Best of 2016

  Late December every year I like to look back over my shots and pick my personal Top 10 (+3 this year... so hard to limit it). These are not necessarily the best technically by any means but definitely my personal favorites. Listed in chronological order...

#1 - Window to the Future - January 13th
   The past few years have seen great change in Portland as many structures are being demolished to make room for new development. This particular building is on NW Park Ave and was built in 1910. I have a personal project to document as many demolitions as I possibly can. The framing of the backhoe bucket works perfectly here.

6D - 85mm - f8 - 1/125 - ISO 1000

6D - 85mm - f8 - 1/125 - ISO 1000

#2 - Concerned Todd - January 17th
   Filmmaker and friend Todd Trigsted dropped by to drink some beers and dial in the studio lights. I think we got them pretty dialed.

6D - 135mm - f9 - 1/125 - ISO 100

6D - 135mm - f9 - 1/125 - ISO 100

#3 - Pure Rebel - January 21st
   Traveling model Kristy Harmer is a charmer for sure. The camera loves her and she is a true professional that is booked out every day of the year that she wants. This particular day was a four person group shoot in a recording studio in Brooklyn. I had dozens of shots that were keepers but this one works the best for me. Photo taken from a small step stool to provide a bit of foreshortening that emphasizes her face.

6D - 35mm - f6.3 - 1/60 - ISO 100

6D - 35mm - f6.3 - 1/60 - ISO 100

#4 - Reaching - March 8th
   This shot is from a poplar tree farm along I-84 in Boardman, OR. The B&W conversion using NIK Silver EFEX just works for me. 

6D - 16mm - f16 - 1/200 - ISO 100

6D - 16mm - f16 - 1/200 - ISO 100

#5 - Knob - March 8th
   The 1914 Davenport Hotel is a hotel located in downtown Spokane, WA. The Davenport was the first hotel in the United States with air conditioning, a central vacuum system, pipe organ, and dividing doors in the ballrooms. The hotel is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Door hardware is my living and photographing vintage hardware is a passion of mine.

6D - 35mm - f11 - 25 sec. - ISO 100

6D - 35mm - f11 - 25 sec. - ISO 100

#6 - Monroe Street Bridge - March 9th
   This bridge is also in downtown Spokane. This B&W long exposure using NIK Silver EFEX is one of my personal favorites. 

6D - 16mm - f16 - 30 sec. - ISO 200

6D - 16mm - f16 - 30 sec. - ISO 200

#7 - Palouse Falls - March 9th
   Palouse Falls is one of the wonders of Washington State. This photo is a long exposure taken with a Lee Big Stopper (10 stop ND filter).

6D - 16mm - f11 - 30 sec. - ISO 100

6D - 16mm - f11 - 30 sec. - ISO 100

#8 - Attack from above! - June 8th
   On my way home from work I spotted this Osprey being tormented by a murder of blackbirds. I pulled over and let the shutter of my new 7D2 machine gun for a few minutes. Spray and pray they call it... my prayers were answered with this shot.

7D2 - 100mm - f8 - 1/800 - ISO 100

7D2 - 100mm - f8 - 1/800 - ISO 100

#9 - Elle Apostrophe - June 18th
   This shoot took place in the Benson-Cheney mansion in St. Johns. Victorian attire and fog machines were on the menu and we certainly made the most of it.

6D - 85mm - f8 - 1/160 - ISO 100

6D - 85mm - f8 - 1/160 - ISO 100

#10 - Island Lake - June 29th
   Our summer vacation was in Montana and Wyoming this year. No trip is complete without a drive to Yellowstone National Park via the breathtaking Beartooth Pass. This is an early morning (just after sunrise) shot at the edge of the lake taken rather quickly due to the fact that the mosquitos absolutely love my sweet blood and they were swarming me.

7D2 - 90mm - f16 - 1/125 - ISO 800

7D2 - 90mm - f16 - 1/125 - ISO 800

#11 - Square Butte Sunset II - July 6th
   Sunsets in Montana are a true sight to behold! This particular shat was taken just after the sun dipped directly behind Square Butte. The clouds just exploded in color. This is an HDR (High Dynamic Range) composite taken from a 3 shot bracket and combined in Adobe Lightroom.

