45th Parallel Photography: Blog https://www.45thphoto.com/blog en-us (C) 45th Parallel Photography gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) Wed, 10 Feb 2021 20:33:00 GMT Wed, 10 Feb 2021 20:33:00 GMT https://www.45thphoto.com/img/s/v-12/u707016508-o276003675-50.jpg 45th Parallel Photography: Blog https://www.45thphoto.com/blog 96 120 Drone Panorama of Smith Creek Development in Woodburn, OR (Feb. 9, 2021) https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2021/2/drone-panorama-of-smith-creek-development-in-woodburn-or-feb-9-2021 I finally took the plunge and purchased my first drone, a DJI Mavic Air 2.  After reading a lot and watching many YouTube instructional videos, I took the drone out for my first flight and photo session.  This isn't anything fantastic, but more of an attempt to record something novel on my debut flight, rather than just some mediocre stills of some housetops.

We used to have a very large, wild, and undeveloped field in our neighborhood that I would wander in from time to time to photograph sunset landscapes and whatever wildlife I could get close to.  But now, it's being developed for housing, so I thought I'd take it's picture during the beginning phases of construction.

The photo is almost 500 MB in size, so I have uploaded it onto a site that will allow you to click, scan, pan, and zoom to explore its details.  Have fun, and see if you can find me.  I'm the dark figure standing at the end of a street next to some barriers, looking like he's working a drone controller.

Click on the picture.

Drone Panorama of Smith Creek Development in Woodburn, OR (Feb. 9, 2021)

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) aerial construction drone housing landscape Oregon pano panorama photo photography urban https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2021/2/drone-panorama-of-smith-creek-development-in-woodburn-or-feb-9-2021 Wed, 10 Feb 2021 20:33:28 GMT
2020 Year-End Recap https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2021/1/2020-year-end-recap Let's hope events are kinder to us all than they were in 2020.  Regardless of the turmoil of 2020, it was still a great year for photography.

Here is a short slideshow of some of our favorite shots from 2020.

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) autumn birds city cityscape country fall landscape nature ocean Oregon photo photography scenic seascape slideshow summer sunset video water waterfall wildlife winter https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2021/1/2020-year-end-recap Mon, 11 Jan 2021 00:32:18 GMT
The Prayer https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2020/4/the-prayer I was recently asked by my friend, Coos Bay photographer Steven Michael, to submit several photographs for a project he was working on. He also asked over 30 other professional photographers to submit photos as well. I am honored to be included in the group of artists he considered worthy of his project, clearly a labor of love on his part. Many are also folks I know and whose work I admire and gain inspiration from.  Enjoy.

From Steven Michael:  

During this unprecedented dark time with the Corona Virus, and having to follow stay at Home orders, the longing for an acceptance of the outdoors is becoming more and more of a "need" than a "want."

This video showcases the relationship and balance between nature and the human presence. Such balance with nature includes the virus crippling the world. My hope is that this video will comfort any anxiety, give you a chance to stop, relax, and breath. To remain positive, have hope, be patient and have faith, for this too shall pass.

A special thanks to the daughter/father duo and internet sensations; Savanna and Mat Shaw, for giving me their version of the song, THE PRAYER.

I also want to thank the thirty-four professional photographers and that graciously donated their work to make the song, THE PRAYER, visually come alive, and a thank you shout out to all who participated in the covid-mask-selfie project.

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) COVID-19 landscape music nature ocean Oregon photography sunset The Prayer video https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2020/4/the-prayer Wed, 22 Apr 2020 19:03:35 GMT
2019 Year-End Recap https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2020/1/2019-year-end-recap 2020 is upon us and another decade has slipped away. How quickly time is flowing

I hope you enjoy this simple slideshow of about 80 of our favorite photos out of the thousands we shot.  

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) autumn birds city cityscape country landscape nature new scenic seascape slideshow summer sunset video wildlife winter york https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2020/1/2019-year-end-recap Thu, 02 Jan 2020 19:54:51 GMT
Get Close and Isolate https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2019/2/get-close-and-isolate When you come upon a magnificent vista and there is so much beauty around you to photograph, resist the temptation to try to get in all in one shot. You can, of course, but usually, it will only turn out to be a jumbled mess and the beautiful details will become microscopic. Just because the whole scene is pretty to the eye doesn't mean it will make a good picture.

You need to be selective.  Zoom in a bit. Frame up one or two mountains instead of five. Get half the tree instead of the whole forest. 

Or zero in on something you can isolate, something that is beautiful or poignant in and of itself. The best pictures oftentimes are simple, isolated subjects, separated from the background by selective focus.


 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) composition focus isolation photography scenic https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2019/2/get-close-and-isolate Mon, 25 Feb 2019 19:32:36 GMT
2018 Year-End Recap https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2019/1/2018-year-end-recap This is a first for me: having the year-end recap ready on January 1.

I hope you enjoy this simple slideshow of about 70 of our favorite photos out of the thousands we shot.  

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) autumn diego landscape nature san seascape slideshow sunset video wildlife yellowstone zoo https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2019/1/2018-year-end-recap Wed, 02 Jan 2019 01:38:16 GMT
There's More Than One Way to Get a Shot https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2018/12/theres-more-than-one-way-to-get-a-shot Most people tend to get out of the car, walk a few steps, snap a shot, and then go back to the car and drive off. That means most people's pictures of the same location look pretty much the same.

The next time you are tempted to just take a quick snap of something, take a couple of seconds and ask yourself, "How can I make this unique?"

Raise your camera high up, tilt it vertically, crouch low, shoot through tree branches or flowers, find a "frame". A few seconds of thought will improve the quality of your picture and make the scene your own.

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) composition Falls Oregon photo photography waterfall Willamette https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2018/12/theres-more-than-one-way-to-get-a-shot Tue, 04 Dec 2018 22:47:56 GMT
Favorite Shots of 2017 https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2018/1/favorite-shots-of-2017 Each January, most photographers look back on the previous year and assess their work. I am no different. 

Here is a slide show of my favorite shots from 2017. 

I used the new Photos app that came with the Windows 10 Fall Creator's Update back in October 2017. The app has a built-in capability to produce relatively simple music videos using a set of standard royalty-free music clips and your own stills and video segments.  It's pretty simple, not allowing for much in the way of detailed control of timing or audio levels or custom fade-ins and outs, but if all you need is simple and straight-forward, this free app will do the job.

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) 2017 california hawaii landscapes macro mountain ocean oregon photography portraits seashore shorebirds show slide slideshow video washington water waterfowl wildlife https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2018/1/favorite-shots-of-2017 Mon, 22 Jan 2018 20:33:22 GMT
Sky Replacement Therapy https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2017/12/sky-replacement-therapy Winter in Oregon can be such a wet, dreary time.  Even Lewis and Clark complained about it. For them, camped near the mouth of the Columbia River, during the winter of 1805-1806, from December 7 to March 23, winter consisted of 106 days, only 12 of which were dry.

And it's still the same. This means most of the pictures we take in Oregon during winter can easily be with whiteout skies, especially when you have to boost the exposure by one or two stops to get your subject properly exposed.  Sometimes, there is the additional irritation of ugly background objects that distract from the cleanness of the composition.

