Friday, December 6, 2013

Missing images.

She said to me, "Sir, sir, what are you doing?"

"I'm taking a photograph of the vista." And waved my arm to indicate the area of acquisition. An interesting vista, to me at least as the clouds were sitting low in the valley. The shoulders of the local hills wrapped like a kind of warm garment in grey. The weather doesn't do this very often, a rare moment. It may be worth getting a picture of.

"What for?"

"To post on the internet, for sale."

She pondered this, someone behind her said something.

"No, not my house, not on the internet."

As I turned around I fumbled with my camera. I found the two panoramic images that had her house as part of the photo. I deleted them.

In strict technical terms, taking a photo like this doesn't require someone's permission.

Missing images.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Interesting what happened last night...

As I create my art works some interesting things keep happening. One is that I find myself going back over what I have done and I find new updates have occurred with tools I have used in the past, and I keep increasing my "web" of myself. I am not sure that inter-connectivity will make one a success, money-wise that is. But as an artist (using the term loosely here, I see myself more as a person that plays at art rather than a Picasso-like embodiment trying to end war, or like Bob Dylan, writing music to end war; for me it is simply fun to get into it and see what happens as a result). What is success anyway? You can define that in a lot of ways if you are open minded.

Anyway... I happen to be wondering how to make the new cover for the new part of my speculative fiction story, the first part of which is called Enter the Mass Cancelled Square Dance, which you can read here, and which has a nice cover. The new part called Spark Gap, which can be seen here, doesn't have a cover yet. And so I have been wondering how to overcome this as one of the tools I used to create the first cover isn't available to me at the present (pun intended as you'll see), but I went looking for it and surprise, the tool is not only available, but it is available for only $19.95, whereas years ago it was much more expensive.

The tool?

Bryce. Check it out. Enter the Mass Cancelled Square Dance cover was made using it and Photoshop.

Why is it that I am so happy to find this tool, because I got pretty good at using it years ago, it has a light memory headroom, meaning it is not a memory hog and so it doesn't bog down your box like other 3D creation tools like anything by Autodesk (lightwave, maya, etc...), and I happen to have gotten fairly decent at using it's interface, simply by playing around with it. I like to play. Play brings joy.

Bryce brings me back to a time I was exploring and playing with all the great software creation tools (Dreamweaver, Flash, Premier, Photoshop, Ulead tools like GIF animator, Cool 3D, Bryce, Windows Paint, Windows Character Map and some other "tinker toys") and having a lot of fun doing so.

So, my point is that going back over what you have used and done before can be an enlightening experience.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Shooting somewhat of a Rock-u-mentary.

A favorite band that I grew up with has been getting together over the last few years and giving freen music events in my hometown of Corning, NY. Typically it is some weekend in July each year, and has been going on since 2011.

In 2012 I got wind of it and decided to video tape it. Here is a link to the four bands that played that year:

This year I once again received wind of it, but decided to do things differently and have found myself once again in a little bit of a learning curve.

I decided to rent an extra camera, and an extra camera person, along with his camera.

We are using still cameras, with video capabilities to acquire the video footage, along with my tape based HDEF Sony, to shoot this. Shooting video with still cameras; this is an emerging trend, at the time of this writing, in the world of video production. Digital SLR still cameras have very high quality imaging, and are now being used in a wide variety of ways to capture video. I used my first DSLR yesterday and have shot video with it, and on first glance, the results are impressive. Good quality resolution, great color, and even the audio is decent.

However, I worked in a tight space yesterday and didn't get the right lens to do the job. I rented a 50 millimeter lens, when what I really needed was about a 25 millimeter lens, with zoom capabilities. The 50 managed okay, but I was so close to my subjects that focus became an issue and found myself rolling in and out to stay in focus. It was a bit of a challenge.

So I thank goodness that I am shooting more than one rehearsal, and will also be shooting the live event, weather permitting, later today.

This will allow me to have a huge amount of video and still shots to pick from. The rule of thumb when shooting video is more is better. The idea being that if at some point you have something bad happen, like someone walks in front of one camera, you have something else to cut to, in order to cover that ruined shot.

I will post some finished product to this blog later.



Here is a link to the rock video as it presently stands:


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

A fun interlude photographically.

I decided a couple weeks ago, after seeing a sign (remember my talk about signs?) for the Wellsville, NY balloon rally, that I was going to go and shoot lots of pictures.

I did. And have posted many to my Facebook page, as well as importing them as a series of images edited together to create a time-lapse story of the event.

Here's the Ytube video clip:


Saturday, June 29, 2013

I am posting a picture I took today from a little GE 1200 point and shoot camera. About $89.00 from your local Walgreen's. With an accompanying memory card, add another 15 to 20 dollars.

I have had two of these now. The first I put into my pocket one day and, by sliding it into my pocket, I accidentally slid open the lens cover and scratched the surface of the lens. I noticed sometime after when I kept getting an odd blur in exactly the same place in pics I took.

I like these things (these GE cameras) because they have this cool panorama picture taking feature. There are smart phones now that do this as well, and in an easier fashion. With these GE cameras you have to shoot 3 pictures carefully, and then the camera internal software "stitches" the images together. I have learned a couple things from using these. Please find below one lesson learned.

Here is a panorama shot where the "stitching" ended up making the image have a kind of "cubist" look to it:

If you click on it, you will see how the image has arched segments that were attempted to be married together.

Here is nearly the same thing but without as much of the segmented archway affectation:

I figured out why this is so. It has to do with the horizontal line you shoot along when taking the original 3 images the resulting stitched composite is made from. In the image above I panned (moving from right to left or left to right horizontally as if taking a frying pan by the handle and moving it on top of a stove by keeping the center of the pan in the same place yet rotating the pan by the handle from left to right or vice versa) the camera on a tripod, and kept the center of focus along the horizontal line the top of the benches create. It isn't perfect, but by keeping closer to that horizontal line, one gets a better "stitched" image end product.

Thanks to Day and Night Coffee Shop in Mansfield, Pa for allowing me to shoot there, and to whomever did the works in frame.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

It has been a while since I graduated from Empire State College and made an entry into this blog. This blog was started as a requirement of the Digital Art and Design course I took there.

I am writing today to make 2 observations about some interesting art ideas. The first is the new photographic method called light painting. Here are some examples of what can be done using a camera that you can adjust exposure time with. Example 1 Ball of Light. And example 2 is one of my own time lapse still shots at night commemorating Neil Armstrong and a Blue Moon. And this link will take you to a Google page of photography links you can follow to find out more of what can be done.

The next point of interest today is how still cameras are being used as motion video cameras. You might think this is odd because a still camera is a still camera. Not any more. The line between a motion video camera and a still camera that can take motion video has become grey. In this example a still camera is being set to take a series of long exposure stills that are then either imported into a video editing timeline or compiled inside the camera as a "motion" video.

The other option is to simply use the still camera video function and have it work as a video camera. This article on PCMAG states the method and reasoning better than I ever could.