misterx: (Default)
1. I submit for your consideration one timber rattler, approximate age 14 years old, who was cooperative enough to let me take these photos of it.


+17 )
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I took a trip with [livejournal.com profile] nonspecific and her father up to Beauty Spot near Erwin TN. We also spent quite a while at a nearby meadow, where the alien lifeform was discovered. More of that in a minute. It was a GORGEOUS day for shooting, with good light, enough clouds to keep the sky interesting, and perfect temperatures (for this photographer anyway). The theme of the day was orange. I didn't plan it that way, but that's how it turned out.

Onward.

Approximately many photos follow. )
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(click pic for larger version)


I'm quite pleased with the overall look of this one, especially considering the three exposures where shot handheld. You can see some foliage movement at the left side, but that is the nature of these things.
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So I went to the quarry cave again, this time with [livejournal.com profile] nonspecific. I hooked up the remote switch and set the camera to the bulb setting, so I could hold the shutter open as long as I wanted. Then came the fun part... using my extra-bright flashlights to "paint" the cave with light, only lighting the areas I wanted. It was nearly dark by the time we left, and definitely dark by the time we made it back to the car. As nightfall approached, a heavy mist settled into the cave, making for a surreal experience. When the lights were off, it was pure black, and when on, it seemed pure white, and you could barely see any better. Also strange, was that just 10 or 15 feet apart, and I couldn't understand Kara at all, due to all the echoes. In short, I had a blast. :)

Then suddenly, photos:

Near the entrance:

Exposure Time: 30.000 s
Aperture: f/5.0
ISO equiv: 400
Lighting: natural lighting from left, lesser so from right, fill-in by flashlight

+2 )
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The batch from the tunnel didn't work out due to a lack of bright data (I really did need the tripod after all) but I think I've got the hang of it now with properly exposed photos and the newer software. The photos show some differences due to variations in the settings... I'm still deciding what I want these things to look like.

HDRI = High Dynamic Range Imagery. Take multiple photos of a wide contrast scene, varying the exposure up and down to capture the full range of data available. Using special software, you combine the images, and use tone-mapping to convert the scene-wide contrast into "micro-contrast". This compresses the tonal range a bit, and enables details that would have been lost to come through.

Here's some images I made a couple years back to explain it...
http://www.vaughnsphotoart.com/miscimg/hdr1.jpg (3 exposures)
http://www.vaughnsphotoart.com/miscimg/hdr2.jpg (result)

1.


+5 )
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And now, for something completely different. Grandfather Mtn, at 30fps. I have been testing out the video capabilities of my camera. Unfortunately, uploading these to Youtube made the quality look like oatmeal. They are in reality wonderfully crisp, even though I shot them on low-rez (640x480 I think). The sound is just as terrible as you hear though... I am looking for an external mic with windscreen. The built in one has no wind screen, and is highly susceptible to background noise, particularly electronic noise. It also picks up camera noise when focusing. Overall though, I'm pleased. The main thing I'm trying to wrap my head around is... what do I do with it?

One thing the videos do nicely however is get across how freaking windy it was up there. The wind wasn't enough to blow you over, but it was enough to blow you off balance so you fell over. I know because that happened a few times. :) It was a major challenge keeping the lens clear enough to shoot. I had to stop every three minutes and clean it off.

BTW, all you SLR owners out there, don't baby your camera too much. They can weather more water than you think. :) Mine got quite wet that day, and survived without a problem.







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