Category Archives: action / sports

Top Photos from 2014

Is it too late for a “2014 Best of” post?  Hopefully this one is only arriving “casually late”.  Smile

That said, regardless of your photography experience, I think it’s a good practice to go through your photos periodically and choose a few that you consider to be among the best.  The transition from December to January provides, if nothing else, a convenient marker.

So, in no particular order, here are a few from my 2014 archive.

———–

 

10 for 2014-1

This is arguably my best Milky Way image.  More details here.

10 for 2014-2

From a quick trip up to Mt St Helens – here’s an image of the edge of the crater that I’d posted over on the Facebook page.

10 for 2014-3

And there I was standing on the Morrison Bridge (trying to get an image for the Bite of Oregon) when the bridge went up.  I also posted a number of images from that gig over on the Camera 47 Facebook page.

10 for 2014-4

From the Harrisburg Harvest Festival and Tractor Pull.  More images from that afternoon can be found here.

10 for 2014-5

Who would have thought that fisheye lenses and historic bombers were a great combination?  More images of this B-17 can be found here.

10 for 2014-6

2014 was the year that I learned about the IR72 filter + X100s.  More details can be found here.

10 for 2014-7

Happened to be in San Francisco for business and brought the X100s along.  This is a panorama cobbled together from a series of handheld images.

10 for 2014-8

Could I really have an annual list of photos and not have a rodeo image?

10 for 2014-9

Or two?  More images from this year’s Philomath Frolic and Rodeo can be found here and here.  If you’re looking for more rodeo – check out the Exposure story.

10 for 2014-10

Or some hot air balloon photos?

10 for 2014-11

Just playing.  This photo can also be found over on my Exposure.co site.

10 for 2014-14

Had a chance to shoot some Polar Plunges for Oregon Special Olympics. The Portland event had a group of Super Plungers that ran once an hour for 24 hours into the very chilly Columbia River.  I posted a number of photos from my time with the Super Plungers over on the Camera 47 Facebook page.

10 for 2014-15

Just a bit of flooding here in Corvallis.

10 for 2014-16

More Viking! At the Bend Polar Plunge.  More images from my trip to Bend can be found here.

10 for 2014-17

The debut of Saddle Shop over the summer.  You can see more from this gig over at Exposure.co.

top 10-21

Was looking for a vintage-feeling portrait for this one that connected the student, his school, and sport.

top 10-22

At the county fair for a dance performance and happened to have the X100s + IR72 filter with me.  Really dug the architecture + sun + colors on this one.  I thought the combination provided an unexpected industrial feel.

dog in shadow-1

Our dog was waiting for a bit of beef jerky in some pretty strong light with shadow.

Christmas morning-1

Christmas morning sunrise over Fish Lake just outside Leavenworth, WA.  Not sure what created all of the sparkles speckles.  I’m guessing it was a really dirty filter.  Then, again, it was Christmas morning.

2014 Philomath Frolic & Rodeo: Roping & Racing

The Philomath Frolic & Rodeo just wrapped up another year and thankfully I had the chance to be out there again for three of the four shows.  Here’s a few from the roping and racing (plus one steer wrestling image).

2014 PFR - Sunday - 1000px-9

Steer Wrestling

2014 PFR - Sunday - 1000px-5

Tie Down Roping

2014 PFR - Sunday - 1000px-18

Barrel Racing

Yep, that’s Stevie Rae Willis of Stompin’ Ground fame.  I also have a photo of Sam Willis (her dad) steer wrestling here.

PFR 2014 - Thursday-1000px - 2

Team Roping

PFR 2014 - Thursday-1000px - 3

Break Away Roping

2014 PFR - Friday Night - 1000px-3

Tie Down Roping

2013 Top 11 Photos

It’s always a great challenge to look back on a year’s collection and to trim to a list of the best.  It’s an exercise I recommend to every photographer out there.  That said, the extra challenge is to get that list to only 10 photos.  Well, I almost made it this year – I trimmed this one to 11.  Smile

So, in no particular order, here’s my 2013 list with a bit on each addition.