I'm not usually an advocate of replacing large swaths of an image with a large chunk from another image. I'm not really into composite imaging that much. I'm not saying it's bad or wrong somehow. I simply don't do it beyond some removing of trash or sensor dust spots, little things like that. As much as I may appreciate the artistry of compositors, and I do, I'm just not that good at it, so i tend to avoid it.

So, anyway, here I was driving home from a customer call. I was in an agricultural area near where I live called French Prairie, and out of the corner of my eye I catch a glimpse of an American Kestrel sitting in a tree. So, I slowed down and pulled over. As I slowly rolled up to position the kestrel directly across from my driver-side window and rolled it down, it got scared. I barely had enough time to grab my camera and fire off a burst, hoping that the auto-focus had locked on.  One shot, just this one shot came out. All the other 5 or 6 images were either way off the mark or terribly blurred.  This is what I got, a pretty bird and an ugly background.

Another shot, a short 10 minutes later, was of a church with Russian "onion domes" as part of its architecture. There are several such churches in my area of Oregon, and I wanted to see if I could come up with an interesting composition. Unfortunately, the property is surrounded by a 6-foot fence, and it had started to rain, making the mud in front of the property all the more sticky and slick. The best I could do is flip the view screen down and hold the camera over my head, composing while looking like some sort of crazed scarecrow, hoping no raindrops landed on the lens.

Again, the sky was awful, but this time there was an added bonus of those ugly power lines, a power pole, and big black insulators. It simply destroyed the mood I had hoped to create.

What to do, what to do?  

Well, it's Topaz Remask to the rescue. Remask is a really easy way to mask off areas in a photo that need to be replaced. You basically draw a line over the border between the area you want to keep and the area you want to replace. You can adjust the intensity and hardness or softness of the mask edges. Let the program calculate and overlay the mask. Then you select an image that will replace the part of your photo that your don't want. Adjustments and remasking are possible until you get everything just right. Then you export the new image. Your old image is preserved.

Here are the two images from above with new backgrounds applied to them. 

I think you would agree, that even though the pictures are now a little fanciful, that they are certainly more interesting than the originals. Since I won't be trying to pass them off as "straight-out-of-the-camera" or any representation of "reality", I really don't see any harm in it, other than them being examples of the potential of digital art.

And I feel much better now that i have gotten rid of the hideous white skies.

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) architecture church cloudy compositing drab exposure kestrel over-exposed raptor remask replacement sky topaz whiteout winter https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2017/12/sky-replacement-therapy Sun, 31 Dec 2017 03:39:00 GMT
Say What? https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2017/12/say-what I'm not quite sure whether this is a mistake or whether it's sexist or racist or what. One can't readily tell nowadays. Or maybe someone told Leica to "grow a pair". 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) dxomark leica m10 sensor test https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2017/12/say-what Sat, 16 Dec 2017 18:52:42 GMT
The Eclipse of 2017 https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2017/8/the-eclipse-of-2017

We who live here in Oregon, along roughly the line of the 45th parallel, were very fortunate to be under the path of totality during the total eclipse of 2017. I had experienced eclipses before, several partial, one annular, and one total that was completely obscured by heavy clouds in 1979.  But this was my first experience of totality during a clear day, and it was absolutely stunning. A partial eclipse of even 99.9% is no match for 100%. You are completely blown away by what's happening all around you. The temperature drops significantly. Animals become quiet and some prepare for sleep. The day begins to dim, transforming into a strange grayish tone all around.  Sometimes, mysterious "shadow snakes" appear on flat, smooth areas. Under leafy trees, curious crescent-shaped shadows appear. 

And then, all of a sudden, totality! The day is no longer day, it's something else. You take off your eye protection.  By the naked eye, you see a black hole in the sun, and the sun's super-heated atmosphere, the corona, spreads its glowing rays all around the disk. It is quiet all around you. Street lights may have come on. The horizon is ringed by a 360-degree "sunset", yet you know the sun is above you. Stars and planets appear in the sky. And you gaze upwards in awe.

All too soon, the process is reversed. A pure white flash appears where the moon begins to move past the edge of the sun. It's time to put your solar eye shields back on and watch the sun reappear.  Little by little, the world returns to its normal state, and because of the majesty and wonder of the event you just experienced, you are a little sad that it is gone. Yet, you are still euphoric at having experienced one of the most amazing phenomena in all of creation. The glow of the experience will stay with you for the rest of the day. And the memory of it will never leave you.

The next total solar eclipse for America is scheduled for April 8, 2024, traversing the USA from Texas to Maine. If you are able, I strongly encourage you to try to experience it in person. It is unforgettable and truly breathtaking.

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) astrophotography corona eclipse moon oregon photo photography solar sun sunset total https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2017/8/the-eclipse-of-2017 Tue, 22 Aug 2017 20:37:52 GMT
Got Color? https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2017/3/got-color Back in the late 1960s, I worked for American Broadcasting Company in Hollywood, California, as a page.  We were a part of the Guest Relations Department, and were responsible for managing studio audiences, TV show ticketing, backstage security, and so on. I worked on many classic TV shows, including The Hollywood Palace, American Bandstand, The Lawrence Welk Show, General Hospital, The Dating Game, and The Newlywed Game. However, I was assigned to one show more than the others, and that was The Joey Bishop Show, ABC's late night attempt to compete against Johnny Carson.  I can truly say it was the one job on which I had the most fun, ever, and I have many fond memories from it.

At the time, I owned a couple of Polaroid cameras. One was a big, rather ungainly camera that had the capability of using color film. The other was a smaller, more portable, black and white only camera, called the Swinger.  Needless to say, management frowned on us carrying cameras while on the job, so my photo opportunities, while numerous, were not easily taken advantage of.

Consequently, I have only one photograph of myself in my page uniform. It's a small black and white shot of me standing in front of the studio where the Joey Bishop Show was taped. I have always wished I had a color shot. The black and white photo didn't do our uniforms justice. The uniform we were required to wear included a red blazer with black lapels, an ABC logo patch on each shoulder, and black pants with a red stripe running the length of each pant leg on the outside seam.  All of us pages hated it, and wished we had uniforms like the NBC pages with their classy navy blue blazers and gray slacks.

In comes colorize-it.com, an easy way to transform black and white photos into color. It, of course, isn't perfect, but if you have some simple photo editing software, it gives you a head start and saves a lot of time.  Below is the picture of me in my page uniform, taken in April 1968.  On the left is a scan from the original b&w Polaroid print, and on the right is the output from colorize-it.com. I then spent about 10 minutes of additional editing work in Adobe Lightroom.

 

The original black and white photo of the left, and the colorized photo on the right.Before and AfterThe original black and white photo of the left, and the colorized photo on the right.

As I said, it isn't perfect. The program has to make lots of assumptions about colors. In my case, it assumed the color of my coat correctly as red. Unfortunately, it misjudged the ABC logo in the background. The logo was actually blue.  But if I didn't tell you, would you have known? Of course not, so it's not so bad. Having a colorized picture of a precious memory that is 95% correct is much better than nothing.

