Formula Drift Round 7, Title Fight, House of Drift, Irwindale, CA, October 13, 2012

Formula Drift Round 7, Title Fight, House of Drift, Irwindale, California, October 13, 2012. Here are just a few shots (unedited).

Formula Drift, Round 7, Title Fight, House of Drift, Irwindale, CA, October 13, 2012

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Status Update

For those of you who are actually visiting here and asking what’s happening, here is a brief synopsis.

As for “How did you make this website?” and “What are you using?” type questions, I simply used
Wordpress, one of the many free templates available at This particular template is
called the Sliding Door template. I customized the photos and words on the sliding door at the top,
and generally simply used the template and added “my stuff.”

Some have asked when will I post next. My apologies, I have some great ideas for new posts, but
I have been busier than [insert your favorite phrase about life being nuts here]. This week it’s all
about Gamestorm in Vancouver, WA and my youngest son’s drift event Sunday. Next week I promise
to post something, if not sooner.

As far as social media go, although I have also been woefully infrequent in my updates, we are
@pfmKen on Twitter, and Facebook/photofinishmedia. I also plan to get some more tweets and photos
next week, if not sooner.

On top of all that, and the usual craziness, I need to do some research and install some kind of spam

Thanks to all the fans. Later. Ken

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Customizing Sliding Door header

Some of you have asked about customizing
the sliding door header of this WordPress theme.
Select a picture you want to insert. Using
software (I use Photoshop), size it to 320
x 200, 72dpi. Add your title. Upload it, choosing
to “Set as feature image.” That should do it.

The link below gives all sorts of useful information
about this template.
Wayne’s WordPress blog

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Unlock your potential with Focus Lock

You probably already know all about Focus Lock on your DSLR. However, perhaps you haven’t considered
using it to your advantage. Or perhaps you use manual focus as a rule, and haven’t considered what Focus Lock
might be able to do for your photos. Before we explore the potential advantages of using Focus Lock in AF mode,
let’s review the feature.
When using auto focus, your digital camera will attempt to focus on your subject, which won’t always give you the desired results. Sometimes the camera will think whatever is centered in the viewfinder is the subject. If you have made some custom focus selections, it may focus instead on one of the focus indicators in your viewfinder, rather than the center one or an average. Focus Lock lets you override that feature in a manner of speaking, or fool your camera instead of letting the camera fool you.
Center the shot on the most important element of the picture, the one you want crystal clear. Depress the shutter button half way. Holding the button halfway down, move your camera to compose the shot the way you want it, then complete the button depression.
The shot on the left, below, was taken in AF mode, not making use of Focus Lock. The camera chose to put the background in focus. For the shot on the right I centered the shot on the bird feeder, pressed the shutter button halfway (getting the focus indicators to blink while positioned on the bird feeder) to lock the focus, then composed the shot and completed my pressing of the button. The subject is sharp now, and the background is fuzzy.

Bird feeder

Bird feeder on deck

Bird feeder

Bird feeder #2

Yet another way to make use of Focus Lock is when you shoot through glass. Make sure your subject is in focus, not the window/glass/reflection, using Focus Lock, then shoot. Or turn it around if you have an interesting reflection in the glass (usually NOT the photographer!), and either press the shutter quickly (bypassing focus lock) or get the reflection in focus first.
Go shoot, experiment, capitalize on one of the benefits of DSLR by shooting the same shot lots of different ways without needing to reload!


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Barrels of Fun

In the middle of the season, having discovered the joy of editing video, I thought it might be fun to put together a less serious look at drifting. The drivers are all better than they appear here – I just put together of few of their “outtakes” or “bloopers” for a laugh. Then I had no choice but to add a “fun” audio track, as well . . .


Barrels of Fun
Ken Coomes
on Vimeo.


Another little “lesson” I learned, though. The original video had the title screen shot, white text on a black background, as the “thumbnail.” Alas, on a black background, that doesn’t show up well. And, if sized very small at all, the video controls hide the title, and it just looks like a “hole” in your page. So I made use of the custom thumbnail selection options Vimeo offers to remedy that situation.

Posted in Videography | 182 Comments

Timing is Everything

I saw this squirrel “robbing” bird seed from our back yard neighbor’s bird feeder.
The first time I saw him on top of the feeder I ran to get my camera, whipped off the lens cap, turned it on, set the white balance, and stepped outside (luckily, I do believe in having an SD card and charged battery in the camera at all times, and I clean the lens after I use it.)

Squirrel on bird feeder.

Dining upside down at its finest.


After dinner, he opted to search for a show.

Still, the best I could do was get a shot of him upside down on the feeder, and then in another, non-feeder position after he scampered off the thing. Leaving the camera ready, on and set, I waited a short while, and he came back. I managed to catch him on top of the feeder this time.


Then another version of “timing is everything” caught up with me. The neighbor placed an umbrella shaped guard on top of the feeder within two days, so the squirrel would not be sneaking any more snacks. Good thing I shot when I did . . .

Squirrel on bird feeder

Here is the birdseed thief casing the joint

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