April is fast coming to a close and I want to share a few updates and a rather interesting photo walk.
I had the opportunity to document the 24th annual Civil War reenactment held at Neshaminy Park in Bensalem, Pa. I brought two lenses, a 40mm f/2.8 and the 70-200mm f/4. Let me tell you that there is a lot to love with both lenses. This year the battle of Mine Run 1863 was chosen for reenactment. Sorry, I’ve not as yet Googled the information on this battle. If you happen to know, feel free to leave a history lesson in the comment section. I chatted with two women representing the widows of the Civil War and spent time checking out the medical tent discussing triage strategies with a civil war battlefield physician. Also took a long look at a photo collage of soldiers who survived the war with amputations or disfiguring facial injuries and wondered how they managed with their disabilities post war. I’ve a love/hate opinion of reenactments. They are an amazing source of quality information about a time or event in history, yet I can’t help but think reenactments over romanticize brutal events in our history. Just my 0.2 cents on the matter.
Now it is time to look at pretty pictures:
The full set of photos:
I run here, I run there…
This weekend I am heading to Washington DC to participate in the inaugural Nike Women’s Half Marathon on Sunday April 28th. The following Sunday, May 5th, I am running the 2013 Broad Street 10 miler – a race I am so looking forward to completing. A few weeks later, on June 15th I’m registered to run the 2013 Half Sauer Half Kraut Half Marathon in Pennypack Park. I sometimes wonder how I manage to keep smiling with all the training miles needed to maintain a fitness level to complete these distance runs. In addition, I’ve been dealing with a sudden case of foot numbness which will require orthotic inserts to (hopefully) correct this annoying issue.
On the blogging front – I still need to post race recaps for 2013 Yeungling Anthem Half Marathon, Virginia Beach and Cherry Blossom 10 miler in Washington, DC. I have all the photos and information read to go, I just need to finish the darn posts.
So, it is a bit busy at chez Tania at the moment; but I will work on keeping you all in the loop
Have been busy with work, travel and a half marathon in Virginia Beach. I didn’t really train for this Half and was ever so happy to complete the course with a sort of acceptable time of 2:14:00. Honestly, I had no idea how I would fare in this run since I made the decision to stop boot camp the month prior to this run. Brilliant move, girl.
As you can see in the short FaceBook video below, I survived the run and was very, very happy to share the news:
I’ve gone back to bootcamp fitness training and have adding more miles of running per week in anticipation of two big runs in April; The DC Cherry Blossom 10 miler and Nike Women’s Half Marathon. Also, the first Sunday in May is reserved for the awesome Philadelphia Broad Street Run where I am looking to PR.
The 2013 Philadelphia Flower Show this year showcased the best of Britain. During my visit, I took a few hundred photos of the exhibits and found perhaps a dozen that actually look like I know how to work a camera.
In a nutshell, I’ve been goofing off the past few weeks and have found myself behind in posting on the blog. No worries though as I have some amazing content to share and plan to catch up on my posts this week.
One final note, an awesome reader of this blog is celebrating his birthday on March 30th and has made the following request:
For my birthday, Tania, I ask that you perform a random act of kindness to someone.
I would also like you to pray, read your Bible, or otherwise get close to God that day.
I will make sure to follow through on this request, Trevor.
It is with a heavy heart that I announce the sudden passing of my little Pomeranian named Tiny. Her journey here on earth ended around 10 this morning, in her bed with those she loved near. He passing was quick and painless – one moment she was standing, the next, she shook free from the surly bond of life and went running into eternity.
In a few days, Tiny would have reached her 15th birthday. A great age for a little dog. In August, Xrays revealed an enlarged heart and liver along with a twist in her esophagus. It was soon after that her health started to decline rapidly and changes in her baseline personality became more apparent. She was my constant shadow over the years. However, last night she stopped following me simply sitting motionless in the living room staring at nothing in particular; she did not react when I called her name or touched her. I knew then her time was short yet was not prepared for how little time was left.
Took the lens out for a test drive at Longwood Garden conservatory in the midst of Orchid Extravaganza. I set the f-stop at 2.8 and strolled around the conservatory snapping pictures. The lens is nicknamed ‘pancake’ for its compact size in comparison to other prime lenses. Though its size makes it less obtrusive for street photography, it does look a bit silly when paired with a hefty dSLR. However, I did feel more comfortable photographing people with this lens then with any of my other lenses.
