One of my goals for 2013 was to “waste” less time indoors and spend more time outdoors. “Explore” a little more, even if it’s only locally. Yesterday afternoon it was sunny and about 48 degrees – perfect for some outdoor activity. So, armed with my point and shoot I headed to a great spot to relax and enjoy the winter sunset. I’m still struggling with one of my other photography goals – which is to photograph more people – but that always poses a challenge. We’ll see what I can do about that. In the meantime, I’m enjoying these evenings watching the sun set over the river.
Pictures taken with Nikon CoolPix P7700 and mostly unedited.
I hate – HATE – mornings. However, once in a while there are reasons to love – LOVE – mornings…like a winter sunrise, on the beach. Weather was cold – but not unbearable, although fingers lost sensation and it took me several hours to warm back up, it was a beautiful day to be outside. Even though there were some clouds, it’s still great to see the light creating shadows and golden hues painting everything it touches. Pretty amazing…a few photos below.
Some photos were taken with a Canon 60D, and others with Nikon Coolpix P7700. Taken in Atlantic City, NJ.
Most shots are straight out of the camera.
I think I need to start posting more personal work with the goal of seeing what works, what doesn’t, get back to camera basics and ultimately become better at the type of photography I like and want to be good at. I’ve already become super addicted to mobile photography with Instagram (@mjmercado47) and I’m close to 900 pictures, having posted and/or taken a picture everyday since early July. Shooting definitely becomes more enjoyable on beautiful days – as it was on Friday – and when one is feeling at ease, relaxed and comfortable. While some of you may have been wrestling other customers at Walmart trying to get that $300 Black Friday laptop deal (I personally prefer Cyber Monday!), I spent the day outside. First, trying to do a car photoshoot and second, enjoying great fall weather, blue skies and the ocean. Pictures below taken with my Canon 60D and a 17-50mm Tamron lens. Fixed White Balance in Lightroom and finished processing in Photoshop.
A few weeks ago I borrowed my Dad’s dusty, “old” Minolta X-700. I picked up a pack of FujiFilm 200 from my local Shop Rite (it was the only pack and I wanted film right away).
I’ve seen some beautiful work done with film, so with some trial and error and doing more personal work, I’d like to produce some great stuff using film. I would definitely like to try out a medium format camera soon, but for now, I think I will experiment with what I have.
I debated about editing the photos below, but decided that I wouldn’t do much to them. I did a few corrections in Light Room – mostly just playing with the Auto White Balance and Auto Tone settings, but for the most part, I tried to keep them as close to what came out of the camera as possible – simply for the purpose of knowing what they look like right off the camera. I had to go to my local Walgreens to develop (and even now they send it out), so the quality obviously isn’t as great as it could be if I had send it to a “professional” photo lab.
I shot most of these on Aperture Priority (whereas, I usually like to shoot manual, I needed a little help this time) with a Minolta 28-70 f3.5-4.8 lens. The shots below are from walking around Cape May, NJ on Labor Day. The day started out very sunny and ended up pretty overcast, but still a gorgeous day.
A few lessons/observations:
First, the frame-counter on this camera doesn’t work, so not only can I not see what I have just shot (I missed having an LCD screen the first few shots), but I don’t know how many exposures I have left. Winding the film – yeah it didn’t quite work very well for me the first time around. I must have not loaded one roll of film correctly, so it didn’t catch well – yeah – I walked around for a while shooting pictures, but not really because the film was not advancing! I finally decided to open it up because I knew that I had clicked way more than 24 times with that one roll.
The film advance lever stopped working towards the end of the day, so I couldn’t advance my film – luckily I think I was already toward (if not already at) the end of the film. Exposure – don’t forget your Sunny 16 rule and use the built-in light meter (it’s something I am just really starting to get!).
Up next, I have a few rolls of Kodak 400 Black & White Tri-X film I got from eBay and some Fujifilm 400 I had found at a Rite Aid. Hopefully, I can test them out soon.
Two random photos of the last two weeks or so…as you see, it mostly has involved consuming food, beer and drinks.
If you’re in the PA/NJ area, I definitely recommend trying the Imperial Pumpkin Ale at Iron Hill Brewery (if there’s any left!).
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.
