Today I went on a photo excursion to the Bamboo Forest with a couple of my photographer friends, Photogery and Edlom. It was definitely a successful day as we got lots of great photos and had a blast doing it. It certainly required immediately washing my mud-covered clothes and soaked shoes.
Today is the first time I’m using a camera other than a DSLR for my picture of the day. We had to meet a client out in Kihei for a short video shoot, and conveniently there was a motorcycle picture challenge out there that I wanted to snag (see more on MPG here), so I decided to go up a little early to get it. Since I was on the bike, I didn’t feel like lugging around the big camera and lenses on my back, so I just stashed the Leica in the compartment behind my seat.
I pretty much determined early on what kind of shot I wanted to get. After the shoot, I stuck around the boardwalk for a bit to get just the right shot. I played around with a couple different looks and exposures, but I went with a pretty typical sunset silhouette. I’m really happy with how it turned out. Especially because I haven’t taken a picture of my bike for quite a while.
Leica D-Lux 5 M; 8mm (37mm effective focal length); 1/2000; f/3.5; ISO-100; 0EV; AWB No flash
Had a couple drinks with edlom, talking about the fair, politics, Koreans (no, not like that - we were watching Henry Cho) Netflix…you know, the important things in life. We both realized we had’t gotten anything for 366 yet, so he started snapping the drinks. I figured it might be interesting to see the same thing from two points of view, so I snapped away as well.
Canon EOS 5D Mark II; Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM AV; 88mm; 1/13; f/7.1; ISO-3200; -1/3EV; AWB No flash
I’ve never been one of those “car guys”, but I do have my opinions on what looks cool. This classic truck sitting outside Home Depot definitely fit the bill. Even cooler is that the “weathering” look of the truck is all paint - it’s not actually rusted out. Wish I snapped a few more detail shots of it, though.
Canon EOS 5D Mark II; Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM AV; 32mm; 1/160; f/4; ISO-400; AWB No flash
I need to start having more fun with this project. Although an hour sweating in my dining room was coming close to not being fun.
Canon EOS 5D Mark II; Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM; Manfrotto 055XPROB Pro Tripod with Manfrotto 322RC2 Heavy Duty Grip Ball Head; Canon Wireless Remote Controller RC-6 (I really need to buy my own…); tethered to Lenovo laptop for Canon EOS Utility live view M; 82mm; 0.5"; f/8; ISO-200 Canon Speedlite 580EX on camera @ 1/16; Canon Speedlite 430EX II on floor, slave ETTL
Edlom and I decided that it had been too long since we went shooting together, so we planned to go and try our hands at some street shooting in Lahaina (since, on this island, that’s the only place with any kind of street activity). I was excited because I finally had a reason to use my 70-200mm f/2.8 which had more or less been sitting on the sidelines, waiting for some action.
I learned quite a lot throughout the night. Particularly that the claims about the 5DII’s bad low-light auto focus capabilities are not exaggerated. But I also learned how much fun it is to manual focus (makes me wish I had a split-prism focusing screen; you hear me Canon???) and that I really need to work on it, too.
It went really well. I was even surprised with the number of good shots that I liked from our little adventure. Actually, aside from some waitresses who got completely riled up for no reason, it was overall a great experience. I think I found a new love in photography.
Now I really want to get my ass to a big city.
Canon EOS 5D Mark II; Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM M; 95mm; 1/400; f/2.8; ISO-6400 No flash
While on our way to Lahaina, we saw a lot of smoke rising out from the Dunes at Maui Lani. I told Dawn we should go check it out.
We pulled into the Dunes driveway and I had Dawn let me out. There was a pretty big brush fire going on, and the first respondent was an MPD officer, awaiting the MFD. They arrived maybe three minutes after we got there. About five minutes after that, a helicopter came and started dousing the fire. Luckily they could refill right at the golf course, which I think really helped contain the blaze.
I snapped over 300 shots of the scene (effectively filling up my puny 8GB CF card) and got a small handful of images I liked. Even though you can’t see the fire in this shot, I still think this was the best of them all.
I shot a bunch of other stuff while at Lahaina (including some great sunset photos and the hour-long traffic stop we got caught in on the way out) but I think the bravery of the MFD needs to be recognized more than another Maui sunset.
