Tonight as I was pulling into my church’s parking lot to lead the final Financial Peace University class of this series, I noticed that many of the trees in the parking lot islands had lights very close to them. From the right perspective it looked like there was a light shining from the top of the tree itself, illuminating it’s branches from the top. The rain had broken by the time class was over and left a light haze which was illuminated by the lights and gave the area around it a nice glow. So what did I do? Bust out my tripod and camera, of course! I know you are not surprised 🙂
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 🙂
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 🙂
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 🙂
This weekend I was out shooting with a friend and we drove by the Groton – New London Airport and she pointed out that at night the airport runway was lit with the blue lights marking the runway paths every night. I had never even thought about that; I was surprised to learn it was open/lit at night; it is a very small regional airport. So tonight I headed that way to see what it was like.
I did find the runway all lit up, and pulled over and set up my tripod right up near the fence. As I was shooting, I was a little concerned that a police officer might pass by and tell me to stop. Not that I was breaking any rules that I know of, but in this day and age, people can be paranoid.
Since there was no real foreground interest items to focus on, I decided to play with the focus and crop/composition to try and be creative. In Lightroom, I played with the white balance and saturation to change the colors a bit. I found that the level, in-focus shots were boring. So I broke rules 🙂 You can see part of the fence I shot through, but I like what it does.
Today’s photos came almost by accident; I saw some lighting to the south of where I was and looked at my weather app and found that the storm was just off shore, so I headed south to try and capture some lightning. However, by the time I found a good shooting spot, the storm had moved sufficiently such that none was visible anymore. Then I noticed the tree in the first image. And remembered the challenge for July. Then I moved further south to Avery Point, hoping still to see the storm, but to no avail. But I did end up with the second image as my compensation.
I can’t say that it’s a worthy trade, as I’ve wanted to shoot lightning for years, and have had no luck as of yet, but I am very happy with it as one of my submissions 🙂
18 mm, 30 sec, f/8.0, ISO 100 (Thames River Silhouette)
18 mm, 30 sec, f/7.1, ISO 100 (Silhouette and Light)
Today Was spent enjoying the festivities of SailFest 2012 here in the Groton/New London, CT area. I started the morning watching the OpSail 2012, which is a parade of “tall ships” including the Coast Guard Cutter, Eagle, a US Navy amphib, and several others. Then I went to downtown New London to see the street fair, then back to the Groton side for the fireworks!
Below are a few of my Fireworks images, but I did shoot all the events of the day (though it’s now past midnight, so I’m not gonna review/edit all 200+ photos from today right now!). I think tomorrow I’ll do a supplement with other images from the day, and maybe a brief tutorial on how I shoot fireworks (based on tutorials I’ve read, and my limited experience).
18 mm (cropped), 3 sec, f/10, ISO 100 (SailFest Fireworks)
18 mm (cropped), 6 sec, f/10, ISO 100 (SailFest Fireworks)
18 mm (cropped), 2 sec, f/10, ISO 100 (SailFest Fireworks)
18 mm (cropped), 13 sec, f/11, ISO 100 (SailFest Fireworks)
All day today and most of the afternoon thunderstorms rolled through New England, and when the weather turned nice in the late afternoon, I knew I had to try for a sunset with the clouds that remained! I was going to try and shoot from the beach, until I realized that the sun sets over land this time of year over here (the CT shore is south facing), so I drove along the river and saw this view and fell in love.
An interesting thing happened while I was setting up my tripod these two guys started walking from across the street towards me. It was a purposeful walk, and this isn’t high-income housing (not poor, either), so I get slightly nervous as they approached. I was hoping they owned the business of the parking lot I was borrowing or local concerned citizens. I was wrong. The older of the two guys used to be a pro photographer and lived across the street and was curious about what I was shooting! We shot the breeze for about 30 or so minutes until the bugs got too bad and the light was fading. It was a cool experience 🙂
18 mm, 1/4 sec, f/16, ISO 100 (Gold Star Sunset)
18 mm, 1/6 sec, f/16, ISO 100 (Sunset on the Thames)
44 mm, 1/15 sec, f/16, ISO 100 (Two Bridge Sunset)
Today almost slipped by w/o taking a photo; it was hot (for CT) and sticky and I didn’t feel like doing much of anything. But I did make the trop to Groton to lend a friend an extra A/C unit (since they only have a very small unit for the entire house). After hanging out in the now-getting-cooler house for a bit, I left and drove to the Thames river to shoot the Gold Star Bridge, as my “night” submission for the Photo Scavenger Hunt.
I got to try out my new ball head (a Vanguard SB-100) and I like it so far, esp. since it’s considered a ‘budget’ ball head. But it’s a HUGE improvement over the one that came on my tripod. (I’m saving towards a new tripod to match the ball head). Anyway, here is my submission:
18 mm, 30 sec, f/20, ISO 200 (Gold Star Bridge at Night)
Today after church I went to ride my mountain bike at Bluff Point in Groton, CT with some friends from church. After the ride I dropped off my friend’s son and went back out there to shoot. It rained while we were en route, but the sun was back out when I returned. There were so many wild flowers that I had a blast shooting with my macro lens 🙂 I started out with my 18-55 zoom and as I was admiring the flowers, I asked myself, “is it worth it to go back and swap out for the macro lens?” Stupid question! I had to correct myself for even asking such a question! 🙂
This morning was very rainy, but by mid afternoon the rain had stopped, but a good fog remained, so a friend and I headed to Eastern Point in Groton, CT to shoot. Then we went to a good sushi dinner then back near the point to shoot again. It’s hard to not have a good day when it includes photography and sushi 🙂
The weather to day was magnificent! It was in the high 70s and sunny! I stepped outside of my office building during my lunch break, just to soak up some warmth and sun. I snagged my camera, just in case. I found myself on the north side of the building where we have a little grass and a couple pick-nic tables and the texture and patterns of the brick building grabbed my attention, almost as much as the green grass, budding trees, and birds fluttering about.
The symmetric lines drew my eyes down the side of the building as I stood next to it, and the rough texture drew my hand to the bricks’ surface as I walked down. It was a great break from the beige fabric covered box, they call a cubical, that I spend most of my day in.
The third shot is of the sunset, shot from the parking lot of my church from right before I started my Financial Peace University class tonight. I only had a few moments before my class arrived, but I like how this turned out 🙂