Kodak Ektachrome Returns

kodak-ektachrome

Film lovers rejoice, Kodak brings back 35mm Ektachrome.  To be honest, I’ve never used this film and am excited to give it a go.  I’ve had 2 rolls of expired Ektachrome in my freezer (below) for the past year and will be shooting it this year with hopefully a fresh roll as well.

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Photography Merit Badge

Canon 40D * EF-24-105mm f/4.0L * ISO 100 * 1/320 seconds * f/4.0

I was asked recently to work with 10 boys to help them earn their photography merit badge.  I’ve always looked up to the boy scout program, I received my Eagle on my 13th birthday and am grateful for that opportunity.  After spending about 40 minutes with the scouts about the techniques of photography they chose a project and off they went.  About a week later I caught up with two of the boys and found they hadn’t worked on their project.  I invited them to go on a photowalk with me to the Ogden Utah Union Station.

They had such a great time they are wanting to do another photowalk.  My first photowalk was with Thomas Hawk in San Francisco.  I really like getting out for photowalks, it’s a great way to improve your skills and just have fun.  I’ve included a few of my favorites from the walk, check out the full gallery here

Canon 40D * EF-24-105mm f/4.0L * ISO 100 * 1/60 seconds * f/4.0
Canon 40D * EF-24-105mm f/4.0L * ISO 100 * 1/640 seconds * f/8.0

Black and White Portrait

Canon 40D * EF-24-105mm f/4.0L * ISO 100 * 1/125 second * f/9.0

I setup my studio in my basement last week and wanted to practice on some new lighting techniques.  I was able to get some good results of my wife and daughter.  I’ve been playing around with black and white photos lately and am pleased with the results.  I used a Adobe Lightroom preset that a fellow photog gave me that I really like.  I included a diagram of my light setup below.

Photowalking Utah – Hill Aerospace Museum

Last weekend our Photowalking Utah event was held at the Hill Aerospace Museum.  I’ve been there a few times and was excited to get back.  I wasn’t able to stay long but I was able capture a few images.  We had about 50 people attend and from what I hear we had quite a few new comers.  Hopefully they will be back.  Visit our flickr group here.

Canon 40D * EF-24-105mm f/4.0L * ISO 100 * 1/2 second * f/4

Canon 40D * EF-24-105mm f/4.0L * ISO 100 * 1/20 second * f/4

Canon 40D * Sigma 12 – 24mm * ISO 800 * 1/13 second * f/5.6

Canon 40D * EF-24-105mm f/4.0L * ISO 1000 * 1/50 second * f/4

Thelma

Canon 40D * EF-24-105mm f/4.0L * ISO 100 * 1/1600 second * f/4

Today’s photo was taken at a small cemetery near Afton Wyoming.  What caught my attention was the backwards “9” that was carved for the year 1899, 1900 & the date Oct 29. This girl was just 1 year old, I’m sure it was difficult loosing a child at that age.

Motivation

I received news today from my work that I was the winner in three out of five categories in our yearly photo contest.  We were only allowed to enter in three categories, I had a hard time narrowing it down to just three photos so I had my wife make the final decision for me.

The timing for the news couldn’t have come at a better time.  I’ve been in a rut lately and haven’t felt that my work is inspiring.  Getting word that people like your work is a great motivator, it has taught me a valuable lesson today.  For quite a while now I have been a “casual observer” of other photographers work.  By casual observer I mean quickly looking through their work and moving on to the next post in my RSS reader.  Well, I’m going to be changing a few things.  My goal it to let others know when their work is inspiring to me and hopefully it will keep them motivated to spread the word to others and hopefully eventually back to me.

A buddy of mine Rich Legg posted on his blog last week an article called “Blogging Motivation“.  He discusses receiving emails from his readers and how it motivates him to continue sharing his passion for photography.

If you have a passion for photography please let others know if their work is inspiring to you.

Human Statue of Liberty

I”m not the type that forwards emails along that have been passed all over the internet but I received this amazing photo from a good friend that I just sat and stared at and thought I would share on my blog. With a little investigation on www.snopes.com it appears to be legit so I feel pretty safe sharing the details here.

Details are below but I wanted to mention that what amazed me about this photo was the shear number of people involved and the fact that it was taken in 1918. There weren’t any two way radios or cell phones to communicate to everyone on the field and I’m sure the guys at the top of the photo (a quarter mile away) were wondering when the picture was going to be taken. 

During the WW I years, Arthur S. Mole and John D. Thomas made some incredible human pictures by using thousands of sailors or soldiers in uniform to create images.

The displayed photograph of a “human Statue of Liberty,” formed by 18,000 posed soldiers, was taken in July 1918 at Camp Dodge, Iowa, as part of a planned promotional campaign to sell war bonds during World War I:

On a stifling July day in 1918, 18,000 officers and soldiers posed as Lady Liberty on the parade [drill] grounds at Camp Dodge. [This area was west of Baker St. and is currently the area around building S34 and to the west.] According to a July 3, 1986, story in the Fort Dodge Messenger, many men fainted — they were dressed in woolen uniforms — as the temperature neared 105°F. The photo, taken from the top of a specially constructed tower by a Chicago photography studio, Mole & Thomas, was intended to help promote the sale of war bonds but was never used.

The design for the living picture was laid out at the drill ground at Camp Dodge, situated in the beautiful valley of the Des Moines River. Thousands of yards of white tape were fastened to the ground and formed the outlines on which 18,000 officers and men marched to their respective positions.

In this body of soldiers are any hundreds of men of foreign birth — born of parents whose first impression of the Land of Freedom and Promise was of the world’s greatest colossus standing with beacon light at the portal of a nation of free people, holding aloft a torch symbolic of the light of liberty which the statue represents. Side by side with native sons these men, with unstinted patriotism, now offer to sacrifice not only their liberty but even life itself for our beloved country.

The day on which the photograph was taken was extremely hot and the heat was intensified by the mass formation of men. The dimensions of the platting for the picture seem astonishing. The camera was placed on a high tower. From the position nearest the camera occupied by Colonel Newman and his staff, to the last man at the top of the torch as platted on the ground was 1,235 feet, or approximately a quarter of a mile. The appended figures will give an adequate idea of the distorted proportions of the actual ground measurements for this photograph:

Base to shoulder: 150 feet.
Right arm: 340 feet.
Widest part of arm holding torch: 12-1/2 feet.
Right thumb: 35 feet.
Thickest part of body: 29 feet.
Left hand (length): 30 feet.
Tablet in left hand: 27 feet.
Face: 60 feet.
Nose: 21 feet.
Longest spike of head piece: 70 feet.
Flame on torch.: 600 feet.
Torch and flame combined: 980 feet.
Number of men in flame of torch: 12,000
Number of men in torch: 2,800
Number of men in right arm: 1,200
Number of men in body, head and balance of figure only: 2,000

Total: 18,000

Incredible as it may seem there are twice the number of men in the flame of the torch as in the whole remaining design, while there are eight times as many men in the arm, torch and flame as in all the rest of the figure. It will be noted that the right thumb is five feet longer than the left hand, while the right arm, torch and flame is eight times the length of the body.

Information on the background of this image and similar photographs by Arthur S. Mole and John D. Thomas:

Mole and Thomas spent a week or more preparing for these immense works, which were taken from a 70 or 80 foot tower with an 11 by 14 inch view camera. When the demand for these photographs dropped in the 1920s, Mole returned to his photography business in Zion.