Thursday, May 22, 2014

Action Cam

Over Folsom Lake in the golden hour
 Your adventure is not an adventure anymore unless you chronicle it with photos or video. Today's cameras and social media give us instant results to seeing and sharing our favorite spots and shots. Here are some tips to make your sure your biking, hiking, paddling and day-at-the-beach pictures shine on the social media pages.

Golden Hour
 Time of day makes a difference in capturing photos. The first or last hours of sunlight can produce  quality results for picture taking. Photographers refer to it as the "Golden Hour". Those early morning sunrises or evening sunsets provide wonderful light to create a mood for dazzle. What do photographers call the mid-day light of harsh shadows? Lunch time.

Available Light 
 Good lighting always makes good pictures. Front lit, with the sun behind the photographer, usually tends to make blue skies and scenic colors, but also can lead to harsh light on faces. Shooting into the sun, will cause the subject to be in the shadows against a bright background. A remedy, use your flash to fill in the shadows.
Paddling and pictures with the sun to your back.

Framing 
 Back in my newspaper photography days,  people would look at my camera gear and say, "That camera must take some good pictures."
 The camera was a good one but the real trick is composing the photo and seeing the picture before you press the button. I look for simple images and clutter free backgrounds. Ansel Adams said it simple, "A good photograph is knowing where to stand."


Stay tight
 Fill the frame with the action. War photographer Bob Capa said "If your pictures aren't good enough, then your not close enough." A good action photo, will draws us into the the intensity of the sport. The closer you are to the action, the closer the viewer will be too. Hopefully you are only one shooting.


Right on top of the action on the Wolf River.

Panoramic Vistas
 You wouldn't think about going to Lake Superior, Yosemite or the Grand Canyon without bringing back a photo. Stay away from the traditional and create your own unique perspective.
"One reason that I love photography," wrote Minnesota photographer Bryan Hansel, " Is that it combines many different engaging elements, including some of my favorite aspects of life: curiosity, creativity, math, science and imagination."
 Something to think about while searching out your big picture.




Paddling across Lake Superior. this time the place is the star.

Waterproof & Floaty
 If you are into water sports you might look into a waterproof camera. There are many out there on the market with technology and durability in mind.  Attach a float strap to keep your camera from sinking if it gets away from you. I watched helplessly one summer day as my camera slipped out my hand, bounced on the bow of the kayak and into the Red River.  It is small investment to keep your camera from plunging to the bottom of lake or river.

Making a video on the Otter Tail River.

GoPro Video Tips
 You have all seen those static shots on Y-Tube. The camera is locked down with one long segment,   making thrilling video dull when it runs to long. When I'm working on my kayak videos I place the camera all around my boat to get different angles. For other shots, I  position the camera on rock to get video of my kayak paddling through the frame. GoPro has plenty of cool attachments to mount the camera anywhere.