———————

This first photo is from a children’s church group singing at a convalescence home.  It was a very sweet moment with folks stepping out of their rooms to hear the children sing Christmas carols in the hall.

Best of 2013-1

Once I saw these two barns – I just wanted to figure out a way to get the photo.  This is one of those rare images where (if I remember correctly) I was thinking black and white from the onset.

Best of 2013-4

In 2013 I had the opportunity to shoot two Polar Plunge events for Oregon Special Olympics.  This next photo is from the Corvallis event.  Initially I was torn between two photos for this list: “dynamic splash” and “pink tutu’s”.  You can see which one I chose.

Best of 2013-6

This was from the 2013 Photo Walk here in Corvallis.  It’s probably safe to presume that it took me over a hundred images to get this one.

Best of 2013-7

In the very next moment, this bull fighter found himself in the air (but my very next frame only had the legs of the bullfighter visible – I was zoomed in too far on the scene to get all of him in the air).

Best of 2013-8

The Lover’s Bridge in Danshui, Taiwan.  This is one of those rare images where I actually pre-visualized the final result.  Some folks are really good at that – I’m not.

Best of 2013-10

Jiufen, Taiwan is a great little market town.  Fortunately while we were there we were treated to this epic rain.

Best of 2013-11

Street opera in Tainan, Taiwan.  I like how this image shows the proximity of the street to the opera.

Best of 2013-13

Hot air balloon festival.  Another image here on the list with strong architectural elements.

Best of 2013-15

Sheep nor shearing are typically on my list of favorite images.  But, I liked this moment along with the lighting, color, and texture.

Best of 2013-17

Mt Hood in the clouds.  It wasn’t long after this image that the mountain was completely obscured by the incoming weather.

Best of 2013-18

Mounted Shooting

Benton County Rodeo - Mounted Shooting - 2013-2Over the last few years I’ve had a chance to shoot some rodeo and it’s been a heck of a lot of fun.  But on Saturday – while shooting over at the Benton County (Fair &) Rodeo – they had an event new to me – mounted shooting.

And, yes, I was completely out of position (should have been on the other end of the arena for this course) – but I’m really looking forward to trying it again.

That said – it’s not often that you see a rodeo queen with a single action Colt .45.  Yep – that’s Nicole Schrock, the current Miss Rodeo Oregon, trying her hand at mounted shooting.

Benton County Rodeo - Mounted Shooting - 2013-4

And another one.

Benton County Rodeo - Mounted Shooting - 2013-1

BTW – if gear is your thing (or if you’re mulling teleconverters)– here’s a possible data point for you – I shot the entire afternoon with a Canon 1.4x teleconverter on a 70-200 f/4L.  There was plenty of action and plenty of light making it was a great combination.  Of course, the teleconverter will drop you a stop – equivalent of f/5.6.  Only once or twice did the autofocus refuse to cooperate – but more likely due to operator error.  And, if you’ve read this far – you might find it interesting that this isn’t the latest version – I was able to pick up a used second generation 1.4x over at Adorama.

Frog Jumping!

Jefferson Oregon Frog Jumping 2013-1I think I read somewhere that the Jefferson, Oregon Frog Jumping contest (part of the Jefferson Mint Festival) is the second largest such event this side of the Mississippi.  It’s entirely possible.  I didn’t get an official participant count – but I have no reason to believe that there were less than 100 folks ready to coach their frog to victory.  And if you didn’t have a frog with you – they were kind enough to rent frogs.  So – for $5 – you could both enter the contest and borrow an amphibian, too.

So – without delay, I’ll just hop straight to a few photos from the afternoon. Smile

(And just in case you’re curious about these sorts of things – photos 1, 3 and 4 were partly processed using the VSCO film emulation package.  I just picked it up – and have probably been using it way too much.  Hopefully I’ll have a better review of it a bit later.)

