I was so much thrilled when Laura said that she is a ballerina and would like to do a shoot. I had all these ideas popping up in my head about this shoot and doing it indoors seemed to be the right answer. As much as i wanted to do this shoot outdoors, I did makeup my mind to do this indoors finally.
Despite the hardwood floor to dance and so many other factors to distract her(including me., with the light setup..!), Laura was so patient throughout the shoot to get these shots done.
Lights: 2 Canon 580 EX II + WestCott 43″ Octagonal Apollo Orb. The WestCott Octagonal Apollo is big, it’s beautiful, the light is deeee-licious. As you can see below, nice soft shadows. It also doubles as a very efficient bounce umbrella for more of a fashion, glamour look. It is compact and folds down.
Let me start by saying this… I have never been inside a Church or a chapel till now in my life. Did i want to be in one.. Sure. Whenever i see pictures of the interiors of Churches and Chapels around the world, I did want to go in there to capture its interior architectural beauty. But again, I had a whole lot of questions in my mind… First and foremost, “Am I in even allowed in there?” Lets face it, being from a country(should say religion) with strong beliefs on deities and extreme regulations inside temples..hmmm..not a surprise. When i started doing my homework to find answers, I quickly came to know that as far as i’m not trying yo do the obvious things that might bring trouble (I’m not gonna list those here, you know what i mean!) i’m going to be fine inside a church/chapel.
Now, the next big question… Will they allow me to bring my camera inside and if possible let me put my tripod inside without breaking any safety code. Because tripods are really frowned upon nowdays in most places where crowds gather in closed places. I guess, i do understand why. Anyway, when i started talking to an acquaintance about finding a chapel to take pictures in without putting myself into lot of trouble, I was recommended with the Rockfeller Chapel in the UIC campus to start with. The staff in here is super friendly. They did mention that they don’t much care as far as i stayed in the un-restricted spaces inside the chapel. This place was so quite..I mean, real quite… If i would have payed a little more attention, I would’ve heared myself blink.
I did carry light for this shoot. 2 camera bodies and one lens. And here are the pictures below. I’ll let them speak for itself.
Gear Used: Canon 5D Mark II, Canon T2i. Canon 16-35mm f2.8 II.
When i posted my time-lapse video project of my Smoky mountains trip in my previous post, I was overwhelmed with queries about the video. When i wrote the blog all i had in my mind was, not to add a load of technical details but guess i was wrong. I did reply personally to all queries, so i hope i don’t have to go back n edit my previous post…
Anyway, Another primary concern from my readers was… “Where are the pictures from your trip?” well… As i told in my previous post., most of my time was spent on shooting the time-lapse project but that was really advantageous at some level. When i had my camera set for shooting on my dolly, i had time to go grab my other camera body and walk around(in the vicinity of-course..duh!) to frame my other shots.
To begin with, I carried three camera bodies when i hiked. Canon T2i, Canon 5D2 & Canon 5D3. Three of my favorite lenses, Canon 16-35mm f2.8L II, Canon 14mm f2.8L II(ooooh.. yeah..), Canon EF 70-200mm f2.8L IS II. And my Lee filter set with the holders. These in my camera bag. Manfrotto 055CXPRO3 + MH054M0-Q5 054 Magnesium Ball Head, Kessler PD with all terrain legs in my tripod bag. And a second backpack with nourishment for me and 12v battery for the Kessler PD’s motion control system. Ouch! Ouch! My back hurts…
Another thing that i forgot to mention is my wading suit… oh yeah… it was fun to wade. And most of the pictures below wouldn’t have been possible without that.
Here are the pictures.,
I set my tripod in knee deep water to capture this shot.
This was shot pretty late in the evening around 8pm. Yeah..It was this bright.. I waited for the sun to set and give me this even light.
This one was shot quite early.. more like 6 in the morning…
This little guy kept staring at me from the moment i started setting up my time-lapse shot. He was way too patient till i mounted my 100mm f2.8L macro to my camera and captured this shot… well after that, he jumped on the lens to scare the hell outa me..
Who wants to live in this lill house.. I know i do…. This is one my favorite spot from this trip. I had to wade till i reached the middle of the stream to setup my tripod and click this shot.
This is from the famous Cades Cove at the Great Smoky Mountains. I can never get enough of this specific place. It’s an amazing place that i could probably spend a week and wouldn’t have still be done with it.
