Riley’s Farm Colonial Faire – The American Lads Pt 1

I’ve been posting a few pictures from Riley’s Farm Colonial Faire.  They were reenacting the times just prior to and including the Boston Tea Party.  I did the Lasses and the Brits already.  Now we have the Americans.  Again, the lighting was terrible, yadda yadda yadda.  And I wish I had a better telephoto so these would be a bit sharper.  But I think these turned out OK despite all the problems.  All with my Nikon D7200.  Mostly with my 55.0-300.0 mm f/4.5-5.6 lens.

This first guy spent all of his time with the candle girl I posted a while back.  And most of THAT time was spent trying to twist apples in half with his bare hands.  Riley’s Farm IS an apple orchard, after all, so I guess that’s the thing to do.  I’m not sure if the candle girl was impressed or not.  I have no idea what his actual job was supposed to be.

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Riley’s Farm Colonial Fair – The Brit Lads

As promised, here are are the lads from the Colonial Faire at Riley’s Farm in Oak Glen from a few weeks ago.  I’m not thrilled about the sharpness in some of these, but short of walking into the middle of the demonstrations, it’s the best I could do.  Now I understand why people have such huge lenses when they do this sort of thing outside of a studio.  But I’m still learning.  As I mentioned when I posted the pictures of the Lasses, the lighting was terrible.  Basically, mid-day.  So I had to do quite a bit of photoshop fuckery to get the pictures even remotely viewable.  You’ll see what I mean.  Shadows are terrible in places and over saturation is rampant.  Doesn’t help that I edited these on my laptop…which seems to show pictures a bit brighter than my desktop, so a few of these are a little dark..  But I tried.

I decided to break them up into Brits and Colonials.  First, the Brits.  They started off the day with an inspection of course.
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Meetup Experiment #1: Mermaid Theme

I recently joined a photography Meetup group .  It is basically set up so models, makeup artists and photographers can get together to build their portfolios and exchange information.  Since I don’t have a lot of experience in these things, I figured it was an easy way to at least start networking.  I went to my first meeting last weekend.  It was a Mermaid theme.  I think there were 8 or 9 different models, but I only got to work with about 5 of them.  They were all good sports about the whole thing, getting into the swampy water and climbing all over the rocks for us.

Originally, we were supposed to shoot at the beach but there was a problem with getting the proper permits.  So, we ended up at a small landscaped stream in front of a water treatment facility in Chino instead.  We spent about four hours shooting.  Unfortunately, it was at the absolute worst time of day in terms of the lighting, 10am-2pm, so I had to do a lot of Photoshop fuckery to get the shots to look even remotely decent.  Even then, a lot of it is bleached out.  Since I’ll post the pictures as I edited them, you’ll see that there was a learning curve in just how to deal with the bad lighting.

All of this was shot with my Nikon D7200, and mostly with my 55-300 mm f/4.5-5.6 lens.  Occasionally, I switched to my 18.0-140.0 mm f/3.5-5.6 lens, usually because there wasn’t a lot of space to work with and some of the models wanted full body shots.  I started off with ISO 200 but had to move to 400 for the shots that were in the shade since I wasn’t using a tripod.

First, we will start with the only pirate that showed up.
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Colonial Faire – The Lasses

My brother visited me for about a week around the 4th of July weekend.  At the time, I just happened to see a flyer for a Colonial Faire near by in Oak Glen at a place called Riley’s Farm.  Having nothing better to do, we decided to take a look.  It was relatively small, but there was a dedicated group of reenactors there so it kept us entertained for a few hours.

It was very bright that day so most of the shots were either too bright or too dark.  But I took a few hundred shots and a few of them were ok after I edited them in Photoshop.  I will start with the shots of the Lasses roaming around the village.  Also, as I put this together, I’m seeing that the editing is a bit off.  I did it all on my laptop because my desktop doesn’t have enough RAM.  I can see now that I really need to get a new damned laptop.  Some of these don’t look at all like what they looked like on the laptop.  Oh, well.

The first two are of a charming little candle girl.  She taught my brother how to make a candle from bee’s wax.

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Gordes & Arles

A few more pictures from France.  These are from Gordes in Provence and over to Arles.  Most of them are from my Nikon D7200 but there are a couple with the iPhone.   This first one is of the Senanque Abbey.  All that vegetation in front of the abbey is lavender, but we were a bit too early and nothing was fully bloomed.  I couple of weeks later and you’d see the famous lavender flowers.

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Nina in France, part 2

Here are some more attempts at portraits of Nina from our trip to France.  This time, just for fun, I tossed in some pictures I took with my iPhone. In fact, the first three are iPhone pictures. The first one is from our banquet in Toulouse.  She looked gorgeous in her purple dress, but something about this shot screamed silhouette.

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Nina in France

I was in France at the beginning of June for a conference and decided to take a bit of a vacation while I was out there.  We drove through the country, hitting several cities and towns, starting in Toulouse before heading toward Torreilles, up to Marseille, on through Provence, and back to Arles, before finishing in Montpelier.  I was lucky enough to be traveling with Nina, a exceptionally brilliant and stunningly beautiful friend of mine.  Out of the goodness of her heart, knowing that I’m trying to learn how to take portraits, she allowed me to take a few pictures of her.  Here are some of the results.  Clearly, I have a LOT to learn.  Both with my camera and with Photoshop.  Trust me when I say, they don’t even come close to doing Nina’s smile justice.  But I’m learning.  There are 10 pictures total on the Flickr page if you want to see the rest of them.

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Hostel Fish Bar with Lens Correction

I fiddled with the picture a bit more and corrected for the lens (after Sam showed me how to do it). Unfortunately, when doing the lens correction, it looks like i lost some of the light at the top of the picture.  I kinda liked that. I couldn’t get the exact same setting as last time, but it’s close.  Maybe a little dark. Oh, well.  Anyway, here you go.  Just the one picture this time.

 

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Doors

I haven’t been posting much around here lately.  In fact, it’s been a year since I last posted anything and that was a picture I took while visiting Sam in Denver. There really isn’t much around where I live that I’m excited about shooting. However, I DO have quite a few pictures from previous trips. Most recently, I’ve been looking through my pictures of Ireland and I’ve noticed a few themes. Some of these shots COULD have been spectacular if I knew what the hell I was doing. If I had Sam with his tripod with me, these would be a lot more interesting than they are.  However, I still find them fun to look at and hopefully some of you will, too.

This first set is just doors.

St Ann’s Church in downtown Dublin at 5am.

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Denver Photo Challenge: Denver Center for the Performing Arts on Fire

Version 1

Unfortunately, most of my shots of the Denver Performing Arts Center didn’t come out.  Even my shot of Sam turned out blurry.  Which sucks because it’s a shot of him laying on the ground just after taking the picture he posted earlier.  Of all the shots I took, this is the only one that had some nice geometry.  Sam agreed to play with it a bit since I couldn’t photoshop myself out of a paper bag.  This is my favorite version of what he tried.

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Looking Through Monet’s Window

A few years ago, I was lucky enough to visit Monet’s house outside of Paris.  Although the gardens were beautiful, most of the pictures I took there were not.  However, I did take one picture that I liked very much.  It’s a shot looking through a window of his house out onto the pond at the center of his enormous garden.  No doubt, he sat at this very window painting many of his Water Lilies paintings.  You can just see them in the background, floating on the water.   I never really knew what to do with it because it really doesn’t scream out “MONET!”

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