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September 2008 Archives

September 2, 2008

Disney Pic of the Week: Movie Set Sign

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

If there is one thing a Disney themepark has plenty of it's SIGNS. Signs telling you where you parked, what bus to take, when a show starts, who to see, and how to use the emergency bag in Mission: Space. There are humorous signs, serious signs, small signs, huge signs and purple road signs. So, this week's Disney Pic of the Week theme is (you guessed it) signs.

People tend to forget when they enter Disney's Hollywood Studios, they are entering one very large movie set. In essence, the backlot starts at the Studio's entrance. If you look at the signs, you'll get the feeling you are on a working set in almost every corner. This sign was across from the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular entrance.

A movie set sign across from the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
A movie set sign across from the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/80s, f/5.6, 200 ISO, +0.6 EV, 31mm Focal Length

Lisa and Barrie will be along on Thursday and Saturday showing you some of their favorite Disney signs.

September 3, 2008

Photography Vocabulary 102

Light Meter by Lisa K. Berton

There are accessories that help to complete a photographer's outfit and by outfit, I mean gear, and by gear I mean equipment. Get your wallets out because you'll want to go shopping after you finish reading this.

hoyauv.jpg
Filters - Predominantly used on SLRs both film and digital, filters can create an amazing range of effects. The most commonly used is the UV, which protects the lenses' glass from being scratched as well as keeping a blue/purple tint out of your photos. You may also want to get a Circular Polarizer which cuts out glare found on reflective surfaces such as glass, sand, snow, and my dad's bald head.


tripodslik.jpg
Tripod - If you're interested in shooting at night or doing long exposures you'll want to get yourself a tripod. This three-legged stand will keep your camera perfectly still. All cameras and tripods connect via a universal screw found on the tripod's mount. Tripods come a wide range of heights, weights, and certainly durability.


monopod.jpg
Monopod - Going on a safari? Shooting from the sidelines? Monopods take up less space than tripods do and are designed for the photog who is shooting with a super telephoto or high power zoom lens. Monopods attach to cameras the same way tripods do and also come in various heights, weights, and durability.


microfiber.jpg
Microfiber Cloth - Keep one handy to wipe fingers prints and nose grease off the LCD screen and particles from the lens. You can also use it on your glasses and sunglasses.


boomerangstrap.jpg
Neoprene Neck Strap - SLRs normally come with a neck strap that feels rough on your neck and doesn't help to support the weight of the camera. Neoprene neck straps are soft, sometimes textured, and help to alleviate stress on your neck. I personally recommend the Boomerang by Tamrac


card_wallet.jpg
Memory Card Wallet - Keep your memory cards safe and in a convenient location. You'll find both soft and hard cases available as well as waterproof ones. I have this one by LowePro.


You may also want to read my previous entry, Photography Vocabulary 101.

Product photo copyrights remain with the manufacturers: Hoya, Slik, Slik, Quantaray, Tamrac, and LowePro. Images are used for Educational Purposes.

September 4, 2008

Signs: Shave and a Haircut

Light Meter by Lisa K. Berton

This week's entry was extra difficult for me because I have a large sum of photographs of signs at Disneyland. Oy, the stress. Do I use this one? Is it not as funny as I think it is? How about this one? Maybe the readers haven't been to Disneyland and don't recognize it. What to do!? What to do?! I settled on just one, something that you'll easily identify whether or not you have been to my home away from home.

lkb_signs_rogerrabbit.jpg


September 6, 2008

Wish You Were Here!

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer


Mailing Center at Downtown Disney
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/80s shutter, f4.5, ISO 800

There is no such thing as a simple sign in Disney World. My Pic of the Week is the postal and shipping area in Disney's Wonderful World of Memories store at Downtown Disney. I'm notoriously bad at writing but this just makes me want to send someone a postcard!

What's In A Name

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

One of the first things I had to deal with when I first started using a digital camera was how to organize all the files I was creating every time I went out taking photographs. The camera manufacturers think their simple system of a strange prefix followed by a number is what anyone would ever need. Blah! After producing hundreds of image files, I ended up doing folders for each time which got even more chaotic.

