To Flash… or Not To Flash

IMG_8385 copy … that is the critical question. Fleeting moments, it’s an instant call. You get one try… pick. It doesn’t come very often you get to shoot one with and one without flash. It’s a choice. Here David sat long enough for me to get two shots. The Canon G11 white balances automatically. Great! But it’s still ambient light you deal with. So it’s not quite right. The natural lighting gives less detail in the eyes and no gleam or catch light for the eye. Flash is a little too bright and a bit too artificial for my taste. I would pick the natural light. I’m not a fan of obsessive manipulation in Photoshop, so this is what it is.IMG_8384 copy

 

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Julia’s on the move again. New apartment and she’s letting me have a look. It’s not art. It’s illustration. That’s my photo there in the corner. Julia had it framed and she has taken it to hang in the new place. Thanks. It’s home for now. She’ll be on the move again in a year. Yup, that’s the plan. All the best.

Mixed lighting

Technical: iPhone 4s, 1/16 sec, f2.4, focal length 4.28

That iPhone got a workout. Lots of shots between the Endeavor and the party. This one looks like a self portrait. The color balance is not swell. Flash is just a bit too bright. But it’s nice to see my son happy and enjoying the evening. When you consider the conditions, the young folks have made an art out of taking their own pictures.

 

David, Sarah

Technical: iPhone 4s, 1/913 sec, f2.4, focal length 4.28

I’m not sure if this is a self portrait or it was done by a friend. David’s right arm could be holding the phone. There is background flare which highlight’s Sarah’s hair. The exposure is low in the foreground and probably could have used a fill flash to brighten up the colors and detail. Otherwise for the moment it was a shot of two happy people at a wedding.

A Little Zoom

Technical: Canon G11, 1/400 sec, f4.5, focal length 30.5

I’m still getting the hang of a higher zoom. You don’t look thru the viewfinder or at the LCD. You just point and shoot. It means you get a lot of duds. Fish are the challenge. If I’ve said it once… the slow moving ones are the most forgiving. I’d very much like to put a DSLR to the test. And… a proper flash. But for now it’s a paparazzi style that is working.

Ray

Technical: Canon G11, 1/100 sec, f4, focal length 13

The subtle blue color cast is easily fixed in Photoshop. That is just part of the consideration in this image. My friend Farid was prodding it along so I would have an action shot. So here I am sort of swimming and panning on the fly. Hey, it worked. Your subjects really don’t pose for you as much as you’d like. So I shot. The delay in shutter and exposure can be annoying. There’s no motor drive here. It does make you more deliberate in pressing the shutter.

Editing

Technical: Canon G11, 1/320 sec, f4.5, focal length 30.5

A little Photoshop can go a long way. I’ve other shots of this fish with more rich brown coloring. But it appears this guy is really black and white. Even for fish it’s the eye. There’s a little catch light and it looks more appealing. This is a big fat fish with little fins and I figured it couldn’t swim fast. Wrong. It’s faster than me. I did a little zoom. The problem with zooming is finding and keeping your subject in the image frame.

 

Blackfish

Technical: Canon G11, 1/250 sec, f4, focal length 18

We were in a holding pattern at 15 feet to decompress before surfacing. No dice. I popped straight to the surface and couldn’t get my butt down for beans. So I hovered and shot this image. The light is brighter so the shutter speed is faster. There was just no way to coordinate and pose this feeding mass of black fish. Something was tasty on the reef. There’s not too much to love here. You can see an eye or two. The composition is … ugh. There’s not to much detail or color except for the blue edging. I have a lot of these images. I thought to show some mistakes, lest you believe everything comes out great.

Flatfish

Technical: Canon G11, 1/200 sec, f4, focal length 18

I’d have never seen this fish except that it was on the move. The human eye is accustomed to see threat and anything moving is noticed first. I cropped to get this close up. You lose detail as you crop more. But here it’s not possible to salvage the image unless you crop. Otherwise I have a whole lot of homogenous boring sand in the image. With macro focus I could have tried for the eyes. That would have been a shot. But I did not have the time and could not get in close. My BCD kept pulling me toward the surface.

Giant Clam

Well at least it has a chance to become a giant. It’s got a big thick shell, that when closed will be a significant challenge for any predator. The color balance is still in play. It’s a bit pink. The inside was more a gold color, which is hard to appreciate here. Composition? I’m shooting mostly wide open, wide angle. It’s hard to compose when everything moves. But I’ve started to zoom a little more. It’s another exercise and another trick to master. Underwater photography has given me some good initial results. But like anything else, it takes a while to learn the nuances.