Assignment 9: Depth of Field

This weekend, my mother came to visit me, and I had the opportunity to use her as my model for this assignment. I had a lot of trouble trying to show depth of field on my point-and-shoot, so this was the best I ended up with, after what were  hundreds of photos.

Vicki Tyler enjoys her morning hot tea in her daughter's home in Fort Worth, Texas while visiting her on March 25, 2013. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

Vicki Tyler enjoys her morning hot tea in her daughter’s home in Fort Worth, Texas while visiting her on March 25, 2013. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

Now this photo isn’t completely sharp, because I was trying to get SOMETHING out of focus and something into focus, but to no avail. Here are other shots of my mother though:

(TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

(TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

(TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

(TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

(TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

(TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

I followed Professor Hart’s advice in taking pictures of my mother because it is rare when I take a photo of her, partly because we are not exactly a photo-taking family and partly because she’s usually the one behind the camera. I’m pretty excited just to have these photos of her now, and I plan to use her as my photo model next time I see her.

I took advantage of the morning window light in my house, which I thought made her skin tones look great and the colors soft. I had planned on taking photos outside, but since it was frigidly cold, we stayed inside to take photos.

I had my ISO on 100, which was definitely ideal for the window light.

Although I’m not thrilled with how my depth of field assignment turned out, I am glad to have photos of my mother!

Assignment 8: Spring Break Photo Story

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The Corpus Christi Bay is the berth for more than 100 boats. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

Over Spring Break I went to Corpus Christi, Texas (Portland, more specifically) to visit with my friend’s family and go to the beach. The photo story I’ve chosen is to do a series on Corpus Christi landmarks. The first photo is of the Corpus Christi Bay. I had trouble trying to select a photo that would represent Corpus in its wider view. I thought the bay would be a good representation.

 

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Corpus Christi has a snow cone stand on practically every corner. Here, people line up for a frozen treat on March 15, 2013 in Corpus Christi, Texas. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

Shoreline is one of the main roads in downtown Corpus. there is a giant walkway where people will stroll and look at the water. Wheels of all kinds are everywhere between all the bikes, trikes, skateboards, strollers and even unicycles cluttering the sidewalk. Corpus, unlike Fort Worth, has hardly any fro-yo shops. Instead, there are snow cone stands everywhere. Walgreens on every corner? False. In Corpus, it’s snow cone stands.

 

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Tourists take photos on March 15, 2013 in Corpus Christi, Texas in front of the statue of Selena, a tejano singer murdered in Corpus Christi in 1995 by the president of her fan club. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

Selena was really only made famous to Corpus when the movie about her life was made starring Jennifer Lopez. She isn’t really the icon that media claims her to be, but there is a Selena memorial on Shoreline. And people are there 24/7.

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Corpus Christi, Texas–Below the statue of Selena is a mosaic wall mural created by children who were fans of the Tejano singer. White roses have become a symbol of Selena in Corpus. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

Corpus has always been known as the source for Whataburger fame. One Whataburger location downtown boasts two stories--the only one of its kind in the nation. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

Corpus has always been known as the source for Whataburger fame. One Whataburger location downtown boasts two stories–the only one of its kind in the nation. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

This was one of my favorite places in Corpus. As a non-Texan, Whataburger has always been an interesting Texan novelty for me. So seeing one of the first whataburgers that just happens to be two stories was cool for me, as cheesy as it sounds. My goal for this photo story was to take photos of the weird Corpus landmarks, so this had to be included.

 

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The Texas Surf Museum is located in Corpus Christi, Texas. It hosts surfboards and surf history about famous Texas surfers, including Jocko Taylor who died in 2012. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

 

Surfboards line the walls of the Texas Surf Museum in Corpus Christi,Texas on March 15, 2013. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

Surfboards line the walls of the Texas Surf Museum in Corpus Christi,Texas on March 15, 2013. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

 

The neat thing about the Texas Surf Museum is that Hillary, my friend from Corpus, knows some of the commemorated surfers. Jocko Taylor helped teach her brother to surf and shape boards. It was really interesting to hear all these stories about Jocko and then see him in a museum.

The biggest issue I had with these photos was getting people in them. Especially people’s faces. Next time I’m traveling, I’ll definitely stop people and ask to take photos of them.

