Tuesday, April 13, 2010

On Special Assignment from our Roving Reporter

Spring is official here even if it is snowing outside my window! LOL In other parts of Canada, spring is here in all its glory. Today our Roving Reporter series continues with one of our newest Design Team members, Stephanie Schan. I have long admired Stephanie's photography and asked her to pictorially show us how to capture spring "on film." I think you'll be inspired by her photos and I hope to see some of your spring shots too!

Here is our Roving Reporter...

Spring is in the air! Yesterday was so nice, that I grabbed my camera and equipment and went for a drive with the windows down. I love spring because there are so many photo opportunities outside. So what do we look for when we’re trying to show spring in a photograph? There are many photo ops around your house that will show at a glance that it’s spring! Just a short 3 minutes from my house I saw pussy willows in bloom. These soft downy blossoms will keep for months in your house in a dry vase.

To get this shot, get in as close as your lens will allow you to focus and set your camera to a low aperature. I used f2.8 for this. If you can’t adjust the aperature on your camera, then use the “flower” icon. Also keep your ISO as low as possible to avoid grainy photos. If it’s a windy day, you may need a tripod to hold your camera still and an arm to hold the bloom as well.

What about the other obvious “spring is here” signs? Spring always means that the snow is receding and underneath is all that dull, dead grass. Try a photo of the flattened dead grass – it gives an almost monochromatic effect with lots of texture.

Look in your garden and flower beds. There are shoots of flowers popping up everywhere. You may think I got on my tummy on the ground to take this photo, but I actually set my camera on f2.8 (because I wanted a blurry background) and placed it on the ground. It took a few test shots to get it right (thank goodness for digital cameras), but I ended up with this one!

Birds are one of the first signs of spring in any country. Here in Canada, we see a robin on the lawn and we know for sure that spring is on the way. Strings of Canada geese flying north (although some are confused about direction) are another one! Here in the Ottawa area, local birders have their eyes glued to the nesting boxes along Earl Armstrong Road to see if they can catch the first Eastern Bluebirds returning to nest.

Bird photography requires a long lens to get up close (at least 400 mm) and quick reflexes on the photographer’s part to be able to get a good shot. I may take 100’s of photos of birds, and just keep one or two.

I’m sure that we could all photograph the above signs of spring in less than a day. So what about the not so obvious signs of spring? Think about it for a minute. I grew up in a small town NW of Ottawa, ON. When I was a kid, our Dairy Queen was the type that had a window that you walked up to and placed your order. We always knew it was spring when the DQ opened that window for business!

What can you photograph that would say “spring” in a more subtle manner?

How about these ideas???

summer tires on your car
sidewalk chalk
drops of rain

muddy dogs (or kids)
short sleeve t shirts
puddle boots
neighbours doing yard work
tent trailers airing out
dog hair everywhere
garage sales
Roll UP the Rim

All of these mean that warmer weather is on the way! So get out your cameras, get outside and take some photos of spring. It’s happening all around us!

Please show us your spring photos!


Neisey said...

Great post Stevie! Awesome tips and great photos!

Lorraine said...

Wonderful idea! and of course, such great photos! Thanks Stephanie!

Jamie V said...

Loved your post and photos, thanks Stephanie :)