Jefferson Oregon Frog Jumping 2013-3

Jefferson Oregon Frog Jumping 2013-5

Jefferson Oregon Frog Jumping 2013-10

2013 Bend Polar Plunge

Two weekends – two plunges!

Had a chance to head on over to Bend this last weekend to snap a few photos from their Polar Plunge to support Oregon Special Olympics.  A great crowd!

This weekend I wore thicker socks and it made a huge difference in keeping my feet warm while wearing the waders.  🙂

And just in case you missed them – here are a few from the Corvallis Plunge.

(Thanks, again, Jim, for loaning me the waders.  They worked great.)

2013 Bend Polar Plunge - Second Set- low res - JO-502013 Bend Polar Plunge - First Dozen - JO-152013 Bend Polar Plunge - First Dozen - JO-10

2013 Corvallis Polar Plunge

Polar Plunge 2013 Corvallis - lowres - JO-42On Saturday morning I had the opportunity to head on down to the Corvallis Polar Plunge – an annual event that supports Oregon Special Olympics.

Thanks, Jim, for loaning me the waders.

Polar Plunge 2013 Corvallis - lowres - JO-48

Polar Plunge 2013 Corvallis - lowres - JO-47 Polar Plunge 2013 Corvallis - lowres - JO-41

Rugby: CWU at OSU

rugby - osu vs cwu - 19 jan 2013 - low res-4Well – it’s been a couple of seasons since I’ve shot rugby – so I carved out a couple of hours on a chilly Saturday to go catch the Beavers and Wildcats.

Central Washington insured this wasn’t a close contest – but it was a good opportunity to go out and burn a few bits.

And if anybody has a good suggestion for photo-friendly gloves – I’m all ears.  🙂

rugby - osu vs cwu - 19 jan 2013 - low res-2

rugby - osu vs cwu - 19 jan 2013 - low res-3rugby - osu vs cwu - 19 jan 2013 - low res-7 rugby - osu vs cwu - 19 jan 2013 - low res-8 rugby - osu vs cwu - 19 jan 2013 - low res-9 rugby - osu vs cwu - 19 jan 2013 - low res-10 rugby - osu vs cwu - 19 jan 2013 - low res-11 rugby - osu vs cwu - 19 jan 2013 - low res-12

Get Out and Shoot More Photos in 2012

I’d like to get out and shoot more this next year.

Seems like a pretty simple statement.

And then reality hits:

Hey – I’m busy.

Now your busy is likely different than my busy.  And from Henry’s busy.  And from Helen’s busy.  But we’re all busy.

I’d like to get out and shoot more this next year.

Now – let’s just imagine for a moment it’s New Year’s Eve 2012 – and 2013 is just around the corner – what photos are you showing to family and friends – what stories are you sharing?  You know the ones:

… and then just as those cute little rhino babies were looking right into my lens – I hear behind me the grunt of a not-so-happy mother rhino as she breaks through the brush…

Yeah – doesn’t sound like any of my stories either …   🙂   but if that’s the type of story you want to be sharing – if those are the photos you want to show – now’s the time to put it on the calendar!

And that’s really the foundation to your game plan.

Newport - January 2012-4So – how do you do it?

Here are my 5 methods to carve out photo time:

One

I have a few events I try to hit every year – and they’re on the calendar early.  They include rodeos, hot air balloons, and some backpacking.  Sometimes – I find some music to throw in there – or another event that I can shoot with (such as Help-Portrait).

That way – once they’re on the calendar – I’m planning around them – not through them.  I become more prepared – gear essentials, photo lists, and general research.

I also tell my wife that where ever she wants to go – sounds like fun!  As long as I can bring along my camera.  Tulip festival.  Oregon Garden.  Butterfly farm.

And, then, as other events pop up  – it’s easier to add them – air shows, classic cars,  rugby games, ….

