Category Archives: Technical

July is just around the corner

Let’s Shoot Fireworks!

2017 Hudson Fireworks by Bryan Leonard

This year Hudson’s fireworks display will be at Lakefront Park on Sunday, July 1, at dusk.  It will cap off the Booster Days festivities that includes live music, a beer garden, carnival rides, a parade, live music and more.   For more details on Hudson’s Booster Days celebration click on this link.  Stillwater’s fireworks display will be on Wednesday, the 4th, beginning at dusk (around 10:00 pm). 

2017 Hudson Fireworks by Terry Butler

Bryan Leonard and I shot fireworks last year at just about the same time, ten minutes after ten.  Bryan’s shot was taken from in front of the Phipps and he used a wide angle lens (18mm) f/ll, ISO 100 for 5 seconds.  I took the walking path that is parallel to the I94 bridge and wish I had brought bug spray.  Mine was a composite that was shot at ISO 100, f/11 and the fireworks shots ranged from two to four seconds at 55mm.  This year I plan on being at the Phipps by 9:00 pm, so meet me there!

Photowalks and Galleries

I need your photos for galleries!  Please send your photos to Size them so that they are 960 pixels on the longest side and give them a title that includes your name.  Photos to include:

  • The Wall that Heals exhibit at the Minnesota state capitol last weekend
  • Blooming Butterflies exhibit at Como Park taken any time this year or last year
  • Fireworks or 4th of July celebrations

Important:  July Meeting Date

I’ll be making another blog post, but for now, please remember that we will be meeting on the second Wednesday, July 14, 6:30 pm, instead of July 4.  Richard Hudson and Pete Mutschler will host a Scavenger Hunt and Ice Cream Social.

Everything you could possibly want to know about shooting fireworks is contained in this video by John Cornicello that he did for Creative Live.  It’s an hour long, but as I said, it includes everything, including making double exposures for getting more bang in one shot.

See ya Sunday night!

Also posted in Club Meeting Info, Photowalks

Photowalk Scheduled and Salon Meeting Wrap-up

The Wall that Heals Photowalk

Meetup at the exit 2 Park & Ride for carpooling on Thursday, June 21, 6:00 pm.

When I was a young mother in the late 60’s and early 70’s the national evening news program featured stories about the Vietnam War, including a body count each night.  It was heart-breaking and scary because I had three first cousins there at the same time, as well as many high school class mates.  When the memorial in Washington, DC was dedicated in 1982, I knew I wanted to experience that someday.  I still haven’t been there but the next best thing will be at the Minnesota state capitol later this month.  From June 21-24 there will be a 3/4-scale traveling replica of “The Wall” on the capitol grounds.  The weekend will be filled with events and will be open 24 hours a day.   Click here for more information.

Salon Meeting Wrap-up

Image lacks “pop”

Image with black and white points set using the sliders in the Basic panel

Our judge, John Arthur Anderson, commented on some of the salon images as needing some “pop”.  He later demonstrated in Lightroom how setting black and white points can transform photos.  As a judge for other camera clubs, I agree that I’ve seen a lot of good images over the years that could have been great images if the tonal range was expanded.  Since RAW images straight out of the camera look a bit flat it’s our job to make the most of all the data we capture. Continue reading »

Also posted in Club Meeting Info, Educational, Photowalks

Special Meeting Coming Up!

John Gregor – “Filter for Feeling”

John Gregor Selfie

We will have a special meeting this Wednesday, February 14, 6:30 pm, in the River Room at the Phipps Center for the Arts.  The meeting will feature a program, “Filters for Feeling”  or “How to use filters to create a specific look and feel to your images”.  From smooth and serene to rough and wild texture in a photograph, the use of filters can convey feeling and emotion that reflects the photographer’s response to the subject. Using filters is the key to creating texture in landscape photography. It is more than simply screwing a filter in front of your lens, it is understanding the relationship between exposure time, subject movement, dynamic range and more. This means knowing which filter to use, how to control the exposure time through ISO, aperture, and filter selection. In this presentation Gregor will discuss the nuances of using filters and how to integrate them into your camera workflow so you can use them effectively.

Gregor has a Masters of Education through St. Scholastica College with an emphasis in photographic literacy. He earned his BA from the University of Minnesota with a degree through the University Without Walls program, and his degree was entitled “Documentary Expression of American Culture Through Photography” a combined degree of Social Sciences and Fine Art Photography.

Continue reading »

Also posted in Club Meeting Info, Educational

March Meetings

Brian PetersonWhat a pleasure it was to have Brian Peterson with us for our first meeting of the month!  It was interesting to get an understanding of what it is like to be a working photographer-journalist.  Considering all of his local and national awards, he came across as humble and down to earth.  When sharing information about “State of Wonders”, Brian told his experience about self-publishing a printed book.  Brian generously brought a signed print that was given to one of our members who purchased a book.  Congratulations to Carol Menke for being the winner!  The real take-away for me was hearing about the way he approaches a subject to tell the story.  Coincidentally, that is one of our assignments this year.

Judging N4C – Saturday, March 19, 9 am to noon

I would first like to say thank-you for letting me serve as yourOur club joined the N4C almost two years ago and since then our members have been entering their monthly contests.  This month it’s our turn to judge the travel contest, a first for us.  We expect to receive close to a hundred digital images.  You are welcome to stop by to observe or to help.


