until only infinity remained of beauty – John Ashbery
Today a bunch of photographers went around the Richardson Nature Center, here in Bloomington, MN. It was organized by Jerry as part of the TCPG meetup group. I have been shying away from Macro photography, primarily because of my fear of bug and also it needs a good eye to spot these little life forms. So when the opportunity presented itself (thanks TCPG ), I just grabbed it.
The group consisted of some serious photographers, some published, most of them with serious gear, and all of them very helpful and friendly. As we walked through the trails, the topics ranged from how to spot movements, to the gear useful for macro and great information about the bugs themselves. It was very insightful. I learnt that use of flash with a very low output even during day brings the details out on the bugs and puts them in focus. Got to meet a whole bunch of beetles, an orb spider, some dragonflies, a couple of butterflies, and a lot of bumble bees. Jerry showed us how to pet a bumble bee (without getting stung ), it was good to know. Although I left them alone. We walked about for few hours taking pictures and towards the end had a few swallow tails and red admiral pose for us. The red admiral was a bit adventurous. After a few pose, it decided to come closer and landed on me and then picked a Canon camera/lens as its favorite. So all you Nikon users – the debate is settled. Nature prefers Canon. After the pictures were, most of them decided to get to Eddingtons for a well deserved hearty meal. And I got locked out of my car. But the home was just few minutes away, so no harm done.
These are also available in my macro gallery. Enjoy!
Think of all the beauty left around you and be happy – Anne Frank
Road to infinity is the path that takes you deep into the Aoraki National park, New Zealand. This picture was taken from a Cessna Turbo Prop on our way to the top of Aoraki. We used Air Safari for our trip around Franz Josef, Aoraki, and Fox glacier.
It was an interesting flight experience – the mountain air was un-relentless. I was holding on to the seats armrest with all my might. Not sure what that would have accomplished. However the pilot was very adept and deftly handled the mountains giving us enough steady flight to take a few pictures. Here are few more pictures from that shoot.
Total lunar ecplise, April, 14, 2014.
Witnessing this event unfold, with wife and kid, setup in our SUV, sipping a hot cup of Java. Couldnt ask for more.
Milky way in its full splendor at Mt Cook National Park, NZ.
This picture was taken during our recent vacation to south islands, NZ. The whole of the trip, bad weather chased us. Clear skies were a luxury. But fortunately for us, when we reached Aoraki national park, this beautiful day ( and night ) hit us from no where. We parked our camper van and decided to enjoy the day. After a day of trekking, during which, I was constantly planning on how to photograph the night sky, and praying the the onesies-2sies cloud will just fly away, we were granted out wish.
During dinner, I was thinking about how far to walk to get to a zero light zone and was trading ideas with my wife. At about 10 PM, with all my gear set, I decided to go for a hike. Boy, was I wrong. The moment I stepped out of the van and looked up, I witnessed a sky that I have never seen before. So many stars and galaxies lit up the night sky like nobodies business. It was hard to identify any known constellations. Too many stars and planets laid out as a visual treat. You could really visualize what our ancestors were treated to every night and how easy it was for them to map night skies out. Its just there.
With so much light pollution around these days, this natural view of the our skies is rapidly diminishing. Something for us to think about. The new generations might never get to see it. But there are organizations like darksky that are trying to remedy this. Support you local chapter or do your bit to preserve night skies.
Peace. Tranquility. Calm.
Flaming Portraits is a technique to create portraits, very similar to light painting but with more dramatic effect. Travis Gadsby showed us step by step approach to create this. Its really very very safe than it looks. However taking necessary precautions when dealing with fire is recommended. And yeah, Photoshop has nothing on it.
Things you need
- A perfect dark spot – Any light leaking into the frame will be detrimental
- A strobe preferably powered by a portable power
- Camera – obviously
- Remote Shutter or a second person
How to make the flame
- DO NOT use gasoline or any fast flammables
- Tiki Oil works best
- Use a metal broom and wrap a cotton towel around it
- Tie the towel in place using metal wires
- Dip the towel end in the Tiki Oil
Before you light it up, make sure everything else is set correctly. Set the strobe and your model. Ensure he/she is perfect focus. Use F/22, ISO 200, 15 sec shutter to begin with. After focusing, put your lens in manual.
Now time to light up the fire. Make sure this is not in frame just yet. Click the shutter release and fire the strobe. After this bring the fire into the frame and slowly wave it around the model for 15 seconds.
Enjoy your flaming portrait.
REMEMBER to put down the flame in a safe manner once you are done. Keep canvas tarp, water, and fire extinguisher handy all the time.
Travis has a you tube post that will be helpful as well.
On 15th August 2013, Minneapolis was treated a dose of Bollywood and boundless energy that Indians are known for. A flash mob broke out in the middle of 10th and Nicollet and we were treated to exquisite moves to “Badtameez Dil” and “Rang De Basanti”.
Here is short video of the what I could capture in my lens.
A short stop motion video using my Son’s first Lego construction. This video is made up of 38 photos. I could have made it longer, but arranging the lego elements was becoming a pain in the neck. Next time I will find a stabler surface to make one….
The initial raw movie was stitched using Light Room 4 – SlideShow module. Then fine tuning and sound mixing was carried out in iMovie.