Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Black & White Photo of a Flight Duck

This is a black and white picture of a flying drake mallard duck that was originally photographed in color.  The original was a very nice image with the background being a clear, blue sky.  The conversion to black and white seemed to increase the contrast somewhat and make the duck stand out even more.  Also, I like how the wings of the duck are outstretched and because he is in a banking turn this makes for a nice diagonal line.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Black and White Photo of Wood Boat

This black and white picture of an antique, wood speedboat was originally taken in color.  The boat is a triple cockpit Hackercraft runabout and was photographed as it was driving directly away from the camera.
The photograph lends itself to the monochrome conversion because of the dramatic contrast between the dark water and the bright spray.  The sky, too, is relatively dark while the boat consists of the middle tones.  We used the channel mixer to make the adjustments with some additional subtle dodging of the spray and the roostertail to make them a little brighter.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Video-Two Wooden Speedboats

We recently produced this short video featuring two antique, wooden speedboats.  It's Volume II, following a similar one we produced last year with the same boats.  The photos and video footage were taken in July and August of this year.

The still photos were taken by me.  The video footage was taken by dedicated staff and includes GoPro camera work, both mounted and handheld.  A second handheld video camera was also used.  Our apologies for the handheld parts that appear shaky.  We rarely had calm water and the chase boat was bouncing.  Also, due to being understaffed on some days, I was sometimes driving the chase boat myself, not taking photographs but allowing staff to use the video cameras.


Thursday, September 4, 2014

Racing Wooden Speedboats

These two antique, wooden speedboats were photographed recently on Lake St. Clair as they ran together in close formation.  We wanted the drivers to get as close as possible but the driving was very tricky in the choppy water.  This shot looks very nice with the bright spray showing well against the dark water.  The lake was too deep for me to stand so I was positioned on the swim platform of a chase boat that was pointed into the sun.
The boat on our left is a Gar Wood runabout and the boat on our right is a HackerCraft runabout.
100-400 lens at 250mm, 1/1250 second at f/5.6, ISO 250.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Hacker-Craft Speedboat

This is a nice action shot of an antique, wooden speedboat.  This image was not planned in advance but I happened to be a passenger in another boat running with this 30 foot Hacker-Craft runabout in the St. Clair River.  The light was fading quickly in the late evening but the action was so exciting that I tried a few shots anyway.  This image captures the old, wooden boat just as it launches off the wake of the leading boat.  The light is soft and pleasant.
150mm lens, 1/1000 second at f/5.0, ISO 1250.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Cape Buffalo

We were just as surprised as this bull cape buffalo when we rounded a bend in the trail while riding in the safari truck one morning.  He had been eating (note the grass in his mouth) and raised his head to stare, presumably pondering whether to run away or charge.  It was early morning with not much light and we weren't yet prepared to take any photos.  The ISO was dialed up and we got a couple of frames before quickly moving on.  The buffalo turned and ran away at the same time.  It's a memorable shot because we were very close to this wary and ornery animal.
100-400 lens at 285mm, 1/200 second at f/5.6, ISO 6400, handheld with image stabilization.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Show Jumping

This is one of our favorites of a horse and rider jumping a fence during a recent horse show because it shows peak action.  The horse is at its highest point in the air with both front legs even with each other.  The back feet are off the ground and the ears are forward and alert.
Most of the time we shoot in the horizontal orientation.  It's more natural and there is more room for framing error when following fast action like this.  But the vertical orientation works nicely when tightly framed.  The slope of the horse's back and rear legs gives a nice diagonal element to the composition.  We certainly don't claim to nail the timing and the framing perfectly every time.  The success rate is lower than we would like but a lot of practice helps immensely.
100-400 lens at 150mm, 1/1600 second at f/5.6, ISO 400.