Self-Portrait and Pier Shadows

© Kerry Drager

Self-Portrait and Pier Shadows

Kelly Heaton 1/13/2005 8:46:05 AM

Now this is cool ... I love the light and the long shadow lines ... and, of course, the self protrait ... #204878

Kerry Drager 1/13/2005 11:57:47 PM

Hi Kelly,
Thanks for your nice comments ... I appreciate it!

The Story Behind the Making of This Photo

  • This was one of those cases in which I followed two great sunset "rules": 1) No matter how much you plan your shooting strategy (and I had scouted out this pier as a potential late-day silhouette subject earlier in the day), always be open for new perspectives. 2) Although the scene in front of you may be super stunning (i.e., a colorful sky and just-above-the-horizon sun), it never hurts to periodically look behind you!
  • Incidentally, I kept my shadow in the composition for two good reasons: 1) Because I always like shadow self-portraits. 2) To show that I actually do use a tripod on just about every non-action, non-candid scene ... just as I always urge others to do. :-)
  • The use of a wide-angle lens and a small aperture (f/22) helped keep everything sharp - from front to back. A high horizon line helped place the emphasis right where I wanted it: on the long shadow lines.
  • By the way, after I captured this photo, I turned right back around and captured the pier silhouette. But my favorite image of that coastal shooting session turned out to be this "unplanned" shadow shot!
  • Kelly Heaton 1/14/2005 5:06:25 AM

    Thanks so much for the info! #1033015

    Kerry Drager 1/14/2005 7:59:56 AM

    You're welcome, Kelly, and thanks for the follow-up!
    Kerry #1033406

    Elizabeth R. McNeil 2/3/2005 1:28:07 PM

    I really like the photo Kelly! You did a great job, and have a good emanation!
    Elizabeth #1081840

    Elizabeth R. McNeil 2/3/2005 3:50:05 PM

    Sorry it was supposed to be imagination not "emanation" not sure what happened there =)
    Elizabeth #1082012

    Kerry Drager 2/3/2005 4:16:15 PM

    Hi Elizabeth,
    Thanks for the nice comments ... much appreciated!!
    Kerry #1082037

    Buddy Purugganan 2/3/2005 6:57:34 PM

    Spectacular!!! Can an AF camera get 'confused' shooting vertical lines like your photo? #1082360

    Kerry Drager 2/3/2005 8:50:30 PM

    Hi Buddy,
    Thanks for the message ... I'm pleased that you like the photo!

    A good question about the autofocus. I was using a manual-focus-only camera at the time, but even with my current high-tech camera, I would still probably have gone the manual-focus route - to put the focus right where I wanted it (about a third up from the bottom border of the picture). But my AF camera could have worked too ... while being careful to make sure the lens focused precisely where I wanted it focused. Then I would have locked the focus for when I e-composed my picture.

    For exposure, I went manual too, since all the dark shadows could have fooled my camera into thinking the scene was too dark ... thus, over-exposure likely would have resulted. I took a meter reading off middle-blue sky part of the sky and used those settings to shoot this scene. I also could have taken my mid-blue alternate reading in Aperture Priority (since I wanted a small aperture), and then "locked" in those settings for my final composition.

    Good question, Buddy ... and I hope this makes sense!
    Kerry #1082505

    Arya Bandyopadhyay 2/4/2005 10:39:10 AM

    Hi Kerry, This is fascinating. You know I have a same shot, almost same. Done with a autofocus camera, aperture priority f16, and focused somewhere around 7 feet. Used 18-35 Nikkor.

    Kerry Drager 2/4/2005 10:55:52 AM

    Hi Arya,
    I appreciate you checking in, and sharing your version of long shadows and self-portrait ... well done!! Also thanks for including the technical data on DOF/focusing.
    Thanks again, Arya, for your comments and excellent photo!
    Kerry #1083654

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    Pier shadows, Central CA Coast, 24mm lens, Fuji Velvia - and a tripod!

    Uploaded on 12/8/2004 2:52:19 PM

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