January 5, 2013: Country Road
Being as the winter time yields little daylight its hard for me to get out and explore the area I live in. So when I get a clear afternoon after work and about a half an hour I tend to get the urge to go outside and shoot. I decided I wanted to drive around some of the country roads here in the Hershey/Palmyra area, especially ones I hadn't been on before. Hanging a right instead of a left I came across this short stretch of road. Now I wasn't out looking specifically for anything but I remember reading about lines and rule of thirds and having a focal point in your photo.
I'm not sure if i was able to capture the line and create that focal point especially since the road is wavy and curves upwards. There aren't a lot of straight, flat roads in Central PA and not a lot in far country either. But I put the car in park, waited for the road to be clear and walked out on the road and crouched.
I was using my JC Penney 135mm f/2.8 for this shot. I set the aperture to f/8, metered the camera (the lens is completely manual) and fired away. The first shot was a nice hue of blue, as I had forgotten to check my white balance before shooting. This is something I always do and can't seem to remember consistently. I took about 5 shots from this perspective with each shot at same shutter speed and aperture. The only thing I did differently was changed where I pointed the camera and focused on. I don't know if it made much of a different, maybe if the lens was being shot wide open at f/2.8 but at f/8 I figured I had a good enough DOF to capture the whole scene.
In editing in CS5 I tweaked the highlights and shadows a bit to add a little more contrast. I shot at ISO 200 so no sharpening was required, at least that i could see, so none was applied. I found that when I shoot outside and the sky is blue I like to bump the luminance and saturation of blue in the photo. Blue is one of my favorite colors and I like to see it in my photos so it normally stands out. I tweaked the greens and yellows a bit to balance them out as a well. Cropped the photo a little bit and I was done. I've read over and over to edit/crop in the camera. So when I was taking the pictures I was making sure what I wanted was in the viewfinder before pressing the shutter button.
Overall I am happy with it. I'm pretty pleased with the composition which is one of my main focus points in 2013. If the road had been flatter from front to back (behind me the road curved up and away I couldn't see traffic coming behind me), I would have laid flat on my stomach and gotten that shot as well.
Here is my "B" side. A little tilt makes the world seem like a slightly stranger place.
Usually there is some sort of film playing while I write this blogs which usually takes place at night while everyone is sleeping so i'll finish these with whatever I am watching:
Tonight's film: The Evil Dead