Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Grand Prix Jumper-2

Here is another photograph taken during the Grand Prix jumper event at the recent Traders Point horse show in Indiana. This is a nice action shot taken at the peak of the jump. The location is actually the same fence shown in the previous post but I had moved slightly more to my left to see the horses more from the side and to shoot in the horizontal format. Unfortunately, this angle put more background clutter into the image. The intermittent rain showers kept me close to the tent and there were many other spectators, both of which made it difficult to find other locations to shoot from. Nonetheless, I like the image for its portrayal of action.
70-200 lens at 150mm, 1/1250 second at f/3.5, ISO 250.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Grand Prix Jumper

We were able to get some photographs during the Grand Prix event at the Traders Point Horse Show in Zionsville, Indiana. This photograph was taken as a rider and his horse jumped a fence during a rain shower. This fence was near the outside rail so we could stay underneath a nearby tent as long as possible before popping out to take pictures. The fences were 4'11" high so the horses seemed to be in the air a long time as they jumped. This is one of the few instances where the motor drive would actually give us a couple of nice images each time.
The weather was unfortunate. Very wet and dark with low contrast. We used the 70-200 lens because of its speed. If there had been more light we would have preferred the 100-400 lens to allow us to photograph more of the jumps that were farther away.
70-200 lens at 200mm, 1/800 second at f/3.5, ISO 400.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Red Fox

Here is a juvenile red fox that paused at the edge of a small woodlot. I was told that one or two young foxes had been frequently seen in the area. I saw them myself at dusk the day before and took a couple photos but they weren't particularly special. This photograph was taken the next morning shortly after sunrise. The area was in deep shade so there wasn't much light to work with. ISO was set at 8000, 1/400 second at f/5.6, 400mm lens.
I love this image because there is nice contrast between the fox and the background, the fox is alert and we can see his entire face. It is unfortunate that a weed partially obscures the fox. He did not come out any further after seeing me and went right back into the woods.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Environmental Boating Portrait

We had fun creating this photograph of a couple sitting on their antique, wooden boat at dusk. An off-camera flash was set up about 40 feet to the left of the camera, on the shoreline, and a grid was attached to reduce the spread of the light. The photo was taken a few minutes after sunset and we intentionally underexposed for the ambient light in the image and lit the people with the flash. The speedlight was set manually to 1/2 power. The goals were to focus attention on the people, keep enough detail in the boat to recognize it and have the boat's running lights noticeable.
All of this was essentially accomplished with the original image but we made some improvements in post-processing computer work. First, we slightly increased the brightness of the people relative to the background. Second, we changed the color temperature of the background to blue to more resemble night light (we added a mask to keep the color temperature of the people and the running lights from changing). If I were to do this again I would either increase the power of the flash or position the boat closer to the flash unit.
Shot at 1/200 second at f/5.6, ISO 400, 50mm lens.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Barefoot Water Skier-2

This is the photograph taken shortly after the one in the last posting of the barefoot waterskier. The previous image included the boat with the horizontal format and I quickly switched to vertical for this shot. I was standing in the water as the boat approached but was slightly wider than needed. I had wanted the skier to be approaching directly at me but I also wanted to be outside the spray of the boat as it passed. Sharp viewers will notice that the skier is edging with his feet in an attempt to get as wide as possible. We have practiced some more since this photo was taken and have succeeded in getting in closer to the boat's path.
This was shot at 1/1600 second at f/5.6, ISO 250, manual, 400mm lens. I use a fairly fast shutter speed because I stand in chest-deep water. It is surprisingly difficult to stand steady in the water even though it is calm. The fast shutter speed is needed because my body is not steady.