May 122012

Rocks off the shore near Whaler's Cove (D7000, 24-70mm at 28mm, 20sec f14, ISO 100)

I spent today wandering in Point Lobos Park, south of Monterey, with my friend Jason Bradley, looking for nice vistas to shoot… Composition was the order of the day. What is the point of this photograph? It’s rock and water. The idea, as Jason explained, is to identify why you are taking the picture, and simplify, until that’s all that’s left. (I’m paraphrasing, Jason. Put down the bottle!).¬†Experimenting with long shutter speeds to get that creamy effect in the water, this is my favorite so far.

If you could look up, you’d see Monterey off in the distance.

Rocks and Water. ¬†And in this case…. Time.


 Posted by at 9:17 pm
May 122012

King of All He Surveys - Yellow-Headed Blackbird (D7000, 300mm +1.7TC, 1/1250 f4.8, ISO 200)

While up in Carson City for the Comstock Shootout recently (coming to the end of our soccer-parent career… sigh), the coach and I had Sunday morning free. He’s a birder and general outdoorsy sort of guy, so he suggested we head for Washoe Lake, just a few minutes north. Not having luck getting any of the boys up early enough to go (imagine that!), we headed out on our own.

Washoe Lake Wetlands is a watershed mitigation site, built to offset highway construction in the Washoe Valley. It is a pretty place to walk around, and is home to many birds. I’ve not had a lot of experience shooting birds, but because I heeded the advice of my friend Jason Bradley, I had my tripod and teleconverter with me (I use a monopod for shooting soccer). Birds are kind of skittish, and it is tough getting close. You have to move slowly, and as quietly as you can, and resign yourself to losing your subject in an instant.

I shot as wide open as I could, to have the background out of focus, and draw attention to my subject. I like the way this looks, the out-of-focus reeds make a nice background to the blackbird. This is about a 70% crop from the original image – you just can’t get close enough! This is why true bird shooters have 600mm lenses…



 Posted by at 12:12 pm