Friday, December 31, 2010

Cheers!

I hope everyone is preparing for a wonderful, safe New Year gathering.

From 3C1D - Cheers!

May 2011 be happy, healthy and wealthy for us all.


Nikon d40
ISO 800
aperture f/4.5
shutter speed 1/10 (not bad for hand held)

Goodbye 2010.

xoxo,
Brandi

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Pine's a Little Different!

It's not often I look at the post before mine and immediately know what I'm going to shoot. Heck, I've made it obvious that I often shoot first and ask later, so to speak. This time, with Jay'me's lovely pine cone, I knew exactly what my subject was to be - my 4 year-old sons Christmas art project from preschool. He is very proud of it and when I told him I would take pictures he immediately beamed. I love the simple exuberance children possess.

You may not be able to tell but this thing is LOADED with glitter. And glitter is like sand - it gets in everything. But I simply had to shoot it. I fell back on an old habit and used my macro lens. I actually did take photos of the entire piece but decided I liked this one the best:



Canon 30D
Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro
Shutter 1/2000
Aperture f/2.8
ISO 100

I set-up my makeshift tripod and used one of my 500 watt hot lights to really set-off the highlights from the glitter. I used manual focus to ensure correct focus and adjusted white balance and contrast post shoot. All in all it came together fairly easily. I do want to try it again sometime as I already know what I'd do differently. But that's always the case. Happy New Year! See you all in 2011! Be safe and have fun tomorrow night.

Scott

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Wordless Wednesday with Jay'me

Cannon Rebel XT
1/320
f 13.0
54.mm
No flash
ISO 400

The poster (that's me) will post a photo and it's settings. No other verbiage is allowed. The commenter's (that's you) will guess in the comments section below what ties Tuesdays photo to Wednesdays photo. It can be a setting. It can be a play on words. It can be a theme. It can be anything. In almost every photo there are numerous ties thus creating no right or wrong answer. Just simply make a comment below and you'll be entered into our drawing to be our next guest photographer.


No previous photography experience required. In fact, wannabe's like us, are encouraged. The only criteria; you must be able to take a photo (any camera will do), email said photo and allow 3C1D to publish the photo and follow the rules...

Only one(1) guess per person.
Ready, Set, Go.....

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Winter Snow Crystals

Yes we did finally get some snow down south and yes I was out with my camera trying to capture it. Well that and a little sledding as well. I needed to get out and capture it fast because it will be gone in a day or so. No kidding, we are supposed to be 60 degrees in two days here. Crazy, crazy, so back to my picture.....



Nikon D90
Lens 18-200mm at 120mm
Aperture F/6.3
Shutter Speed 1/60 sec.
ISO-400
Off Camera Flash with orange filter, Nikon Speedlight SB-900

I knew that I was going to have to use a flash because I wanted to get the effect of glittering snow. I had to shine the flash through the branches of this weed, because that is what it is a weed, in order to do that. So I knew that I had to use my flash off camera and the Nikon D90 can be used in commander mode in order to control the flash. I believe the flash was turned down not quite as low as it can go, but close. I used the orange filter to soften some of the harsh blue/cool light that you get in the winter. When I first tried this, I had tried it on some leaves that were still on my tree and it actually gave the picture a very fally look to it. You can see that shot here if you would like to.

I love taking pictures of snow, especially if it is at all glittery and shiny. My connection to Brandi's is in the white, kind of glowiness look of both of them. A bit of a stretch, but I see it. Hope you do to. Enjoy the glitter of winter.

Sere

Monday, December 27, 2010

Playing the role of crazy lady with camera...

Is Brandi!
I was at it again today Kids. Putting myself in odd situations, talking with strangers and doing weird things all in the name of photography.
I went out this morning to run a few errands after dropping the 3 year old off at 'school'. I had my camera in tow (as I almost always do). I wasn't sure what I was going to photograph but I was on the look out.
There were more people out and about this beautiful Monday morning than there were on Christmas Eve. Seriously, people everywhere. Shopping, returning, watching.
I thought I should capture the moment in my own unique way.

Nikon D40 kit lens
shutter speed 1/20
aperture f/5.3
ISO 400
manual
natural light

How many of you were out doing this same exact thing? Special thanks to the random person walking out the door for the use of their shoe in this photograph.
I knew I wanted motion, I wanted depth and I wanted black and white. No reasons I just wanted it. A little toying, slowing of the shutter speed, upping the ISO for a grainier photo and adjusting the aperture to keep everything in balance and voila...

My tie in to yesterdays photo from my brother is the bizarre, abstract viewpoint. He wanted something a little different and so did I.

Now that I have made you all wait for the big announcement...
The winner of last weeks Wordless Wednesday.
Random.org has selected commenter 3. Jessi - I love this photo! It's beautiful. I see a tree in the picture from Tuesday. I hope that's a tree, I see. I think the connection is the tree in this one to the tree in Tuesdays.
Congratulations Jessi please email 3chicks1dudephoto@gmail.com for further instructions.

My real intent to connect the two photos together was the use of light. Scott's photo was all about the light. I was hoping to achieve a little more 'sunflare' than I did but when standing in 10'' of snow when not properly dressed you adapt your standards quickly.
Great guesses everyone. Can't wait to get to know Jessi better.

Sere is up to dazzle tomorrow. I hear she finally got some snow down south. Maybe we'll see some of it.
Keep it real Kids.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Christmas after Christmas with a guest

Brandi here. I hope you're all recovering from the holiday extravagance. My wonderful older brother Mathew is our guest today he won Jay'me's Wordless Wednesday. Matt has a gift for words so I'll let him say it all.


Not two steps in the front door and Brandi is on my case about taking a picture. Apparently, I'm your guest photographer for the day. This is your punishment for not being good boys and girls all year.

I'll admit to a touch of panic when The Sister reminded me of my duties.

I said duties. I'll give you a moment.

Moving on. Panic subsided when I saw Scott XII's picture and reminded myself to keep it simple, we're not going for Ansel Adams quality. So the following is an on the spot and off the hip rendition of a nativity scene. Look at the shot and declare my damnation if you choose. Or just make the connection. Mother and father looking in adoration at their baby boy with a sheep and some fancy glass in the background.

My best to you all at the end of 2010. Be happy. Be lucky. Love one another.



Nikon d40 kit lens


Tune in tomorrow where I'll have the winner of this weeks Wordless Wednesday. This is the last night to get your name in the hat.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

O Magnum Mysterium

This is the sound track and words for my post. Merry Christmas to you all and may you have a blessed day.
Align Center

O magnum mysterium

et admirabile sacramentum,
ut animalia viderent Dominum natum,
jacentem in pr├Žsepio.

Beata virgo, cujus viscera meruerunt
portare Dominum Christum, Alleluia!

Translation:

O great mystery
and wondrous sacrament,
that animals should see the newborn Lord
lying in their manger.

Blessed is the Virgin whose womb was worthy
to bear the Lord Jesus Christ. Alleluia!



Canon 30D
Canon EF 18-55mm f.3.5-5.8 with fish eye adapter
Shutter 1/25
Aperture f/4.5
ISO 800
Natural Light

All the best from us at 3C1D,

Scott


Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Eve with Brandi

Jay'me is celebrating the holiday with her family far away from a computer. I happily offered to post in place of her.

May your Christmas Eve be exactly what you want it to be.

Mine is....


Nikon D40 kit lens
natural light
shutter speed 1/10
aperture f3.5
ISO 800

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Two Turtle Doves....

Okay not sure if these guys are turtle doves but I do believe that they are doves of some sort and there's four instead of two, but hey who cares!! As I have stated before we do not have any snow right now so this picture is an archival picture, but I think that it ties in well with Brandi's picture from yesterday. It was great to be able to catch these guys up in the tree and it was before all the snow and ice had either melted or been disturbed. You know that quiet time after a snow storm where everything is just calm and beautiful. I love that time.



