Incredibly Dense Fog!

Hello everybody! As the title says, it was an ominously foggy day! In Colorado, we do not get fog that often and when we do, it usually lasts for an hour or so before dissipating. Today was a special case. The fog was there when I woke up at 8 AM and lasted well into the night! I tried to take advantage of that by walking around my neighborhood and taking pictures with the Canon 6D and Sigma 35mm f/1.4 combination. With these photos below, I thought I was able to show you all just how unique this day (and night) has been! Enjoy!

PSA: you can click on the images for their native resolution sizes.

Foggy Road


Foggy Tree v3


Blink with meaning,

Ceasar Jones


First Post with the Canon 6D

Hello all! It’s been WAY too long since I’ve made a blog post. Sorry guys, life got in the way! 😛 Well… that and I didn’t have my own DSLR to keep shooting and posting on here for you guys. Well, that’s no more! I’ve finally gotten my own Canon 6D with the 50mm f/1.4 lens.

It’s been tough re-learning all the tools that your generic DSLR offers, such as the aperture, ISO, white balance, etc. I’m working towards getting the lens to be micro-adjusted for the Canon 6D so that the focus can be tack-sharp. It has been three days since I have owned this camera and I’m still learning many new things about it. That’s just fine with me because this is such an enjoyable hobby!

Within the next week or so, I’ll be playing with the famed Brenzier Method! Stay tuned.

It’s been a blast so far, I’m just shooting everything I see (ha ha) and picking out the best to edit in Lightroom 5. The results are what you see below. Enjoy!

Shadow, my cat!

Shadow, my cat!

Great Plains of Colorado

Great Plains of Colorado

Canon T70

Canon T70

A random plant in my backyard

A random plant in my backyard

Random plant in my back yard

Random plant in my back yard

John and his daughter, Jolie.

John and his daughter, Jolie.

Blink with meaning,

Ceasar Jones

My First Shoot!

The recent weekend was a very exciting experience for me! I shot the Freezefest 5K race, basketball/hockey game, and now I was able to take charge of my own photo shoot at my apartment. This was a nerve-wracking yet an entertaining experience!

On February 3, a Sunday, the Freezefest 5K was happening, my friends and I had to take care of off-campus errands before 2, when the photo shoot was supposed to happen. I decided to buy a black queen-sized flat sheet to act as the background in my photos. I did not account for the time it took the sheet to de-wrinkle in the dryer! The photo shoot ended up being postponed until 3 PM and my models were anxious to go somewhere by 4 PM. I did not even do a test shoot!  While the sheet was drying, I took advantage of the down time I had to set up the light stand for the softbox in a loop light pattern on the subject’s right side. I went to get the sheet from the dryer, and on the way I met my subjects, which made me embarrassed because even though I am a novice photographer, I still do not like wasting people’s time by not being prepared before they showed up.

I still grabbed the sheet and chatted with the models on the way back to my apartment. I set up the black backdrop with a tall friend (thanks mate) and did a very quick test shoot. I used Dylan’s Canon 7D body paired with the 70-200mm f/2.8L lens. The 580EX II flash worked wonderfully, the chair had to be pushed closer to the camera so that the background wouldn’t be so obvious, and the rest of the subjects arrived. Three men and one women. I had them do a series of shoots, but I found that the straight-on approach offered the best results in a single light situation. I learned later that for less harsh shadows, the softbox should be closer to the subject’s face.

In a single lighting situation:


Test Subject 1


Test Subject 2

It was then realized the pictures seemed dull and the subject’s hair was embedded into the background. Dylan Heuer suggested the use of a rim light. The rest is history because the subjects now stood out and looked great in the process!


Dylan Heuer


Test Subject 3 Rim Light


Test Subject 1 Rim Light

I found that even though the shoot got off to a rocky start, things started to pick up because the subjects were comfortable with me and I was able to entertain and keep them smiling throughout the shoot. It showed through the pictures, I think. They actually want to come back for some more Facebook pictures, which I more than welcomed them to. For my first ever shoot, I would have to call it a smashing success.

Blink with meaning,

Ceasar Jones

Freezefest 5K

The last time I wrote, I chatted about my experiences at the women’s basketball game and the hockey game for men as a photographer. For this blog, I’m going to chat about my interesting experiences as a photojournalist. A roommate was supposed to participate in the annual 5K run known as the Freezefest 5K. It is when students, faculty and staff get together to run during the bitter cold winter in Henrietta, NY. Turns out, my roommate overslept. Oh well. Dylan and I still went out to shoot. This was the first time he actually allowed me to shoot the whole thing because he wasn’t getting paid to shoot the race.

