Wednesday, August 6, 2014


On our recent trip to Utah I took quite a few photos of our grandson Stanley, who has just turned 14 months.  Portraiture is one of my weaker photo skills, and those weaknesses were on display on this trip.  However, out of the fairly large number of shots that I took, there were a few "keepers," at least . . . ahem . . . from the perspective of a doting grandparent.  I'd also like to think that I learned a bit from the experience.

During our last visit, over Christmas, things were a bit easier.  Simply put, Stanley was less active, so I didn't have to contend as much with a moving target.  Now, at 14 months, he is walking, or, when not walking, he seems to be perpetually on the go.  That's a problem, particularly in low light situations.  This first shot illustrates that challenge.

I really liked the mischievous expression on Stanley's face, especially in his eyes.  Unfortunately, even though this was taken with the lens wide open and with the ISO set at 1250, the exposure was for 1/15 second, and there is motion blur in his face as well as in his hands.  Even though the shot is poor technically, I have held onto it for its other qualities.

Here is a better shot when I was able to get Stanley to look at the camera--and stay still, momentarily.

This too was taken at f/4 with an ISO of 1250 for 1/13 second.  I liked that I was able to focus on his eyes and that the wide open aperture allowed the background to blur.  The fact that there are objects in the background, even though essentially unidentifiable, gives the photo additional context and authenticity, I think.  It also helps that Stanley is looking directly at the camera.

Here is a third, "action" shot that includes Stanley's dad.

Certainly not perfect, but that's OK, considering what's going on.

Following is another interaction shot from the following day.  This was taken during the day and the ambient light was stronger, though the color wasn't as warm.  I did like the fact that father and son were engaged with the book.

On Saturday we visited the farmers market in Salt Lake City.  It was a bright day so no issues with light, but Stanley was generally on the move, which presented different challenges.  During our visit Stanley acquired a balloon, and we were helping him to distinguish between balls, which he knows, and balloons.  Here are a couple of shots of him (and Jeff) enjoying the balloon.

Might have been better, of course, had the balloon string not been in the second shot.  These were taken at f/4, which worked well to blur out the background.

The final set of photos were of our excursion to Strawberry Reservoir to hunt the mighty crawfish.  One shot is of Stanley getting introduced to a captive crawfish, which he's not sure about.

The other two are of Stanley getting comfortable with his hat while on the shore of the reservoir.

I particularly like this last shot for its candid quality.  It was shot at f/10 but probably could have been shot at a much more wide open aperture.  However, the fact that the background was neutral beach/shore meant that there really were not any significant background distractions anyway.


No comments:

Post a Comment