Monday, February 28, 2011

Focus, Focus, Focus

So I had a moment to breath today for the first time in awhile, and one of DPS's posts couldn't have been more timely. It was about using focal points more effectively in photography. This is definitely an area I feel like my photog skills could use some drastic help in. Here are a few of the tips and also a few examples of my lack luster photos in need of some focal point practice.
Tips for using focal points more effectinvely:

    Position: use rule of thirds, or look to place your camera in a prominent place to capture the best focal point you're trying to convey.

    Focus: Learn to use Depth of Field to blur out other aspects in front of or behind your focal point.

    Blur: If you want to get tricky you can play with slower shutter speeds to blur surrounding objects. This works well if your object or its background isn't moving.

    Size: Making your focal point larger is not the only way to make it more promiment, but it certainly helps.

    Color: Using contrasting colors can also be a way of setting your interest point apart from its surroundings

    Shape: Similary contrasting shapes and textures can make your object standout, especially patterns that are repeated around an object.

Here are a few examples. I have gotten a teeny tiny better at making focal point a priority in my photos, as I hope you can tell from these horrible, not so good and maybe a tiny bit better examples.

Eek this one could us some major help in focusing on those delish turtle bites.

While the flowers may look a little droopy and sad,

the focus of the pic still draws you into them and the table setting in general.

This is a photo where I purposely focused on the pumpkin

on the right to capture the scaley and textured details.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Time Lapse Photography

Thought I'd share this inspiring time lapse video of NYC I recently came across. For those of you who don't know what time lapse is (and don't kid yourself, I kind of had to Google it too to refresh my memory), it's essentially when you shoot images continuously at a specified interval and then make a movie out of it. It is a VERY time consuming process. With that said, I hope it gives you a deep appreciate for the video below. ONE DAY, I hope to have the patience, talent and knowledge (and time!) to create something as fantastic as this....i.e. probably a long, long time from now!!

Monday, January 31, 2011

HELLO 2011!

Well hello 2011....where in the world did 2010 go? This girl has been BAD, BAD, BAD about posting - shame on me! Just wanted to let everyone know I'm still alive! I still have a few 2010 photos updates to post - a few pics from a fabulous wedding we went to in Napa and some holiday pics with the fam. Also, closing the loop on a few 2010 goals that may or may never have been achieved. Woopsy! 2011 is the year to improve my as it always starts out right? :)

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Oh Christmas Card....

I contemplated maybe not doing a holiday card this year for pure lack of creativity. I didn't have a cute pic of Ryan and I, we don't have precious children that make holiday cards sparkle with cuteness no matter what they're doing in the photo, among many other lame excuses.

I decided though to embark on a little holiday card photo shoot adventure with our dearly beloved yellow labrador, Mr. Wyatt. While he was wiggling and avoiding me just enough to not be able to capture the perfect shot, toward the end I have to admit I think he was enjoying it. The amusement with mommy snapping the camera at him though wasn't enough to get him to look at me and make a cute "holiday card material" face.

Yesterday I was disappointedly browsing through the photo shoot pics and decided to play around with one in Photoshop. After several hours of tweaking and editing, I accidentally stumbled upon a final product that I have to admit I was kind of excited about. I hestitantly showed ryan, because I knew if he didn't like it, it might diminish my chances for a 2010 holiday card. O.k. I exaggerate a bit...let's be real here, guys don't really have a say in these matters! :) Anyways, he was kind of impressed and agreed we could order them. Woohoo!! Below is the final product. This was all by pure chance and luck that I was even able to come to this somewhat acceptable rendition of our 2010 holiday card. I'll post instructions on my post-processing steps soon. It may take me awhile to remember exactly what I did. :)



Others from the photo shoot - hehe I love all of his holiday outfit changes :)

Seriously mom, get the camera away from...

DPS Weekly Assignment - Repititions and Patterns

So as some of you may remember from older posts, one of my fave photography resources is Digital Photography School. They send out a daily newsletter with info on products, post proscessing (editing), various photographing tips on tons of different subject matters, etc. They have a weekly assignment and I ALWAYS say I'm going to do it for practice. AND, of course, I never do. This week though the subject is "Repitition and Patterns" and I had a photo I took over the weekend that I thought would be fun to post to the weekly assignments forum. Not to be confused with any sort of contest, because this gal's photos are not ready for anything along those lines. But it's fun just to post pics, view other posts and maybe even get some feedback and tips on my photos.

Sooo...FINALLY, I submitted a pic. It was a crisp fall Thanksgiving Day when I took this so it gives me a fun fuzzy reminder that fall is in the air. Which is my absolute favorite time of year. You can check out comments and other posts for the DPS Weekly Assignment at:

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Baptismal Affair

Hooray for double blog posts for the Meserve family! I had the priviledge of attending AND being their psuedo "photographer" for darling Carter Meserve's Baptism over the weekend. A huge thank you to Kaylen for letting me capture such a sweet moment in their precious baby boy's life, and practice my photography skills all at the same time.

I rented a lens for the baptism and was thoroughly impressed, not necessarily with my photos, but with the ease of the lens, the local shop I rented is from and the lens they picked out for me. I'll add a post soon on all the lens deets soon. In the meantime, here are some pictures of the precious Meserve family!

The Meserve Fam

The Baptism Ceremony

Annie helps out during the ceremony

Godparents, Ryan Parker and Annie Salem (of The Now Stylebook) and The Meserves

The Meserves with Monsignor Zimmerman

The Meserves and McCurrys

Kaylen and Annie and an I'm over this Carter :)

Thursday, November 25, 2010

It's a Boy!

Who doesn't love a fabulous baby shower with decadent treats (homemade cupcakes at that!), ohhhs and ahhhs over super precious baby gear and gadgets and lots of fun girlie chatter? I sure do! Here are some pics from my friend Kaylen's baby shower. Congrats to all of the fabulous hostesses who helped throw Baby Carter a shower prior to his arrival.

Most fabulous mantle ever - I love the understated and chic decor the girls put together

The hostesses with Kaylen and the amazing Tiffany's present they got for
Baby Carter.

The theme of the shower was Tiffany's and was tied in
by the adorable gift and teal hanging paper bouquets

Kaylen with Hostesses Annie and Katy

Bebo and Amy

Amy and Kaylen's Sweet Grandmother