In the past I have traveled over much of my home state of New Jersey for outdoor photography. I had a recent revelation that there may be some outstanding outdoor photography opportunities in my own town of Denville. Photographing Denville Township’s picturesque lake communities under dramatic lighting sounded like a great new challenge to undertake.
Recent inclement weather set the stage for impactful landscape photography as I visited Lake Arrowhead, Indian Lake, Cedar Lake, and Rock Ridge Lake on separate mornings. The below images were all taken on my new professional Canon 5DsR camera which should allow for very detailed prints at nearly 4 feet in length. I might like to exhibit the following views of Denville and others locally in the future.
The morning clouds begin to break after a snowfall at Cedar Lake in Denville Township, New Jersey. Photographed with the Canon 5DsR by Dave Blinder.
Morning view of a dock and lake community at Indian Lake in Denville Township, New Jersey. Photographed with the Canon 5DsR by Dave Blinder.
Fresh snow coats a dock at Lake Arrowhead in Denville Township, New Jersey. Photographed with the Canon 5DsR by Dave Blinder.
Fresh snow lines the swimming beach at Rock Ridge Lake in Denville Township, New Jersey. Photographed with the Canon 5DsR by Dave Blinder.
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White-tailed Deer in Meadow
Mercer Meadows, New Jersey
Taken on a recent nature photography excursion, this frame is one of my favorite wildlife shots of the year. The soft light, swaying vegetation, and mostly concealed animal gave me an opportunity for a strong image. Photography and art are more about feel, emotion, and mood. Subject is not always paramount.
How would you describe the feeling of this image?
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I was trying to make some creative blur photos of trees in a parking lot yesterday, but was frustrated when a lone driver began making his way through my frame. What’s a photographer to do? Pan with the action and try to take an action shot of the Prius in motion. I like the contrast between the car and the leaves in the photo, and I was able to capture the Prius in a nice rule of thirds composition.
A creative motion photo of a Toyota Prius set against woodland trees. Photo taken handheld with a Tamron 16-300mm VC All-In-One lens and a Canon EOS M Mirrorless camera.
When I first began doing photography, I thought that the prime objective was to freeze all action to record a moment in time. Getting a sharp capture of a fleeting moment can indeed be difficult, whether it is a closeup view of the supermoon rising on the horizon, a sports photograph like a MLB baseball player nailing a fastball, or a bird photo like trying to shoot a tiny Tree Swallow mid-air. There is also great validity to having motion within your frame. In some cases, this can evoke moods like quickly fleeting action or on the other hand, serenity.
DSLR Nature Photograph from New Jersey showcasing how motion caused by wind can express time and add further dynamics to an image.
The above image was taken recently at the New Jersey Shore using a tripod-mounted Canon EOS 60D camera and the Tamron SP 90mm VC 1:1 F/2.8 Macro Lens. Camera settings in manual exposure: 2.5 seconds F/7.1 ISO 100. VC off (lens stabilization motor), Mirror Lock-up, 2 Second Timer, One Shot Autofocus (near the middle of the grass), and Auto White Balance.
I think the crescent moon has a really great distinctive shape, a shape I generally associate with a peaceful sky. The grass that I have included within the frame is typical vegetation of the mid-Atlantic shoreline, so this gives a nice sense of orientation for the viewer. For others, the grass may be reminiscent of a prairie or meadow. The back and forth motion of the blades of grass tell us that time is passing, and also gives the photo a much softer edged appearance than a motionless capture. I did shoot several similar frames, but in the other images I actually felt there was too much motion and not enough definition on the grass.
From a VERY quick walk in this frigid weather.
Instinctively, I critique all of my photos on a technical and compositional basis when I review them.
Sometimes I notice things I couldn’t see through the viewfinder. In this particular shot, the small brown blur towards to the top left is an “error” in my opinion. It’s probably a distant dead leaf, and I feel it detracts a bit from the photo.
I would have removed it physically if I had noticed through the viewfinder. However, I do not like to alter my nature shots in post-processing, and I prefer not to crop. I do my best to present the scene as it was. I did though, move the feather from a pricker bush on the ground, to an elevated and isolated branch to make the shot. It blew away seconds later and I’m lucky I got a shot at all.
I did shoot a few frames at an aperture of F/4 also (presented shot is F/2.8). The increased aperture brought nice detail into the feather, however I did not like the background elements that starting coming into focus.