When facing this ongoing problem, I first identified the need to name this files so I could easily sort them. I read how others were doing it. Many like to use some sort of descriptive name which includes a prefix of meaning (like WDW for Walt Disney World) followed by a date designation and a sequential number. I tried this type of system for awhile but found the prefix was a bit confusing for me and decided to use a standard prefix for all my photos. Here is what a typical name for one of my digital photo files looks like: STP_20080905_025.jpg. The prefix of STP stands for Scott Thomas Photography then an underscore to separate the date which is in long year, month, day format which is easy to sort in chronological order with another underscore separating the sequential order. This works for me. You may have come up with a different system. I only use one camera right now. If I add another camera in the future, I will add a camera type to the prefix so it will be easy to see which camera took what photo. Don't forget, there's a lot of data contained in each photo's Exif which in future weeks I'll show how that can be used.

Now, how did I get from the camera's name for the files that look like DSC_2345 to my system? For that I use a program which takes my files from the compact flash memory card and loads them onto my laptop. As it copies the files down it renames them using the photo file's date and adds the prefix and sequential number suffix around it. For instance, below is my photo STP_20070524_0008.jpg. This also happens to be the location where the AllEars.net Pictures This! Photowalk at Mousefest will start (click on link for more information and to sign up).

Sea Breeze Point near Disney's Boardwalk Resort, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Sea Breeze Point near Disney's Boardwalk Resort.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/500s, f/5.6, 200 ISO, 0 EV, 200mm Focal length

September 7, 2008

Where in the World #52

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #51:
 Where in the World #51

And here's the answer:
Harper's Mill in the Magic Kingdom
Copyright © 2008 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/80s shutter, f5.6

Tom Sawyer's Island is a great place to take a little breather from all the hectic activity in the rest of the Magic Kingdom. Did you know that the gears inside Harper's Mill creak to the tune of Down by the Old Mill Stream? There's Tom's raft resting on the shore in front of the mill. I wonder what he's up to.

Trygve Cumpston was the first to send in the correct answer this week! Congratulations to Trygve and all the readers who got the answer right: Sharon Pierce, Sharon Pierce, Angie Young, Jaclyn Koller, Theresa Rucando, Ed Aleszczyk, Bryan Timko, Alex Karr, Holley Blyler, Emily Rennie, John Dupre, John Agnew, John Dawes, Chris Bertelmann, Dylan Weidner, Belicia Dawson, Scott Cullen, Krystal Thomas, Jen Cox, Heather Young, David And Melissa Lizewski, Charles Wright, Zoe Cullen, Kayleigh Dawson, Neil Taylor, Andrew Michuda, Kendall Huffman, Jennifer Tremley, Denise, Brad Weaver, Frank F. Fincken Iii, Bonnie Smith, Terri Thornton, Angela Brown, Kelly Jean Clarkson, Hillary W, Emma Poprock, Michelle Thompson, Rick Shea, Melina Hillis, Jessica Reed, Regina Reed, Fred Williams, Shannon Milair, Amy Lucas, Brian Haas, Patty Lue Roosa, Sharon Dale, Tim Rachuba, Leah Rollins, Gary E Genteman, Dan, Cara Richards, Jennifer Schwing, Amy Miller, Paul Ignudo, Jr., Cameron Lange, Garland Cox, Mike Kaczanowski, Amanda Campbell, Tim Sayler, Liz Moreau, Alicia Henderson, Chip Vermette, Evelyn Cowdell, Anne Hainsworth, Barclay Bakkum, Matt Naldzin, Heather Coursen, Wendy Kinkade, Allison Dibiase, Suzanne Brown, Jill, Wayne Haney, Ed Charbonnet, Sarah Haas, Lee Anastasi, Scott Button and Scott Button. Each of you were entered in the September winners' drawing.

