I'm in one of those holding patterns today. I should be making the most of the day. As it is, I'm scheduled to fly to Phoenix tomorrow so I'm resting my arms. Ok, bad joke. Funny how the trip looms on our minds, though. It's like I'm drifting through today waiting for tomorrow. This Phoenix trip is crazy. I'll arrive tomorrow in the late afternoon. We have a regional meeting that starts at 7:15 AM Monday morning. By 12:30 I will be on a shuttle to the airport, arriving back in Portland late Monday afternoon. Last time we had one of these meetings we went to Orlando, Florida for a few days. This one's a condensed version. Sign of the times.
The timing for the trip isn't the best. My daughter is ready to pop any time. I talked with her this morning and she's in her own holding pattern. The meeting in Arizona is mandatory. I hate the conflict. The ending of the story is yet to be written.
In the meantime, I've been playing with the G11. The experts say we should only show our very best photos to others. That way it will boost everyone's opinion of our skill level. I guess I'm not too worried about that right now. The discovery process is still too young. It's been a lot of fun learning to see colors, light, patterns, and whatever in different ways. Learning how the camera controls work is only the very beginning. The "why" and "what", and "when" takes a lot of time and practice.
The good news is that experimenting with a camera is a lot safer than doing it on a bike. When we get a bad result with the camera, we merely hit the "delete" button. Riders should experiment on a bike, but carefully. It would be all too easy for us to be the one deleted. Not good.
One of the skills I'm working on is getting the proper white balance setting for the ambient lighting. Check out the photographer's term. Ambient. Am I getting skilled, or what? There are ways to sort of cheat the system and add some extra warmth to the scene. Sometimes the exactly correct setting makes the scene look colder. Interesting how that works, isn't it? Old stuff to some of you, new and fascinating to me!
Anyway, probably for my own gratification more than yours, I'm posting some photos taken around a mall. Malls make great places for roadies like me to catch up on business. There's enough background noise and activity so that we really don't disturb others while making phone calls, for instance. Food and restrooms are conveniently at hand. Those of us who like to "people watch" find plenty to keep us entertained.
So here's a few photos and some short comments.
I'm going to start buying apples instead of bananas. They should hold up better in a tank bag. Not to mention being useful for tailgaters! This is a store next to the mall. I cheated. Sorry.
Women's clothing is taking on a whole new fascination for me. The pastel colors are so appealing as photographic subjects. Even without actual women in them.
Store displays are starting to get my attention. It's a world of pattern and color I never really paid much mind to before.
This little dude is patiently waiting for his mother and trying to look cool. Check out the foot up on the tray of the stroller.
Even cool little dudes have their limits, it seems. "Hey, Mom, are we about done here? I'm going to start timing you on one of these calendars."
Another store display. Hey, somebody goes to the trouble to make it look nice. The least I can do is to take a picture of it. The shutter speed was a bit slower than I could hold perfectly still, it seems. I didn't notice it until now, but the colors are still neat.
I would have liked to hear what was actually being said. Although probably not on the receiving end. Things look a bit "venomous". She wasn't aware that her picture was being taken. That's a great advantage of the Canon's swivel screen. I can set the G11 down on a table and flip the screen so that I can see it. With a little shimming up or down, and being able to operate without a flash, it's easy to reach over and discreetly push the shutter button. Hmmm, do I see a career as a private investigator coming up? I don't care what they say, though, I'm not looking in bedroom windows. I'll hire an assistant nicknamed Reep for that!
I threw this in because it's my daughter's favorite store. That's a lot of yellow! If I had used the corresponding white balance adjustment, the whole yellow glow would have been lost. So I fudged a bit.
I'm playing with framing and composition. I like milk, too! Anyway, I thought it was kind of neat how the framing draws your eye to the milk display. Especially the grocery rows on the right. The lighting in the cooler adds a bit of a prize for getting to the subject. Not a great photo, per se, merely an exercise.
Again, nothing spectacular just a different way of looking at the coffee on display. I like the way the color goes from warmer to cooler as you look down the picture. Lighting is taking on a whole new magic of its own.
Lastly, this photo comes with a cute story.
This is another exercise in white balance settings. I was able to offset the effects of several different light sources. The exterior lighting coming in the front entry, the florescents of the mall, and the tungsten from the Starbucks nearby. I thought this one came out pretty accurate for color. I happened to chose the gear at the table as a random subject.
Most people walk by and avoid eye contact. That's pretty much standard for people anymore. Some people had this look like they wondered what the heck I was doing and why. You can see in their eyes that they think you're a bit off. It's probably true, and I'm totally okay with that.
One white-haired, petite old woman, though, had an entirely different reaction. She actually stopped beside me as I was framing a photo. I was taking several shots at different settings. Like I said, this was a practice exercise.
The woman stood beside me while I captured my shot. Then, very sweetly and sincerely, asked me if I would like her to take a picture so I could be in it, too. Bless her heart.
I guess that she figured if I was interested enough to take a photo I might find it desirable to be in the picture, too. Her offer was politely declined along with an explanation of the purpose for the pictures. She was so sweet it was the least I could do. Gotta love her!
Miles and smiles,