Heck, I didn't even make it to the camping site before launching the drone. As I drove up Ice House Road, heading to the reservoir, I decided to pull over and get an aerial shot of the surroundings. I loved the big puffy clouds and endless trees.
My family and my wife's extended family and friends, had been camping for 5 days before I was able to join them. I arrived on Saturday afternoon and tried as hard as I could to slow down. If you know me, you know that I move at a fast pace, and it is not easy for me to slow down and relax. One way that I do relax is when I break out the camera and capture photos. This allows me to slow down and take in the scenes around me.
This was one of the first photos that I took at the reservoir. The water level is much lower than normal due to the drought that we are suffering from in California, and there is new vegetation growing on the extended shoreline.
The next morning, I woke up early to take the dog for a walk. As we started our walk, I looked out over the reservoir and saw this perfectly still water with these great reflections. I walked straight back to the camp, grabbed my camera and started shooting. I almost didn't turn around for my camera, but I am really glad that I did. This was the only time that I saw the water so still and really like this photo. The dog was not happy, but I made it up to him with a really long walk a little later. (Photographer's note: I decided to include the boat in the photo for a couple of reasons. It helps show the scale of the rocks and trees and the red color really pops from the bottom left of the image.)
Later in the afternoon, the overcast skies had cleared and we had more of those really nice clouds. I decided to put the Phantom 3 back up in the air to get some wide aerial shots.
Just for fun, I decided to rotate the camera of the drone straight down on our beach setup.
On the second day, I did a little impromptu photo class for my nephew's girlfriend, Julie. She really loves photography, and it was fun to share the photo passion with her.
As part of the lesson, I decided to get my nephew, Shane, into the fun. I was showing Julie how to use an external flash to create directional light. Using Shane as our model, I moved him next to one of the white camper shells, had him look towards the camper and bounced the flash off of the white wall. This was taken in broad daylight, but I used the manual settings of the camera to darken the scene. (Canon 5D Mark III, 24-105mm lens, ISO 100, f/13, 1/200 sec, Canon 600 EX-RT flash in TTL +1/2 stop)
On Monday, I decided to take some risks with the Phantom 3. I figured that with all of my experience flying the drone, that I could shoot video of the kids on their wakeboard from the back of the boat. I had a blast following them, shooting video, as we motored around the reservoir.
Late in the afternoon, on our last day at Union Valley, I saw this white reflection on the water. I had to move to a different location to find the source of that reflection. There was this huge cumulous cloud out in the distance.
As night fell, Julie asked me if we could do some night shots. And you know that I LOVE night photography! I went to my car and grabbed the Gitzo tripod with the Acratech ballhead and cable release from my trunk.
It was time to capture some night shots of the AMAZING sky!
|(Canon 5D Mark III, 24-105mm lens at 24mm, ISO 2500, f/4, 41 sec)|
|(Canon 5D Mark III, 24-105mm lens at 24mm, ISO 6400, f/4, 20 sec)|
This is one of those photos can can not tell the full story. As we stood there, waiting for the camera to capture each image, it was so mesmerizing. Looking up at all those stars, so bright and colorful, it didn't even look real.
If you are interested in purchasing any camera equipment, please click here to go to B&H Photo, as I get a referral from them if you enter this way. I would really appreciate that.
_________________________________________________________________________________And also, remember that you and your friends can enter your email address at the top right of this blog to get an email any time I write a new blog post, and my monthly newsletter .