The Eye-Fi card is a SD card that has a wireless connection.  I've connected in conjunction with my desktop computer, and my Picassa Web Albums.  Any time I'm near the computer with my camera on, the Eye-Fi software on my desktop sees if there are new images on my card, and copies them to the computer through the wireless connection.  After copying to the computer, I have the software autoconfigured to copy the contents to a private folder on my Picassa Web Albums.  Once I had it all set up, I really like the automation.  It even works if someone else is using the computer.  The disadvantage is the speed.  The wired connection to transfer the files is quicker.  I think that I might give this to my wife for her camera.  She doesn't take as many photos as I do, and I think it will work well for her.
 Photo details: Exposure time 10 sec, Aperture f/5.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 32 mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, gorilla grip tripod, Auto White Balance.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Week 38, Day 272, January 24, 2009, "Let the Games Begin"

It was a rainy relaxing day at home.  After the past two days of taking a lot of photographs, I took it easy today.

If I had more energy, I'd get a new soccer ball and clean all the dust off the playing field.  I'm not sure which photo I'd like better.  The dust, and the wear on the ball also give it an interesting look.  I may still come back some day, and see how they compare.

Lessons Learned:
  • It took me a while to think of a subject today.  It was a lazy, rainy day.  For me, creativity has a lot to do with how I feel.
  • This was another case where the live view in the LCD panel on the back of the camera came in handy.  I wouldn't be able to look through the view finder because the camera was sitting on the playing field.
  Photo details: Exposure time 30 sec, Aperture f/18.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 50 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 82mm, Lens Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II, I used the lens cap to tilt the camera a little.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Week 39, Day 273, January 23, 2010, Hartshorne Memorial Masters Mile

The Hartshorne Memorial Masters Mile is the oldest Masters Mile race in the United States.  It was started over 40 years ago by Jim Hartshorne at Cornell University.  In attracts many local milers, but also World Class runners.  It's an incredible event.  As a runner, I am amazed at this event and the people who organize and participate in it.  It looks like another World Record was set today at the event.  I'll leave it to the Event organizers to make the official announcement, but it was incredible.

Three years ago, I ran in this event.  Two years ago I began photographing it.  I really enjoy the photography, and the runners seem to appreciate it.  My new camera seems much better at dark conditions like this one.

This photo is one of the slower heats that is made up of a lot of the local runners.  They are all heroes in my book.  They've trained hard in their spare time to compete here today.  Great job to everybody who participated.

Lessons Learned:

  • In the past two days I have taken over 5000 photos.  It takes a long time to upload them, and sort them all on my computer.  I still haven't gone through them all.  I guess the lesson is that photography can take a lot of time, especially when an event is involved. (Let alone 2 events.)
  • A terrible thing happened with the photograph of the fastest race.  It was a photo finish with two runners that were neck and neck.  I was facing them coming strait down the track.  When I was taking their photo near the tape, they were far enough apart that my camera began focusing on the far wall 100 meters away.  Neither of the runners were in focus in my photo.  I think this happened to most of the photographers that were there.  The local sports photographer was smart enough to focus on the tape instead of the runners, but I'm not sure if he was happy with his photo either.

Week 39, Day 272, January 22, 2010, Multiple Stories

The students that were organizing the Annual Graduate Research Symposium for the Earth and Atmospheric Science Department at Cornell University asked me if I would take photographs at the event.  Of course I said yes.

Once again I was amazed at the hard work, and interesting subjects that they do research.  It gives me real hope in the future.

This photo was during a break between the talks.  I like the photo because there seems to be a lot of conversations happening at once.  I also like the sharp contrast in the colors between the screens and the person on the right, as well as the desks.

Lessons Learned:
  • Having two cameras with two types of lenses works very well at these types of events.  I had my 70-200mm lens on a tripod in the back of the room, and my older camera with my 50 mm lens that I used to move around the room to take photos.
  • I think that it helps if you can remove yourself from the activity when photographing the event.  If you are part of the event, it's easier to begin conversations with others and miss photo opportunities.
 Photo details: Exposure time 1/60 sec, Aperture f/4.5, ISO 1600, Focal Length 50 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 82mm, Lens Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II, handheld.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Week 38, Day 272, January 21, 2010, Ice

As I was walking back to work from lunch I noticed a lot of ice in the bottom of the gorge along side the creek.  After work I walked down part of the gorge to take these photos.  I didn't have my tripod with me, so I did the best I could.