Nikon D2X
ISO-320
Aperture F/11
Shutter 1/400 sec.
18-200mm lens at 200mm
Exposure +1
Natural Lighting, No Flash

We might actually have a white Christmas, I'm hoping. It sounds like we might even get that snowfall on Christmas Eve which would be even more exciting. That will be so pretty.

Here's hoping that your holiday is calm and peaceful, filled with the love of family and friends.

Sere

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Brandi's Wordless Wednesday

The poster (that's me) will post a photo and it's settings. No other verbiage is allowed. The commenter's (that's you) will guess in the comments section below what ties Tuesdays photo to Wednesdays photo. It can be a setting. It can be a play on words. It can be a theme. It can be anything. In almost every photo there are numerous ties thus creating no right or wrong answer. Just simply make a comment below and you'll be entered into our drawing to be our next guest photographer.

What happens when I'm a guest photographer?
Good question. Guest photographers typically post on Sunday (that can be amended if needed). All you have to do as a guest is email us a photo sometime before 10pm on your post day. The photo has to be yours, it has to tie into the photo before it and we (3C1D) has to be given authorization to use your photo. That's it.

Why would I want to be a guest photographer?
Another grand question. Guest photographers get the creative challenge of working with other photographers to make their photo. Additionally, if you have a blog, website or such that you would like to "advertise" this is a good way to do that. We're happy to share a link to your space on the world wide web. But most importantly, you get to say that you were a photographer with 3C1D. It's a pretty prestigious title. *wink, wink*

But I'm not good enough!
You are good enough and gosh darn it people like you! We love photography of all kinds. Cell phone, point and shoot, high end professional grade. Anything goes around these parts. We believe that everyone out there has a viewpoint and we want to see it.

When will I know if I've won?
The contest will go on until the poster (that's me) announces the winner on his or her next post day. So if all things go according to plan I will announce today's winner on Monday. (Should there not be a guest photographer to post on Sunday I would then announce the winner on Sunday.) The poster (that's me) will then share the story behind that shot as well as their photo for that day.

How is the winner chosen? Are you guys playing favorites?
No favoritism here. Random.org will be used to generate the winner. Everyone that enters, regardless of what their guess is, has an equal chance of winning.

I want to be a photographer on your site but I don't ever win. What can I do?
Bribery kids. We all loved baked goods. I'm just sayin'.
Kidding aside, if you want a chance to come play along just send us an email 3chicks1dudephoto@gmail.com and ask. We're happy to oblige.

Ready.... Set.... GO!!!


Nikon D40 kit lens
aperture f/9
Shutter speed 1/1600
ISO 200

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Take What You Get

Okay, so all this talk of reflection and I had to give one more take on it. This time I went completely abstract and experimental. And, as is so often the case, I'm posting something completely different than I originally intended - love this pursuit of ours! Here's my post:

Canon 30D
Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro
Shutter 5 Seconds
Aperture f/5.0
ISO 800
Exposure Compensation -1 stop

The experiment is that I used a fish eye on a 100mm Macro lens. It was awful. I mean REALLY awful. All I got was a really close up and clear view at how the optics on the adapter just aren't that great. It literally became the subject. So much for that idea!

Then I noticed how cool the reflections off the front of the fish eye looked and set about trying to capture it. What followed went something like this: "Good God why didn't I buy a tripod yet!!!???" This was followed by "Good God why didn't I wear boots!!!???" And finally, "Good God I should have worn snow pants!!!" Instead I used body contortion, a leather protector, and came to terms with the fact that I was going to get wet. Oh well. My butt is starting to thaw out - I think I'll live.

You'll notice I underexposed a full stop. The purpose is to ensure the pin points of light remain pin points of light instead of a bloody mess of halos and bleed. If you haven't found the exposure compensation on your camera, find it now. It's a great friend.

In terms of post process, I sharpened a bit, fixed contrast, cropped in a little, and cooled the color temperature a touch. That's all I got for now folks. Now to knock the rest of the frost off my cheeks!

Happy Merry!

Scott

Monday, December 20, 2010

Hold on Tight-So Very Tight!

Cannon Rebel XT
1/60
f4.5
31.mm
ISO400

Reflection reflections reflections... When we take photos, we hope to use them to reflect upon later... right. Capture memories to savor later, stop time, hold on tight to the moment.

This time of year is when we really reflect on a the year about to become last year. We work hard at making GOOD memories with the ones we love. (at least we should be). Those of us blessed with children try to get those precious shots and wish we could stop time. I want them to grow up and be happy adults, just not so darn fast!
This photo is of my six year odl Maddie.
We enjoyed a brunch with Santa (YES ! She still believes ! ) Maddie was so polite and chatty with Santa. Sniffle, sniffle please let me remember her little mickey mouse voice.
Take lots of pictures and Ho! Ho! Ho! Merry Christmas, and the Happiest of Holidays to All!


Now for the Wordless Wednesday winner. Random.org helped us in finding Reese as our WINNER! Please email us at 3chicks1dudephoto@gmail.com. and we will help you with details.

This ones for you Reese...
Now don't you go falling in love with her Clark, 'cause I'm taken her with me when we leave here next month. Christmas Vacation ROCKS!
Thank you,
Jay'me

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Reflections

It's Sunday evening and do you know what time it is....
It's time for Brandi to introduce you to a new guest poster. Gather around kiddos you're in for a real treat.

Everyone I want to introduce you to my friend Jen. Jen was the first friend I made after my family moved from Iowa to Illinois when I was 3. I refuse to tell you how long it's been but let's just say it been a LONG time.
Jen gave me the freedom to "write anything I want". Heehee silly, silly girl. She should know me better than that.

Jen is a child psychologist by profession but her real passion is for running. For as long as I can remember Jen has been running in marathons. She's one of the nutty people that gets up at the ugliest hour of the day and runs 13miles just to "get started". When she's not running she's finding the best cupcakes around, traveling the world (usually following Dave Mathews Band), and taking photos of everything along the way.
Being relatively new to the photography game Jen got her Nikon D40 (copy cat) about a year ago. She's taken some pretty gorgeous photos with it including this one of Bainbridge Island, Washington.


Nikon d40 kit lens
aperture f/6.3
shutter speed 1/160
ISO 200

Jen's tie in is actually to my post on Friday, Sere's photo wasn't posted yet when Jen sent this to us. The tie in is the reflection. Reflection in the water or reflection in the true meaning of the holiday season. It's all reflection. Posting this for one of my oldest and dearest friends has given me a chance to reflect on our unique friendship. I'm so very lucky to have her in my life and being able to share a mutual love for photography... priceless.

Jay'me is up tomorrow. You all have until she posts to enter your name in the guest poster contest from last Wednesday. Just click here and put your name in the comment section. Random.org will select a winner when Jay'me posts tomorrow.

Thanks for playing Jen. And thanks to all of you for joining along in the fun.

xoxo,
Brandi

Red and White Puppy

Hi, Sere here and I have to apologize to everybody. I missed my day completely. I was taking care of an injured puppy and just completely forgot about my post. So needless to say I did not get out yesterday with my camera except to take a quick picture of my puppies. So that is the picture that you get today. Luckily my puppies are considered red and white so it actually fits with Brandi's red bellhopper photo.


Nikon D2X
Iso-400
Aperture F/16
Shutter Speed 1/60 of a second
18-200mm lens at 100mm
Nikon Speedlight 400 Flash

No post processing at all. This little guy is my only male and a stinker. He had crawled up the side of the basket he was in and had crashed at the very top of the pile of towels. Now remember his eyes are not open yet, so he did all of this blind. He was looking for mom I'm sure. Enjoy!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Freezing Friday Faces

Rut, what rut? Where is this rut that Scott speaks of? Oh, is it that giant hole the size of a 76 Buick sitting in the middle of my life!

