My photo
... is a freelance photographer working in Middle Georgia

Monday, August 30, 2010

High School Football Has Begun!!!!

High School football has begun for another year. Would think that after all these years I would be tired of shooting it.  Wrong.

It is so much easier now than forty years ago. The new technology: autofocus, 300f2.8 lenses, the ability to shoot at a very high ISO. Don't think there is any high school stadium in our area where we can't shoot available light.

And no rushing back to the darkroom to process six of seven rolls of film. Then we had to make prints and hand deliver them to the Sports desk.

My first game was Tattnall and Southwest Georgia. For my first game I did ok. I had usable photos. My timing was a bit off. THis past Friday I shot Houston County at Perry. The rains stopped before the first kickoff so I stayed dry. I did take my rain gear. Last week I forgot my poncho and stuff.

One thing that has not changed over the years. Every year I have a least one nice photo that I can't use because the players number is left off the roster. The top photo falls into that category. The runner is Number 17 for Houston County. He was not on the roster.

Hope that will be the only one this year.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

HD Video With The D90

I have always enjoyed playing with video, but too often I would be shooting stills and think “Hey, this would be great video.” It was always a pain to swap back and forth between video and still cameras. And so often, the video camera was no where near.

Last week I was in the floor photographing Deborah and our grandson Garrett. Our living room is a bit dark, even a mid-day. I was using the D90 with my old 20mmf2.8, a fine prime lens. I was shooting at 2000 ISO. I decided some video for great-grandma would be a good idea and almost got up to get the video camera. I knew by the time I went down the hall to the office and got the video camera, cranked it up and started shooting, Garrett would be in a different mode.

So I punched two buttons and captured the attached video with the D90, HD video with sound.

Pretty handy that the newer DSLR’s can capture really good video. The ability to shoot at higher ISO is cool, so is the ability and the look you get using the DSLR lenses. I have tried doing video with every lens from my 10mm fisheye up through a 300mm. Pretty cool. I have never had a wide enough lens on a video camera, now I do.
Nikon’s newest is the D 3100. It also boosts the ISO to 12,800. Can’t wait to play with that puppy.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Politically Correct

A couple of Saturday's ago I covered the annual Sonny Perdue Fish Fry in Perry.
I needed a good Sonny photo since it is his fish fry. but I also needed to shoot Gubernatorial candidates Karen Handel and Nathan Deal. The two were facing off the next Tuesday in the Republican primary.

Photographing the candidates is fairly simple at events like this. You just wait for them to arrive, and follow them around grabbing pictures of them shaking hands and kissing babies.  Deal came fairly early and Handel was delayed. That gave me plenty of time to get good shots of him before she arrived.

I was waitong by the door when she came in and followed her as she hit the crowd. I had several nice shots of her, including the one below with Judy Smith. A few minutes later, as Handel moved between two groups of people, someone yelled, "Hey, I'm over here, I am the real Karen Handel." You never know what to expect any more. Last Saturday Nancy Grace had two armed guards standing over her during her Macon book signing. Anyway, a Handel supporter, David Bachman, was covering his face with a magazine featuring Handel's lifesize photo on the cover. I stopped, laughed, and took his picture.

I figured we need a laugh this election season.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

A First Birthday Portrait

Last week I was asked by my friend Ellen Foster to do a picture of her granddaughter Raelynn.
Ellen is a very creative person and had come up with an idea for the picture, including great background and props.We did pictures using ballons, bubbles, and even a really messy cupcake. We shot with two little outfits.

I was really happy with the images. I used one flash and a white umbrella for lighting. Ellen and her daughter Casey helped position Raelynn and kept her smiling. She is a very photogenic young lady. 

When I was toning the top photo, I decided it would be kinda interesting to make the image black and white but keep a bit of color. I kept color in her hair bow and two of the ballons. I used the desaturation tool in photoshop and then painted using the history brush. 

When I got to the cupcake photos, I knew I had to give it a go as well. This one was a bit harder because I wanted to leave color in the blts of icing on her chest. Turned out pretty well.

Happy Birthday Raelynn.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The First Day of School #40?

OKay, I am not sure about the number, but I think yesterday when I did the first day of school in Houston County, this may have been Year 40. Man, that is a long time. I have done a bunch, but I still have a lot of fun covering the first day.

The best years have involved the younger kids. There is so much excitment, and anticipation with both the young students and parents. Usually the school staffs share in that anitcipation and excitment as well.  This year I was at Perdue Primary in Houston County. Principal Leslie Schultz welcomed me into her school, and let me do my thing.

I still look forward to the covering the first day of school, I am as excited as my subjects. It is a milestone in the lives of parents and kids, especially the first day of school for kindergarten kids. It is cool to be there documenting the moment.

I was a bit worried about the day, my 80-200f2.8 is away for repairs. I rely on that fast lens when shooting candids like the one above. I had no choice but to use my 70-300 zoom. It is a slow lens, a 4.5/5.6, depending on where between 70 and 300mm you happen to be. I shot at 1600 ISO and had enough light to get by. The lens is light enough I got by shooting at 1/60th of a second.

The photo above is my favorite from the morning's shoot. Amanda Williams was kissing her son Aidan goodbye. Typical little boy, kissing Mom while still involved in what he had been doing, which was coloring. He didn't put his crayon down, and I framed the shot so their kiss was between his hands.

Not bad for my 40th year.

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