 

 

Assignment 7: Fill-Flash Photo

Molly Jones, a senior English major at Texas Christian University, waits outside of TCU's Moudy building before her sports journalism class on March 3, 2013 in Fort Worth, Texas. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

Molly Jones, a senior English major at Texas Christian University, waits outside of TCU’s Moudy building before her sports journalism class on March 4, 2013 in Fort Worth, Texas. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

For this assignment, we were supposed to use the flash properly to make illuminate the photo rather than wash people out with an insanely bright flash. I asked my friend Molly to model for me and photographed her around 6:15 p.m. outside of Moudy. I think I waited a little too late on the sunset, since it’s almost too dark to notice it in the background. I found it difficult figuring out how close or far away I needed to be from her to keep the flash from darkening the background too much. This photo was definitely the best one I made, and I think I need more practice with fill-flash before I try it for TCU 360 or another publication. I may even need to go to Professor Hart’s lighting workshop.

Assignment 6: Environmental Portrait

Finding a friend with such a distinctive environment was a challenge. I called up my friend Hillary and asked if I could use her as my model for my environmental portrait assignment. She has a huge photo wall with photos from her beachy home of Corpus Christi, Texas. Hillary loves surfing and the beach and her photo wall shows that.

Hillary Dupriest, a junior strategic communication major at Texas Christian University, stands in front of her Fort Worth apartment's photo wall inspired by her love of surfing the beaches in her home town of Corpus Christi, Texas on February 25, 2013. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

Hillary Dupriest, a junior strategic communication major at Texas Christian University, stands in front of her Fort Worth, Texas apartment’s photo wall inspired by her love of surfing the beaches in her home town of Corpus Christi, Texas on February 25, 2013. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

The lighting situation was difficult because I wanted dramatic lighting but I didn’t want there to be any underexposure or overexposure. I removed the lampshade from her bedside table lamp and turned off the overhead light. The above photo is what I ended up with for this assignment!

For my photo assignment for TCU 360 this week, I took photos of the TCU BYX Date Auction. The event was held in the BLUU Ballroom and was a fundraiser for Texas Refugee Services. The members of the fraternity dressed up in silly costumes or swanky suits and strutted their stuff on the stage while the MCs auctioned their dates off. Dates from a Rangers game to the NEEDTOBREATHE and Ben Rector concerts helped raise over $4,000. The following are some of the photos I took:

(TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

(TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

 

(TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

(TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

 

(TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

(TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

 

Photo Assignment 5: Rule of Thirds

An elephant at the Cameron Brown Zoo in Waco, Texas greets visitors on a sunny Sunday afternoon on Feb. 17, 2013. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

An elephant at the Cameron Brown Zoo in Waco, Texas greets visitors on a sunny Sunday afternoon on Feb. 17, 2013. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

On Sunday I went to visit my boyfriend in Waco, Texas. After lunch we went to the zoo and I took photos of various animals. I liked this photo of the elephant because of the movement. This photo applies to the rule of thirds because the elephant is toward the right and the focus of the photo is not in the center. An issue I had taking photos at the zoo was the direct light. There were extreme shadows so I did bring up the brightness a bit in this photo.

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On Saturday I took photos at the TCU tennis match, and got shots of the action.

Pepperdine tennis players reach for the ball in a match against TCU on Saturday Feb. 16, 2013 in Fort Worth, Texas. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

Pepperdine tennis players reach for the ball in a match against TCU on Saturday Feb. 16, 2013 in Fort Worth, Texas. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

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Photo Assignment 4: Action

Chloe Burgoon, a senior strategic communications major at Texas Christian University, jumps on her backyard trampoline on Feb. 10, 2013. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

Chloe Burgoon, a senior strategic communications major at Texas Christian University, jumps on her backyard trampoline on Feb. 10, 2013. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

 

After the major storm Saturday night, I was worried that it would be difficult to get an action shot on Sunday. However, it was sunny–a  little too sunny– and I went to my friend Chloe’s house to take photos of her jumping on her trampoline. I probably took 100 photos; most of them were of Chloe with her hair crazy and in her face, but since it’s seriously encouraged to show faces in photojournalism, I chose the photo above for this assignment.

I had my ISO at 80 and a neutral exposure on my Olympus point-and-shoot. Figuring out lighting in her backyard was definitely an issue because it was shade when Chloe was just standing on the trampoline, but when she jumped, her face would be lit up with the light coming over the roof of the house. So I moved all over the yard, and decided that having Chloe backlit would probably be my best option for the light available.

After getting back to my house to upload the photos, I did straighten the photo so that the background porch railing would be straight. I definitely do understand now how difficult it is to get a good action shot because of all the things you have to keep in mind.