When I visited the Smoky Mountains the first time, I knew I was going back there again. Last time i was there for fall season and I wanted to be there during spring. What other time better than the Memorial Day weekend.
Voila! Road trip… Because, I knew I won’t able to reach there by air with the amount of gear I was carrying.
My main objective was to shoot this time-lapse but my only concern was the time frame. I only had 4 days to scout and shoot. With the previous experience I had with this place, I used Google maps to figure out the GPS co-ordinates of the spots I had in mind and I was on my way to scout spots. I looked for different patterns in water flow while scouting for locations and later went back and setup the shot.
Anyone who shoots Time-lapse will probably agree with me. This is where Murphy’s Law works perfectly without a glitch. I can state several instances of these experiences I had through this trip.
On the second day, I had my time-lapse setup on an isolated creek with a pretty pattern of water falling over the rock. The whole 40 minutes time-lapse sequence was about to be complete in another 15 more minutes, that’s when a family of 4 stopped near me to enjoy the scenery and the little girl in the family was playing with her brother and bumped into my dolly and not much to say here. She was too cute to get mad at. And I did end-up shooting the whole thing again (It’s the one that starts at 00:25 in the video).
Here comes the best part on my trip’s third day, I hiked 4 miles with all my gear and reached a gorgeous waterfall named Ramseys cascades. Setup my Pocket Dolly for the time-lapse to kick-in, well only to realize the red indicator light wasn’t ON. Hmmm… It took me a minute to realize the fuse was blown in the adapter which connects the 12v battery to the motion controller. Aah…ha… I do prepare for situations like this and that’s why I carry spare fuses in my backup bag. And guess where it is…? Is in my car 4miles away…. Grrr…
Well, again… having experiences like these is a part of having fun with photography.
For the shots at 01:31 and 01:41, I had to wade in hip deep water with my dolly and camera gear to capture those pretty patterns.
Overall, it was a great trip and I didn’t have the heart the leave the place but I had to.
Gear Used: Canon T2i, Canon 5D Mark II, Canon 16-35mm f2.8 II, Kessler Pocket Dolly with Basic controller. Software Used: Adobe After Effects CS6, Adobe Premiere Pro CS6, Adobe Bridge CS6
1700 Miles driving, 20+ miles hiking and 14000 RAW images later, Here is the video..
Here is the video i put together that i shot with my 5D Mark III. As i mentioned in my previous blog on my Michigan trip, the Mark III blew my mind off in every aspect – DSLR video was no exception.
Again, The electronic-level is one of the best features. Very handy while shooting, takes out the guess work while working with horizons. If you haven’t read the ISO comparison test on the rest other million blogs, ISO noise is barely noticebale even at ISO-12800. Moiré, which was one of the most annoying issue for video-graphers on 5D-MII has been taken care of in Mark III. Although not having a Clean HDMI out is a disappointment for sure.
Gear Used: Canon 5D Mark III, Canon16-35mm f2.8 II, Canon 70-200mm f2.8 II, Kessler Pocket Dolly.
Well, that’s enough i guess. And now here comes my story-telling part.. why… because.. I Can.. I know, what’s the fun in saying that. But when i put together the video and the BG music came along, i thought ‘what if i put a prelude for this video’. and voila..
Read the rest of this imagining that it’s being narrated by Alec Baldwin.,
They came by air in what some of us always thought were secret military experiments and urban legends but they did exist – UFOs. NORAD and SETI servers were clocking off charts, trying to understand their communication language. They didn’t park their flying ships right above our cities, instead above most of our mountain ranges. Those Mountains, we used to climb and hike were their ships they were using to camp amongst us till now. So, Earth wasn’t new to them.
They also came from underneath the waters of our world. We did have our guns and missiles ready, though most of us were busy on social networks trying to figure out how to say ‘welcome’ or ‘take me with you’ in their language. Even if we could have figured that out, it wouldn’t have mattered much. Because little did we know, they were on a mission to wipe us out from the face of our home which was known to us as the Planet Earth. They didn’t send rolling balls of fire, they didn’t send 18-legged tall monsters to suck cities in either. Instead they sent microbes that turned our own to kill n consume us. The microbes made us Cannibals, all they had to do is to watch us eat our own kind. I’m one of the last few hundreds left behind with no trust on my own species. Our beaches were always crowded with families and screaming children on nice summer days, the trees used to start being green when spring starts and none of these happen anymore. The world as we knew it, isn’t the same anymore… Here is my video log of survival day # 831