July 4th Photography

It was revolutionary in many ways:

1) I figured out another quirk of ACR… the awesome vibrance slider which adjusts saturation of desaturated colors, but leaves saturated colors alone (I’ve always used saturation in the past).

2) It was the first time I had gone on a photography trip with friends… before it was always me photographing and other person(s) feeling awkward.

With that said…


Shot most of my pics f/16 at 1/4-1/6 sec. In retrospect, I could’ve opened up the aperture a little more and used a slightly slower shutter speed. The waterfall was quite violent and some of my highlights lost detail.

Composition proved to be problematic, as usual. The PQ Waterfall area has many rocks, each of which can be either complement the waterfall or distract from it. In December, I took this zoomed-out shot, which turned out fine because the rocks complemented the waterfall. Now it’s July, well past the rainy season, and the total volume of water is less, which exposed some rocks closer to the waterfall. So on this trip I moved in, to that rock in front of the waterfall you see in the picture I linked. I focused in dynamic nature of the surging water, which turned out well. I still wish I could’ve taken a zoomed-out shot farther away, just to compare how much the falls have changed.


Fireworks was a whole ‘nother shenanigan. Between not knowing where they were to be set off, failure on my part to put the camera on the tripod, and last-minute switches in position, I almost didn’t get them. Really the Del Norte fireworks paled in comparison to the WV ones, but that’s because they prob just started doing them this year. By far the hardest I’ve had to work for decent photos. They released the fireworks behind the stands, and there was some fencing that was adjacent to it. All in all a terrible setup. But, things would turn out for the better…

From the WV fireworks on Friday I learned to zoom in and try to get something in the foreground (not easy with these school fireworks). Both these were forced onto me due to the setup. The “something in the foreground” was people in the stands. The zooming in was to avoid getting the fence in my photos. So I was lucky.

Regrets –

f/16 aperture. I thought I could hold my shutter long enough to get more fireworks in one exposure, but alas the force of habit resulted in underexposure of many of my shots.

Tripod. Fail.

Door-thingy on the sides of the stands. Distraction that hurt my shots a lot.


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