Friday, August 20, 2010

(Day 232) Those lazy days of summer

I think everybody has their own definition of what makes for one of those unforgettable summer days - and that likely changes with age. I remember as a kid I could hardly wait for those final school days in June to be over - then the endless summer would begin! Warm days of going down to the creek, building a (rather leaky) dam with rocks that would raise the water from 2 feet to perhaps 3 feet deep, eating lunch outdoors, and some years even going on vacation for a week ! It seemed September and a return to school was eons away !

Now we're happy with a day when it doesn't rain and isn't too hot, and we can find a cool spot in the shade to dig into a book long neglected. Today was a day like that, minus the book part. Sasha was following me around to see if I was up to something interesting (she's the ONLY one who finds going on a photo shoot with me interesting - or at least she doesn't let on otherwise). It's been a while since she's made it on my blog, so I had her lie down and look interested (in case you're wondering what the command for that is, it goes like this - "Sasha, LOOK!", click). I deliberately underexposed a bit so she and the clouds would stand out a little more.

(10-22mm  f8  1/640 sec  ISO200)

36 comments:

becky said...

i love it! First of all, Sasha is beautiful- she looks like the kind of dog you just want to hug! The composition is also wonderful... and I love the sky of course. :)

Julia said...

I really like how you made Sasha and the clouds stand out! Very Nice!

Carolyn Ford said...

I like your underexposure trick...it worked like a charm! And, what a gorgeous pooch!

darlin said...

Stunning photo of such a beautiful dog! I also love that you underexposed this photo, it makes the whites stand right out. How do you underexpose a photo is my next question. No, I still haven't read my Rebel for Dummies book! lol I just keep on snapping away like I know what I'm doing but in essence I'm not sure how I get the photos I manage to get.... shhhh our little secret! :-)

Rick said...

@becky - thank you Becky; my wife says the dog gets more hugs than she does ;-)

Rick said...

@Julia - thank you Julia!

Rick said...

@Carolyn Ford - it's amazing the effects you can get with a little playing with the settings. Thanks Carolyn - I think she is too ;-)

Rick said...

@darlin - thank you Darlene !

Here's a real quick lesson:
- turn the dial on top to 'M' (manual)
- select an aperture - there's an 'Av' button on the back; press it and turn the wheel on top at the same time and you'll see the aperture change (e.g. to 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, 5.0 ... etc); if you want most of the shot in focus, select a larger number e.g. 8; to throw the background more out of focus, select a smaller number e.g. 3.5 or less if your lens allows
- next press the shutter halfway down and look at the scale in the viewfinder - it has a -2 on the left and +2 on the right; keep pressing the shutter halfway and rotate the dial - watch the little indicator on the scale move right or left, and watch the shutter speed changing
- when the indicator on the scale is right in the middle, you have a perfect exposure ( at least for the point you were focusing on)
- to underexpose, move the indicator to the left - each whole number gives you half as much light - you'll notice the shutter speed increasing e.g. from 1/20 sec to 1/30 sec - that means light is hitting the sensor for less time = darker
- now, stop procrastinating and start experimenting with those controls - you'll quickly move from theory to learning what happens as you change them. I suggest changing only 1 variable at a time and experimenting e.g. shutter speed. Once you know what that does then choose a different aperture and experiment some more. Oh - use the delete button once you understand how you created a photo you don't want to keep ;-)

This sounds about 10x harder than it really is (shhh - our secret).

darlin said...

Thanks Rick, I'm printing this out as I type and will practice. You make it all sound so much easier than the book does, maybe because you're talking my language and not dummy language! hehehe Psst... I know the delete part of this! lol And yup our little secret!

Barefoot from Heaven said...

Hi there Rick, wow it's good to be back. Man I'm still in a little german way of speaking and then dutch now I have to switch over to English...
I simply can't find the time (and being on this slow computer) to read all your wonderful post yet I'm scrolling trough all the pics and I must say over and over I hear myself say whooo aaahhhh, amazing once Rick.
Love the little wooden shoes. Still remember the good old days wearing them and sliding in wintertimes over the icy roads back and forth to school. My boys did were them for the fun of it in the backgarden at home.
Great you still have lots of good memories about Holland.
Love and hugs Dagmar
oh ps would you do me a favour and let me know the outcoming of the colours of my picture. In this one things are way to red (ha goes with my hair my hubby says from the background, yea right, he better watch it... Red has temper!!).
X Dag

CarreraCaballo said...