I think if the lighting was just right, this could be an incredible subject.

Lessons Learned:
  • From what I've been reading, when photographing snow you should set your camera to over expose the photo by 1.5 to 2 stops.  This has worked fairly well for me for most photographs.  Today however on some of my shots of ice, there was a lot of exposed rocks.  These rocks were much darker in color.  My over exposing of those photos made the ice very over exposed.  I should have compensated for the dark rocks.  I should have also checked my histogram.
 Photo details: Exposure time 1/160 sec, Aperture f/3.5, ISO 200, Focal Length 115 mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, hand held.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Week 38, Day 271, January 20, 2010, Milk Can

Somebody had mentioned in the comments of one of my first cellar series that they wanted to see more of the milk can in that photo.  (I think only a portion of it was showing in that photo.)

This is the 6th in the cellar series.  The milk can is sitting in the old coal bin in the basement. 

Lessons Learned:
  • The first time I took this photo, the lighting was to harsh.  I returned to the basement and turned off the nearest overhead light.  This seemed to work much and create much more interesting shadows.  The shadows now have more definition.  You can still see the right side of the can in these photo.  In the harsher light it was just to dark.
Photo details: Exposure time 30 sec, Aperture f/5.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 26 mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, tripod.

Week 38, Day 270, Winter Wonderland, January 20, 2010

The snow conditions were just right.  It was warm enough that the snow was sticky, and large flakes.  The flakes would land on the branches of the trees.  It was a Winter Wonderland.

It was still dark when I arrived at work.  I took this photo in the 5 minutes that I had at lunch time.  It would have been a great day to take off, and look for amazing sites.  Maybe next time.

Lessons Learned:
  • Sometimes there isn't enough time in the day to learn a lesson.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/20 sec, Aperture f/8.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 40 mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, handheld.

Week 38, Day 269, January 20, 2010, Dinosaur BBQ Restaurant

Judy and I headed to Syracuse NY to pick up our niece at the Airport.  She was flying from Charleston, SC back from her break to return to Syracuse University.  After we dropped her off, we headed over to the original Dinosaur BBQ Restaurant.  This colorful Restaurant has graffiti everywhere, and it's encouraged.  The food is fantastic.

Photography in a place like this is difficult.  I held the camera at my chest, and just took a few photos.  My 50mm lens wasn't the right one to have because of the tight quarters, but I did my best. 

Lessons Learned:
  • My 17mm lens is much better in tight quarters.
  • Sugar Packets can be used as a tripod on a table to repositions the camera angles.
  • Napkins can be used to cover up the flashing light that indicates the camera is getting ready to take a photo. (Especially when you're trying to be discrete.)
Photo details: Exposure time 1/25 sec, Aperture f/1.8, ISO 1600, Focal Length 50 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 82mm, Lens Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II, handheld.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Week 38, Day 268, January 17, 2010, Bell Tower

 Today after the church service, I stepped into the Bell Tower to take a few photos.  The bricks and the old rickety stairs have always fascinated me.

This subject is probably a good candidate for HDR processing, or taking the photo just as it's starting to get dark.  The light from the windows dominates the image. 

Lessons Learned:
  • I tired some HDR processing, but when I had bracketed my camera, all three images were at 30 seconds.  I should have checked.  30 seconds is the maximum before switching to bulb (a direct control of the shutter).  The next time I try and take this photo I'll try and wait to sun up or sun down so that I have more direct control of the light coming through the windows.  Another option will be to use a higher ISO speed so that I can bracket my photos with more variety on the shutter speed.  Then I can try HDR processing again.

Photo details: Exposure time 30 sec, Aperture f/22.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 17 mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, the camera was sitting on a box on the floor.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Week 38, Day 267, "The Man Behind The Color Tree"

Today Werner Sun had an Opening at the Corners Gallery in Ithaca.  I really like Werner's incredible mobiles.  Each is unique, and has very interesting shapes and colors.  Many of them represent some sort of theme, but it's also up to the observer to see what they mean to them.  And as a mobile they continue to shift and change.  They create new shadow, and new shapes as they align with other shapes.  They are a lot of fun to watch and enjoy.  In his blog The Color Tree he photographs and discusses some of his work.  I don't think the photos do his work justest. 