6D - 35mm - f11 - 1/20 - ISO 100

6D - 35mm - f11 - 1/20 - ISO 100

#12 - Untitled - October 8th
   My friend Michael asked me to be the second shooter at a wedding for a good family friend. This shot was the father/bride dance and captures Dad's perfect expression.

6D - 100mm - f4 - 1/180 - ISO 400

6D - 100mm - f4 - 1/180 - ISO 400

#13 - Angelo - November 12th
   I got the chance to shoot my favorite band Fishbone from the front row. Learned a lot on how to shoot in low light without flash that night... basically use fast glass and bump shutter speed and ISO up as far as you can to get the correct exposure. I used my 35 f2 IS and 85 1.8 as fast primes may not be as versatile as a zoom but they sure do let the light in.

6D - 85mm - f2 - 1/250 - ISO 1600

6D - 85mm - f2 - 1/250 - ISO 1600

#13 - Tilikum Morning II - November 30th
   I revisited this shot from last year and nailed it even more successfully due to the fog and light. I manages to capture the lights on the bridge as well as the OHSU tram. I will take this shot a few times a year and one of these days I'll hit it perfectly. 

7D2 - 135mm - f11 - 1/250 - ISO 250

7D2 - 135mm - f11 - 1/250 - ISO 250

Taste of Style - 9/24/2016

I was asked to contribute to the Oregon Food Bank's Taste of Style benefit event. It's now an annual event raising funds for those less fortunate.

"Oregon Food Bank and our Statewide Network of 21 regional food banks and approximately 970 partner agencies help our neighbors facing food insecurity throughout Oregon and Clark County, Washington."

The event was a great time and hopefully successful for the cause. It displayed talent from twelve students from the Art Institute of Portland as well as student and professional hairdressers from around the greater Portland metro area.

Canon 6D - EF85 1.8 - f5.6 - 1/80 - ISO6400

Canon 6D - EF85 1.8 - f5.6 - 1/80 - ISO6400

Event photography is definitely not my forte. You have to be good with people, quick and really pay attention to what is going on around you. Not to mention good with flash. 

Canon 6D - EF85 1.8 - f5.6 - 1/180 - ISO400

Canon 6D - EF85 1.8 - f5.6 - 1/180 - ISO400

There is simply no way to shoot in these dark environments without a speedlite. I'm learning flash slowly. This was excellent practice and for the most part I did OK.

Canon 6D - EF85 1.8 - f5.6 - 1/80 - ISO400

Canon 6D - EF85 1.8 - f5.6 - 1/80 - ISO400

Donating your time for causes which you feel are important, and important to you, can be very rewarding. I will most likely be back next year if asked. 

Canon 6D - EF85 1.8 - f5.6 - 1/80 - ISO400

Canon 6D - EF85 1.8 - f5.6 - 1/80 - ISO400

Canon 6D - EF85 1.8 - f5.6 - 1/80 - ISO400

Canon 6D - EF85 1.8 - f5.6 - 1/80 - ISO400

Canon 7D2 - EF16-35 f4 - f5.6 - 1/250 - ISO800

Canon 7D2 - EF16-35 f4 - f5.6 - 1/250 - ISO800

For more information...  www.oregonfoodbank.org  and  www.tasteofstylepdx.org

Sunset over Horsetail Falls - 9/18/2016

Landscape photography is very difficult...

The results of this afternoon's shoot. I'm not completely happy with any of the results. Color balance is off between my two bodies (Canon 6D and 7D2) and lenses and my heavy processing is not consistent, not that it really matters if viewed individually. The pink in the distance is nearly unrecognizable.

Canon 6D - 16-35mm f4 @ 16mm - ISO 100 - f11 - 1/10

Canon 6D - 16-35mm f4 @ 16mm - ISO 100 - f11 - 1/10

Landscape photography is very difficult. You could go to a spot many times and still not be there for THAT time... the time where all the planets align and you get the light and composition your were hoping for.

Canon 7D2 - 70-200mm f4 IS @ 70mm - ISO 200 - f11 - 1/15

Canon 7D2 - 70-200mm f4 IS @ 70mm - ISO 200 - f11 - 1/15

Today was no exception. After a quick run up the Horsetail Falls trail I arrived just a bit late and out of breath. The thick clouds to the West were blocking out the color in the distance to the East. At least the 15 minutes of shooting was dry... not so much the jog back down the trail in near darkness as the heavens opened up to a torrential downpour. Ah, the Columbia Gorge... so beautiful yet so relentless. One minute just perfect and the next absolutely terrible.

