3rd Annual Pullman Firefighters – 2019 Fireman’s Ball

On Saturday, February 9th, 2019 the 3rd Annual Fireman’s Ball was held at the SEL Event Center in Pullman, Washington. This event is put on by the Pullman Firefighters to raise funds to help individuals who are affected by emergencies.

I was asked to take photographs for the event. It was set up in two areas. One was to do “couples” photos and the other was just candid shots from the event.

My setup was the solid black background hanging free. It was illuminated with two light boxes. I didn’t have as much light as I would have liked. I didn’t use a flash just the light boxes. I used my Canon 6D with a 50mm prime f/1.2 lens. I wanted to ensure I had a good depth of field so I used f/8. Even with a speed of 1/60th of a second for the shutter I was forced to increase the ISO setting to 1000. Way higher than I would have liked but the best I could do with the other settings and the lack of lighting. I just need more light boxes or other lighting without the flash. I have been unhappy with the flash near the camera due to the shadowing I get on my backgrounds. Maybe I just need the umbrella flash system. Nonetheless they are not terrible but they are not as sharp as I would have liked.

This was also the first time to do real “couples” photos. So I see some things I would do differently next time. I allows people to get into their own poses. I didn’t scrutinize anything but I think I will give some helpful tips for the next time around and stage people better.

For the candid shots I was in a darker room. I used both the Canon 70D and 6D camera. The 70D had a 18-135mm zoom. The 6D had the 50mm prime lens. Both cameras had external flashes with a light diffuser. Both had ISO settings into the 1000-1600 range. I think overall the candid shots turned out as good as I was going to get them with the lighting at hand. Again I think I could have done better with my flash usage and I will work on that in the future. I tried to make my way around to the tables and get some candid couples shots there too.

The event went very well. Lots of people showed up and they raised money for the cause.

Wakeboarding on the Snake River

On June 2nd, 2018 I went to the Snake River with a friend for a photoshoot of him and one of his friends wakeboarding. This was my first opportunity to shoot action photos on the water.

The weather was nice and the sun was setting. This caused some troubles depending on the direction the boat was heading at the time of the photos.

In all I shot over 600 photos. One problem I had was when my F-stop was too low and I had auto-focus on, then I would sometimes get the towrope as the focal point and the rider was blurred. So I made some changes to get better shots. I picked out 65 photos that I liked.

I decided to try three different lenses. I used my ultra-wide angle. I picked a couple of those for this gallery. My stock 18-135mm lens. And my 70-200 lens. Most of the photos I chose happened to come from the 70-200mm lens.

I had a lot of fun going out on the water and it was great to get to use my camera. I hope to get out some more and get better at the photos.

Pete Martin’s Bronze Star Ceremony

This morning I had the opportunity to shoot photos at a ceremony for retired Coroner Peter J. Martin who had received a Bronze Star during the Vietnam War. Unfortunately, due to circumstances outside of his control, he was never officially awarded his Bronze Star, until today. Alfie Alvarado, Director, Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs, was in Pullman, Washington and officially pinned his Bronze Star. Larry Alcantara, with the Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs, read the information about what Martin did to earn the Bronze Star. This was a wonderful ceremony and well deserved.

The room was at the SEL event center. I used my Canon 70D camera along with my Canon 70-200mm f/2.8l IS II USM lens to capture the photos. I used a flash to bounce off the wall behind me in order to get a little more light into the room.

All the photos were taken with f/4.5, 1/100 second shutter speed, and an ISO 800 setting. In spite of the crop factor the room was large enough for me to get some good photos of the ceremony.

Night and Sky Photos

Over the past several months I have been getting some photos of the night sky and other similar types of photos. I decided to take several of the photos and turn it into a post.

All the photos were taken with my Canon 70D camera. Most were taken using a tripod.

In the close up photo of the moon I used a Canon EF 70-200 f/2.8L with a 2x extender.

In the next set of moon photos I was traveling east on I90 just east of North Bend when I saw the moon over the top of the cascades. It was around four in the afternoon and it was still light outside. The moon was noticed by many people several pulled off I90 to take photos. Many of these photos were taken with the stock EF-S 18-135 lens, f/5.6, 20mm zoom.

To experiment with long exposure I went to Western Whitman County where I know about an abandoned farm house and out buildings. It was shortly before midnight and there was very little ambient light. I left the parking lights on my vehicle illuminated on the off-chance a vehicle were to happen down the gravel road at midnight. But the red lights from the vehicle cast a red light into the photos. The photos had an approximately 25 second exposure with settings of ISO800 f/5.6.

I have wanted to do some night sky photos to see the stars. I see so many incredible photos. This is the first time I did it where it turned out okay. I would not say they are the best. But they are okay. I am happy because something other than a black sky appeared. I also tried to get a long exposure photo with the vehicle and the stars in the background. I need to work on that a lot. But again, I am happy it was not all black.

The last photo was taken on Christmas day in Renton, Washington showing a white Christmas.

Photoshoot with Deputy Stevens

On Saturday afternoon I had a chance to ride along with Deputy Stevens from the Whitman County Sheriff’s Office.

We went to the WSU campus to do a couple photos of him with some of the campus in the background. We didn’t make it there until the sun was really setting. This causes some troubles with the backlighting and the lack of lighting for the foreground. I ended up shooting from a different angle so we didn’t get the campus as the backdrop as wanted.

I shot all the photos with my Canon 70D with a EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II.