Friday, July 30, 2010

Shadows and Patterns

Strong, shadows, subtle shadows, shadow shapes and today: shadows and patterns.  Next to reflections, shadows are one of my favorite self assignments to photograph.
Remember the dog on the 'lace' sidewalk in Valparaiso, Chile?  Well, I decided to include this photo of what I saw initially  from above. Especially from this high perspective, it is easy to see the fence's lacy shadow cast  on the bricks.
(Canon EOS 5-D Mark II, Canon EF 24-105mm, 1/60 @ f 11, ISO 200)  

This lantern image was made in Namibia at the Mushara lodge. Tired from a long day of safari and full from a wonderful meal, I headed back to my room for a good night's sleep.  However, on my way back to my room I was so taken with the beautiful patterns made by the lanterns along the way, I extended my full day of photography into the night! I think the shots I made were worth missing a few hours of sleep...  (Canon EOS 5-D Mark II, Canon EF 24-105mm, 1/8 sec. @ f 5.6, ISO 1600)

This is shot I had previsualized and set up in the studio to experiment.  In fact, I ended up with dozens of images of springs and their shadows after hours of play.  I like the simplicity of this one best.  Looking at an ordinary spring from the top, it looks like concentric circles of metal.  Hit it with strong side light and the fun curly Q patterns emerge!  (Canon EOS 1-D Mark II, 50 mm lens, 1/100 sec. @ f 16, ISO 200)

And, finally, back in Namibia at the diamond mining ghost town of Kolmanskop.  The shadows in this deserted house were enough to give anyone a migraine!  This scene reminded me of something from the twilight zone.  Had I been there on a cloudy day, I never would have brought this interesting shadow pattern image home with me.
(Canon EOS 5-D Mark II, Canon EF 16-35mm, 1/100 sec. @ f 16, ISO 400)

Friday, July 23, 2010

~The Brickyard 400~

It's that time of year year again when the roar of the engines of the NASCAR sprint cup converge on Speedway, Indiana for the running of the Brickyard 400!  This race has been held annually at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway since 1994 and is the highest attended NASCAR event of their season.

I combed my archives for an image to feature in honor of the race.  This image of Steve Park's Pennzoil pit crew was made at the 1998 race.  We had amazing seats above and across from the pits where we saw all the action on and off the track.  During a regular pit stop of the Pennzoil Team, I wanted to capture the speed at which the crew was able to fuel up and change all four tires.  I slowed my shutter speed to blur the frantic activity of the crew members.  Blurring their motion adds a feel of their urgency to get the job done fast.  I also like the irony showing a static race car and moving people. (shouldn't it be the other way around???) This image was made on slide film so I am unable to share the technical data.  (Oh, how accustomed to metadata we have become!)

(Canon EOS 1-V, Canon 75-300mm IS lens, Fuji Provia 100,
settings unknown)

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Friday, July 16, 2010

Subtle Shadows and Patterns

Returning to the theme of "shadows," I decided to post more images which show the soft and subtle side shadows.  Soft shadows result from a diffused light source.

This image was made from the doorway of a lighthouse on the Oregon coast.  I liked how the crystal shadows spread across the wall and are soft enough to let the pattern of the antique wall paper show through. 
(Canon EOS 1-D Mark II N, Canon EF 24-105mm lens, 1/40 sec @ f 8.0, ISO 400)

One just never knows when a photo op will arise...This image was made in a restaurant in Alaska (on my way to the ladies room, believe it or not! )  I was visually drawn to the recognizable shapes from a lighted display in an adjoining gift shop 'projected' onto the brilliantly colored wall.
(Canon EOS 1-D, Canon EF 24-105mm lens, 1/10 sec @ f 4.0, ISO 640)
In Valparaiso, Chile, I was photographing the patterns of the fence shadows which looked (to me) like paths made of lace.  I came to a place where a sleeping dog was decorated by the patterned shadows. If you have been following my blog for a while, you will realize that this image was a 'double themed' find for me: shadows AND dogs!
(Canon 5D Mark II, Canon EF 24-105mm lens, 1/80 sec @ f 10, ISO 400)

Friday, July 9, 2010

Proud to Be an American...

This past Monday, I attended the Carmel, Indiana Independence Day Parade.  The weather was scorching hot, but the streets were lined with people who braved the blazing sun and heat for the festivities.  As in years past, various colorful marching bands, civic groups, and merchants marched with pride down the main streets of Carmel. 
Traditionally, as this year, the final entries marching by were members of our armed forces.  A recording of Lee Greenwood singing "Proud to Be An American" accompanied the marching troops and floats.  The spectators stood and cheered for our heroes with flags waving. The emotion of the moment brought tears to my eyes and gave me goosebumps, in spite of the heat.  
As the various floats passed by, one of the soldiers made direct eye contact with me.  I raised my camera and was given a direct, heartfelt, proud and genuine salute. 
The citizens of Carmel were cheering to thank and honor our troops, yet this young man returned the favor, speaking volumes of appreciative gratitude through his gesture and smile. I have chosen to share this image with you this week since it summed up the feelings of Independence Day, patriotism and American Freedom.

(Canon EOS 5D MarkII, Canon EF 24-105mm f 4.0L IS USM, 1/500 sec @ f 8.0, ISO 200)

Friday, July 2, 2010

Happy Birthday, America!

This July 4th marks the 234th birthday of the United States of America. 
The images below were made last year at the annual Carmel, Indiana 4th of July parade.  This year, I plan to attend once again with camera in hand to capture the spirit and patriotism of my home town. 
I would like to wish everybody in the USA a very safe and happy Independence Day!