Monday, July 27, 2015


You cannot be lonely if you like the person you’re alone with. 
~ Wayne Dyer

Sometimes your mobile phone device is the only camera you have on hand - 
thereby, also making it your best camera at the moment.

We went kayaking a few weeks ago, and the iPhone camera was all I brought for capturing shots.
This is the first time I've actually processed an iPhone photo with Photoshop.
Usually I use just in-camera apps for any processing.
It worked pretty well.

As this is a photography blog, I think all cameras are game for generating images.
It's about what gear will capture the moment 
before the moment passes.
And perhaps equally important, it's about your own creative expression
and what works best for you at the time.

iPhone, DSLR, mirrorless or whatever...go out and shoot!!

iPhone 6 native camera Enlight app and Adobe CC2015

Monday, July 20, 2015

the next move

We must be willing to let go of the life we planned 
so as to have the life that is waiting for us.
~ Joseph Campbell

It took me a couple of times visiting this location to get the shot I wanted. It's not an award winning shot to be sure, but it is the best of what I took, and I was really just after the "message". 

It's a lesson I keep learning when photographing.
And rarely do you get a second chance at a subject.
Move. Move. Move before shooting.
Walk around your subject. 
View it high, view it low.
Light in front, side, or backlit.
And in the case of large subjects...find different vantage points for shooting!

This capture was a whim and an after thought. I had already taken my shots from along the edge of the river, and continued on my way. On the walk back, I passed the dock and thought to try to shoot from the vantage point of the dock ramp. I liked the composition of this shot better than the others.

When processed in monochrome, the white boat pops out from the background 
and draws your eye to it and its message. 

Did I get it right? Is your eye drawn to the boat and the message?

Fuji XT1 ISO 400 f/7.1 1/500 XF18-135mm (EFL 83mm) 

Saturday, July 18, 2015

due south

Always go with your passions. 
Never ask yourself if it’s realistic or not. 
~ Deepak Chopra

Photographing from bridges is tricky. Wind. Vibration. Wind. Vibration.
Pedestrians and cyclists. 
Not to mention traffic.
Fast shutter speeds are the best, no doubt.
But, I'm learning that even long exposures can work
because any slight and short-lived movement
 is insignificant relative to the long exposure time;
therefore, it doesn't seem to show up in the final image

I'm not sure whether this observation will stand the test of time (haha),
but it worked for the fireworks, and it worked pretty well here.

Sounds like a good reason to keep shooting long exposures from bridges to test the hypothesis!

Fuji XT1 ISO 200 f/11 17 seconds  XF18-55mm (EFL 27mm)

Wednesday, July 15, 2015


With every deed you are sowing a seed, though the harvest you may not see.
~ Ella Wheeler Wilcox

I came across these wonderful hay bales on my morning run. But, it was overcast.
Coming home that same evening, the sun was out and sunset was close at hand.
I did the only reasonable thing - I drove by the Bernet Farm to check out the hay bales.

I'm so glad I did.

Not only did I get some shots of the guys gathering the hay bales in their truck, 
I was able to capture the quickly disappearing light on the few bales remaining in the field.
15 minutes well spent.

Fuji XT1 ISO 250 f/8.0 1/80 18-135mm (88mm EFL)

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

night lights

willamette river waterfront fireworks

I often think that the night is more alive and more richly colored than the day. 
~ Vincent Van Gogh

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday weekend!

Last year we watched the July 4th fireworks show in close proximity to the fireworks themselves. It was very crowded and very difficult to photograph.
This year I had a plan to photograph from a bridge that was a modest distance away from the show. 
Close enough to see the display with ease, but distant enough to be away from the crowds and to have    bridges in the foreground and city lights as complementary elements to the main show.
This image stood out because the display on the far left was clear and not overexposed, and I also caught another explosion near the towers (middle) and a flash from the show a state away (Vancouver, WA; right). 
A triumvirate of displays!!

For this shot, I manually focused on the bridge in the foreground, I used a low ISO (200), medium aperture (f/8.0), and used the bulb setting
to manually initiate and terminate the exposure time. I aimed to commence the exposure after the initial explosion and end it before the disappearance of the display 
and before the beginning of the next explosion. In this case, 3 seconds. 
Exposing is empirical.
The most important part of the whole thing -
have fun!!

For more technical information on shooting fireworks, check out this site.

Fuji XT1 ISO 200 f/8.0 3 seconds 18-135mm (EFL 52mm)