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Good ‘Ol Standby: The 50mm

January 30, 2007 by David Perry  
Filed under David Perry, Sports, Web/Camera Tech

I often advise amateurs who want an interchangeable lens camera to NOT buy the 50mm lens that often comes with it. The “normal” focal length lens isn’t nearly as useful as a room filling wide angle or a moderate telephoto. Well, the camera manufacturers have gotten the message in the last few years and are offering cheap, but slow zooms (say, maybe a 18mm to 85mm ) with their entry level single lens reflexes. They are of limited use indoors without flash, as the 85mm end usually has a f5.6 maximum aperture. But going against my own advice, I still have a 50mm f1.8 in the camera bag. My professional f2.8 80-200 and 17-35mm zooms sometimes aren’t fast enough. Which brings me to last Saturday’s swim meet:

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(Seth Broster, Tates Creek, winner of 100 yd. butterfly)
The Fayette County Public Schools Swim Meet was held at Transy. Normally, the skylights offer really great light, but not last Saturday, and not at 5pm with a thick cloud cover. I was pushing the limit of my Nikon D2-H, trying to shoot 1/250th at f.28 at 1250 ISO, and even THAT was yielding underexposed frames. I finally gave up and attached the 50mm 1.8. That yielded an action stopping 1/500th /sec. at 1.8 at 1250 ISO. Now, luckily, butterfly swimmers come up for air often and so this shot (above) was within a reasonable distance of the 50mm. The freesyle event photos weren’t so good. Of course, when action is difficult technically, you can always shoot reaction (bottom photo) with a slower, longer lens. (1/200th, ISO 1250, f2.8. 80-200 zoon at 145mm. Auto white balance.)

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(Kelsey Floyd, Tates Creek, winner of 100 yd. butterfly)
One other thing about the 50mm: if you don’t want to spring the big bucks for a maco closeup lens, try buying a closeup lens filter for the 50mm. Several of our staff photogs are doing just that. We never know when we will need macro capability for copying, nature, food, etc. in the field.

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Miami bound!

January 28, 2007 by Mark Cornelison  
Filed under Mark Cornelison

I gotta admit, I am looking forward to heading south to 80 degree temperatures since it is currenly 12 tonight in Lexington. Fresh off shooting the AFC Championship where the Colts beat the dreaded Patriots ( it was a fumble against Oakland) I am off to Miami for the Super Bowl!
I got a really  nice photo last week of Peyton Manning hugging his dad Archie! 070121coltspatssmc683
I’m sure I was not alone on the side I chose but I have  not seen anyone else run this photo yet! Nice to get one that not everyone else has! I will be shooting the Super Bowl from an elevated position with a long lens so hopefully I can represent the H-L well and get a few nice shots! Just hoping the rain holds off but as long as it’s warm I will live!

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Freedom’s Road

January 24, 2007 by Mark Cornelison  
Filed under Mark Cornelison

Some of you who know me know that I do some photography for John Mellencamp now and then. I got a call on January 18th around 7:00 pm asking if I could do a  photo shoot with John for the New York Times art section the next day at his house. Luckily my schedule allowed for it and off I went to Bloomington for the shoot! Always excited about doing stuff for John and his awesome wife Elaine I was  trying to get all my excited energy out of my system on the way up. I know if I went in there blowing up like a hard core fan it would probably not go over too well! I got to his house around 12:30 and was directed to go to his art studio to get set for the first shot. His art studio is really cool with his paintings all over the place including one that was about 20 feet tall and maybe 25 feet wide. I’m guessing that will not be leaving that studio anytime soon because of its size unless he breaks it down  to get it through the doors!  When John arrived I was ready to go. He said he had a few ideas of where he thought we should shoot and I had  few ideas myself.Blogmellencamp633jpg_1

Photo by Wendi Chitwood
As it turns out what I thought would be about an hour long shoot lasted over 3 hours. We went from his studio to his old house where I shot him with an old Chevy Nomad in the driveway, then off to his recording studio where he strapped on his telecaster and sang through his new song, SOMEDAY, on his Freedom’s Road album that came out yesterday (1/23/07). It was really cool to be sitting  there taking photos as he sang a song that had not even come out publicly yet!
Blog2
We ended the shoot with a few of him walking down the road with his
guitar case in some really nice light.  I’ve been shooting him now
since 2004 off and on and it gets more comfortable each time. I think
he has confidence in me that I will shoot good photos and make him look
good. We did a quick edit in his kitchen and I sent a selection of
photos to the New York Times
for their cover story on his new album and a photo or two will be used
in the Lexington Herald-Leaders Weekender Section this weekend! Hope
you enjoy the photos as much as I enjoyed taking them.

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Photo Count

January 17, 2007 by Janet Worne  
Filed under Blog

I was recently struck by a sobering thought. As of September 2006, I have been shooting pictures professionally for 25 years. A quarter of a century. And I actually started taking pictures earlier than that as an amateur. That’s a lot of pictures.

I wondered how many times I have pressed the shutter release on a camera in my lifetime. Even though there is probably no way to know for sure, I was obsessed to see if I could figure out even a vague estimate of what that number would be.

First I decided that 150 pictures per day is a reasonable average for a news photographer. Several of my colleagues agreed. Some days we shoot much less and other days we can shoot 300, 400 or more. With an average of 240 workdays a year over 25 years, I came up with 900,000 photographs. Then I rummaged through drawers, boxes and hard drives to figure out how many pictures I took outside of work and added that number to my earlier count. The grand total came to a whopping 940,420.

My next thought was, how long before I reach a million? By my calculations I should arrive at that number somewhere around May 2008. Actually I think it will be much sooner or I may have even passed it since I know I grossly underestimated my numbers. The count I arrived at was based on photos I could find or remember and I’m sure there were a lot of outtakes that landed on the cutting room floor or fell victim to the delete button.

Why does this matter? It doesn’t really. It just happens that today is one of those low-picture count days and this kind of exercise seemed like a fun thing to do.

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Basketball practice

January 12, 2007 by Mark Cornelison  
Filed under Mark Cornelison

Today was  a pretty cool day with a slow start. I started out at Keeneland where one of our features writers, Amy Wilson, was out and about trying to find this celebrity chef named Bobby Flay, I think. I jokingly told her I thought we were looking for Flavor Flav! Whoever we were looking for was not there though so we just hung at the Keeneland sales hoping he may appear but he didn’t so I bailed.

I went from there to the new UK practice facility where Tubby made some comments about Saturday’s game and then I toured the new facility shooting photos for a slide show you can see here!CLICK HERE!
I gotta say it is cool walking the halls where most people are not allowed too. Seeing things first. It’s definitely a perk! I don’t have the actual files at home with me so I am posting this thumbnail.

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Go check out the facility. Really cool. Makes you wish you had a private gym to go in whenever you want!

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