Monthly Archives: April 2011

Last of four riders accepts challenge to ride in Beyond Naked film

The documentary film I’m currently making passed a milestone yesterday. With two months go until the Fremont Solstice Parade, we found the fourth and final rider willing to accept our challenge to ride naked in the parade. Emily Resling’s father died suddenly last year, and the joy vanished from her life. She hopes that being part of this film will help her get it back. So do I.

Shallow thinking has it's limits

I was in Portland this weekend, celebrating my birthday with my wife Lara. We spent some time discovering great little places like M Bar. I was carrying my iPhone 4 and my Canon 60D. When I had my “serious photographer” hat on, I shot with the 60D. When I was just fooling around, I shot with the iPhone. And guess what? I like a lot of the iPhone snaps better.

Here’s a couple of photos that illustrate the point. Exhibit A is a photo I took with my 60D through the window of a bar (consciously trying to make a good picture). Exhibit B is shot with iPhone, and I was just messing around (subconsciously trying to make a good picture). Which do you like better?

Exhibit A:

Exhibit B:

I like ’em both for different reasons, but if I had to choose between the two, I’d pick B any day. There’s just a lot more going on that’s interesting to look at. A is a quick-read; B is a deep read. It’s the thinker’s pick. And when it comes to photography, I like thinking deep.

Problem is, for some reason, whenever I have a 2.8 lens on my DSLR, I think shallow. Both pictures present different challenges: A is easy to compose, but harder to get critical focus. B is a piece of cake to focus, but much harder to compose and pick just the right moment to snap the picture.

This is a reminder to me that all that camera gear is supposed to work for you, not think for you. What I hope to take away from this is a reminder that there’s a big aperture dial on all DSLRs. And it’s important to use the big numbers as often as the little ones.