Scott can speak for me. I've been in a rut. It's not from lack of interest on my part. It's from life (happy holidays here's a bucket of strees), cold (hello 10 degree highs for days) and it's dark for 20 hours a day. I've been brainstorming some inside ideas so watch out world.

I got a chance to step outside my suburban box and go down to the big city today. Chicago it's my kind of town. All the people, the hustle and bustle. It's something magical. As I strolled around I had the opportunity to meet Sandra. She stood about half way down the block, not at a corner like many of her comrades. Sandra's smile and warm holiday greetings for all the passersby caught my attention instantly.

So who is this woman standing in the middle of a city block, wishing people well?
She's none other than a Salvation Army bell ringer.


Nikon d40 kit lens
ISO 200
shutter speed 1/30 (what was wrong with me?)
aperture f/3.5


I knew I wanted to keep the bin red and tone down the background. Opening the picture in Photoshop Elements, I duplicated the photo. Took one photo and over exaggerated the reds, giving the collection bin great vibrant color. Then I took the other picture and almost completely desaturated it. Leaving just enough color to not wash it out (I hope). Using the lasso tool, I removed the collection bin in the over saturated photo and pasted it over the collection bin in the desaturated photo. Going back closely, I erased any bleed over and made it an almost seamless single photo.
The edit took about 10 minutes. Once you work with this kind of thing, it gets pretty easy.

There is probably no sound I associate more closely with Christmas than the ringing of the Salvation Army bells. I realize it's Friday Faces and I should highlight Sandra's beautiful face and not the red donation bin but I wanted my emphasis to be on the giving. The giving (of time, of money, of resources, of gifts) is what this holiday is all about. Go forth and give. Give of your heart, give of your soul and you'll be rewarded. I promise.


xoxo,
Brandi

PS - it's not too late to enter in the Wordless Wednesday for this week. Jay'me took a great shot, one that speaks directly to my heart. Click here and comment. It doesn't have to be nice. It doesn't have to be a guess. It just has to be something. Heck tell us what color your shirt is today and you'll be entered to win. Go now!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

A Little Something Different

I think it's safe to say we here at 3C1D have fallen into a rut of sorts. It's not a bad thing really - happens to everyone. When the holiday season descends at the speed of light upon all our heads with a dash of sub zero temperatures, some things get neglected. I won't speak for the chicks, but my creative juices have just been frozen a bit lately.

So tonight, on my way home from work (at 8:30pm), I found myself without a picture and short on ideas - not good at all. I can usually dig something up from my most recent shoots but frankly, there haven't been many recent shoots. It was while I was driving that I spotted the Norge Ski Jump in Cary, visible from my office. I had never been over there and yet it was shining like a beacon in the softly falling snow. AND (get this) the car thermometer read 23 degrees! Holy crap it's a heat wave! I've got my sign. It's time to do what this guy tried to do (see - ski jumper at about 13 seconds):


Don't even try to tell me you don't remember the agony of defeat! Besides, I really wanted to prove I could post a video too. That's done. Let's move on.

When I finally arrived at the jump (there were several forks in the road and I happen to guess right), there were about 10 kids sledding on a side hill. I thought about shooting them (with camera only mind you) but decided I would try to capture how freaking huge the jump is. I'm not certain, but I think I was looking at the worlds first extreme sport. Unfortunately there were no jumpers but I did have fun hiking around the base and seeing what I could do. Actually, I think I want another crack at it now that I've played a bit. Anyway, here's the shot I've decided to post.


Canon 30D
Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6
Shutter 1/25
Aperture f/4.0
Exposure Compensation -1 1/3 stop

You'll notice I underexposed this shot. I'd like to say there was a good reason but here's the truth. I had my camera set-up for bracketing and to aid with that my shutter was set to rapid fire. I had forgotten this little detail and began snapping single shots. What happens is that the camera exposes "correctly" the first shot, then follows with a shot that's underexposed and a shot that's overexposed. This is great for HDR and tough metering situations. But when you forget you've set it up this way, it can really screw you up. Additionally, I really prefer shooting in RAW. Wednesday however, I had cause to shoot in JPEG and I forgot to change that back too! Oh the horror!!!!

Alas, I've made due. And I think I'll get over that this isn't a perfect shot - not by a long shot. What I really love is the framing. And I will revisit this locale on some future date and do it right. For now, you get this definitely less than perfect view and one helluva hill.

Also, I posted 2 others here on our Flickr photo stream in case you want to see more. Thanks as always for stopping by. And remember, as the great Yogi Berra once said, "If you come to a fork in the road, take it!"

Scott

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Wordless Wednesday with Jay'me




Cannon EOS Rebel XT
1/4
f5.6
Manual
no flash
ISO 400

The poster (that's me) will post a photo and it's settings. No other verbiage is allowed. The commenter's (that's you) will guess in the comments section below what ties Tuesdays photo to Wednesdays photo. It can be a setting. It can be a play on words. It can be a theme. It can be anything. In almost every photo there are numerous ties thus creating no right or wrong answer. Just simply make a comment below and you'll be entered into our drawing to be our next guest photographer.


No previous photography experience required. In fact, wannabe's like us, are encouraged. The only criteria; you must be able to take a photo (any camera will do), email said photo and allow 3C1D to publish the photo and follow the rules...

Only one(1) guess per person.
Ready, Set, Go.....

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Mele Kalikimaka...

.... means Merry Christmas in Hawaiian, which is where I would LOVE to be about right now. Who wouldn't right? I was just listening to Christmas songs today and this one came on (you can't have Christmas songs without Bing Crosby singing some of them) which made me think about one of my Christmas pictures that I had taken a few days ago. So I am connecting to Brandi's picture by a song; along with the fact that Mr. Hippo looked like he was in some water and my picture has water in it.



I couldn't figure out how to align this center so, sorry.

Nikon D2X
Lens 18mm to 200mm at 105mm
Aperture F/8
Shutter Speed 1 sec.
ISO 400
No Flash, I did add a soft filter to this because I like the look of it and filters are fun, otherwise not much else was done to this picture.

If you look really closely you can see that this ornament says "Aloha Hawaii" on it. I have a tradition of picking up an ornament from every place that I vacation at. So our tree is full of Colton's handiwork and ornaments from the different places around the country we have been. It's a lot of fun to put the ornaments up and talk about and remember that particular vacation and something that we had done. Colton also really enjoys helping me to pick out the ornaments so it's a good way to get him to come shopping with me as well.

Sere

Monday, December 13, 2010

I wanna

Hippopotamus for Christmas! In case you're scratching your head and saying "Has Brandi lost her mind again?" here's a video link so you can "be in the know".



This is one of my favorite holiday songs. My three year old sings it fervently from the backseat every time it comes on.
So what does that have to do with this blog? Well, all these holiday photos and guess what I ran into while taking photos of a big Christmas tree in a mall plaza. That's right a hippopotamus.

Nikon D40 kit lens
ISO 400
shutter speed 1/200sec
aperture f/3.5

Nothing crazy or fancy about this photo. Just a good straight shot with zero post processing.

Now for some needed 3C1D business...
Scott misspoke (typed whatever) Myndi was not the winner from the most recent WW. This one here. The winner is about to announced. But first, to go with the new rules a little about my photo from that day and what I was going for in my tie in to this photo of Scott's.

The commenters that said that Bass Pro Shops was a place of worship were thinking the same way as I. In my house, the Bass Pro has served as the Sunday communion on more than one occasion.
Another straight shot, nothing fancy and minimal post processing. This cold weather is really taking it's toll on staged, posed, long photo shoots. One of the tricks I did use was a UV filter on my lens. An absolute must for cold, winter, snowy weather photos. I also made sure I turned properly to get a little back lighting from the sun. Shooting directly into the sun will wash out the sky. I couldn't wash out that beautiful blue sky.