I recommend giving it a try. You have nothing to lose. Just upload your test photo to the web site using its "Upload" button and see how well it does. There is a purple bar that is displayed on your photo that you can slide back and forth, allowing you to see the "before" and "after" images. And then you can download the result back to your computer. What's more, it won't cost you a penny.

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) b&w black color colorization colorize colorize-it.com editing monochrome photography white https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2017/3/got-color Thu, 23 Mar 2017 15:30:00 GMT
2016 Highlights https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2017/1/2016-highlights We're a couple weeks late on this. A new grandchild.  Unexpected health issues. Customer demands.  Life happens.  In any case, here's our attempt at looking back on some favorite shots and favorite moments that took place in 2016.  We hope you enjoy them.

We also wish you all a healthy, happy, and prosperous 2017.

If you'd like to see our previous year-end videos, please click here to jump to 45th Parallel's YouTube Channel.

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) 2016 California Oregon Pacific Utah YouTube beach birds coast landscape lighthouse ocean photography portrait sunset video waterfall wildlife https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2017/1/2016-highlights Sat, 28 Jan 2017 00:10:26 GMT
Stunning eye-candy timelapse of Los Angeles https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2016/10/stunning-eye-candy-timelapse-of-los-angeles Maybe I'm nostalgic. Maybe I'm just biased because it's my birth city. I don't know, but this video timelapse of Los Angeles is the best I've seen so far. It's simply magnificent.

Have a look, full-screen, full HD. 

PANO | LA from SCIENTIFANTASTIC on Vimeo.

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) California Los Angeles lapse night time timelapse video https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2016/10/stunning-eye-candy-timelapse-of-los-angeles Tue, 25 Oct 2016 17:46:04 GMT
Lightning and the Panasonic GX8 https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2016/6/lightning-and-the-panasonic-gx8 I've played with shooting lightning in the past. Usually, a tripod is required, and an aperture open for 20 to 30 seconds. The exposure is treated as a flash shot with the light source being the lightning itself. 

But what if you don't have a tripod handy and you're experiencing some spectacular electrical discharges? You can always try to react to the lightning as quickly as possible and fire off a shot. This is really hit and miss. Our reaction times are typically not fast enough, and in the excitement of it all, we'd have a tendency to shake the camera as we jam hard on the trigger. It would be better to shoot in a high-speed burst mode. You'll be more able to capture some secondary flashes, as in this shot.

This is where Panasonic's new GX8 camera can really help. I recently purchased one to explore the world of Micro-Four-Thirds photography. Panasonic has a shooting mode called 4KPhoto, which essentially allows you to select frames out of a 4K video file. Each frame is 8 mega-pixels, so it's large enough to make 8 x 10 prints. Normally, moving subjects in a video stream need a slight bit of motion blur to make the video smoother to our eye. But 4KPhoto frames retain all the settings of the camera that we would use for stills, so are as sharp as we want. We just need to review each frame and pick the one that captured the exact moment we want. Panasonic makes this a very easy process in-camera. Or, simply import the 4KPhoto video file into Photoshop or Lightroom, and analyze the frames there.

One feature of 4KPhoto is that it can actually get a picture before you press the shutter release. It's as if the camera is reading your mind for getting the shot you want. What it's really doing is very clever, although it does tend to slurp up a lot of battery juice. It's continuously recording one second, or 30 frames, of video into a FIFO buffer.  FIFO means First In, First Out. The buffer never stops filling, because just as the last frame is recorded the first frame is erased, so room in the buffer is always available. Then, when you press the shutter release, another one second of video is recorded and attached to the FIFO buffer. Both pieces, now one file, are saved to your memory card. You now have a 60-shot burst of 8 mega-pixel pictures to choose from, taken before and after you pressed the shutter release. No matter how slow your reaction time, the odds of you getting the shot is now much better. 

This is fantastic for capturing that one precise moment that is so difficult with fast moving subjects like children, wildlife, and in this case, lightning.

Now, back to me.  Once I figured out how to activate 4KPhoto mode in my GX8, and adjusted my desired settings, I went out into the night where the lightning bolts were flashing every 30 to 60 seconds, or so.  (Please don't do this right under the storm. Lightning is extremely dangerous. My storm was many miles away. It was so far away, you couldn't even hear any thunder.) Of course, some bolts were more spectacular than others. With my camera solidly steadied against a rail and post, every time I saw a bolt flash I pressed the shutter release, trying to do it as smoothly as possible. 

Click: 60 exposures. Click: another 60. And so on. After about 10 minutes I had accumulated what I thought were enough frames to have captured at least something

After importing all the 4K video files into Lightroom, I was able to quickly scan through each frame for something interesting, and save the frame for further processing. I threw away many frames that were totally black, and also many that just weren't what I was looking for, like the picture above with no bolt.

The four best shots are shown below. The first two show some blurring of the lightning bolt, and I think that was from my excitement and jabbing the shutter so hard early on. The other two came after I calmed down and got into a more deliberate and smoother execution.

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) 4KPhoto GX8 Panasonic burst flash high high-speed lightning speed https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2016/6/lightning-and-the-panasonic-gx8 Sun, 05 Jun 2016 01:43:39 GMT
The Kids are Healthy and Growing https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2016/5/the-kids-are-healthy-and-growing Back in late March of this year (2016), we heard of a location at Smith Rock State Park in Terrebonne, Oregon, in which bald eagles had built a nest and laid a couple of eggs.  Immediately, we made plans to visit the area. Happily, we were also committed to a three-day photoshoot in Fort Rock, Oregon, in early April.  We decided to visit Smith Rock on our way home from that shoot.

After a fortuitous encounter with a park ranger, we quickly found our way to a ledge overlooking the canyon and across from a tall tree. We were just about at eye-level with the eagles' nest, if not slightly higher. The chicks were only a few days old.


  
 
   

 

Fast-forward to May, four weeks later. We drove down to Klamath Falls for the specific purpose of photographing Western Grebes during their mating season. The birds perform a rather unique mating dance that culminates in the courting pair running across the surface of the water.  I just had to catch that.

On our return ride home on Mother's Day, we swung by Smith Rock again to check up on the chicks. I'm glad to say they appear to be healthy and are growing into a pair of fine, strapping eaglets.

A little Mother's Day peck on the cheek.


 

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) bald birds chick eagle eaglet Oregon raptor Smith Rock wildlife https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2016/5/the-kids-are-healthy-and-growing Tue, 10 May 2016 18:47:21 GMT
What a hoot. A camera for owls. https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2016/2/what-a-hoot-a-camera-for-owls Specifications for the new, upcoming replacement for Canon's 70D, the 80D, have surfaced. It appears Canon engineers have finally listened to owl photographers everywhere, and built in the capability to call them on their smartphones.

I hope there are enough owls out there that have smartphones to make this feature worthwhile.

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) 80D Canon bird hooting owls photography remote smartphone https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2016/2/what-a-hoot-a-camera-for-owls Tue, 16 Feb 2016 18:48:20 GMT
2015 Highlights and New YouTube Channel https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2016/1/2015-highlights-and-new-youtube-channel At the end of each year, it seems a common practice to look back and try to relive and appreciate anew some of the high points that we experienced in the last 12 months.  We're no different.  We have some photographs that we are very pleased with, because it not only brings us back to the moment when we shot them, but it also shows to us how we have improved in our abilities.  And since we did not get around to coming up with a "best of" list for 2014, we did one for that year as well as for 2015.

