Crosby Farm Park Adventures

After my first photography class, my brain went into super hyper photographer drive. All I wanted to do was take pictures, amaaaaaazing pictures, instantly.  Everywhere. Of everything. Naturally, since I just started this adventure, I should be producing photos of exquisite beauty. Right? You know, with all of my beginner’s luck and raw artistic talent.


There is something to be said about having an eye for composing a photo. But there is also at least fifty things to coordinate and be thinking of and focusing on {hah!} for each picture. My instructor told us that each photo stores over 100 pieces of digital information. Or 1000. Lots. This coordination does not come completely naturally.

Enter good, old-fashioned practice. And some humble pie. {mmm pie}


I made my way to Crosby Farm park, a former farm now city park with over 700 acres of trees, wildlife, and flowers, begging me to capture their breath of life and beauty for a moment. It has almost 7 miles of trails and is located right on the Mississippi. They forgot to mention on the welcome sign how many mosquitoes are included in that description. Regardless, I parked and embarked with my camera, puppy, and loads of humble pie flavored ambition.

I didn’t have to go far to notice things worth capturing on {digital} film. The slight breeze and shadows in the trees made it easier for me to try fiddling with my shutter speeds while the little path-side blossoms {and Huckleberry} gave me aperture practice opportunities.

{1} Here are photos that I took with different aperture settings. This has to do with varying the depth of field. Also, I included some of the {messy} not quite perfect shots so you know it’s not all a piece of cake. {mmm cake}



My favorite.

My favorite of the white flowers.  A very low aperture setting makes the background and foreground blurred.












{2} Here are some photos that I took when playing with the “S” setting {adjusting the shutter speed, which changes amount of light let in to a photo}.


This is where we turned around… cleaning a muddy puppy was not on my to-do list for the day.




Short shutter speed. I think around 1/400th of a second.

Short shutter speed. I think around 1/640th of a second.

Same area, medium shutter speed. 1/250 or so.

Same area, medium shutter speed. 1/400 or so.

Longer still. 1/125 of a second.

Longer still. 1/125 of a second. If I kept going, the shutter would be open too long and my wobbly elbows would have blurred the shot too much.

Also a neat tip I learned in class was to use the flash outdoors.  There are natural shadows cast on our subjects and the flash fills in these tiny details. For example, here is a Huckleberry shot with no flash:


And then one with the flash:


Is your mind blown? I thought it might be.

Needless to say, Mr. Huckleberry took a righteous nap after this excursion. Fresh air, tall grasses to chew, and wildlife to smell out makes for one tired pup.

Always curious.

Always curious.


The eyes begin to droop.


a little further…

"Please mom. I love you but no more pictures. Let's go home and nap."

“Please mom. I love you but no more pictures. Let’s go home and nap.”


I’m looking forward to my DSLR II class next week!



2 thoughts on “Crosby Farm Park Adventures

  1. Aly – I love this! You gave some very helpful tips. I’m still trying to manage all of these settings because it’s so much to remember. You’re right that it takes a lot to take one good photo. I love your explanation of aperture & shutter speed. This week our teacher had us practicing movement & high & low shutter speeds to freeze & stop motion (yes, there’s a difference!). You did a great job on your depth of field. You’ve mastered it! I redid my homework and will be posting my redone depth of field b/c I messed up the first time. You are very talented. Happy picture taking!

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