Monthly Archives: June 2008

Blogs are about conversation

It might seem obvious, but it’s worth saying: blogs are about communication. Communication isn’t the same thing as dissemination/syndication, as it implies that readers can participate in a post with critiques, questions, and additional information. Reader participation makes a blog more than simple announcements, it elevates a blog from a simple homepage1 to being a bazaar of ideas.

Participation can take many forms: comments being the most immediate (since the reader can easily browse them when reading the article); but automatic backlinking works too (see pingbacks). The irony is that adding that kind of a system to a blog makes it intrinsically more interesting, both to the reader and the writer.

Rant trigger: some guy presents an idea without any mechanism of receiving feedback. Honourable mention: dmo asks for tips on his blog, without providing a mechanism for readers to comment..

Note to self: Sports photography

I was taking a photos at the Icebreaker soccer tournament this weekend. A few things worth noting

1/100 of a second isn’t nearly as fast as I thought it was. With a telephoto at around 100mm, there was still significant motion blur from the movement of my camera. I’d consciously turned off shake reduction (WHY? WHY? WHY?). If I’d had SR on, maybe I would have been able to use a few more of the shots.
I was shooting at low shutter speeds to try and create a feeling of depth. At 100mm, f12-f16, with a subject ~40 feet away, I had a depth of field of about 35 feet. In my books that’s too much. If I’d forced my camera to stay around f8, I’d have had a much more dramatic DoF: 10 feet; but that would have started interfering with my motion blur. I’m starting to wonder if a monopod would have helped. 1
Shots from behind the net were the most dramatic. A few of the games I was watching went to shoot outs, so I had a nicely choreographed play to track. I opened my focal length up to 50mm, which was probably a mistake, as it didn’t compress the kicker to look close to the goalie, nor did it give me enough of an angle to catch the ball hitting the corners of the net, although stepping back 5 or 10 feet probably would have helped.
I didn’t have a chance to take many “vertical” shots (ie, the camera 90° to horizontal), mostly because the action was moving too quickly.