Archive for February 23rd, 2012

Weather in Forest Park

Ben Rahming gazes at Forest Park from a bridge in St. Louis, Missouri on Wednesday, February 22, 2012.

This assignment was difficult for me simply because I wanted to convey weather without photographing extreme weather, such as rain or snow. I had taken other photos throughout the week, but didn’t feel like any of them encapsulated weather, so I went to Delmar Loop to take pictures. I had a little luck finding some photos, but one of my favorites was this picture of my friend standing on a bridge in Forest Park. My main critique is that there isn’t enough contrast in the photo, and that’s something I’ll continually be working on. Had I played with my settings a little more I would have made the subject and the surrounding boy of water “pop” a little more. Secondly, the photograph is a heavy on the left side. The heaviness is a result of me wanting to focus in on the rope, which I like because it draws one’s eyes to the subject.

Robin Marks Start of Spring!

A robin, a bird that indicates the first sign of spring, stands still and contemplates its next move at Tower Grove Park on Feb. 22, 2012, in Saint Louis, Mo. (SLU Photo/ Niharika Goparaju).

Weather photos are ones you can feel. Photos that bring about the same feeling that the weather would if you were in that moment and time. This photo is a bit of a stretch for a weather photo, but I loved how “symbolic” it was of spring. When robins come out on the lawns, it means that spring is near! There are many things I like about this photo. I like the attentiveness of the robin, I love how the dull green grass shows the time of year – mid February and mainly, I like the fact that I was able to manually focus this picture so that the background and foreground are out of focus – leading to attention on the robin itself! The leaves in the bottom corner of the picture add texture and a realistic crunchy feel to the picture. Although, I do like this picture – there are many things I can improve to make this picture better! The main thing though being that the composition is very bland and straight on. I am not using the concept of rule of thirds and could have thought a bit more creatively to create a unique viewpoint. Unfortunately, the closer I got and the slower I was, the robin would move to a new location. Also, if I would have zoomed in a bit more – I would have gotten the details of the bird, the feathers, its eye and its feet and that would have added much depth to the picture, but then again maybe would have detracted from the whole theme of “weather!” Either way this assignment was a bit on the challenging side with the erratic Saint Louis weather patterns, but as always very insightful experience!


This assignment was definitely a challenge in finding weather that could be captured through the viewfinder. It didn’t really rain, nor snow, but was just nice out.  But I kept thinking, people’s response to the weather. So, I parked myself on the quad a few times and just started looking. Thankfully, when the weather is nice people take advantage of it. I really didn’t have to wait too long.

This photo came about because instead of walking to my car, I walked to the quad.  I saw these guys playing ball and just started snapping.

This photo isn’t a spectacular sports photo, though, I think its good.  I really hope this captures what the assignment was about.  The guys wearing shorts and of course playing football outside in February.  I like the photo because I did get the moment the two guys in front seem to be most anxious for the ball.  In looking at ways to improve, I do believe it is a tad under-exposed. The football and the trees are a little dark.  Or maybe that’s my computer screen.  If this were a sports assignment, I would have wanted to use a larger lens and get the two main players only. However, for a weather photo, I think it works to be pulled back just a bit.

I think this assignment really stretched me to want to grab contact info. I was shooting and realizing, people have names, so I had to make sure that I was getting the names of everyone I shot. That’s a little awkward at first, but everyone I asked for their name was really nice and responded with, “Sure, no problem.”  So, while it felt awkward to do, it was really easy to get everyone to talk about why they were out and what they were doing. Would not have thought that in a PJ class, I’d be learning people skills, but in a way I have.


Ohhhh the weather outside is…. not so frightful

Caption 3- View from Coronado Place apartment in Saint Louis, Mo on Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012 of Saint Louis University Campus. SLU students are walking to class all bundled up because of the cold front that arrived. (SLU Photo/Nicole Kent)

Well…I will agree with everyone on the fact that this assignment as indeed hard due to the fact that the weather was dull. No snow, lightning, or hurricanes! I decided to take on the task by doing an out of the box thinking strategy because of the lack of weather everyone kind of had the “SOL” expression. I took it as a challenge by trying to find as many different examples in different times of day as possible, just to show the weather is not stopping people from doing certain things. Instead of the typical on campus pictures, I decided to even work my way to Forest Park and Central West End, if you ever go to Forest Park at night…good luck finding ANYONE….was not a good idea in the end. However, Central West End was filled with lots of cold people walking around so that definitely helped the process a little bit. Anyway, all together it was a hard assignment but that was due to the fact that the weather was stationary for a week.

Awkward Weather

A group of people sitting in the Coffee Cartel coffee shop on Feb. 21, 2012 in the Central West End in St. Louis, Mo. (SLU Photo/Marco Mejia)

So this may or may not be the toughest assignment of the semester.  It was such a rough time of the year which made it tough to find good pictures of people coping with the weather.  It was usually sunny out, but still cold enough where not too many people were outside.  It still wasn’t ugly enough to where people were doing anything crazy to cope with the weather.  Even though it is a totally necessary assignment, it came at the worst possible time of the year, and I’m sure I’m not the only one that feels that way.  I wish we could’ve had this assignment later in the semester when there could have been a better contrast in weather.  But oo well, I did what I could and it’s not my best work, but it will do.

