November 09

Day 18, Cannon Powershot, Automatic.

I always carry my little Cannon Powershot around in my purse, never wanting to potentially miss a shot. Honestly, I don’t even know how to use this camera except to attempt to set the light, etc. I find it more confusing than my digital SLR. I suppose if I took 10 seconds to look at the manual, I could learn a lot. I caught this beautiful scene as I was driving home. The sun was setting, catching just the tops of the cattails and illuminating the willow trees. I only had time for one quick shot as traffic was coming and I was not parked is the best of places. But for day 17, it will work.

Day 17, Nikon D70, lens 50mm

Once again very dark and gray here. It is getting extremely frustrating to get a good shot. Everything is gray. Even the light. It is that time of year. This is my brother’s truck. He loved this truck. He has been gone for 4 years, the truck sits by my back garage. So, on this dark and dreary day, the truck gets its moment in the spotlight. I shot this wide open at a very high asa. 1600. As you can see, it added a grainy texture to the shadows. I think it works with the subject.

photo 365Day 16, Nikon D70, Lens 18-70 mm, asa 200, f 5.0

I am starting to question challenging myself to do this photo 365 event. Especially on busy days when I really don’t have time to get out and find a decent shot. On the other hand, it is pushing me. It is a good push. I want to improve my photography and that includes always looking at things a little differently. I grabbed this shot, just before sunset as I was driving home. I forgot to check the white balance…I am sure it was set incorrectly. A lesson learned. But I still like the composition, and the dreamy effect you get at this time of day. Now, wouldn’t a beautiful sky have been the best thing? Oh ya…it was pretty gray.

Leaf4Day 15, Nikon D70, Lens 50mm, Asa 200, f 2.2

Back lighting provided by the sun.

Raw Food 365Day 14, Nikon D70, Lens 18-70, ASA 200, f5.0

It is Thanksgiving and my tummy is full. After dinner, I took a quick shot my mother’s neighbor’s pond. We are having a warm November after a cold October. I was hoping for snow, but not yet. Happy Thanksgiving!

Day 13, Nikon D70, Lens 18-70, ASA 400, F5.0

I realize that we haven’t gotten past Thanksgiving yet but I spotted this window and just had to shoot it. It was once again, a very dark gray day here. Thus the need to boost the speed. The holidays are upon us!

BridgeDay 12 NikonD70, Lens 18-70 mm, ASA 1600, F22

Once again, totally gray, no contrast, misty, rainy day. But mist and rain can create their own moods that can be beautiful in their own way. Serene, peaceful, inviting us to become lost in another world.

Rawmazing Photo 360Day 11 Nikon D70, lens 50mm, ASA 1600, F5.0

Today was another tough day to get a shot. It misting lightly, no light, and I was pressed for time. I wandered through the woods behind my house and found an old metal chimney that had been sitting there for years. I boosted the asa to 1600 to avoid having to go and get the tripod. Plus I thought that adding a little grain to the photo might make for an interesting effect. Day 10 in the can.

Raw Food Photo 360Day 10, Nikon D70, 50mm 1.4 lens

Once again, it is a very dark, gray day in Minneapolis. I had spotted some milkweed pods earlier in the morning when I went on my walk. Sitting at the bottom of my driveway, just begging to be shot, a tripod was required because of the low light. I was able to shoot at a 200 ASA with the tripod to get the most information for the shot.

Day 9, Nikon D70

This was just way too easy. Nothing more needs to be said. Hi, Izzy.

Day 8, Nikon D70

Can you believe that I am on day 7? I can’t. I love the fact that I am now thinking about photography a lot. This challenge is forcing me to see everything differently. I have put on a new pair of glasses as I am constantly searching for that one image that will please. Today it was an old truck that is a fixture in front of a store. I have walked past this truck hundreds of times. Today, I saw it in a whole new light.

Day 7, Nikon D70

It was a very gray day here. Tough to find anything to shoot. I wandered into Wayzata (a nearby town) and found this little arrangement in front of a store.

