Cold Spring Harbor Drone Video by Joseph Ryder

Here is the finished video I put together from my flight over Cold Spring Harbor earlier this week. All of the video was taken on my DJI Mavic Pro and edited using Adobe Premiere and After Effects. One thing I learned from this test flight was that I need to upgrade the SD card inside the drone. If you look at the video its not so unapparent that the SD card had an issue with the bitrate the drone was shooting at.

But being this was mostly just a test flight that I used as an excuse to take the drone out for the day and capture some stills, I decided to edit the clips together anyway. One of the fun parts of dealing with drone footage is there isn't any internal audio. All of the audio in the video was added in post.

Breaking out the Drone over Cold Spring Harbor by Joseph Ryder

With the weather warming up a bit today after non-stop rain yesterday I decided to bring my drone out to Cold Spring Harbor to try to capture some unique images. The biggest strength of using a drone as a photographer is being able to create images that five years ago were simply impossible.

One of my favorite techniques is looking straight down with a bird's eye view. It's amazing how different a landscape looks when viewed from above instead of horizontally as we're accustomed to. Below are three of the images I created today in the harbor. I captured some 4k video also and am currently in the process of editing that. Once that's finished I'm going to be creating another post that will also go into my workflow for editing drone footage and images. 

Slow Motion Baseball with the GH5 by Joseph Ryder

While photographing last night's Mets game verse the Nationals I decided to grab a couple slow motion shots with the GH5 and see what I could come up with in Premiere. I also took images with the camera's burst mode and 6k photo mode to compare the results. The images were also taken with a relativly high ISO for a mirrorless camera, bouncing between 2000 and 3200.

Working with the GH5 was a blast at the game. I found myself switching back and forth between burst mode, 6k photo mode and video mode with variable frame rate enabled. One of the few things that bothered me with the camera was the lag in 6k photo mode. Normally I expect for an image to be taken when I click the shutter button. In burst mode this is the case, but when switched to 6k photo mode there is a noticeable lag from clicking the shutter to when the camera actually begins the recording from which you can draw the images from.

Another slight con comes when switching from video mode and photo mode and vice versa. The ISO settings in the camera do not adjust. For example, while shooting stills I had the ISO set to 2500 so that I could boost my shutter speed. For glass, I used a Nikon 300 f4 with a metabones speed booster. With this setup I was able to shoot around 1/2000s. When I went to video the shutter automatically switched to 180 degrees but the ISO stayed stuck at 2500, blowing out the image. I had to manually switch the camera to ISO 800, giving me a much better exposure. I would have liked to see the camera be able to remember your ISO settings between photo and video mode and adjust itself.

Sunset at Robert Moses by Joseph Ryder

Being that it's smowing out and sub-zero I wanted to warm myself up and take a look back at a few shots I took at Robert Moses state park in mid-November.

Sunset at Robert Moses  Joseph Ryder

Sunset at Robert Moses Joseph Ryder

For this shot I handheld a five shot bracket on my Nikon D750 while in continuous high mode. I was shooting at 35mm, f3.2, and ISO 100. My base shutter speed was 1/800 and the bracket shot 2 images overexposed and 2 underexposed a full stop apart. In lightroom I merged the raw images together as an HDR image.

Shooting this landscape this way I was able to retain lots of details in the sky and preserve shadow detail in the beach grass.

A Seagull in flight  Joseph Ryder

A Seagull in flight Joseph Ryder

This next image was shot on my crop body Nikon D7100. I usually like to keep a crop body with me to compliment my full frame body. By doing this I gain an extra 50% reach on my longest lens.

In terms of this image that lens was a 300mm f4. On the D7100 I got a full frame equivalent 450mm reach.

Why Persistence is Necessary by Joseph Ryder

Me at Citifield.jpg

This baseball season I had the opportunity of a lifetime. I was given the chance to meet one of sports best photographers and photograph the New York Mets.

This was an opportunity that I forged for myself. Often times you're your advocate and have the ability to open doors for yourself with a little persistence. In late winter, after photographing the Stony Brook University Football and Basketball team, I wanted to try to take my photography to the next level and learn from the best.

I'm a lifelong Mets fan and with the season approaching I started searching for a way into a few games. I found this article on and set out to try to contact the Mets' team photographer Marc Levine.

After some digging I found an email address and sent him an email, then I waited. And waited. And waited.

A week passed with no response. I decided to email him again. A week later, still no response. At this point I was pretty bummed out but decided to press forward. I dug some more and found a phone number for Marc. 

I was hesitant at first to call; what would he think getting a random phone call from a student photographer whose emails he may have been ignoring?

After some internal debate I decided to say screw it, the worse that could happen was him saying he couldn't help me. I dialed the number and Marc answered. After introducing myself and explaining who I was Marc was very nice and confessed to me that he didn't check the email account that I was sending messages to.

After a ten minute phone call he invited me to photograph games during the season and to critique my images afterwards.

All I could think after that phone call was "wow, did that really just happen!?"

The season came and I got credentialed to shoot a bunch of games and had an amazing time. Marc is an amazing photographer and person. He didn't need to help me but he did.

But I never would have gotten to that point if I hadn't pursued it. After the first non-response to an email I could have given up but I didn't. The lesson I took from this was that if you want something, you have the opportunity to open your own doors. Don't be afraid of reaching out to someone multiple times or calling them.

If you want to do something get out there and do it.