Monday, June 22, 2009

Ward Campout at Blackhawk

This past weekend our ward held its first family campout at Blackhawk Campground on the Nebo Loop. After a week of rain in Utah, we had a warm day Friday and being in the cool mountains was very pleasant. I love spending time in the mountains and my senses were awakened driving up: the vivid greens from all the rain and the colorful wildflowers fresh in bloom; the smell of pines and a campfire. I was really excited to spend time in the outdoors with my ward family. I really love the Parkway 5th Ward. Our family has good friends here, and I am grateful that my children can spend their childhood with people I trust and love.

Last Thursday I attended a short class at the library about using digital cameras. The instructor taught us the five elements of a good shot and recommended that we practice them individually before combining them. After we feel comfortable with the rules, then we should break them. The first principle I am mastering is the rule of thirds, which says if your shot is broken into a 3x3 grid, the ratio of your subject to negative space (or vice versa) is 2:1. So basically, the subject should not be centered. I found that I'm a lot better at cropping for this rule than following it in the original shot. You can look for that on some of the photos below. I think it does add interest. There is one picture where I played with lighting instead and I really like the dark shadows of the late-night game table (though Kent wants me to add fill light so he can see their faces).

Anyway, the campout was great. The kids had a blast. Our bishop asked us to use the weekend to evaluate our 72-hr kits, and I've learned that I need to add air mattresses and ear plugs. I don't know why I always forget that tents are not soundproof. With dozens of tents laid out together, we heard babies crying and dads snoring all through the night. After packing up camp, we took a quick detour to the Payson Lakes Recreation Area (top picture, which, by the way, I don't know why it looks blurry; click on it to see how beautiful it really is) where we found some of our neighbors. They let the girls borrow fishing poles and we spent half an hour watching the fish jump just beyond the lines. I just relaxed with a book and enjoyed the cool morning. Once we were home Saturday afternoon, the wind ushered in pouring rain, which provided the perfect excuse for all of us to nap. Camping is exhausting!


Debra said...

It was a really good time, wasn't it? I learned a lot. We haven't done much camping with the kids so what used to work when we didn't have kids doesn't work the same now that we do. Your photos look great! If you feel up to it tell us what else you learned.

mindy said...

I like the lantern photo. Way to go!

Digital Photography School (just google it) has jillions of articles & tutorials. More than you could ever read. Okay, maybe not, but a lot of great stuff. :o)

Rory and Andi said...

We camped in Nephi that same night and went on the Nebo Loop that evening. We were actually 10 miles away from Blackhawk and thought about dropping by because we missed the ward, but we turned around because it was getting dark. I'm glad you had fun!