The photography Gods were happy with me today.  It’s been cloudy and raining all week.  A small sliver of sunlight sent me out of the house to try and get a few shots with some new camera gear.  Every time I was ready to take a shot, the cloudy skies would part and the sun came out.  What luck!

I purchased some time ago a bean bag camera stand called “THE POD” and a new kind of camera filter.  Both have been sitting on a shelf waiting for an opportunity to be used.  Today was the day!  The bean bag camera mount is quite a clever invention.  It’s small and screws into the bottom of the camera in the normal tripod screw.  That way it doesn’t fall out and lets you put the camera just about anywhere.  And when you’re done, unscrew it and toss it in a jacket pocket or backpack.  It’s quite light and molds to whatever shape you need.  Today I used it on cobblestones by the church and on top of a waist high fence by the waterfall.  The bottom even has velcro, so you can take the beans out and pack it flat for transport.  Then just fill it with sand (or rice or whatever you have) and you’re good to go!  Brilliant.




A closeup of the stained glass:



Today’s the first day that I’ve tried shooting with a adjustable neutral density filter.  Basically this filter allows me to take long exposure shots during the day without affecting any colours.  You’ll see the effect in the two picture below with moving water.  On a day as bright as this, normally you’d have to use a really fast shutter speed, which would ‘freeze’ the image.  Quite boring!  These images are taken with about an 8 second exposure.  See how it ‘softens’ the flow of water?  Normally to get shots like this, you’d have to buy a set of filters each with a different degree of grey to get the exposure you need.  But this new one is fully adjustable.  Just rotate the filter and you’ve got exactly what you need.  SO HANDY!!

I was quite lucky with bridge shot.  Exposures of that long tend to have moving people become ‘ghosts’ as you can see where there were walking AND the background behind them.  In this case, the people on the bridge were posing for a picture of their own and stood quite still.

Quite happy about the results of today’s “test” shoot.  Both items approved!


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