So yeah. We're swingers. As in: can't walk past a swing set at the park without hoping on for a ride. Now, I would never hog a seat if kids were waiting, but (as was the case on this scrapped about evening) if the seats are largely empty, hells yeah, I can't resist.
This was from Memorial Day weekend. We had eaten dinner at iHop and decided to try to walk off some of the calories. It was a gorgeous evening, a light breeze, mid-60s...perfect walking weather. We both had our cameras with us and when we saw the empty bank of swings I immediately thought of doing a "panning" self portrait. Panning is a photographic technique where the photographer moves the camera while the shutter is open. Normally moving a camera while the shutter is open would give you a blurry picture, but with panning, you move the camera smoothly and at the same rate of speed that the subject is moving. You see panning a lot with race cars - the end result gives you a car that is tack sharp but everything that isn't moving is blurred. It might be easy to confuse a panned shot with a shallow depth of field, since they have similar looks. But with a panning shot the roadway under the moving car would be blurred, whereas in a shallow depth of field shot the road would still be sharp.
So my idea was that if we were swinging, we could take self portraits of ourselves using this technique. Problem is, you need to be able to have a little control over your shutter speed to make this work. And it requires that you hold the camera as steady as possible within the constraints it actually moving. So in the race car scenario, your arms are braced at your sides and you swivel at the waist. In the swing scenario you have to hold the camera out in front of you for the selfie, but it's hard to hold it perfectly steady while you're moving on the swing. So, my shots didn't pan because my little Nikon S01 has no overrides. Kerig had the manual overrides, but couldn't get the camera to be absolutely steady - although he had way better luck than I did.
But it almost doesn't matter if the shots worked. We were cracking up the whole time. First, trying to swing high with only one hand on the chain? Yeah, sort of fun/scary, but it definitely gives you a little rush. But also, we'd take a shot and look at what we got and they were funny. And by 'funny' I mean god-awful and terribly unflattering. Kerig got a good one of him, but sadly I'm in the background looking less than, um, 'with it.' The bottom line is: we had a lot fun.
This is the best shot of the two of us. Yes, I realize we're not really interacting. And I'm not even trying the technique. But I'm looking at my results, so that counts. ;)
Yes. The sewing on this is a little rough. We (the sewing machine and I) were having a slight difference of opinion. It appears the machine won that argument. C'st la vie.
Also: the washi tape at the top as We R Memory Keepers and it's billed as navy.
Dear We R Memory Keepers: I don't know what you're smoking, but that is NOT navy.
And guess who's finally carrying his own weight around here?? Just kidding. But Kerig has a degree in photography and LOTS of yummy equipment. Including a copy stand:
A copy stand was how we recreated artwork (or text) back in the old days before scanners. It holds the camera perfectly parallel to base so that the image is nice and square instead of all wonky and trapezoidal. Since taking these pictures is a royal pain in the ass, handing off the picture taking part is really wonderful.
This could be the start of something beautiful.