Monday, February 21, 2005

Waiting For Spring

Originally uploaded by argusmaniac.
I shot this a year ago in a barn that is being preserved at Matthaei Botanical Gardens. The barn itself is over 100 years old, and had suffered from neglect for a number of years before UM decided it was worth doing some reroofing and repair. Otherwise, it would have been in a very sad state within a few years.

The barn is now pretty well cleaned up inside, and I shot this photo with my Nikon F4, mounted on a tripod, and in aperture priority mode. I think the shadows came out pretty well, especially with the amount of light streaming in through the window. What the photo really needs is a human element though. A model with the ladder would be a good start.

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Depth of Field

Poppy Pods
Originally uploaded by argusmaniac.
One of the harder things to teach new photographers is depth of field (DOF) and out of focus (OOF) considerations when making a photograph. DOF is controlled largely by the aperture, however, the exposure characteristics must be taken into account. Good DOF depends on a small aperture, hence a slower shutter speed. The focal length of the lens determines how much of the background will be in focus. Obviously, if you want foreground and background to be in focus, you go for a wide-angle lens. If you want a great OOF background, then opt for a telephoto. In this case, I used my Tamron 80-200mm zoom with a 2x diopter to get these poppy seed capsules close-up, yet rendering the background soft and OOF. Aperture was probably f16. I used a tripod and a lens shade, too. Image was made on Fuji Astia.

Sunday, February 13, 2005

What we see

If you want to try a fun exercise (not the calorie-burning kind) -- take one room in your house, one camera, one lens, and ask yourself what do you see that's interesting and can shoot in 15 minutes? Look at things close-up, down low, whatever. The point is for you to try and see things that you never noticed before. See things. Feel them in your brain. Look through the viewfinder and don't have a specific object in mind. You might just surprise yourself.

A bit of a clock, photographed with my Minolta S-1 APS and 50mm macro (yes, that's correct, an APS camera!)

My wife's keys for her workplace

You'll be amazed at how different things look when you really do look at them.

Friday, February 04, 2005

Wonderful Morning

Originally uploaded by argusmaniac.
On Wednesday (Feb. 2), we had ideal condditions for the formation of thick hoarfrost. Ice fog which quickly coalesced onto anything that was cold. I took the bus into work as usual, hopped off at my usual stop, and spent 30 minutes shooting things with my Fuji FinePix S7000. Anything that was stationary and cold, became an anchor point for a multitude of ice crystals. This pine could be anywhere - Yosemite, Yellowstone, Isle Royale, or just somewhere in the middle of nowhere. But it wasn't - it was right in front of the UM Museum of Zoology, where I work. It just goes to show you that nature's beauty can surprise you, even right outside your door.