Canon 7D2 - 70-200mm f4 IS @ 70mm - ISO 200 - f11 - 1/

Canon 7D2 - 70-200mm f4 IS @ 70mm - ISO 200 - f11 - 1/

Top this off by a drive back to town staring at the remains of an absolutely stunning sunset over Portland... that I completely missed. It happens, quite frequently I may add. Well at least I scouted a new location. Maybe next time.

Yes, landscape photography is very difficult.

Memorial for Logan Michael Johnston 1947-2016

We traveled to Hardin, Montana last weekend to visit the family and remember my brother-in-law Logan. The following photos are selected from the FB gallery of the service and weekend.

"Sometimes simple objects can tell a story better than words. These photos show a sportsman, a mechanic, a linesman, a farmer, a rancher and a soldier. Taken all together they show a life well respected and loved. RIP"

2016 PDX Squared

I recently competed in this years PDX Squared. 72 contestants are given a geographic square in Portland with a list of categories to photograph.

You can enter in up to 5 categories. The categories were:
  - Model Portrait
  - Creative Storytelling
  - Real Portrait
  - Documentary
  - Urban Landscape
  - Natural World
  - Portlandia
  - Series of 3 to 5

There were also some Photographic Craft categories that were picked from the above categories by the judges:
  - Framing
  - Directed Light
  - In-Camera Time & Motion
  - Creative Focus
  - Black & White

It was a fun 24 hours and I think I'll do it again next year. I learned the judges are looking for the STORY behind the photograph and not just a pretty picture. I also learned that my skill level has progressed a lot in the past two years and I can hold my own with my peers, which is a great feeling all in itself.

Below are my entries. The Model Portrait did the best (top 4). The others not so well.

Model Portrait

Model Portrait

Creative Storytelling

Creative Storytelling

Natural World

Natural World

Urban Landscape

Urban Landscape

Series of 3 to 5

Series of 3 to 5

The Demolition of 5166 (5134) SE Division Street

The wrecking ball continues to smash a wide swath through our beautiful city. Portland is HOT real estate wise and developers are targeting long neglected properties, easily dividable lots and/or prime locations. Demolitions and construction are everywhere. Whether you agree with the 'progress' or not there is no denying that the times they are a changing.

These events give me lots of opportunity for taking interesting photos. I do this not only to document the destruction but to also educate the public on what is going on around them and to try and tell the story of the house through visuals.

Be aware that there are hazards of such procedures and if not done correctly they might have an effect on your health. Lead paint, asbestos, mold... these are but a few of the toxic elements you have a right to be concerned about.

Interesting masonry detail on the chimney.

Interesting masonry detail on the chimney.

Portland has a real problem with low income housing and we have more than our share of homeless because of many factors... and one of them may be getting torn down just a few houses down in your own neighborhood.

Personally I find the demolitions sad when I think of all the time and labor involved in design and construction, and the stories these structures could tell if the walls could talk; easily destroyed within the span of just a few short hours.

Built in 1902 - Demolished 4/18/2016

Built in 1902 - Demolished 4/18/2016

 

 

 

   

Multnomah Greyhound Park

Did some urban exploring in and around the old Multnomah Kennel Club recently. This park closed in 2004 and vandalism, decay, neglect and nature has taken over. Quite the amazing place in it's time it is now being demolished and another Dead Memory.

"Greyhound racing in the Portland metropolitan area began in 1933, organized by the Multnomah Kennel Club and held at Multnomah Stadium (now the site of Providence Park).

In January 1956, MKC purchased a 90-acre site in Wood Village, Oregon, with plans to build a new dog track and stadium there. The new dedicated greyhound racing track opened in 1957 and was originally named Fairview Park, but in 1978 it was renamed Murray Kemp Greyhound Park in honor of MKC's founder and longtime president. In 1991, the name was changed to Multnomah Greyhound Park." -Wiki

 

Rows and rows of seats.

Rows and rows of seats.

Quiniela is a bet. This scoreboard lost.

Quiniela is a bet. This scoreboard lost.

Empty cages are a reminder of a past era of animal sports.

Empty cages are a reminder of a past era of animal sports.

The once proud building mere weeks before demolition. Infield overgrown with berry vines.

The once proud building mere weeks before demolition. Infield overgrown with berry vines.