An honorable mention goes to Zack Dameron for the most creative wrong answer of the week - thanks for the laugh Zack!
_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #52: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #52

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, September 11, by clicking HERE!
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

September 9, 2008

Disney Pic of the Week: Mountains

Light Meter by Lisa K. Berton

She'll be coming 'round Space Mountain when she comes. She'll be coming 'round Thunder Mountain when she comes. She'll be coming 'round Splash Mountain, she'll be coming 'round Mt. Everest. she'll be coming 'round Matterhorrrrnnnn when she comes. Yeaaaah. (jazz hands)

In case that was too subtle, this week's theme is mountains and I'm not talking about Old Smokey, all covered in cheese. Whether or not you've conquered the drenching onslaught of water you should never drink at Splash Mountain, the Yeti representin' the West Coast in Matterhorn or the Yeti protecting the East Coast turf in Mt. Everest you still look at them in wonderment.

Today, I give you the basic shot of Splash Mountain in the Magic Kingdom as taken with a Nikon Coolpix 7600. It's nothing fancy unless you count my intentional angle of shooting from a Smurf's viewpoint.

lkb_mountains_splash.jpg

Come back on Thursday and Saturday for other mountainous photos from Barrie (who lost her poor meatball) and Scott (who sneezed).

September 10, 2008

Friends of Nemo

Light Meter by Lisa K. Berton

As I was looking over my photos from previous trips and trying to decide what to write about, I started laughing at some photos I took at the New England Aquarium and the Mystic Aquarium & Institute for Exploration. Why? It seems that since "Finding Nemo" was released into theaters and later on DVD, you will always hear someone (child or adult) mention characters from the movie at aquariums. Suffice it to say, sometimes it's me.

If you're using a point and shoot camera, odds are there is a setting for taking fish photos, however it's for shooting underwater and your camera MUST be inside specially designed underwater housing. Otherwise you could try a setting such as Behind Glass or Sports. The problem is that aquariums are not brightly lit and your camera will want to fire the flash. If your flash goes off then you'll get a big bright light in the shot.

See Exhibit A:
flashfish.jpg
Taken with a Nikon Coolpix 7600.

If you have the capability of controling your shutter speed and/or f-stop then you're free to try a variety of settings to get the shot just right. Be sure to get your lens as close to the tank as possible. I keep mine less than an inch away and try to follow the fishies as they swim by.

Here are a few of my favorites caught with the Canon EOS 30D and 18-135mm USM IS.
sealion.jpg
Obviously, this was taken outdoors...in my backyard. Yeah, that's it, in my backyard.

fishcloseup.jpg
This is a full body photo of a...fish. I don't know the breed but he/she is a rather bright yellow and yellow is my favorite color. There's an inquisitive fish on the right heading towards us.

starfish.jpg
Aren't starfish interesting looking? Apparently in China, they eat them fried on a stick. I'm not kidding, I saw it on "Passport to China" on The Travel Channel. Better Samantha Brown than me.

shark.jpg
Candygram!

And last but not least, the photo that makes me burst out laughing every single time (even if it's not perfectly focused).
byefishy.jpg
How many fish have waved "bye bye" to you?


September 11, 2008

End of the Line

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer


Expedition Everest at Disney's Animal Kingdom
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/500s shutter, f11

My Pic of the Week is a photo from my favorite Disney mountain, Expedition Everest, in Disney's Animal Kingdom. We had nearly reached the summit when I took this picture of the damaged track up ahead. Obviously, there was no getting past that point! Hopefully, it'll be fixed and we'll make it past the Yeti when I return to Anandapur for another go at reaching the top.

September 12, 2008

Organizing Your Photos

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Last time, I went over how I name all the thousands of photos I take each year. Each photographer will come up with his or her own naming system. This week I am going to show you how to organize your image files on your computer systems.

In sticking with my boring, yet simple, system, I start with one folder on my computer system called PHOTOS. Inside PHOTOS, I have subfolders for each year I've been taking digital photographs named: STP_2005, STP_2006, STP_2007 and STP_2008. In each of these folders I have twelve more folders for each month of that folder's year. For this year, they look like STP_200801 through STP_200812. If you recall, I rename each of my photos when I put them on my computer to something like STP_20080912_0192.jpg. This method works for me. Others might create a folder for each topic they photograph. However, don't over do it or your computer will get filled with hundreds of folders.

