Monday, July 24, 2006

Cloud Scrapers

I took this photo while visiting New York City this past weekend. These two towers make up the Time-Warner building and are a very impressive sight. Apparently they were designed with the gap in the middle to increase the amount of sunlight available for nearby Central Park.
I was happy to get a really interesting environment for this shot. Where a plain blue or completely overcast sky would have made the scene dull, the small clouds behind the building and the reflections of the larger clouds in the building windows creates an appealing image.

Canon 5D, 24-70 f/2.8L
@24mm, f/4.0, shutter-1/6400 sec, ISO-320
[click photo to enlarge]

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Giraffe Hide

I took this photo of a giraffe at the Philadelphia Zoo earlier this summer. I wanted to capture the strange animal in a different way. By focusing on the coloration and shapes of its hide I tried to bring out the oddness of the animal without simply showing it was tall.
Looking at the hide closely it resembles more of a geometric pattern than a random texture.

Canon 5D, 70-200 f/4.0L
@200mm, f/4.0, shutter-1/1250, ISO-100
[click photo to enlarge]

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Rain Flower

Here's a break from the Shenandoah photos and a bit of color. I took this photo of my Mom's flower (no idea what the name of it is) a few minutes after a quick thunderstorm. I wanted to capture the beading of the water on the colorful leaves before they dried up so I quickly set up the tripod and took a few shots.
I made sure to use a shallow aperature to blur the background enough so that the details in the petal and the drops really "popped". As an interesting side effect the pistils and stamens of the flower (I think that's the right terminology) seem to be floating in the air.

Canon 5D, 24-70 f/2.8L
@70mm, f/35, shutter-1/125 sec, ISO-100
[click photo to enlarge]

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Rushing Water

This is another shot from Shenandoah National Park. I believe this is a small waterfall on the White Oak Canyon trail.
I set the camera and tripod up close to the edge of the rocks (very carefully) and used the mirror lockup and a 2 second timer to reduce vibrations and camera shake. Even with a 1/8th second shutter speed, the rush of the water over the falls creates a pleasing blur. I cropped out the trees and plants in the foreground and background in order to create a more abstract and interesting image.
I also converted to black and white after I took the shot because I liked the almost 50/50 balance between dark and light in the photo and because the lack of color emphasizes the shapes better.

Canon 5D, 24-70 f/2.8L
@51mm, f/22.0, shutter-1/8 sec, ISO-100
[click photo to enlarge]

Monday, July 10, 2006

Dark Tree

This is another shot from Shenandoah National Park. I was really happy with how all of the elements came together to form a really interesting and detailed shot.
The rolling hills in the background are typical of what you normally see driving on Skyline drive in Shenandoah and you sometimes see burned and dried out trees along the side of the road like this one. In addition to these elements, a bird was resting on the very top of the tree and the sun was setting, leaving a faint pink tint in the sky.
I used the tree leaves and branches to the left of the frame to balance the image and to emphasize the twisted appearance of the dead tree. Overall I am very happy with this shot.

Canon 5D, 24-70 f/2.8L
@70mm, f/10.0, shutter-1/100 sec, ISO-100
[click photo to enlarge]

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Forest Stream

Back to posting after a long time off. The next few shots should all be from Shenandoah National Park in northern Virginia which I visited during the July 4th weekend. Shenandoah is a really beautiful park with great hiking and views from Skyline Drive.
Some of the trails follow the many streams and rivers which run through the park and make for great photo opportunities. I was able to capture the rich greeness of the forest while giving the water a soft a fog-like look by using a long exposure.

Canon 5D, 24-70 f/2.8L
@38mm, f/22.0, shutter-1.3 sec, ISO-100
[click photo to enlarge]