Day 6, Nikon D70

Another day looking for a shot. Sometimes it just requires looking at something you see every day in a new way.

Day 5, Nikon D70

Ok…this is getting a little tough. The day is going by, I am working away and all of a sudden, I remember, I need to go and take a shot! Returning to the scene of the crime from yesterday, I looked across the street and wala! This beautiful old barn was just asking to be shot. So, here you go, day 5.

Day 4, Nikon D70

Today’s shot was a pure desperation shot. Earlier in the day, I had gone for a walk with a friend. There is a great trail, minutes from my house. I took about 40 pictures on this 5 mile walk. When I came home, I threw the disk in the reader and became completely dismayed. There was not one picture that was worth putting on this site. Seriously, not one. Knowing that I had made this commitment, I apologized to my dogs and headed out again. Just down the road is, Noerenberg Gardens. I thought I might find something there.

When I got there, I was actually surprised to find the gate open. I pulled in and got out of the car. Quickly walking to the lake, I spotted a woman in a red coat, hastily coming toward me. Busted, I thought. She kindly explained that the gardens were closed and they were just there doing a little work and were closing the gate now. I pleaded and she consented. A few minutes later, I had some pretty acceptable shots. I am enjoying this challenge.

Day 3, Nikon D70, 1/30th sec at f 4.5, ISO 200

I am starting to question my sanity when I decided to do this challenge. But I do think it will really improve my photography. We will see! Not wanting to leave my house, I started walking through the woods. It is really a dead time of year. Nothing seemed to pop for me. I called the dogs and was just walking up the steps to the back door when I spotted the sun hitting my little bird house. This house has lived on the back porch from day one. And it has even been inhabited! As you can see from the twigs that some little bird worked very hard to stuff through the little hole. So, today, I guess my lesson is to look at the things we look at every day, in a new way.

Day 2, Nikon D70. Shutter Speed 1/15, Aperture F 4.0, ISO 200

Today I faced my first challenge on the Photo 360 challenge. And it is only day 2! I taught a raw food class and was completely occupied with prep and teaching. By the time I was done, the light was disappearing and I didn’t have much to shoot. I opted for another leaf shot. I an not too excited about it, but mission complete.

Day1, Nikon D70, 1.30th sec at f 2.8, ISO 200 (November 13, 2009)

When it comes to photography, I am a bit of a hack. When I started this raw food blog, I knew that I needed to take pictures of the food. I had a little background in photography. I took a class in high school, and one in college. I have always been captivated by the medium but never really dug in and learned. I didn’t even know what white balance was (I will explain later…). But I am an artist. I look at everything with an artist’s eye. So, when the raw food recipes started coming, I started shooting. Darn if I didn’t get some decent pictures! If you are like me, when you have a little success, it fuels the fire to become better. I started looking at food photography on the web and learning everything I could. One of my favorite sites, that truly inspired my food photography was Vegan Yum Yum. Her photography is mouthwatering but most important, she actually shared some of her techniques in a very understandable way. When people start talking technical, my eyes glaze over. But with Vegan Yum Yum, I learned about natural lighting and the famous 50 ml lens (More about that later, too) without needing a straight jacket. I recently read about doing a 360 challenge. You challenge yourself to take a picture a day. It is a way to grow and stretch. What better place to do that than here, with you. I will be posting the photos daily and also talking about technique and development. I invite you to learn along with me. And if you are up for it, start your own Photo 360 challenge. When I get this up and rolling, I would love to see some of your pictures, too! Tomorrow you will find this thread at the top of the blog on a tab called Photo 360.

That said, this is day 1. I took this shot right outside of my back door. It was quite dark out and a light mist was falling. I needed the tripod because of the lack of light. Wanting to highlight the darker leaves and create almost a water color like feel, I knew that I would have to shoot with a shallow depth of field (the 2.8 number). I used my famous 50 mm lens. I use it almost exclusively when shooting the food shots. It isn’t an expensive or glamorous lens but boy does it do a nice job.

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