At the same time, we have been thinking that we really need to start our own YouTube channel to share our work and offer some tips and advcice.  Now seems to be an opportune moment, and so, that's what we have done. 

Both of the photo collections we just finished, "Highlights of 2014" and "Highlights of 2015" have been uploaded to our new YouTube channel.  More and different kinds of videos will be coming down the pike, so please take a moment and click on the "Subscribe" button to add our channel to your list of notifications for when new material is published. 

Here's wishing you all a healthy, happy, and prosperous new year, 2016.  


Click here to jump to 45th Parallel Photography's YouTube Channel  

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) 2015 beach best california. channel coast glacier landscapes montana national northwest ocean oregon pacific park photo photography photos shots video washington waterfall wildlife youtube https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2016/1/2015-highlights-and-new-youtube-channel Mon, 04 Jan 2016 15:30:00 GMT
First Place Photo https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2015/12/first-place-photo A Bald Eagle complaining about our presence.A Bald Eagle complaining about our presence. I am very proud to announce that my picture of a bald eagle, "Screecher", was awarded First Place for Wildlife at the Fall 2015 meeting of the Nature Photographers of the Pacific Northwest.  See it here.

Out of over 90 entries in the Wildlife category, 14 took Third Place, 12 took Second Place, and 7 took First. To be included in this group of highly skilled and artistic photographers is quite an honor, and I am humbled by it.

Have a look at all the entries in all the categories here:  http://www.nppnw.org/fall-2015/

 

 

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) bald bird eagle first nature northwest nppnw pacific photographers photography place prey raptor wildlife https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2015/12/first-place-photo Wed, 16 Dec 2015 18:19:43 GMT
Send Your Christmas Tree into Hyper-Space https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2015/12/send-your-christmas-tree-into-hyper-space Christmas Tree in Hyper-SpaceChristmas Tree in Hyper-Space

Since I posted this picture to my timeline on my personal Facebook page, several folks have asked me how I did this.  It's no big secret, but you have to do a little experimenting until you get a shot that is good enough to show off. I shot maybe 15 to 20 exposures, and out of all those, only one was good enough.  Even so, I know I could have done better.

So, here's what you need to do.

First, you absolutely must have a very steady tripod.  You need to be able to lock down where the camera is pointing to. Since you will be touching the camera while it is exposing the shot,  it is critical that any movement or vibration of the camera is minimized.

Next, you need a zoom lens. Manipulating the focal length while the exposure is being made is what causes the shooting star effect. Compose your picture using the widest focal length. 

Your lighting will be different from what mine was, so I can't tell you how to set your ISO and shutter speed. You'll have to experiment.  Set your camera to "M" or Manual Mode, and make adjustments to your ISO and f-stop.  I set my ISO to 200 and my aperture to f/11 for sharp detailed focus and just a hint of star points 

I finalized my shutter speed, after several tries, settling on 8 seconds. This gave me time to manipulate the zoom lens and still have several seconds of un-moving exposure at the end for firming up the image.

Once you get everything set up, your camera on a tripod, your picture composed in the camera's viewfinder the way you want it to appear at its widest focal length, your shutter speed set to the number of seconds that gives a good exposure and allows enough time for you to zoom the lens, you are ready to have a go at it.

You start with zooming in as close as you want to be. That's where the light trails will start. I was using a 24-105 lens and stood about 12 feet away from my tree. Get a sharp focus in the center of your composition. While holding the zoom ring of your lens, click the trigger. Once the aperture is open, as smoothly as you possibly can, start zooming the lens out to it's widest point. You should try to reach the widest focal length before the shutter closes. You will need a couple of seconds for the image to be steady for it to be captured clearly and well defined, otherwise everything in the shot will be blurry and "ghostly".

This will require many tries, but for the diligent you will be rewarded with a picture that your friends will wonder how you did it. And you will have learned a skill that can be applied to other scenes. Think about, maybe, that Christmas-light-covered house down the street.

Have fun! And have a Merry Christmas.

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) Christmas effect exposure in light long out photography points special star trails tree zoom https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2015/12/send-your-christmas-tree-into-hyper-space Mon, 07 Dec 2015 19:23:53 GMT
Sunset Silhouettes https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2015/10/sunset-silhouettes Sunset SilhouettesSunset Silhouettes

One of our pictures made it to the web site Only In Your State, part of an article titled What These 10 Oregon Photographers Captured Will Blow You Away.

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) coast coastline house light lighthouse ocean oregon pacific rock sea sunset water https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2015/10/sunset-silhouettes Mon, 19 Oct 2015 16:22:14 GMT
Move https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2015/5/move Once upon a time, long ago, time-lapse movies were a thing of wonder. We would watch a flower bloom or the clouds zoom by, and wonder at the uniqueness and beauty of it all.  But nowadays, with the advent of highly powered digital photographic equipment at very affordable prices, there are so many time-lapse videos being published that's it's easy to become jaded and just yawn at another set of clouds zooming across the sky.

Once in a while, however, a photographer who gives rein to his artistic vision and who has honed his technical skills to a fine point, publishes a video that outshines the competition and stands out from the crowd.  "Move" is one such time-lapse by excellent photographer, Aaron Keigher.

Watch it here and enjoy a world that is in constant motion.

Move from Aaron Keigher on Vimeo.

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) city landscape lapse milky motion move nature sky stars time time-lapse video way https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2015/5/move Sat, 09 May 2015 19:33:42 GMT
How Canon Became So Successful https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2015/2/how-canon-became-so-successful Canon is the world's largest camera manufacturer. It makes cameras from very small point-and-shoots to full-frame professional grade still and video cameras.  But to what does it owe its incredible success?

In this video interview a Canon representative recounts the decisions made by management that led to their dominance of the imaging industry. Was it bold and striking marketing? Was it cutting-edge and innovative engineering? Take a few minutes and get an insight into how abundant success is achieved.

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) canon dslr eos interview photography satire video https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2015/2/how-canon-became-so-successful Fri, 13 Feb 2015 17:56:39 GMT
Supertelephotoexcitatious! https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/12/supertelephotoexcitatious I just received the new lens I purchased.  For a long time now, I have been wanting to get a more powerful telephoto than the 70-200mm f/4L I already have. So, for a self-inflicted birthday present, I ordered the Tamron 150-600mm lens.

When I unpacked it, my wife's jaw just about hit the floor. This monster is huge.  As a comparison, here are my two telephotos side-by-side.

Canon 70-200 and Tamron 150-600Both of these are extended out to their maximum focal length.

And I thought my 70-200 was big! 

A few weeks ago, when I was out shooting at the Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge near Olympia, Washington, an otter came trotting up the frozen stream toward me.  When he got to within 30 or 40 feet, he looked directly at me, determined I was harmless, and then went about his business, completely ignoring me.   Of course, I was madly clicking away, getting as many shots of the otter as I could with my 70-200. 

