Welcome!

Hello and welcome to my blog and my first blog post! For me, this is simultaneously exciting and strange. People who know me well probably wouldn’t think of me as a blogger. The old me would have said, “No way dude, that’s way too hipster!” I know…..very closed. In addition, words don’t easily flow from brain to fingertips for me. Writer’s block is a regular occurrence.

But if photography has taught me anything in the short time since I picked up a camera, it’s that you have to grow a pair and be out of your comfort zone. So I’m hoping this opens new doors for me, challenges me, encourages me, and gives me a means of expressing myself, if not articulately, hopefully visually with my photos. Check out the about section above for more information.

So with that out of the way, I thought I’d dedicate my first blog to one of my first, and I guess, most successful photograph to date (seen above). This will also be my first submission into The Daily Post weekly Photo Challenges, this one under “Blur“. I definitely have some catching up to do.

I left home that Sunday on my bike during the harsh midday light. But I was determined to test out the new camera and take some shots around home. My shots as you would have imagined weren’t too exciting. But they were a start.

Gardiner Expressway Remnants
Remnants of the Gardiner Expressway east of Carlaw.

Don Valley Trail

After having dinner with my sister downtown, I hopped on my bike and headed home, east along Queen street. As I passed the Queen Street Viaduct, I decided to turn back around, lock up the bike and give it one more go, and I was glad I did.

I remember it being quite windy and cold as I set up my tripod. The voice in my head was saying, “Just hurry up and take a shot and go home.” But luckily I stayed patient and waited for that decisive moment.

The initial composition I had in mind was to snap a quick shot of a streetcar as it went underneath the bridge. But since the streetcar was moving too quickly, the result was quite blurry. After a few more unsatisfying attempts, it occurred to me that the motion and blurriness of the streetcar would actually make for a much more dynamic photo. So instead of increasing my shutter speed to achieve a sharp streetcar, I decreased. After a few more attempts and trial and error, which grew increasingly frustrating as I had to wait in the cold for another streetcar to come by (thank you Nextbus.com), I settled on a shutter speed of 6 seconds. I had to bump the fstop to f22 to keep it from overexposing.

As I waited, two streetcars luckily entered my frame at about the same time. I quickly released the shutter and hoped for the best. The eastbound streetcar really created a strong leading line into the frame from the bottom left corner. In post processing, I kept the white balance on the bluer side as I wanted the image to feel as cold as I did standing there.

After posting the final product into the blogTO flickr pool, I got a text from a friend telling me that it made their photo of the day! Not bad for a rookie! The feedback I got overall from family and friends was quite positive. Needless to say, it was really inspiring and motivating and added fuel to the fire.

RD

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