Categories / General

Fall color 2013

An elegy for November

Autumn-time, thy scenes and shades
Are pleasing to the tasteful eye;
Though winter, when the thought pervades,
Creates an ague-shivering sigh.

–John Clare (from The Village Minstrel, 1821)


The majority of the time when I go out for a shoot, I prefer to go solo. It makes it easier to get the photos that I need when I don’t have any extra bodies and voices to try and work around (getting the perfect photo and then realizing your coworker is in the shot is not the greatest feeling in the world). However, there are times when it’s really great to have another person around.

When I went to take a portrait of Bill at Bumping Lake he was originally pretty straight faced. Most people are when you first put a big camera up in their face. Since I had a reporter along with me, she was able to chat with him while I waited for him to shake off the uncomfortableness of being in front of the camera and show some genuine emotion.

Sometimes all it takes is a little bit of patience and a properly positioned coworker.

— Kaitlyn

Wapato Stuffed Pepper Soup from Rill Foods. (GORDON KING/Yakima Herald-Republic)

Keeping it simple

Simple is good. Sometimes very good.


With an assignment to photograph a pot of soup for a food feature, I could have busted out the strobes, reflectors and associated lighting gear and made a major production of it.


But I wanted to create a warm, simple,  “homey” sort of photo. A photo which matches the way homemade soup makes you feel. Not an over-lit shot that demonstrates my lighting skills.


Window light provided the perfect lighting solution for the photo. And this time of year the early-afternoon light is soft and warm, exactly the sort of light I wanted for the photo.


As luck would have it, I’ve got a large window with the right exposure at my home.  Our dining room table is already by the window so all I needed was a tablecloth and a bowl for the bread (and the willpower to not eat the soup and the bread).


Simple. No muss, no fuss.


The basic scene:


By the time I had arranged the bowls the angle of the sun had changed a bit so I had to move the table a couple of feet before making the final image. That’s the only adjustment I had to make.

The final photo:

Wapato Stuffed Pepper Soup from Rill Foods. (GORDON KING/Yakima Herald-Republic)


The whole shoot took less than 45 minutes and in our world of daily deadlines saving time is always good.


So, simple can be very good.


–Gordon King


Not everyone was excited

I showed up at last Tuesday’s Economic Outlook Conference at Central Washington University anxious to crank out web updates, photos and videos throughout the day, generating interest and excitement at the annual gathering. This was my first shot: a student sleeping on one of the couches outside the meeting.

Evidently, he was bored before the show even started.

Fortunately, the day was not that bad. Economics can be dry but a decent speech by Gov. Jay Inslee and some agricultural trend presentations kept me interested.

–Ross Courtney