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

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:

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US Air Force cadets Running in Unison

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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.

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The Tip-Toer

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US Army Gentlemen

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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

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

swearing

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:

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09_by_dechobek

’09 – dechobek, deviantART

Blink with meaning,

Ceasar Jones

That Hook

It’s amusing how quickly things that seemed uninteresting to you before just become the only thing you Google about these days. In my case, it was photography (especially portraiture) that piqued my interest. I figured, if I’m going to be wasting time on the Internet, I might as well actually learn something about a small part of the large world known as photography.

After looking at some iconic or powerful images from certain photographers, I as an photography enthusiast (a dude with no equipment to fuel his new-found interest), have always wondered what made them stood out as opposed to many countless digital photos taken today by various aspiring photographers or the annoying Instagram users. We’ll look at some examples:

Human Emotion and Contrast

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The Afghan Girl – Steven McCurry, National Geographic

Humans are simply an amazing species. We can do so many things, including expressing ourselves without having to say a single word. At first glance, Sharbat’s intense eyes are absolutely soul-piercing. Even though a passerby might not know the back story, the eyes still captivate them. The overall serious expression on Sharbat signifies that something is bothering her and she wants something to be done about it. In addition to the emotions portrayed by her, the clothes of choice fit the picture because the red fabric wrapped around her face is in contrast with her sea-green eyes, making the photo even more powerful.

Patterns:

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West County Camera Flickr

Humans are absolutely captivated by patterns, whether they notice it or not. We have an odd fascination with things that repeat themselves, especially in a continuously changing scene: Nature. Most of the time things go unnoticed because most of the time patterns are formed at the macro level of things. When pictures are taken at the macro level, things that seemed irrelevant (because we didn’t care enough to inspect every little thing we come across daily), now come to life and that is when we can recognize the true beauty of nature.

Perception and Surrealism:

Rainbow computer

Connect, I Must Be Dead, DeviantArt

In today’s society, we are trained to suppress our true emotions and conform to the norms that a large portion of the population has come to a general consensus on. As a result, we are afraid to be publicly creative or spontaneous due to the possibility of rejection. This causes for a lot of people to think inside the box. Those that are creative and natural artists are the ones that bring fresh perspectives to photography and more importantly, our eyes. Sure, some photos might be a bit outward, but they still have a meaning that is left to the viewer to decipher and come to a conclusion about.

These are only some of the steps involved in making our eyes focus on a certain picture that might evoke certain emotions. Like many other forms of art, photography is simply an outlet for us to capture memories, express our creativity, and for some to make a profit. For me, it is a way for us to truly study the different elements within a photo, especially with humans. Their faces are so capable of creating many different expressions but its tough to capture them all in real time. Anyway, enough jabbering from me for now.

Blink with meaning,

Ceasar Jones