If you're in Ithaca, please stop by and take a look.

Lessons Learned:
  • I would have loved to have spent a lot more time photographing Werner and his work from various angles, but he was in the middle of his opening.  I didn't want to disrupt the Opening to much.  He was a great sport, and allowed me to take many photos, and I thank you Werner.  Maybe some other time when there isn't an opening I'll have another opportunity to try and capture Werner and his work in a more creative way.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/60 sec, Aperture f/5.0, ISO 400, Focal Length 17 mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, hand held.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Week 38, Day 266, Abstract Basketball

Ok, I have to admit.  This photo wasn't planned.  I had been taking photos all night at the basketball game with my camera set in manual mode.  Somehow I accidentally switched it to A-Depth mode.

I think after looking thousands of actions shots, when a blurred shot comes along it captures my imagination.  It seems a little abstract to me, especially with the colors in the audience. I like the effect.  Granted, I'm not going to shoot all of my basketball shots like this, but it was nice for a little change.

Lessons Learned:
  • Sometimes there are happy accidents.
 Photo details: Exposure time 1/14 sec, Aperture f/8.0, ISO 3200, Focal Length 73 mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, hand held.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Week 37, Day 265, January 14, 2010, The Seal

I walked under the tower at the Cornell Law School today, and the lighting was just right on the Cornell Seal.  The rocks were drying, but still had moister on the edges.  The sun was setting, and cast a yellow glow through the arch.

This was my favorite photo of the day.

Lessons Learned:
  • I took a variety of photos today.  Some were almost what I wanted, but just lacked a little.  Today's lesson is that I will keep these photos for ideas for future photo opportunities, and try and remember the mistakes that I made this time.
  • Sometimes photography is not the right thing.  On the way home tonight there was an accident in front of our bus.  A truck was on fire, and the fire trucks were not there yet.  Several people on the bus mentioned that I should take a photo.  We were stuck in traffic so I got off the bus with my camera and approached the scene.  I could see some of the police heading toward the ambulance, and decided this was an inappropriate time for me to take a photo.  I turned and left the scene without using my camera.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/25 sec, Aperture f/7.1, ISO 200, Focal Length 17 mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, hand held.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Week 37, Day 264, January 13, 2010, Are the Stars Out Tonight?

I have a new toy.  It's a 2x extend for my 70-200mm lens.  My understanding is that it basically extends the lens to a 140-400mm lens. 
I received the 2x extender as a Christmas gift, and I have wanted to take some photographs of the stars.  I realize that there are much better ways of doing this, but I just wanted to see how well it would work.  Unfortunately we have had very few clear nights since Christmas. 

Tonight I was attempting to take photos in the clear patches of the sky, but the clouds began to move, and in a short time it was cloudy.  I took this photo for all you astronomy buffs that have had to fight the clouds.

Happy Star Gazing.

Lessons Learned:
  • My tripod works fairly well when the lens is horizontal and runs parallel with the ground, but when I attempt to take a photograph of Pleiades (7 sisters) star cluster, my lens would not stay still.  Gravity was pulling the camera downward.  I'll need to find another way to attempt this.
Photo details: Exposure time 4 sec, Aperture f/5.6 (2x extenders lowest f-stop), ISO 800, Focal Length 140 mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, tripod.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Week 37, Day 263, January 12, 2010, Box Out

I like this photo for the depth of field.  The shooter is in focus, but you can still see some activity in the background. (Including a nice box out by my son.)

I'm liking the new camera.  3200 ISO is the way to go.

Lessons Learned:
  • I should have used the Servo focus tonight.  I didn't, and there were more shots that were blurry.  I'll return to it in the next game.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/250 sec, Aperture f/2.8, ISO 3200, Focal Length 70 mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, hand held.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Week 37, Day 262, January 11, 2010, Descent

This is the 5th photo in my cellar series.  These are the old steps leading to the basement. 

Believe it or not we had to put in a new 250 gallon fuel tank for our furnace.  These is the passage way that we had to take our tank down.  It just barely fit.

