Boy, was it cold! It was my practice to prepare everything I need, photography wise, in my bag. Usually, I try to dump as much as I can in my bag (including clothes) but this time, since I thought I'd be walking around a lot, and a huge and fully stuffed bag might get me into trouble with accommodation (some lockers are not big enough), I thought of keeping it as light as possible. And that means, I didn't bring extra shirts, extra socks, extra towels, and toiletries. Where which, I forgot to bring gloves and a hat. Boy, was it really cold!
Note: Every image posted in this particular blog was taken from RAW, small increase of contrast, then converted to Jpeg. Sorry for the quality.
It's the missing gloves that got me into a lot of pain. As I walk around carrying the tripod, I had to switch hands every minute to warm the other in my pocket. This is where I also learned the use of a tripod's "leg warmers." I never realized how the tripod could be painfully cold to the touch when exposed to such weather. It was so cold that I find it really hard to make minor adjustments. My goodness, I was really unprepared. I kept telling myself, "Whatever it takes..." but I wondered how long could that mindset last.
As I mentioned a lot, Scott Kelby's lecture is stuck in my brain. So I walked around this over-pass repeatedly, looking for a frame I could test shoot. The structure in itself is appealing. But the surroundings and a lot of clutter makes this architecture a bit hard to photograph. At least, to me. Snow was also a bit fresh and it seems only a few people walked around here. I had to be a bit careful where I walk 'cause I didn't want to disturb the snow. I wouldn't want so many footsteps marked as I know it could be distracting to the overall scene.
I realized I got stuck in this scene and kept taking repeated shots of the same subjects and frames. Luckily, a drunk passed by and made me a bit nervous so I hurried downstairs to avoid him. At this moment, I again remembered Scott's lecture. And since not a lot of my test shots seem to wow me, I might as well try to take some pictures from a distance. There was one shot I imagined would have been awesome, though: An overhead shot. But unless I could manage to get on top of a building, and at a good angle, I don't think I could produce it. So I settled for something a bit more plausible.
"Can't go above it? Then go below it!" I chuckled as I crossed the street. I was a bit nervous and had to move fast as there still are some people passing by at this time. Jay-walking alone attracts attention and much more by staying in the middle taking pictures.
But I wasn't about to give up just yet. I still haven't found the one frame I'd be happy with. And I'm also worried that the blue hour seems absent. It was already 6 am. and I don't see a tinge of blue light. I was afraid the sun would rise without warning. So I decided to climb up the over-pass one more time.
I know I have another option if I wanted to shoot really low. Reverse the center pole. But again, with the cold, the tripod are just too cold to the touch that it hurts my hands to adjust them. So I moved on.
Continued on the next blog.