I know you are asking yourself how do I find something as specific as a photo of Space Mountain or how to pull up just my Walt Disney trip photos from 2006. That is the subject I'll cover soon. This was to get you thinking how to set up your files on your computer system.

Below is a photo from the Pop Century resort named STP_20061213_0006.jpg which resides in folder PHOTOS, subfolder STP_2006 and subfolder STP_200612 on my hard drive. Anyone ever have one of these phones? I had a touch tone one.

Giant Mickey Mouse phone icon at the Pop Century Resort, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
The giant Mickey Mouse Phone icon at the Pop Century Resort.
Nikon D70/18-70G, 1/320s, f/9, 200 ISO, EV +0.7, 18mm Focal length

September 13, 2008

Space Mountain Fall Colors

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Space Mountain in the Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Fall colors surround Space Mountain in mid-December.
Nikon D70/18-70G, 1/160s, f/6.3, 200 ISO, +0.3 EV, 50mm Focal Length

Normally, you don't think of fall colors when you think of Walt Disney World unless some Disney Imagineers work their magic during a Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party. For my Disney Pic of the Week Mountain theme, I chose this fall-like scene of Space Mountain which was taken from the Resort Monorail as it was waiting for traffic to clear the Contemporary Resort station during Mousefest back in 2006. It was a cool, clear day and the trees surrounding this Disney mountain were showing some color.

You may recognise this photo as it has appeared in a couple of other Picture This! Photographic Innoventions in the past: Showing how to use an HDTV to display photos and as a work of art hanging in a museum.

September 14, 2008

Where in the World #53

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #52:
 Where in the World #52

And here's the answer:
Tikis at Disney's Polynesian Resort
Copyright © 2006 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/6s shutter, f4

This mischievous tiki can be found at the Polynesian Resort. He stands outside the window peering in at his mate who is behind the register in BouTiki. BouTiki is the resort's largest gift shop, located on the first floor of the Great Ceremonial House.

Amy Young was the first to send in the correct answer this week! Congratulations to Amy and all the readers who got the answer right: Deb Ragno, Sharon Dale, Debbie Hudson, Joey Price, Cameron Love, Sara Lewis, Denise, Hillary W, Joy Johnston, Alicia Henderson, Chris Bertelmann, Tim Rachuba, Jennie Connelly, Melea Broekers, Paul Ignudo, Jr., Laura Pranaitis, Gaylin Chev, Derek Carty, Jennifer Horst, Sarah Haas, Sunny Skyes, Jamie Poynton, Jenny Anderson, Heather Coursen, Jeremy Reichelt, Mary Dannahey, Hope Schiemer, Linda Mac, Chris Freeman, James Boyd and Kim Steiner. Each of you were entered in the September winners' drawing.

_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #53: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #53

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, September 18, by clicking HERE!
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

September 15, 2008

November Disney World Calendar

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

If you read my December 25, 2007 blog, you know that my holiday gift to you is that each month I will post a photo calendar page that you can print out and use at home or work during 2008.


The adorable Winnie the Pooh will be your companion for the month of November! I took this photo of Pooh as he rode on his float in the Disney Dreams Come True Parade at the Magic Kingdom.


You will need to have Adobe Reader on your computer to download the calendar(s). Just click on the photo to download the calendar you want.


This one prints out at 8.5" x 11". It's handy if you need a calendar that you can write on.

November 2008 8.5x11 Calendar


This one prints out at 4.75" x 4.75", the perfect size for a CD Jewel Case frame.

November 2008 Jewel Case Calendar


Click here to see all of the calendars from past months.

September 16, 2008

Disney Pic of the Week: Black and White

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

A good way to add drama to a digital photograph is to convert it to black and white. This week we'll showcase some black and white photos from around Walt Disney World and Disneyland. Look for Lisa and Scott's Pic of the Week photos on Thursday and Saturday.

Malificent
Copyright © 2006 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/500s shutter, f5.6

I really love black and white when it's applied to portraits of people. This is Malificent in front of Cinderella's Castle at the Magic Kingdom. She looks very foreboding, doesn't she? She really knows how to give someone the eye!