Lessons Learned:

  • My new camera has a live view setting.  This allows me to view the photo with the LCD panel on the back of the camera.  This was very handy for the tripod shot in which it wasn't easy to view through the view finder.  Most of the time I still prefer the view finder.
Photo details: Exposure time 30 sec, Aperture f/22.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 17 mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, tripod.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Week 37, Day 261, January 10, 2010, Old Orchard

I walked through the berry bushes into the old orchard through a couple of feet of snow.  The trees were beautiful.  On one of the old apple trees a single apple was stuck between a couple of branches.  It stood out because everything else was black and white.
Lessons Learned:
  • I didn't want to use a circular polarizer filter because it reduces the beauty of the snow.  At the same time the filter would have enhanced the color of the apple.  So, instead I manipulated the lighting levels on the apple with an image manipulation program.  
  • Following animal tracks are not always the easiest way to get out of the berry bushes.  Rabbits have the advantage of being able to run under the bushes.  I should have payed more attention to the Brer Rabbit stories.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/80 sec, Aperture f/8.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 33 mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, handheld, light level manipulation with Photoshop.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Week 37, Day 260, January 9, 2010, Snow, Icy Trees, and Fog

It was an incredible morning.  The trees near our house had ice on them from two days ago.  Yesterday snow accumulated on the ice.  This morning the sun was playing hide and seek behind the clouds.

In this image there was a haze over the trees in the distance with ice on the trees.  The trees closer to me had a little ice on top, but less ice below.

Lessons Learned:
  • Similar to light, elevation can have a big effect on photography.  Just a little ways down the hill from my house none of the tree had ice.  I guess the lesson is to be alert to all possibilities, and look for patterns.  Since I knew there was ice above a certain elevation, I could also take photographs on other hills in the area with similar elevations.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/800 sec, Aperture f/5.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 130 mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, hand held.


This Monochrome concept came from Aileni at The Monochrome Weekly

Friday, January 8, 2010

Week 37, Day 259, January 8, 2010, Exertion

After several years of using my Canon Digital Rebel XT, it is time for a new camera.  I received it in the mail today.  I purchased a Canon Rebel T1i.  Now I have to get used to all the new buttons, and new features.

After about 5 minutes of reading the owners manual, I took it with me to tonight's basketball game.  I immediatly noticed some great improvements.  So instead of lessons learned, I'll just mention the new features that I like:

New Features (Lessons Learned):
  • ISO 3200.  Wow, I can get faster shutter speeds, and I'm amazed that the noise level isn't that much more.
  • Much faster focusing.  With my old camera many of the photos were blurry because of the slowness of the focus, and then the slowness of the shutter speed.  I found that I could zoom in closer to the action because the camera would respond more quickly.
  • I like the larger LCD display.  It's much easier to QC the photos on the larger LCD display.
As I said, I've only read the manual for about 5 minutes.  I have a lot of features to learn about.  I look forward to the challenge.

Photo details: Exposure time 1/250 sec, Aperture f/2.8, ISO 3200, Focal Length 73 mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, hand held.

Week 36, Day 258, January 7, 2009, Catching up on the News

Today was another very limited day for photograph.  I only had time to take some photos on the bus trip home.  Today was our third meeting of the Greater Groton Photography Club.

The Photography Club is going well.  There's a lot of people with interests in photography, and we have various skill levels. I enjoyed working with a lot of people last night to show them some programs that they might like to use.  We also looked at how they might improve their photographs.  We had some still shots that they could take photographs, and try some various camera settings to see what would happen.

The only downside was that I was so busy helping others, that I didn't take any photographs myself.  I think the sacrifice was worth it.

Lessons Learned:

  • I'm amazed at how well this photo came out for the conditions of low light.  I had the ISO at 1600 (the largest for the current camera.), the fstop at 4.0 (the widest for this lens), and a very slow shutter speed. I don't have the information in front of me, but I think it was a 1/13 sec.  I have to get back to my desktop computer at home to check that.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Week 36, Day 25, January 6, 2009, Black Mark

Today is a black mark on my Year in Photos.  I did not take a photo on this day.  I got home, worked on some photography for an upcoming project, and met with a client.  I did a lot of photography work, but no took no photos.  I realized it after I had gone to bed for the night.

I have failed.  Sorry faithful reader.  I'll try and do better.  It's been a crazy week.

