Thursday, February 01, 2007

Above The Horizon

Canon EOS 20D with 10-22 @ 10mm ISO100

Canon EOS 20D with 70-200L @ 200mm ISO 100

Part two
Continuing east on Highway 22 in search of my next capture with the horizon growing brighter by the minute, I came upon a Sod Farm just off the highway on my right. I had spotted a sprinkler on wheels that travels over the ground bringing life to the sod that will end up in your front yard, resting in wait of a new growing season. I liked the silhouette it projected against the looming sunrise and pulled my truck in-to the field to capture more megapixels of this huge sprinkler that I could drive my truck under. The lead photo is one of approximately two dozen captures that I shot in various positions. You may have noticed by now that I seem to use my Canon 10-22 lens a lot. That is because I love the creativity I can achieve with this lens. I have owned various wide-angle lens over the years, but none as wide as this 10-22 zoom. I had read all the reviews on it before purchasing it and decided to go for it after much research. There are several reasons that I was hesitant, for one-the lens will only fit a SLR with a 1.6 crop ratio such as my Canon 20D. Therefore if I were to purchase a Canon 5D which has a full size sensor, the 10-22 will not fit it as the lens protrudes into the body to far and strikes the mirror. Therefore I will have to purchase another 1.6 ratio Canon when I upgrade my 20D in the near future. The second reason was the cost, however the results I am achieving with this lens has lessened the pain I felt when I purchased this lens.

If you have not used a extreme wide-angle lens before, your first results will be disappointing putting it mildly. The problem is that-yes this lens gives you that extreme wide view you so desire, however in doing so the lens also pushes everything away from you. To make your photos work you want to have something in the photo or as in this case-part of the sprinkler in your face so to speak that leads the viewer into the photo. In other words to achieve a three dimensional effect, you need to be up close and personal with part of your capture for this lens to perform. I am no more than 3 meters away from this sprinkler that stands five meters high-yet in my capture it appears to be much further away. Being as the sprinkler had no other objects around it for me to place in the foreground to achieve the DOF I wanted, I shot the photo on a angle to the sprinkler and used the left end of the sprinkler to takes you into the photo. The beauty of extreme wide angle lens is their extreme depth of field (DOF) . With any type of landscape photography as a rule it is important that everything is in focus. This lens allows that with ease. Place the lens on the infinity mark, stop the aperture down and you have no worries as to sharpness of the photo from near to far. In my last post, the hood of my truck that appears in the photo is within six inches of my camera and is completely in focus.

I had travelled only a few more miles and realized that I had run out of time as the sun insisted on clawing its way over the horizon ( Of course we all know the sun is not rising but that the earth is turning on its axis towards the sun). Being to late to find another willing subject for my 10-22 lens, I pulled over and placing my beanbag in the open window of my truck, I changed out my 10-22 for my 70-200L and shot the second capture above as the sun broke into view.

There is nothing really special about this second capture, however you might like to know that to get any bright object such as in this case that being the sun to give a star effect, you want to stop your lens down to a aperture of f16 or smaller. Also make sure to avert your eyes from looking directly into the sun when shooting photos of this type, as we all know the consequences of that. Actually there is a plus to this capture as I cropped the center out of it and placed it in the footer of my blog as you can see.

I am underway again with Siksika Territory just ahead where I will turn right near Gleichen, Alberta and cross the Bow River to the south on my way up to Arrowwood. If you are not familiar with the history of the Siksika Nation, it is worth checking out as it is of some importance in Canada's history. It is near Blackfoot Crossing deep in Sitsika Territory where the First Nations People came together with government officials in 1877 to make a treaty. This would become Treaty 7. This a topic for another day in one of my posts, as I plan on visiting and shooting photos in and around Blackfoot Crossing this summer.

For now the sun is above the horizon as I slow for the turn that will lead me to a crossing on the Bow River deep in Siksika Territory and hopefully more megapixel captures...Stay tuned

No comments yet