Saturday, May 25, 2013

pure photo workshop #3: motion

click for larger view
The workshop assignment over at Pure Photo this week 
was presented by our workshop coordinator, Jane. The assignment had two parts: 
First, to study motion by varying your shutter speed. And the second part was to study water in relationship to motion. Sadly, I ran out of time, energy, and light for the latter part of the assignment, but I do have a water photo from my trip to Baltimore to share at the end.


I had many, many ideas for the motion part of the workshop. As time was rapidly flying by and the rains were not ceasing, I went to the waterfront, settled down on a bench with my raincoat, tripod and camera, and watched...and clicked...and clicked...away.

I had a blast the likes of which I can't even put into words.
I went through three memory cards. Yep. THREE!

Boy did I learn alot. I loved this assignment! I don't usually hang out at the waterfront, and never with my camera. To sit and look at people going by, AND boldly take their picture...hoo boy!
That was a moment in itself! ;)

The first thing I learned, is that people don't walk/jog/bike in a straight path, 
hence it is very difficult to get sharp focus,
since I had chosen to remain stationary and catch what passed in front of me.
Using a larger f-stop (smaller aperture) helps, but depending on the light (which is ever-changing in the Pacific Northwest), you have to balance your shutter speed with your ISO to stop action
(or record action) depending on your creative desire.

In daylight with a low ISO setting, it is difficult to achieve a slow shutter speed even at larger f-stops.
Luckily, I have neutral density filters in my arsenal...I used 2 8X ND filters plus a graduated ND filter
to block sky light during this photoshoot and to help me find balance 
between shutter speed, aperture, ISO, and the creative desire.

The first shot is a collection of mostly low shutter speed shots to capture the subject's action. The subject is in motion and the surrounding background and foreground should be in still.
The black and white image is a panned shot that stopped the motion of the biker, 
but not the runner crossing in front. Too cool.

Another thing I learned, is that the shutter speed that works on a cyclist to capture their motion is not the same shutter speed needed to capture a jogger or walker. Yep.
It took awhile to change my parameters fast enough between all the walkers,
bikers, and cyclists to get the shot and not just an empty frame. 
And another thing, some of these cyclists are racing down the path, 
and others are pedaling leisurely...another thing to consider. 

Onward.
The second shot is a composite of a man in a business suit walking in front of me. He stood out from the crowd, and was the only businessman I saw. In this series of shots I had chosen
to freeze the action and take multiple frames of the man walking.
I just had to process him in black and white!

My favorite method: panning. Loved. It. 
In this method the photographer focuses on the subject and moves along with the subject so that the subject stays in focus and the background/foreground is blurred, thereby depicting the motion.
I had to readjust my shutter speed to capture the motion in the panned background, then focus on the subject and pan...being careful not to pan up and down, too! Hah!

click for larger view
I love the girl above...she is so Portland!


So many kinds of bikes...so many people to watch.

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This runner was fantastic! I didn't even realize I had caught his smile. I think the panning wasn't pristine, but it's ok...it definitely captures the motion of a runner.


This biker was a seasoned pro. He was weaving in and out and all around the walkers.
Nothing fazed him.

Below is a water shot taken at the harbor in Baltimore, MD. 
It was just around or after sunset. I used a low ISO, large f-stop, and a long exposure to blur the water.

Thank you Jane for a grand assignment! I'm looking forward to seeing how the other participants approached both parts. I hope you'll join me in perusing their work!

Have a fabulous rest of your weekend!! xo


Time has been transformed, and we have changed;
it has advanced and set us in motion;
it has unveiled its face, 
inspiring us with bewilderment and exhilaration.
~Kahlil Gibran  


7 comments:

Jane said...

Oh Gail wow what an beautiful adventure. Those panning shots are just amazing. I was to chicken to try it but now I want to use panning too. The weaving biker photo <3. Love that photo of that businessman too, so creative. You inspire me so much, thanks for that.

Maaike Dorrius said...

Wow, what a beautiful pictures did you make! Especially the one with the panning technique. The picture of the water by night I like the most. The starts of the lights are almost unreal. How did you make this one? Greetings, Maaike.

Lot de Wit said...

Your pictures are so beautiful! It looks like you have been really experimenting with your camera. I don't know which one I like most, they are all so nice! Maybe the kids with the bikes. The boy with that beautiful green color, and the sun shining on him! And the girl is so special!

Jane said...

J ade says: love the movement in your photos. And the lights in the water photo are so pretty.

Puur Arnika said...

What a wonderfull pictures! The same men in one picture walking is my favourite

Patricia said...

Wow Gail,
your pictures amazing!
You inspire me to try more!
I've tried panning with a horse, but the back- and foreground were not blurred. I love the picture with the bussinessman!
What a great adventure!

Annette said...

Wow beautiful Gail. What a special picture with the mountainbike and the jogger!

I love the pic with the girl on the bike. The pic with under armour is also great!