Before I dive into how I shot today’s photo of the twin bridges (that ran on 11A) I want to be clear that I am not encouraging anyone to take photos next to moving vehicles. It’s not very safe, period.
OK, first today’s photo.
Vehicles drive the twin bridges over the Yakima River on Interstate 82 during wet and snowy weather that fell on the upper Yakima Valley the morning of Nov. 21, 2011. TJ Mullinax/Yakima Herald-Republic
This photo was actually a bit of an accident because my camera and I went through a ‘truck wash’ of sorts shortly before I took this photo.
My day began looking for wet weather traffic photos for Tuesday’s paper. Unfortunately the weather had cleared up and the sky was rather dreary.
Because the sky was a flat gray, I headed out to the twin bridges in the Selah gap to shoot cars passing under the steel girders.
After shooting a few frames of cars under the bridge I saw a truck approach and decided to shoot it before moving on. Here’s the sequence.
Truck almost in frame.
Truck in frame, but not all that strong.
The truck is really too close now. This is where rubber meets the road and a lot of wet stuff hits my lens. I quickly turned away after getting peppered with muck.
I was crouched behind the guard rail protecting myself from the passing truck, but not from the slush, mud and water spray that hit me full force, soaking the camera lens and half of my face.
Wet and cold I decided to move on with the assignment and return to the warm confines of my vehicle.
But as I walked away, preparing to clean my lens I remembered an old art class trick that I learned at Washington State University. My professor called it the “Vaseline lens trick” that made a modern lens look like an old, poorly made lens from a bygone era.
I looked at my lens that was covered in muddy, mucky water with bits of sand, dirt and whatever… then I took my thumb and tried wiping off what I could.
I lifted my camera and took a couple of frames of cars passing under the bridge and ended up getting a decent art house style photo of wet, mucky traffic weather.
If you want to learn more about the Vaseline trick there’s plenty of talk about it online — or just take a look at this post by Lifehacker.