I went out there with the Canon 7D paired with a 70-200mm f/2.8L lens. I shot everyone (not literally… well, wait…)! I began with the start of the race, as can be seen below:


US Air Force cadets Running in Unison


One of the Top Participants

Reindeer in Camo!

Reindeer in Camo!

Some of the things I struggled with were the auto focus and perception. I kept thinking I could press the AF button once and then shoot  as the runners were running past me. I realized that the AF worked only at the fixed distance from the lens and that it does not change magically when the runner goes further away or closer to you. Oof, the pains of a growing photographer. I also shot the end of the race, where everyone was either prancing, limping, or vomiting their way to a personal victory.


The Tip-Toer


US Army Gentlemen


The Mysterious Prancer

I had a very good time shooting all the different subjects while their bodies endured the very cold day. The variety in facial expressions, body language, and uhh, masks kept me shooting.

Blink with meaning,

Ceasar Jones

An Attempt

Hello all! It’s been a while since I have written anything, but it is because I have been up to some fun stuff. I asked my friend, Dylan Heuer, a professional sports photographer if I could borrow his photography equipment so I could gain some insight into the hobby I intend to become involved with after graduation. He did me one better. He took me to an annual 5K run on campus called the Freezefest 5K run, a basketball/hockey game, and allowed me to use his own equipment for my own photo shoot. These experiences will be split into three different blog posts, so let us begin with the basketball/hockey game on February 1, 2013.

When I parked my bike and went up to the doors that led to the Clark Gymnasium at RIT, I was momentarily overwhelmed with strobe lights going off during the women’s basketball game versus the Skidmore thoroughbreds. I went through the memory banks and realized that I had never seen the permanently installed strobe lights inside the gym. I looked for and found Heuer, who was busy taking shots of the heated game between the two teams. He was excited about the 6 overhead strobes because prior to his knowledge of the lighting system inside the gym, his photos always had a noticeable amount of noise, and to any photographer, unless intended, that is frustrating. We then shot the entire game with a Canon 7D body paired with either a 70-200mm f/2.8L or 16-35mm f/2.8L lens. I do not have any photos shot by me that I can show, but I do have a few of Dylan’s, as can be seen below:

Kara Wheeler

#22, Kara Wheeler

Leslie Havens

#5 Leslie Havens Driving to the net


#22 Kara Wheeler Attempting a Layup

The strobes can be seen going off in sync with the camera. There were two obvious challenges, though. The strobes, once they go off, need to be given time to recover the power lost by flashing. When this happens and there are multiple photographers covering the event, the strobes will not go off immediately after someone who has access, uses it. For instance, if a photographer takes her shot and then Heuer attempts to take one of his own right after, his photo will be dark while the girl will have a perfectly lit photo. This caused Dylan to miss some decent shots.

Another issue with strobes was that Dylan could not spam the shutter button because that would just cause the strobes to become an unnecessary distraction to the players. He had to be selective with what shots he took. This took the level of mastery of sports photography to a whole new level. This is when he gained even more respect from me because he took some decent shots.

I actually put whatever photographic skills I had to use at this game. The things I found difficult were controlling the zoom and auto-focusing when the field was either running away or towards me. I had to spam the button repeatedly to get a shot that was actually in focus. That game was when I also realized I did not have the manly forearms required to hold up the heavy 70-200 lens. I nearly drowned in shame as my manhood was weighed down.

When the game wrapped up, the men’s hockey game was starting. It was RIT vs. Connecticut. Already tired from the basketball game, I was not prepared for the extremely FAST pace of a division I game… I have been to more than a few hockey games myself, but I have never once been at eye level with the players with a camera in hand. It was actually difficult for me to keep track of the puck since a lot of things were happening at once: the rowdy crowd, my lack of skill with the camera, and the fast paced game.

It was an excellent weekend of sports photography. I think I’m going to stick with portraiture photography, ha ha.

Blink with meaning,

Ceasar Jones

Street Shots

Whew! What a busy week it has been. Attending a private University using the quarter system does take its toll on you. Anyway, this week I was wondering about what genre of photography I would write about. Astro-photography? It takes too much to get a decent photo. Forensic photography? No, too graphic and morbid for you and I! Hm, what of street photography? Well, there are a lot of variables involved:  the environment, atmosphere, and my favorite subjects: people.

