Friday, July 26, 2013


Assignment #11: Find some symmetry and capture it.

Left-right symmetry is the easiest to find, but don't forget about up-down and rotational symmetry.

Rack 'Em Up
Indianapolis Art Center, Indianapolis, Indiana

ACI markings, Colorado Railroad Museum, Golden, Colorado

Stone Arches
Spring Mill State Park, near Mitchell, Indiana

Friday, July 19, 2013

Candid Portrait (Friends and Family)

Assignment #10: Take an unposed portrait of someone you know.

Whether formal or informal, posed portraiture seems like a photographic niche that's about as far from recreational photography as you can get. Proper lighting equipment seems almost mandatory as does portrait-specific knowledge and experience. Additionally, unless you're shooting someone who is either unbelievably stunning or ridiculously cute, the photos are probably of little interest to those who don't know the subject.

That said, I'm a huge fan of photos with people in them, as the subject or otherwise.

So this assignment is to take a photo of a person. To make it easy, make it someone you know. As long as you never ever try to embarrass anyone or share unflattering pictures, your camera should continue to be welcome at gatherings of family and friends.

Little Boy / Blue

Christmas Belle


Friday, July 12, 2013

Star Trails

Assignment #9: Create an image with star trails.

Are these shots a little gimmicky? Maybe, but they sure get a reaction when you share them, from photogs and non-photogs alike.

I suppose you could make one of these with a single very long exposure, but today, there's simply no need to run the risk of a single wayward headlight ruining an hour's work. It's so much easier to "stack" multiple exposures, a procedure that gives you various editing opportunities. You'll need an intervalometer (found on many DSLRs or available for purchase) and appropriate stacking software. I'm on Windows so I tried startrails.exe for the shots below. It's donationware so give it a try and send the guy a little money when you get something you like.

Turkey Run Star Trails
Looking north in Turkey Run State Park, near Marshall, Indiana

Miami Sky Lines
Looking straight up (no tripod - camera on its back on a picnic table) in Miami State Recreation Area, Miami and Wabash Counties, Indiana

Friday, July 5, 2013

Shadows and Highlights

Assignment #8:  Take a photo in which the shadows and highlights either are the subject or are absolutely vital to creating interest.

I sometimes think this is one the least-specific assignments on my list but it's something I need to learn to look for.

National Museum of the United States Air Force, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Dayton, Ohio

Shadow Grass
San Diego Zoo, San Diego, California