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  1. #136

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    8-9-10
    Today’s “Disneyland Photo tip of the Day”, is focused on Essence.

    What I am referring to is the “Essence” of a character. When you photograph a face character such as the Princesses or TinkerBell, the challenge of taking that picture is to try and capture the essence of who that character is, not just a picture of a person dressed as a character.

    To be successful in capturing the true essence of a character, you need to have a few things, patience, timing and space on your memory card.
    The “Patience” will come into play because you will usually be standing in a line for some time waiting for the opportunity to take a picture and need to be patient to get the right moment when your turn arrives.
    The “Timing” is important because there are certain, very brief moments when the character really shines.
    The “Memory Cards” matter because to get one or two really good photos, you will be taking a lot of them.

    The photos below will give an example of the difference between Cast Member or Character. They are all nice pictures but those subtle differences can make all the difference.

    In this shot of Silver Mist at Pixie Hollow, I was there just to take pictures of her and TinkerBell. When I said that I was only there for pictures of her and she had no children to pose with, she just struck a pose for me. It’s a pretty picture, but it doesn’t quite capture the character and looks like a Cast Member playing Silver Mist.


    However, in this photo, she was just finishing taking pictures with a small child and was waving good bye to them. That little moment was the perfect time to capture the true character of Silver Mist.


    On the same day, I saw TinkerBell and when I said that I only wanted pictures of her she just struck a quick pose. It’s cute, but doesn’t have any of the sass or character that you associate with TinkerBell.

    When she was a little more relaxed, I was able to catch a little mischievous smile that makes me see “Tink”.


    In this picture of Princess Tiana, it’s a pretty picture but she almost seems like she is saying “who me?”


    But by waiting a moment longer for a child to approach her, the true Princess appeared and it made for a much better picture.


    The last time I went to Pixie Hollow, I had a better plan to get the Cast Member to relax and have the Character shine. I had my wife interact and chat with TinkerBell but stay just out of the frame. This way the Cast Member was able to have some fun and Tink got to be “TINK”. At first, she wasn’t sure what was going on, only interacting with my wife while I took pictures as you can see here.


    She very quickly relaxed and had some fun with it and it really shows in the following pictures.




    When taking pictures of characters performing in a parade or show, there is a simple trick to capturing just the right moment with a clear sharp picture where they aren’t moving real fast or their hands all blurry. “Listen to the music and wait for the crescendo.” Right when the music hits the power note or finale, they characters strike a pose and that is the perfect time to snap like crazy. Here are a few examples from Tiana’s Riverboat Jamboree.




    I hope these little tips will help you capture the true “essence” of the characters and make your memories with them all the more special.

    Happy Snapping!
    © Michael Greening 2010

    (On a side note to this discussion, the last time I was at Pixie Hollow, I witnessed a family tradition that I thought was just brilliant and wanted to share. The lady in front of us was with her young daughter on the girls first trip to Disneyland. The young girl was wearing an old pair of Mickey Ears with two names on the back. We asked her which name was hers and the mother told us that they were her ears from her first visit to Disneyland 30 years ago. She saved them for her daughters first visit and had the girls name embroidered above hers. She will also save them for her daughters daughter’s first visit and so on and so on.) I thought it was a wonderful tradition that some of you might want to do as well.
    Life is far too short for bland food!


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  2. #137

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Quote Originally Posted by Bobd20011 View Post

    I also hope that you will get into more post process details. However, I am LOVING your tips so far. They are easily accessible for beginners like myself.
    You got it. I will do a new post processing technique tomorrow. It's a cool one!
    Life is far too short for bland food!


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  3. #138

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Quote Originally Posted by Hot Sauce 1 View Post

    This led me to the conclusion that if you are taking pictures at night or in dark rides (where you cannot use a flash), keep the lens as wide open as you can and do not zoom at all. Use the largest file size you can and get as close to the subject as you can. Then you can crop the photo to keep what you want and it will be a lot clearer and sharper than if you used the zooming feature.

    Also, a tip on holding and using Point & Shoots. If your camera has a viewfinder, use it instead of the LCD screen. Your hands are much more stable and don't move as much when the camera is close to you. The further you hold the camera from your body, the easier it moves when you press the shutter. If you do use the LCD screen, make sure your elbows are bent and hold the camera as close to you as possible. Also, make sure your feet are not together. Always spread your feet to shoulder width apart so you don't sway as much when you stand still.

    One other major tip is to set your camera to Continuous Shooting and take 3 or 4 shots at a time. The first one is almost always blurry from you pressing the shutter. By the time #3 fires off, you are holding the camera more steady. This really helps when shooting stuff like fireworks.

    Please let me know if any of this helps.

    Mike
    Thanks for the tips! I'll hopefully make it up to the parks some time next week and will be sure to post my pics.

