I love bicycle racing. I used to do quite a bit of it when I was younger — I managed a bike shop, ran a club, raced myself as a Category 3 racer back in the day. I’ve forgotten more about bikes than most people ever know, so when it comes time for the racing season to start up here in Arizona I try to go out and hit a couple of races to stir the blood again. I’ve been riding my bike to work on occasion as well, and it REALLY feels good to be back on two wheels. Or rather, it really feels good now that my butt is once again used to the saddle. It hurt a LOT for a couple of days until that happened.
Anyway, a few weeks ago I went out to the Avondale Criterium in Avondale, AZ and shot some of the early races, and had a lot of fun. Bikes haven’t changed that much since I was riding seriously, but there sure are some good riders out there. There’s another race on the 26th that I may try to hit as well, just for fun.
Shooting cycling is a great way to practice a number of photography skills. First and foremost, it helps with controlling motion. The shutter’s function on the camera (as part of basic exposure) is to control motion. Shooting with a fast shutter speed will stop motion, while shooting with a slow shutter speed will allow the motion to register on the image. It’s the photographer’s job to decide what the final output needs to be, and in order to determine this it’s vital that the photographer understands the camera. So shooting bike racing is a good predictable way to experiment with shutter speed choice and control. Second, cycling is a great way to practice focus control and panning, meaning experimenting with the continuous focusing function of the camera and also following the rider with the lens as he zips by. See if you can figure out what my settings were in these photos!
I love marching bands. I was in marching band all the way through high school and on into college, and actually earned money with my mediocrity as a brass player for a while. So when my daughter decided to join the marching band, I was thrilled! She was blessed to be a member of the Coronado High School Dons marching band, which has a long history of quality, pride and skill. I try to make as many shows as I can, and I always have my camera with me. To view the gallery, please click here — this gallery is passworded, so if you are a parent of a Dons Band member, please contact me for a password.
Justin’s a dynamic senior with huge talents. Juggler, performer, flutist, athlete, parkour runner, Christian, and all-round solid young man. We met up last Thursday and did his senior portraits. We had a great time and got loads of fun photos! I would seriously injure myself if I tried three quarters of the things he does with ease. Amazing!
It’s getting close to the yearbook deadlines for Senior Portraits! It’s also getting close to the holiday season, and what better gift can you think of to give than a beautiful custom portrait of your senior? 2life Photography will create unique, custom images that capture your senior as the mature young person he or she is. All of our senior portrait sessions include a complimentary yearbook headshot and a fun slideshow for a phone or iPod. And until the end of November, all senior sessions are 25% off the total package! This includes the sitting fee and prints, as well as any albums or custom canvas wraps as well! Contact me for more information and to schedule your session.
Congratulations to the CCV Stars soccer team on their tournament win last weekend in Flagstaff, AZ! We went up on Saturday and although it was raining, watched a great game in the afternoon. I can’t imagine how difficult it was for these young men from the Valley to play soccer in the rarefied air of Flagstaff, not to mention the rain and lightning storms.
Saturday, 5 September. The West Valley Photo Club went to Wickenburg, Arizona to the Fiesta Septembre to shoot the events. It was absolutely sheeting down rain in the morning in Phoenix, but I had high hopes we would get some dry weather 50 miles out of town. No such luck. Oscar’s van had a wiper malfunction on the way, so we were a little behind, but it wasn’t quite raining when we got there. That changed, and it started a steady drizzle of large drops of rain, forcing cancellation of some of the events and reducing the numbers of the people who attended. The fiesta was still quite well attended, though, and the food was good and the people were nice. There was great Mexican music and dancing, and the talented young dancers of the Ballet Folklorico De Santa Maria were delightful to watch.
I love the rodeo. I have been shooting rodeo for a number of years, and I am always in awe of the event. The pageantry, the athleticism and skill of not only the cowboys but also of the cowgirls, rodeo queens, and the rodeo clowns. That stuff must HURT. Rodeo people are among my favorite people in the world. Patriotic, friendly, hard-working, and close to the earth, rodeo people are respectful of nature and the animals by which they earn their living.
I must confess that the opening ceremony of the rodeo always gives me chills. As a veteran, I deeply appreciate the consideration given in the invocation to the men and women who serve or who have served our country, and also to the traditions that have made America great. When, en masse, the entire crowd stands and doffs their hats for the colors, it makes me feel proud. This year, the young man who carried the colors to the center of the arena did a fine job of representing his country. He and his family should be proud.
The entire gallery can be found here. For now, here are some images to whet your appetite.