Sunday, January 6, 2013

Experimenting with intentional camera movement

Last summer, I began using the intentional camera movement (ICM) technique to photograph mangroves on Biscayne Bay. Here is a link to my pbase gallery with some of those photos. More recently, I used the ICM technique while paddling in Charley Creek, located in the Ten Thousand Island area of the Everglades. I was there on a 10-day paddle trip through the Everglades and spent a couple days going into the creek. The purpose was to photograph birds, but conditions did not allow it as I wanted. While paddling through the dark mangrove forest, I was again inspired to try ICM to capture the mangroves.  On the day that I attempted these, the sky was mainly overcast, which diffuses the light through the forest. This is perfect for ICM for two reasons. One, it reduces the harsh contrasts and two, it reduces the overall light. This is good for ICM because the lower lighting accommodates the necessary slow shutter speed. And the lack of harsh contrast allows a nicer blend of colors and avoids the streaks of blown out whites.

Here are some photos from my experiment. All of these were taken with a 0.5 sec shutter speed and f/22 aperture. The photo above was made with a faster movement than the next two below. You can see a greater blur effect as a result on photo one. I like the colors added by the canoeist. For photo two and three below, I attempted to capture a wide angle that included the creek and the mangroves that line it. Notice the grayness on the edge of the creek in photo three. That's low tide mud!

For this next photo, I focused on the large mangrove roots and zoomed out beginning at 70 mm. For all these photos, I am attempting to capture the mysterious darkness of the mangrove forest. Basically trying to make art out of chaos.

For more about our 10-day trip, I wrote a story and include a slide show of photos at my website cmierphotoandfitness.

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