In Love with Cameran

For those who are wondering who Cameran is, that would be my camera (camera + Nikon = Cameran 😆 )

I am totally loving the manual mode now (though I think I’ll shift back to the aperture priority mode for regular daily shots. Just nice to know that I can tweak the way my camera works according to the effect I want to get). Am totally loving the tripod that hubby so generously bequeathed to me, too! (Am I blessed having him or am I blessed having him? 😀 )

So I played around with Part 2 of Week 2’s lesson of the 2peas Photography course. If you’ve been reading the past posts, the 1st week had to do with aperture (lens opening) priority, and this week had to do with shutter speed. Part 2 (you get to advance if you’re a diligent student, 😆 ) is setting the camera to Manual mode (why is this such a dreaded setting, I wonder?) and applying what you know about ISO, aperture, and shutter speed to tweak your shooting according to what you want to come up with.

We were actually supposed to choose one priority to tweak in the manual mode: either aperture or shutter speed (because once you set your ISO and one of the two other items, then the camera will adjust the 3rd item for you. Nice, right? 😉 )

I decided I wanted to try both! So I played.

Here are my shots in manual mode with the following settings: f/4.5 ~ focal length: 52mm ~ ISO: 800

{Click on images for larger views}

Manual Mode with Aperture set at f/4.5, focused on book in front:

Manual with Aperture Priority, Front Focus

Manual Mode with Aperture set at f/4.5, focused on books at the back:

Manual Mode with Aperture at f/4.5, Back Focused

Note: I’ve recently begun my goodreads (didn’t really get much up, unless you count my setting up an account and one book review, hahaha!) so I wanted a shot that I could use for my profile photo over there. I took 2 shots: in the first, I focused on the front part; in the second I focused on the back part. (In the second photo you can catch a sneak preview of the books that will appear on my to-read list. Come to think of it, these same ones will be featured in my to-cover-with-plastic-first list. 😆 )

Here is my one and only shot taken in manual mode, prioritizing shutter speed.

Shutter Speed at 6 seconds.

Shutter Speed Set at 6sec

I set the shutter speed at 6 seconds with the same ISO of 800 and a 32mm focal length. I used a tripod because of the ultra-low speed I wanted. (Had I held it in my hands, simply breathing out of my nose would have blurred everything in my photo. hahaha!) I placed it at a very slow speed because I wanted to blur the lights coming from Buzz Lightyear.

Considering that it took soooo long to set up and just a few seconds to take the shot, I was pretty pleased with the results (if I may say so ever so humbly). It was so funny because I had to tie Buzz Lightyear’s legs together with rubber band to keep the on-button activated. Then I had to figure out how to make Buzz stand on his legs at an angle (had to tie him with gold cords, which you’ll see in the background behind him) so that I could get the full effect of the lights. Of course all the other Buzzes and Woody and Zorb had to lean or sit at varying angles just so Buzz the LIGHTyear guy could really light up the place.

This is soooo fun! Play along with me, why don’t you? Then link me up to your photos so I can ooh and aah at them too! 😉

LOAD Day 17

Okay, I missed upload cutoff time by 2 seconds again. I’ve got to stop playing long enough to upload way before the last minute, don’t you think? 😆

So here’s my 17th layout for January and my 12th Daily December layout. Woohoo!!! In 14 days I’ll have a theme album completed, all thanks to LOAD’s kick in my butt! Thank you, Laine!!!

Gingerbread Gone

Journaling reads:

five minutes tops. and then they were gone. those gingerbread boys never stood a chance with you, my dear hungry boys.


Jessica’s fab Daily December template, Katie Pertiet’s grid frame, Michelle Coleman’s topper, Emily Merritt’s and Heidi Larsen’s papers, Karel’s gingerbread bowl, Anna Aspnes’ ribbon (recolored), and Bren Taylor-Boone’s alpha.

Reality TV, anyone?

Did any one of you catch American Idol yesterday?

We had a ball of a time watching Reynaldo Lapuz. What a guy! He happens to be Filipino. Actually, from the very first moment when dh, my kids and I caught the teaser of the show on TV, we KNEW that this guy happened to be Filipino. We were rolling on the floor with laughter. What a great guy. How can anyone help not liking him, simple as he is?

Paula, too, cracked us up with her interpretative hand signals and her bopping along. Amazing.

Dh checked Youtube minutes after the show ended and, true enough, there he was! on Youtube. Within minutes! So funny.

Here, in case you missed it. (And if you didn’t, watch it again. It gets better each time).

What were your favorite parts? These were mine:

“Simon, you are a great person. (sniffle, sniffle, voice breaking, tears threatening to fall) You give chance to everyone to sing to the whole world. I’m thank you.”

“You are heaven’s chosen to give chance to any talent for free of charge!”

“Even they throw you negative words but there are many people who really like you, who really admire you. One of them is meeeeh. You are a great person, Sssssaaaahmon.”

“You’re my glory, Ssssssssaaaahmon.”

Seriously, though, laughter aside, you know what I really, really like about this guy? (Aside from the fact that he’s sooo Pinoy!) He is just so guileless, so good-natured, so happy. So Filipino, actually.

You know that part where Simon tells him no? He just goes and hugs Simon. I mean, how gooooood can a person’s heart be? Whereas 90-95% would walk out and say bad words and curse, here’s this guy, just so thankful and so appreciative of the chance to sing. Amazing.

