Wednesday, September 11, 2013
A Photography Talk along the Banks of Lake Erie
We were visiting Presque Isle State Park in Erie PA last weekend and took a few moments to sit on a bench and spend some time enjoying the quiet landscape.
A man carrying a camera with a large telephoto lens on it walked over to talk with us. After a few moments I realized he had a DCNR (PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources) patch on his shirt and I assumed he worked with the park service. It turned out that he is a volunteer ambassador and the official "volunteer" photographer for the park.
Every day Brian Bechtold drives out to the state park and takes photos of wildlife while hiking or from the kayak he keeps strapped to the top of his official four wheel drive vehicle.
We talked for over 30 minutes about his work which he absolutely loves with me peppering the conversation with questions about equipment and apertures and ISO and all the things that seem so difficult to figure out when taking photos. And unfortunately, take a lot of the fun out of it.
While we talked, Brian had his camera slung across his shoulder where he says it doesn't really get in the way when he is moving around. The source for these slings is BlackRapid.com
And he said to be sure to get the swivel hook for when you attach your camera to the sling. Can you say Christmas present?
We also talked about Photoshop (PS) and Lightroom (LR) as being the two most popular software programs used by photographers. I have been thinking about updating my PS4 but the cost is prohibitive: about $600. I have LR 2, but haven't really checked on its update cost yet.
Brian suggsted that I use LR for organizing photos (which I used to do when I was taking a class on it) and also look into buying PS Elements 11 instead of updating PS4 (a much more reasonable purchase). For my personal photo editing, the Elements program would make more sense.
We thoroughly enjoyed our talk with the park's ambassador, whose hobby really interested me and had me wishing we lived a lot closer than two hours from the state park.