A really big bang

Enjoy the sights and sounds of the holiday!

Hubris and lying cameras, plus fun

Sometimes I actually visualize a scene I want to put into a photograph, make the images and then discover later it just isn’t what I expected.  Silly when you realize every image can be seen immediately on the back of the camera but something about that little 3″ screen just doesn’t cut it compared to the computer monitor later.   It’s really difficult to judge perspectives on the back of the camera – what appears to be nicely proportioned later turns out to be badly off.

When I saw where the sun was setting at this park in Colorado Springs I knew there was a great composition to show the line of upturned rocks stretching toward the horizon.  The sun would cut across them sharply, giving good contrast from one side to the other and the line would just stick out obviously from the trees, drawing the eye upward to the sky.  I climbed a rock and set up my composition, waiting for the sun to fall to just the right point, and fired off several images at different exposures because I knew it would take HDR to get the dynamic range I wanted.

Well, exposure-wise it turned out pretty much the way I wanted.  And the composition starts out good – the rock ledge at the bottom intrudes on the trees and catches your eye quickly.  It points to the next rock outcropping, bright in the sun, which leads to the next outcropping, which leads to ….. where?  The distant outcroppings just don’t show up enough in the image to continue carrying your eye.  They became little dots of reddish-orange in the distance.  Ouch.  So much for thinking the image on the back of the camera was telling me the truth about composition.

Now I realize I should have used a longer lens to pump up the size of the distant rocks.  Perhaps a vertical panoramic, stitching images from bottom to top.  There was little wind so movement wasn’t a problem.  But it looked right on the camera’s screen!!!

So, lesson learned.  When I’ve got an idea and the means/time to compose it, work with different approaches; use various lenses, single and panoramic versions, compose tighter, expose differently to make sure the essential elements stand out.

Frustrating.  I’m still not seeing like my camera sees.  But I’ll remember this episode next time.

Celebrating the 4th of July, some fireworks.

The first two were taken in Pittsburgh, PA in the early 1980’s with a Kodak Brownie box camera using 616 color print film (no longer available) and scanned into digital form.  The last is a digital image from my Olympus, taken in Traverse City, MI almost 30 years later.  The fun never goes out of fireworks!

Thanks for the memories

Olympus E-3, 14-54mm, 1.3 sec, f/9, ISO100

The home of baseball in Omaha and the college world saw its last game Thursday.  Rosenblatt Stadium will go the way of so many iconic ball fields as the desire for more modern facilities by the powers that run baseball as a business overrule the sentiments of the patrons who provide the money.

I only attended a few games here, mostly during the College World Series that is an annual pilgrimage for fans nationwide.  Being there is an intimate event because of the size and friendly nature of people who go.  The same people will see their way to the new ballpark downtown but it’ll be years before there’s a hint of the same atmosphere.

Better fans than me can describe what it’s meant:

WSJ Article

Local TV station news article