Canon Powershot ELPH 320 HS, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography

Fun at the Game

When I went to to Blues hockey game over the weekend, I knew that the theme at Where’s My Backpack? is yellow this week.  The St. Louis Blues colors are blue and yellow, so I thought maybe I would have some fun with that.  Here is a photo that I cam up with:

ISO 800 4mm 0ev f/2.7 1/50

ISO 800 4mm 0ev f/2.7 1/50

I took this photo with my point and shoot when Louie dropped by our section.  I had set the camera to color accent, with yellow as the chosen accent color.  When I got home I edited this in Photoshop.  I went to Filter-Blur-Iris Blur.  When you are using that filter you can pick what you want in focus and then blur the rest as much as you would like.

Just a quick snapshot of a fun weekend outing, but what do you think of my editing? Feel free to leave a comment below.

Cheers!

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Canon Powershot ELPH 320 HS, Photo Challenges, Photography

So What Does That Say About Me?

I spend a lot of time watching hockey.  Yesterday it was two live games.  One featuring my hockey child and one NHL game.  At the level my hockey child plays, there is no fighting.  The NHL is a different story, here is a shot from yesterday’s game:

ISO 500 22mm 0ev f/5.9 1/100

ISO 500 22mm 0ev f/5.9 1/100

I shot this photo using my point and shoot and then left it unedited, just a snapshot from a game.

I love watching hockey, and I don’t mind a good fight that works with the flow of the game.  I’m not a fan of fighting that breaks up the flow of the game.  How complicated of me. Allowing fighting in games is a hot topic of discussion among fans, and I have to say if they got rid of it in the NHL, I would still watch.

But what does it say about me that I think fighting can be a good part of the game? Something for me to think about as I write this post in response to the WordPress Photo Challenge, “Selfie”.

Have a thought about this post? feel free to leave a comment below, but no need to drop the gloves, this a “no fighting” blog.

Cheers!

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50mm Lens, Canon 50D, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography

Weekly Photo Challenge: Family

Here is a photo of a family I am part of:

ISO 2500 50mm 0ev f/5.6 1/100

ISO 2500 50mm 0ev f/5.6 1/100

Like a lot of families, my hockey family has its ups and downs.  This shot I took to include my extended family, that is the folks who are with the opposing team.  While we might not all agree on things for the hour that the game is on, we are all part of the bigger hockey family.

This photo was a bit hard to get properly because I had my camera set to take photos on the ice which is very different lighting than the stands.  I wrote recently about how I set up for photos like that.  So, I took this shot knowing that it would be too dark and the white balance would be off, but because I wanted to get this quick shot and then get back to shooting the game, I left my settings where they were.

Now, a few days later, I opened the photo in Photoshop.  Because I shot this photo in RAW, I first edited it in Camera Raw.  I used the eye dropper to make a white balance adjustment, I also increased the exposure, lightened both the blacks and shadows, and increased the clarity.  Then I opened that version in Photoshop.  From there I did a levels adjustment, cropped the photo, and sharpened it.  So, I made several adjustments from the original, which I will show below, but like I said, I knew what I was in for when I took the photo.

ISO 2500 50mm 0ev f/5.6 1/100

ISO 2500 50mm 0ev f/5.6 1/100

So, that is my hockey family, you can see they are a bit preoccupied at the moment.  What do you think of my edits?

Cheers!

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50mm Lens, Canon 50D, Childhood, Parenting, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography

Who is Luckier?

So, who is luckier?, the kid who gets to play hockey or the parents who get to watch?

ISO 2500 50mm 0ev f/7.1 1/250

ISO 2500 50mm 0ev f/7.1 1/250

It’s a toss up I would say.

This photo I took at a game this morning.  I’ll show you the original in a moment.  When I take hockey photos, I always start with the white balance on Auto and take a photo of the rink.  Then I use that photo to set the Custom white balance in the camera.  That works in helping set the white balance correctly.  Given the conditions of the rink, I always have a high ISO and fast shutter speed.

When I get the photos on my computer, I open up Photoshop.  I shoot in RAW, so first I open the photo in Camera Raw and do a white balance adjustment.  Then I open the photo into Photoshop and do any cropping that I want.  Sometimes I also do a levels adjustment, although on this photo I did not.  Then I sharpen the photo.  From there I convert my RAW photo to a JPEG.  I make it into a JPEG because that makes it easier to share with other parents on the team.

Here is the original:

ISO 2500 50mm 0ev f/7.1 1/250

ISO 2500 50mm 0ev f/7.1 1/250

So, what do you think? who is luckier? What do you think of my adjustments and workflow?

Written in response to the Daily Post prompt: The Luckiest People

Cheers!

