Gurujam 2013

Gurujam 2013

A couple of weeks ago, I shot images for a local BMX Flatland Bike Competition called Gurujam 2013.  It was one of the first competitions in the Columbus area and my first participation in an event like this. I used to shoot photos for the Ohio State University daily newspaper (The Lantern) back when I was in Journalism school and during my last quarter there I spent a lot of time covering winter athletic competitions.  Of course back then I was shooting with a Minolta SRT 201 and a really small flash.  Nothing like what I have to work with today. 

I’d never been to a Flatland competition. Most people think about the half-pipe and X games type events.  The skill required for this competition seems to me to be even tougher than that.  I hope I’m not offending anyone, but these people took a bike from standing still and balanced it on its front wheel, then passed the bike frame around behind them.  They had the bikes spinning in a pirouette at amazing speeds.  Still photographs don’t do those tricks justice. However, I think I managed to capture some of the best things they did.

Another fact from the competition was that the youngest competitor was 10 while the oldest was 43.  The 10 year old did some really cool things as well (I certainly would never have thought to do those things with my bike when I was 10).  

I had visited the site where the competition was going to take place a couple of weeks before the event just to get a feel for the place and to see where I should set up my lights.  I was going for a two light setup and wanted to find a spot with the best sight lines and light.  I wanted to capture the motion and skill of the riders and get some really good rim lighting.

I also rented a Nikon D4 (oh, how I love that camera).  And shot most of the images with my 105mm f/2.8 lens.  It’s normally a macro lens, but I was shooting at f/16 and the lens is pretty dang sharp.  

It was a long day, the competition started at noon and didn’t wrap up until about 10:00pm.  But in the end, I got some amazing images and got to participate in an historic event for Columbus.  I do hope that they hold it again next year.  I’ll be back for more images.

Meanwhile, you can check out more images on my smugmug page at

Also, if you are interested in learning more about the event, check out

For information on Quest BMX bike, go to

For information on Reklamation Bikes, go to


Little Christmas Tree

Little Christmas Tree

It’s a beautiful, sunny day here in Ohio.  We have clear blue skies and cool temps (only about 42 degrees Farenheit today).

I’m still thinking about the Project 365 photo project that I started last January.  There’s nothing wrong with adding a few more images to the blog this year.  I am making plans for next year and I hope to scale back to a photo a week instead of trying for a photo every day.   Today’s photo is of one of the little Christmas ornaments that we put up each year.  My wife likes to go all out with Christmas decorations.  We put up 6 Christmas trees in our house.  Only 2 of them are really big, the others are smaller and some don’t have any decorations on them ( or come predecorated). My wife and son believe that you can’t have too many lights on a tree (and that you should be able to read a book by the lights on the tree. My daughter and I are more minimalist in our lighting expectations.  Less is more, so to speak.  We also put up various decorations in the rooms of our house.  This image came from one of the little tree decorations that we have.  I thought that it was a nice symbol of the season we are entering.  I shot this one with my 50mm f/1.8 lens.  It’s a really nice lens for short depth of field and tight focus.  Happy Holidays to all.

Scioto Mile

Columbus, Ohio

View of Downtown Columbus, Ohio from the Scioto Mile

Today’s image comes from the Scioto Mile, a new park area in downtown Columbus, Ohio. I’ve taken a photo of this scene a few years ago, but didn’t like how it turned out, so I went back today to try to get a better shot. I think this one came out best. The color version is really good, but I love black and white images and I love how this one turned out. There is a lot of construction going on in downtown Columbus. The third of three bridges across the Scioto River is nearly complete and the view when complete will be very pretty. The central park area of the Scioto Mile is also really well done. There’s a band shell and green space to listen to outdoor concerts, a water play area for children with some really cool metal sculptures, and the Milestone 229 Restaurant. I didn’t go in, but there were lots of people there getting brunch. Note to self: must try brunch there sometime!