Neutral Density Filters

With the rainy season upon us and second wave of Covid-19 wrecking havoc on people everywhere. I’ve been trying to find ways to spend my time and stay relatively sane. During the week, I’ve gotten into the habit of working from home, taking much needed breaks and going out on the balcony for a breathe of partially fresh air watch the sun set. In the past, I’d await that moment when the sun descends behind the mountains. Since purchasing a Neutral Density filter, I’m able to capture the look of dusk during the middle of the day. I love how the filter helps smooth out the water while giving my long exposures the contrast I need. It certainly didn’t hurt the the rain that day brought some really nice cloud cover. This was one of my first attempts with Neutral Density Filters and though I have a lot to learn, I love the effects.

Canon D Mark III 200 ISO 30.0 sec f 5.6 with
Cokin NUANCES Extreme Z-Pro Series ND 3.0 Filter (10-Stop)

Adding Shadow

Back when I was giving my studio photography an overhaul. A mentor and close friend who was going over some of my old sessions. Adding, “What did a shadow ever do to you?” It was something I had heard at an International Center of Photography workshop but wasn’t sure how to correct it. However, once I learned, it was as if an entirely new world of depth and creativity opened up. Just aa I began adding what I learned to my studio photography, I found myself adding shadow to my landscape photos. To add definition to my landscapes and interiors, partly and considerately more to put shade and add anonymity to the people, often strangers in my photos. It’s helped me in a lot of ways, including sales.
It’s also made me think of myself growing increasingly introverted and wary of close contact with others. Below are a couple of images I took before exiting Gas Works Park this afternoon.

A Visit to Kerry Park.

I feel as if I’ve been chasing the light a lot lately. So much so that I think something different needs to come, and soon. Yet, that time won’t come along until I know I’ve taken that perfect shot, which brings me to this weekend’s short visit to Kerry Park. Though beautiful in that you get a beautiful view of the city from an unobscured view, the crowded spot reminds me of a tourist trap. I think, by now, it’s safe to safe to say I’m a bit of a loner when it comes to photography. One of two people is okay, but when a spot gets crowded with people taking selfies with their phones. I find myself craving solitude. Below is a favorite from my relatively short visit to Kerry Park. On a related note, after joining a Seattle photography group earlier today. I noticed a post featuring an image of the space needle. One that looked almost the same as mine and the countless other pictures of the monument. While by all means, a great shot. It reminded me that I cut my own weird and unique cloth. Angles and all, I want to sidestep the norm.

A Little Help from my Friend

When we arrived at the beach, I was amazed to see a stable of horses assembled on the sands just steps away from the ocean. It was my first trip to the Pacific Ocean since my last trip to Japan in 2012 and my first ever glance from the United States. The horse were bused from a local stable and were close to ending their work day by the time we arrived. While I was eager to capture some images before they began their sojuorn home. I couldn’t help but think how cool this image would look without the rope that kept them from rushing forward. Upon arriving home, I inspected the photos I took before reaching out to my old friend and neighbor. (The one who basically taught me everything I know.) and asked him to magically remove those barriers that hold us back. While we’re here, I’d feel remiss if I were not to include a link to his work. I’ve attached before and after images below as a link to Kevin’s photography, Here

Photoshop-1.jpg
Before

Photoshop-1rt
After

Welcome to Columbia City.

With just over a week in Columbia City underway and still much unpacking to do. I’ve felt a bit overwhelmed by what I see as clutter and distraction. And while the second bedroom has been my place to get away from the TV. The room itself is a clutter filled combination of records, CD’s and photo equipment. Heading up to the spacious and welcoming roof deck has become the most calming and peaceful place I’ve found. So after a long week of collapsing boxes and trying to figure out where things should go. A trip upstairs with the camera was just what I needed. Fresh air and a fresh perspective can go a long way in clearing the mind and bringing on  positive thoughr. Here’s to finding your space.

Roof II (1 of 1).jpg

Roof (1 of 1)

Bring a Sidekick

For as long as I can remember. My wife has been my biggest supporter and critique when it comes to photography.           She understands the way my brain works and she always pushes me to do more with my passion. Having her by my side during many of my photography trips always gives me a sense of security while providing a safety net and getaway driver when I need it most. On the wayShe’s always been my second set of eyes while giving the ones in the back of my head somewhat of a heightened awareness. She’s more than happy to stop the car and pull over to indulge my curiosity and often offers to hang out for hours while I do my thing.  So when we found ourselves traveling down a somewhat sketchy road in upstate New York. She didn’t seem the least bit worried when I jumped out of the car to indulge myself in the urban landscape. When I returned, my getaway car was waiting for me with the engine running.   So, my advice is this. Bring a friend along. Make sure he/she doesn’t look seedy and has a good set of eyes. Be sure to feed them and provide all the things needed when building that sidekick foundation. Until then.

Going for a Walk

It was a beautiful, albeit breezy day. So with a little extra time and a need to stretch my legs a bit, I took a walk down to what’s known as the Pier C Park. A really nice circular extension that as built a few years back. With the sun on my face and the wind on my back. Pier-9703     I decided to stretch those legs a little further and head towards Pier A and eventually the Lakawana area where the big trains and the light rail take passengers to and for.         As I got there and began to look east to lower Manhattan. The sun began to set behind me and soften. It’s always been that perfect part of the day. The one most of us miss due to being behind a desk or in the studio. Though I was beginning to feel a bit tired, my sense of adventure, along with my need to take full advantage of a perfect day, pushed me to walk further.

NewBoken-9697Before I knew if I had walked all the way to the Newport Station in nearby Jersey City. It had been quite a while since I’d explored that part of J.C. and to be honest, I didn’t really miss much. (Towering office buildings and high rise condos don’t really do it for me. Regardless of where I ended up that day. It stood as a reminder to get out of your element and your everyday surroundings. Bring your camera and take a bunch of pictures you can fill your already “busting at the seems” hard drive with. Surely, it will be worth the trip.