In a world of so many great photographers and writers, I am venturing into some unknown territories, leaving comfort zones, finally very willing to practice the art of seeing. By maintaining the practice of posting daily photos, I hope to continue learning about the possibilities that I trust are out there for the taking.
I’ve been busy. A week ago Saturday and this past Friday I shot two events. I’m not sure where I want to go with my photography but stretching the limit of my comfort level has taught me much about photography and myself. I’m sure more will be revealed as I have no idea where I’m headed, but I’m headed somewhere.
Pictured below are a few of the beautiful professional models Dr. Mark and, his wife, Val had at their annual fundraiser here at Mission Hills Country Club.
We stopped hiking for a bit as Jen repeatedly ran back down the hill while I tried to get my off camera flash (using a 3′ coiled E-TTL cord) to record a trailing image behind her. I thought I was using 2nd curtain sync but wasn’t. I was using 1st curtain sync where the flash fires immediately after the first curtain is fully open. In first curtain sync Jen runs, I flash, and the ambient light creates a “ghost image” that appears to come out of the front of her. That’s not what I wanted. I wanted the “ghost image” to follow her. This morning’s flash exercise was frustrating because I thought I’d chosen 2nd curtain sync when I was in first curtain sync AND when I thought I’d chosen 2nd curtain sync I’d actually put the camera into high-speed synch (which is used in bright sun, not in the darkness before the sun rises – like this morning). Using hss consumes 2.5 stops of flash power. “In hss the camera changes the way that the Speedlite flash fires.” I didn’t know I was in hss and was confused by the results I was getting. I will definitely be trying this again. Last week when I shot Jen running I also made this same mistake but hadn’t picked up on it. So……there is progress in my awareness at least:-) Here is the photographer that I am learning about Canon’s flash system from: http://www.sylarena.com/.
A couple of 5 bracket merged (using Efex Pro HDR) shots. I bracketed the shots because even though the light was pretty this morning it was doing nothing for me.
Moon over San Jacinto.
View of the San Gorgonio Pass with the I-10 windmills in the background. Another HDR.
Jen and I met to shoot leading lines for our class near the fenced stretch of sand just west of Costco on Dinah Shore Dr.
Hmmmmm, I wonder why Jen put her lens cap in the sand:-)
A quick last minute dinner got us to our nearby location with only a half hour of sun before it dropped behind the distant San Jacinto lower mountains and San Gorgonio Pass. This spot had looked like a good site to shoot but turned out not great.
So……we improvised. I’ve been meaning to bring the off camera flash setup consisting of a Speedlight, tripod, swivel holder, flash mount and 30 foot camera to flash cable (forgot the name), and did bring this time. So as the pic below shows, Jen was a great subject for the setting sun flash set up.
A Palm Springs hike near where Jen lives is where I lost 5 pounds in sweat this morning. Even at 5:45am it was hot and HUMID!
I think I need to look at more magazines or others work for posing ideas.
The Lyken Trail goes straight up.
After the hike, and since we were in downtown Palm Springs, we drove over to see and photograph the Marilyn Monroe statue. In October, a friend who dresses up as Marilyn, acts like Marilyn, sings like Marilyn, wants me to photograph her with the statue. My friend will be in full look a like Marilyn mode. Since I had not seen the Marilyn statue and wanted to see what I’d be dealing with when my friend arrives for her photo shoot, I took some shots.
Here is the overview shot.
A closer shot. All shots out of my camera this morning were taken with a Canon 5D Mark II, fitted with a Canon EF 50mm 1.2L USM lens.
Jen took me across the street to show me something special…….
This plaque describes how Jen’s Grandpa, John Porter Clark, designed this first permanent home of the Palm Springs Library, opened February, 1941.
Jen standing in front of her Grandpa’s building.
The front of the Library.
Once in downtown Palm Springs we both got excited with all the possible photo ops. We decided we’d come down here once a week and shoot. Today we found some special little spots:
Jen is not only learning her camera, compostion and exposures but ways to get out of comfort zone to pose as a model for me……..(without giggling!)
We love the blue stairs.
Not far from the corner and the Library we found the inside of a unique building. There were doves living inside.
Walking through the interior office structure and out the other side, we found these stairs on the sidewalk.
If you missed seeing the fireworks tonight, I’ve uploaded a slideshow of more of the fireworks taken at the Palm Springs from the Mesquite Golf Course. Click on the highlighted link below.
All shots on a tripod using a shutter cable release. Canon EOS 7D Lens -70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM Settings: Manual mode/manual esposure set to infinity. ISO 200, Esposure 2.0 sec at f/11, 70mm Processed in Adobe LIghtroom and Silver Efex Pro 2.
Same camera and lens. ISO 200, Exposure 3.0 sec at f/11, 70 mm.
Trying to capture motion shots here by panning with vehicles racing by on the I-10 Freeway. I will be going back to try this method some more. I was using a 70-200mm lens at 70mm on the Canon 7D (which makes the focal length of 70mm 1.6 times longer – whatever that is). ISO 100, 1/20 sec at f/19. Background is so important. I’d like to scout out better backgrounds. Timing the pan at 1/20 sec with the fast moving freeway traffic, or any movement for that matter, takes some getting used to and I’m not there yet.
Jen #1. It was soooo windy by the windmills off the I-10 last night. Keeping our eyes open was a struggle. I enjoyed watching Jen dance around in the sand just off the freeway. The wind was like music to her. She loves movement.
See what I mean about Jen enjoying the windy night?
Now if I could get Jen relaxed (like she is here) to look at the camera and not make funny faces because she feels uncomfortable.
Looking back east for the 3 minutes of interesting color.
Five feet away from the freeway cars, Jen takes in the setting sun.