Sometimes, though, it’s tough to keep those big day trips in the calendar.  And that’ll force you to be even more disciplined with your time – cuz there’s always a big project at work that could use your extra hours or those beautiful days when the garage needs to be cleaned.

Two

But it’s not always about the big trip or event – the next step I use to get out more – is using what I call “Zero Hours”.  Up early / up late.  Working when everyone else is in bed.  It’s that early Friday morning before work to the wildlife refuge to put some miles on that new glass – or up late after dark to get some fog + Christmas lights downtown.  It also helps that early and late often have the best and most dramatic light.

This is a tough one – as it will often squeeze out an hour or two of sleep – but I really think this is an effective way to schedule in a few more frames.  Two things to consider:  (1) know what time your local Starbucks opens  🙂  and (2) when shooting during off hours or in secluded areas – be mindful of your surroundings and safety.

Three

Join a photo club or group of like-minded shooters.  If you’re having trouble finding one – keep an eye out for Kelby’s Annual Worldwide Photo Walk.

Four

Volunteer for  a local festival or event.  Local festivals are often looking for photos to use in their next year’s advertising (or to tell people what just happened).  It really is as simple as calling up, or dropping an email, to the festival director.  These big local events are a great way to get in the game.  If portraits are more your gig – check out Help Portrait!

Five

Another way to carve time into  your calendar is to schedule something that requires pre-payment – such as workshops and airplane tickets.  Few things keep days open on a calendar like cash.

——-

So – what’s on your photo calendar for 2012?

15 Images from 2011

I’m thankful to have had a chance to really stretch myself as a photographer in 2011.  Now – that doesn’t mean I nailed every shot I pointed my camera at (in fact – I missed quite a few images) – and it doesn’t mean that I shot everything on my “2011 list” – but it was a great year for learning – from having the chance to fly half around the world to deciphering some studio lighting.  In between – I had opportunities to shoot more rodeo and hot air balloons – and to teach an informal travel photography class and write an article for PhotographyBB (both were great learning curves!).

As I’ve done the last few years, I’m posting images from the year that I think sum up what could be considered some of my best work.  For folks new to this blog – I simply think this process of handpicking and culling photos from a year – the process of drawing a line in the sand – is a great exercise to really sharpen the proverbial pencil.  There’s no need to post your images on a blog or on Flickr  or Facebook – but I highly recommend trying this exercise.

In year’s past – I’ve posted 10 images – and then I quickly followed up with “ten more”.  Well – this year – I decided to simply post 15 images without a follow up.  Maybe next year – I can actually get myself to only 10.  🙂

It’s probably not surprising – but this year’s list is heavily weighted with images from Uganda (6 photos).

Also – maybe not surprising – buts something that struck me after I compiled this list – many of the images – at least in my opinion – had a lighting element that could be considered striking or extraordinary.

Are these my “15 best”?  Maybe some of these would make that list – it’s hard to say exactly.  Regardless – I hope they represent a range of some of my better images from the year.

So – here you go – in no particular order – 15 images from 2011.  And – if you have any feedback – please don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments.

Fishermen on Lake Victoria.

2011 top images-4

Playing with sparklers (+ long exposure).

2011 top images-8 Traffic on Highway 99.

2011 top images-21

I was taking some photos inside this classroom between classes – and this girl was just drawing on the board.

2011 top images-15

At the Northwest Art & Air Festival.

2011 top images-1

Boda-boda drivers outside of Kampala, Uganda.

2011 top images-6

Steer wrestling at the Philomath Frolic & Rodeo.

2011 top images-12

Rough stock riders prepare at the Benton County Rodeo.

2011 top images-3

Green heron fledgling.

2011 top images-9

Hot air balloons at sunrise.

2011 top images-17Rain at Rally for Life in Salem, Oregon.

2011 top images-14

Sunrise.  Uganda.

2011 top images-5

Carver at the carousel in Salem, Oregon.

2011 top images-10

Boy playing at a school in Kampala.

2011 top images-7

From the back of a boda-boda outside of Kampala.2011 top images-16