Now to the winner.
Random.org has spoken. Commenter 4 is the lucky winner.
Jen P said...
I am going to guess this is a tribute to your husband Scott--who loves to fish and are those the doors to the Church you got married at in the picture from the day before? going out on a limb there but why not?

Congratulations Jen P. You're the lucky winner. Email us at 3chicks1dudphoto@gmail.com to make the arrangements.

Finally. Sorry we promised you another great photo from Myndi yesterday. Unfortunately life got the best of her and she wasn't able to send us a photo. Give us a shout when life settles down Myndi. We would love to have you back anytime.

Phew. I'm exhausted. That's all for now kiddos.

Later Dudes,
Brandi

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Tradition

Christmas is such an event these days. It has become a retail orgasm of sales and shopping, so much so that I think people forget sometimes to slow down, look around, and enjoy what Christmas really is. Whatever your persuasion on the Christian center that is Christmas, I think it's not going out on a limb to say that family and family traditions surrounding the holiday is one of the most fulfilling aspects of the season.

For me and my brood (Kristin and my two boys), traditions spring up when we least expect it. This year, Ethan has been immensely proud of his collection of 6 nutcracker ornaments (ironic since he's deathly allergic to tree nuts!). Every night he makes sure they are perched dutifully, protecting the base of his bedside lamp. When I mentioned that Grandpa has a fantastic collection of nutcrackers and that he might let Ethan borrow one, he was ecstatic. He went further and said that maybe Grampa would like to borrow one of his. A phone call later and tradition was born.

This is a picture of Grandpa's nutcracker. Ethan helped me set it up and I did my best not to appear in the shot. The ornament has the inscription "Friend to Friend." It was just too perfect. I used a long telephoto and a second tree to help obscure my presence. I was thwarted by my lack of tripod. I made due but I simply must get a new tripod. It's time. I got a shot I can live with, but I really want another go at it.


Canon 30D
Canon EF 75-300mm f4-5.6 (pretty crappy lens really)
Shutter Spread 1/15
Aperture 5.0
ISO 400
Christmas Lighting only

So what traditions do you have that might be unique or surprising? I'd love to hear about them! Stay tuned for our guest photographer Myndi, the winner of the most recent WW challenge. Be safe this season and be sure to take the time to enjoy your traditions.

Basking in family tradition,

Scott

Friday, December 10, 2010

Faces Friday with Jay'me

1/5
f5.6
55mm
no flash
manual
ISO 400

I love killing two birds with one stone. I know not the Christmas passage you think should accompany this shot right? Well I didn't kill any birds at all. I was going to get our next photo for our new 2010 ornament and Christmas Cards AND new photo for Faces Friday (are you counting 3 also) Well, sometimes mama bears let their cubs sled too long and they get too tired and cranky to be good little models.

So I was setting up the tripod while they were moaning and groaning and I said "Forget it guys, We'll do it tomorrow!" They thought I was sick or something. But happy to not have to dress up in their Sunday finest and take direction for the next half hour or so.
There was the shot staring right at me. I give you a photo of the last two years past. It's a tradition I've started and think everyone with kids (or pets) should try. The kids LOVE them and so do I.
So you may be thinking that's not Mr Duck Taped Cannon elph, nor is that her iphone 3, You're right that's my old Cannon EOS Rebel XT with a new battery and and same old broken lens. She kicks butt comparing to my other options, but she does need to be moving along. So all of you good kids, not on the naughty list, tell Santa that Jay'me would really love an upgrade...

This photo is straight off my camera. I used a tripod. yes that's broken too. Trooper Jay'me wraps her camera strap tight to stabilize it, because the screw is missing. I worked in manual and turned off the flash. Manual focus allowed me to focus on the color ornament in the center and deeper in the tree.
I hope you all enjoy!
Jay'me

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Frosty the Snowman

Brandi has been playing around with different perspectives. Scott has been using HDR and both have been getting some great shots. Poor Jay'me has been having some technical difficulties and doing a great job working with what she has. My latest photography obsession has been getting those awesome warm, glowy, Christmas lights as a background. I have spent the last few nights practicing, messing around with all my settings to get this right. It is probably because the Christmas season is in full swing. We, down in the central part of the state have no snow (all you northerners are stealing it from us) to use for my Christmas portraits, so lights it is. I actually love Christmas lights, they are one of the absolute best parts about Christmas but I have always had a hard time getting them right. So while this shot is far from exactly where I want to be, considering where I was at (read, I shudder at looking at my Christmas light picture archives) I was pretty pleased with what I got.


Nikon D2X
ISO 400
Lens My Nifty Fifty again (love this lens!!!)
Aperture - F/2.8
Shutter Speed - 1 sec.
No Flash

All I did to the picture was give it a touch of fill light in Lightroom. Mr. Snowman was an absolutely perfect subject. He never argued or gave me a goofy, unnatural smile and he always sat exactly where I wanted him to sit. I had a lot of fun practicing on him. My connection to Brandi's picture is tenuous at best. If you look at her shot you can see some holiday lights and decorations set up around the storefront, that's what I used as my connection. Sorry but it is the Christmas/holiday season and I had to jump on anything I could :).

The key to getting nice Christmas lights is to have a really, slow shutter speed, so use a tri-pod or something to help you stay steady, and as low(wide open) an aperture as you can get to get that nice blur look. Also your subject should be not too close to the lights themselves. Mr. Snowman here was a few feet away in reality, and do not, I repeat do not, use a flash unless you absolutely must. Here is an article worth reading about to help you with those holiday light pictures.

Now settle yourself down with the lights off and your holiday lights on, grab yourself a cup of hot chocolate or coffee or whatever floats your boat, and join me in enjoying this most beautiful part of the holiday season.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Another revised wordless Wednesday

Thanks to everyone for hanging in there while we figure out how best to make Wordless Wednesday work. I'm (Brandi) going to go a little astray today and revamp the way WW is going to work moving forward. I hope my partners in crime don't mind as I'm making these changes without consultation.
Life is nothing if not an evolution. So here's the last (and God willing final) way we're working WW.

The poster (that's me) will post a photo and it's settings. No other verbiage is allowed. The commenter's (that's you) will guess in the comments section below what ties Tuesdays photo to Wednesdays photo. It can be a setting. It can be a play on words. It can be a theme. It can be anything. In almost every photo there are numerous ties thus creating no right or wrong answer. Just simply make a comment below and you'll be entered into our drawing to be our next guest photographer.

What happens when I'm a guest photographer?
Good question. Guest photographers typically post on Sunday (that can be amended if needed). All you have to do as a guest is email us a photo sometime before 10pm on your post day. The photo has to be yours, it has to tie into the photo before it and we (3C1D) has to be given authorization to use your photo. That's it.

Why would I want to be a guest photographer?
Another grand question. Guest photographers get the creative challenge of working with other photographers to make their photo. Additionally, if you have a blog, website or such that you would like to "advertise" this is a good way to do that. We're happy to share a link to your space on the world wide web. But most importantly, you get to say that you were a photographer with 3C1D. It's a pretty prestigious title. *wink, wink*

But I'm not good enough!
You are good enough and gosh darn it people like you! We love photography of all kinds. Cell phone, point and shoot, high end professional grade. Anything goes around these parts. We believe that everyone out there has a viewpoint and we want to see it.

When will I know if I've won?
The contest will go on until the poster (that's me) announces the winner on his or her next post day. So if all things go according to plan I will announce today's winner on Monday. (Should there not be a guest photographer to post on Sunday I would then announce the winner on Sunday.) The poster (that's me) will then share the story behind that shot as well as their photo for that day.

