Photographer Down and Still Capturing Photos

A week ago I had a surgery that has rendered me immobile for the next 5 weeks or more. The day of the surgery was an event in itself. For starters the nurse hit an artery in my arm when attempting to administer an IV, luckily I have no issue with the site of blood, because there was a lot of it. After the surgery when I was being driven home, I felt like I was going to pass out. I lost my hearing and the only thing I could think about was breathing.

The pain was so bad at home, even the almighty Vicodin did nothing for me. My 14 year old dog almost passed away on Saturday after having a severe seizure. I was expecting the worst. On Sunday morning, miraculously she was back to her normal self. Well days later, Im finally starting to feel better. Now that the pain has subsided, the inevitable wave of boredom is washing over me. I currently have explored every inch of the recliner that I’m confined to. I have a stack of books to read and have been playing hours upon hours of Battlefield.  Something was still missing, photography.

I started watching some photography reviews and tutorials via my chromecast (a $35 TV streaming device I highly recommend even though there is little support for Mac and iPhone) but that only increased my desire to get out and shoot, which when you are confined to limited walking even on crutches is next to impossible. So the past couple of days I have been shooting with my x100s from the recliner.

My challenge has become taking photos from one location, in a room where nothing really changes except for the lighting, the occasion bird at the window, and every so often when the dogs stop and say hi. To add to the difficulty, the x100s has a fixed lens (if you have read my x20 post and are wondering why Im not shooting with that, there will be a dedicated post for that later). I could go get one of my Canon’s and have all my lenses with me but I really don’t have room for all that equipment. Who knows? I will probably resort to that as the weeks progress.

This challenge has helped diminish my boredom and has also reminded me of how important taking multiple shots with different angles of your subject is. ( See the last set of photos )



All ready for maximum entertainment

All ready for maximum entertainment

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The importance of taking multiple shots is demonstrated below:

Good however her front paw is cut off

Good however her front paw is cut off

Better but there is a distracting white blur in the right hand corner

Better but there is a distracting white blur in the right hand corner

Almost there, Im just not liking the angle

Almost there, Im just not liking the angle

There it is.... Also the exposure was increased

There it is…. Also the exposure was increased

Photoshop: What to do if your brush diameter disappears

Occasionally I will be deep into photo editing and all the sudden my brush diameter will disappear. Years ago I would have to reset photoshop when this happened not knowing that the problem was caused by turning on the CAPS LOCK key. So thats it next time your brush diameter doesn’t work just make sure that your CAPS LOCK key isn’t on. I decided to make this post because I encountered the minor problem again last night and it made me wonder how many people run into the same problem and don’t know how to fix it.

Urban Adventure: Encinitas

A couple Saturdays ago I woke up, turned on my ipad and checked some of the blogs I follow to see what people were up too. I got inspired by Claire Atkinson’s Blog on Urban Photography  I decided I was going to go out on my first urban photographic adventure.

For some reason I feel weird when taking photos of strangers. When ever I take a photo of a stranger they are usually performing an activity that warrants a photo, for example a juggler at a festival. So as soon as I got out of my car and had my camera ready, I was going to take a photo of the first person I saw. Luckily for me that person was on a bike and riding fairly quickly. Next I was approached by a homeless man. He asked for a dollar, I gave him one then asked if I could take his picture but he said ” no way man…. Im too famous” hahaha.  After I got my toes a little wet, it was time to go swimming. I entered a shop that was filled with beautiful mexican inspired art.

As I turn to my left a man sat at a desk working on some of the art so I quickly took a photo of him and smiled. I figured if he didn’t want me to take his photo he would have said something.

After exiting the store I walked through a bazaar.

After I left the bazaar, I was on my way walking through the town. One method that I found exciting was stopping at a store entrance and taking a quick photo. The only problem with this method is the fact that I didn’t have time to properly expose the images and I was going from really bright conditions to really dark.

I spent a good hour or so walking around the town, taking pictures of whatever seemed interesting.

And for my favorite picture I took that day…….

On thing that made this shot special was the fact that he knew I was there. I was about 75 feet from him and he took notice of me as soon I stepped on to the platform. I couldn’t resist this shot. I used one of the large concrete  pillar to hide myself as I swapped out my 30mm 1.4f for a manual focus 135mm 2.8f (the longest telephoto I had with me). I waited a little bit for him to lose interest in me, then I swung around the pillar and took about ten quick shots.

Lessons Learned from this Adventure: 

  • If a homeless man/women asks you for money, ask if you can take his/her picture before you give them cash
  • Be ready to shoot quick 
  • Look all over for photo opportunities
  • If taking pictures of interiors and there’s no time to properly expose the image, make sure your shutter speed is no lower than 1/60th 
A big thanks to Claire Atkinson for the inspiration!