In the color version of this photo, your attention is drawn very much to the bright colors of her make-up and costume. Also, the color in her staff and some of the stage decorations that are behind her are distracting.

When I converted it to black and white, the photo looked much more striking and dramatic. In black and white, the distractions become less noticeable and the focus of the photo is shifted to Malificent's intensity. Anytime you can draw attention to an emotion in your photo it is going to make it more interesting. Black and white photography can really help to do that.

September 17, 2008

The American Film Institute Showcase

Light Meter by Lisa K. Berton

While the Backlot Tour at Disney's Hollywood Studios isn't nearly as exciting (in my opinion) as it used to be, one cool factor is the American Film Institute (AFI) Showcase. The tram drops you off here at the end of the tour. You can also access it via the AFI Showcase Shop.

Here you'll discover costumes, props, sketches, and videos from various movies. The display changes every so often. When I visited last May the theme was Villains and I'm pretty sure it's the same now.

In order to preserve the materials, the Showcase is kept at a consistent temperature, dimly lit, and most pieces are kept in display cases. If you've ever toured a movie studio*, you'll find this to be rather common.

Photographing in these conditions can be tough. A flash would bounce off the glass. There are reflections in the glass anyway from lights and exit signs. You need a high ISO and a semi-long shutter speed. All of these combined can lead to noisy photos which to me is far worse than film grain. But you do what you can with what you have, right? Right!

The Canon PowerShot S5 IS (out of production - new version coming soon) was my tool. In Manual mode, I set my ISO to 800 because 400 would have required me to use a tripod I didn't bring and 1600 looked ghastly.

costume.jpg
f3.2, 1/30, ISO 800
This ensemble belonged to the character Nathaniel from the movie "Enchanted." When taking this shot, I steadied myself and held my breath.

charriot.jpg
f3.2, 1/10, ISO 800
This chariot belongs to White Witch from "The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe." I was able to place my camera on the partition that keeps people far enough away from the props, to help steady the camera.

pirateorgan.jpg
f3.2, 1/10, ISO 800
Davy Jones' organ from the "Pirates of the Caribbean" trilogy. This was right by the chariot so I shot it the same way. I feared setting off an alarm for placing my camera on the beam but a CM watched me and didn't say anything so I guess it was alright.

*If you visit the Los Angeles area, check out the studio tour at Warner Bros. It's THE best one.

September 18, 2008

Tower of Terror in Black & White

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Twilight Zone Tower of Terror Lobby in Black and White in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Orlando, Florida
The Tower of Terror Lobby as it would have looked like in an episode of the Twilght Zone TV show.
Nikon D70/18-70G, 1/160s, f/6.3, 200 ISO, +0.3 EV, 50mm Focal Length

This week's Disney Pic of the Week Black & White theme gave me an opportunity to show you what the lobby of the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror would have been like in one of those classic Rod Serling produced episodes.

September 19, 2008

Meta What?

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

The last couple of entries we've gone over naming all the digital photos we take and organizing them on our computer systems. This is all done in preparation of creating a database or library of our images. Anytime you have a collection of data on a computer, as our image files are, they are refereed to as a database or library. If you are familiar with iTunes, you have an idea of what a library of music looks like. Photo files are the same as any other media files like music or videos.

To be able to organize and search my library beyond the dates I took them as that is part of the name I use for each photo, I add information to them called metadata. When a picture is taken with a digital camera, the camera adds or embeds information beyond the image you see. That information is the Exif (Exchangeable Image File Format) data which includes the technical data like date, time, camera make and model, shutter speed, aperture, ISO, EV, white balance used, and lots of other things. Very important but what it doesn't have is a description of the photo, why it was taken, who or what is in the photo, where was it taken, and who took it to name a few questions that come to mind when I see a photograph.

This is where metadata comes in and over the years a standard has been developed by the International Press Telecommunications Council, or IPTC for short, called the Information Interchange Model (IIM) which has allowed software publishers to write programs where you and I can add information to our photos and it will be able to be read by the software we use today and in the future. This information can also be used by online photo sites like flickr so when you upload your images, metadata information will go with them.

