Thursday, January 26, 2012

SCDG Thursday night scrimmage (19 January 2012)

some photo highlights from a recent black and white scrimmage.  I found myself shooting with wider lenses than usual (35/60mm instead of 60/90mm) and I'm trying to get a feel for shooting manual flash instead of with TTL.

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Monday, January 2, 2012

a nocklebeast retrospective of 2011

Can a retrospective really cover only one year?  Shouldn't a retrospective cover a lifetime of photography, or at least a decade of photography?

Yeah,

well...

whatever!


In the last few years, in an exercise of ego and editing, I've selected my best photos of the year.

This year's best of 2011 set (as in past years) has been dominated by roller derby.  During the derby season, I'll maintain a photo set of my roller derby favorites, adding few photos from each bout to the set. This year's roller derby faves at one point numbered around 240+ photos; I pruned about 60 photos from the set to get it down to 175+ and then gave up.  I made a best of 2011 photo set from the best of the non-derby photos and the best of the favorite derby photos, here:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/nocklebeast/sets/72157628553001173/


The following is my attempt at being ruthless... picking out about 20 of the best of the best of 2011.

I believe it was Sean Reid of Reid Reviews that said that entire worlds exist in the out of focus regions of photographs.  I've been inspired by Carsten D's (among others) dreamy out of focus landscapes over the last few years.

All waves and ripples to hit the shore of California originate some where across the Pacific Ocean; it's just not that important where the ripples came from.  The only thing that is important is the current ripple, and after that ripple has exhausted itself, another ripple will be on it's way.

where the ripple comes from is unimportant
where the ripple comes from is unimportant

Here we have a bunch of rollergirls OCCUPYING THE PIVOT LINE at the start of the jam.   The out of focus background glows and Maiden Hades' dark lipstick looks particularly good in black and white.

poised on the pivot line
poised on the pivot line

In roller derby, penalties happen,

queen and liv got penalties
queen and liv got penalties

At this year's Turkey Bowl (a SCDG fundraiser), I brought my fancy camera, and at one point proceeded to take photos of bowling balls. After the following photograph, where a bowler from the team in the next lane over grabbed at my bowling ball just as John throws his orange rock... I stopped taking photos of bowling balls... I knew I wasn't going to top this on that evening... in fact, this just might be the best photo of a bowling ball EVER!

mark it an eight
mark it an eight (The best photo of a bowling ball EVER!)

SCDG's warehouse is is made of concrete... it's a Fight Club sort of venue. Here, Liv N. LetDie is giving Missus Unshine a hardtime.  I particularly like the out-of-focus glow from the door that is propped open behind the action.

liv gives unshine a hard time
liv gives unshine a hard time

It seems to be today's convention, that to demonstrate some sort of technical prowess, SOMETHING in the photograph must be in focus.  Which makes sports photography with a tilt lens totally ridiculous.  To top it off, my ridiculous lens is attached to my old film SLR loaded with film that is only available in Asia (not North America), which means I'll probably need to schedule another business trip to Hong Kong this year. The film is Fuji Natural 1600... daylight film shot in the tungsten light of the Santa Cruz Civic.  This produces delightfully orange Oompa-Loompa skin tones.

I sometimes wonder if this is what roller girls see during a jam
I sometimes wonder if this is what roller girls see during a jam

During tea-breaks and lunch time, I'll often take a film rangefinder or a little plastic film camera with me.  The following photograph is from one of the rare times I had a digital rangefinder during my lunch hour.  A woman in my peripheral vision shouts out and laughs at some one across the sidewalk in the courtyard outside Starbucks on Pacific Avenue.

nailed the dismount
nailed the dismount


Astronaughty always looks intense .  I sat at turn one during Bay Area's championship bout.  With the slow moving packs coming off the pivot line, the jammers seemed to hit the pack for the first time about 15 feet from me.


trying to find a way through the 
pack
trying to find a way through the pack

This one's from Bay Area's season opener.  I love the back lighting on this one.

way to go Ho!
way to go Ho!

Glowing feathers from SCDG's fundraiser with Sin Sisters Burlesque.

peek-a-boo
peek-a-boo

At next year's Holiday Parade in Santa Cruz, I got to try to shoot more shots of the crowd and less of the parade.

it's Santa Claus!
it's Santa Claus!

Beaver Fever opens for Sin Sisters Burlesque/SCDG

beaver fever
beaver fever

Rizzo Rogue is sooo pretty.

Rizzo Rogue
Rizzo Rogue

Shooting around the neighborhood with a box camera with a reversed lens.

toot
toot!

A roller derby portrait combining a demonstration of technical prowess (SOMETHING IS IN FOCUS) with entire worlds contained in the out of focus

poised to re-enter play from the penalty box
poised to re-enter play from the penalty box

 A collision.
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One of my most popular photos of the season.  I was shooting at the pivot line when I spotted the sign in the penalty box.  I instantly knew I needed to move to the the penalty box for photos.

framed
framed

Bay Area holds one of their bouts at the Kezar Pavilion in San Francisco.  This venue allowed me to move around a bit more than their other pavilion venues which resulted in more photos of team huddles and what-not.  Alas, food and booze are not allowed in the venue, which probably explains why no bouts are scheduled there this next season.

grrr!
grrr!

After a few bouts in Monterey, I ventured away from my usual sedementary style (of just sitting in one spot) and found that turn two seemed to have some nice light and the jammers often hit the pack there on their first pass.

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Just about every online article about bicyclists or cycling will feature a dumb-ass motorist comment about spandex. Would you prefer cyclists wear tweed, sir?  I believe this is one of UCSC's physics professors speeding down Soquel in a tweed jacket.

I like your tweed sir
I like your tweed sir (Feeling the need for tweed!)

If you can't get enough of the best of 2011, here's the full set (which includes about 60 more photos)

http://www.flickr.com/photos/nocklebeast/sets/72157628553001173/