Day 339 (4 Dec 2012) Pepsi Bottle, or More Creative Shots of Trash

Tonight while finishing up my studies I started to wonder what I would shoot.  I looked over at the empty Pepsi bottle sitting on my desk next to my binder and the shape of the threads on the top caught my eye.  I thought, “I bet that might make an interesting black and white photo.”  What do you think?  Agree?  Disagree?  I’m curious to see why. 🙂

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P.S. This bottle will be recycled, if you were worried 😉

Day 338 (3 Dec 2012) Sunrise in the fog

This was one of those mornings we have here in New England where a warm, humid day is followed by a cool night, resulting in patches of dense fog.  There is something about fog that lends an air of mystery to the landscape, that just draws me into it.  I just want to enter in and see what it’s hiding my sight.

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Mystery In The Field

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Morning Fog

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Morning Commute

This project is winding down, with less than a month to go!!  I’m excited about that fact!  This has been a HUGE commitment, more than I could have ever imagined when I began 338 days ago.  While I’m on track to meet my goal of taking a photo every day, other goals have been pushed aside to reach this one (most notably my goal to read 24 books this year, I might get to 16-18).  However, I have learned A LOT and my skill has improved more so in the last year than the all the previous years combined!  From my photography side of things, it has been worth it, but overall, taking into account the time I should have been studying, reading, doing house/yard work, etc, I’m not sure.  And to be honest, I’m not sure it matters at this point.

I will not be doing another 365 project in 2013, but I will still be very active with my camera still!  I will spend a lot more time learning and studying techniques, learning more about editing, and not feeling the pressure to come up with an idea at 10pm when I should be sleeping, just to say I shot that day.  If you have a lot of time, or really want to improve your photography, I do recommend a 365 project.  If you don’t have a lot of time, a 52 project (one a week) might be more fitting.

Now as this project approaches completion, I am looking for an idea for my last post of the year; something to top off a year of shooting some great images with style!  I’m open for suggestions, but with the caveat that I do have to work the 31st.  So fire away!

I’m also looking for ideas of what you would like to see in the next year.  I will be posting my best images, at minimum.  But I could start creating some tutorials on my favorite styles/techniques (both to help y’all out, and to make me learn them better!), and maybe do some gear reviews, of the stuff I have used (which is limited).  I don’t see this as a profession, but maybe someday I can make some money to by new gear 😀

Day 337 (2 Dec 2012) Christmas in Colchester

Tonight I wandered over to the Colchester Town Green to see our tree.  The tree that was decorated in the past was damaged during Hurricane Sandy and was removed after Thanksgiving and replaced with this one from the edge of the Green.  It’s a bit smaller, but still a beautiful tree!

I set up my camera with my 50mm f/1.8, radio trigger and tripod and just had fun!  It was a warm 50 F with minimal breeze, so I wasn’t in a hurry to be done and was able to enjoy myself out there!  There weren’t very many people out for me to get in the way of (or vice versa, lol), either. 🙂

I’m curious as to your thoughts on my interpretation of the scene.

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Self Portrait 
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Christmas Light

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Christmas Lights and Tree

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Christmas Tree

Day 336 (1 December 2012) Christmas Parade

Today makes 336 consecutive days of taking photos!  Only 30 more till I hit 366!  This dude isn’t stoping at a mere 365, I’m going all the way to 366!! Oh Yeah! LOL

Tonight I hung out with some friends (and their kids, lol) at the Groton Holiday parade.  It wasn’t the the greatest parade ever, but how often do you get a chance to see several floats all lit up at night just drive past you?  It was a good time to light paint many times with minimal effort, lol.  All I had to do was stay warm 🙂

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Day 335 (30 Nov 2012) Bokah

Nothing spectacular tonight; just trying to get some bokah practice in for when I can find a great outdoor Christmas tree 🙂  These were trees in a shopping center parking lot, strung with some white lights.

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Day 334 (29 Nov 2012) Kids, don’t try this at home. . .

