Sunday, October 20, 2013

Smith Rock

Yesterday at o'dark thirty I drug myself out of bed to catch the sunrise at Smith Rock State Park. Even though I had never actually hiked the trail up to the top I already had the image I wanted to create in my mind. This can easily lead to disappointment. When you imagine a photo it's almost always better in your mind than in reality because you forget to account for the technically difficulties that exist in the real world. Needless to say I got the image above and it was almost exactly what I was looking for. Success! What I didn't expect was for my mind to be completely blown by the amount of color and the spectacular view from my location. So here's to being completely blown away by how beautiful nature really is.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

"Timing is everything..."

Timing is everything...

Those three words can be used in almost every aspect of life from relationships to job opportunities. Speaking photographically timing really is everything. Capturing the right moment, the peak of the action, can make or break a photo. I can't tell you how many peak action moments I've missed while shooting sports but that's why to keep shooting, so that you miss fewer of those moments. It doesn't always come down to seconds or minutes though. Sometimes the right moment is within hours and days.

The other day while sitting in the break room at work I saw a great photo of Mt Bachelor which is just outside Bend, Oregon where I currently live. I decided I wanted to create an image similar to it but make it my own so I picked a location and went for a drive that afternoon. Personally I would say that I missed the moment I was looking for because I was hoping for more sunlight on the mountainside. I miss calculated, Oops. Move on with life it's not the end of the word. Then as I noticed the moon in the image above I started to wonder about a nighttime image from the same location.

After messing up the timing once already that day I was determined not to let it happen again. After a quick look through a couple of the weather apps on my phone it was easy to see that that night would be the best. The moon would set a little after 2 am and the sky would be clear.
Although I would rather have been in bed at 2 am, knowing that I would have to be at work by 6:30 am that morning, I decided that the timing was right. If I wanted the image I had envisioned in my head I would have to make it happen that night because when you're working with the moon you only get the opportunity every 28 days. Around here, and during fall, 28 day could be the difference in hiking a mile off the road and hiking 10 miles from the nearest parking lot because snow has closed the road for the season. Was the image groundbreaking? No. Did I learn anything from the experience? Hell yeah, tons of things about lighting, timing, and location selection. So it was worth the extra effort, and the incredibly long day that fallowed. 

Thinking ahead to the next image I want to create I have already figured out that this Monday night will be the best time. The sun will set at 6:11pm and the moon will rise at 8:02pm. This will give me the light I need to hike to the location and then the moon will rise once the sky has gone dark. I could potentially do this again for the following three nights but why wait. 

With all that said you can't predict everything. You can only put yourself in the right place so that you can hopefully be there at the right time. With decent accuracy I can predict when a 'Kodak moment' will happen but with everything else in my life it's a strait up guess. I just hope I'm in the right place at the right time because I've noticed that time doesn't stop for anyone, and waiting for the right time isn't going to get you anywhere. So I hope that all who read this post (all three of you) go out and see if you can put yourselves in the in the right place at the right time. I'm still figuring out how to do that but I wouldn't get better at it if I didn't try.  

Sunday, August 25, 2013

A Day At The Races

Went to my first horse race last weekend. Really interesting sport that I think would be fun to shoot professionally but for now I'm just a spectator. Which is also really frustrating when you see a ton of potentially cool photos but can't get to the locations you want.