Lessons Learned:
  • I won't always succeed.
  • They day just didn't feel right.
Photo Details: Zilch, Nada, Zero, 

Week 36, Day 257, January 5, 2009, Anticipation

This is kind of an atypical basketball photograph, but I really liked it.  In this photo the ball is missing, but everybody's focus is on the ball.  I like the difference.

Lessons Learned:
  • I spent a lot more time tonight when there was an interaction on the floor.  Typically in the past I would focus more on the shooting.  I think the interaction between players on the floor can create some spectacular photos.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/200 sec, Aperture f/2.8, ISO 1600, Focal Length 70 mm, Lens Canon 70-200mm f2.8L USM, hand held.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Week 36, Day 256, January 4, 2010, "Needs Paint"

This is the fourth photo in my cellar series.  How many of you thought that one could get inspiration from a dirty old cellar?

There is an old wooden door that is in desperate need of a paint job.  (It's probably lead paint, so I don't think I'll refinish it.)

Although this photo looks a little like a sepia tint it isn't.  That just happens to be the color, and the lighting that was on the door.  I tried some sepia shots, but actually liked this one better. 

Lessons Learned:
  • Monday Nights are my busiest nights, so I have the least amount of time for photography.  I try and have something in mind when I start to try and speed up the process.  I'm not sure that's a good thing for creativity, but sometimes it is necessary when there is a short time frame.  I imagine that it's similar for weddings.  Wedding have a very short amount of time to take the right shots.  I think it's better to have something in mind for a lot of the photograph of a wedding.  Any wedding photographers out there that want to share their insight?
Photo details: Exposure time 10 sec, Aperture f/22, ISO 100, Focal Length 50 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 82mm, Lens Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II, tripod.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Week 36, Day 255, January 3, 2010, Dusty Old Bottle

This is photo number three in the cellar series. 

This is an old bottle that was in the cellar when we moved to this house.  It can probably hold about a gallon of liquid.  I'm not sure what it was used to store.  I've left the dust on the bottle, because I think it adds some interest for the photo.  I also think that stone wall in the background makes an interesting backdrop for the photo.

Lessons Learned:
  • There are a lot of objects in the cellar to photograph, and it comes in handy on very cold days like today. I think it will also come in handy this week when I return to work, and don't have a lot of daylight to take photos. (It was a high of about 10 degrees F today.)
Photo details: Exposure time 1/4 sec, Aperture f/1.8, ISO 100, Focal Length 50 mm, 35 mm equivalent focal length 82mm, Lens Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II, tripod.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Week 36, Day 254, January 2, 2010, Doggie in the Window

Everybody in town is familiar with this Boxer that spends a lot of his/her time looking over the town from this window.  I've wanted to take a photo of it for some time, but never had my camera with me.

It was about 10 degrees F outside, so I didn't spend a lot of time.  I'd like to get a better photograph some day.  Many times he is standing in the window, which I think would make for a better photo.

Lessons Learned:
  • A Circular Polarizer Filter will not always remove the reflection of the light in the glass.
  • Because of the previous problem, I learned how to use Photoshop to crop the window, create a new layer, and adjust the image levels of that layer to help reduce some of the glare.
Photo details: Exposure time 1/50 sec, Aperture f/7.1, ISO 100, Focal Length 35 mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, handheld, circular polarizer filter, reduced the glare on the window with Photoshop.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Week 36, Day 253, January 1, 2010, Bridge over icy water.

It was a beautiful snowy morning for the first day of 2010.

I took several photos this morning.  This was my favorite. It's from a local park.

Lessons Learned (Questions):
  • I think that the Circular Polarizer Filter is probably not a good idea for Snow photos when the sky is overcast.  It seems to create a warmer scene.
  • When importing a RAW image, I've been looking at the histograms of the colors to correct the white balance in Adobe Photoshop.  It seems that if I just have the blue starting to show on the right side of the histogram, that I'm getting the best color.  Has anybody else worked with this.  If so, do you agree with those results?
Photo details: Exposure time 1/4 sec, Aperture f/22.0, ISO 100, Focal Length 28 mm, Lens Canon EF 17-40mm, tripod, converted to black and white in Picassa.

This Monochrome concept came from Aileni at The Monochrome Weekly