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Old 07-03-2010, 09:21 PM   #10
dave6253 OP
The Tourist
 
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Joined: May 2006
Location: Phoenix, Arizona
Oddometer: 3,064
Ride vs. Stop

Remember that old ad campaign for basketball shoes? They would show some BB Player doing some superhuman feat then claim, "It's the shoes"! Wasn't it NIKE? The reality is the shoes probably made almost no difference.

Well, I have worked HARD to improve my photographs. I still have much to learn. Now I get comments and questions about how great my CAMERA is. Everyone wants to know, What kinda camera is that? I have news for you. It wasn't about the SHOES and it's not about the camera. It's a result of my desire to take better photographs and my willingness to learn. I actually take those questions and comments about the camera as a compliment, but wanted to point out the distinction here. You probably don't need a new camera.

Most modern point-n-shoot cameras can take excellent photos, AUTOMATICALLY. Especially in daylight when most of our rides take place. You don't need to become a professional photographer with professional gear. It really comes down to pointing the camera in the right direction. This is called composition. Google the term "Rule of Thirds". Following the rule of thirds can greatly improve your pics. My point-n-shoot camera will display a tic-tac-toe grid on the screen to assist you composing the shot based on the rule of thirds. See if your camera has this feature.

There are far too many reports where the photos do a better job of documenting the stops, and not the rides. Maybe we should call them stop reports? Photos of gas stations, restaurants, and motels have their place, but if that's all you've got it becomes a stop report. Don't forget to include photos of the ride, the roads, the trails, the scenery, your bike, the people you meet, and anything else that tells the story of the motorcycle journey. This is one reason I've started shooting while on the move, but that's another subject. Not everyone wants to handle a camera while riding. Be more willing to stop for a quick photo. Leaving the camera where you can quickly access it and snap a shot without dismounting helps. A couple weeks ago my bike needed a jump start from a nearby camper. I forgot to get a photo of the actual event and had to settle for a shot of the jumper cables after the fact. On the same ride I spent half a day riding in a snow storm. I failed to get any photos of the snowy roads... in the AFTERNOON... in ARIZONA... in JUNE! Who's gonna believe me now?

There are many online tutorials, books, forums, and other information that you should seek out to learn more about photography. Here are some of my favorite sites:

http://motojournalism.blogspot.com/ I highly recommend Antontrax's eBook
www.dgrin.com A site similar to advrider for photographers.
www.dpreview.com Camera reviews, forums, news
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