Aug 16, 2011

How fast is a sunset?

Sunsets go fast. Just how fast? I was cruising home yesterday and saw this scene happening in front of me (driving west, obviously) so I quickly found a spot to park, jumped out of the car, put on the 70-200 and took some shots…

This was at 8:08.33.


Exactly one minute later, the sun is half obscured by the clouds…


Finally, by 8:10 the drama was gone. Obviously the clouds didn't help, but the effect is the same.. it is amazing how quickly the sun drops.


I didn't like any of my shots much… somehow left it on f2.8. Mostly I was trying to find a composition point to minimize the power lines.

So I played in Lightroom. Fun times.


Aug 12, 2011

Quick Pic - Volleyball outtake

We are working on our annual Fall Sports Preview edition over at the Tribune.
Special sections are fun for us at the paper, because we get to get a little more creative and have fun with staged photos, unusual graphics and unconventional design.

For me, it is a great time to play with lights on the clock.

Here is an "almost" picture from the shoot with some of our volleyball ladies. They were great sports. The final image? Well, you'll have to wait and see it in the paper!


Don J.

Aug 10, 2011

(Almost) Baked Rats

So it was a fiery day in the local news business... I will work backwards through the day..

As I got back into Seagoville, I saw serious looking smoke coming out of a neighborhood and went to see what was happening. A house had flames coming out of the back of the roof and it wasn't looking good.

When the firefighters got to work on it, a lady asked them to rescue her pet rats just inside the back door. The obliged and somehow the little fellows seemed like survivors... notice what is happening above the ceiling while the firefighters work inside.
Seago Fire Aug 10-2340

Judging by the melted siding on the outside of the wall, I'm not sure how they survived.
Seago Fire Aug 10-2347

Because the wind was blowing away the smoke, you could see inside the attic space...
Seago Fire Aug 10-2403

Props to the homeowner and a neighbor who were hitting that with a garden hose as SFD got their gear in place.
Seago Fire Aug 10-2271

At the beginning of the day, a fire in south Terrell did extensive damage to a home. TFD had the flames knocked down by the time I got there, but there were still some photos to be had...

Like a firefighter walking into a spot where the sun didn't wash out the smoke..
SS-Fire Aug 10-2027

and firefighters working inside to put out hot spots...
SS-Fire Aug 10-2101

Then there is this one. I thought it was just a firefighter working to punch a hole in a ceiling just inside the front door. As I played with it in Lightroom to see if there was any detail left in the shadows, I noticed his eyes looking right into the camera, sharp as can be in the circumstances... kind of eerie.
SS-Fire Aug 10-2002

OK, now everyone be very fire safe and stay cool.

DOn J.

Aug 8, 2011

THSCA Football All-Star game

An opportunity to freelance for the Bastrop Advertiser at the annual Texas High School Coaches Association proved to be a good football season warmup. Or, rather, proved that I was out of shape for the football season, both physically and photographically.

It is nice to have only one real 'assignment' and some time to play around when that guy isn't doing anything interesting. In this case, the target was Josiah Monroe, a standout player from Bastrop who graduated this year.

I've never met him, but he seems like quite a character.. joking around with his temporary teammates on the sidelines as introductions were made...
THSCA Football 2011-9596

I had the 14mm so I tried to get a pic of him being introduced from both sides at once. Unfortunately also got myself the shot if you know where to look. Goober.
THSCA Football 2011-9309

For most of the first half, I was frustrated by missed shots, other players in the way or just being in the wrong spot. Persistence does pay off though, and late in the game Monroe had a great run up the near sideline and almost ended in my lap.

With the THSCA signage as background..
THSCA Football 2011-0188

Same run, as he got closer..
THSCA Football 2011-0203

After the run, he flipped the ball back to the ref... Never stop when the play is over.
THSCA Football 2011-0213

And it is good to get non-action action as well ... like getting a play from the coach
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Here are some of my other favorites from the game...
As I said, the end of the game got better for me shooting-wise. It helps if you get nice plays right in front of you.

Touchdowns are always nice
THSCA Football 2011-9910

Sideways guys are usually good too.
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This was a catch. Barely, but a catch indeed.
THSCA Football 2011-0015

Playing with the big screen before the game...
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Sequence - QB Throws..
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THSCA Football 2011-9719

Sequence 2
Receiving the Kick.. Eyes on the ball.
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Do I hear footsteps? Better get a move on.
THSCA Football 2011-0317

I hate when that happens..
THSCA Football 2011-0318

Finally, getting a shot of a play happening along with the penalty that takes it back is a fun treat that you can't plan for. Just a gift. This would have been a big gain for the South team... opened up by that nice block in the back.
THSCA Football 2011-0153

Volleyball starts this week.. football scrimmages next Friday... the fun and madness begins for another year.

Don J.