“Now wait a minute,” you say, “that is just a tame photo of a city in the distance, and you forgot to follow the rule of third. Why are you implying danger in this shot?”  Well, I would have to say it’s because of where I was when I shot it.  I was on the side of a bridge on a local freeway (I-291) over the Connecticut river at rush hour.  There wasn’t much room to bet into/out of my car, so I had to time it just right.  But I was smart enough to place the car “up stream” of traffic while I set up my tripod. 🙂

I had thought of doing this shot several times before, but was always concerned a police officer would stop me, but I gave it a shot today and succeeded!  Not a great shot; bridge vibrations on 30 sec exposures caused it to be very unsharp on the details, and the composition wasn’t great, the city in the center and all.  Guess I was distracted?  Yeah, you could say that 🙂

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Day 333 (28 Nov 2012) The Melting of the Snow

After yesterday’s snow, the sun came out today and it warmed up a tad, so the snow started to melt a bit.  Most of its still here as of tonight.  So during my lunch break I took out my macro lens & tripod and attempted to shoot some droplets.  I’ve been following H2O by Joanna for quite a while and she creates some amazing drop photos, and she has inspired many images of mine, such as todays (though hers are better 🙂 )

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Day 332 (27 Nov 2012) A Snowy Road

Winter in New England means snow!  I love the snow; I love watching it fall, snow ball fights, hiking in it (gonna go for snow shoes this year, I think), driving in it, and LOVE snowboarding 🙂

I took my truck for a drive down an old farm road in the woods near where I live on my lunch break and took these shots.  It’s not a lot of snow, yet, but it’s still November 🙂

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Tomorrow I’m going to try for an early AM shot, so lets hope I can get up on time!!

Day 331 (26 Nov 2012) A Firetruck in my Studio

Over this past year, when I wanted to shoot random household objects (aka Still Life?), I’ve had to clear off a part of my ‘dinner’ table (which is where my work computer is set up for telecommuting, I don’t eat there unless I’m eating while working) and had to rely on either sunlight or the overhead light for my lighting.  But recently I got the idea of setting up an old small dinette table in my basement to use as my ‘studio.’  I purchased a couple flexible neck clamp lights and some daylight-colored CFLs from Wal-mart, laid out some printer paper, and viola, I have a studio, of sorts.  Obviously this isn’t sufficient to shoot people, but the space could be set up for that, if I ever decide to shoot things that are alive 🙂  It’s right near a window, so I can get some sunlight, depending on time of day/year.

I enjoyed moving the lights around, turing them on/off, and just observing the effect they had on the toy.  I’m not sure if I like the translucent reflectors on these lights, but they may be able to act as a soft box.  Guess I’ve got more experimenting to do!

While I knew I wanted to test out my new setup tonight, I didn’t know what to shoot.  I was thinking of just grabbing the first interesting shape I saw, just to practice with, but on my way home tonight I passed the scene of a structure fire.  Having been a volunteer fire fighter and knowing a few still, I chose a toy fire truck, in honor of those who put their life on the line for others, every day, most of them as unpaid volunteers.

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2 Lights

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1 Light

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2 Lights

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Home “Studio”

Day 330 (25 Nov 2012) Cows At Rest

I pass this field several times a week, and can’t help but watch the cows as I drive by.  It seems at times that they live a life of ease, with nothing to do but relax and eat all day.  Then I go grab a burger and realize that maybe I don’t want that life!

Let me know what you think of the treatment I gave these images.  The foreground wasn’t very interesting, and the sky wasn’t that great, either, so I cropped them out.  The grass is a mix of dead and green, so it was hard to get the cattle to stand out a lot; that’s why I tried the B&W in the last one.  Critiques are welcome!

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Day 329 (24 Nov 2012) Blue Hour

Right after sunset is “blue hour’, in which the sky takes on a deepening and darkening blue as it transitions into the black of night.  I think that this time of day is the best time to shoot sky photos, especially since if the clouds are just right, the sun will shine a beautiful array of reds, oranges, and purples onto them as it sinks lower below the horizon.

