Posts Tagged ‘photography’

100 Strangers

Monday, March 14th, 2011

I don’t generally post purely photography stuff on this site, but I’m making an exception to tell you I’m starting a 100 Strangers project. Why the exception? Well, lets first talk about the project. The concept is fairly simple – take 100 portraits of people who A) are a complete stranger and B) have been told about the project and given consent. That’s it, those are the only rules. Seems easy, right? I agree the concept is not complicated, the difficulty comes in approaching people you’ve never met and asking permission to not only take a picture, but to take a portrait. Few people are comfortable talking to strangers and even fewer are okay with doing something as intimate as taking a portrait. I belong to that group (unless I’ve been drinking) and as such, this challenge is not only going to stretch me as a photographer, but also as a person. Soooo… yeah… that’s why this is posted here.

I consider the formal start date March 1st and set a personal goal of finishing by December 31st. This gives me 10 months to get 100 pictures, an average of 2-3 per week. This wouldn’t be that hard if I went with the law of averages and just asked every random person I met. The problem is I’m not only dealing with my own self-consciousness, I’m also dealing with finding my method. I want everyone I approach to be for a specific reason and you have to do so in a manner in which isn’t off-putting or creepy. To take a true portrait, you have to make people feel comfortable and as such, you have to spend a decent amount of time observing to find those who seem open to it. Really it’s about learning your subjects and turning what you learn into a great photo (all while stepping outside your comfort zone). I could list a bunch of reasons why I’m doing this, but the last sentence is the largest and most important.

Included below is the first and only picture I’ve taken for the project. I know I’m already behind the curve; I’m taking comfort in the fact that not only is the first is the hardest, but that it should get easier as time goes along. I will likely post very few images from the project here, so be sure to check out my Flickr stream or the project page on DirtyMartiniPhoto.com for on-going updates.

Wildlife Photo Contest

Saturday, May 8th, 2010
May 25th Edit: I was awarded a 16″x20″ canvas (or $103 off) for second place! Woohoo!! Thanks to those who voted.

I entered one.  I submitted a picture I took July 2008 in Santa Cruz, which seems like a lifetime ago. It happens to be one I’m partial to and since it fit the theme, I’m giving it a shot. This is really the first time I’ve done something like this with my pictures, so hopefully I don’t come in last place. Please consider voting for me now and every day until the contest closes. I would very much appreciate it.

Canon PowerShot SX200IS

Tuesday, July 21st, 2009

Finding myself with a bit of bonus money, I recently purchased a new point and shoot camera. My old one is outdated (~6 years) and I don’t always want to whip out my dSLR, so I figured it was time. After doing some research, I opted for the recently released Canon PowerShot SX200IS. Although a bit more than I wanted to spend, it seemed to be the right option for me given its various offerings. I’ll probably post a review after I use it for awhile; in the meantime, here are the reasons I picked it over some of the smaller models.

  • Canon. It’s no secret I prefer Nikon for SLR, so this might come as a contradiction. Having done enough research to recommend cameras for others and actually using a bunch of Canon P&S myself, I can comfortable say they make the best ones.
  • Zoom. What can I say, I’m a zoom snob. I feel incredibly restricted by 3x and even 5x is a bit short for my taste (I use an 18-200mm [11x] on my dSLR ) so I was immediately attracted to the 12x (28-336mm) this model offers. The camera is not a “super-compact” as a result of all that glass, but with a 3″ LCD to make up for it, I’m okay with that.
  • HD Video. I’ve really gotten into the whole making thing and had been thinking about upgrading my dSLR to compensate. With a pocket camera that shoots 720p, video is no longer a requirement when I do eventually upgrade.
  • Modes. Again, it might be the photography snob in me but I don’t think I ever want a camera that doesn’t have aperature and shutter priority modes. My 6 y/o P&S was originally purchased because it has them (and I wanted to learn about them) so anything without would be a downgrade.
  • Random Goodies. Blink detection, face detection self-timer, red-eye correction, face tracking and pop-up flash… I’ll let you figure out what all those things do/mean.

I’d also like this post to serve as the unofficial release of the blog on DirtyMartiniPhoto.com. I don’t know if I’m going to separate content or just double post here and there in the future, but I figured you’d love yet another RSS feed of mine to follow.