Canon EOS 5D Mark II; Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM TV; 90mm; 1/500; f/7.1; ISO-100 (Auto ISO set) No flash
Finally broke down and ordered my BG-E6 battery grip. My 5DII felt so awkward without it after having the battery grip permanently affixed to my 5DC (that’s, “5D Classic”). When I saw that my grip was waiting for me today, I pretty instantly knew what kind of shot I wanted to get.
Unfortunately, holding over 5 pounds in the air like this for roughly half an hour starts to get tiring. Especially when you’re also holding another DSLR in your other hand at odd angles, trying to capture your image. I determined two things tonight: 1)When you’re both the photographer and subject, shooting is a lot more difficult than I previously let myself believe, and 2)I damn well need a 60D with its vari-angle screen.
Canon EOS 350D; Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS M; 28mm; 1/80; f/4; ISO-800 Built-in flash fired; Auto
Today I had a few friends over to play some Goldeneye Reloaded on the 360. However, before the killings began we had a little tasting. I received four different kinds of whiskey over Christmas and it was said that a taste test needed to be done. So be it.
The results were as varied as the whiskeys themselves and oddly enough the one I thought to be my favorite wasn’t.
Canon EOS 5D Mark II; Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM AV; 50mm; 1"; f/4; ISO-100 No flash
Last day of the year. No insanely epic photo to finish the Project 366 with, but one that makes me happy. Which is probably the most important thing I learned - to not stress so much over getting that perfect photo, but to just enjoy what I’m doing. Quit making it a chore and use it to just better yourself and better your craft.
I hope I can follow that in all of 2013. Happy New Year to everyone! It’s been an amazing journey with all of you!
Canon EOS 5D Mark II; Canon EF 135mm f/2L USM AV; 135mm; 1/500; f/2; ISO-6400; 0EV; AWB No flash
I thought the vog haze had been bad earlier this week…but tonight it was down right ridiculous. Driving around town, the haze was so thick that streetlamps and lights of all sorts were just bright blurs. I could see the beams of vehicle headlights. It got so bad my asthma kicked up and I started having chest pains.
I’ve always wanted to move off of Maui, but if this crap continues like this, it might end up being a necessity for me to move instead of just a desire.
Canon EOS 5D Mark II; Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM AV; 75mm; 1/8; f/4; ISO-1600; 0EV; AWB No flash
I used to be really into magic. A long time ago. I think I still have a few tricks lying around, but they’ve pretty much just been sitting in storage. Actually, I only know of one of my old tricks and only have an idea of where it is…I should find it and start carrying it with me again. Maybe start practicing again.
Yeah. Magic was fun. Magic is fun.
Canon EOS 5D Mark II; Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM; 055XPROB Pro Tripod with Manfrotto 322RC2 Heavy Duty Grip Ball Head; Canon Wireless Remote Controller RC-6 AV; 135mm; 1/60; f/2.8; ISO-3200 No flash
As much as I enjoyed our time away from Maui, I was glad to get back home. I’m not ashamed to say that I really miss our little guy when I’m away from him. People are able to comprehend and understand what’s going on. But unfortunately, a dog doesn’t understand why daddy’s not home like he usually is when the sun gets to a certain point. Gus and I spent a good amount of today just chilling with each other. I can’t wait to do it again tomorrow.
Canon EOS 5D Mark II; Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM; Manfrotto 055XPROB Pro Tripod with Manfrotto 322RC2 Heavy Duty Grip Ball Head; Canon Wireless Remote Controller RC-6 AV; 70mm; 1/250; f/40; ISO-100 (Auto ISO set) No flash
Last week I posted about re-activating my old RAZR phone for my business line. Later that night, I casually commented to Dawn about how much I really love that phone, prompting her to ask me just why I like it so much anyway.
Fair question. After all, that phone isn’t even 6 years old yet, but phones nowadays have come light years ahead from what this already amazing phone could do. But it was a classic phone. Sleek, stylish, easy to use and carry…I dare say iconic. Of course, I made a quip about its “AWESOME 1.3 megapixel camera!” and Dawn laughed saying that one “could never get a good picture with that thing.”