Over the last month, I’ve kind of struggled with the weekly challenges and even debated taking a break from it. But, each week, I find something that works enough to submit an image by midnight on Sunday. Even though I may not take that many shots for a challenge, just having a weekly theme to focus on (couldn’t resist that pun…) makes me look around more. So, in essence, the challenge is doing its job: seeing the world around me with a photographic eye.
The Fabric Challenge
This was definitely definitely a desperation week for me. Given that most of my current wardrobe is from Walmart, Columbia Outlet, or thrift shops, the whole idea of “fabric as photography” made me laugh! But, I did have this quilt I’m working on, so I played with the pieces and colors until I had something I liked enough to submit.
The ISO 100 Challenge
I camped with friends in east Tennessee during this challenge and the next, so the stretch of river that runs from Watauga Dam to Wilbur Dam was the supporting player for two challenges. For this one, I was playing around with my Lensbaby collection and had the Composer lens on when this skiff floated by. I had one chance to get the shot at ISO 100, between their movement away from me and the fading light as the sun went below the opposite cliff. I like how the front man is in focus and the other one is not.
The Lensbaby Composer with the effect I had does a narrow line of focus in the frame. If I’d had more time, I would have picked that focus line to be horizontal instead of vertical. I think it would have been a more interesting shot that way.
The Red Challenge
One afternoon, I saw my friend Michael playing with his new Fuji camera. I suggested a photo walk down the campground road and off we went. He’s got a great eye and experiments a lot with positions, whereas I tend to forget that getting low or looking down can produce a more interesting perspective. As he squatted down to get a shot of fog creeping along the river, I imitated his position and got this shot. His red sweatshirt made the shot a good fit for the Red challenge.
In post-processing (Lightroom Classic), I removed all the colors except red. The original shot with the green grass around him lessened the impact of the red sweatshirt. I played with the color sliders to leave only the red color intact, as well as cropped the image a bit to emphasize him more.
The Portrait Challenge
After a weird week and a half (see Vagabond Improv for details), I ended up in Maryland camping with two friends for a few nights. They suggested a local winery where we had a wonderful afternoon with sunshine, a light breeze, and a few bottles of wine. I took this shot of the two assistant winemakers who were working near us. They were happy to pose with a bottle of the wine they had helped to make. It may not be the best portrait ever, but it definitely captures each man’s personality!
Do What You Can With All You Have, Wherever You Are.