Category Archives: Photography
I admit I have mixed feelings about zoos. Given the choice, I’d much rather see the animal in it’s natural habitat doing the natural animal thing. Having said that, our family has had many enjoyable outings at the Nashville Zoo. We have had a family membership for several years now and have made all the usual mistakes made by most other zoo attendees. “Hey, it’s the third week of June, it’s sunny and 11:00 AM. Let’s go to the zoo!” Yeah, you and everyone else.
1st mistake: Unless you love crowds more than the animals, going at the same time of year as everyone else is going to lead to crowds, lines, and stress. Think of the zoo when most people don’t. Middle Tennessee does have four distinct seasons; but most days, even in winter, the highs are 40 degrees F or better. There are so many more days that are conducive to going to the zoo when you think of it this way (of course if you are in Maine or Siberia, your zoo season may be much more limited). Continue reading
The more I learn about photography, the more I know that once you’ve found good light you’ve won most of the battle. If you want to hedge your bets on light you go out on the edges of the day– dawn and dusk. If you really want to put some distance between your photos and those captured by your average camera owner, you do what the others won’t do when others won’t do it– go out early and don’t be afraid to get wet, dirty, or both.
Sometimes on the weekend, I drag myself (fall) out of bed, put a hat on my tousled hair, grab my camera, memory cards, and batteries and stumble out into the dawn to capture the hell out of …something. What I’ve found on these bleary-eyed excursions is that there are some pretty interesting things going on when most people are just drooling on their pillows. Continue reading
Yes, I finally did it. With my wife’s buy-in I finally took the step up from my Canon 40D and purchased the 5D Mark II with the 24 – 105mm f/4L lens. If you’re not familiar with the Canon line of cameras, you’ve already left the room. If you’re a fellow avid amateur Canonista you’re probably well aware of the fabled 5DmkII. It’s very well known by portrait, nature, landscape, and wedding photogs. It was also one of the first digital SLRs with HD video and has been used to film TV commercials and independent films.
I’ve spent some time wondering about this. When I was in college the photography majors seemed to lean very heavily against color photos. The implication was (or so I perceived) that you couldn’t do fine art photography in color. And photos employing “artificial” light were especially eggregious. I theorized that this philosophy was born from two origins– 1) in the late 70′s the bulk of fine art photography to date had been done in B&W (and they were apparently not teaching William Eggleston at the time), and 2) it’s a lot easier to teach college sophomores how to process B&W film than color. Continue reading
Power lines– the bane of every photographer’s existence. How many times have I seen “the perfect shot” just to be foiled by power lines in the way? Sure, there are ways around them. You could move; but that always seems to ruin the perspective you had in mind (or would require you to stand in the middle of traffic). You could just remove them in Photoshop; but I refuse to spend hours cloning out power lines (life’s too short). If the lines are significantly closer to you than the subject you are photographing you can adjust your depth of field so that the lines go far enough out of focus to disappear; but that means your subject will have a shallow depth of field, and only works if the lines are a lot closer to you than the subject. Continue reading