Another Thursday, another photography class.
I was disappointed to have missed last week's class, in which Warren demonstrated the use of macro photography via a bellows. I'm having trouble with my own macro photography -- no depth of field, the inability to get a tripod close enough to my subjects, etc. -- and would have liked to have had some pointers.
Last night Warren brought a catalog from a photography supply store called Really Right Stuff which carries quality gadgets that he recommends.
One never stops spending money on photography, it seems.
He showed a series of slides representative of night photography. The images were quite nice, actually. I was pleased to learn that Warren's a fan of neon signs. I've been wanting to photograph the sign for Canby Bowl, but haven't done so yet because:
- I need a ladder in order to get closer to the height of the sign, and
- There are several obstructions (a power pole, a street sign, etc.) which limit the effective shooting range.
Warren had two good quotes last night:
- "A lot of photography is chance. But another part is pre-planning."
- "The key to photography is to commit yourself to excellence."
Our assignment last week was to photograph light. Specifically: "Look at the impact of light on your subject."
To complete this assignment, I took many many dull photographs. For example, I made 23 exposures of a patch of birch bark over the course of eleven hours in order to track the subtle color changes. I'm not posting those images here. You'd be bored to tears.
I also took about ten photographs of the pre-dawn mists in the fields behind Custom Box Service. Those are also boring. The sunrise that came minutes later was not-so-boring, however, and I posted that image a couple of days ago, and am reposting it now.
Also included in the images I've posted are:
- A photograph of yesterday's sunset, in which the cloud formation was unlike anything I've seen before, very radial. I ought to have taken additional photos as the sunset progressed, but I'm a fool.
- A photograph of a dandelion made with my 105mm macro lens. Yes, the depth of field is poor in this photo.
- An image of some variegated leaves of unknown nature. I like the colors in this photograph.
- Yet another exposure of my favorite tree. Warren started to tell me what One Thing would make this image work, but he got distracted and so I don't know what that One Thing is. Kris noted that the spidery branches on the sides get lost in the background, and I suggested that perhaps this tree would photograph well against a backdrop of snow. Now all I have to do is wait ten years for the conditions to be perfect…
- And the final image is from the Canby Pond, a series of flowing curves which served as the subject for the test of my polarizing filter. Warren has asked me to rephotograph this subject this week while making some adjustments to the exposure. I may do that this afternoon, if the conditions are right.
The class session was good. I learned a lot from Warren's comments on my photographs, and from his comments on other students' images. I've still got a lot of work before I can match the images produced by most of the people in the class, but at least I'm learning. I can't afford to keep up my current photographic pace for long, though, unless I find a place that offers free photo processing.
We don't have a traditional photographic assignment for this week. Instead, the class is meeting in Portland's central eastside industrial area on Sunday morning to make photographs. Next Thursday, we meet at the Photographic Image Gallery. Meanwhile, we're supposed to be working on our end-of-term slide show. I haven't even begun…
On this day at foldedspace.org
2005 — Ideal Schedule As part of my quest for a pastoral lifestyle, I may be in danger of pining for an ideal schedule which is anything but.
2004 — You're Invited! Kris and I are holding Chicken Noodle Fest on March 13th. Everyone is invited. Drop us a line to let us know you'll come.
2002 — Indigo Girls We joined Cari and Chris for dinner (the first time we've gone out with them in years -- nice to do something with them again) and then we caught the Indigo Girls' CD Preview at the Aladdin Theater in southeast Portland.