August 7th, 2021
Earlier this week, went with my photo buddy to the zoo to do some shooting, after I got off from the money-job, and the weather was tolerable to do so.
Sure Wish I Could Reach That
Was nice to go freely, where we could go where wanted, and at our own pace… usually I attend with my younger bro’ and his fam-damily, so been limited to where they venture. I could, of course, head over and go to the zoom whenever I damn well please, and have the entire time to myself to wander freely… just haven’t done so yet. So, was appreciative of my photo buddy asking if I wanted to tag along with her… can’t say how nice it is to have a photo buddy after all these years of wishing I had one to go shoot with ☺️
The giraffe above left, was the first area we stopped by, as she said a new baby was born recently… we never saw it… but, this one was just crackin’ me up… as it just stood there looking up at this tree, tryin’ and wishin’ to reach the branch so as to partake of it’s luscious leaves goodness, but unsuccessful in doing so… so, just stood there looking up longingly at it.
The female lions, above right, is probably my favorite shot from the day… was an HDR shot as they were backlit, but which I shot manually, as I didn’t have the camera set up to do bracket shots (still am just not in tune with this damn Fuji, even though it’s been well over a year of having it)… so, took a shot, then manually decreased the shutter speed in half, for each series of subsequent shots… which, thank goodness for image alignment in Lightroom/Photoshop… actually, that final image above, is my second version, as the first I messed up on… still not 100% pleased with it… but, close enough.
I still am conflicted with the whole zoo thing… one half of me enjoys the opportunity to be able to see these animals that I would never have the ability to see otherwise… while at the same time, the other half of me, not condoning the caged, locking up of the creatures, in environments far from their own natural habitats. So, zoo trips are a battle within… loving getting to see these creatures, firsthand in front of me, learn of them, marvel of them… while all the while being sad of them being caged up, not free, their existence being penned up in a small, fake environments for our amusement.
When taking photos of them, tried to remove the fact that they are caged creatures, in simulated environments… like the tiger above, tried to remove as much of the fact that a chain link fence was in the background’s top left, to no avail… well, am sure I could have totally done so in Photoshop… just didn’t feel it was worthy the effort to do so.
As the title of the image above relays, just liked the juxtaposition of the old brick structure, against the construct of the dome backdrop… which the Desert Dome thing… something that I have captured multiple times throughout the years, as it’s unusual self amongst the skyline I always find interesting… which, ironically though, I actually find to be the most boring part of the zoo.
We ended up lastly going to the aquarium, which is a staple stop of each and every zoo visit, and worthy so, as you can’t go wrong photographically there. It recently was remodeled, and these shiny waves atop it were new and neat looking.
Full wall enclosures, of course, produce unique image opportunities… like of the two young ladies below –
Coming Out Of The Deep
Playfully Curious Duo
The pièce de résistance of the aquarium, being of course, the wraparound tunnel portion, where the sea life can be viewed as it swims on either side, and above you… I always fancy one side of it, that has the deeper breadth of water, as the lighting is always intriguing, and creating of wonderful scenes, of marine life swimming in and out of the light/dark pools of light from above…
There are a couple sharks in there, to which is the highlight of kids, young and old…
Next water creatures to get all the “Oh, look!” and “oohs & ahhs”, being the manta rays, and tortoises in there…
The bane and nemesis to shooting in certain parts though (outside all the other pesky people getting in the way 😏), are reflections… like there used to be this one side, just outside the tunnel, where it was floor to ceiling viewing into the water area, that I used to like the best, but with rearranging of things, they put these brightly lit exhibits to the back of you facing into the water area, that you now just can’t seem to get an angle where they are not reflected in the glass. As well as my (of all shirts I had to wear!) white shirt, with blue plaid patterned striping on it, where I either had to toss the image because it’s reflection was overtaking all of it, or needing to severely crop, to get it out, or resort to removing it in Photoshop.
Swimmin' In The Deep
Okay, so well, that’s it.
Thanks again to my photo buddy for asking me along, as well as smuggling me in with her family pass… didn’t get to spend as long, and make more of a full day of it, because of my having to work… but, was still nice, and a good outing.
Had been thinking of taking the latter days of next week off (wait, that’s the week after next week), so as to go up to this campground, to do some starry night sky shooting of the Perseids… but, not gonna happen.
Next shooting, will most likely be some documentary images of an addition to the family… and then the subsequent portraiture shoot of her new self…
Until then, stay healthy and safe, and happy shooting.