Stephen
Washburn

Gazing into the future

Gazing into the future

Camera: Nikon Coolpix S6
Exposure: 1/250 sec at f/3.0
Focal Length: 5.8mm
ISO: 93
Flash: Did not fire

In my Photography ‘announcement’ post I said that most of the photos I was going to start sharing wouldn’t have any post-processing. So of course the very next photo I share does. Its not much, all I did was utilize one of the built-in Lightroom filters/presets: Old Polar. When I first looked at the photo I was happy with it as is, but then I decided to play around with the built-in options, and once I selected this one I couldn’t go back. Without the preset the photo is a bit too uniform - the result of the borderline fog that was present when the photo was taken I think. The longer I look at it the more its becoming one of my all-time favorites.

My favorite thing about it is the subject. This was taken a few days before our 1st wedding anniversary, while we were in Fort Bragg, CA celebrating. That year Northern California saw one of the worst storms in years, and there were power outages all throughout the region. Unfortunately Fort Bragg is rather remote, so with the power out there weren’t many restaurants open and the few that were had some significant limitations imposed on their menu (no gelato at the Italian restaurant, an absolute tragedy if you ask Lindsey). It also meant no hot water in the hotel although the gas powered fireplace ensured we weren’t freezing. Power outage aside it was a great trip and we really enjoyed the area, so much so that we went back five years later for our 6th anniversary.

Looking at the expression on Lindsey’s face as she stares out at the ocean makes me wish desperately for a time machine so that I could go back and ask her what she’s thinking or to tell her about everything we’ve seen and done since then. Until someone invents that though, I’ve decided to believe she’s imagining what our future will be like. It certainly hasn’t been easy, but its been an amazing ride.

And its not showing any signs of slowing down.

Photography

Shooting in Hawaii

I have a lot of photos I’ve taken over the last 8 years that I’ve never shared anywhere. This has partly been due to a lack of a good library system, and partly due to not wanting to publish my favorite photos to someone else’s website. Lightroom1 has addressed the former, and as I’ve been writing more regularly here on my own website, I realized I had a solution to the latter.

My plan is to post the photos periodically, but in no particular order. I actually posted the first one a few weeks ago: Warning. Initially most of them will probably be shots that I’m happy with exactly as they came out of the camera with almost no post-processing. This is not because I have something against post-processing. It is because I don’t really know what I’m doing when it comes to post-processing, so if the photo didn’t look pretty good to me raw out of the camera, it probably didn’t get flagged to be shared. My hope is to learn more about post-processing and start to do some of that as well. I’ve already learned about correcting white-balance and I’m shooting in RAW to maximize the potential changes I can make.

Some of the photos might make for good desktop backgrounds so please feel free to send me a message on Facebook, Twitter, or via email if you’re interested in that. Also, I’m looking to improve, so if you have any feedback, please feel free to let me know that as well. Ultimately though I’m posting these for myself more than anyone else.

I want to spend more time creating and less time consuming.

  1. In conjunction with some other software that creates a relatively convoluted system that I might write about at some point.

Warning

Warning

Camera: Canon EOS REBEL T2i
Exposure: 1/60 sec at f/5.6
Focal Length: 135mm
ISO: 400
Flash: Did fire

On our vacation to Hawaii a few years ago we got to tour a World War II submarine while visiting Pearl Harbor. Before we left on the trip, I rented a Canon EOS Rebel T2i from LensRentals.com and had it scheduled to be delivered to us on Oahu. I took some of my favorite pictures during the tour and with that camera.

This has been my desktop background for awhile now and I think it works pretty well for that purpose. If you’d like a copy to use as a desktop background feel free to send me a message on twitter or app.net (I’m @stephenwashburn on both services).

5 months

5 months old

Why I love sports: Subtlety

I’m not sure this can be called “reviving a series” if I only ever posted one. But since its been over six months since I posted that, this is my attempt at revival.


Even the most ardent non-sports fan knows its the big flashy plays that capture our attention. The slam dunk in basketball, the long touchdown reception in football, or the puck flying past the goalie in hockey. ESPN has built an empire on sharing those plays with us in condensed form every night. They have even capitalized on the shortest form of communication available today - the hashtag - with #SCTop10. Its not their fault of course, they’re simply leveraging the short attention span that is so prevalent in today’s culture.

While I enjoy these plays as much as the next fan1 what I really love about sports is when you are watching closely enough to see the subtle play that happened before the flashy one. The subtle but convincing shoulder and head fake that the wide receiver used to get the cornerback to turn his hips the wrong way, leaving him out of position and unable to make a play on the pass. The ball fake accompanied by a player lifting his pivot foot almost off the floor which puts the defender so far out of position that theres an easy step-through and dunk. Or the hockey player who holds onto the puck for a brief second longer than the defender expects, while simultaneously shifting his weight so that he rotates around the puck putting himself in a perfect position to send a pass through the newly vacated passing lane.

These are the plays that never make SportsCenter except as throw away lead-ins to the actual highlight, but these are the plays that make me want to watch 162 baseball games, 82 basketball and hockey games, and 16 football games. I can see the highlight reel plays on the highlight reel…

  1. Assuming of course that its MY team, or at least not AGAINST my team.