Digital Photography Class – Project Two


Tammy Judd Jenny
Digital Photography Class – Project Two

This Place I Call Home

For this assignment we were to take pictures of “the place we call home.”

Home for me is Petersburg, Alaska. After a few weeks of taking photographs around my town and surrounding areas I wound up with about 450 photos. It was kind of tough narrowing them down to just four for the class assignment!

I have also been having some challenges with my camera. It is pretty old and over time had gathered dust inside. So, I’d take a nice photo but these bits of dust would show up on the photograph. After asking around about how to get the camera cleaned, I was able to find a lens cleaning kit at the local drugstore and managed a DIY (do it yourself) cleaning. I was pretty nervous I’d mess something up but it did help and the camera still works so I guess I didn’t break anything. I think I will be able to continue to use my camera.

Driftwood Stump

Driftwood stump
In the picture of the driftwood stump, I had been down on the beach trying a 70-300 mm lens that I thought may not be working right. My camera was still in landscape mode while I snapped the picture of the stump. I was attempting to capture the interesting different textures of the stump and rocks surrounding it. I think I’d zoomed into the stump which caused the background focus to soften quite a bit. I liked the effect since the stump was my subject matter here. I framed the stump slightly off center while it leaned into the picture. I don’t recall if I’d switched this lens to a macro setting for this photo but I may have done so while experimenting with different settings. Many of the photos I took with that lens would not completely focus and I still believe there may be something wrong with it. The zoom function doesn’t work right anymore. I do quite like how this image came out.

Boat ribs

Boat ribs
This was the second time I’d taken this picture. I had been down to the fisherman’s memorial the day before and snapped a similar photo, but was unhappy with the focus, which was too soft. I came back the next day, after cleaning my lens, to try it again. I decided to use the landscape setting on my camera because I wanted to focus on the ribs of the boat but also thought that setting would give enough depth of field to also keep the rosemaling, painted on the shutter of the building, in focus. The boat is a Viking ship sitting outside the historical Sons of Norway Hall. For those who do not know, Petersburg has a heavily Norwegian heritage so these rosemaling touches are all over the place. It seemed appropriate to include a taste of those with this image and with this assignment about place.

Viking Ship

Viking ship
At sunset the day before taking the boat ribs photo I took this image looking up the mast of the Viking ship. I was underneath the edge of the boat pointing the camera up the pole. I switched the camera to automatic but used a manual focus. I didn’t adjust the ISO although it was getting dark by then but I wanted the shapes to silhouette against the little bit of light left in the sky. I framed the image so that the creature on the bow could be seen, the shields along the edge, as well as the figure, which appears to be on the boat. The figure is actually that of a statue located on the other side of the boat. Because of the angle and location where I stood the figure appeared to be standing in the boat itself. I’ve always been fascinated with silhouettes in artwork. I especially like how graphic this picture looks.

Sunset

Sunset
In the sunset photo, I used manual focus but do not recall if I had the camera set on its sunset setting or if I was using the aperture priority setting.  I have been experimenting with both of these settings and the different lighting settings, so I’m still on a learning curve. Previously I used my auto setting almost exclusively and only occasionally used manual focus.  I have been experimenting and still learning the other special settings on my camera. I see on this images’ camera data that the exposure was 1/250 sec, f/13 and my ISO was set at 100 which is standard on my camera but it’s not clear which setting I’d otherwise used.  In Petersburg last week we had a rare happening of having several sunny days in a row. I was out in it every day after work taking pictures. In this image I tried to capture the pretty colors of the setting sun reflecting in the water. I enjoy the texture of the reflections of silhouettes in the water and the little sunburst I captured just before the sun went down.

Digital Photography Class – Project One

Tammy Judd Jenny
Art 222 – Digital Photography class

Project One – Environmental portraits of people who are important to you
My assignment was to take four “environmental portraits of people important to me. My husband agreed to let me take his picture but since most of my family live elsewhere I was worried about finding three other people here in Petersburg who would let me take their portrait. I thought I’d ask my husband’s friend/boss but wasn’t sure who else.

My teacher suggested I talk with shop owners downtown to see if anyone would be willing to be my subject. That was a great idea.

One shop owner immediately came to mind. Although I didn’t know her well personally, from various interactions around town I knew that Savann Guthrie was friendly and usually sports a beautiful smile. I visited her in her shop and asked if she’d be willing to have her portrait taken. She agreed.

Savann

I decided to take Savann’s portrait in her store, The Fabric Basket, a bright and cheerful environment that is surely a quilter’s haven. During the shoot, I had her stand in several different areas of the store to give me a variety of photos from which to choose for the assignment. I decided for this assignment to turn in a shot from the final setting in which she perched on a row of fabric bolts in front of a display of Valentine’s Day themed notions.

I took the photos with my Konica Minolta Maxxum 5D camera using its standard 18-70 lens. Although I did experiment with a couple different camera settings during the shoot, I wound up taking this picture with the auto setting, automatic focus and without a flash. I handheld the camera. Initially I used a tripod but being kind of nervous about taking the pictures and not having much experience with the tripod, I went back to holding the camera, which felt more comfortable for me.

