Wednesday, August 11, 2010


Canon 24-70 2.8L
Shutter Speed 15 seconds
Focal Length 40mm
ISO 400
Natural Light

This photo comes with a great story. Those of you that have met me (or heck, even seen a picture of me) know that I wear glasses. Those of you that know me a little better know that I stubbornly refuse to switch to contacts. There is just something creepy about sticking my fingers in my eyes. I know, I know, you get used to it after awhile and you don't even feel them. I don't care. I'm not sticking my fingers in my eyes.

Which brings me to this photo. At this point in the evening, I was wearing prescription sunglasses. You might ask why I was wearing sunglasses. It clearly is dark enough for regular glasses. Well, let me tell you. I started the evening on a bike path in Lakewood. It wasn't even my destination but I saw some cool lighting and pulled over. I set-up my tripod with remote trigger and was promptly devoured by the worst swarm of mosquitoes I've seen since I was in the boundary waters. I cannot begin to describe the ferocity of these insects. I'm lucky to have gotten away alive.

So, as I'm trying to hang on long enough to get a few shots I swipe at a mosquito that's munching on my right ear. I think I got him but I also hooked my glasses and promptly flung them directly to my left into the grass/woods. Expletives followed as I crawled around WITHOUT glasses trying to find them as the gathering darkness deepened. They must have landed in the epicenter of Mosquito Nation. There were plumes of mosquitoes wafting directly into my face, and I swear I heard a war cry! It wasn't long and I started laughing. After all, you can't write comedy this good. I couldn't stay long owing to the utter futility of it all and the fact that I was rapidly losing blood. So I ran back to my car, put on my prescription sunglasses and drove on over to Ridgefield. I figured my night couldn't get much worse.

Anyway, this photo is something I've always wanted to try - a time lapse of traffic. So when I saw Brandi's photo it fit too well. Like Sere, I hadn't even seen Brandi's post when I took this! Eerie I know. The hardest part was waiting for a car to show up. Ridgefield isn't exactly a thoroughfare, especially at this time of night. But eventually, several cars came along and this is what I got. There is a bit more chrominance noise than I like typically (that's a Canon thing - Nikon usually does better with chrominance but worse with luminance noise) but in this case I think it sort of adds to the mood. Click here for a great explanation of noise (I love this site by the way). Besides, anytime you have an exposure this long you are bound to get higher levels of noise. I played with some noise reduction tools but decided against it. I did sharpen a bit , crop a touch and tried this technique, but again, stuck with my original edit. I hope you like it. And watch out for those mosquitoes!



  1. We must share the same DNA somehow Scott. It's unreal, you are such the male version of me. Stubbornly refusing to put anything in my eyes, vowing vengeance against the birds (read mosquitoes), laughing at yourself whenever possible and hating noisy photos. Seriously, noisy photos are my nemesis. Plus you must have been able to read my mind because had I gone with the elephant or penguin ideas I had you wouldn't have been able to post this.
    The picture is outstanding. I know this intersection quite well, drove through it twice yesterday actually, and waiting for a car must have taken some patience.
    As always, I have learned something from your post. Awesome.

  2. Hey, My old stomping grounds! I have flattened many a penny right there at the old "box". We would sit up there as train past and shook us, then jump down and try to find our flattened bounty. Very nice shot and I'll reread your post to try and absorb a little more... Good stuff. Thank you Scott!

  3. Awesome shot! Love it! Jonny and I both love to play with this traffic and light technique with a slow shutter speed. We always end up with everything having a bit of blur to it because we always forget the tri-pod. I will have to play with this technique. But my roads are even more desolate then yours to try and get some traffic haha. I'm checking out your info sites. So interesting how we are all like on the same wavelength or something :0).

  4. What a great shot Scott! I share the familiarity with this crossing as the other two commenters. As a youngster, I too may be guilty of placing something on these tracks to fall victim to the rumbeling giant. This photo has given it a new look.

    In a broader spectrum, I have to tell all of the contributors to this blog how much I've enjoyed the photos that everyone has shared. Keep it going!
    Scott W.

  5. Great shot. Who knew Scotty is a good photographer, and mosquito food. This story reminds of fishing out your glasses out in Summit county(good times). Enjoying the site, you all are taking great photos. Good job bro.
    Matt Laudick

  6. Thanks everyone for your comments. I knew I'd get a local shout out with this one. Ridgefield is just such a cool little spot!

    And I have an update. I found my glasses! Turns out they flew to my right. Who knew. No wonder I couldn't find them!

  7. Not sure if it keeps track of when and where people post comments on this blog but I wanted to say that I might actually be able to visit your last waterfall pic place in Indiana this year. In October which might have some fall leaves and such on it. I'm going to be near Lafayette Indiana for a wildlife photography seminar and that's only about two hours away. So I might stop and check this place out.

    Scott I will have to get in contact with you to find out some more info.

  8. I actually grew up 2 houses down from "those tracks" and this Photo is nostalgic for me. I'll be digging through old black and whites from my manual camera to share with you when we have our "Guild"