  4. #139

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Quote Originally Posted by Row2k View Post
    Thanks for the tips! I'll hopefully make it up to the parks some time next week and will be sure to post my pics.
    Please do! I would love to know how it works out. Also remember that if you are doing any shots where you are setting the camera on something like a trash can or fence post to stabilize it, use the 2 second timer so the camera has stopped moving from you pressing the shutter.
    Life is far too short for bland food!


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  5. #140

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    8-10-10
    Today’s “Disneyland Photo Tip of the Day” is something I like to call Stop/Motion Fusion.
    I don’t know if there is another “proper term” for it simply because I have never seen or heard of it being done before. I am nowhere near so self diluted to think that I am the first person to do it. I’m only saying that I haven’t seen it. So with no further ado or gilding the lily, I give you Astro Orbiter Stop Motion Fusion.


    I shot these photos the last time I was at Disneyland in late June, right after I shot the previously discussed pictures of Tomorrowland at night and right before I shot the afore mentioned pictures of Pixie Hollow. This was done by taking these 4 long exposure photos, none of which I was very happy with because they didn’t have all the blur of spinning light that I was hoping for.

    Aperture F/6.3, Shutter Speed 2.5 seconds, ISO 100 (too dark)


    Aperture F/6.3, Shutter Speed 5 seconds, ISO 100 (Getting Better)


    Aperture F/6.3, Shutter Speed 2.5 seconds, ISO 200 (better but still not enough blur)


    Aperture F/6.3, Shutter Speed 4 seconds, ISO 200 (better, but not enough blur)


    I put all 4 of those pictures into Photomatix and processed them the same way as I would a HDR image, not caring that they weren’t of the extreme over/under exposure that would normally be associated with the HDR process. This is the result of that process, which I am much happier with.


    Before I took the pictures of the Astro Orbiter spinning, I took some of it sitting still, that I was happy with.


    Just for fun and to see if it would work, I then put the HDR image and the still shot into Photomatix and processed them together as an Exposure Fusion which gave the result at the top of the post.

    Here is another example of Stop/Motion Fusion using the other shots of the Astro Orbiter that I showed last week.


    These Stop/Motion Fusion photos seem to me like I was watching it spin and my eyes stopped it for a moment and captured that fraction of a second between motion and sitting still. It doesn’t follow the rules of HDR or Exposure Fusion but one of the first rules of photography is “There are no Rules”.

    This came about as nothing more than an experiment I thought of two weeks after I took the pictures. The next time I visit Disneyland, I plan to explore this technique in a much more creative and intentional fashion. I encourage all of you to give it a go as well. I would love to see what you come up with.

    Happy Snapping!
    © Michael Greening 2010
    Life is far too short for bland food!


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  6. #141

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    That is GENIUS! The Astro Orbitor stop/motion fusion pics are absolutely gorgeous. Very innovative (or should I say, "Innoventive").

  7. #142

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Quote Originally Posted by WDITrent View Post
    That is GENIUS! The Astro Orbitor stop/motion fusion pics are absolutely gorgeous. Very innovative (or should I say, "Innoventive").
    "Innoventive", I LOVE IT! I might have to use that someday.
    Life is far too short for bland food!


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  8. #143

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    ^Tom Morrow, I believe, already has. But then again, who goes in there anyway?

  9. #144

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Quote Originally Posted by Hot Sauce 1 View Post
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]I don’t know if there is another “proper term” for it simply because I have never seen or heard of it being done before. I am nowhere near so self diluted to think that I am the first person to do it. I’m only saying that I haven’t seen it. So with no further ado or gilding the lily, I give you [B]Astro Orbiter Stop Motion Fusion.
    I did it about 2 years ago with the Orbiter. Nice shot!
    You can never run out of imagination. The more you use, the more you gain.

  10. #145

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    This is amazing:

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  11. #146

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Quote Originally Posted by WDITrent View Post
    ^Tom Morrow, I believe, already has. But then again, who goes in there anyway?
    LOL!
    That explains why I hadn't heard it before.
    Life is far too short for bland food!


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  12. #147

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Quote Originally Posted by orbitalpunk View Post
    I did it about 2 years ago with the Orbiter. Nice shot!
    I knew I wasn't smart enough to actually discover something new. I want to see....
    Life is far too short for bland food!


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  13. #148

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Quote Originally Posted by Dustysage View Post
    This is amazing:
    Thanks Dusty! The next time I go, I want to try it with the Teacups, Carousel and the Astro Orbiter again only from the front with the Tomorrowland sign in the foreground. I bought some Neutral Density filters with my WOC Amazon gift card (THANK YOU AGAIN!) so I will use those to see if I can do it during the daytime too.
    Life is far too short for bland food!


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  14. #149

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    I'd love to see the stop/motion fusion done for a monorail. That has the potential to be awesome.

  15. #150

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Quote Originally Posted by WDITrent View Post
    I'd love to see the stop/motion fusion done for a monorail. That has the potential to be awesome.
    Ooh, good idea. I'll add that to my list of things to attempt.
    Life is far too short for bland food!


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