Archive | March 2010

Sunday March 28, 2010

A local cemetery

Wow!  Another month has come and gone.  My daffodils and crocus’ are up, I’m looking forward to seeing them bloom.

This past week has gone by very quickly.  I’ve been spring cleaning so extra time has been limited.  This weeks project was supposed to be “urban nature”, I did manage to get a few pictures but again I feel like it’s just the wrong time of year for this. Some of the examples in my book were old vintage cars and wild animals within the city looking for shelter.  It was definitely a challenge, I think urban nature is more enjoyable when there are plenty of colours to see and at this point everything is still very much brown and grey.   I did however see a coyote beside the highway, unfortunately I did not have my camera and even if I did I couldn’t have stopped as I was in the clover leaf getting on the highway.

My favourite picture this week is of the school bus.  My friend showed me how to turn a picture all black and white except for one thing in the image.  It’s not something I would do all the time but I really liked it for the school bus especially since everything in the area is of no colour anyway.

My family and I went Geocaching yesterday, the little adventure took us into a local cemetery.  When we walked through the gates there was a tree-lined lane way, it was absolutely beautiful.  See above picture.  I can’t wait till the trees bloom, I will revisit the cemetery and take another picture at that point.  I bet it will be even more beautiful.

My next assignment is “city streets”, I already have some ideas in mind…Wish me luck!!

Happy Snapping…

~ Linda

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Sunday March 21, 2010

My first crocus!!!

I went outside this morning to check to see if there were any sign of my crocus’ and I found ONE!!! (see above picture).  My daffodils are up as well, I am elated.

My photography assignment this week was High Dynamic Range (HDR).  It is a process that takes a series of identical images of varying exposures and layers them one on top of another.  Because a camera does not have the tonal range that your eye has performing this procedure allows you to make an image as vibrant as what your eye actually sees.  We have all taken pictures and afterward  said  “the picture doesn’t do the scene justice”…that’s where HDR comes into play, it does the picture justice and then some.  So this is what I attempted to do this week.  My first couple of tries were complete failures but I figure it’s all part of the learning process, by mid-week I had gotten the hang of how it works however I’m afraid the timing of year was all wrong, I will keep trying when the weather gets better.

We went out with the kids to the park on Friday so that I could take some pictures of them and on the drive home I had an idea.  I wondered what it would look like if I slowed the shutter speed down and then took a picture while driving, the result is the picture that looks like a watercolour.  I was just playing around and was  delighted when I saw this  so I wanted to share it.  It’s the best part about having a digital camera, you can play with everything and anything and there are no developing fees, just hit delete.

The last picture is of a little patch of long grass in my back yard where these teeny tiny mauve coloured flowers grow, when the sun shines they open right up, unfortunately it was cloudy when I took this.

Since flower season is upon us I am going to do my best to deny my natural urge to take pictures of them…at least sometimes anyway.  I love to take pictures of flowers but I have to stay focused, this project was about broadening my horizons…there are more things to photograph other than flowers.

Today my family and I went on our first Geocaching hunt, it is a cheap, fun way to get exercise and have family time.  If you’re unsure what Geocaching is Google it.  I am going to be taking my camera on our hikes, hopefully we’ll come across some interesting things to share here!

Happy spring everyone!

Have a great week…

~Linda

Sunday March 14, 2010

My Favourite flowers.

We’re half way through March already, no sign of my crocus’ yet.  I hope the squirrels didn’t get them despite the blood meal I coated the bulbs in, time will tell.

This week was fun for me.  The lesson this week was still-life.  Not really having clear idea of what still-life was exactly I started off the week on my computer looking up definitions and photograph examples.  Still-life by definition is the art of creating a picture  rather than just taking a picture, still life typically includes flowers, fruit, bowls and or glassware .  So now that I learned exactly what it is it was time to have some fun.  My first picture this week was an oil burner, kind of boring but I liked the design on the burner and I also liked how the candle illuminated it and showed the natural beauty of the soap stone.  For most of the week I turned to flowers, anyone who knows me knows that I love to take pictures of flowers so I was truly in my glory with this.  I went to a local florist, a store I have never been in and honestly after the rotten attitude and bad customer service I will never go back to this particular florist again.  I paid $22 for a dozen Gerber daisies some of which weren’t even healthy.  Oh well, lesson learned.

In between the flowers I managed to snap a picture of my little guy while he was eating his breakfast, I know this technically is not still-life, but it was so cute I just had to include it.  The rest of the pictures this week were staged, I found a great deal of pleasure in doing this.  Having more control over my photographs is so liberating, I don’t think I will feel so frustrated anymore when I have nothing to photograph because I know now that I can just create a picture.  I will definitely do more research and practice in this particular area.

The salt and pepper…I first did this picture on a white background, it was  tedious with the spoons and trying not to spill so even though I wanted to do it on a black background as well I opted not too because I didn’t want to empty the spoons and change the background and then refill and set up all the spoons again.  Well, I ended up emptying the spoons, changing the background, refilling and setting up the spoons again because I loved it on the white and I just knew I had to try it on the black, it would have driven me nuts until I did, so I did it and I totally loved it more than the white.

I am looking forward to where the next chapter will take me.  I am so happy that I bought this book, it’s already opened my eyes to so much and I’m only on the third week.

Hope you (and your little ones if you have them) have a fantastic March Break.  I signed  my kids up at the local art centre, they will be there getting dirty with all sorts of crafty stuff, needless to say they are looking forward to it, maybe I’ll take pictures of their artwork to share here.

Until next Sunday…

~Linda

Sunday March 7, 2010

I left you all last week with the anticipation of the Men’s Team Canada olympic hockey game happening that afternoon, it was the gold medal game against the United States and WE WON!!!!!  I was on the edge of my seat the entire time and when they won I literally cried tears of joy, it was at that very moment that I was truly proud to be a Canadian and so my picture for Monday was of the Canadian flag.

I purchased a book from Chapters last year on photography, it’s very much like a text-book in that there are lessons followed by assignments.  This past week I requested the help of said book.  The first assignment is on city lights and that is why all my pictures from this week are of lights in the night.  The first one I did was of the cars on the highway.  Light streams, the result of slow shutter speeds.   It was rather cold that evening and being on an overpass it was also quite windy and because I don’t have a very sturdy tripod I did have blur from camera shake.  I wouldn’t mind trying this again when the traffic is a little busier and definitely less windy, there were too many breaks in the streams and I had already had the shutter speed set at 2 seconds…mixed with wind equals pictures that are blurry.  Oh well, I still do like the way it turned out.

The remaining pictures continued on in this fashion.  It was nice having a direction instead of wandering around aimlessly searching for something to photograph by days end.  In this book there are 22 assignments and so that’s what I will be doing for the next 21 weeks.  I have not even looked ahead in the book so see what’s coming, that information will be revealed to me when I begin that weeks lesson.

The lesson for this coming week is still life, something I don’t think I’m very good at but this will give me a chance to research it and practice with it.

The picture above is of the car lights on the highway purposely put out of focus, the shapes and the colours fascinate me.  Enjoy!

Hope you all have a fantastic week, last one before March Break!!

Incase you interested in the book I am following here are the details of it…

Title:  Digital Photography Master Class

Author:  Tom Ang

~ Until next Sunday…

Linda