Thursday, October 25, 2007

First 'Strobist' sports portraites

20071026-Toughguy-37, originally uploaded by photogeek21.

Well just barely a week after starting to read the, I was inspired to go out and shoot some off camera flash shots in an attempt to capture some cross light balancing with the sun just about 45 min before sunset. I'm very satisfied with my first attempts. With a little more practice I may start offering sports portrait session as part of 10framesasecond. I'm still cheating abit keeping the flashes in ETTL not the Manual settings that true Strobists demand, but hey, it was my first time and the big thing was getting the flash off the camera.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Pulled the trigger...

I finally made my big decision so can you guess what I got in the mail today? If you guessed a brand new 1dMkIII you'd be wrong, I went the 'value' route and decided on the 5D with some optics. So what did I get? Why a 300mm F2.8L of course. The sports lens of sports lenses. I've rented one before and shot a game and man is this lens amazing. Well, I've got one to call my very own now and with 3 games left in this season to shoot - I can't wait.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Label those Cards!

You know I knew why they put the little labels on the backs of CF memory cards, I mean why would I label something that gets erased and re-written?
Well, last Saturday, I was shooting Ryan's Football game and they were really playing well and I was ripping off the frames. Filled my first 4GB CF by about mid way through the 4 quarter and had to swap it out.
After the game I was excited to get home and process an post the pics of the games my site. But I practically freaked when I reached into my pocket to retrieve my card and discovered that I must have lost it out on the field! I was so bummed I really didn't care about loosing the card at that point it was all the images on the card.
Alma tried to cheer me up by suggesting we go back to the field in the morning to look for it - but I knew it would be gone, someone would have found it during the games that were after ours. So early the next morning we used the trip to the field as an excuse to go out for breakfast. We got to the field and the whole family fanned out 'CSI' style searching the field. There were people getting prepping the field for the morning's soccer matches so just when I was thinking we should just get out of there and get some breakfast, I saw it, lying in the grass on the sidelines where I was shooting! What luck, the card was intact and undamaged. The pictures were posted - no harm, no foul.
Well now I know what that label is for now - It's just enough room for my name and phone number and that's exactly what's on each of my CF cards now.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Whoa! I've finally been enlightend

After getting a gig to take the Team picutres for both of Ryan's coach's football teams. I started to do some research on flash photography. The picutres are scheduled to take place about noon so I'm expecting some harsh mid-day Arizona sun, so I'm planing on using a flash to fill in any harsh shadows.
I've really come to like outdoor fill flash I almost never go out without my 550ex atop my camera. The only thing is that I've never had consitent results with it. So I was a bit nervous since I don't want to let the kids down. So after getting hooked on the Strobist site I was planing to fully adopt his techiques which is doing things manually with off camera strobes, But then I found Chuck Gardner's site that had a Canon EX Flash System Overview his tutorials were enlightening, I've had my 550ex for about 4 years and never really knew how it worked with the camera and what Canon's ETTL was all about. Simple things like if you shout in Av mode in bright sun the flash will automatically lower it's output by 1 stop because it assumes you want a fill flash. And that when shooting indoors just put your camera in Manual fix the exposure and let the flash and ETTL do the rest. (This was huge, as I always shot in Av mode and couldn't understand that if the camera knew I had a flash, why would it still set slow shutter speeds as if I had no flash?)
Now knowing that the camera is setting exposure for the ambient light and that the Flash and ETTL is exposing the subject - I got MUCH better results - and I now know what to adjust when I don't get what I want.

I just hope I can digest everything in time for the shoot - I also hope 2 550's will be enough to fill for the whole team.