So, what kind of information do you put in metadata? The entire IPTC standard has way more fields then you or I will ever use. The most important ones for me are captions, keywords, and copyright. When I load my photos onto my computer, I have the software I use do several things. It renames the files the way I want them, puts them in the monthly folder and adds the metadata I enter into the caption, keyword and copyright fields. The captions I use when loading are very simple. I give the basic Who or What, Where, and When of the day's photos. I can later add and or edit the captions to give more or less information. The copyright is very important as this stamps the photo as created by me, the photographer.

Keywords are used by photo software programs to find photos quickly. Google uses keywords people embed in their web pages for fast searching and it works the same way with our photos. Here's an example, every photo I take at Epcot in Walt Disney World has the keywords: Walt Disney World and Epcot. This makes it easy for me to find all my photos taken at Epcot. The more keywords used, the easier it is to find a particular set of photos or even an individual photo in a library of thousands of images.

Here is an example of one of my photographs taken at Walt Disney World. Below I will list the metadata I have added to it to give you an idea of how useful it is.

A replica of the Liberty Bell illuminated after dark in Liberty Square across from the Hall of Presidents in the Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Liberty Bell replica across from the Hall of Presidents in the Magic Kingdom.
Nikon D70/18-70G, 1/13s, f/4.5, 1600 ISO, EV +0.3, 50mm Focal length

Caption: A replica of the Liberty Bell illuminated after dark in Liberty Square across from the Hall of Presidents in the Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.

Keywords: america, bell, florida, hall of presidents, liberty, liberty bell, magic kingdom, night, orlando, walt disney world

Copyright: © Scott Thomas Photography

To find this photo in my library of photographs, all I'd need to do is search on any of the keywords listed. The more specific the search, the faster I'll find it.

Today, libraries, museums and public institutions all over the world are in the process of digitizing their important archives of papers, letters, books and photographs in their collections. Metadata will be how we find and access all these newly digitized documents as they are made available online for all of us to use.

September 20, 2008

Black and White - Follow the Lantern

Light Meter by Lisa K. Berton

When I was in photography school, I used to argue with my Photojournalism teacher. I was 100% certain that I only wanted to shoot in color and at the time it was because I was completely entranced by the crystal blue oceans, bright green grass, and constant sunshine of California. No, I wasn't living in CA (yet) but I'd made a few trips out West and well, everything just looked more vivid there.

I learned quickly though that black and white photos have their own place in my world. And as the years go on, the photojournalist in me enjoys shooting in B&W even more.

While looking for detail in Disneyland's Fantasyland, I saw this metal sign attached to Pinocchio's Daring Journey.
LKB-bw_pinocchiometal.jpg

I find it to be both elegant and simplistic and for those familiar with the movie, it'll give you visuals of various scenes from the classic tale.

September 21, 2008

Where in the World #54

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #53:
 Where in the World #53

And here's the answer:
Boat on Discovery River in Disney's Animal Kingdom
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/800s shutter, f4.5

This supply boat is docked on Discovery River in Disney's Animal Kingdom. As you go over the bridge from Discovery Island to Asia, you will see this boat over the right side of the bridge. It is docked behind Drinkwalla, a snack stand that sells cokes and chips.

Sharon Pierce was the first to send in the correct answer this week! Congratulations to Sharon and all the readers who got the answer right: Sharon Dale, Shannon Milair, Alex Karr, Kelly Jean Clarkson, Lindamac, Psychic Powers Lisa, Olivia Lobaugh, Alicia Henderson, Dave Cole and Elizabeth. Each of you were entered in the September winners' drawing.

_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #54: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #54

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, September 25, by clicking HERE!
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

September 23, 2008

Disney Pic of the Week: Birds

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

This week's theme for our Disney Pic of the Week is Birds. Naturally, I went through my Animal Kingdom shots looking for birds. As you know, most birds fly. The subject of my photo, an Ostrich, does not. He is, however, the second fastest animal on Earth, and the fastest 2 legged animal, and can run 45 miles per hour (70 km. per hour). Ostriches can maintain that speed for at least 30 minutes.

