Last weekend I decided to get up early and see if I could create a cool time lapse video of sunrise over a Salt Lake City Inversion. I got up early and drove to a trailhead above downtown and started hiking. I wasn’t really sure if I could hike high enough to get out of the inversion before the sun came up, but decided to try. I hiked for a awhile while in the dark, cold, and fog, second guessing whether or not this was going to work. Shortly after that I popped out into a beautiful scene just as the sun was starting to come up. I set up my camera and started shooting. This is how it turned out. I love it when you follow your gut and it pays off. Enjoy!
Last week I went up Little Cottonwood Canyon with my friend Shandi and my assistant Stephen to get some new splitboarding and backcountry images for my portfolio. The weather started out pretty socked in with clouds, snow with really bad visibility. We hung out at Snowbird for a bit to see if it would break and it finally did about an hour later. We started hiking up and things kept improving. I wanted to get a few hiking shots and a nice editorial style portrait of her. I also wanted to test out the new HSS (High Speed Sync) feature of the Profoto B1 Airs. We got a few solid hiking shots then found a good spot for a portrait. It was great conditions for testing the capabilities of the light in harsh conditions. I ended up shooting some of the portrait shots syncing at 3200/sec at f/2 and it worked great! It was crazy. In the past that was never possible but with the new HSS feature on B1’s we can shoot at any shutter speed which is incredible. Sorry for the camera tech but it really is kind of a game changer for the photo world. Then to top it all off there was an epic sunset right when we finished. Good day in the mountains. Here are a few of my favorite shots.
Happy New Year! I love the holidays but it’s always nice to get back to work and start a new year. Last week I came down with a pretty nasty cold and by the end of the week was feeling pretty stir crazy from lounging around trying to get better and need to get out and shoot something. I thought it would be nice to get a cool shot of Mt. Olympus at night so at 9pm set out to see what I could find. I drove for a bit to try and find a spot that I could get up on the foothills around Parleys Canyon. I figured that would be a good area to find a nice shot. I parked, put on some gaiters and headed up the mountain. I ended up finding a trail that met up the Bonneville Shoreline Trail and found a good spot that would work to get the shot.
I love shooting at night. When I was in college I shot a lot of my assignments and projects at night. I think I like shooting landscapes and cityscapes at night at night because it is a nice change from my normal assignments from work. Here are a few tips for getting shots at night.
-Invest in a nice lightweight carbon tripod with a solid ball head. They are more expensive that aluminum tripods but when you are hiking around they are the way to go. Still stable but much lighter. I prefer ball heads they give you lots of options while shooting.
-Use a shutter release cable. I use my intervalometer. It has a shutter release built into it as most do. On almost DSLR cameras there is a max shutter of 30 sec. if you need to shoot longer than that you must put your camera on Bulb and use a shutter release cable to control the length of time the shutter is open.
-Use a sand bag or some rocks to hang on the bottom of the tripod. Adding some additional weight will keep you camera stable. The last thing you want is for your camera to move while getting your shot
-Use a lower ISO. You will have a tenancy to want to increase your ISO do decrease your exposure time but this will create more noise in your shot.
-Plan on taking some time. Night shots take much more time to take than shooting during the day. Depending on the available light for your shot, it will take at least 3-5 min per shot and sometimes longer. That is just for the exposure. After your camera is done taking the shot, it takes about the same amount of time to render longer exposure noise reduction to the image. When I went out last week for this shot I ended up taking 8-10 shots and it took me an hour and half by the time and drove, hiked, found a spot, shot and came back down. That’s pretty fast I thought.
-Dress warm, especially this time of year. With a little wind and the cold on top of the fact that once you start shooting your not moving around much. Remember to dress in lots of layers.
Shooting at night is a lot of trial and error. A light meter isn’t much help in these situations. Finding the right focus and be tricky and being mindful of how motion will play into your shot are all challenges of getting the right exposure and shot while shooting at night. I love it and think it is really fun to and experiment with.
The image above is the shot I got last weekend. I’m pretty happy with it. Thanks for checking it out! I shot it at f/11 for about a min. and a half with an ISO of 100. Happy shooting!
The last few weeks have been busy. Summer is always the busiest time of year for me and I love it. Work is going well, the weather is always great, BBQ’s, camping and hiking. It’s why I love living in Utah.
On a personal note, I’ve been moving my family into a new house and it was kind of stressful. We had to move out of our old house at the end of last month and couldn’t get into our new house until last week. That said, we got moved in last week and its nice to be settling in.
During my house hiatus, my wife and kids went out of town so I went to the mountains. I hiked up to Lake Blanche in Big Cottonwood Canyon to get some new shots and spend the night. I was hoping to get some cool night shots of the lake and try and shoot a cool night lapse of the stars but when I got up there the moon was half out and blew out the sky to much to get good shots of the stars. I did get a couple of cool shots. Here is a couple of my favorites.
Since I couldn’t get the stars very well and there weren’t any clouds I decided it would have been a pretty boring time lapse shot so I didn’t do one at night. I did try one in the morning with the sun coming up but too wasn’t very cool. That’s how you figure out what works and what doesn’t however. Night shots turned out nice though so it was fun.
The last few weeks I had a couple of cool editorial jobs come through. I did a shoot for Good Housekeeping Magazine and another job for AARP Mag. I ended up shooting both of them with the latest Hasselblad camera with a 40mp back. Whenever possible I’ve tried to incorporate some nice medium format work into my clients/portfolio. It has been fun. I had issues with it the first go around shooting tethered with the camera. We were getting lots of errors but the rental house updated everything and we changed a few settings so for the AARP shoot everything was smooth. As soon as the photos run I will post them here. Needless to say the detail you can get out the Hasselblad is pretty amazing.
Last week we shot a new Ad campaign for SelectHeatlh which went well and we are doing pre production on a new fitness and lifestyle shoot for another client for the first part of July. It will be three days of shooting and should be a great shoot.
That’s the update for now. Thanks for following, now get outside and do something fun!