I took the morning off today to wait for the Directv tech. The dude (because he never gave me a name) showed up in the first hour of my 8AM-12PM time frame and replaced my satellite (the guy thought something like a bat – yeah! – flew into it damaging it). At least my HD channels are back and I can happily watch TV.
So anyways, because I was already going to be late to work, I decided to go to one of the marina’s near my house to see if there was any good photo ops. Well, nothing inspired me there, but on the way, I saw the old Zurbrugg Memorial Hospital in the process of being demolished – I love the way buildings in a decaying state look. So on the way out of the marina I drove around the front of the site, pulled over and took some pictures…ehhh. Nothing exciting. I decided to go around the block and saw people standing outside…some construction workers, some ladies who had one of those car magnets saying they specialized in stained glass, a guy sitting on a stool fixing his shoe. I was intimidated – and went around the block again. I was making up my mind NOT to stop when I decided I should or I might regret it. So I put the car in reverse, parked, got out of my car and walked up to the fence to shoot some pctures. My thought was, if someone comes at me saying I can’t take pictures, I can kindly argue I’m on public property, and then leave.
Surprisingly, the foreman or whoever saw me and started talking to me about how a photographer (someone with the town’s historical commission I assumed) had been coming around to take pictures of the process and people had come around taking bricks and decorative pieces from this old building that will soon be completely gone. I chatted with him for a few minutes and after that he said, “You could take a look around if you’d like.” Really? So I walked into the site a little more without going too far since a) I was dressed up for work and my shoes! and b) the foreman was keeping an eye on me, making me more conscious of what I was doing. I must admit, when I see people I get a little intimidated and think they are going to quickly dub me a terrorist if I’m taking pictures of a building or something. Today showed me however, that sometimes simply kindly asking permission or just being nice and talking to people will allow you to get closer or exactly where you want to be to get your photograph. Sure, sometimes people will have a problem with you having a camera in their face, so ask. As I walked away from the site, I wish I would have asked the foreman if I could have taken his portrait, but hey- baby steps. Out of the about 30 pictures I took, I can’t say anything spectacular came out of it, but it’s practice…and I’m going to try and make an effort to do that more often. Below 3 pictures…1 from the marina and 2 from the demo site.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.
Anyone who knows me well can tell you that on most days, I’ll choose a pint of craft beer over a glass of wine or a fruity frozen drink (though I am a fan of Mojitos and Caipirinhas). This past Saturday, I spent my afternoon at the 2nd Annual Spring Craft Beer Festival in Mt. Holly, NJ brought to you by the High Street Grill. It was a beautiful, sunny, warm Saturday afternoon – a great day for a beer festival and an enjoyable time.
There was live music, food available for purchase and of course – lots of beer to try. I probably tried about 15 or so beers – and probably didn’t get to half of what was available. Being my first beer festival, during the first half, I probably made the mistake of drinking the every last drop of the each sample I received. Two hours later, there was so much more I would have wanted to try, but I was so full – no more beer fit. Oh well – next time! Here are a few of the beers I tried, in case you’re up for trying something new – and if I remember, I’ll list the specific beer (for some odd reason, I don’t remember names, just the descriptions I was given of the beers, so I tried to match that as best I could – but if I’m wrong forgive me). Does anyone out there have a copy of the beer list – I saw a few people with them, but didn’t know where to grab one (or maybe they were out when I came in)?
Anderson Valley Brewery – Boont Amber Ale
Anderson Valley Brewery – Summer Solstice Cerveza Crema
Heavy Seas – Loose Canon IPA
Southampton – Double White Ale
Long Trail – Belgian White
Terrapin – their IPA?
Weyerbacher – either the Double Simcoe IPA or Hops Infusion; it was definitely for the hopheads.
Troegs – I want to say it was the Sunshine Pils
Yards – Philadelphia Pale Ale
Stone – Cali-Belgique IPA
Slyfox – Dunkel Lager
Allagash – White
I figured that during this event, I would take a few pictures – since photography is something I haven’t been doing enough of lately and I can definitely use the practice. All photos were taken with my Sigma 30mm f/1.4 lens on a Canon Rebel XTi. I also determined that event photography is kind of fun. Anyone need an event photographed!? Will work for beer. LOL.
The entire gallery can be found here and a few more photos after the jump…