My wife is slowly teaching me what it means to be well dressed. Thus far I’ve learned: shoes and belt color should match, and denim does not go with MORE denim. During this little impromptu photo session with Lyn (wife) and Kallie (friend), I also learned that with you can never have too many layers.
This is true in Photoshop, too. I’m all about the layers. I usually make a new layer for every step in the edit. Healing brush, dodge and burn, sharpening, curves – each major step lives on its own layer. And I always keep the original layer in the stack, too. That way I can go back if I get lost. Plus, if you’re like me, you love soloing layers to see how far a photo has come.
Here are a few test shots with the new AB1600 down by Whiskeytown Lake. Using the PocketWizard Mini and Flex I was able to get a useable strobe sync speed of around 1/640. Strobe was boomed overhead with a small silver umbrella. Looking forward to setting up some more daylight blasting sessions soon.
Canon 100mm Macro + Red One. Yes, I hate these things too, but I love to hate them. Working with this guy for about an hour emptied my adrenal glands. Definitely will need a spider wrangler next time. The spider was either sitting completely motionless, or scampering away off the table. That made me think that a subject like this would work really well for a “living photograph.” Click the pic to see what I mean.
Here’s a really simple way to rig your dSLR to your body for those high-action, POV-type shots (think skiing, biking, motocross, etc). No expensive helmet-cam rigging required. All you need is a bungee cord.
Most cameras come standard with a neck strap. You’ll need to make sure this is attached. Next, hang the camera from your neck. Good, now you look like a tourist. Chances are your camera is hanging somewhere near your stomach. You’ll probably want to shorten up the camera strap so that the camera hangs over your chest. Unless your tummy is sporting a six pack (I’ve got a six pack IN my tummy), you’ll find it much easier to wear the camera higher so it’s pushing against your chest rather than gut. To accomplish this, I had to shorten my camera strap by tying a knot in it. Your mileage may vary.
Next, attach the bungee cord, hook facing out, to one side of the strap near the body of the camera. Wrap the bungee around your back and hook it to the other side of the camera strap. Done. That’s it. If the bungee is the right size, you should feel the pull of the bungee holding the camera tight against your body. Notice as you move, the camera moves with your body. Now your hands are free to hang on to the handle bars, ski poles, or dog sled(?)
A couple things to note:
* You should be ‘slightly’ uncomfortable. In order to hold the camera tight against your body, you’ve got to get the bungee cord relatively tight. If your torso goes numb and you can’t feel your legs, it’s too tight.
* Try to find a bungee cord with plastic hooks. Plastic is less likely to scratch your camera and less likely to poke you in the sides. Do not attempt this mount if you are ticklish.
* This method holds the camera tight for most lateral forces, but the camera is still free to bounce a little up and down. For jarring activities like running or pogo sticks you might want to add a vertical strap as well. Let me know if you find something that works.
Here’s a clip of me on my trusty lil’ Suzuki 450GS. This was shot with a Canon MKII and a 17-40mm f/4. The POV riding shots were accomplished with the bungee-mount method.
I shot this footage last December at the US Grand Prix of Cyclocross in Portland, Oregon. My buddy Chris was racing and I figured this would be a great way to try out the new Birger mount. After shooting for about a year with only the Red 18-50mm, it was pretty liberating to start shooting with some different focal lengths via Birger and EOS glass. This footage has been sitting on my hard drive for the last 8 months and I finally got around to editing some clips together. This is not meant to be anything more than a camera test so don’t look too closely for a theme or story.
I started this project with the Color workflow in mind, but ended up getting much better results out of the new color science in Red Alert. The final tint was done inside FCP with Magic Bullet Looks. Enjoy!