Tag Archives: western massachusetts

Where I’ve been…

Obvious: I have not posted a proper blog entry or update since September.

Reason: I have been taking five classes and working two jobs.

Details: I’ve been taking some some interesting classes at UMass Amherst, such as web design for journalists, investigative journalism, and a film workshop at Hampshire College. 

I’m learning web design and building a portfolio website in a web design class, taught by Brian McDermott, which I will publish at the end of the semester. That’s a huge step up from this blog, which I’m excited about. The website will creatively display my work and resume. I’ve been using and learning Dreamweaver as well as Flash to build my website up from scratch. I haven’t used a single template, which has proven to be a great learning experience. I will provide more details about my website when it’s published.

The film workshop, taught by Abraham Ravett, at Hampshire College is pretty awesome. It’s been a difficult transition from working digital to working analog, but because I have such a solid grasp in camera fundamentals like film speed, aperture, frame rate, and shutter speed, I’ve definitely had an easier time than some of my fellow classmates. The class requires students to work in 16mm black and white reversal film shot on a Bolex and edit projects on a Steen Beck. I’ve transfered pretty much all of my footage to video, but the transfers aren’t that great, which is kind of disappointing considering how beautiful film looks projected as opposed to scan lines and pixels. I’m still working on editing my most recent shorts in Final Cut Pro, which I will likely upload at the end of the semester.

The investigative journalism course, taught by Steve Fox, has taken up most of my time and has been a challenging learning experience. We are investigating and reporting on the Phoebe Prince bullying case and its aftermath. The UMass journalism class is partnered with MassLive.com, so everything we produce gets published on the site. Our articles are published on a blog page which can be found at masslive.com/bullying. My beat is covering the South Hadley School Committee and related matters. My final project for this semester will be a video, which I will link to when it debuts.

Work has been keeping me busy editing various wildlife videos. I’ve recently edited videos on swamp pink, bog turtles, and puffins. They will debut at a biologists conference in February; I am uncertain if they will be published online.

This semester has been far too busy, but it will all be worth it come mid-December. As a prelude to next semester (my last and final semester of college), I hope I will be able to update much more frequently as well as have more time to play around with After Effects, cameras, and documentary work – oh and looking for a job.

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Photos of the Days – Lighting Is Key

August 7, 2010

DARK DINING ROOM: Matthew Larsen and the Documents.

August 8, 2010

Tuft

August 9, 2010

This is the second time in this one year project that I have forgotten to take a photo.

August 10, 2010

Deer hoof.

August 11, 2010

Spider light

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Photos of the Days – A Tremendous Lot

The last few weeks have been filled with business, as one can assume. I’ve been working and interning and enjoying the weekends fully.

My place of work sent me to do some shooting on Martha’s Vineyard. I had a great time and got a good sense of the island – that is a less stereotyped version of what I was expecting. It’s not all rich people is what I mean. Also, it’s probably one of the most beautiful beach/town areas I’ve ever been to. There are lots of farms and cute beaches, beautiful stone walls, fields, light woods, and small businesses. And the ferry ride was relaxing.

At my internship, I moved up from transcribing audio files, to checking audio files, to also writing grants in my spare time, and (get ready, hear it comes) all the way up to script syncing footage to the transcripts. Basically what that means, is I get to sit at the Avid and sync the recorded footage for the documentary up with transcriptions of the corresponding footage. It’s a bit of a tedious task, but I’ve already learned something new, which I don’t have the opportunity to do, and it’s a good skill.

Stay tuned, Maine puffin action is coming soon…

June 29, 2010

Garden sun.

June 30, 2010

 

Field sun.

July 1, 2010

Yes, that's a puppy holding a stuffed bunny.

July 2, 2010

Lilly with an aperture of 1.8, yes.

July 3, 2010

Cow affection in Hadley, Massachusetts.

July 4, 2010

This was once a nest with birds.

July 5, 2010

All the gear I had to carry to Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts.

July 6, 2010

Clay Gay Head cliffs on Martha's Vineyard.

July 7, 2010

Probably the hottest apartment in Northampton, Massachusetts.

July 8, 2010

Probably one of the best pictures I've taken of my friend's puppies.

July 9, 2010

Casino signage.

July 10, 2010

Thai pizza.

July 11, 2010

Garlic top.

July 12, 2010

Milkweed.

July 13, 2010

11 years, going strong.

July 14, 2010

Really, this was boring.

July 15, 2010

Honestly, the balloon just floated right over to us.

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Photos of the Days – Local Travel

June 22, 2010

Sunderland/Deerfield bridge over the Connecticut River in Massachusetts.

June 23, 2010

Mom at the edge of the garden.

June 24, 2010

Candle light with a sea captain.

June 25, 2010

Insects are there even in the dark.

June 26, 2010

Chasing dinosaurs on the Connecticut River in Holyoke, Massachusetts.

June 27, 2010

Admiring butterflies at Magic Wings in Deerfield, Massachusetts

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The Rain Drop Advantage

Usually when it rains, me and every other photographer it seems takes photos of the rain drops as the subject matter. Not wanting to make this cliché photo mistake, something sparked inside of me to use the rain drops as a texturing tool rather than the subject matter.

No background bokeh for these rain drops.

I was sitting at my family’s computer, which involves a lot of waiting due to our dial-up connection. the sun was setting and I turned to the window in which it leaked in and hit me in the face.

In one window pane, remarkably, the pane that the sun rays were shining through was covered in glistening rain drops. Then, the spark came! Photo of the day!

But, of course, I had to get this classic shot.

Ran to get my camera, threw the rain drops out of focus, the fence in focus, and snapped away.

This further inspired me to go outside and take more photographs while my email waited to load, thus, today, I bring you a new, beautiful, and hopefully not cliché photo slideshow.

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Day at the skate park

Click to play the slideshow.

If you really know me – I mean if you really really really know me, you might know that one of my secret dreams is too shoot and edit skateboarding and BMX videos. 

Big air and a spin.

 

Ever since I was young, like, say, preschool, I have been obsessed with skateboarding, BMX, surfing, snowboarding, and skiing. Extreme sports you can call them in a bundle. Doesn’t matter, really. 

I just love the tricks, the culture, the idea of breaking the barrier and doing something that most people can’t even learn to do.

Brother going for a feeble grind.

 

Anyways, I took my brother (BMXer, mountain biker, DJ) to the Greenfield Area Skate Park (where I would spend some summer days skateboarding) to finally try my hand at photographing some riders.

Here’s a slideshow of what I got. First shot, so I am always looking for pointers! Always room for improvement.

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Photos of the Days – Beautiful Last Few Days

May 29, 2010

This photo isn't necessarily about what's the focus of the frame.

May 30, 2010

Big air at the Greenfield Area Skate Park.

May 31, 2010

Mom.

June 1, 2010

One window, one trillion rain drops, one sunset.

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