Friday, September 3, 2010

When it Feels Like Life is Passing You By

Canon 30D
Canon EF-S 18-55mm
Shutter Speed 2 Seconds
Aperture f/20.0
Focal Length 18mm
ISO 400
Speed Light and Natural Light
Manual Mode

The genesis of this photo is Brandi's post on her other blog. She wrote about something we all go through from time and time and she did it with the typical grace and personality that only Brandi can show. I was moved by her words for many reasons and I thought about how I might try to duplicate those feelings with a picture. What I came up with is not quite in the spirit of what Brandi was saying but the process began with her post.

The next step was me thinking about ways to improve our experiment and increase the attraction of our little home on the web. My thought was that we need to include people more often. I love photographing a sunset as much as the next guy. But people are fascinating in so many ways. Photographing people is equally fascinating and all four of us could use some practice. After a few hurried emails and texts we decided on a small change. So, with that somewhat disjointed introduction, I present to you the debut of "Friday Faces!" Hence forth, every Friday there will be a face on 3chicks1dude. It can be any face but the rule of connecting somehow to the previous post is still in effect. Who knows, maybe one of you will be on here someday - I certainly hope so!

With my first face picture I decided on a self-portrait. I did this partially because of my feelings on life passing by faster than I can keep up but also because it would tie in to what Brandi posted a few days ago. I can honestly say that my expression sums up perfectly my day on September 3, 2010. It was an exhausting and stressful day and the world indeed felt like it was moving much faster than I. I'm thrilled this turned out because I only looked at the camera 3 times (it was better that way, trust me).

Which brings me to set-up. For this shot, I used a Joby Gorillapod wrapped around the side view mirror. I had my remote trigger hooked up and my speed light in my lap. I had to use manual mode to ensure consistent exposure. Headlights wreck havoc on the camera's meter. Now because my camera is 4 years old (and the model itself is 5 years old) I do not have a built-in remote trigger for my speed light. So I literally had to fire off the flash by hand. Summing up, I was steering with my left knee, pressing the shutter with my left hand and firing the flash with my right hand. To make matters worse, I had to hold the flash about 18 inches from my face to get the exposure right. For that reason, I see a purple dot in the center of my view as I sit here and type this post. Thank God I drive an automatic! BUT, I was wearing my seat belt!

Once I had the exposure tuned, I tooled around downtown Crystal Lake and fired off about 125 shots, sometimes turning, sometimes waiting for a car to go by. Once again, I got lots of looks. People walking by had to be wondering what the flash was that kept flooding my car with light! It was all worth it. This has to be one of my favorite shots I've posted yet. And aside from the fact that I have the world's largest Adam's apple, I don't even mind how I look.

I only had 1 scary moment as I flew down Rakow recklessly watching my camera slowly loosen from it's perch. Tip #1 kids: do NOT exceed 30mph with your camera clinging to plastic made in China and attached to your side view mirror. Just don't do it! I managed to pull over and remove my camera before anything bad happened.

My connection to Jay'me's lovely pictures of the ice are the striations in the cubes. It's something Jay'me herself pointed out to me. I immediately thought of my zzzooooommmm! post and how the time-lapsed lights were similar to the striations. One thing lead to another and next thing I knew I'm driving around wishing I had this lens but making due and getting several shots I liked in spite of my budget woes. For the record, that lens that I want isn't available yet, but if any of you want Christmas ideas for me, this lens will do. All kidding aside, this photo is a perfect example of using your brains and creativity to get a shot. I used the cheapest lens I own for this and yet it was just what I needed.

I'll wrap it up for now but make sure you check us out tomorrow. Brandi is sure to show her flair for photography and I for one can't wait!



  1. This post reads like a good book. I laughed, I cried, I coveted (hello fisheye), I felt anxious, and in the end I was left wanting more.
    Excellent job on our first run of Friday Faces! Now I must get off my butt and make something awesome happen tomorrow and make some changes to the blog so things are more searchable.

  2. You never cease to amaze, Scott! What you will do to get a great shot. I really like the lighting you were able to get on your face and I'm glad you were able to make it through your "near death" experience for your 30D!

  3. p.s. I have a little suggestion that I thought I would throw out there. It might just be me, but sometimes it's kind of hard to figure out which post belongs to who. So maybe you could find a way to put like a little emblem or pic in the line with the date and title or whatever. Just throwing that out there. 'k bye!

  4. p.p.s. maybe you should blur your face out next time. Zang!

  5. ppppppps this one is just for funsies.

  6. @ Justin - pppppppppps - Love you brother.

  7. I have to say that I agree with Justin's comment about it being hard to figure out whos pic is whos. Definately something to think about and figure out. Beyond that great picture as usual Scott. You guys are so creative with what you do with your shots, I love it. I really do need to play around with slow shutter speed and lights.