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 Tuesday, November 12, 2013
Iguazú Falls by Fábio Pereira Bernardino
by Fábio Pereira Bernardino
"After a full day of activities, a friend insisted that we take a night tour of the Iguazú National Park – a tour that only happens during full moon nights.
Arriving at the falls, everybody was looking for the best place to take their photos. Two or three people had tripods, but I had decided not to bring mine. I only had my Canon 50D and EF-S 10-22mm lens. The floor of the viewing platform was slippery; everyone was having a hard time trying to position themselves because of all the people wanting the best view possible. For a tripod, the platform did not inspire much confidence in stability, either, because it wobbled with the every viewer’s movements.
As I only had the camera it was simply a matter of being the closest to the handrail, resting the camera over it and trying to steady it throughout some long exposures at high ISOs. Trial and error allowed me to find the exposure I was looking for.
To get the picture, I had to battle the slippery conditions, the crowd of people, an unsteady platform and the lack of ambient light. In the end, I was happy with the picture I got!"
Canon EOS 50D
Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM
10mm, f/4.5, ISO 1600, 4 sec
Thanks Fábio for sending in your Most Challenging Shot story! If you'd like to share your Most Challenging Shot, email us at with "My Most Challenging Shot" as the subject.
We would also like to congratulate Fábio for recently taking 1st place in the nature category of the Ambiente Imagens Dispersas 2013 Photography Competition!
Category: Photo Stories
Post Date: 11/12/2013 6:29:04 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Thursday, November 7, 2013
Tesla Coil by Mathieu Lindquist
by Mathieu Lindquist
"To date this has been my most challenging shot. It is a photograph of a real Tesla coil in action for Nimbus Theatre, a company located in Minneapolis.
For each show they have a photo call where the actors run through the show and the director selects scenes for which they need photos for publicity and archival purposes as well as for the actors' portfolios. This photo came from a show called 'Tesla,' a company produced work about the life of Nikola Tesla. This was a shot that everyone really wanted to get and presented a few major technical challenges.
The theatre group had high expectations for the show's imagery. This was a real Tesla coil and produced lightning, lots of noise, and would even power the T-12 fluorescent lamps the actor was holding. During the show the coil is used twice to amazing effect; the cast and crew really wanted to capture its brilliance in a photograph.
The first major hurdle was that Tesla coils can damage nearby electronic devices (like digital cameras). This limited how close I could reasonably get to the stage.
Another problem was theatre lighting - which is usually dim and color gelled for special effects. For this scene, the theatre lighting was especially dim since the designer wanted the coil-generated lightning to stand out. I wanted to respect the lighting designer's color choices and had to account for that in my shooting. Although there was no audience for the photo call, we had to run through a two hour show in three hours and capture almost 90 specific shots along the way. Therefore, I only had a few minutes to capture this particular shot.
Another problem was that the theatre was very small. In order to be far enough away from the Tesla coil (to eliminate risk to my equipment) I had to position myself in the lobby and shoot through the theatre's double doors. This severely limited my point of view choices.
And to make matters worse, we could only fire the coil once or it would overheat during the performance, so no pressure there!
In the end, I set my Canon 7D and 24-105L on a tripod in the lobby, framed the shot at 32mm to shoot down the center aisle but not catch the handrails on the risers, preset the exposure (.5s, f/5.6, ISO 1600), and practiced the shot with the actors. When we were all ready we counted down and I took the picture.
I was happy with the result and we got what we wanted on the first and only take possible. I then adjusted levels and such in Lightroom. To date this has been my most challenging shot, combining significant danger to my equipment, a dark scene, actors, time constraints and meeting high expectations. The director was very pleased with the result as was I."
Thank you Mathieu for sharing your Most Challenging Shot with us! If you'd like to share your Most Challenging Shot, email us at with "My Most Challenging Shot" as the subject.
Category: Photo Stories
Post Date: 11/7/2013 9:58:53 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Wednesday, November 6, 2013 Logo
We've all gotten shots we're proud of – that's why we're driven to click the shutter. But what's the most challenging shot you've ever captured?
What's the story behind your most challenging image? What was the end result?
Send us your story and the image you captured (640px on the long edge) to with "My Most Challenging Shot" as the subject.
We're going to share the best stories and their pictures on our news feed over the next few days. We look forward to seeing your submissions!
Category: Photo Stories
Post Date: 11/6/2013 11:19:37 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
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