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Day 328 (23 Nov 2012) Plymouth

Today after hitting the one Black Friday sale for the one item I needed I made my way to a beach in Plymouth, MA.  There was a heavy fog this morning, and I was hoping it would linger a bit.  There was still some by the time I shot, so I’m happy w/ the shots 🙂  I just need a sensor cleaning (spent some time correcting for the sensor dust tonight)

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Day 327 (22 Nov 2012) Happy Thanksgiving!!

Yesterday was Thanksgiving, and I was blessed to be able to spend it with my girlfriend’s family.  She is in Spain, and my parents are in CA, so It was good to be able to be with ‘family’ yesterday.  I brought my turkey fryer and introduced them to the best turkey the’ve ever had 🙂

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Day 326 (21 Nov 2012) Night Tracks

There is something that keeps drawing me to railroad tracks at night with my camera.  I took these late Sunday night after watching the new Bond movie; I drove into Jewett City in Eastern CT.  As I was leaving the theater, I looked at the GPS to see if there was anything interesting, and I found this old train depot and tracks that run past it.

There wasn’t much color, so I tried some black and white conversions.  I wasn’t thrilled the lens flare, but i didn’t know it was that bad till I got home, oh well.

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Day 325 (20 Nov 2012) Blasted Weather. . .

Well, It isn’t anyone’s fault but mine for thinking the sky would be clear tonight, and that I would be able to get the shot I had planned.  Better luck tomorrow 🙂  So, here is what I shot, not exactly the plan, but I did get to try out my new-to-me 75-300 zoom!

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Day 324 (19 Nov 2012) Meteor over Avery Point Lighthouse

A couple weekends ago I was talking with my friend Shannon from SeeingSpotsPhoto about her lighthouse project, and that inspired me to shoot the Avery Point Lighthouse in Groton, CT tonight.  The moon was just under 1/2 and I wanted to try my new-to-me 75-300 mm zoom to try and make the moon larger over the lighthouse.  However, the moon was not in the right place (I would have has to be swimming to get the angle I wanted, lol).  However, the constellation Orion was in the perfect location to shoot with the light house.  I tried several perspectives, trying to keep the shutter speed at 25 seconds or less to minimize star trails while having a sufficient exposure.  And during one exposure a meteor blazed almost directly over the top of the light house, and IN THE FRAME!!!  It’s intensity changed as it flared in and out before dying.  It was one of the most spectacular meteors I’ve seen, and I got it on the image!!!!  I was (still am) so excited I texted Shannon and some other photog friends right away (past 10pm, lol).  So, here it is for you to see, as well 🙂

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18 mm, 25 sec, f/3.5, ISO 100 (Avery Point Lighthouse Meteor)

This is one image, no layering, not combining, just some minor tweaks in Lightroom.  A bucket list shot, if I do say so myself 🙂

Day 323 (18 Nov 2012) Blue Jeans Blues

Today was one of those days were I didn’t feel like picking up my camera, much less trying to shoot something creative.  But as I was doing laundry, the pattern of stitching and threads on my jeans caught my eye.  So I whipped out my macro lens and took some shots.  Not too bad, and the subject is worthy of another chance, IMO 🙂

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Day 322 (17 Nov 2012) Jack Frost

This morning I awoke to sub-freezing temps, and as soon as the sun was high enough, I pulled out my camera and macro lens and tried to shoot the frost.  I want to try this again! I love how the ice refracts the light like a prism, too.

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Day 321 (16 Nov 2012) Harry’s Place

In the summer and into the fall Harry’s Place is a happen’ place.  Lines almost to the road, just waiting for their chance to get their own savory burger 🙂

But alas, it is not longer burger stand season, and Harry’s Place is closed for the season 😦

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Day 320 (15 Nov 2012) I-91 South, Hartford

Looking south on I-91, just north of Downtown Hartford, CT.  Even at 11 pm, there is still plenty of traffic coming to and from the city.  This is part of my daily commute, into the city, then out again to my home, in the country. 🙂

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