Sunday, June 19, 2011

A mighty "damn fine weekend"

“Diane, It’s 10:38 AM on Fathers Day and Toshiro and I are on the back deck of our Port Orchard home, located on the Kitsap Peninsula, some 58 miles from Seattle. We are enjoying the last fire in our 10-year-old terra cotta chimenea. After the fire dies, it will become a garden planter.” This  the type of recording FBI Agent Dale Cooper (played by Kyle MacLachlan) dictated to Diane on his tape recorder. As you can tell, I watched one too many “Twin Peaks” episodes yesterday. My son, Trevor, sent me the Twin Peaks The Definitive Gold Box Edition for a combination birthday/Fathers Day present. I know if anyone who hasn’t watched Twin Peaks should download the pilot series and you’ll found out just how fantastic it is. I'd recommend you watch this on a moonless night near a forest, or on your living room sofa chair with a cup of  “mighty fine damn hot black coffee” and a piece of cherry pie.

Today, I received as a gift a half dozen tomato plants and a
pond liner. Guess I know how I’ll be spending the rest of the afternoon.

Many thanks for my family for making this a “mighty fine” Birthday/ Father’s weekend.

What’s gonna be for Christmas perhaps... The complete box set of
“Northern Explosure"?

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Making the best of a bad lighting and background situation

My good friend Randy Romo has been after me to take senior photos of his son, Tanner. However, since April we’ve had typical Pacific Northwest rainy and gray weather in the Puget Sound region.

When the weather was good for those few days, Tanner was off playing high school baseball for South Kitsap or for his Narrows Select Baseball team.

This weekend the weather was perfect. I was able to capture some nice senior portraits of my son Colin, dressed in his prom attire, in our backyard. Around 5:30 with the setting sun filtering through the trees and shrubs making for beautiful lighting, I set up a three speed light studio and took some pictures. Now this tuned out nice.

However, the only day I could take pictures of Tanner was Sunday morning at about 11:00. Horrible sun, however, we found a somewhat shady spot in his grandfather’s yard to make some pictures.

I set up three Canon 580 portable speed lights, using CTO warming filters, did a few test shots, adjusted the output flash of each strobe to match the ambient light and bingo - got the correct lighting. Most of my camera and flash setting were ISO: 50, Aperture: 3.5, Shutter: 1/250 and Exp. Comp.: -1.3.

In spite of the sun and background, these didn't turn out so bad. I would have rather taken them in the beautiful evening magic light, as I did with Colin, however some things just don't go your way. Sometimes it takes a little extra effort to get that good “natural” lighting.