Saturday I made a trip to Barr Lake State Park in Brighton, Colorado for a sunrise meetup that I was leading. I have noticed it is hard to get people to attend sunrise meetups. I assume this is because they generally start at 5am. Unfortunately that is when some of the best light (warm and some what soft) is available to photograph. It ended up being a friend and myself making the 3 mile hike from the parking lot to the gazebo and back. It was the second time I visited the park, and just like the first time, I found some photographs.
The gazebo area especially would be a great place for engagement photographs or a senior portrait session. The bugs were a bit crazy at times but maybe that's from the recent rain and snow we've had. The water level did appear higher this time compared to the last time I was there and there weren't very many bugs last time. I would think a little bit of bug spray would probably help keep them away during a photo session.
Once we were done with the hike, I headed home. I was tired from the morning activities, but decided to go back out in the afternoon. I filled myself with a little bit of caffeine and sugar and mozzied up to tthe Five Points Jazz Festival in Denver, Colorado. I think they need some better directions on their website or maybe a map. (Oh wait... I see they have one. <face palm to the forhead>) I drove around a bit in the area I thought the event was taking place and ended up catching a view of some artwork being added to the side of a building. Denver has a ton of buildings with artwork added to the sides. I love seeing the creativity covering what would otherwise be a dull side of a building.
Here are a couple more decorated buildings I saw during the festival.
And I found this one as I was leaving that I thought was intersting.
Once I made it to the event, the pay off was the great music, intersting people, interesting part of town and fun I had taking photos and talking with people. The jazz music filled the air with it coming from the shops and stages all around the 4 or 5 block area around the event. Everything from funk, classical, drums, and vocal could be heard wafting through the area depnding on the time of day.
One of the parts I really enjoyed was the open mic in one of the music shops. Performers would get up one by one or a couple at a time to fill in the main melody for a piece while the drums, bass and piano players played the meolody. There were some amazing performances. A few second bits of the performances I recorded can be seen in a video toward the end of this post. The performances also offered some great photos of interesting people.
Above is the sign on the door to the studio. Below is the great jazz pianist who played backup as well as performed some great solo pieces.
Overall the Five Points area of Denver really has some character to it and the added character of a jazz festival just made this a fun and easy self assignment to photograph. I think a meetup might be in order for the event next year or maybe just the area in the future. Here are a few more photos from the event as well as the video I spoke about.
One of the last few assignments I did in Columbus was going to the Gahanna Creekside Jazz and Blues Festival to cover Watermelon Slim and Super Chikan. There was a huge crowd, though honestly not as packed as I expected it to be. Here are some of the photos and a video of some of what I saw.
The video includes a portion of a performance by Watermelon Slim and Super Chikan at night. All the video and audio was shot on a Canon 7d, and though the camera can't quite handle the loud music it does a nice job with a very dark venu. I loved the little bit of trombone at the end. I found him on the street entertaining the crowds. It was a very unique sound.
When the Valentine's Day candy started coming down in price the day before and after the big V day, I decided to pick up some to have a little fun with. I created some images that I mentioned in a previous post, and while making one of those photos I saw some potential to play with video.
I decided to shoot some 60 frame per second video of the candy falling and hitting a piece of plexy glass lit from below. Ok, so it isn't going to win an oscar. It could use some sound and muffling of the candy hitting perhaps, but this was all about playing. Playiing around is half the battle of getting better at anything. If you don't push your boundaries and try to learn then all you do is keep repeating what you created yesterday and the day before.
That works for some. Some famous photographers, artists and musicians created a personal style and they made their living for the rest of their lives off that style. But personally I choose to challenge myself and push boundaries.
Just as U2 has changed their style of sound over the decades so should photographers and artists change their visual styles. For no other reason than for personal self-satisfaction. By doing so they may come up with some stinkers or perhaps a lemon of an album, but it is the act of pushing forward and learning from those mistakes that we grow.
For the technical details in creating the video, I used a Canon 7d at 60 frame per second at 1280 resolution. And then took that video into Adobe Premiere and slowed it to 25% speed using a sequence at 24 frame per second. There are a couple shots at 50% speed because they didn't match the look of the rest of the video if they were slower. I didn't really plan this out, I shot some mid February and followed up with a couple more shots last night when I decided to see if I could put a video piece together that made sense.
That reminds me... I've got to grab my medium format camera and go take some photos just to push some more visual boundaries- get out of thinking in horizontals or veriticals and think square for a day.
Here are a collection of quick videos I shot from different events I've photographed over the past month. I couldn't find something to do with them so I thought I would put them together as a collection of Christmas season videos. Enjoy.
Also a note, I'm starting to use html5 to embed the videos so I hope this works for everyone.
Performs play during the Village Lights in German Village on Sunday, December 5, 2010. Luminaries lined many of the streets in German Village where people took advantage of the carriage rides, caroling and other activities during the event.
Max Spangler and Carol Oakley drive a carriage from Heinlein Carriage Service in the Mariner's Cove subdivision on Sunday, December 19, 2010. Spangler's horses are named Ally (right) and Maggie (left).
The Clintonville Community Choir sings during the Clintonville Christmas Tree Lighting event presented by the Clintonville Rotary at the Park of Roses Shelter House at Whetstone Park, 3901 North High Street, on Sunday, December 19, 2010.
I had an assignment to photograph the 60th birthday celebration for Maryland Elementary School in Bexley yesterday. It wasn't a strong visual assignment so I decided to shoot some video. The video below is what came of it. I would have loved to include more of the singing by the students, but I felt I was exceeding the video length I wanted to arrive at for a video piece like this. None the less the piece allowed me to work on hand holding the camera while panning and zooming. I'm thankful for the image stabilization on the Canon 70-200 lens which removed the shaking but didn't help with a bit of the movement.