How is the winner chosen? Are you guys playing favorites?
No favoritism here. Random.org will be used to generate the winner. Everyone that enters, regardless of what their guess is, has an equal chance of winning.

I want to be a photographer on your site but I don't ever win. What can I do?
Bribery kids. We all loved baked goods. I'm just sayin'.
Kidding aside, if you want a chance to come play along just send us an email 3chicks1dudephoto@gmail.com and ask. We're happy to oblige.

Now, has that answered all the questions? I hope so. Be sure to ask if it does not.

Thanks for being such awesome readers. I speak for everyone when I say we're honored to be here doing what we love and sharing it with people around the world. We treasure every comment (nice or constructive) and want to hear more from all of you. Even you, sitting there in the bunny slippers.
Here's my photo for today. Look for the winner announce and story behind the photo on my next post day (Sunday or Monday).
XOXO,
Brandi


Nikon D40 kit lens
shutter speed 1/1250
aperture f/3.5
ISO 400

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Where Do You Worship?

When I saw Jay'me's post I immediately thought of the tree huggers I know (full disclaimer - I'm a bit of a tree hugger but you wouldn't find me living in one trying to save an owl). Bio-diesel is indeed a fantastic alternative fuel - I should know, I am a commodity broker and have been talking about it for around 6 years now. And it's firmly entrenched in the debate over fossil fuels, drilling, e-cars, solar panels, windmills, and other alternatives. The passion surrounding how we meet our energy needs is incredibly strong and it got me thinking about other things in life that elicit similar passions. Coupled with Dan's great post on the parade he witnessed, I thought of church.

Canon 30d
Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6
Shutter 0.4, 1.6, 6
Aperture f/11.0
ISO 400

This is a church easily visible on Lake Cook Road. You'll see it on the south side of the street just west of Brinker, sitting atop a hill and poking the clouds with a magnificent steeple. At night the lights are fantastic. I've never been inside this church but I've often wished I could shoot a few pics in the evening. When I finally got a chance it was well past evening but the lights were still shining bright. It was meant to be!

When I stopped to get a few photos I originally thought I would have a good shot at the steeple and the overall lighting effects. Once I got close, I found the strong shadows and warm light really putting on a show with the textures in the brick and stone. You know me, a total sucker for close-ups. I ended up bracketing the exposure hoping to try HDR. I actually started with just 1 RAW file and thought I had a good shot. But I ran the HDR software on 3 RAW files and the results were just 10 times better. The shadows in particular were suddenly visible and became integral to the mood of the whole shot. I feel like I'm becoming a one trick pony but when it works, it works!

Like Jay'me before me, this is an archive shot (I took this in October). I've been looking for a chance to post but I never really got the chance. Today, I had the perfect opportunity.

So what's your passion? What finds your Nemo? What flies your flag? For me, there are many passions. But certainly one is photography and sharing it with the 3 chicks and our fabulous readers. Thanks as always for stopping by.

Monday, December 6, 2010

The Unusual

Brandi again... sorry. Our poor Jay'me has a technology black cloud following her around. I received this a short time ago.

Alright we have no Internet. I thought for sure my darling husband would come home and fix EVERYTHING. Sob... it didn't happen.
I took this today thinking it was a welcome yet strange sight like the decked out Santa.
This is the first bio diesel I have seen and it's at a BP. It was a good .50 more expensive then reg gas.




iPhone 3
1/40sec
F/2.8
ISO 100

Good thing through the magic of cell phones I was able to get her picture.
Jay'me you are a SUPER TROOPER!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Another photo from the urban correspondant

Hey kids, Brandi here! BigDan won last weeks Wordless Wednesday and he'll be tonight's photographer.
BigDan first visited us here. He came back for more. Silly, silly boy.

Dan always says it best himself so I'll turn things over to him....

Sere's picture made me immediately think of finding a place where Kath and I could have 5, 10, maybe 15 dogs. We absolutely love them. Both of our dogs are special needs dogs and when we went on her web site and found out she had retired breeders, we almost called the realtor. But, as cute as the puppy is, I also thought Christmas.

After mass, I took a couple or twenty beautiful shots of the Nativity Window in our historical landmark Church. It was back lit by the morning light and the central birth scene is gloriously surrounded by hundreds of pieces of glass, all picking up bits of light. The window is two stories high and was originally made in the 1880s. It is truly irreplaceable. On the drive home, I was beginning to compose a paragraph about the progression of various ethnic groups that have made up the congregation in its 150 year history and how the art of the church reflects those changes when we were stopped at Western and Roosevelt by a couple of cops and and a private van blocking the intersection. We pulled into the White Castle parking lot, got out of the car and watched motorcycle after motorcycle after motorcycle parade by in their journey from 83rd Street to Belmont. I was shooting like mad, but pretty soon slowed down and started waving. Within minutes I had tears streaming down my face as Kath and I waved and they honked back. The sound was incredible, almost moving your soul... and then, every once in a while people would laugh as some scooter would putt by. It seems we had run into the annual Toys for Tots Motorcycle Parade.

I am a sucker for acts of kindness. Whether it is God's Son coming to us to teach us about Peace or several hundred motorcyclists riding down Western Avenue to bring toys for kids in need, to me, it is all Christmas.



Nikon D3000
VR 18-200 mm F/3.5-5.6
Focal Length 170 mm
F/10
1/200s
ISO 400

Thank you Dan. Thank you for sharing your story. Thank you for being a wonderful, kind, human being. Thank you for hanging out with us here at 3C1D.
Go check out Dan's blog here. While you're there (or here if you like) wish Dan a Happy Birthday, for today is his special day.

Thanks again, Dan. Come back anytime, we love having you.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Friday Faces with Sere

Better late then never today. My day ran away from me and now here it is almost one in the morning and I am just now putting my picture up. Had a wonderful evening with friends so I hope you all will forgive me.

I am on a total animal kick here lately. My litter of all white siberian huskies are now at around four weeks old and beginning to be at that totally cute stage that puppies get. I couldn't resist taking one of my potential Christmas card pics and using it for my post today. They are just too cute not to :)....

Nikon D2X
Fifty Nifty Lens
Aperture F/1.8
Shutter Speed 1/50 sec.
ISO-400
No Flash, natural lighting

I was on a mission today to get some cute, updated pictures of these guys for my website and also to be able to find one that I could send as a Christmas card to my customers this year. I had this idea in my head of what I wanted my picture to look like and I couldn't quite capture what I wanted, came close, but not quite so I will need to try again.

It was kind of dreary out today so natural lighting was hard, i.e. the wide open aperture I had. I could have bumped up my film speed, but you sacrifice some quality doing that so I kept it at 400. A wide open aperture gives you a pretty limited depth of field though. I tried some shots with a flash but the lighting was not right and working with a slow flash is frustrating with active pups so I did away with it pretty quickly. I added a little bit of fill light in Lightroom, but that was about all I did to the shot.

Night, night I am off to bed now.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

My Answer

I have a guess as to what Scott was using to tie his photo from yesterday into Jay'me's photo from Tuesday.

The answer is in my photo....

Nikon D40 kit lens
shutter speed 1/1250sec
aperture f/4.5
ISO 400 (because I'm an idiot and didn't change it from being inside)
35mm
natural light with gold reflector from underneath

Could it be "a birds eye view"?

This photo is of a tree that is set up in my backyard for the holiday card photo I've been working on. I got out my 6' ladder, (it was too cold for the 16' ladder that would have really gotten me a birds eye view) climbed up and snapped away.
No big mystery or difficulty with this photo, I merely changed my vantage point. Sometimes a fresh perspective is all that's needed to liven up a photo.

Stand in a new spot and check things out, you just might like it.

~
Brandi

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Wordless Wednesday with Scott

The poster must post only one(1) photo with settings. No additional verbiage (other then the rules) is allowed.

