Monday, August 12, 2013

Photo On The Go

As I was scrolling through the photos on my phone this past weekend to find the pictures of Harvest Book Outlet, I noticed a wide variety of snap shots that I had taken over the years that have never been posted or even uploaded to my computer. I don’t know why they have just been languishing in my phone taking up space but there they were. I started thinking about what I could do with them which has led me to this post. I thought I would take this opportunity to share some of these photos with you along with a little blurb about each one. I will start with animals, then go to plants, and conclude with places.

I will start by running though a few captured animals. Animals have always been a little harder for me to capture with my phone as the movement blurs the image quite easily and, most of the time, I can’t get very close so I am forced to severely pixilated the photo by zooming in. But it hasn’t stopped me from taking the pictures.

Shortly after returning from Israel we went over to my sister and brother-in-law’s house in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. While we were outside the dog decided to get a little rambunctious and jump into the back of the pickup truck where she barked and waited for someone to pay attention to her. I couldn’t waste the opportunity and I took this shot while I had the chance.

While we were looking for an apartment in the fall of 2011 we lived with my parents for a few months. This was not an easy time as my wife is allergic to cats and the only pet my parents have left is a little feline. Fortunately, the cat doesn’t like to move too much and we were able to keep her away from the two of us. This shot pretty much sums up her demeanor.

Rarely do I have the opportunity to catch a bird but, sometimes, when they have a big enough pair I am able to get a couple of frames. This was the case when I saw a bird walking along the fence line behind our apartment building. I was able to slowly pull my phone out from my top pocket and get a few shots before it realized what was happening and flew away.

This past June I made my way up to Newtown, Pennsylvania for a job interview and, having arrived about twenty minutes early took a walk around the building. Also out on a walk that morning was a family of geese who didn’t seem to mind sharing the parking lot with me nor did they care that they were holding people up trying to get to work. I managed to get a picture of the second group that walked by.

Here is a perfect example of the pixilation I mentioned earlier. No matter how slowly I moved the butterfly would flutter away and come back to the same spot. Finally, I had to just stand my ground and zoom in resulting in this colorful little blur.

Plants are a much easier item to take a photo of with the camera as you can usually get right next to them before taking the picture. Lighting can sometimes be an issue but overall it works out fairly well. The only real issue is in the lack of detail and the inability to crop while maintaining clarity. You have to crop the shot before taking the picture. Sometimes it works, other times it doesn’t. These weren’t too bad.

In October 2010, we headed down to Longwood Gardens with my mother-in-law to celebrate my wife’s birthday. I am not a big flower person but it was a special occasion and it was a little time away to relax, enjoy the scenery, and go for a long walk. It was also a time to experiment and see how close I could get my phone to the flowers in order to take a close up shot. This was one of the resulting photos.

The neighbors next to our apartment building are a little eccentric. Nice people but they can sometimes be a little out there when trying to have a short conversation. One of the things I noticed earlier this summer was the bountiful harvest that sprung up on the other side of the fence. I don’t know how urban corn tastes but it made for an interesting photo.

Working at night I have to find something to pass the time and occupy my mind. Most of my nights consist of constant writing and researching the family tree but every once in a while I have to take a quick break from the routine and change things up a bit. One night I decided to take some pictures and one of the resulting photos was of the plant in front of the building.

I have found that when it comes to much broader photos of cityscapes, landscapes, large rooms, or big scenes you can actually get some pretty good shots. All of the recent photos that would fit into this category have been with my digital SLR but I have only started getting back into photography recently so the vast majority of the pictures prior to a few months ago were taken with my phone. Here are a few examples of the varying quality that can be achieved.

A week before making Aliyah we were in Chicago for a wedding. As part of the wedding we were being shuttled around the city taking photos in different locations. Every once in a while I would have a few minutes to fill and so I would pull out my phone and see if there were any interesting vantage points. During one of those breaks I was very happy to get this shot. I don’t know if having a better camera would have really made a difference.  

And here we are back at Longwood Gardens. More than a year after our previous visit we were there with my siblings and their families to take some pictures as a gift for my parent’s 40th wedding anniversary. While the photographer was taking some pictures of the younger kids I turned around and saw the reflection in the pool. I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to try and get the picture. I was really happy when it worked and I captured exactly what I was seeing.

Disney World in July; Yes, it was hot. This was a big trip as my parents took all of us down to Florida to celebrate their 40th. During the course of the week we spent a lot of nights just walking around the park and enjoying the lights in the dark. This night in particular was a welcomed cool respite after a sweltering day punctuated by icy rain. It was a nice end to a weird day.

I had the idea in mind for this post I tried to figure out what would be a good way to end it. Then it hit me. What better way than to take a picture of the previous night’s sunset and end with a splash of color? With or without details, the colors make the photo worth capturing… color transcends pixels.