I had the privilege of photographing some of the first moments in baby C's life this past week at her newborn session, and her parents couldn't help but beam with joy at the life they made together.
I loved catching her wakeful gazing moments,
and her blissful peaceful moments like this,
Congratulations to the M Family for giving birth to your first baby...a girl.
New slideshow for the welcoming page. Check!
Put up a number of galleries for your viewing pleasure. Check!
Change coding for a better, more seemless look to the welcoming page. Check!
Figure out what is wrong with that Facebook Like button and fix it once and for all! Check!
Set up a subscribe page to be first in line to know about the latest deals, giveaways, and more! Check!
Set up a Referral system where clients can receive gifts for getting their friends and family to book sessions with me! Check!
There's a whole lot of changes that have taken place here at Angela Ferguson Photography, so if you like what you see, please click the Facebook Like button found at the bottom of every page as well as in the right column under the picture of me.
Most people find watching fireworks enjoyable. We join hordes of crowds to see them but trying to photograph them while carrying around and attempting to use a tripod, gorilla pod or monopod becomes more than problematic.
Lets say people are actually observing and respecting a bit of personal space. The normal thing to do in those situations is to have lawn chairs or a blanket to sit on and relax a little. Now lets say that you pull out that tall aluminum tripod. The people behind you are no longer your friends. So you try the gorillapod, except now there's a couple in chairs in front of you and they are completely blocking your shot. Should you ask them if you can gorillapod the top of their chair or one of their shoulders? You get the point. How about that tree over there? It has some nice branches you could affix the gorilla pod to, but alas, the leaves are covering up the fireworks.
Now lets say that everyone is standing next to you and you're feeling bit by bit that personal space is not observed in this situation. If you are lucky enough to be in front of everyone else and have a barricade that's heavy enough that you can affix your gorillapod to without getting lots of vibrations from the barricade, you are one heck of a lucky and envied person. Most likely, you're behind bunches of people and you're just hoping to get a shot in between a sea of heads. Using a string monopod is pretty much a near death experience for your camera when people are jostling you about; the last thing you want is to encourage your camera downward as you lose your balance. If you have a tall tripod, you can try leaving down just one leg and hope to get a good angle without tripping those around you. If you don't have a tripod with you or can't get a good angle from your tripod, right now you and your camera are in a battle against the crowd and the odds are not in your favor. This was the circumstance I was in when I took this shot after the Magic Kingdom's Lights Spectacular Parade.
Here's how you can tripod your camera using your body: With your secondary hand, firmly hold with your whole hand your camera lens and push that same arm into your side or across your chest. If you have a large sturdy object you can lean against, go for it. Remember proper breathing technique while shooting, especially at the slow shutter speeds you'll be shooting at because it will serve you well. You should keep your legs slightly bent and in line with your hips to help keep your balance and remain vertical amidst the jostling and hope for the sea of heads to separate at some point so you can get a good shot.
Now we're moving on to settings. Start out in Manual mode on a medium aperture and using ISO 400 which will allow the fireworks to retain their colors. Using these settings, you're also getting a slow enough shutter speed to capture the fireworks appearing more robust. You may even be surprised at how "fast" your slow shutter speed is! Meter on one of the fireworks to get your shutter speed, then you'll be ready for the perfect shot.
In continuing with Visualizing the Outcome, Part 1, Here's a couple more pictures of Cinderella's Castle the way most people have come to know it but there's still more that can be done to cater your work to your audience. The first step before doing any post production is to keep your audinece in mind. Who is your audience? Where will your work be displayed?
This is the happy Cinderella's Castle that feels welcoming and warm and filled with all things sweet inside, including Cinderella, herself. Notice the candyland colors through out the picture are bright and child-like.
Don't forget about the other potential audiences you may have left out. A lot of people like Disney World. After all, Disney Themeparks are the places to go to where both infants and grandparents can ride almost all of the rides together!
Maybe something a little more for the grown ups? How about a regal Cinderella's Castle?
By practicing thinking about the hints in part I, you will start to be able to plan for and make any picture a work of art that says much more than a snapshot. Great pictures don't have to be accidental.
When I take a picture, I see it as an opportunity to make art. What mood am I trying to convey? What drew me into taking this shot? How can I make this picture say more? Colors, composition, emotion, and lighting are all important parts of making a picture a work of art and should be considered both before and after you take a picture. What I mean is that there are decisions you can choose to make your pictures even better before you take your picture and in post-production.
Above is a picture I took at Disney's Magic Kingdom. In my head, knew I wanted it to be dark and mystical and had anticipated when and how I would take the picture. I could see it in my mind and loved the dark feel I knew I could get by taking this picture and then in post-production, I could manipulate the picture so that the end result would be what I had first envisioned and knew I could create before I ever took the picture.
It seems as if Cinderella's Castle is being house sat and redecorated by the evil Maleficent from Sleeping Beauty or maybe Cinderella's Castle by night turns into a fortress more fierce, protected, and not to be messed with! That's one street-smart princess! Mmm-hmm!
The next time you take out your camera of choice, stop, take a breath, and think about how you can make the picture you're about to take something even better.