Friday, September 12, 2014

Capturing Motion: A Personal Photography Challenge

This month's photo challenge, hosted by Donna, is about capturing motion. I feel like I'm on a steep learning curve with my new camera and this challenge stepped that up a notch. Between the unfamiliar equipment and being away, I haven't spent as much time on this challenge as I would have liked. But I can keep practicing.

This is one of the first photos taken with my Panasonic DMC-GX7, snapped without much thought on the automatic scene setting (bright landscape). The slightly blurred wing tips give the illusion of beating wings although anyone would assume the birds are in flight, and therefore the wings are moving.

1/125 s     f/5.6     ISO 200

This photo and the next were taken off my back deck around 9:00 pm, using a tripod and long exposure time (a full minute for the one below). For this photo, I wanted to capture the forsythia bush moving in the wind with the clear residential lights behind. It looks a bit like a blurred mess. The wind was not blowing at the moment I wanted to take the photo, so I jiggled the tree during the exposure. I jiggled it too violently and it looks like a wild storm rather than a gentle breeze.

30.0 sec     f/7.1     ISO 400

This is the opposite of above. I was hoping to pan the camera and create movement in the lights. Instead everything is moving, and I've decided to call this photo "As the World Turns."

60.0 sec     f/7.1     ISO 400

I'm sneaking in one more photo because the two above sort of count as the same thing, don't they?

I used a tripod, indoors, and gently blew on the candle flame as I snapped the photo. The flame's angle and slight blurring contribute to the effect of motion. I think this photo is a little bit ominous with the dark shadows looming. It adds suspense and makes me wonder what comes next in the story. Kind of a shivery excitement.

1.0 sec     f/7.1     ISO 400 

I can think of all sorts of possibilities with this new knowledge - ocean waves, cars at night from the overpass, little grandkids who can't stay still - thanks, Donna, for this fun challenge.

Do check out the other participants' photos. It's sure to be a "moving" experience.  


  1. Wow Laurie, you did some work here. I enjoyed all your images and thought the second and third were good in showing the motion. The candle too. I don't know much, but I'm impressed!

  2. What better way to become familiar with your new camera than to participate in these challenges, LOL? Oh, I had the best of plans to do a candle shot too, but I ran out of steam and didn't get the setup done. I was going to try to capture swirling smoke (after blowing out the candle) with a long exposure. So perhaps you can give that a try sometime!

    I really like the candle image. You can do all kinds of spooky shots for Halloween now! Capturing wildlife movement is tough with a mirrorless camera (because of the digital viewfinder), but you did a nice job on the flying geese. And the moving bush project was fun. You never know what you're going to really get unless you test it out!

    You set a high bar for yourself on this challenge, given that you are learning a new camera, and I think you deserve a round of applause!

  3. Lovely...said she who knows nothing about photography. You are clever Lorrie.
    I wonder who lives in all those little houses. What a lovely childrens' story you could weave around that shot.

  4. Anonymous9:10 AM

    goodness these photo's are wonderfully mysterious. I'm really loving the shadows behind the candle light the little village store fronts look kinda like spooky little faces. The lights of the auto's on the streets and lights of the town in the distance makes us wonder, where is everyone going? lol. Love all your "movement" photo's. I'm new following, thank you for visit to Return to Loblolly and your comment bout our little Buddy so appreciated.

  5. What fun you are having, Lorrie!

    The shadowy village is indeed perfect for a spook story now.

    Enjoy your weekend,

  6. Wow Lorrie, your experiments turned out some great results...I find that I learn more by just doing things like this too...the manual is great to have around but I like to try things on my own sometimes! Great job!

  7. You had some fun experimenting with these ones Lorrie. I like the mood of the last one. And the one you called "As the World Turns" is neat.

  8. This really was a fun challenges because we could do so much with it. I love the candle flame flickering and it's great that you shared some of your ideas. I need a new camera but I know it will be challenging to learn a new one! Hugs!

  9. Looks like you had some fun with this one. I'd like to try some more "set up" shots with these techniques like you did.

  10. You're getting to know your camera quite well Lorrie! The moving forsythia is my favourite - as the world turns has too much motion for me. :-)
    Good idea to play with a candle flame, it has great possibilities.

  11. Great captures, Lorrie!

  12. You make me want to experiment more with using a tripod. Though I have one (thanks Dad), I have yet to use it.
    Your photo of the flying geese makes me eager to see and photograph some. Hopefully we will find a lot this year:)

  13. These are so good. Really GOOD! :)

  14. I think that it is wonderful that you are playing with your camera and not just using the auto buttons. Years ago (25 or so) Steve and I both had new cameras. We took a piece of paper and cut it into around 16 or so pieces. On the pieces we wrote camera challenges. Every two weeks we would draw out one of the papers and have a contest between one another. It was so much fun. That was before digital cameras so two weeks gave us time for shooting and developing. New had a small storage room that we turned into a darkroom. I have some great memories from those days. Thanks for bring those good old days back to my mind. I'm so proud of you . . . not many people actually ever truly learn their cameras.
    Connie :)

  15. Those are nice Lorrie! Thanks for letting us watch you play with your new camera!

    I like the movement of the candle and the birds wings, and I always like to see time lapse - or long exposures!


  16. Great snap shots, dear Lorrie! I have to think about a new camera, mine is about 8 years old!
    Your new one seems to be brilliant!

    I have enjoyed my "armchair traveling" through your posts, love the mountains!
    Best wishes for a sunny and not too cold weekend,

  17. I am clapping for you, really worked on this challenge...and you got some awesome photos. I LOVE the candle...

  18. The bird shot is great! And hats off to you for all your experimenting. No doubt you learned a lot. Can't wait to see your next "lesson" results!

  19. Love all the movement - natural or not. I am enjoying seeing the interpretations of movement. A good challenge.

  20. Great photos, Lorrie! Your new camera is serving you well...although you continue to bring your sense of style and sense of adventure to your photos! I love that you took the time for these photographic experiments. I especially like the candle flame and the shadowy village behind it.

  21. Love all your images. And that village continues to captivate me!

  22. I liked the geese one - there sure is a lot of them around (honking EARLY in the morning!) beautiful in motion!

  23. Lorrie, you have patience that's for sure. there's always so much to learn when using a new camera - they are no longer just 'point and shoot' - even if they are in that particular category! I love the candle and village shot and the view from your house makes me realize you aren't too far from from that beautiful city!
    Good work, I think we'll be seeing many great shots from you in the future. Meanwhile have fun with the camera.

    Happy day -

  24. How fun to try something new. I feel like I am always on a constant learning curve with photography ;-) But enjoy the challenge. Just think in a year all you will know! Clarice

  25. LOL yes to little grandkids...there's motion for you ! Love the candle flame...


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