It’s been quite a year! So much has happened since the summer of ’17, none of which included posting…a music festival, extended-family vacation in Maine, senior photos, my Mom’s unexpected passing, we got a dog, lots of connecting with nature and humans, an excursion to Philly, a family wedding (first time as a wedding photographer), Holidays, a vacation to DC and the Outer Banks, Lots of running (no photos – you’re welcome), and pictures of niece and nephews just before their family grows from five to six…
As the weather turned warmer and days grew longer, work’s busy season emerged, leaving less time for setting up and editing photos. It came in fits and starts for a time, but by June, the well had run dry.
If not a robust 365, then perhaps a nice 52-week project? Nope!
Despite the dearth of images over the course of the past three months, I do feel the intention of this project was met and that it has served its purpose in turning around a level of creative stagnation.
These images represent a handful of days in June and early July (I have yet to edit those from the Fourth).
Look for this blog to continue with a little less structure and hopefully a bit more regularity.
Another long break between posts… since the last, we have celebrated Mothers’ Day and the Boy’s birthday, taken a number of walks through town and across the river, and experienced one rainy day after another and still no photos. Until today…
Another walk around town, though most of the images came from right at the homestead. Today also features a guest photographer. I grabbed a few shots, then Lady took a spin around with the Pentax Super Takumar:
A return to warm weather yesterday, but back below normal temperatures today – at least the sun came out. The boy came over today with a friend and we cooked out, giving me the opportunity for the first gratuitous grill/food shots of the spring. I was going for more of an editorial feel on this one
The light was good, with partial filtering through patchy clouds, making it fairy even and cutting down on shadows. The sun was also low enough to hit the back side of our white house, creating a giant reflector that further helped light up the grilling surface.
I wanted a really shallow depth of field, so I used the Canon 50mm f/1.8 instead of the 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 – the reach of the zoom would have been better for keeping some distance from the heat and grease, but I wouldn’t have achieved the look I wanted.
Mixed weather – sunny, cloudy, then sunny again, then back to cloudy…
Saturdays are typically spent in errands and work around the house and that was the case this day too. Once that was all done, we decided to take a pre-dinner walk on the Norwottuck Rail Trail on a section we hadn’t yet walked. The wind picked up and the clouds got darker, but after an afternoon with sun and temperatures in the 80’s, the cooler air made for a comfortable walk.
Mid-spring is a transition time…dull brown remnants of winter mix with spring flowers and bright green foliage in various stages of bloom. Every so often we came across white flowering shrubs and vines…those grabbed my attention.
Spring rain. Soft and even light, emerging greens, dampened sounds, drops on windows…there are a lot of things I like about rainy days. Most appealing from a photographic standpoint is the potential for capturing reflecting light in water and that had been the goal for the day – I looked for photo ops everywhere I went (walking, driving, whatever).
Instead, when I got home – jelly beans!
We have plenty of plants and trees and decorative objects around the yard that would have made great subjects in the rain and when I got home I had a plan to hit the yard. But, as often happens, that plan quickly got chucked once I saw the jelly beans. I grabbed a handful, placed them on a cutting board, and placed that on the back of a chair in front of a window. A pop of color against the drab backdrop out the window.
Temperatures in the 70’s for the second day in a row – spring feels like it’s going to stick around!
We took a long walk before dinner and caught some gorgeous light. I held off taking photos early on, knowing the sun would be lower and softer by the time we headed home, and got a series of beautifully backlit images – similar to what I was trying to do on the 11th, but more successful this time around.
While editing the images, I played with processing each one in a few different ways and was pleased with how varying the color and warmth just a little bit really changed the feel of each. Putting them together in quad strips, moving from “original” to black and white accentuated that.
Easter. Wonderful weather and time with family. I’m not particularly religious, though I do consider myself to be spiritual and, rather than squint through a lens all day, I tried to practice mindfulness and to remain present.
So, not too many photos – but here are a few of Garfunkel, taken with the 28-135mm lens.
I was asked to take photos of youth hockey evals for use on a league website. I’m not really set up for sports photography, but wanted to help and thought it would be a good opportunity to work on technique. I’ve only shot in an ice rink one other time and expected some challenges with the light and limitations of my equipment. With my Canon 28-135mm, I knew I would want to shoot as close to f8 and at least 1/200 shutter speed.
While the ice was pretty well lit, I ended up at ISO 800 and f6.3, 1/160 or f5.6, 1/250 depending on the end of the rink the kids were at. I underexposed by about a stop the whole way through to keep the shutter speed up and fixed it in post, using Lightroom.
…getting better – only a week since the last post! This is another from around the yard. We have three rather large forsythia bushes next to the driveway and this one was catching the evening light as I pulled into the drive, giving it a painterly feel that was so inviting.
I grabbed my camera off the front seat and snapped a few backlit by the sun. Because I was shooting at f1.8, just about everything dropped away out of focus. This felt like the only keeper for what I was trying to achieve… I tried both color and black & white.
Again, the 50mm STM, though I increasingly find myself drawn back to the 28-135 at times and will need to really consider changing some of the parameters of this project.