I think I got bitten by the wildlife bug that morning.  I hope I can master this huge behemoth of a lens and bring back some spectacular images of all kinds of wildlife, songbirds, raptors, woodland critter, and such. 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) Canon Canon 70-200 Tamron Tamron 150-600 lens super telephoto zoom https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/12/supertelephotoexcitatious Mon, 01 Dec 2014 20:55:02 GMT
Tubular Man! https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/11/tubular-man "I just went out and did what I loved."   "Don’t ever underestimate the power of having fun with one of your obsessions."

You just have to admire a person who is willing to go where most are not willing to go.  Whether that person is a test pilot or an astronaut, a movie maker or architect, if the product of their efforts is unique and of breathtaking quality, we simply have to respect that person for their drive.  

Clark Little is such a photographer.  

 

 

For a more in-depth interview, click on the picture.

Clark Little Wave Photo

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) break breaker clark danger little ocean photo photographer risk shore water wave https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/11/tubular-man Thu, 13 Nov 2014 19:08:20 GMT
Amazing Music Video Done in One Take https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/10/amazing-music-video-done-in-one-take The new music video below was done by a group called OK Go, and their new song is "I Won't Let You Down".  I'm not familiar with the group, but this got my attention.  

The little Segway-like devices they are riding were provide my Honda, and the helicopter carrying the camera was a DJI S1000.  The interesting thing is, they had to run the song at half-speed while doing the choreography. This gave the copter time to move around and get into position for the various angles and altitudes of the shot.  Later, in post-production, the playback was sped up to normal speed.

The really great thing is, this was done all in one take.  No cuts, no edits, no inserts.  All done from start to finish without stopping.  That is incredible!

Have a look and enjoy the visuals and the music.

 

 

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) I Won't Let You Down OK Go cuts edits music no one take video https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/10/amazing-music-video-done-in-one-take Tue, 28 Oct 2014 19:48:47 GMT
A Note of Appreciation https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/10/a-note-of-appreciation The following is from an email we received after an engagement photo session with a terrific young couple, Sam and Alyssa.


"We did an engagement photo shoot with George last Sunday and had an awesome time with great results! He was easy to work with, and we got a lot of great shots in a good time frame. Really helped having multiple photographers. The shoot was relaxing and fun, and with a location already picked out by George, we just had to show up and smile. We were more than pleased with the resulting pictures to make our album from!"

You can see their pictures and music video here.  They picked out the music, and we provided the pictures.

 

We would love to create some memories for you, too. Give us a holler.

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) appreciation endorsement letter photo photographer portrait recommendation referral https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/10/a-note-of-appreciation Mon, 27 Oct 2014 17:12:21 GMT
Long Beach Waterfront Panorama https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/9/long-beach-waterfront-panorama As we were ending a recent visit to the Los Angeles area, and since we were flying out of the Long Beach airport, with about two hours to kill, we decided to make a mad dash visit to the waterfront.  I didn't have my DSLR with me, so with my wife's trusty pocket point-and-shoot, I tried an experiment.

With no tripod available, I carefully took 10 exposures of the Long Beach waterfront from the Queen Mary parking area. I was careful to keep the camera level and aligned with the seawall, overlapping each shot by about one fourth.

I stitched the images together in Microsoft's Image Composite Editor and adjusted color and lighting and ragged borders in Adobe Lightroom. Since wide panoramas are typically too wide to view easily, I have posted it to a web site that specializes in displaying and printing really big pictures, GigaPan.com.

So, here is my 65 mega-pixel picture. For best effect, click on the full-screen icon, then zoom in until the picture overflows your screen and becomes slightly pixelated.  Then, zoom out slightly until the picture gets clear and sharp.  Now scroll left and right and up and down to explore the Long Beach waterfront.

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) beach ca cal calif california front harbor long sea wall water waterfront https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/9/long-beach-waterfront-panorama Thu, 11 Sep 2014 15:00:00 GMT
Risky Business https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/8/risky-business  

I will be visiting the lava flows on Hawaii's Big Island in a month, and I hope to come back with some spectacular shots.  And as much as I realize getting the shot no one else has requires you to go where no one else has been, I definitely will not be like Miles Morgan, the Portland photographer in the photo. I am simply not that crazy brave.  

Besides, my wife won't let me. 

National Geographic Magazine is world-renowned for it's high standards of photography and of the daring-do of its photographers. Those guys and gals will do almost anything to get the jaw-dropping, tear-inducing, awe-inspiring shot.  A recent tally of 45 Nat Geo photographers resulted in some interesting statistics, stuff that they, I'm sure, wished they didn't have to go through, and stuff, I'm sure, I will never have to endure.

Enjoy this table of risks, a tribute to their glamorous life: The Hazards of a National Geographic Photographer, and especially read the Vignettes. Wow.

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) danger dedication photo photography risk https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/8/risky-business Wed, 20 Aug 2014 19:26:50 GMT
Customer Endorsement https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/8/customer-endorsement The following is taken from an email we received after providing pictures from a photo shoot:

 
Wow you are quick!  :)
 
For someone who dreads seeing myself in pictures...these turned out very lovely! I really love the lighting you captured. One of them actually makes my eyes sort of glow. I can definitely use these, I think there were a few in particular that captured some of the attitude I was going for. 
 
So my plan is to figure out which ones I will keep to use for my FB page periodically, which ones to use for a future website, and begin thinking about what I'd like to represent my new song. I don't like giving out too much info at once at this time, so showing certain pics will be gradual (and a bit strategic). 
 
I will most definitely attach a link to your photo business whenever I post a pic so hopefully that can bring you more business!  :-)
 
Thank you so very much, again, for doing these photos and for doing them well.
 
Take care!
 
Kristina
 
 
You can see Kristina's pictures here.  We'd love to provide you with the same creative services.  Contact us here.
 
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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) child children family head headshot photo portrait session shoot shot https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/8/customer-endorsement Mon, 04 Aug 2014 17:35:52 GMT
Photography Location Search Engine https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/7/photography-location-search-engine Got an itch to trip the shutter, but haven't a clue about where to go or what to shoot? Well, ShotHotSpot has a solution. Just enter where you are or where you're going to be, and ShotHotSpot will come up with a list of places to photograph. 

Try it here for some inspiration. 

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) engine locale location photo photography picture place search https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/7/photography-location-search-engine Mon, 28 Jul 2014 19:34:18 GMT
Selfies with Style https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/7/selfies-with-style We've all done it, taken our camera or cell phone and turned it around on ourselves to snap a self-portrait, or "selfie" as they are known now. But how much thought have you ever put into your selfies?

I know, most of the time they are just for fun and recording the moment, but aren't they typically out of focus or blurred or distorted or you at your not quite best?  Why don't we make a small promise to ourselves to beautify the world just a little bit by being more conscious of the quality of our self-portraits. After all, that's you in the picture, and you're better looking than that!

As a small nudge for some inspiration, here's a link to some amazing self-portraits.  I, at least, am glad I discovered these. My image can use all the help it can get.

See them here.

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) creative creativity portrait self self-portrait selfie selfy style https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/7/selfies-with-style Wed, 23 Jul 2014 20:21:00 GMT
Made to be Seen https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/7/made-to-be-seen  

"He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end." -- Ecclesiastes 3:11

 

An argument can be made that the appreciation of beauty is a trait that is not essential to the survival of a species, therefore the existence of beauty, which is an ascribed value, is itself an argument against the Theory of Evolution.  Be that as it may, I won't argue that here. Rather, I want to present the work of an aspiring young videographer, who happens to believe the Bible verse quoted above.