On a deeper level, I guess it teaches us how to be grateful. In a world where we often forget that it’s the simplest things that matter.

Like I said, what a guy, huh?

(And mark my words, this guy is going to be a greater hit than William Hung ever was. 😆 )

Here’s another Pinay (slang for Filipina… for men the equivalent is Pinoy) who made it big on Ellen Degeneres’ show. What’s funny about it is that it shocks people that she has a good voice. Wasn’t shocked that she could sing well, actually, because there are tons of people in my homeland who can sing well (and there are tons who can’t either. But Filipinos in general love entertainment and performing). People on the street sing well. The man in the bus can break out in song and he’ll be in tune. Let a band play on the streets, and passersby will bob their heads and move their bodies in perfect rhythm. I guess what shocked me more was that she was actually discovered on youtube, and Ellen was able to give to her an opportunity that Charice Pempengco probably never even dared to dream of.

Me? I am in awe of her, simply because she can do what I can’t. 🙂

You absolutely hafta, gotta take this GREAT TEST!!!

for photographers, Photoshoppers, and generally anyone addicted to digital stuff (that would be you, and me, and you, and you too, and you … 😆 )

The objective of the test, called Fake or Foto, is for you to determine which of the photos in a set of 10 is computer generated and which is an actual photograph. Try it. You’ll be amazed.

And what’s great about the test is you can be very visual about it if you’re feeling tired and just need some entertainment. Or, if you’re intense, you may want to summon everything you know about photography, lighting, shadows, effects, and Photoshop to help you get a higher score. Either way, it’s fun.

Find the Fake or Foto test here.

Click on the link, take the test, then come back and post in the comments what your score was. I’d love to know!!!

Alrighty. Need to have dinner and then I’ll be back in a bit to post the link for Set 3 of Pasteleria.

Catch you later, alligator! 😉

Photography Phun!

Yeah, that’s what Laine’s 12-Week Photography course at 2peas has been! Totally fun!

We’re into our 2nd week, and the lesson for this week is even more fun than it was last week! I guess I have to admit that while I am far from being a great photographer, I’m not a newbie at it either… but I’ve never participated in any photography course, ever, so this kind of learning-road is pretty new to me (adventure, yeah! the word for the month), and I’m having a load of fun with it! I love that there’s always a challenge with an exercise to do (must be echoes of the school-age kid in me 😀 ).

This week is all about shutter priority (and then getting to love the manual mode on your camera).

The challenge for this week was to take a photo of water from your kitchen sink flowing at a slow shutter speed and then at a high shutter speed. The idea is to see how a higher shutter speed freezes movement–sort of like we used to do when we were kids and we played “statue-dancing” (you know, where you dance like crazy and then freeze when the music stops. All those who move get taken out of the running. Bless the poor child who just has to sneeze at that point! 😆 ).

So to create that splashing of water, we had to have some object of our choice that would get in the way of the flowing water, enough for the water to splash about. I used an overturned carafe and, for some excitement and color (because my kitchen happens to be almost all black granite and stainless steel… very nice but very boring for photos 🙂 ), I added some glass pebbles. And I used my tripod (because if you take at a slow shutter speed and you move slightly, you’re going to get a lot of blurring… so even if my lens is VR-equipped, I didn’t want to take any chances. haha).

I got soooo excited with the challenge that I… uhm… didn’t read the instructions too well. 😳 We were supposed to set our ISO between 1000 and 1600, and I foolishly just shot away at the ISO my camera was set at when I last took a photo (400. Waaaay below the required minimum. Geez.)

One more proof that I make a bad student: we were supposed to take 1 photo at a slow shutter speed and then 1 photo at a high shutter speed, right. 1 + 1 = 2. I took three photos at different shutter speeds. Hmmmm. Maybe my school-age kids shouldn’t ever see my blog lest they get any ideas about not following Teacher to the letter. 😆

So here’s what I came up with:

{ Click on the images to get a clearer, amazing view of the differences! 😉 )

Lookie here!

Journaling below:

Water drops change: from an indistinguishable blur to “comet-like” drops with tails to distinct droplets floating in air. Wow!

Here’s another view that will show you the differences, even more amazing than the first one above. This shows you the difference in the water coming from the faucet:

Differences in Water Flow 2

And here are the individual photos:

With a shutter speed of 1/20 (this is the slowest shutter speed I used):

Shutter Speed 1/20

Shutter speed of 1/80 (this was the slowest speed that Laine had required at an ISO of 1000-1600):

Shutter Speed 1/80

Shutter speed of 1/200:

Shutter Speed of 1/200

Cool, huh? Try it and have fun!!!

My LOAD for Day 15

Yeah! Halfway through! Fifteen days into the new year with fifteen layouts to show for it!!! Woohoo!!! 8)

Santa’s Elves

Journaling reads:

you have got to be the most adorable santa’s elves i’ve ever seen in my entire life! how did i get to be so lucky?

CREDITS: Jessica’s fab DD template, Michelle Coleman’s topper, Katie Pertiet’s grid brush, Emily Merritt’s papers, Lisa Warren’s cardinal

Alright then! On to working on the next set of Pasteleria. I’ll be back in a few! 😉