Saturday, March 29, 2008

A Stranger to Complete Strangers

Every month I take part in a tutorial and a photo challenge with the Black Hawk Church Photo Group. (Although I do not attend this particular church, they still let me go…how nice of them) This months tutorial focused on using different focal lengths to achieve different photographic results (another blog maybe) and therefore the challenge mirrored the tutorial. We were challenged to take 2 pictures of the same subject with different focal lengths and try and tell a different story…oh yah, we also decided to hold the event on a really cool street in town, full of “character.” To challenge myself even more (cuz I am a sucker for punishment) I told myself that the subjects had to be complete strangers instead of bits of trash, a fence, or an interesting building or something. This is hard for me because it requires talking to people I don’t know and explaining to them that I wanted to take their picture…no I am not crazy, no I will not sell it online, no I am not stalking you…etc. Plenty of those fears went through my mind but you know what, really it was supper easy. Yes, people asked what I was doing and so I told them, but they seamed ok, in fact maybe a little happy to help out and get their 1/250th of a second of fame. It was also a lot of fun to talk to strangers, hear what they are doing, where they are from, why they are out here this early, and so on. I took far less pictures than I ever have at a challenge, but I also had a different kind of fun.

Tech: I needed two focal lengths so just used a wide zoom for the top pictures and a telephoto prime for the bottom. I started with the wide so I could talk to them, get a feel for what I wanted to say with the image, work the subject … and then I backed up a bit, switched lenses and tried it from afar. I actually felt more comfortable taking peoples pictures close to them with their permission then farther away…felt less paparazzi-ish

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

cute kid + great window light = Good Photo

Christiana is a really cute baby, celebrating her first year too!

Technical: One of the key lessons I have been learning this year is that light really matters. Yes, you can purchase really neat gear to take photos in the dark but good quality light can't be beat. Here the sunlight from outside was being let in through a window, basically creating a 3 foot by 6 foot soft box behind and sometimes to the left of camera. I just metered to that light and had a blast with Christiana. I have photographed her in this same place a couple times but without the great light and have never gotten as good of images as I did here.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Another Intern, Same Light

Takashi isn't actually a new intern for InterVarsity's 2100 Productions, but I haven't photographed him yet. He is actually an old intern now since this photo was taken on his last day. He will be heading back to Japan to work there. Takashi is also a great photographer. I guess we have many photgraphers here in the visual multi media buisness; that makes sense though. We had fun. It is amazing how animated people get when they feel comfortable in front of a camera.

Technical: Same big light source as Finn's portrait below, which is supplying most of the light and making sure that all of Takashi and his camera are well as makeing the background go black. A little pop from Takashi's flash at 1/128th power (trigered by my camera) and his diffuser on the flash made it so we can actually see it firing.