Ostrich seen on a Kilimanjaro Safari in Disney's Animal Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
The Ostrich is the largest bird in the world.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/200s, f/7.1, 800 ISO, 0 EV, 65mm Focal Length

Barrie and Lisa will share their Disney bird photography this coming Thursday and Saturday.

September 24, 2008

Optical and Digital Stabilization

Light Meter by Lisa K. Berton

Point and shoot cameras have been boasting about having stabilization for a couple of years now. In the beginning they didn't specify whether the stabilzers were optical or digital and there is a big difference.

Digital stabilization means that the camera boosts the ISO setting let's say from 400 to 1600. This means the camera requires less light to take the photo. When it does this, it increases what's known as noise. These are specs on the photo that make an image look like it's broken apart, so to speak.

Optical stabilization means that either the lens or the sensor inside the camera are moving along with you. This is the type you are looking for in a camera.

You'll find that different camera companies refer to things a bit differently even though they mean the same thing. Here's a quick rundown.

Canon - IS = Image Stabilization (lens adjusts to your movements)

Nikon - VR = Vibration Reduction (lens shifts accordingly)

Panasonic - Mega OIS = Mega Optical Image Stabilizer (lens adjusts to your movements)

Fujifilm - Dual IS = Dual Image Stabilization (their cameras have both moving sensors and a boosted ISO)

Olympus - Dual Image Stabilization (sensor shift and a high ISO)

Sony - Super SteadyShot (lens adjusts accordingly)

Pentax - Shake Reduction (sensor shifts)

Disney Pic of the Week: Birds

I really love photography and wish I had the time to learn more about this amazing hobby.

I couldn't resist adding one of my favorite bird photos to the PhotoBlog Pic of the Week.

This photo is of an Animal Kingdom Greater Flamingo that I took February 2008. You can also find the Flamingos at the Animal Kingdom Lodge Uzima Savannah.

The Greater Flamingo is the largest in the flamingo family.

Animal Kingdom Flamingo

This photo was taken with my Canon S5 IS. I set the camera on a near by post to steady it.

Exposure time: 1/1600
Shutter speed: 1/1613.80
F-stop: 4.5
ISO speed: 80
Focal length: 72.0000
Exposure mode: Auto
White balance: Auto
Aperture: 4.3438

P.S. I didn't tell the PhotoBloggers I'd be adding a photo...hope it's ok!!!

September 25, 2008

Wanna Hang Out?

Light Meter by Lisa K. Berton

As Scott previously stated, this week's theme is birds. I love birds but I'm especially fascinated by parrots. I think it started when I was a child and we'd visit my aunt and uncle in Miami. They had tons of animals, including a few parrots. One of them would call to my cousin whenever the phone rang, "Ellis, telephone." Another would whistle at my aunt. Those birds gave me very happy memories.

Disney's Animal Kingdom is home to a great variety of birds including several types of macaws. Here we have a Hyacinth Macaw doing what comes naturally.
lkb_birds_hyacinthmacaw.jpg

If you'd like to explore and learn more about birds, visit Jungle Island (formerly Parrot Jungle) in Miami.

September 26, 2008

The Digital Darkroom

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Before I go on talking about organizing our digital library of photographs, I want to introduce you to the new breed of software that were released a couple of years ago I refer to as digital darkroom programs. These programs assist you in organizing, editing and outputting (either files or prints) your digital photos in one place. You no longer need more than one program to do each of these tasks.

The two programs I want to talk about are Adobe Lightroom 2 (PC and Mac) and Apple Aperture 2 (Mac only). Now, I know there's a lot of discussion on which one to use in photography forums. I think both do a great job. If you have not looked at either of these programs, you can download free trials from Adobe and Apple.

Photo management software from Adobe and Apple.

What these programs do is import your photos from your camera or memory cards and place them into one image database. If you've been following this series, you know I put my photos into specific folders on my computer system depending on the year and month they were taken. Both of these programs will allow you to keep such a system and give you the freedom to create projects or collections within their image database or library as I like to call it. I use Aperture 2 and as an example I want to show you how I use Aperture's organizational power.

