Saturday, May 30, 2009

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Thanks Des

This year Des and I decided that it was just easier for each of us to buy our own anniversary presents and pretend it was from the other person (much easier that way). Des got herself some fitness equipment and I bought a... lens (I know big shock).

for those that are interested it is a 50mm f 1.8 lens. at 1.8 it has a really shallow depth of field so you can isolate parts of your subject really well. In addition, it is 4x faster then the "kit" type lenses that come with cameras, meaning it lets more light into the camera. it's not the most expensive lens (actually it's one of the cheapest lens canon sells) but I wasn't prepared to spend 4x the price on the next best one (f 1.4) or 12x on the top of the line one (f 1.2).

Here is a sample shot I took to demonstrate to Des why I bought it:

And again for those interested. Here is how I shot the above image:

I used an old cardboard box, 2 sheets of white paper, 2 sheets of glossy craft paper and some flashes. I cut holes in the sides for the light to shoot through and covered them with the white paper. Then I cut a hole on the top and covered it with one of the glossy pieces of paper in case I need to have light come from above in the future. Than I taped the last glossy page to the back wall and let it curve toward the camera to create a seamless background.

Thanks again Des! How did you ever know this was the lens I never talked about but wanted you to buy?

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Ben's place?

Ben and I were driving home yesterday after baseball practice. As we pasted the local bowling alley (which is currently closed and for sale) Ben and I had the following conversation:

- Dad, when is that bowling alley going to open again?
- I don’t know, I think it needs a bunch of things fixed before it can open again
- What needs to be fixed? The thing that sucks the balls up?
- I don’t know, I just heard that there is bunch of things
- How about some of the signs?
- Maybe
- Or the floor where the balls roll down?
- You mean the lanes?
- Ya the lanes, it must be the lanes that are broken!
- That’s possible
- Why don’t you buy it and fix it up so we can go bowling?
- I think there is a lot of stuff to fix and I don’t have enough money to buy a bowling alley and fix it up
- Go to the bank and ask them, they’ll give you money
- How much money do you think I’ll need to ask for?
- Oh I don’t know, maybe $163 dollars, that’s a lot of money
- I’m not sure but I might need more then that buddy

Oh to be young again and to think $163 is a lot of money. Who knows, the bowling alley has been up for sale for a while. Maybe I’ll finance Ben and he can make an offer on the place. He wouldn’t even need to change the sign out front.

I can see it now…
Hey mister, I’ll give you $163.50 cash right now for your property. What do say?

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Old Wheel

Here is an example of what you can do to fix a blown out sky. On the day I shot this the sky was overcast and gray (not to interesting). I couldn't sit around waiting for the clouds to break up so I composed the image and planned to spruce it up in post. If the sky did look like this when I took the picture I would have used a graduated filter (or 2) to get the same effect.

To get the final image I brought the original photo into Photoshop, cut out the sky and brought in the sky from another photo. Once the photos were layered on top of each other I used a digital graduated filter to get the effect I was looking for

The way I look at is if you know what you would have needed to do in the field to get this shot if/when it presented itself then you can create what you saw in your mind when it doesn't. Does that make sense?

Here are the images I used

here are the layers involved

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

A Day At The Museum

On Monday Des and I took the kids to the Royal Tyrrell Museum in Drumheller. Ben had been asking us all Sunday if we could go to Dinosaur Provincial Park (which is close by) and we thought if we were going to see dinosaurs we might as well see lots of them in a warm environment (Monday was cold).
One of the funniest part of trip was when we got to a part in the museum that covered under water creatures. In that area they have a glass floor so you can see the creatures underneath you. Rachel could not understand how we were able to walk across a room that appeared to not have a floor. she was shuffling her feet until she would get close enough to take a huge step onto one of the support beams in the floor. Then she would take another hesitant step off the beam thinking she was going to fall through the floor and unto the creatures. We tried to get her to touch the floor and told her it was glass but she wouldn't listen until we were out of there.

All in all we had fun. Until Ben got chased by some Valasa Raptors and we had to leave.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

4 months and 17 days old

for those interested: shot with Canon 40D (1/250 @ f 2.8, 70mm), Canon 430EZ flash
(camera right attached to DIY beauty dish), triggered with pocket wizard plus transmitter.

Note to grandparents:
I will be posting pics of your other munchkins in a few days as soon as we can get them to stay still long enough. That's the nice thing about Sarah, she's not mobile... yet

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

A little time on my hands and my run-in with the law

I went to the church last night to see if any one would show up to play some basketball but no one showed. Life happen and so does the weather. So I took advantage of the dark and gloomy clouds that were hanging over Brooks and armed my self with a few supplies and headed out.

My first stop was a field on the East side of town. I was driving by the field earlier in the day and saw something that seemed peculiar... a fire hydrant. A big red metal hydrant (here in Brooks most of the hydrants are painted like cartoon characters or gumball machines amongst other things) just sitting there in a prairie field. Of course the fist thing that I thought of was photo op! (I know I'm strange you don't have to tell me, just love me the way I am). So when I found my self with a little time on my hands (hence the title) I took advantage of the opportunity with the following results:

After I spent some time alone in a field with a camera, a light up ten feet in the air and people driving by looking at me with a "what the" look on their faces, I decided to head down town to another spot that I have been wanting to shoot someone.... wait that didn't come out right. Aaaaaannnyyyy waaaayyyyy, I headed down town. Since I didn't have a ready subject I decided to shoot my self...ah crud I did it again.

during this time I had my run-in with the law. Come on, is it a crime to hang out in a back alley looking like this....

OK... maybe I did look a little sketchy.

In reality I think the officer that drove by a few times and then eventually parked across the street was was just interested in picking up a few photo tips... really.
I later walked over and showed him a few of the images and he just laughed.