Usually I’m a pretty sound sleeper, sometimes though I just get too caught up in ideas, usually new ideas. Lately it has been QuickTime Virtual Reality Movies. If you don’t know what I’m talking about they are set of image which are merged together to create a 360 degree image. Usually you click on them and then move your mouse around to view the whole image. If you want to check some out head over to http://www.panoramas.dk/ (I’ll turn it into a link a when I learn how). Very neat stuff. I’m hoping to incorporate it into some of my journalism work in the near future, the question has been how?
Over the past several week I’ve been fairly obsessive compulsive about figuring how to shot these, and how shot them right. So far I’ve figured out that small problems when you take the pictures turn in huge problems when you process the pictures to deal with the problems up front. The main problem I’ve seen so far is getting all my shots level. After much reading I’ve found that it seems to be easiest to use a panoramic head on top of my tripod head. I’m close to done with my home made version of this. Hopefully that will help out in the more scenic and interior shots, but tripods just aren’t friendly for most photojournalism.
To that end for some reason tonight it unlocked in my head that well I may not have a fisheye lens, a common solution to getting 360 degree panoramic, I could at least try my 14mm. I’ll give it a run tomorrow, hand held, see how badly it goes, and work from there. I wish I could understand why certain ways of doing things get locked in peoples heads, mainly mine, and why obvious, if not potentially problem wrought solutions, take so long to come to mind. I guess I should be happy that the different ideas pop into my head at all, whether they be little things or big things. We all need to have a little late night, and somewhat ridiculous inspiration on occasion.
And at some point during this whole process I’ll start spelling panoramic correctly without a spell checker instead of my “panaromic”. Guess there was a reason I wasn’t a writer.
I’ve always been a fan of a challenge. They’re the main thing that keeps life interesting. Now, a challenge is one thing, taking a photograph of a moving person, sometimes pretty quickly moving, in a pitch black room, that’s just brutal. One of my assignments today was to shot firefighters doing night training. Basically the firefighters would wear something over their visors to reduce visibility then enter a room that was pitch black. This was all to simulate a smoke filled house or building. This left me hand holding 2 second exposures that I couldn’t even see well enough to vaguely focus. It was actually kind of fun. I love a situation wear failure is expected and all you can do is take the chances and see what you can get. And well I wouldn’t call it a great success, I’ll take it considering.
So I think I’m finally ready to start publishing actual words and pics on a, hopefully, regular basis. In the spirit of still test, this is an image from a break dancing demonstration I attended last weekend. Many a year ago I would have mocked break dancing. Now I’d have to say it’s a pretty darn impressive art form. If you ever get a chance to watch skilled breakdancers perform take advantage of it. Well worth the hour or two of time.