Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Getting the Image

Ken showed up for a paddle wearing one of those new cameras (this isn't about the camera, per se). I am anxious to see how his shots turn out.The struggle to get good images on the water is complicated by the wet environment and the need to have both hands on the steering wheel just when some of the best images appear.


The better our cameras the less likely we are to take them out onto the water, especially in conditions. Then, if we do take a good SLR out there, there is the problem of changing lenses, lack of the stability of a tripod and so on; all the things that keep us from getting excellent images (when is the last time you brought a polarizing filter out with you?).

Another challenge is to get an image that really shows what you are experiencing. For instance, I rarely see an image that shows the dynamics of waves. It just never looks like it really was out there. This, in part, may be due to being unable to use the camera in dicey conditions. It's hard to compose a picture while bracing. Another problem is shutter lag, that seemingly infinite time between the pressing of the shutter release and the actual click of the shutter. This is especially true in many of the water proof models.

Still, folks do get magnificent images (Stan McKenzie and others, to mention one) out there and, happily, are willing to share them.

Paddle safe...
DS

9 comments:

Tony said...

On Stan, you got that right, he's an artisan.

On capturing the sea state you're also right. A few paddlers in the scene adds perspective for waves, like when you capture only their heads as they paddle in the troughs.

Tony :-)

Silbs said...

I agree, Tony. The shutter lag bit sometimes makes it hard for me to capture a paddler and a wave at just the right time.

corgimas said...

Holy strangulation hazard Batman!!!!!!!! please tell me he is carrying a blade of some sort!

lets see what he tapes!!!!

Silbs said...

Now that you mention it, that cord dangling down is material for another blog :)

steve said...

my olympus has a shoot and select function which allows you to shoot good action shots but you need to be in the worst position to get the best pictures, the new canon is much faster with less delay . we just do the best we can and sometimes have to roll as well weith the camera dangling by a thread.

gnarlydog said...

while taking decent pix on water requires skill, dedication and some luck, only practice makes perfect.
Since most modern photography is digital shooting a lot does not cost anything; delete most files, keep only good ones...
On the shutter lag, there is a trick: prefocus by half depressing the shutter button and wait for the "right" moment.
Like this one: http://www.flickr.com/photos/gnarlydog/4307547625/

Silbs said...

Great pic and perfect points. Still, even with prefocusing, some shutters just won't respond fast enough. BTW, what camera are you using?

Ken said...

I KNEW you were going to comment on that cord. :) You took your photo before I had a chance to stow it behind my PFD. Since this was the first time I experimented with this camera while kayaking, the cord was my experimental solution to tethering the camera in case the head band came off my head. If you have a better suggestion, please let me know. BTW, here's some footage I shot: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uydrsDnQ7HQ

Silbs said...

Great footage, thanks...and it was corgimas that brought up the cord.