The photos I captured during my conservatory walkabout were anything other than silly. The lens was quick to focus and did well in the variable lighting of the conservatory. I did notice some slight vignetting along the edges of the photos. The bokeh is excellent for this lens as it is a f/2.8. The focal length of 40mm gives slightly more area for composition, however, I was shooting with a cropped sensor camera. To get a better appreciation of this focal length, I need to slap this lens on my Rebel SLR and go for another photowalk.
All the photos shown were taken with the Canon 40mm f/2.8 and uploaded to Flickr via LightRoom. I did not apply any LR edits the photos, what you see is precisely what I photographed with this lens. Feel free to click on the photos and examine the images in full resolution.
This lens retails about US$150 at Amazon.com making this a reasonably priced prime lens to add to your collection. This lens would be a great addition to your full frame dSLR as its 40mm focal length close matches the 35mm full frame sensor. The compact size and light weight of this lens makes it a great choice for street photography or fun photo walks.
I’m quite happy to with my purchase of this lens and look forward to using this lens on a future full frame Canon dSLR.
The video biography takes a closer look at the mysterious street photographer, Vivian Maier and her posthumous rise to photographic acclaim.
If you have not had the chance to view her photos click on Vivian Maier Photography to view selected photos from her extensive portfolio. Trust me, every photo will draw you into her world. I was hooked with the first photo and continue to be awed her work.
Vivian Maier was and always will be a mystery. She completely sublimated her raw talent it was only after her death that the world became aware of her talent. Her photos, negatives, and undeveloped film rolls were auctioned off and the purchaser soon ‘discovered’ Vivian Maier.
Every time I view her work, I cannot help the disquieting reality that she did not benefit from her talent. She gave her photography passion everything she had, yet never allowed her work to support her. As her photos inspire an increasing numbers of photographers today, I can only imagine the impact her trailblazing talent could have had on photography and the perception of women photographers back in the day. We cannot undo the past, just learn from it and hopefully improve.
If you happen to live in the Northeast section of United States then snow is definitely in your immediate future. Why not take the opportunity to grab a photo or two of this weekend winter wonderland? To help you take better snow photos, I found a great video from Gavin Hoey Photo Training that takes a look a few top snow photography tips.
Wow! It’s February already and time is flying by. I want to give a big THANK YOU to everyone who participated in my blog survey in January. I took the opportunity to begin reviewing the data during the power outage during the Super Bowl game and hope to have a summary report of the responses by next week.
Recently, I’ve been toying around with the idea of creating my own camera obscura – commonly known as a Pinhole Camera. I’ve an idea to take long (months long) exposure of the sky in my backyard. Not sure how well it will work but it seems to be a cool photo project.
Of course the set up and results will be blogged here.
Speaking of long exposure photography – Cool Long Exposure Photography via Digital Rev:
What photo gear I invested in recently: B+W 77mm ND 3.0-1,000X with Single Coating (110)
It’s not January without scheduling a photowalk daytrip to the Big Apple – New York City.
This year Trish, Patience and I traveled to NYC with no particular plan outside of wandering around Times Square and taking photos as we go along. Fall marathon training had taken up much of my free time leaving me itching for a good photowalk. What better place to scratch that itch than NYC. It is a glorious mass of skyscrapers, concrete, shady parks and 8 million people. The hustle of the crowds never intimidates me, on the contrary, I want to explore every nook and cranny of this city. Sadly, I only had a few hours – so I made the most of my time.
David Hockenys explores the idea of camera obscuras being used 400 years ago to create masterpieces we appreciate today. I love the idea that cameras,even in a rudimentary form, were allowing artists to capture the world around them in exquisite detail. I’m so fascinated that they too were capturing the light.
The video is 43 minutes long and wanders into weeds for a bit, but it is well worth your time if you have an interest in photography and art.
H/T: Neocon for sharing this video.
After watching this video, I was reminded of a book I read over a year ago. GhostWalk written by Rebecca Stott which looks forward and backward in time tracing the pattern of alchemy, good glass, and murder. Issac Newton searched for truth in light with his glass prisms, centuries later photographers continue that search with our prisms constructed of lenses, electronics and metal.
This is a great book to read over a cold and snowy weekend.