Weather was rather weary last weekend

So, this assign could have quite possibly be the most frustrating thing I have had to do in my young photographing career, and by young I mean about four-weeks-old. I must have shot a good amount of photos over a span of three days and I could not find a group of photos that were up to par. I finally ended up settling with a couple of photos I took around campus, if only we were some place where people enjoyed being outside… like maybe California. But it is what it is and I chose to try and focus on a couple of weathery type of photos like people holding coffee mugs, colorful jackets, beanies, groups of people together and people who just looked simply cold.

In this photo I really liked the fact that he wore all three colors that would generally be associated with autumn or fall. It went well with the brick background and the dead red bushes behind him.


STL Weather…What Can You Do About It?

Ashley Horsford quickly makes a snowball for a fun snowball fight with her friends while heavy snowfall covers the outside of the Bush Student Center at Saint Louis University on the evening of Monday Feb. 13th, 2012. (SLU Photo/Genise Sherrill)

As a Saint Louis native, when we were assigned this weather assignment I was half excited and half nervous. In the matter of days it could be snowing then 60 degrees here, so I wasn’t sure if the weather would be my friend for this assignment. I got a bright idea to go shoot during the snow storm last Monday to see if I could get pictures where I could actually see the snow fall. They turned out great. I really like this one because it shows the joy and excitement in Ashley’s face. It seems like snow can turn anyone into a little kid. As she is making the snowball the smile on her face is priceless. I was actually surprised that students were playing outside, because so many people were dressed for nicer weather. For this photo I wish I would have positioned my angle a little bit better. Maybe get lower to be “on her level” to show the lower younger view. Also, I wish I could have gotten the rest of her friends into the picture by moving the shot to the left some to show the tension among the friends during the fight. A cool photo would have been capturing someone actually throwing a snow ball or being hit by one. All in all I really did like shooting in the snow, next time I’ll remember to wear a jacket..


Weather that never seems to stay the same

Ok so I will admit this assignment was a tough one for me from the beginning. I thought in my mind about weather and I thought of snow falling, a thunder storm, or a gloomy day. I did not know how I was going to find such elements or capture the ultimate weather picture. So i began my “photo hunt” by just simply driving around and parking places searching for that shot. I took this one here while sitting in my car, I was only playing around with my camera and decided to take a picture of the man coming up on my rear left. I then told him that I was not a paparazzi and that I was a student at SLU simply taking pictures for my Photojournalism class. I felt like a paparazzi the whole time I was doing this assignment. This one was probably the hardest for me because I had no real color or weather-like conditions to work with. I took tons of photos but none of them were speaking to me at first. I have to say also that it is scary asking people if you can take their pictures because they don’t always love the idea so much and may think that you are some weird magazine person or something worse. I do think that I could have done a lot better on this assignment than what I came up with in the end because I should have taken pictures at night with the different lighting and everything. But it was enjoyable yet frustrating at the same exact time. But I thought this shot was interesting because i caught it right when he was coming into my mirror. Its a different look than simply taking a picture of a biker biking right next to me. It was fun to explore the outdoor places in St. Louis that I could.


It’s nice to see that everyone else had similar frustrations with the fact that this week was unseasonably mild. I took some photos over the weekend but none really stuck out as great to me. I took off work Wednesday during the day and made my way to Forest Park, my favorite place to go when the weather is favorable.


Ashley, 20 months, and Alexandria, 2, watch as Prarie Dogs chase each other at the St. Louis Zoo on Wednesday, Feb. 22. Ashley and Alexandria spent the warm winter day at the zoo with their mothers and grandmothers. (SLU Photo/Kati Cundari)

What I found was just more frustration. No one was really doing anything. But I did what we were told a thousand times: sit and have the camera ready, then shoot and capture. I got some nice dog walking photos, but my favorite of the week came during my stroll through the zoo. I love photos of children. When they are too young to realize what cameras are, they are the easiest to photograph in their natural state. I shot some great photos of some children at the zoo. I found myself gaining confidence in approaching people to ask if I could use their photo for my project as the day went on. I like this photo because the girls are enjoying the zoo and are doing so without having to be bundled head to toe because of the cold. 

Overall, I’d say this shoot was the toughest we’ve had, but with that challenge, I think we made excellent photos because we were forced to get creative with how we wanted to show our theme. 



I appreciated the leniency of the assignment, but because of its broadness, it was difficult to find inspiration. I checked out the camera on Monday, hoping to get a jump on the assignment, but had to wait until Wednesday before I stumbled upon a “weather” moment.


I was rolling into my apartment complex, when I spotted this triad chilling outside enjoying this moment of brief sunshine. When I asked them if I could snap a few photos of them, the cheerfully agreed.

I’m a big fan of the shadows in this photograph and I think they play a large part in creating the frame. The sun creates a little spotlight effect on the gentleman on the right. If I could go back in time, I would have turned down the iso a little to help highlight him a little more and tone down the pair in the shadows. The one thing I do not like about his position is that he is looking out of the frame.

Overall, I think this assignment forced me to change my perspective on weather. Before, I looked at it merely as an unchangeable byproduct of mother nature. Now, I have a begun to take notice of the ways random people around me cope with it in their own peculiar ways.


February 2012
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