 

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50mm Lens, Canon 50D, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography

Window on my Weekend

The theme for this week’s WordPress photo challenge is window.  I spent the weekend at the hockey rink.  My little hockey player had a series of out of town games, so three games in less than 24 hours.  If you play hockey you know that is a lot of ice time.  I watch and take photos from behind the glass.  It look a little while for it to occur to me that I could create a photo that would fit this challenge while I was at the rink.  So here is the scoreboard midway through the third game:

ISO 2500 50mm 0ev f/5.6 1/320

ISO 2500 50mm 0ev f/5.6 1/320

Ouch, not a good game for the home team, we would end up winning 11-4, which is not a typical score in hockey.  My little hockey player’s team won all three games, which is nice, but the first two games were actually more interesting in terms of actual hockey and the scores were a bit closer.

This photo above is a panorama.  I created it out of three photos in Photoshop.  From where I was standing it was not possible to get the whole scoreboard in the frame. So, I shot three separate frames, making sure to have enough overlap so that Photoshop would be able to piece them together.  In Photoshop I went to File-Automate-Photomerge and just used the presets to create the image.  From there I cropped and straightened the photo.  Looking at it now, I think it could have used a white balance correction.

This is week two of the Weekly Photo Challenge for this year.  Last week I was reading the entry for “Beginning” by Cardinal Guzman, and he had created widgets to use that would allow a blogger to collect photo challenge posts all in one place.  The link I provided will take you to see his creations, one of which I am using in the right hand column of my blog. I would like to thank him for sharing and encourage you to visit his blog if you are interested.

So what do you think of my panorama? Are you a hockey fan?  If you have never seen a game I would encourage you to give it a try.  Check your local rink for a free game!

Cheers!

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50mm Lens, Canon 50D, Childhood, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography

Weekly Photo Challenge: Community

A group of children wait for their shift during a hockey game at a community ice rink:

ISO 3200 50mm 0ev f/5.6 1/100

ISO 3200 50mm 0ev f/5.6 1/100

Taking hockey photos can be a challenge.  In this case, there is a bit of a twist because it was also outdoors at night.  In order to get this photo I had to bump up my ISO to allow for a quick shutter speed to capture the movement of the game.  Also, I had to wear several layers of clothing, because it was cold!  Other than some cropping and sharpening this photo is as it was out of the camera.

Recreation centers provide a lot to the local community.  They can mean different things to different people.  This center for example, has swim lessons, but to my family it is one of the local hockey rinks.  The photo challenge this week at WordPress is community and it is interesting to see all the different ways people think about community. Another community that I am part of is this blogging community. I appreciate my readers and enjoy talking to people who leave comments or whose blogs I visit.  A few days ago I wrote about a change I made to my blog and about changing my theme.  If you would like to take a look and leave a comment about my changes, the post is here.

How about you? Do you use a local recreation center? have you ever watched a youth hockey game? they are a lot of fun, so you should consider dropping by if you never have.  Feel free to leave a comment below.

Cheers!

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Animals, Birds, Canon 50D, Nature, Photo Editing, Photography

Thinking about White Balance Settings

Having a strategy regarding how you use your white balance settings in your camera can be a good way to insure that you get the photo you want later.  Many, but not all, cameras give you options, and being aware of when to take advantage of those options can save you some time in your post editing process.  I think it is worth the time to look through the manual of your camera and think about how you might use the different settings.  Today, I am going to talk about the two options I use most frequently, auto and custom.

Here is my defense of auto white balance, and when I say defense I say that because almost every photographer is made to feel like using an auto version of anything on their camera makes them less of a “real” photographer.  So, here it goes, my auto white balance setting works pretty well.  That’s the short version.  The longer version is that pretty much any photo I am taking for my artistic work I am going to at least consider changing the white balance in my post editing process.  Auto tends to give me a good solid starting point.  This photo was taken with the white balance set to auto:

ISO 400 160mm 0ev f/5.6 1/400

ISO 400 160mm 0ev f/5.6 1/400

Custom white balance is a setting I use all the time when I am taking photos inside ice arenas.  I spend a lot of time shooting hockey games.  When I started using custom white balance in those situations, I used a grey card.  I would prop it up on the side of the glass and take a photo of it.  My camera then allows me to choose that photo and use it to set the white balance setting of other photos from it.  That worked pretty well.  Then it was suggested to me that I try and shoot a photo of the ice and use that photo as a base for my white balance settings.  I like the way that works, here is an example:

ISO 2500 0ev f/1.8 1/2000

ISO 2500 0ev f/1.8 1/2000

This isn’t such a great photograph, but you can see detail in both the white and blacks of the uniform, and that is because the white balance here is set pretty well.  If you have ever shot in a hockey arena, you know the lighting is horrible and that getting a good exposure can be pretty tough.  Having your white balance set properly is a step in the right direction.

How about you? do you have a white balance setting you use frequently? maybe you don’t consider white balance at all?  Feel free to leave a comment below, and if you have written a blog post about it, feel free to leave a link.

Cheers!

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