Low End DSLR: digital photography on a budget

March 19, 2008

Toothbrushing Illustration How-to

I recently published a life-hacker style post about my toothbrushing routine on another blog. I decided it would help to have an illustration, and figured, I’m a photographer, I should be able to provide just what I need.

I visualized what I wanted in my mind, and then thought about how to achieve that image. I decided a shot of me, toothbrush in hand, mouth full of toothpaste, grimacing into the bathroom mirror would be just the shot.

But mirrors are notoriously reflective, making it very difficult to get shot of one without also seeing the camera, off camera flashes, etc. And bathrooms tend to be lacking in spaciousness. Not to mention that the shot I was visualizing shows me face on, looking directly into the mirror, something like the picture below:

me, brushing my teeth in the mirror

Continue reading “Toothbrushing Illustration How-to”

Posted by Mark in: Canon | Equipment | Flash | Lenses | Photos | Photoshop | Tips-n-Tricks | Tutorials | Comments (1)

August 12, 2006

Arizona Poppies

Arizona Poppies

A close up of the yellow flowers from the previous entry. We typically get wildflowers in the spring in the desert. The beauty of the display depends upon how much winter rain we receive. The rains this summer have brought out a beautiful display of these Arizona Poppies. You can even see them covering the side of mountains with their brilliant yellow petals.

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos

August 11, 2006

Trail Head

inviting trail head

This trail head is made more inviting by the green plants and yellow flowers along its border. It leads to a stream that you’d think would be cool and refreshing, but instead is warm and a bit muddy. The warmth comes from the desert heat, the mud because when it rains the stream becomes a muddy torrent that closes the road into/out of the park.

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos

August 10, 2006

The Green Desert

green mountains in arizona

We’ve continued to receive rain since the flooding, and the desert has transformed from brown to green—so much so that you can see the green on the mountains. This is Catalina State Park, north of Tucson, which has received almost twice the amount of rain as it normally does by this time of year. Note the gray clouds ready to drop more rain on the mountains.

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos

August 09, 2006

Cartwheeling

crazy cartwheeling stunt plane

The Geico stunt plane pilot tumbled his plane through the sky for much of his show. He must have had quite a headache from pulling all those Gs - both positive and negative.

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos

August 04, 2006

T-birds

Thunderbirds, flying in a stacked formation

The Air Force Thunderbirds from an airshow in Tucson last spring.

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos

August 03, 2006

Flood, part 3

Pantano wash like liquid chocolate

Like liquid chocolate.

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos

August 02, 2006

Flood, part 2

Pantano wash at sunset

Pantano Wash at Sunset.

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos

August 01, 2006

Flood, part 1

Pantano wash runnning bank to bank

In October of 1983 Tucson had several days of rainfall. The washes and normally dry rivers filled beyond flood stages, damaging bridges and several homes and apartment complexes. 10 years later we had a similar event, and even more damage in monetary terms. This past weekend we had a large amount of rain dropped on the nearby mountain ranges, which drained into these washes and rivers. Due to structural improvements on the banks and to bridges, we had less damage, even though the amount of water that came through was greater than either of the previous flood events.

The image above shows one of the washes flowing bank to bank, looking north to the Catalina Mountains.

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos

July 18, 2006

Steps

Gray steps

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos

July 17, 2006

July 14, 2006

July 13, 2006

Swinging

Young girl swinging with blue sky and clouds in the background

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos

July 12, 2006

July 11, 2006

Sabino Canyon Cactus

A variety of cactus in Sabino Canyon

1/800, f3.6, 18mm, iso 100

This image is a bit soft - should have stopped down and decreased the shutter speed - and I cropped the prickly pear in the foreground too close, but I still like how it turned out.

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos

July 07, 2006

Sabino Canyon Nursery Tree

A mesquite tree acting as “nurse” to 6 saguaro cactus

1/160, f8, 21mm, iso 100

It is not uncommon to see a relatively young (no arms yet) saguaro cactus growing right next to a Palo Verde or Mesquite tree in the Sonoran Desert. These trees are called nurse trees because they provide shelter to the slow growing saguaro as it matures. A healthy saquaro can live to be 150 years or more, outliving its nurse, which is why you don’t see this relationship with larger saguaros.

This nurse tree, a Mesquite, seems to be running a nursery with 6 saguaro cactus under her branches.

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos

July 06, 2006

Sabino Canyon Saguaro Forest

A forest of saguaro cactus in Sabino Canyon

1/80, f6.4, 18mm, iso 100

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos

July 05, 2006

Sabino Canyon Clouds

Clouds over Sabino Canyon

1/125, f9, 18mm, iso 100

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos

July 04, 2006

Sabino Canyon Sunset

A number of saguaro cactus silhouetted by a pink sunset

This image was taken on New Year’s Day, 2006. We had a great hike, and cool weather - but not at all cold. The sunset was spectacular, and I had a fun time capturing it.