The environment is a critical aspect and sets the mood of the scene. Are you shooting inside a busy city such as N.Y.C. or at a run-down metropolis such as Detroit? Below is an example of the environment dominating the photograph:

streetRomanas Naryskin

Upon sight of the photograph, one can tell that it is a train yard that hit a day of rest since it is empty and a few drifters come and go with small adventures to share. The fog in the background adds to the ominous feeling of the empty train yard. There also is a silhouette in the mid-ground that adds to the mystery of the photograph. Whew, the hairs on my arms momentarily stood up!

As for the atmosphere, I am talking about the culture of a certain region that a photographer might decide to shoot in. Do the people mind at all if you took pictures of them from across the street? Are you surrounded by a culture that is very self-conscious and might cry out at you for taking pictures of them without their permission? Is there a turf war going on between two rival gangs that may be affecting the atmosphere negatively?

***This brings up another subject entirely: A photographer’s right to shoot the public. It should be known that the laws vary from place to place, especially from country to country. Every photographer should be aware of the Legal Handbook for Photographers by Bert P. Krages II.***

Here is a comparison between a friendly culture and a hostile one:

Hostility-005Hostility – Naterally Wicious, Flickr


Romanas Naryskin

The two men smiling at the camera above seem to be friendly, right? Well, they weren’t exactly happy with Romanas taking a photo of them. Before smiling, they were cursing at the photographer. Unfazed from experience, Romanas kept on shooting until he was satisfied and left the scene immediately.

That’s the amazing thing about humans. You could guess all day what they are thinking or showing in a photography and your conclusion would still be wrong. That’s the uniqueness of street photography, you never know what you are going to get and you are forced to interact with people, indirectly or directly. Here are two more pictures from NYC to complete the blog:



’09 – dechobek, deviantART

Blink with meaning,

Ceasar Jones

Black and White Photography

We see millions upon billions of colors; it’s difficult to distinguish them from the next shade of a specific color. The possibilities for discovering different colors are infinite. However, that can be overwhelming when viewing photos especially in the digital art age where there are many opportunities for anyone to take photos and play with the saturation/contrast slider in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom or with the already customized presets installed in the Instagram apps. The colors can also distract from the details within the picture.

Black and white photography began in the early 1800s with a device named the Camera Obscura. When color photographs was invented by a man named James Clerk-Maxwell, black and white photographs still remained popular because of the value it carried with each photograph. To this day, black and white photography still holds its ground against many genres of photography because of what it offers: nostalgia, attention to detail and versatility.

Nostalgia is a fantastic thing to experience and in the age of Information, we are absolutely stubborn when it comes to keeping in touch with the latest fads in technology or anything relevant to our interests. Digital photos are uploaded to the Internet every day and therefore lose any meaning the owner intended to get across to the viewer. With black and white photos, especially those done properly will cause the viewer to immediately relate to the photograph with a memory similar to the image.

ImageCandy Cigarette – Sally Mann

The image above immediately takes me back to the time when my brother was a young and rebellious 7-year old. I found him outside with his friend, “smoking” cigarette butts! Being the good older brother I was, I scolded him. His response: “so?” This picture brought a specific memory back almost immediately. Sally did her job as a photographer well.

As stated above, color sometimes takes away from the incredible quality and detail within a photo. Being an aspiring minimalist, I often am sensitive to the range of color used in photos. If the colors are too contrasted, I become turned off and move onto the next picture. With black and white photos, I seem to study each one of them for the details captured with a decent lens. I have noticed that the elderly are especially great objects to use for black and white photos. With such monotonous colors, the details effortlessly reveal themselves as can be seen below:

ImageSanta? – RaVN11

The mind-blowing details can be observed in the intricate but messy facial hair, the clogged pores on his nose and cheeks. His overall facial expression is obvious. I interpret this picture as a man in deep thought suddenly interrupted by an obnoxious photographer. It is a fascinating portrait regardless.

Black and white photography does not have to apply to only people, though. It can be applied to nature, architecture, sports, or even action photography. Black and white colors can make the lone pier seem to extend to infinity, a skyscraper more tall and intimidating, or it can cause an athlete to seem more dramatic or heroic during an intense moment in a match. This blog will end with some excellent examples:

ImageUntitled – Georg Sedlmeir

ImageChrysler Building – Dave


Muhammad Ali vs. Sonny Liston – Neil Leifer

Blink with meaning,

Ceasar Jones