Photo Assignment 3: Night Photography

The Ferris Wheel at the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo in Fort Worth, Texas on February 4, 2013.

The Ferris Wheel at the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo in Fort Worth, Texas on February 4, 2013. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

For this photo, I had trouble trying to figure out how to capture the light at night. The good thing about the Stock Show and Rodeo is that with all of the rides in the carnival section, the lighting is very abundant. I had trouble getting people in the photos I took because a lot of them would not let me take photos of them. I liked this photo of the ferris wheel because I liked the angle and the colors.

I took this photo at ISO 100 and at a lower exposure to get the lighting just right. The ferris wheel epitomizes any carnival so I chose this ride because of its brightness and because of its grandeur.

Admired Photographer Assignment: Michael Didonna

Michael DiDonna's "Battle of the Elan" depicts a Kenyan man pulling the horns off an Elan for a ritual dance.

Michael DiDonna’s “Battle of the Elan” depicts a Kenyan man pulling the horns off an Elan for a ritual dance.

Michael Didonna is a photographer who dabbles in all realms of photography, but is most recognized for his portraits. However, I personally love all of his travel photography. The image “Battle of the Elan” is a remarkably powerful image because of the use of direct light, the depth of background and the perfect moment being captured. It raises a lot of questions about why this man is removing a dead animal’s head. Even though this image would normally be thought of as gruesome, the image is striking and beautiful with the composition and the lighting.

Michael Didonna is a native of New York and went to Hampshire College where he studied music and fine-art photography. Since then, he has worked as a photojournalist, a fashion photographer and travel photographer. He has photographed for clients like Atlantic Records and Warner Brothers, as well as Guess, Victoria’s Secret and Verizon Wireless. His photos have been published in Rolling StoneJazzTimes, and other publications. 

I really admire his photography for the distinct style it possesses as well as the power in each image. His portraits are really unique for the lighting, the capturing of a subject and use of drama in each photo.

A portrait by Michael Didonna

A portrait by Michael Didonna

Assignment 2: Shoot a Photo in Each Type of Light

For this assignment, we were to make three photos: one in direct light, one in diffused light and one in artificial light. I asked two of my friends to be models for this assignment, and we went to the Fort Worth Botanic Gardens. I shot at an ISO of 80 for direct light shots and 100 for diffused light and set my exposure to -.03 on my point-and-shoot Olympus camera. The troubles I encountered were mainly figuring out what to do for each shot, since it was difficult to force candid shots with my two model-for-a-day friends. It was difficult trying to make photos without there being a ton of people in the background distracting from the main focus of the photo.

Photo 1: Direct Light

Molly Jones, a senior English major at Texas Christian University, spent her Sunday at the Fort Worth Botanic Gardens in Fort Worth, Texas on Jan. 27, 2013.

Molly Jones, a senior English major at Texas Christian University, spent her Sunday at the Fort Worth Botanic Gardens in Fort Worth, Texas on Jan. 27, 2013.

Photo 2: Diffused Light

Molly Jones, a senior writing major at Texas Christian University, and Hillary Dupriest, a junior strategic communication major also at Texas Christian University, pose with a lion fountain at the Fort Worth Botanic Gardens in Fort Worth, Texas on Jan. 27, 2013.

Molly Jones, a senior writing major at Texas Christian University; and Hillary Dupriest, a junior strategic communication major also at Texas Christian University, pose with a lion fountain at the Fort Worth Botanic Gardens in Fort Worth, Texas on Jan. 27, 2013. (TCU Photo/ Alex Tyler)

Photo 3: Artificial Light

Hillary Dupriest, a junior strategic communications major at Texas Christian University, works on homework in the lobby of the DEMT, the fashion merchandising and interior design building, on Jan. 27, 2013.

Hillary Dupriest, a junior strategic communications major at Texas Christian University, works on homework in Fort Worth, Texas in the lobby of the TCU DEMT, the fashion merchandising and interior design building, on Jan. 27, 2013. (TCU Photo/Alex Tyler)

Assignment 1: Self-Portrait

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I took this photo in the morning, which, looking back on it, really wasn’t the best time to take a photo with ISO 100 since there wasn’t as much light as I thought there would be.

I struggled with framing the photo and figuring out what to do in it. The timer was helpful though and I learned that it’s difficult to shoot photos with limited light when you can only photograph at ISO 100.