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How I Got the Picture / Ray Gould

Posted by Teresa Hanafin  August 11, 2008 06:45 AM

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Northern Country by Ray Gould
Northern Country by Ray Gould

Three hours total, across the middle of 200,000+ acres of wildlife sanctuary, we made it gate-to-gate through Baxter State Park in Maine last July. The road was purposely kept dirt and very narrow and sometimes muddy and overrun by neighboring streams that stretched a little too far that day. By the time we were done with this adventurous trek, our vehicle was plastered with mud up to the center of the doors! It was like we went on a deep safari ... well, in fact, we did!

At several spots along the journey, the treetops gave birth to wonderful majestic scenes of mountains. This is one of the 46 mountain peaks viewable through this three-hour trek in the wild!

It was a great day, but the clouds were moving and the angle of this shot required some preparation -- mostly because I wanted to ensure I got the reflection in completely. Remember, capturing a good picture isn't simply focusing your eyes on the object or subject you want to take; make sure you also use the background or the foreground to your advantage.

The sides of the path were very overrun with bushes and small trees, only offering limited pockets of clearing without obstructions from the ground. I knew I wanted to get a shot of the mountain and the water, but couldn't because of what was in front of me. I knew how I wanted the shot to come out, so I had to figure it out without passing up this opportunity.

After walking up and down the trail awhile, the solution came to me. I found the right spot and ended up standing with my car door open and snapping the picture with the camera resting on the roof, tilted vertically. This provided just the right height to clear the brush and provide the reflection and perspective I was looking for. The rest was simply a snap away. As with any shot, I always take multiple shots of the same scene.

Camera Details
Nikon D70
Lens: Nikkor 70-300mm f4-f5.6 G AF
Focal length: 180mm
Aperture: f/10
Shutter speed: 1/200
Handheld (no tripod)
Flash: Flash did not fire, compulsory flash mode (no flash)
Time and date: About 4:20 p.m., July 6, 2007

A big piece of photography isn't simply knowing the technical details of your camera and all the jargon that goes along with it; it is, quite simply, to keep our eyes open. Be observant by always looking around and really appreciating what many fail to see - the beauty around us. There are so many untold stories and pictures that are waiting for us. We just have to take the time and open our eyes and snap the pictures.

Remember, no matter where you go, bring along your camera! There is always something to capture and save for memories.

To print, to share, to cherish.

Happy Captures!


Ray Gould
About Ray
Ray Gould, 34, is a native of Putnam, CT and has been happily married for 9 years to his wife Carrie. They have two children: 11-year-old son Rylah and 9-year-old daughter Talia. Ray is a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) and has been working in the information security/risk management field for the past 12 years. His hobbies include art, digital photography, and writing short stories and poetry with a goal of one day being published. He has been involved in digital photography for 5 years, using a Nikon D70 with a variety of lenses, mostly a 300mm Nikkor. He enjoys the online photo communities on the web, and writes a blog, Digital Eyes & Creative Expressions.

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