Take the next five minutes and simply enjoy his work in recording the beauty of His work.  (If you have a fast enough Internet connection, set this for full-screen in HighDef.)

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) america beautiful beauty creation lapse sunrise sunset time timelapse waterfall https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/7/made-to-be-seen Fri, 04 Jul 2014 22:39:16 GMT
Long Exposure HDR https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/6/long-exposure-hdr I've been spending a week on the Oregon Coast, and the weather has been spectacular, by and large, and wonderful for some colorful photographic opportunities.  Unfortunately, on our fifth day, the weather turned gray and gloomy with scattered rainfall.   

So, as I was sitting at the dining table of our rental house, looking out onto the drab, pale beach, the thought came to me this was the perfect opportunity to try an experiment I had been wanting to do for quite some time.  I decided to try to make a decent long-exposure High Dynamic Range photo of the beach view from our rental's covered deck.

I pulled out my Neutral Density filters and mounted an ND4 and an ND8 together in front of my Canon 24-105 f/4L lens. Along with my tripod, I set the camera up on a patio table and composed the shot in Manual Mode at f/22 and ISO-100. Using the camera's built-in 2-second timer to eliminate any camera shake caused by my fat fingers, I fired off five shots, changing the shutter speed with each shot.

From under the covered deck, and shooting through the falling rain, this is what I got:

15 seconds

10 seconds

6 seconds

4 seconds

2 seconds

 

As you can see, there is very little contrast and the light is so diffuse that all colors are rather muted.  This is where the HDR concept comes in.  It is able to bring out details in the under-exposed parts of the picture, and temper the blown-out sections of the picture.

I used a program called Photomatix to align and merge the separate exposures into one.  As you might expect, multiple exposures over a long period of time result in slightly different positioning of elements within the picture.  Plants and trees are moved my the wind. Wave action, of course, is blurred.  Birds and people move.  These will leave artifacts in the merged picture called "ghosts" that are quite distracting and detract from the image.  Photomatix has the ability to manage ghosting and minimize its effect.

Here is the resulting merged picture after processing by Photomatix, using its default settings, which is usually a good starting place before feeding the it into Lightroom or Photoshop for final adjustments.

I like all the elements in the picture that didn't move, like the birds and the rocks.  They are fairly sharp and detailed.  I also love the effect that the long exposures had on the ocean waves, giving a silky smooth effect.  And the horizon has been made soft by the rain fall and mist I had to shoot through.  I'm not too keen on the plants in the foreground. Their coloration and blurred effect detract from the picture and draw your eyes to them, spoiling the overall look of the scene.

I then took the picture and imported it into Lightroom, so that I could crop it and tweak the colors and contrast until I was happy with it. 

 
 I think it's not too bad for a first try at this sort of thing.
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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) HDR dynamic exposure high high dynamic range long range https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/6/long-exposure-hdr Fri, 13 Jun 2014 19:47:01 GMT
Beautiful Portland https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/4/beautiful-portland I live in the northern part of Oregon's Willamette Valley, almost exactly half-way between the state capital of Salem and the largest city in the state, Portland.  It is an area rich in history and has an abundance of extra-ordinary everyday beauty.  My business carries me all over the area, from farmland and rural settings to deep into the interior of city streets. Whether I have to be in the countryside or in the urban forest, I can't help being a happy and grateful man, privileged to be living in such a place.

It's true that all places have their own particular beauty, whether it's a vast desert, a majestic mountain range, or the bustling and congestion of a city. All you have to do is look for it with an eye for appreciation.  Here is an excellent time lapse video of the place I call home.   

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) Oregon Portland lapse time travel video https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/4/beautiful-portland Tue, 22 Apr 2014 06:49:42 GMT
Zoom-Zoom-Zoom https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/3/zoom-zoom-zoom Every photographer needs to understand the capabilities and limitations of their mix of equipment.  Here, let's consider looking at only lenses and camera bodies.  The combinations of lenses with differing focal lengths and cameras of different sensor sizes can be mind boggling.  Nobody can have all possible lenses for all possible camera bodies, and have an immediate grasp of how all these affect each other and the pictures they produce. It simply isn't practical, nor is it necessary.  

New photographers sometimes find it difficult to comprehend all the implications. Visualizing how one lens behaves on cameras with different sensor sizes is something that needs to be learned and understood. It affects the very outcome of the picture you are taking.

Fortunately, to help visualize the differences between lenses on different cameras, Canon has produced the Field of View Comparator:

Field of View Comparator

This is pretty nice.  In the left-hand column, in the Camera A box, select your preferred camera, perhaps the one you own and use the most.  Then, in the Camera B box, select a camera you'd like to use for comparison.  Typically, this would be one that uses a different kind of sensor chip than the one in Camera A.  In the picture above I have selected a crop-sensor camera for Camera A, my Canon 60D, and a full-frame camera for Camera B, a Canon 5D Mk III.

Next, move the Focal Length slider to the value you'd like to compare.  Here, I have set it to 50 mm.  You can see, as the two cameras you selected are looking at the exact same scene, how the differing focal lengths and different type of sensors change the scope of the picture you will get.  With the example above, the 50 mm lens on a full-frame camera sees a much wider view that the one produced by the same lens on a crop-sensor camera. In fact, the crop-sensor produces a picture that is 1.6 times closer to the subject. (See the crop factor values indicated in the lower right-hand of the picture.) 

So, if you are using a camera that has a sensor smaller than a full-frame camera, you can use the crop factor to calculate the effective focal length a particular lens will have on that camera.  In this case, the 50 mm lens will produce a picture on my Canon 60D with an effective focal length of 80 mm.  (50 mm x 1.6 crop factor)  This is good to remember, because focal lengths for lenses are designated by their full-frame values.  My Canon EF-S 18-200 mm lens for my crop-sensor Canon 60D in reality has an effective range of 29-320 mm.  It is a longer lens, effectively, than it would be if it could be mounted on a full-frame camera.

Play around with various values and camera selections. It will help give you a better idea of the capabilities of your current gear, and perhaps give you a direction and priority for purchasing new equipment. 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) angle compare crop focal frame full length sensor telephoto visualize wide https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/3/zoom-zoom-zoom Thu, 27 Mar 2014 19:22:35 GMT
Then Now Here 2014 https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/3/then-now-here-2014 It's with great satisfaction that I am pleased to announce that two of my pictures have been selected to take their place in the 2014 Then Now Here slideshow at the Oregon Historical Society on April 16, 2014.  The slide show is a compilation of images from 66 Oregonian photographers and is "a celebration of Oregon, its people, its landscape, its unique character, and special history".

Additionally, the Then Now Where slideshow will be screened the entire month of April in the front window of the Blue Sky Gallery.

I intend to be at the opening reception on Wednesday, April 16, at 7:00 PM.  It would be a lot of fun to see a bunch of my friends there as well.  There will be live music, snacks, and an exhibit of Ansel Adams Masterworks open for viewing at the same time.

