Object Lesson: Think Before You Act (Day 118)
Ok, this is going to take a couple of minutes to explain but I think everyone can learn something from my frustrating experience this morning. If you don’t care to read on, I will summarize: I am dumb. That said, here we go.
I have been looking forward to taking today’s shot for a couple of weeks. No, not the self-portrait above, but the great shot I took earlier this morning of a jumping cow. Let me back up.
Once a year, a local community farm holds an event called The Dancing of the Ladies. At a prescribed time, they let their milking cows out of their dairy barn for the first time since the previous fall. Much to my surprise, when you first let a cooped-up cow out into the open, they act like puppies; running, kicking, and jumping all over the pasture. And when you let a herd out all at once, the results are quite comical, as one might imagine. The whole event only lasts about 15 minutes (cows tire quickly) but that isn’t enough to stop a crowd of 100+ from showing up for the spectacle.
So where is the jumping cow shot you might ask? To answer that question, I will now provide step-by-step instructions for what NOT to do when faced with a neat photo opportunity like the one described above:
1. Pick an appropriate lens and pack your gear;
2. Show up ahead of time to get a good spot to shoot from;
3. Turn on your camera just minutes before the action, only to realize that you haven’t brought a memory card;
4. Embarrass yourself by asking to borrow one from the local newspaper photographer standing next to you, whom you have never met and whose work you really admire;
5. Take shots;
6. Review shots in camera and think to yourself that you are an awesome photographer;
7. Giddily race home to offload the card so it can be returned to its owner;
8. Realize when you can’t access your pictures that you have forgotten to format the card to your camera before taking them;
9. Corrupt the card as you desperately try to resolve the problem;
10. Scramble frantically to find a suitable replacement for the card you have just destroyed;
11. Admit your incompetence to the photojournalist when you meet them to return it;
12. Wash, rinse, repeat.
Footnote: I do have to say that the pro I borrowed the card from, Michael Moore from the Keene Sentinel, was really cool about it and I was able to get him to consider speaking at one of our upcoming camera club meetings so I guess all was not lost … other than the Pulitzer Prize winning jumping cow shot that will never be.
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