Commenter's (that's you) must comment and guess how the photo associates with the previous (Tuesday's) photo. We will take a look at every commenter's comments and randomly select a winner on the following Friday. The winner will get to be our guest photographer on the following Tuesday. If you can't make Tuesday, we will pick another day that works for you. We aren't too picky. So if you think you have an answer (or even if you don't), leave a comment, you might just win!

No previous photography experience required. In fact, wannabe's like us, are encouraged. The only criteria; you must be able to take a photo (any camera will do), email said photo and allow 3C1D to publish the photo and follow the rules...

Only one(1) guess per person. All rules strictly enforced with a paddle (Brandi style)!

Ready, Set, Go.....

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Cheater Cheater Pumpkin Eater

We have deer preying on our pumpkins, smashing and noshing away as I type. That would be fun to catch. I've been in awe of the many verity of Hawks and Owls living all around us FOREVER! They would be fun the catch on film too! Mr. Duck Tape (Cannon elph) and I had a rough day today... So I give you a gift from my Cannon Rebel XT archives.

Cannon Rebel XT
1/125
f 5.6
55.mm
no flash
ISO 400

As you can see I did not take this photo today... These four little guys would be toast or birdie popsicles if they were hanging around in these parts of the woods.
I hope they are well on their way to somewhere warm. This was taken with the camera I'm missing so very, very much.
I can't wait for spring already. There are snow flurries and I'm still excited for the pristine snows and frosted winter wonderland. But I can't help wanting spring. I love our changes of season. We are really spoiled with the wonder of change.
Now, I hope I have talked in circles enough to have mixed you all up enough to forgive me for not playing by the exact rules.

Warm Wishes !
Jay'me




Monday, November 29, 2010

Bird of Prey

Sorry for my thoroughly boring title here. Between several computer quirks and issues and the fact that I almost forgot that today was my day, I'm just glad to be able to get a photo up. I hope everybody had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. I still have guests visiting, which I love, but it makes it hard to stay on top of things. So I have to admit, this photo is from my archives.

Brandi's fabulous photo with the feather made me think of the eagles that come to visit us in droves during the winter season. I live near a dam on the Mississippi River and the river here doesn't freeze like it does elsewhere. For that reason, we are one of the areas where bald eagles come to fish around the dam in the still flowing waters. I have heard that there are some HUGE catfish swimming around that divers have seen. We haven't caught one yet, but my family keeps hoping...

Bald eagles are one of those creatures that make you stop and just reflect on life, freedom, America, flying and a whole host of other things. I try every year to capture some of those reflections with my camera. Sadly it is very difficult for me to do. In this picture I wanted to try and capture the intensity of the gaze that all wildlife predators have. I turned it to black and white for dramatic effect and because the day was grey and icky. I also had to zoom in quite a bit because I don't have my 400mm telephoto lens that I am dying to get! Anybody looking to get rid of one let me know. My wildlife photography dream is still going strong :0).

Sere

Nikon D2X
Lens 18-200mm at 200mm
ISO-400
Aperture F/8
Shutter Speed 1/250

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Reflection

Reflection has many definitions.

Scott's version of reflection is defined as
Something, such as light, radiant heat, sound, or an image, that is reflected

Here's my version of reflection
Mental concentration; careful consideration


Nikon D40 kit lens
Shutter speed 1/320sec
Aperture f/4.0
Focal length 24.00mm
ISO 200

Whenever I'm near the water it seems to take me over. Giving me peace, quieting the noise in my head and giving me a moment of reflection. The fact that water also reflects like a mirror is not lost on me. Perhaps standing near the edge and seeing myself in the clear water is what allows for that quiet moment.

Capturing water right as it's forming into ice is harder than one would think. Light, as with all photos, is crucial. Harsh sun and you'll lose the details. Cloudy sky and you'll lose the reflection. So I knew I needed to head out today at the "prime time". "Prime time" or "the golden hour" the last hour of daylight, which sadly around these parts is 4pm.
Also posing a problem is the need for depth, structure if you will. Something to ground the photo. Just a picture of an ice edge is rather blah, as I found out.
As I stood at the waters edge, reflecting and thinking of what I could do to "make" a photo happen, a soft, tiny, whisper of a feather floated down and landed just beside me.



"The day is done, and the darkness, Falls from the wings of Night, As a feather is wafted downward, From an eagle in his flight”
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow


Enjoy the moment of reflection.
xoxo,
Brandi

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Faces from Colorado


Canon 30d
Shutter 1/125
Aperture f/4.5
ISO 100
Natural Light

I've spent a week or so in Colorado for the Thanksgiving holiday and here are 2 of my favorite people in the world: my brother Matt and my nephew Josh. I have so much to be thankful for and this is a good representation of it. I spent the day skiing and laughing more than I've laughed in a while.

For this shot, I was immediately struck by the cool reflection. It's funny, I skied all day with my camera strapped to my back and the shot I'm using could have been done without wearing skis at all.

I really want to tell you all more but frankly, I'm exhausted and I have an unbelievable journey ahead of me. More on the later I'm sure. Happy Thanksgiving everyone and kudos to B for the awesome banner.

Scott

Friday, November 26, 2010

Faces Friday with Jay'me

Cannon elph
duck tape
1/60
f 4.9
18.6
ISO160


'Tis the season for friends and family. Hugs, love and warm fuzzys. This little sweetie (Maddie) has a huge crush on her uncle Craig. She is in heaven in this photo. I took lots of photos but came back to this one because it was the first and most authentic. I know the back ground it loud and the flash is bleaching out their color.
This is the best I've got. Love is always good enough - heck it's the BEST!
Jay'me

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Let's Eat

From our tables to yours, Happy Thanksgiving.



Nikon D40 kit lens
ISO800
f/3.8
ss 1/40sec

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Wordless Wednesday with Sere

Well folks, big surprise I am up yet again for Wordless Wednesday :). We also are still looking for Rachel, the winner of last week's Wordless Wednesday. I don't believe we have heard from you yet. Please contact us at 3chicks1dudephoto@gmail.com.

The poster must post only one(1) photo with settings. No additional verbiage (other then the rules) is allowed.

Commenter's (that's you) must comment and guess how the photo associates with the previous (Tuesday's) photo. We will take a look at every commenter's comments and randomly select a winner on the following Saturday. The winner will get to be our guest photographer on the following Tuesday. If you can't make Tuesday, we will pick another day that works for you. We aren't too picky. So if you think you have an answer (or even if you don't), leave a comment, you might just win!

No previous photography experience required. In fact, wannabe's like us, are encouraged. The only criteria; you must be able to take a photo (any camera will do), email said photo and allow 3C1D to publish the photo and follow the rules...

Only one(1) guess per person. All rules strictly enforced with a paddle (Brandi style)!

Ready, Set, Go.....


Nikon D90
Nifty Fifty Fixed 50mm lens
Aperture F/2.8
Shutter Speed 1/60 sec.
ISO-200
On camera flash

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

That is sick

Literally.
The tie that binds Scott's photo yesterday and mine today is that both will make you sick.



Nikon d40 kit lens
ISO 200
aperture f/11
shutter speed 1/15sec
manual, natural light

Nauseous yet?

I've been lamenting about being off my mojo in my photography lately. I've whined about it quite a bit actually. Today I set out in search of my mojo.
I searched my yard, no luck.
I searched my car, not there either.
In the end I found it hiding at a local park.

Somehow I decided that climbing on a tire swing in the rain and spinning myself around while taking photos would be a good idea. I must have lost my mind while looking for my mojo.
My stomach recovered sometime around dinner time even though these were taken at lunch time.

I should share with those of you that are actually interested in attempting this photo, the key to making this photo work was the cloudy sky. If it had been full sun I would not have been able to get my f-stop to f/11 (allowing for the tire to stay in focus) while slowing my shutter speed so you could see the spin in the mulch below.

