Monday, August 27, 2007

Open Book Answers Part 2 (by Braydon)

In keeping with the goal of answering all the questions this week, I am taking a crack at the ones I thought were easiest too.... Here we go!

The Fry Family said...
1. What drew you to Haiti? 2. What software program does Braydon use to create those fantastic videos? Blessings,Kristie

We'll answer what drew us to Haiti in another post...
Thank you for the nice complement on the videos - glad you like them! Some are definitely better than others, I am trying to increase my consistency and pacing. In any case, I had been using Adobe Premiere, but my trial version expired (*sheepish shrug*), so now I am using Ulead Video Studio 11 Plus. It's ok; I was much happier with Premiere, but since it's prohibitively expensive and I am not thrilled with Ulead, I am going to try Adobe Premiere Elements. We'll see how it goes; I might have to break down and get the full version of Premiere. For those interested, our video camera is a hard drive based camera - Sony DCR-SR200 (note that the price on the website is waaay off). For me, I couldn't stand transferring tape to computer, drag and drop is so much better.

Do you have any photo tips? What kind of camera are you using? Thanks,-Teena
I did a lot of home work before settling on a camera. I knew we needed point and shoot capabilities for Heather (who has an aversion for technical detail) and a lot of control for me (who likes to exercise those kinds of things). I also wanted to make sure it was pretty fast (startup to shot time, and shot to shot), could handle low light fairly well and was pocket able. We didn't need video on it, or interchangeable lenses or anything like that.

I settled on the Canon Powershot G7. Our good friend Stacey (who is a great photographer) swore by her G4 and now I swear by our G7. I only wish the telephoto was better.

We get almost all our photographic stuff at Beach Camera - they have the lowest prices by far - and for us, the store (for what it is) is about 15 minutes from my office (no shipping). If you do buy anything there, don't get accessories, they are way over priced.

As for photo tips, this is what I have discovered: Heather is an amazing editor. If I cram as much as possible into the picture, get the lighting right and play with the controls, she can work wonders. But here is what I think in general (file under for what it's worth):

1. 2/3 rule: I like highlights of things to to be 2/3'd to the left or right and up or down - almost never in the center of the picture.
2. lighting: I find that black people are best lit from an angle - not above. Deep afternoon and early morning lighting are far and away best - very different, but the best. White people are better from above, but not directly from above. In general, lighting from the side is best for everyone.
3. For portraits, tilt the subject's head forward for a more flattering shot. It elongates the face and adds angle to the chin.
4. Capture a moment, not a portrait: It's better to sit off to the side and catch an event as it unfolds rather than set it up. This could be personal, I hate having my picture taken.
5. Always remember you're not capturing a moment, you are creating an image. You select what goes in the little box, and where it goes. Prep for a moment to happen before it happens.

Rob and Mandy Brelsford said...
I love someone elses question about how you and Braydon met! ~Mandy :)

Heather and I met in college. We went to a small liberal arts college in rural Maine with 1,600 students. We never met until the first day of our final year (which is crazy and just shows how popular she was and I wasn't). I showed up at a party in the basement of a dorm. I spied Heather across the room, she spied me; we met at the chair in the middle and started talking. We have not stopped talking since, and I am sure we never will - thank goodness!

jazzmoh said...
My question is not really profound but why doesn't Braydon post more often?
Why don't I post more.... that is actually really tough. I could blame time, that I am working full time, and starting a company. But Heather has just a demanding schedule and she finds the time. Frankly, I don't have a great answer, I wish I could blame something, but only I am to blame. I love our blog and love to contribute, I am now starting to do a little better with doing more. I have never been good at the regular communication work like this, but I'll work on doing some more.

2 comments: said...

Braydon, great answers. I'm finding it harder and harder to post at all. With our busy schedules it is so hard to sit down at the computer at the end of the day. I do love your gorgeous photo shots of the two cuties! They are simply yummy.

The Fry Family said...

Thanks for the answer about video software, Braydon. I'm going to try out the trial versions of those you mention. Keep your videos coming! -Kristie