I set up a Project called Walt Disney World. Inside this project I have each of my trips in a folder labeled WDW_YYYYMM (so far I haven't stayed over a two month span yet but I would still separate the photos on my hard drive into separate folders). My last trip from May, 2008 is in folder WDW_200805 and has a few thousand photos. I have some albums in the WDW project I have set up for various reasons. One is called POTW (for the Picture This! Picture of the Week theme) where I have past and upcoming photos for the themes Lisa, Barrie and I have come up with. An album consists of photos I have moved into it. The photos are not actually in the album or folders but point back to the photo's location in the library. ONe photo can be in multiple projects, folders or albums. Luckily, I don't have to worry about where the photos files are as Aperture takes care of all that for me. I just drag and drop.

I can also search for a group of photos and this is where metadata comes in very handy. Let's say I want to create an album with just my photos of Epcot's Spaceship Earth. Since I have added the keywords, spacehip earth, to all my photos I have taken of this attraction, I can pull up a view of all of those photos easily by typing it into the search box. Once I have that view, I can create an album with a simple click of my mouse. If I had not added keywords, it would have taken me a long time to look through each of my WDW folders and pick out all the Spaceship Earth ones.

If you are looking to easily organize, process and print your digital photographs and have not looked at either Aperture or Lightroom, I think you will be very surprised at how versatile these programs are. Both have come out with second versions in the last few months with vast improvements over their first editions.

September 27, 2008

Sitting Pretty

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer


Snowy Egret in Magic Kingdom
Copyright © 2008 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/160s shutter, f5.6

For my Pic of the Week I chose this photo of a Snowy Egret I took in Frontierland last January. He didn't seem to have a care in the world. Perhaps that is because he has feathers instead of fur!

September 28, 2008

Where in the World #55

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #54:
 Where in the World #54

And here's the answer:
Splash Mountain Fastpass at Disney's Magic Kingdom
Copyright © 2008 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/60s shutter, f3.8

As you can see, this birdhouse is on the Splash Mountain Fastpass distribution sign, located in front of the Frontierland railroad station.

Sharon Dale was the first to send in the correct answer this week! Congratulations to Sharon and all the readers who got the answer right: Caryn Schill, Ryan Stevens , Emma Poprock, Nancy, Chloe', Zach C, Josh Rohrbach, Alicia Henderson, Tim Rachuba, Jennifer Schwing, Marie H, Lorrie, Nancy, Katarina Whitmarsh, Kellie Carter, Nicole Cyr, Jamie Poynton, Lee Anastasi, Chip, Kameo Crea, Karen Schlumpf, Michael Joel Gainey, Sharon Leitgeb, Dana Hall, Veronica, Chip Vermette, Mickey Eckert, Heidi Summers, Emily, Heather Coursen, Christine Claeys, Diane Jones, Holley Blyler, Karen Dresser-smith, Emily Rennie, Diane Ramos and Kim Garabed. Each of you were entered in the September winners' drawing.

Holley Blyler gets a special mention for entertaining me this week. Holley went out on a limb, WAY out on a limb, when she provided her answer. Thanks for the laugh Holley!

It's monthly drawing time again! This month's winner is Heather Young! Congratulations Heather, you are the lucky recipient of a fabulous Disney book and some really cool AllEars schwag!

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Challenge #55: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #55

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, October 2, by clicking HERE!
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Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

September 30, 2008

Disney Pic of the Week - Architecture

Light Meter by Lisa K. Berton

Welcome to another installation of Disney Pic of the Week. Today, I'll erect this week's theme with a shot of Cirque du Soleil's tent situated at Downtown Disney Westside. Inside you'll find their show La Nouba. I haven't seen it myself but I have visited the gift shop.

lkb_architecture%20copy.jpg
Canon EOS 30D with Canon 17-40mm USM L IS shot at f14, 10 seconds, ISO 250

Stay tuned for Scott and Barrie's structurly sound entries on Thursday and Saturday.

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About September 2008

This page contains all entries posted to Picture This! in September 2008. They are listed from oldest to newest.

August 2008 is the previous archive.

October 2008 is the next archive.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.