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2.12 - "Needs Work" 

Fire Dance

(( Comments of how I could improve this shot greatly appreciated! ))

An unplanned opportunity arose as I was shooting night shots of the Austin, Texas skyline. I noticed some noise in a nearby tree and this guy was rigging up his GoPro to record himself. I asked if I could help. And after we got it all set up, if it was okay if I shot some stills while he performed his dance with fire-lit poi-balls soaked in kerosene.

I only had one 'performance' and only about 2 minutes to try various shutter-lengths and compositions to try to get the shot with the just-right amount of motion but still balancing the scene. 1.5 seconds in this case.

As soon as he finished his dance he quickly packed his gear and his GoPro and ran off saying something about how the authorities don't look kindly on this sort of fire-performance.

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4 Comments

Steven de Vet's picture

Great shot if you ask me given the short time you had in the moment for an unplanned shot.
Detail in the fire looks great, the skyline looks good.

Only thing I would say is the crop. Personally I would have gone a little tighter. The right side, doesn't need that tree there and the stones or metal in the bottom right. And I would have cropped past the tree in the top.

Eric Wilson's picture

Thanks Steve - that's very useful feedback and I appreciate the fresh perspective.

Rémi Chaillaud's picture

This looks really cool, but cleaning up the image through compositing would have made it much better in my opinion. Not sure how far you could go by painting some of your other shots in to remove some of the unappealing/distorted elements, but keeping only the fire trails and maybe a sharp silhouette if you got one would make this amazing!

Eric Wilson's picture

Thanks for the comment and suggestion. (Personally I'm quite opposed to compositing in a "photography" gallery - as for me that's digital art and others are far better at it, so I pretty much never do it. But it's an interesting idea.)