 Lighting with Off Camera Flash – Sunday, March 20, 1:00-3:00 pm with Ted Johnston

Continue reading »

Also posted in Club Meeting Info, Educational, Meeting Summary

My Compositing

Terry asked if I could explain a bit about the composite images I have recently been doing. I was inspired by the work of photographer Joel Grimes and love the illustrative, contrasty and exaggerated look of his composites. Capturing the images is surprisingly simple – the post-processing however can be a bit complicated. I don’t go into great depth here as it would be a very long video! This whole video was filmed with the GoPro Hero 3+. Watch in HD and full screen!

I like trying different things… but am mastering none! Having said that, I am having fun and I encourage everyone to get out of your comfort zone and explore this art called photography!

Also posted in Creative/Artistic, Educational

Happy Fourth of July!

TSchmidt-City-LightsHey everyone! I hope you all will have a safe and fun 4th of July! As a reminder, our next Club meeting is Wednesday July 9th at 6:30 PM. Members Troy and Fred will do a mini-tutorial on photographing the night time urban landscape. They will cover the following:

-Equipment needed
-Picking the right location and subject
-Camera settings
-Taking the shot
-Post processing Continue reading »

Also posted in Club Meeting Info, Creative/Artistic, Educational

Member Spotlight & Textures

Grace JToday we spotlight one of our youngest Club Members, 15 year old Grace Johnston.

Main camera/gear: Sony Cyber-shot

Favorite Editing Software: Lightroom 4 and GIMP 2

What is your specific background or interest in photography?: I’m an artist want-to-be. I LOVE old artwork, especially oil paintings. When my Dad got back into photography, I tagged along being interested in it, and seeing a way to get Daddy time. Now I’m his test model/guinea pig. Using what I’ve learned in art class, I got hooked on photography, because I could finally make some of the pictures I saw in my head. Continue reading »

Also posted in Creative/Artistic, Educational, Just for fun

Spring Break Coming Up and ‘My point’

Hey everyone! If you have not registered for Spring Break you have until March 18th to save $10 off the $50 ‘at the door’ charge. HERE is the link for the online registration. I won’t restate all of the speakers, etc. but HERE is a link for more information. I hope to see all of you there!

Speaking of March 18th… Ted Johnston will host a mid-month tutorial on Speedlighting. For those of us that are not comfortable or that familiar with off-camera flash, this will be great! The class will be in our usual room at the Phipps at 6:30 PM.

And at the end of our last meeting I did a quick Lightroom edit and forgot to mention ‘my point’ of doing it! (It has been a long winter…) A great way to learn, at least for me, is to find an inspiring photo and then try to recreate it… or at least in terms of a similar look. We have all heard the term Rembrandt Lighting which is based upon using a single soft light for portraiture as seen in paintings from the artist Rembrandt. By really looking at and dissecting light, shadow, color, composition, texture, etc. you can learn different techniques to add to your photographic knowledge base. Below is a video of my attempt to stylize a photo of my daughter to that of photographer Joel Grimes.


Also posted in Club Event, Creative/Artistic, Educational

Lightroom TImelapse Tutorial

I have tried a bunch of different programs to put together timelapse video. My favorite was GoPro’s Cineform Studio. For some reason it stopped working on my computer but the program was recently updated and I haven’t tired to see if it now works. In the meantime, I have been using Lightroom to put the photos together. Below is a tutorial on how I do it. The final video at the end looks a little choppy but that is because of my screen recording program. The actual Lightroom output is smooth as silk. I may show that in November when we…yes, discuss our personal projects from this past year! Have a great week everybody!

(viewing of the video will be best full screen and in HD)

Don’t forget to download a picture or two from the September 8th blog post to edit for the next meeting!

And Terry had posted this on our Facebook page but there will be a Photography Workshop by Canon Explorer of Light Photographer Adam Jones Saturday October 19th, 7-9:00 PM in Rosemount. You do need to register and this may fill up quick. HERE is a link with the details.

Also posted in Educational, Just for fun

Upcoming Meeting and a River Hike!

alec-johnsonWe will have a special guest at the next meeting! Photographer Alec Johnson will help us ‘See in Black and White’. This will be a great presentation with some beautiful images. Please plan on attending the September 4th meeting. HERE is a link to see more of Alec’s work.

We also have photo meet-up next Wednesday August 28th at 6:30 PM at the LeFever Training Center. The address is 1177 U.S. 12, Roberts, WI. HERE is a link to a map. They are just west of Roberts on HWY 12. They have beautiful horses and are allowing us full access to the animals and facility. Please plan to attend!

Finally, Jeff and I made a visit to Willow River State Park which is right in our own back yard and well worth a visit. I wanted to try getting that silky smooth look to moving water in my photographs so off we went. Take a look!

I lied -one more thing… I was contacted about a ‘Capture the Heart of America’ photo contest. They are looking for agriculturally-related subjects with a top prize of $500. HERE is the link to the Silos & Smokestacks National Heritage website.

Also posted in Club Meeting Info, Creative/Artistic, Educational Tagged |