These are the two photos that were selected:

Line Dance
 
Balloon Light

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) Oregon Photolucida historical society https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/3/then-now-here-2014 Wed, 19 Mar 2014 22:39:47 GMT
Superman with a GoPro https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/3/superman-with-a-gopro Here's a clever and fun video that was made with a GoPro video camera mounted to quad-copter. Some additional footage from other cameras was edited in as well.  What resulted was a fun three-minutes of Superman saving the day, but from his point of view.

Watch Superman Save Metropolis Through a POV Action Camera

And, being the nerd I am, I loved watching the "How They Did It" video. If you're into that sort of thing, you'll enjoy it too.

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) GoPro Superman drone quadcopter video https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/3/superman-with-a-gopro Wed, 19 Mar 2014 16:37:46 GMT
29 Places in America to See Before You Die https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/3/29-places-in-america I've been to six, so far. I'm going to be visiting three more in 2014.  That leaves me only 20 more.  How about you?

29 Places In America You Need To VisitIf you live in the U.S., you don’t need a passport to see some of the glories of creation.

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) America Bryce Canyon Falls Gorge Oneonta Sequoia USA Yosemite Zion https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/3/29-places-in-america Wed, 12 Mar 2014 20:53:13 GMT
Interview https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/3/interviewOCTAF I was recently interviewed for the Oregon City Trinity Arts Festival.  The questions were about my interest in photography, and how my Christian faith influences my work.  If you are interested in what I had to say, have a look here.

Trinity Arts Festival

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) art faith interview photography religion worldview https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/3/interviewOCTAF Fri, 07 Mar 2014 00:16:51 GMT
Location, Location, Location https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/3/location-location-location Sometimes, it is so easy to get drowned in the mundane, day-to-day activities of life and temporarily lose sight of the beauty around you. Appreciation for your surroundings can be jarring, once you snap out of it and re-realize the wonder of it all.

That's why I love living in Oregon so much.  We are surrounded by incredible masterpieces of creation, and so many of them, it almost makes me feel like I have an unfair advantage, as compared to photographers who live in other places.  With so much majesty around, it's almost difficult to take a bad picture.

Of course, I have my tongue firmly planted in my cheek. I realize that there is tremendous beauty in every part of the world, and subjects of great interest for the photographer.  All countries have their unique beauty marks and jaw dropping vistas. They were all sculpted by the same artist, after all.

But, as we like to say, if you live a good life, when that's over, you die and go to Oregon.

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) Oregon beauty creation photo photographer wonders https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/3/location-location-location Tue, 04 Mar 2014 01:59:01 GMT
Up Too Late https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/2/up-too-late User comments

 

 

 

You know it's time for bed when the autofocus mode of your eyeballs stops working.

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) eyes sleep tired work https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/2/up-too-late Thu, 20 Feb 2014 17:50:58 GMT
Magical Pictures of Growing Up on a Farm https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/1/magical-pictures-of-growing-up-on-a-farm She has had a camera for only two years, but Elena Shumilova has been able to produce some wonderful pictures of her two boys and their animals on their farm in Russia.  Knowing that the awes and mysteries of childhood are fleeting, this mom was determined not to let those moments fade.  She has preserved for herself the magic of her children growing up, and has allowed us to enter in and share in the beauty of that precious time. 

Click on the picture to read the whole story.

Russian Mother Takes Magical Pictures of Her Two Kids With Animals On Her Farm

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) animals farm parenting photography https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/1/magical-pictures-of-growing-up-on-a-farm Thu, 16 Jan 2014 18:28:29 GMT
Meandering Luck -- Part 2 of 2 https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/1/meandering-luck----part-2 This installment is the second of two parts. Part one may be viewed here.

 

There, at the intersection of Saratoga Road and Howell Prairie Road, directly in front of me, lay a good sized pond with a few young trees lining its bank. The sun was low in the sky and directly behind one of the largest trees, shooting its rays through the branches.  I had to pull over, in spite of the fact that I wanted to get to Brooks before the sun was down.

I walked across Howell Prairie road and approached the pond, walking up and down parallel to it to find an angle I liked.  I was too far away, and a rather wide and muddy drainage ditch separated me from the fence that was in the way of the picture I wanted.  If I could get on the other side of the ditch without falling on my face and getting covered in muck, I'd be able to lean on the fence to steady my shots. 

Finally, I found a somewhat drier spot in the ditch and gingerly stepped across. I was quit a distance from where I wanted to shoot, so I followed the fence line back.  I took several shots at different exposures and angles.  Shooting into the sun is always difficult. You know you're probably going to get lens flares or reflective spots, and the camera wants to underexpose because of the brightness of the sun, leaving your main subject dark.

I decided to take two approaches to editing this scene. One would be a single-shot, as sharp as I could get it, high contrast approach.  The other would be multiple exposures merged together for a softer, more of a "through-gauze" kind of view. You decide which you like the best.  Maybe even leave a comment to tell me why.

Trees and Pond
Sharp, high contrast
Trees and Pond
Soft, gauzy

 

I had to get a move on. The sun was getting lower and lower, and Brooks was still about 8 miles away.  Now, where was it that I crossed the ditch?

I didn't have much time left, so I drove down Howell Prairie Road without too much looking around for photo opportunities.  I remember my wife said that she saw the farm with the barn with Mt. Hood behind it along Highway 99-E.  She was fairly certain that it was south of Brooks where she had seen it.

By the time I reached Brooks, the sun was touching the horizon and the sky was pink and red.  At Highway 99-E I turned south.  If Tanya's memory was accurate, the farm should be on my left, so I drove and craned my neck, keeping Mt. Hood in view as much as possible, looking for that scene.  

I drove all the way down to the Lake Labish onion fields, but there was no sign of the barn with Mt. Hood behind it.   I decided to turn around and go north, retracing my path and perhaps seeing it from a better angle.  But by the time I got to Brooks without finding it, I had pretty much given up.  The sun had just dipped below the horizon, and light was beginning to fade.  I simply had nothing else to do but to drive home.  It was obvious I had missed my opportunity.

About a mile north of Brooks, to my right, with Mt. Hood in the distance, there it was: a farm, a barn, a pasture, and cows!  Okay! Park on the shoulder out of traffic, and let's see what we can do in the less than ideal light.

I grabbed my camera and jumped out of the car.  About 8 cows were grazing in the part of the pasture closest to me, closest to 99-E.  I just kept taking pictures as I slowly walked past them.   As I approached, they began to look a little skittish, and a few bolted to the other side of the pasture.  I knew if I could somehow keep them close I could compose a more interesting picture. But how?  How do you speak moo-talk?

Fortunately, one of the cows was more curious about me than afraid. She stood her ground by the fence and just watched me. As I walked, I was able to align the cow, the barn, and Mt. Hood for a pretty good shot.

The farm at sunset

After snapping this shot, she had had enough, and turned and walked off to join the rest of the herd.  Little by little they all made their way to congregate to the right of the barn. It was a hodge-podge of poses, and nothing I shot then impressed me as much as this one.

I drove home happy.  I was glad I was able to find the location my wife had in mind, and I was feeling good that I had grabbed a few good images elsewhere that day.