Have fun, go play, and get sick.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Burger's the size of puppies!

So it's confession time. Sometimes here at 3C1D, I shoot photos and look for a connection later. In fact, I've even admitted to it here. Most of the time it works well. After all, Brandi and I have already decided we are twins somehow mysteriously separated at birth. But this time, I'll admit, the connection is tenuous at best. The truth is that I'm just not able to do a lot of leg work and I felt compelled to post this photo simply because the burger was HUGE!



Canon EF 50mm f/1.4
Shutter Speed 1/30
f1.4
ISO 400
Natural Light

This is a place called Jack 'N Grill. It's a restaurant in Denver that was made famous on the show "Man Versus Food." In that episode, the host attempted to eat a 7 pound breakfast burrito. Naturally, when I decided to visit my sister in Denver for Thanksgiving I knew I had to sample this gargantuan concoction. Turns out they have enormous burgers too.

This is my nephew's attempt at eating this burger. He did not quite finish it but I did manage to capture the moment appropriately.

The bad news for me is I had to use an ISO setting of 1600 and an aperture of f1.4. The result is the noise and general softness. It's unfortunate but it's what I had to do.

Okay, I'm going to keep this short because I'm in the middle of cooking and I gotta get back to it. Thanks for checking in and I promise to try and connect a little better next time.

Scott

PS - The 7 pound burrito is bigger than it is tasty. It was still very good and the record for finishing it in one sitting is held by a woman and she ate it all in 28 minutes!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

3 Peas in a Pod





Cannon PowerShot SD790is (Elph)
Duck tape
1/60
f4.9
18,mm
ISO 80

This ties in with the last two posts - Irresistible babies and dogs...

I believe I'm at the desperate stage now. I'm feeling done with the iphone camera and my little broken Elph can't focus up close at all. I have to squeeze the camera to get correct contacts inside to keep it operating. It's actually held together with DUCK TAPE ! It lost it's end on one side and it's poor guts were all visible to the naked eye. I did an emergency tape job. She doesn't quite focus like she used to - but if you baby her, she'll work - sometimes. I have to stand way back then zoom in via photoshop later. It's pretty much the same as my iphone in capability (or lack there of).

Today's post is of our three baby Frenchies (French Bulldogs). They are 13days old, just starting to open their eyes and talking in their crazy wild dreams. How does something that has never even seen daylight have chasing dreams? Their feet are going and they're barking at something. I really want to see what they're chasing or what's chasing them.

I'm going to checkout the new Powershot seeing how awesome Amanda Post was with the glass art. It will step up to the plate while I figure out a solution for a big camera.
I see they are very reasonably priced and are great little, very capable cameras.
Stay tuned,
Jay'me

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Nope, I Don't Want to Share

Hello it's Sere here, stepping in for poor Scott. His family had some car troubles on the road to Denver, all is okay, but you get me today instead of him. Hopefully he will be able to show us something beautiful soon. First though some other 3C1D business to attend to.

I have overridden Brandi's executive decision from yesterday, see how all this equality works, all of us are executives around here. Since I am posting today I will be announcing our Wordless Wednesday winner today. Drumroll please for our winner for this week..... Congratulations Rachel, you are the lucky winner! Please email 3chicks1dudephoto@gmail.com for further instructions and let us know a date that works for you. We can't wait to see your photo!

Okay we have some more cuteness going on today so looker beware.


Nikon D2X
Lens 18-70mm at 56mm
ISO-100
Aperture F/4.5
Shutter Speed 1/500
Natural Lighting on Shutter Priority

My connections to Brandi's post, besides the cuteness factor was the wood in Nanook's mouth, like the wooden block little Ryan was holding.

This was not the picture I had planned on posting today. I had another one that was probably better technically, but I just thought this was such a fun picture. I guess I could have the connection of playing as well. I wish Nanook had maybe turned his head some my direction so I could have gotten more of his face, but he was more interested in running around. My son had let him out to play. I have no idea where he found the stick, but he was so cute playing with it, that I had to get my camera out to get some shots of it. I was on shutter priority so that I could get the action as much as possible, since huskies as a rule don't sit still for very long.

Have a great day tomorrow and we'll see who ends up being next.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Squishy Face Friday - reader beware

This is your caution, the below picture is so ridiculously cute you will find yourself wanting a baby. While I want everyone to look at every picture posted here if you cannot handle a severe case of the "I wanna baby"ies please do not move forward. I'll give you a moment to decide if you can handle it.



Here is another warning. I'll keep talking to you for a few moments to allow you to make a good decision. Oh, I should mention this is Brandi. Scott and his wife and two young boys are traveling by car from the Chicago area to Denver to spend the Thanksgiving holiday with family. Don't worry Scott will be posting tomorrow once they are settled in Denver. Your prayers for Scott and his wife are appreciated. Can't imagine traveling that far with a 2 year old and a 4 year old, even though both his boys are terrific.

Have I given you enough time yet? Have you made the right choice?

Here goes... last chance....

Nikon D40 kit lens
f/5.0
Shutter speed 1/400sec
ISO 800
manual
natural light

This is Ryan. He's a dear friends youngest boy. They came over for a play date today and Ryan was my perfect model. Well, as perfect as a one year old, that just learned to walk and is a crazy crawler can be.
His happy little face is simply contagious.

I wish I could have closed up my aperture (higher f stop number) so I could have gotten a little better focus on his eyes as well as the block. Unfortunately, I had to keep my shutter speed high to keep up with his fast movement which meant moving up (lower number fstop) to keep proper exposure.
As I've lamented before my camera does horrible with high ISO. Normally with a camera that can handle higher ISO, you could have bumped that up (maybe to 1200ish) to allow the shutter speed and aperture to be more to my liking. Alas, I didn't get that option.
I'm still really happy with this photo. He's a beautiful little boy and I really feel his contagious smile through the picture.
My tie in to Jay'me's wooden spindles is the wood block that Ryan is holding. Weak, I know, but a girls gotta do what a girls gotta do.

One more day to try to get in on this weeks Wordless Wednesday. Scratch that I'm making an executive decision, two more days. Sere will post the winner with her post on Sunday.
We're still looking for Kevin McQuire. Paging, Kevin McQuire. Kevin McQuire please check in at 3chicks1dudephoto@gmail.com. You won, now you just have to claim your prize.

Have a wonderful weekend everyone. Scott will be here tomorrow with something fantastic from Denver!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Oh My Spindles

iphone
no flash
no tripod
no fun - okay a little
f 2.8
ISO 80

By George I've got it... All of us iphone photo enthusiasts really need iphone tripods. They will look like your iphone shell meets business card holder with legs. I don't think $ millions are in my future with that one.
About the picture: This is the back of an Amish made cherry chair. I really had to be steady, keep adjusting the dimmer switch in my kitchen, and move most of my clutter around so I could have a clean backdrop in a decent light source. yep a real TECHNICAL process!
The colors in the final product were pretty distracting. The background color came off as dirty salmon pick with my iphone. I'm starting to feel as though I'm reliving my high school photo class. All my pictures have been black and white lately. Back then all we wanted was to break into color. There's something to say about the simplicity and raw artistry involved in black and white. Composition becomes my major focal point. I think this should always be a the major component of every photographers thought process as they click away.
I'm glad I'm not in the dark room. However, it was fun and I'm glad to be reminded of it.

Please revisit yesterdays Wordless Wednesday with Sere and take a crack at solving her mystery of the connection to Tuesdays post.
My connection to Sere's post is the vertical composition. I purposely moved away from iron and went to wood. Keeping it fresh, you know?
I would love to team up with my fellow 2 chicks and pachyderm and work in my forge while they shoot hot steel and sparks. (Hint, Hint)
No matter what - Keep on clicking on...
Jay'me

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Wordless Wednesday with Sere

Yep I am up again for another Wordless Wednesday. You all are soooo lucky haha! But first some quick business to take care of. I believe that we are still looking for Kevin McQuire to contact 3chicks1dudephoto@gmail.com regarding last week's Wordless Wednesday. Please, please contact us, we would really love to see your work! Alright, onward ho...

