I'm a life-long native of New Mexico. I live in the state's largest city, Albuquerque, population a little over one-half million. My first camera was a 35mm Olympus OM-1 film camera. My first Nikon rig was an N80 with a 24-120 Nikkor lens, purchased in 2001. My second Nikon was a D200. My current camera is a D750.
Opportunities for photography abound. New Mexico is renowned for its light and wide-open vistas. I like to shoot people -- portraits, newborns, maternity; landscapes and scenics. We have many wonderful opportunities for photography in and near New Mexico–Carlsbad Caverns, Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge, White Sands National Monument, Native American pueblos, mountains, aspens, volcanic badlands, historic sites, bicycle races, and the annual hot-air balloon fiesta, for just a few.
Now that my wife Amy and I have more time, we hope to get out and visit some of the photogenic places on our bucket lists, like Bryce and Zion Canyons, Yosemite and the west coast highway.
I prefer natural light, especially golden hour and blue hour, although I have been using flashes, fluorescent lamps, hot lights, umbrellas and reflectors to modify light. As to composition, I like to use a wide-angle lens to photograph architecture and do street photography; a 28-75 is my walk-around lens for its flexibility. I also employ a 70-300 telephoto for candids, wildlife and landscapes.
I stumbled on Nikonians when the site turned up in a search I had performed back in 2005. I was looking for advice using my then-new D200 following the typical "I upgraded Lightroom and now I can't download my images." I joined because it made me feel more professional. Nikon owners … we have to stick together.
Although I initially just wanted help over that particular upgrade speedbump, I stayed around for the past 13 years for the camaraderie, and the chance to share experiences and tips.
When looking to find great subject material, as sages like co-founder J. Ramón Palacios, Ernesto Santos and others have said, be situationally aware, don't just look in the direction your lens is pointing. Look behind you, you never know what you might miss! I was able to recall the advice during an engagement reception photo session. The "all the relatives of the couple" photo had just been taken, and the group was breaking up to go back to the reception. I had relaxed, thinking I could put my camera down, when out of the corner of my eye I saw a preteen girl striking a cute pose for her relatives. I quickly raised my camera and took the shot. It turned out great.
My most rewarding time was when Amy and I were driving through the Blue Ridge Mountains, and I was able to show her how to make velvety the waterfalls we saw by the side of the road. Amy is a quick learner, and very gracious. I know the session helped her gain confidence to start using Manual mode. She instinctively knew how to compose her shots, picking sections of the waterfalls that would be the most interesting.
Amyshoots with a 14-year-old D100. Her favorite lenses are a 24-120 for its versatility, and a 35mm (50mm on her DX camera). She has the personality that allows her to get up close to her subjects. She does enjoy photography, mostly landscapes and weddings. When we shoot weddings, she handles situations that require being close to the action, whereas I like to hang back with a telephoto lens.”
Larry, it has been fun spending a little time imagining being with you as you have described some of your shoots. Thanks for the support you give to Nikonians members and for the enjoyment we experience viewing at your images. We look forward to seeing your photography from locations on your bucket list in the near future.
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