Monday, September 19, 2011

Balancing Act

Balancing Act

Dog Blog Post #451: Monday Daily Shoot assignment:

Make a photograph today with a central point of interest in it.

This seemed to be a perfect opportunity to set up "the set", but it was a really long day and I didn't have time to dream up a theme, let alone find, haul out, arrange bits and dogs, and then put everything away.

So - this is just the raw backboard from "the set", and nothing else.

I was pretty sure I could stack the cookies on Henry's nose, but had never been successful with Zachary before.

Boy, did he surprise me! Perhaps he was miffed that I started with Henry, as Zachary usually gets the first crack at assignments.

(Which is why Henry shows up more often - not because he's better, or I love him more, but because I get all the kinks worked out with (more) patient Zachary, then switch to fresher horses (Henry) and usually get better shots.)

Balancing Act

But not today. Today I started with Henry, because I was pretty sure Zachary wouldn't hold still long enough and I wanted to make sure I got a shot.

The camera was on the tripod. I had a 5 second initial delay (probably should have set it to 8 seconds) and then had it automagically take a picture every 3 seconds for a total of 9 shots. I put him in a stay where I wanted him and focused on the center/side of his head that had the greatest chance of staying under the focus point. I pushed the button, and moved in front of him, and began stacking, counting after every shot and leaning back right before the camera was due to click again.

Alas, I found that trying to stack them in a single tower was a bad idea, as the cookies are curved and they just slid off one another.

Plan B: Same a above, only put a pre-stacked stack on on the nose and lean back once it was balanced. That worked much better!

Henry actually managed to balance 4 cookies, but he pulled his head back and the camera focused on the backboard instead, making the shot blurry.

After I finished with Henry, Zachary clearly wanted to give it a go, so I figured why not? Cookie Parity had to be maintained, anyway.

Wouldn't you know, not only did Zachary come through with some lovely shots, but he even managed a stack of three. In focus.

Go Zachary!

Scavenge Challenge shot...

1944 Quarter

... along with my long winded description from flickr:

Scavenge Challenge September 2011  - "7) Present a man-made item more than 50 years old in a setting appropriate to its use or era."

This is a 1944 US Quarter, worth $0.25 when it was minted 67 years ago. According to a random site I found using google, $0.25 in 1944 is worth $3.15 in today's money.

For the curious, $3.15 will buy you a Tall Cafe Mocha from Starbucks (the small size, followed by Grande and then Vente.) And yes, I actually stood there and scanned the price list to find something just the right price!

I don't usually drink Cafe Mocha's, but I bought one just for this challenge, and rather enjoyed it.

How did I come by the coin?

I collect US State Quarters in a well-intended but less-than-diligent fashion, usually opting to pour out the small change jar ever few months to see if anything of interest has accumulated there.

One day, as I poured the mountain of coins onto the big table, I hear an unsually high-pitched noise. Sifting through the coins, I discovered this 1944 Quarter.

Up until 1965, US Quarters were made from silver. The fact I noticed the sound difference probably has more to do with just how attuned we are to the sound of falling money, than any huge difference in the sounds the silver and non-silver coins make.

And finally, a peak at this weeks Weekly Worksheet. To read more about it (and see a larger version) try clicking on the image to transport to my other blog.

© 2011 BZ Training - All Rights Reserved


Beyond the Dog Dish said...

I love the first shot. Look how the fur on his neck is all swept forward. Now as for the training. WOW. I am going to use the excuse of a short nosed breed as to why I can't do this but we all know its my lack of focus in training lol

greygirl25 said...

I just polled the greyhounds, they are pretty certain that piling cookies on the nose and staying constitutes cruel and unusual punishment.

Beautiful images.

Kolchak Puggle said...

I love that top shot SO HARD. It is awesome. I have fallen woefully behind on my training worksheets. I want topickthem back uosnd get intuit! Whatever you are doing *obviously* works.

Greyhounds CAN Sit said...

Both those photos are SO good! The boys are so intent on what they're doing.

I just watched a video on Youtube of a GR balancing 34 cookies on his nose, then another of him lying on his back while his owner set up 50 I think it was. But I didn't watch all that one. Seemed a bit of an odd thing to do, lol. I'd be happy if my guys balanced one. Maybe if I had a go at training them to do it they might!

I don't drink coffee but I do like Starbucks Chai Latte:)

houndstooth said...

I am in love with that top shot! Zachary, you deserve an award! I think it was a great idea, and much more effective than a theme for the assignment.

I am also reminded that I have to keep cracking on the Scavenge Challenge! My kingdom for a fruit stand!

Gads! Connection?