The poster must post only (1) one photo with settings. No additional verbiage (other then the rules is allowed).

Comment's (that's you) must comment and guess how the photo associates with the previous (Tuesday's) photo. We will take a look at every commenter's comments and randomly select a winner on the following Saturday. The winner will get to be our guest poster on the following Tuesday. If you can't make Tuesday, we will pick another day that works for you. We aren't too picky. So if you think you have an answer (or even if you don't) leave a comment, you might just win!

No previous photography experience required. In fact, wannabe's like us, are encouraged. The only criteria; you must be able to take a photo (any camera will do), email said photo, allow 3C1D to publish the photo and follow the rules....

Only one (1) guess per person. All rules strictly enforced with a paddle (Brandi style)!

Ready, Set, Go....



Nikon D90
Lens Nifty Fifty 50mm fixed lens
ISO-200
Aperture f/3.5
Shutter 1/500 sec.
Natural Lighting, Manual Settings

HINT, HINT, HINT..... It is not the fact that both are in black and white! Look deeper my friends!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The ties that bind

The last few days we've seen lots of details. Scott's tiny marble with all of it's nicks and chips. A photo full of circles and light flair. Amanda's glass ball with all the bubbles, spots of color and blurs of background. All beautiful, remarkable details.
I've got details of a different type. The details that make something possible.


I spent some time playing on the tracks yesterday (Monday). I started off taking some photos of the abandoned train cars on the tracks but got bored. I need more, I needed to see what kept everything together. I needed details.
Anyone can see the cars but nobody can see the bolts and ties that keep everything together. Without these nifty little plates and bolts the entire system would fall apart and the train would derail. How can you not obsess over that?

I took the picture using the more vivid setting in my camera. I did this knowing that particular setting really brings out the rust spotting on metal. I knew I wanted to make this photo my "almost black and white". In Photoshop Elements 8 I upped the contrast, brightened a smidge, converted it to black and white and then added a warm filter with an adjusted opacity of almost 50%.
In the end I spent a quick 5 minutes on the computer because I knew the finished look I was going for when I shot the photo. Not bad, not bad at all.

Sere has another Wordless Wednesday tomorrow. I'm thinking we need to move things around a bit next week. Poor Scott and Sere have gotten all the Wordless Wednesdays of late.

Be Well!
Brandi

Monday, November 15, 2010

Amanda, how much do we love ya?

We are so lucky to have our first repeat guest photographer.
We were first introduced to her here and then she won again last week

In Amanda's words:
I thought I would give a little more detail this time. As you know my name is Amanda and I love photography! I have considered myself a photographer for about 10 years though I have taken breaks. I recently started to edit using Photoshop CS5. My main subject these days is my son, but I am in love with taking landscapes and macros. Ialso crochet and sew when I have the time. I am currently working on newborn props for myself and my aunt who is a great photographer.
Sorry if that rambled... :-)


Didn't ramble at all Amanda. It's so great to get to know you even better. To see more of Amanda you can pop on over to her blog http://querylovephotography.blogspot.com. Go on over and follow her, I do. Oh and this is Brandi in case you didn't know.


Now on to the photo. Here's the story behind the picture:
When I looked at Scott's photo I instantaneously knew what my subject would be. I took a similar photo in high school, though it wasn't as cool as Scot ts, of a glass ball that had a little world with butterflies and green in it. I love that photo, but I didn't want to recreate what I or Scott had done, just use the inspiration. So I got my glass ball that has orange and air bubbles inside it and found some natural light with some cool background to reflect inside the ball and voila! I got what you see here (with a little editing thrown in)!

Thanks again! I really do enjoy your challenge and I find it is very cool that you give your readers a chance to have a go at it.


Canon Powershot A495
Exposure 1/1250
f/4.5
ISO 800

Excellent job Amanda! Gorgeous as always.
I'm already getting excited about how to follow it up.

Scott awarded last Wednesdays wordless winner already. Kevin McQuire you need to give us a shout at 3chicks1dudephoto@gmail.com so we can make proper arrangements. As Amanda would tell you, it's an easy process. We like to share our sandbox so we always play nice.

Thanks again Amanda!!!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

You Spin Me Round Round

Let's all give a round of applause to Jay'me and her efforts to soldier on in the absence of a camera (sorry iphone users - it's not really a camera in my eyes). Were it I, I'd probably have a brand new credit card bill and a camera worth drooling over. It's fortunate not everyone is as impulsive as I. So Jay'me , well done! You did a great job capturing a photo despite your limitations! I'm proud to call you a co-conspirator.

Moving on, what I noticed immediately with Jay'me's post were the arcs. There are at least 3 circles implied and I would probably say there are actually 5. I don't think it was Jay'me's intent but it was a study in circles. Because of that I immediately thought of marbles (maybe it's because I've lost mine!). My son has a gallon bag of hundreds of marbles. I had a great time trying different things...with one exception. My tripod is dead. It will be buried alongside Jay'me's corpse of a camera and I will move on after sharing a few kind words for my 3-legged friend. I will miss her. And my mourning started tonight.

I really needed to brace my camera and because of the death in my camera family, I had to get a little resourceful. So I stacked 7 bean bags atop a box of business cards and a DVD case and nestled my camera among it all. Meanwhile, I piled up 3 more bean bags on top of an overturned Tupperware container so the lens would rest on something. Then, after selecting the marble, I placed it on a sheet of white paper and used my sons new "Buzz Lightyear" flashlight to provide harsh side-lighting. Firing off 3 bracketed shots I set about editing. Here is the result:



Canon 30D
Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro
Mode Aperture Priority
Shutter Speed 1/4, 1", and 2.5"
Aperture f/14.0
ISO 100
Buzz Lightyear Flashlight

It's worth mentioning that I always shoot in RAW. Actually, I always shoot in RAW+sJPEG. What this means is that my camera simultaneously records the image in RAW format and small JPEG format. The purpose is to give me a file size that's easy to preview (sJPEG) and the loss-less format to actually edit and use (RAW). Additionally, it means more time in front of the computer, something I feel is reality in this day and age.

Photographers of old spent loads of time in the darkroom. Today's photographers are often faced with similar demands. In the case of this photo, I had to combine 3 images using Photomatix, process the results, save as a 16-bit TIFF, then proceed to edit the TIFF in Digital Photo Professional (my editor of choice currently), and finally save as a JPEG for the final edit and post. The entire process took about 10 minutes, which I feel is reasonable. But one can imagine the demands of editing wedding photos! Work flow is important!

So I've managed to completely wander away from this post but darn it, it's what I'm feeling right now!

I did my best to capture the circles given me by this marble. It was more challenging than I thought it would be (when is it ever easier!). I shot with HDR in mind because of something I read recently. The poster mentioned that in addition to dealing with dynamic range, HDR can really bring out detail in a setting that you might not normally think of as "perfect for HDR." In this case, I'm not sure I achieved better detail. What I certainly did after much trial and error is better saturation on the blue halo. I couldn't duplicate it with a single exposure. I tried several techniques and just couldn't do it. So once again, HDR was what I needed.

Okay, I've had enough for tonight. I think tomorrow we're inline for a guest photographer. WooHoo!!! We love our guests (no its not because we get out of posting!). It's such fun seeing the work of other people.

I'll leave you with a joke that I'm thinking of as I ramble aimlessly through this post. Here ya go:

How many AD/HD kids does it take to screw in a light bulb?
............
............
............
Wanna ride bikes?

Scott