Tuesday, September 13, 2016

This was one of my first attempts at "star photography". I had attempted to shoot star trails once before several years ago and learned a valuable lesson when I changed lenses right near a campfire. My sensor was filthy after that and I had to have it cleaned (I have since learned to clean my camera sensors myself).

I recently listened to a great podcast called "Alpha Mirrorless" hosted by Juan Pons and Andy Williams. The podcast centers around mirrorless cameras and more specifically, Sony mirrorless but they touch on a wider gamut of photography topics. Recently they discussed star photography and nighttime photography and I decided to give this a shot at my camp on Galway Lake.

The key to these types of exposures is to shoot at a wide aperture (2.8 or wider is ideal) and a long shutter speed but not long enough to obtain star trails (unless that is your goal). I shot this with my D610 and my old Nikkor 20mm F/2.8 prime.

There is a ton of room for improvement but I was pleased with the way this came out after editing in Lightroom. I look forward to going back and shooting some more images like this once there is less "light pollution" around the lake. Sections of Galway Lake are more or less seasonal use only so once late fall/early winter hit, there is a lot less artificial light around the lake.

Please feel free to check out the Alpha Mirrorless podcast that I mentioned.


Monday, October 12, 2015

Looking Down the Valley of Color

I came upon this scene yesterday when I was in the area. Unfortunately, when I came upon it the first time, the sun was high in the sky and although the foliage was stunning, the light was less than interesting. The second time I came upon it, the farm in the background was in deep shadow. Basically, I hit it too early and too late. I decided to take the trip back tonight (40 minutes from home give or take five) and wait out the light. This area of Schoharie County is really rife with photo opportunities. So many beautiful farms and hillsides.

I took this photo from several angles. I really wanted to incorporate the glowing sugar maple in the foreground along with that larger row of trees that helped add a sense of scale to the valley below. Another five minutes and that farm would have once again been in shadow.

Timing is really everything in photography. We wait all year for color in the trees and then sometimes our vision of the image we want to make can come down to just minutes of possibility. In another week, this scene will look drastically different, as it did one week prior I'm sure. That's life.

Taken with my 70-200 F/2.8 and trusty old D7000.

Sunday, October 11, 2015



Nothing increases motivation for photography like a beautiful October day. I usually find foliage reports pretty unreliable and that might have a lot to do with my expectations as opposed to those reporting. That being said, I checked out the I Love NY website's foliage reports and saw that the Otsego County area was near peak. 

I drove out to Cooperstown via Route 10 to 165/166 and checked out a scene I had photographed in the past. I drove by the scene you see here on the way out and thought to myself that if the location I had in mind didn't pan out I'd come back to this one. Well, the other scene didn't offer me the color I was hoping for so I came back to this one as the sun was setting. 

If you have seen any of my photos, you know that I generally gravitate towards farms and old farm buildings. I think this image would look much better without the house and willow trees in it but seeing as though this is someone's home I don't feel quite right just erasing it from the scene. 

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Harvest Moon Charlton

Hard to believe it has been almost a year since I posted here. As has been the theme in the past, other pursuits have gotten in the way of photography. It's never been far from my mind however and I've wanted to get out and shoot something for quite a while. This was taken in a familiar location in West Charlton, NY. 

Sunday, October 12, 2014

I took a short ride to the Landis Arboretum in Esperance, NY this morning. Lots of nice views but this one was my favorite. The sun was hitting everything just right and the view of the valley below was beautiful.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Autumn makes me guilty when I am not out shooting. I see the photos that other people take and that exacerbates the situation. I'm also usually easily disappointed in the foliage that I see. I read the foliage reports and various foliage maps but I usually come away feeling like what I'm seeing must not be what everyone else is seeing.

I woke up early this morning and went out with the goal of taking one photo that I was happy with. I headed up the northway, being sure to avoid exit 23 and 24 (Warrensburg's "World's largest garage sale"). I had no location in mind but I got off exit 25 and headed towards Brant Lake. It was before sunrise when I past the lake. I saw another photographer set up at the Brant Lake boat launch and figured that I would give him some space. I kept driving and came upon this barn with the foliage on the hillside behind. I probably would have taken a photo of the barn alone but when I saw the color in the trees behind it, I knew I had to stop. It was quite cloudy when I snapped this photo and the sun had not yet broken thru.

Taken with my trusty D7000 and Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8 lens.

Friday, August 29, 2014

I like the idea of shooting for the light. That is knowing where there is going to be nice light or seeing an area of nice light and finding something to shoot based on that light.  There is a small field behind my parent's house that gets great late day sunset light. On the edge of the field were these goldenrods. The late day sun really made these goldenrod glow and as I was practicing with my macro lens. This honeybee alit on the goldenrod in front of me.

Taken with a Sigma 105mm F/2.8 macro lens.