Week 39 (4/28/2014 -5/4/2014): 10th & Bloomfield, Hoboken
Picture taken on 5/3/2014 at 9:13 AM
Last week I mentioned that one of the biggest challenges for my Hoboken streets project would be to taking pictures that don’t in some way involve the sun . Naturally I’m drawn towards taking pictures that utilize some kind of light source to create contrast. In order to keep improving my photography, it’s important that I constantly challenge myself to go outside of my comfort zone. It’s as the saying goes, “variety is the spice of life”
This week’s picture was taken while I was on my Saturday morning bagel run…for those of you that don’t know, I’m a bagel addict. Moving on though. It was still early enough that the sun wasn’t high in the sky but it was still filling the day with plenty of natural light. Although my usual Hoboken bagel spot is on Washington street, I decided to walk down Bloomfield instead so I could photograph the cherry blossoms that line the street. It only seemed fitting that bloomfield would be filled with so many blooming trees. Early into my trip I came across an apartment building that had a pinkish tint which acted as the perfect backdrop for the cherry blossom. I shuffled around for a few minutes trying to find the best angle to fit everything in frame at ~35mm. Eventually I found the spot and the here you have it!
One of the advantages of taking pictures with even light is that it’s easier to set your exposure for the entire scene. When you include a bright light source in your picture (e.g. the sun) you have to worry about some or all of the image getting blown out (overexposed) or underexposed. I usually worry more about overexposing the image because it’s harder to recover overexposed areas, than underexposed areas. Since this week’s picture had no harsh light source setting my exposure was a breeze!
The hardest part of shooting this picture was capturing what I considered to be the good part of the scene at ~35mm. The reason I’m saying approximately (~) is because I’ve been shooting more and more with my 17-50mm Sigma lens. Yes 35mm is within the range of my lens, but for some reason the lens never seems to settle on 35mm exactly. Any picture I take at 35mm usually reads as 34mm or 36mm when I review the image. I’m not sure why this happens, but it’s not really a big deal.
If there is one thing I learned this week it’s evenly lit pictures are relatively easy to shoot, if you can find interesting ones. The last part of that statement is the key, “if you can find interesting ones.” My usual move in the absence of contrasting light is to find a unique angle or move in close and use a wide aperture to tap into a depth of field element. I did neither this week and that again plays into my desire to shoot more variety. Variety should be everyone’s goal. Flip through the pictures on your computer, facebook or instagram and I bet you’ll see a trend. Hopefully the trend isn’t selfies, but even if it is, this week try to shoot something new. Find something you don’t usually photograph and get to it!