Such is the luck of meandering. 

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) Hood Mt. Oregon barn contrast farm pond soft sunset trees https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/1/meandering-luck----part-2 Mon, 13 Jan 2014 14:00:00 GMT
Meandering Luck -- Part 1 of 2 https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/1/meandering-luck----part-1-of-2 When out "light-stalking", I never know what I will discover. Some excursions result in very little that I can get excited about. Other times, the results can be quite good.  One never knows.

This day, I was out driving around Mt. Angel, Oregon.  I'm quite familiar with the area. The Catholic church in Mt Angel is one of the most picturesque in the area, and the Abbey offers some spectacular views.  But there are still a lot of small back roads that I had never explored.

The main highway between Mt. Angel and Silverton is busy and dotted with industrial and agricultural scenes.  I decided to turn off at Hook Road and head west to see where it would take me.  I wanted to get to Brooks in time for sunset, because my wife said she saw a farm with a barn and Mt. Hood in the background, and I would probably like to photograph it when the sky was glowing red as it sometimes does.

I drove on Hook Road for a couple of miles, looking for things that would catch my eye. Every now and again I'd twist around and look to see what was behind me.  You never can tell what appears behind you if you simply keep looking forward. Sometimes my most surprising shots come from when I just turn around.

I crossed over the Cline Bridge, which goes over the Pudding River, and merged onto Saratoga Road.  Just about a half-mile from the bridge I saw an old red barn off to the right, tucked away behind some trees. A plaque on the barn said "1887".  I pulled over, walked back to the drive way and saw this.

1867 Barn

It's not every day you run across a 127-year-old barn. I wanted to get closer, but there was a no trespassing sign.  I respect private property, so shooting from just this side of the sign was all I was willing to do.  Plus, there didn't appear to be anyone at home in the house a few more yards up the driveway, so I couldn't go up and ask permission. 

I had to be satisfied with what I could capture. Such is the luck of meandering.

I walked back to my car, head down, reviewing my shots, oblivious to my surroundings. Just as I reached the driver's door, I looked up.  It was better than the barn. 

Something wonderful is around the bend

The angle and glow of the sun, the curve in the road, the over-arching trees, they all came together just right.

I took several shots at different exposures and different focal lengths, and got back into the car, knowing I had something to work with.  

After I got back home and edited them, this is the one I selected as the best of the bunch.

 

Happy with my shots of the curve in the road, I continued on Saratoga Road for a few miles. It threaded itself through various farms and pastures, and finally terminated in its junction with Howell Prairie Road. I knew that taking a right on Howell Prairie would lead me back to Brooks, and I knew that the sun wasn't going to wait for me.  It was getting pretty low in the sky.  But right in front of me was a sight I couldn't resist.

 

More to come in part 2.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) Angel Mt. Oregon Silverton barn country countryside farm pasture road https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/1/meandering-luck----part-1-of-2 Sat, 11 Jan 2014 21:19:50 GMT
Just Shoot Me Now https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/1/just-shoot-me-now These have got to be some of the most god-awful attempts at portraiture ever perpetrated upon unsuspecting clients.  And they're hilarious!  Click on the picture to see more.

Hey, men! Have you ever wanted the power to hypnotize women to do whatever you want?

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) amateur bad photography portrait tasteless what were you thinking wrong https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/1/just-shoot-me-now Mon, 06 Jan 2014 18:02:04 GMT
Sunset on Champoeg Creek https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/1/sunset-on-champoeg-creek I knew the day was going to have a great sunset, so I headed off early to search for a good scene. I intended to try to get to the Willamette River near Newberg, but I soon realized I was running out of time. By the time I would have got there and scouted around the sun would be down and the light already faded.

Initially, in my rush, I drove past where Champoeg Creek crosses the St. Paul Hwy.  Then about a half mile down the road, I came to my senses and changed my mind. I turned the car around and drove back.  I parked about an eighth of a mile away, and walked to the creek and waited. I'm glad I did.

Here, the sun is just touching the ridge above Champoeg Creek, with its rays shining through the trees. The creek itself was like glass and reflected the sky and clouds perfectly.  How could you ask for a better shot?

I decided to use HDR to capture the scene, so I set my camera to bracket my shots by two f-stops. One picture is underexposed by two stops, one is overexposed by two stops, and one is right in the middle.  In situations like this, where there is such a wide difference in darks and lights, shadows and sun, I think my decision was the correct one.

This picture, taken a few minutes after the sun went behind the ridge, also HDR, captures the symmetry of the trees and their reflections. I almost titled it "God's Rorschach Test". 

These are available in the Landscapes/Water or Plants/Trees galleries.

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) Champoeg Oregon St.Paul clouds creek sunset trees water https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2014/1/sunset-on-champoeg-creek Sat, 04 Jan 2014 19:03:42 GMT
Whistler, BC, in Miniature https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2013/12/whistler-bc-in-miniature A tiltshift lens can make things appear to be miniatures of themselves. Here's a fabulous video of the ski resort at Whistler, BC, that looks like it lives in a snow globe.  

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) Whistler resort shift ski tilt tilt-shift tiltshift video https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2013/12/whistler-bc-in-miniature Thu, 26 Dec 2013 23:06:52 GMT
A Million Images Placed into the Public Domain https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2013/12/a-million-images-placed-into-the-public-domain This is amazing:

The British Library Puts 1,000,000 Images into the Public Domain, Making Them Free to Reuse & Remix

 

 

 

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) British domain images library million public https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2013/12/a-million-images-placed-into-the-public-domain Sat, 14 Dec 2013 18:54:44 GMT
I Shoot Wet People https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2013/8/i-shoot-wet-people Sometimes, you only have to just sit there, and your subjects will come to you.

Portland, Oregon, has many fountains that are favorites of its citizens to use when they need to cool off during hot summer days. This day, I sat myself down at the Salmon Street Springs fountain to see what I could see.  My wife and I were a little early for our Portland Spirit cruise down the Willamette River and had about an hour to kill.  So, I thought what better way to kill and hour than doing a little photography? And here you see me as my wife saw me, watching and shooting the people who came to play in the fountain.

Shooting at the Salmon Springs fountain.Take a seat. They eventually come to you.

 

Of course, on a hot summer's day, it would be almost impossible to keep the children away.  This little fellow caught my eye right away. He was so unassuming and into the moment, enjoying the fanciful thoughts his imagination drew in his mind, playing with the water.

A boy and his fountain.Feel the coolness and let the water flow.

 

And then, there were the adults, cooling down and enjoying the water, just like the kids.  This fellow was walking around and around in the spray, getting totally soaked. Apparently, he was so water-logged that he had trouble keeping his pants up. Or, maybe that was just the way he normally dressed. You can never tell these days.

Man soakingWardrobe malfunction in the fountain.

 

In any case, the summer is a great time to just sit and watch and shoot.  Find a cool spot on a hot day with a nearby source of water, and the pictures will come to you without too much effort on your part.

 

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gshubin@45thphoto.com (45th Parallel Photography) city cooloff fountain hot people spray summer water wet https://www.45thphoto.com/blog/2013/8/i-shoot-wet-people Sat, 31 Aug 2013 01:25:00 GMT