Our family just back from a fun trip east for Spring Break. We flew into and out of Portsmouth, NH on Skybus – our first trip on the discount airline (our tickets were $35 each way). From there, we drove northwest around Lake Winnipesaukee (visiting Julie’s old camp in the process) and then onto Portland, Maine where we spent the night. The next day, we headed to Boston and spent the next several days seeing the sights. Of course, pictures tell a better story, so check out the photo gallery of the trip.
On March 7 and 8 of 2008, central Ohio was buried under the biggest snowfall on record for these parts. The prior record of snow in one day in Columbus had been 12.2 inches with 15.3 inches the record snowfall for a single storm. With this blizzard, the official snowfall on Saturday the 8th was 15.4 inches and the storm total over the two days was 20.4 inches at Port Columbus Airport. In our backyard, we seemed to max out at about 16 or 17 inches total from the storm. In between the shoveling and playing, we managed to snap a few pictures.
One of the family highlights of 2007 was a trip to Alaska. Julie, Matthew, and Cassady traveled via RV with Jamie and Dave. Mike flew up and met them for several days a few weeks later. Some of the best pictures from the trip have been captured in this photo album.
This is a picture of some coins I did this evening. I’m thinking of using it for this month’s Digital Story photo assignment submission contest. The topic for September is “circle” and I thought a close up of some coins might work. To make the shot, I put a plain white shee on my desk, setup a couple of coins on it, and mounted my camera (with flash) on a tripod. To accentuate the lighting and try to remove shadows, I had lights on the side and on top of the subject. Although I don’t have a true macro lens, I was able to use the 24-105 lens at maximum focal length for this. It’s capable of focusing fairly closely, though I couldn’t get closer than this without getting into trouble.
Today, Matthew and Julie were off doing DreamDinners together. This is a place where you prepare meals ahead of time, freeze them, and then use them for a decent meal without much preparation on the day you eat. While they were doing that, Cassady and I headed to Inniswood Metro Gardens. I had never been there before, despite having lived less than a mile away. It’s a pretty place with lots of beautiful flowers to see. This picture was taken with my 24-105mm lens set to maximum aperture in aperture priority mode with maximum focal length. The end result is a very nice diffuse background.
This picture was taken back in July during our camping trip (we go every year with a bunch of families from Church). As is apparent from this picture, the excursion was not withou precipitation and in fact we all ended up cutting the trip short by a day due to all the heavy rain. Nonetheless, one of the most enjoyable things for me over this past summer was watching the kids on their bikes. Cassady is still on training wheels, but I suspect that’s not true for long.
This picture is titled “A Dream Fulfilled”. My mother-in-law has always wanted to get an MG. Although this isn’t truly an MG (it’s built on top of a Volkswagon frame I think), this is still a very cool looking car. On Labor Day, she and my father-in-law brought it over to show us. Although I’m disappointed that her face was over-exposed, the rest of the image looks pretty good. To try and convey the timelessness of the car, I converted it to a Sepia tone. The image was shot in Program AE with my 24-105 lens.
This is my first picture of the day. I chose it because it was recently included on another website. Derek Story authors a podcast called The Digital Story that I listen to every week. It’s a terrific podcast and includes lots of great tips on how to improve your photography. Every month, he runs a photo assignment on the podcast where he encourages listeners to submit pictures that interpret a theme of the month. For August, the theme was “red”. I figured scarlet was close enough to red so I took my camera down to Ohio Stadium to see if I could get some shots. Fortunately, one of the gates to the stadium was open and I was able to sneak in without incident. This shot was taken with my Canon EF 24-105 f/4.0 L IS USM lens. This is the lens I use the most since the focal range is pretty good for most shots. The camera was set to aperture priority mode with an aperture of f13. This allowed me to keep a bunch of the seats in focus. It would have been good to try narrowing the aperture even more to see how that would have looked. Since the picture was taken on a tripod, I had the IS setting for the lens set to off.
It seems like everyone is starting a weblog these days. I’m not sure anyone will find this site useful except me, but I’m going to try this at least for awhile. My goals initially are two-fold.
First, I’m hoping to use the site as a way to help spur on my growing interest in photography. The photography bug started to get ahold of me when I bought my first digital camera. It was a Sony Mavica that recorded 1024×768 pixel images onto a removable 3 1/4 inch floppy drive. I later went through a Sony Cyber-shot that recorded 3 megapixel images. After that camera was dropped into a river during a canoe trip, we bought a Fujifilm S5000 which worked fine enough. But photography really got into my blood when I finally bought a digital SLR – the Canon Digital Rebel XT. After a year and a half, I find myself still struggling to use the camera as well as I could. I feel a bit like a rookie quarterback in the NFL. I know most of the basic techniques, but I struggle to execute them well. I need to get to the point where I can shoot without having to think. Exposure, composition, focus, and all the rest need to come naturally. I want to see a picture in my mind, take the shot with the camera, and have a high degree of confidence that I’m going to like the result. I’m not there yet. So, I’m going to try to use this weblog as a forum for posting pictures of the day. Hopefully, this will encourage me to shoot more – and share more (I’m not always very good about that part either).
Second, although I don’t know how comfortable I am about exposing ever personal thought I have for public inspection, I thought it might be fun to capture some of my thoughts for later reflection. I have never been a journal keeper, but I do enjoy the ability to reminisce from time to time. Unfortunately, my memory isn’t as good as I’d like it to be and so I find myself wondering from time to time what my thoughts and ideas were at prior times. If I record them here, hopefully that won’t be a problem.
At any rate, if you’re reading this weblog, I hope you find the contents not too terribly boring and ask your forgiveness for any times when I get too full of myself. And I’ll try to keep future entries shorter than this.