Monday, June 13, 2011
Amazingly enough, I actually made it out to take a few pictures late last week and over the weekend. And no, this isn’t one of them. But I figured it’d be worth mentioning, so you can know what to expect once I finally get around to tossing them online. This weekend the weather appeared to finally be nice enough to allow the bugs to start coming out to play. So, I spent some time trying to take pictures of bees flying as they were either preparing to land on flowers, or just taking off from flowers. Turns out, it’s really hard. More on that later.
Also, late last week I went on an epic 14-hour adventure, chasing the northern lights. There was an aurora forecast that suggested that they should be visible from my latitude, so I went driving, hoping to find a location that was a) away from city lights, b) had a view of the northern sky, and c) wasn’t cloudy. I basically succeeded in those three after a lot of effort (I ended up at a location that, were you to drive straight there, would be just under 5 hours from where I live), but there were no northern lights to be found. BUT, I got some decent pics along the way, so you’ll see some of those eventually.
In the meantime, here’s a shot from Mayflower Gulch in Summit County, Colorado that I grabbed today just so that I’d have something to show you.
Notes: Canon EOS Rebel T1i, Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 lens. 1/250s, f/6.3, ISO 100. Focal length: 39mm.
Monday, August 30, 2010
Hello, dear readers! It’s Monday again! Woooooo!!!!! What, not feeling the enthusiasm?? Yeah, me neither. Sigh. I went out of town this last weekend though, that was cool. Headed up to Whistler, and did a little bit of hiking. That’s not where this picture is from though. More on that in a bit.
I can’t remember if I’ve mentioned this already or not, but I have a new (ish) rule of thumb: I refuse to look at my pictures on the big screen until at least a couple days have passed since I took them. Sounds like a weird self-imposed rule, right? Well, see, there’s a reason I had to do it. I’m always excited at the pictures I’m taking. For whatever reason, they always seem to look FANTASTIC on the little screen on my camera. So I take a few, and I get stoked that I got THE SHOT, and that forever after I’ll be finally satisfied that I captured the perfect image, and that I’ll get home and be able to retire the camera forever. But… it never quite works out that way. Ignoring for a minute the fact that taking pictures is just like a drug (you can never get enough! Even when you get the shot you dreamed of, it never satisfies you – you immediately start dreaming about your next hit.), for whatever reason when you look at them on the big screen, they’re never quite as sharp as you thought, or the color’s not quite right, or there’s a blemish that you didn’t see before, or you just missed the most interesting part of the mountain, whatever. And that just crushes my soul. It sucks the excitement for the pictures right out of me. I mean, these issues are usually very minor, and usually aren’t even noticeable at web-size. But, instead of going to bed riding the glow of “I got some AWESOME shots today!” I end up going to bed really sad, and then I don’t want to look at them again for weeks. On the other hand, if I just enjoy the euphoric high for the rest of the day or whatever, and wait until it fades away naturally, then I can approach the photographic results with a more level head. I’ve told myself I’ve had this rule for awhile, but I’ve only really gotten serious about enforcing it lately, the last few weeks or so. And it’s been working out GREAT! So, long story short, I’m not going to be looking at my pictures from this weekend for at least another day or two.
So, in the meantime, you get a picture from Colorado, from last summer. This was taken with my wide angle lens (Tokina 11-16) in a spot called Mayflower Gulch. It’s a really short trail (a mile-ish?), because I only had a tiny bit of time that day. The trailhead is a little ways south of Copper Mountain along highway 91 (which I believe has the nickname “Top of the Rockies Highway”). I think the trail keeps on going (or there’s probably several trail choices once you get to the gulch) but I didn’t have time for any of that. I was able to get to a nice setting, and that had to be good enough for me. My buddy Trevor (who lives up in Summit County) took me out there, after I asked for a short trail that would let me get some nice pics. This choice worked out perfectly!
Notes: Canon EOS Rebel T1i, Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 lens. 1/250s, f/9.0, ISO 100. Focal length: 12mm.
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Well, it’s Wednesday. Awesome, right? Yeah, exactly. Today’s picture is from Mayflower Gulch, which is a little ways up a little trail/4×4 road just off Highway something-or-other in Summit County, Colorado, the one that goes from Copper Mountain to Leadville. It’s a really nice alpine basin, with the standard set (for Colorado, anyway) of broken down, abandoned houses from long-gone miners. I suppose there are a couple trails that leave from right around here and explore more remote places too. But I didn’t have time for that when I was there.
The weather was kind of a mixed bag when I was there. No rain (not yet anyway), but clouds that were constantly moving through. That meant that most of the time I had in the actual basin was spent under cloud cover. That actually affects your pictures quite a bit, because it makes a surprisingly large difference in your exposure whether your foreground is in the sunlight or in the shade. Generally, I prefer sunshine as you can imagine (although if you can get one of either your foreground or your background in the sun and the other in the shade, it can provide some really nice contrast), and I would have preferred that for the day I was here, but alas, you take what you can get. As a result, I had to expose the shot more than I would have liked, which resulted in losing almost all of the color out of the sky. (A polarizing filter would have helped, but I don’t yet have one that fits my wide-angle lens, which is what I was using here.) I really like that little spash of sunshine on the peak there in the distance, without it I think it would have just kind of been washed into the background, leaving a much less interesting shot. This way, it’s kind of peeking out, saying “HEY! I’m here too, damnit.” Wait, your pictures don’t talk to you? Oh.. Weird.
Anyway, in an unusual moment of foresight, I’ve come to realize that tomorrow I’ll be posting a picture of a flower and a bug, and Friday is going to be a really nice shot of Mt. Baker. So be sure to stick around for that before you abandon the picture of the day for ever and ever. Until then…
Notes: Canon EOS Rebel T1i, Tokina 11-16mm lens. 1/250s, f/6.3, ISO 100. Focal length: 16mm.