Will I Ever Take a Good Picture?

My journey trying to take good photos.

Yet another walk at Hodges.

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I went for another hike at Hodges Sunday morning (9/23/2012). It was a gorgeous day. There was no good photos at the start of the walk and I thought it was going to be one of those days where I enjoyed being out but didn’t take many pictures.

As I was enjoying the walk I came across bridge construction. It isn’t often that you see construction on the trail:


Canon T3i, EF18-135mm f3.5-f5.6@38mm, 1/80 sec, f/5.6, ISO 200

You can see the old bridge to the right. It has seen better days. Interesting concept for bridge building. They used a guardrail as the base. Not sure how this is going to work out. Won’t water get around the wood and rot it? Here is a closer look.


Canon T3i, EF18-135mm f3.5-f5.6@20mm, 1/80 sec, f/5.6, ISO 100

Further along I came across a nice view. Looking at the picture after I took it you can see the sky is blown out so I took a second shot and set the exposure compensation to -2/3. Here are the two shots. On the left you can see detail in the trees and on the right you can see the sky better.


Canon T3i, EF18-135mm f3.5-f5.6@18mm, 1/100 sec, f/6.3, ISO 100 Canon T3i, EF18-135mm f3.5-f5.6@18mm, 1/160 sec, f/8.0, ISO 100 -2/3EV

The histogram on both shots show clipping in the shadows and the 1st picture also is clipped on the highlights. Nothing really bad though. I thought I would take each picture and make it the best I could in LR. Here is the result.


Which one is better. Tough call, I like them both. If I had to pick one I would go with the one on the right. This is the one I set the exposure compensation to -2/3.

Another way to look at this is to do a before and after of each shot. The one with EV set to 0:


The one with EV set to -2/3.


If you remember my Bridge of Flowers edit post (how could you forget? it was my last post) I lamented the fact that I took the picture without exposure compensation. This test was to figure out how to take a better picture so I wouldn’t have to edit as much. I didn’t get a shot I liked more than the other although I think I edited the -2/3 EV version a bit less.

I came across this guy sitting in the middle of the trail:


Canon T3i, EF100mm f2.8L Macro, 1/20 sec, f/4.5, ISO 800

I had a heck of a time getting a picture that looked in focus. This was the best shot and it still looks a bit out of focus. I cranked up the Clarity in LR to 78 to get this which makes the picture look a little funky. I was trying to focus on the eye. I guess I should have set up the tripod but I was afraid if I did he would scamper away. In reality he didn’t move for at least 5 minutes! Yes I took that many shot and still didn’t get a great picture.

Remember the big leaf picture from a previous post? Here is a big mushroom picture:


Canon T3i, EF100mm f2.8L Macro, 1/30 sec, f/7.1, ISO 400

For comparison I took a shot with the ColorPassport (~4.8 inches long):


Some critter was digging up the trail:


Canon T3i, EF100mm f2.8L Macro, 1/4 sec, f/7.1, ISO 400

I wonder what kind of critter did this?

Then I came across a Mushroom Condo:


Canon T3i, EF100mm f2.8L Macro, 1/50 sec, f/6.3, ISO 800

Then I came across this view. I took a couple of pictures at different exposures seeing which one gave the best shot:


Canon T3i, EF100mm f2.8L Macro, 1/1000 sec, f/8.0, ISO 800, -1EV

Nothing exciting but notice just to the left of center what looks like 2 ghost trees. I would like to know what caused this effect. I didn’t notice it when I took the picture.

When you take a picture you like to put in contrast. Different colors or textures. This is the opposite, mud color on mud color but for some reason I really like it:


Canon T3i, EF100mm f2.8L Macro, 1/60 sec, f/5.6, ISO 400

Does anyone else like this? I’m betting not many. Not sure why I like it.

We have had a bit of rain lately and there have been puddles in the trail. As you walk you see frogs jumping in the puddles. This one posed for a bit so I took his picture. I am not sure why the frogs like the puddles and don’t hang out in the bigger bodies of water. I posed this question to a friend and he speculated that it is because there is nothing to eat the frogs in the puddles. Sounds like a good reason to me.


Canon T3i, EF55-250mm f4.5-f5.6@250mm, 1/125 sec, f/5.6, ISO 400

Then in the middle of the trail I found this guy:


Canon T3i, EF100mm f2.8L Macro, 1/6 sec, f/11, ISO 100

I don’t believe I have ever seen this coloring before. Here is a shot from further away. He certainly stands out!


Canon T3i, EF100mm f2.8L Macro, 1/250 sec, f/3.5, ISO 100

Last shot of the day (and I sitll had a good third of the walk left!) I see a sign giving trail etiquette. Interesting, I always thought that hikers yielded to bikers. At least I do.


Canon T3i, EF100mm f2.8L Macro, 1/25 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100

Well that’s it for todays hike. Had a great walk and took a lot of pictures!

I thought I would end my blogs with whatever book I was reading at the time I wrote the blog. Todays book is: Concrete Planet – the Strange and Fascinating Story of the World’s most Common Man-Made Material by Robert Courland. Yep I read just about anything. I get most of my books from the library and this is the only one that looked interesting on my last trip.

Well that’s it for today. Until my next photo shoot!


One thought on “Yet another walk at Hodges.

  1. Hi, I enjoyed the pictures, I’ve seen the fuxxy white caterpillar alot, don’t know what kind of a butterfly/moth it turns into though. This is the 2nd time I tried to leave this message, Mom

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