Oh WAAAHOOOWAWIWA - Amazing picture, reminds me of the technique Sports Illustrated use to photograph the athletes - Only the athlete here is a handsome dog :-)

Greetz,

Joseph

marty said...

sasha est magnifique, son poil doit être
doux à caresser ! il pose comme une star
avec ces nuages magnifiques qui annoncent
du vent, non ??
bisous Rick

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

Sasha is a good looking dog,but with all that hair,bet she is looking for a shady spot too.
Blessings,Ruth

Costea Andrea Mihai said...

grea dog! very beautiful one! regards

teca said...

Lovely... Sasha is so beautiful! Great shot!

Kisses, honey!

bonifer said...

Love the pic, Rick, the angle, the sky and of course that puppy-girl! I am a true animal lover, bet she can't wait until winter comes with that 'fur coat'..she is a beauty!

imac said...

She's a beauty and great shot too Rick.

Biana said...

Rick, aaaw.. Zo lief! Supermooie foto-buddy heb jij!! Heel mooie foto :)

Felmen Schinkel said...

My little brother Silvan loves your dog.
It's a larger version of our (grandparents') dog.

You get my respect for putting every day a new photograph on the internet.

Rick said...

@Barefoot from Heaven - Hi Dag - so nice to hear from you again (maybe I should say Guten Abend !). I'm a little behind in responding to comments because we drove about 1,000 km since Sat. evening to visit my 3 daughters and 2 granddaughters who live far from us - but it was worth the drive !

Thank you for taking the time to look at some of my posts - ik dacht dat je diegene over de klompen wel zou vinden. Daar heb ik nog echte fijne herinneringen van!

Hey - your photo looks fine - nice colours, and more! En pas op met dat slecht humeur ;-)

See you soon Dag!

Rick said...

@CarreraCaballo - thank you Joseph (maybe I can enter my dog in the SI swimsuit contest ? ;-)

Rick said...

@marty - thank you Marty - Sasha has 2 layers of fur - the top is coarse and covers the very soft fur underneath, which acts as insulation against the summer heat and winter cold: very good design ;-)

And the clouds did bring in the wind - which gave us a nice day!

Bisous marty!

Rick said...

@Ruth's Photo Blog - thank you Ruth! Yes, she's always in the shade on a sunny day, but her thick fur does give some protection from the heat. She'd much rather be in -20C temperatures though !

Rick said...

@Costea Andrea Mihai - thank you very much Costea !

Rick said...

@teca - thank you teca ! Beijos !!

Rick said...

@bonifer - thank you; she does love the winter - the colder, the better!

Rick said...

@imac - thank you mac, on both counts!

Rick said...

@Biana - wat kan ik anders zeggen als "dank je wel Biana!". Sasha is (natuurlijk) erg lief en komt (bijna) overal met ons mee.

Fijne week.

Rick said...

@Felmen Schinkel - hoi Felmen, bedankt hoor ! Geef de groeten aan Sylvan, en ook aan Dinant (en je ouders natuurlijk).

Every day I need to find a new subject and get out and make some shots - it's a challenge, but a nice one. I hope you're having a good summer before going back to school!

MedaM said...

This is absolutely fantastic photo. My words cannot describe how much I like it. And Sasha, she is simply adorable...

Rick said...

@MedaM - thank you for your nice comment Meda. Sasha gets a lot of attention - she's very gentle, but oh so stubborn !

Katherine said...

It is almost as though a little dog shape cloud dropped out of the sky and landed on your lush green lawn. Sasha is adorable and it would seem that she loves to be a photographic model for you too Rick..she has put on a lovely pose for you. This is a beautiful photo .. you're so clever!

Rick said...

@Katherine - LOL! Yes, she's a fluff ball alright! I had to be quick on the trigger to get this pose - normally she turns her head as I press the shutter release - my timing was good on this one.

Thanks Katherine !

Vera said...

Oh, wow! This dog is so sweet! I really really love the photo!

Rick said...

Thank you, Vera ! I think so too (but I'm a little biased ;-)

Lúcia said...

I'm sure Sasha was proud to be your model in this shot!
She is so lucky to have a good family. :)