The Ones You Meant to Take….

You have the equipment, you have it with you constantly but you don’t take the pic!!! The thought goes thru your head – “ Ugh…. I should have taken that shot”. One has to hate that when it happens.  It’s one thing when you miss a fast moving type shot, those tend to repeat themselves on many occasions or you get a different one but better….. Smile

OR… why is it, when one heads out on a vacation, takes a bunch or a LOT of photos but somehow, you see this “gap” in your photo sequencing.  It might have been that sunset, that candid, that still shot, whatever…. but somehow you remember that there was this shot you missed?

OR even worse…. you either “see” this photo or think about a particular shot and say to yourself “You know… I should take a pic of that someday”…. and someday just never shows up.

Today’s lifestyle (at least in the city I’m in, and the career path that I’ve chosen as an IT Consultant), it seems like it’s go go go all the time.  I don’t know if, because of the life style, that we sometimes deliberately make ourselves busy so we have an out when something doesn’t get done Smile  We don’t allow ourselves to get “bored”, I almost think sometimes, because deep down inside there’s this fear of “now what do I do?”.  I know a lot of people who would simply be lost (maybe they already are… Smile) if this “time gap” suddenly opened.  They don’t have hobbies to pursue OR worse, have no urge to even look for something to do.  For me and my wife, actually, we are at the opposite end of the spectrum.  We really are busy – we both have jobs, we have our real estate, AND we have our hobbies.  And we have the grandkids, of course Smile  For us, taking the time has be a very deliberate scheduled event.  Of course, the other way, is to “shift” stuff around…..  The ripple effect, of course, is that later, you will be busier Smile

Unfortunately, for me, I’m not at that point where I can gain time by not working Sad smile  As much as I dream about it, it’s gonna be a while.  Sort of like winning the lottery – now there’s a dream…..

Continuing on – I live in a city that has a pretty neat downtown area.  It’s not as big a many but, like many cities, it’s got it’s own unique skyline.  What’s interesting about this, is that when I first got on of those Instamatic type cameras back in about 1969-1970’ish, I took a picture of downtown Calgary (I still haven’t found that in my old albums….), but here I am in 2013 and I haven’t really taken another one, per se!!!  Actually up until I started back in a year or so ago.  I’ve taken a lot of photos since then but still….  Even when I was deep into photography, despite the fact that I did a lot of landscape photography, it seems like I didn’t include the Calgary skyline for some reason. Pictures of downtown sure  – events, places, etc.- sure.  Skyline?  Nada….  Did I think about that?  Yeah, of course.  Did I have a camera?  For the most part – yes.  I think that I’ve, for the most part, anyway, had some sort of a camera.  When we had our oil and gas boom back in the 70’s and those high rises started to boogey up – now there was an opportunity (if one could remember to do this…) to get a sequence of photos of Calgary’s growing skyline.  I’m sure someone out there may have done that, but not me….

Yesterday… I decided to change that Smile  Despite the fact that the flood has stopped me from working AND I’m on a serious path of catch-up on a ton of things, I decided to take a break and go get a photo or two of the Calgary skylineSmile  Now, in saying this, I had to stay away from anything close to downtown as it’s still an emergency zone, AND I need to be up fairly high, the location I picked was a park called Nose Hill. I actually live quite close to this park.  It’s an environmental park to boot – no development, in other words.  It actually covers a huge span of space in North Calgary.

Nose Hill Sign

The main thing here, is that it’s literally the highest area in Calgary.  I live in this area, and to say it has it’s ups and downs…. Smile  It’s also high enough that one doesn’t have to walk very far to get a view of the skyline with no power lines or other “things” getting in the way.  It was about a 10 minute walk (all uphill of course…) to get to a place that I was happy with.

A couple of pics of the terrain :

Nose Hill WalkwayNose Hill_north

There are quite a few places to enter the park and it’s surprisingly quiet as one is high enough above the city to get away from the noise of the city.  Quite peaceful, actually.  When I stop to think about this a bit – in this section of the park – it’s been a long time since I’ve been here.  We take the grandkids for walks in this park when we babysit, but from a different spot.  Our home literally backs onto one of the walkways Smile

Anyway… I wanted to also try my Promaster carbon fibre tripod out with my GX1 and 45-200mm and see how it actually worked in the field.  I knew the ball head I got for it wasn’t quite adequate for that bigger lens, but it would be adequate for the shots I was planning.  This is looking almost directly south:

Nose Hill_skyline_downtownNose Hill_big_zoon 

There was a bit of a haze over the city but all things considered, not too bad.  More important – I now have the shot Smile  What I’ve also been trying to do, is see how my tripod works with my National Geographic sling bag.  I’ve been using this bag specifically for the GX1 for the last little while and so far, it actually works quite well.  I initially got this bag for carrying multiple cameras and that may still be the case, but then I got the GX1, and that thought ended real quick Smile  Especially when I added the extra zoom.

NG Explorer and tripod

This was also a pretty good test for me using a tripod. In the past, there were very things I did that involved me or required me to use a tripod.  Studio things/portraits, of course, but landscapes, etc.  very rarely.  AND, back then, tripods were big and heavy – the smaller ones were pretty well useless once you stick an SLR on them.  Today’s technology, though, has allowed for a reasonably sturdy tripod in a pretty small package.  This ProMaster and ball head combination would never hold a DSLR, and it JUST barely holds the GX1 with the 45-200 (it’s fine with the 14-42), but it  sorta gets the job done.  When I did the big zoom on my skyline shot, I actually had to hold the lens steady, as the ball head screw didn’t secure the camera steady enough (this is the ProMaster2 ball head).  From the setup standpoint, this is a 5 section tripod with twist :-)locks.  They work really fast  Smile  romI wanted a fast set up and take down when I initially started looking for a tripod.  From a weight standpoint – it’s light enough that in the event I needed to carry this rig for a while, it would be light enough that it wouldn’t be an issue.  So far, so good.

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About gkamitomo
IT Busines Analyst

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