Savann was very gracious about me taking her time that evening. I plan to share the best of each photo setting with her so she can use them as she’d like.

Savann Guthrie, avid quilter and owner of The Fabric Basket in Petersburg, Alaska. Feb. 1, 2013.

Doug
I chose to take the picture of Doug, my husband, down near the harbor. After 30 years as a heavy equipment operator, Doug will be retiring from the State of Alaska in May. After his retirement, he plans to go back to commercial fishing, which he grew up doing. He has been dreaming of getting his own boat and going back to trolling for quite a long time so I thought the harbor setting was perfect for his portrait.

Again for his portrait I used my Konica Minolta Maxxum 5D camera and the 18-70 lens. I hand held the camera and used the auto setting and no flash. I believe this was auto focus although a few shots were manual focused and I didn’t keep good records of which were which.  As you will see in this picture and actually most of my photos, I tend to prefer placing the subject off to one side or the other rather than putting them smack in the middle.

I took several shots in this location with Doug looking at the camera but also tried a few where he’s looking somewhere else. We walked down the ramp and I took some photos of him up closer to the front of a boat but I wound up choosing this portrait of him looking at something outside the frame with lots of boats in the background. At the time, I didn’t notice that there was an eagle sitting atop of a pole in the background. After the fact, I’m told that the eagle is sitting on the pole of a trolling boat.

Douglas Jenny is looking forward to retiring from the State and resuming his career as a commercial fisherman. Feb. 3, 2013

Devren
Devren Bennett is another local shop owner here in Petersburg that I’d approached about the portrait assignment. I did know him already, though, as he and my husband are buddies who had served together in the Petersburg Volunteer Fire Department (my husband has since retired from PVFD). Devren, who owns a computer and boat electronics repair store, did not want his portrait taken in his shop and instead suggested we do it at the fire station where he spends quite a bit of his time.  Devren had warned me that he isn’t very photogenic but I decided to give it a shot anyway. We tried several different places around the station and I did have a little trouble getting decent shots of him. But from the ones that were alright, I chose to use this one of him standing next to an antique fire extinquisher. I used the same camera, Konica Minolta, and the same lens. I prefer to use natural lighting rather than a flash. I did keep my settings on automatic with auto focus. I composed the shot with him in the right hand side of the picture and hand held the camera.

Devren Bennett, volunteer fireman and local Petersburg businessman. Feb. 4, 2013.

Ted
My last portrait is of Ted Sokol who works for Alaska Department of Transportation. He is my husband’s friend and boss. He works as the airport manager and graciously agreed to let me take his picture.
I decided to take Ted’s picture at the DOT shop at the airport. I took pictures of him up on equipment and some outside the shop. At his suggestion, we took a drive out on the runway.  In this photo, Ted was facing down the runway before he looked over at my camera. I was a little bit challenged by the drizzly weather. The photos I took of Ted standing in front of the long runway were too dark to see his face and while I could probably adjust some of that in Photoshop, for this assignment, I decided to use this portrait of Ted which also captured the beautiful mist-covered hills next to the runway.
Again I composed the shot with Ted standing off-center. I used the Konica-Minolta camera and my standard lens. The camera was hand held and I used automatic mode and auto-focus. No flash.

Ted asked me to come back sometime when the sun is shining and take more photos of him. He is getting ready to retire soon to spend time with his family while he can. He’s fighting cancer.

Ted Sokol, airport manager at Petersburg Airport. Feb. 7, 2013.

Doing a little test

Just doing a test to see how this blogger page would work for photo sharing. These are photos that I took in fall 2012.

© Tammy Judd Jenny 2012.  Cranberry picking
© Tammy Judd Jenny 2012.  Blind Slough, Mitkof Island, Alaska
© Tammy Judd Jenny 2012.  Sunset, Scow Bay, Petersburg, Alaska

Studio Sunday

On Sunday I made cups for my studio. I thought people could use them while they visit me here. As a potter I’m just a little out of practice but it felt good to be at the wheel again and thought it went well for an afternoon’s work.

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Last night I trimmed the cylinders and added handles to my studio cups. Wondering if some of these mugs may be too tall for my Keurig dripper. Ah well, good practice for my rusty potting hands.

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Stu-stu-studio

My boyfriend calls it my stu-stu-studio. I’m just putting some finishing touches on my new pottery studio. Woohoo! I’m just about ready to start making art again. It’s been awhile.
I’ve been moving around the last few years – first to Dillingham in southwest Alaska and then to Petersburg in the southeast edge of this great state. My previous studio stayed behind in my hometown of Anchorage. I’d visit it from time to time when I’d go back home for holidays or trainings for work but there was usually not a lot of time for creating new art.
I found a space to rent here and moved my equipment in December. It’s taken until now to get everything put away and installed.
My boyfriend helped me set up my shelves the other day and on them I put some pottery which I’d moved from my old studio. He’s been wonderful helping me build worktables and installing equipment.
We’re so close to being finished with my space! I am excited to get back to having my hands muddy with clay.

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