1/125, f4.9, 80mm, iso 400

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Canon | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos

July 03, 2006

Sabino Canyon in Black and White

A black and white picture of mountains, clouds and cactus

This conversion was done in iPhoto using the Adjust HUD to control saturation and add a slight blue tint by changing the white balance temperature.

1/200, f/2.8, 54mm, iso 100

Continue reading “Sabino Canyon in Black and White”

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Canon | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos | iPhoto

March 14, 2006

A Digital Photographer's Worst Nightmare

If you are shooting film, you have to protect that film. You make sure it is completely rewound before removing it from the camera. You worry about sending it through the X-ray machine at the airport. You dread someone opening the door of the darkroom while you are developing, and you pray that you don’t have the “new guy” processing your precious prints at the lab.

As a digital photographer I am blissfully unconcerned about those issues. But I have my own fears to face. Hard drive failure and no back-ups (note to self, make sure my back-ups are up to date), losing a CF card, or having a CF card go south.

That last one hit me last night.

Continue reading “A Digital Photographer's Worst Nightmare”

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Canon | Digital Rebel/XT | Photos | Software | Comments (14)

March 10, 2006

One Third - Photo a day number 10


One Third - Photo a day number 10
Originally uploaded by gnuhaus.

Playing off the idea of being one third done with the 30 day photo challenge and the “rule of thirds.”

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Canon | Digital Rebel/XT | Photo a Day Challenge | Photos | Comments (0)

March 09, 2006

Crate - Photo a day number 9


Crate - Photo a day number 9
Originally uploaded by gnuhaus.

I like this one for a number of reasons - the lines, the texture, the light, the juxtaposition of the organic lines with the geometric lines, the color.

But I am biased since I took the photo. What do you think?

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Canon | Digital Rebel/XT | Photo a Day Challenge | Photos | Comments (2)

March 08, 2006

Street light - Photo a day number 8


Street light - Photo a day number 8
Originally uploaded by gnuhaus.

I used the flash to “control” the shutter speed and get just the light from the street light instead of blowing that light out and seeing the rest of the parking lot.

Posted by Mark in: Flash | Photo a Day Challenge | Photos

March 07, 2006

U of A from Above - Photo a day number 7


U of A from Above Photo a day number 7
Originally uploaded by gnuhaus.

Taken out the 8th floor window of the Education building on the U of A campus.

Posted by Mark in: Photo a Day Challenge | Photos | Comments (1)

March 06, 2006

March 05, 2006

String of lights - Photo a day number 5


String of lights - Photo a day number 5
Originally uploaded by gnuhaus.

A string of lights in the courtyard of the Tucson Museum of Art.

Posted by Mark in: 300d/350d | Digital Rebel/XT | Photo a Day Challenge | Photos

March 04, 2006

New toy - Photo a Day number 4


New toy - Photo a Day number 4
Originally uploaded by gnuhaus.

9 rack dehydrator with temperature control - already at work making granola and other treats!

Posted by Mark in: Photo a Day Challenge | Photos

March 03, 2006

Morning Commute - Photo a Day number 3


Morning Commute - Photo a Day number 3
Originally uploaded by gnuhaus.

Sorry for the view up my nostrils. This was taken with the keychain cam on the way to work this morning, and enhanced with Picasa. I’m pretty impressed with what it can do given an admittedly limited amount of information to start with.

Posted by Mark in: Photo a Day Challenge | Photos | Picasa | Software

March 02, 2006

Emergency - Photo a Day number 2


Emergency - Photo a Day number 2
Originally uploaded by gnuhaus.

My second image for the challenge. Still using the 640x480 pixel keychain camera. It only interfaces with Windows, so I am playing around with Picasa for editing.

This one used “I’m Feeling Lucky” in the Basic Fixes tab, a small saturation boost and an application of “Warmify” in Effects, followed by some Soft Focus.

I like how it turned out, given the quality of the original image.

Posted by Mark in: Photo a Day Challenge | Photos | Picasa | Software

March 01, 2006

Photo a day, number 1


Photo a day, number 1
Originally uploaded by gnuhaus.

So I’ve taken the challenge. Here is my first photo, taken with a 0.3 megapixel camera on a cloudy day at the University of Arizona.

I know this is Low End DSLR, but I ride my bike to work and carrying all that equipment is a bit too much (since I’m already carrying my laptop, change of clothes, and lunch).

I’ll get some DSLR shots in on the weekends…

Posted by Mark in: Photo a Day Challenge | Photos

February 27, 2006

30 Day Photo Challenge

John Koontz sent me an email this weekend that I just got around to reading:

“I came across your blog today and thought you and your readers might be interested in a photography challenge we’ve started. We’re trying to take and post a photo every day for 30 days. We’d love it if you can join us. All the info can be found here.”

Sounds like it might be fun. I might join in starting on March 1.

Posted by Mark in: Photos

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