The Forrest

Morning Light

Morning Light

It is one of those trying times for me right now….challenges, challenges and more challenges.  

As I processed this photo it pretty much matched my mood.  A dark forest being slowly being lit by the morning sun after a rainy night.  The morning haze showing off the rays of light and mist.  i see a lot of darkness, but I can still feel the light of the Lord guiding me step by step through the woods.

As a newer artist I still find it extraodinary when emotion guides your artistic decisions and direction.  I think that is what makes the whole adventure enjoyable and thought provoking.  Yet I cannot help myself from asking if anyone else sees my vision the same way…or will it merely become whatever they want it to be?  If someone does not see what you intended are you a success or a failure?  

To answer my question, I think it would be silly to think everyone will look at the photo the way you intended.  We all have different thoughts, perspectives and references.  Success and failure of a piece really depends on whether or not the image gets you to simply stop and think about your photo as they apply their thoughts to it.  

-ehw

P.S. X-E1 with 18-55 shot while cooking eggs and sausage.

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Lessons in Silence

Lessons in Silence

Lessons in Silence

One of the things about being the Dad with a camera in Little League is you have to learn to be an observer…and nothing more.

See if you capture the critical play and know the umpire got it wrong..you’d better stay quiet.  It is the umpire’s field, he called it the way he saw it, and he’s the authority not you.  To kick, shout or throw a tantrum is to dishonor your team and status as a photographer.  It will also get you asked to leave and not come back!  Anyway the umpires called a good game, excellent strike zone and kept it all moving. Besides if you focus on your craft, you capture a moment and show how to be a good relaxed Dad.  

My son did well.  Pulled in a fly out in right, grounded into an infielders choice, and caught for an inning.  He got settled down and did well behind the plate.  He had a great play guarding the plate…but I will refer back to the lesson in silence and not tell you the call!  See whether he got credit for the out or not it did not matter for the purposes of me getting to stay on the field!  He hauled the ball in, got a tag on the runner, and improved during his second tour behind the plate this season.  I got to see all this without a fence in front of me, and with a 60-250mm (90-375mm with a 1.5 crop factor) telephoto lens!  HEHE!

So that takes me to today…first game I was able to shoot all season from start to finish.  I vowed today to make sure I did as little as I could in post production.  So I shot RAW + JPEG, set the camera to vibrant, worked the exposure settings between shots to get the best one, played with highlight and shadow controls in camera…and worked it as well as I could.  Big thing in post is cropping, and then some extra highlight controls (it was very bright!).  By working hard, and getting the JPEGs right I got the work done quickly today.  If something needed extra work it would only take a few seconds to switch to the RAW and try to recover a few more highlights of shadows to enhance the shot.  Today I did not have to do that at all.

So in a few minutes I’ll share the photos with both teams (the other team’s coach was my son’s coach last fall)…and head off to bed…job all done!

Now all I need to to get paid for this sometime!

-ehw

P.S. Mr Pentax K-5 with 60-250F4 all day long

Ground Ball!

Ground Ball!

Spot On

Basking in the light

Basking in the light

My little girl Kellie her was reading like her big sister bookworm, and I just had to capture the smile…so I did.

Now in this little photo I found myself able to teach myself the value of a feature, and to remember an RC (as in Raphael Conception) rule.

I knew the had a high contrast scene, and to use the zone metering would make everything 18% grey  (aka blah).  So for this photo I slipped into spot metering (my spot metering is aligned with my focus point).  This means my focus point will be exposed properly, and everything else will be exposed relative to that value.  As a result you get all the blown highlights above my daughter, but I accepted that since I wanted it to be light and airy.  Had I used zone metering the camera would attempt to meter different segments of the photo to have as much properly exposed as possible.  Normally that is great, but it would take the pop out of this photo and make it flat.  So my desired light and airy feel would be gone.

The other rule, RC’s rule for kids, is in full force here.  I had to take three photos with Mr Fuji to get the combination of smile, head tilt and light I wanted in the final product.  RC is right that you can get good photos of kids…you just need to take lots of photos to get the one worth keeping.  I can say for sure this is not luck, it is perseverance.  (RC is often on the video blog Photography Tips and Ticks, Kelby One and his website www.aboutrc.com)

Just one point here about how lucky I’ve been so far in my short photography career.  Even though I’m just a little guy, sold only a few photos, have so much to learn…I’ve had the opportunity to meet some of the nicest people in the business.  I’ve met and briefly worked with big industry names like Skip Cohen, Michele Celentano, Bob Coates, Scott Bourne, RC, Bill Fortney, Jim Begley and they all gave me the time of day deep respect as a person.  I’ve also met great photographers I count as friends like Adrian Ciolacu, Fran Ruchalski, Bret Watkins and many others who inspire me and helped me with things like finding a good print shop.  I actually I hope I don’t insult anyone who I run out of space to mention….

I think the thing that makes them so special is that they know how to approach a crowd with multi zone metering…and when given the chance to meet you one on one switch to spot metering.  As a result they speak to you, treat you well and make you want to take care of them as they do to you.

So look them up, and enjoy their work.  I’ll try to get a link in to each over the next few weeks so you can see the wide range of talents that inspire me…and maybe you too!

-ehw

Inspired work on the way!

Inspired work on the way!

The Slow Spring

The Slow Spring

The Slow Spring

I don’t know about you, but this almost feels like we’re going to have a year without a summer!  The flowers and blooms though are trying to come out and enjoy the sun.  Just a quick shot from the yard in the fading spring light this weekend.  These flowers are very graceful for a day at most, then they get twisted, and lose a lot of their appeal.  So if I want a shot of them, I need to photograph them as soon as they open.  So the lesson of the day is to take the shot now, because you never know if it will be there tomorrow.

Good lesson for life as well.

-ehw

P.S. Fuji X-E1 with 60mm close up lens.  (This is not a true macro as it will only do 2:1, not the full 1:1 a traditional macro will obtain)