Sunday, July 24, 2011

Phelan M. Ebenhack wins the Think Tank Photo Urban Disguise® 70 Pro

James "Think Tank" Diaz says congratulations to Phelan M. Ebenhack for winning the Think Tank Photo Urban Disguise® 70 Pro! Stay tuned for future Think Tank Photo giveaways and future contests.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Mercedes-Benz Swim Fashion Week

Photographing the Mercedes-Benz Swim Fashion Week on Miami Beach at the Raleigh Hotel can be an enjoyable experience if it were not for all those pesky photographers wanting the same front row, center spot I want. This particular model wearing Aqua Di Lara swimwear was particularly stunning when she strutted out wearing the bejeweled outfit at right. 

I used a Canon EOS 1D Mark IV SLR digital camera with a Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM telephoto zoom lens, set at ISO 800, shutter speed 800, with an aperture at f3.5.

A slew of photographers showed up for the annual South Beach event. At top center are Lynne Sladky, Gary Rothstein and Shane Fowler. 

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Blast off!

Key Largo is a great place to chill with the family after working a big story such as the space shuttle launch. Back to back 20-hour days can be a challenge. Now that I've recovered from all the mosquito bites at the Cape I can post some images and share a few back-stories.

During my college years in 1981, Canon's Professional Market Representative Chuck Luzier and I covered the first shuttle launch as stringers for the Associated Press. At this launch he provided great assistance to many of the photographers working the event. One guy walked into the Canon trailer asking for camera batteries. Another busted his lens and Chuck provided a loaner. He offered me a workspace, a bite to eat and great advice. 

It was good to see so many photographers that I've known since my collegiate years. Joe Skipper, Dave "Mullet" Martin, Pierre DuCharme, John Raoux, Chris O'Meara. My early mentor, Phil Sandlin was there but I missed him.

This image seen below was shot from one of my remote camera's using a homemade sound trigger assembled by retired Miami Herald staffer Battle Vaughan and built for the early launches. It worked great. I mounted a Canon EOS 1-D Mark III on a Gitzo tripod and ball head with a Canon EF 24-105mm f/4 L IS USM. I turned off the auto focus and image stabilizer. 

I pre-focused on the top of the platform then taped it all down. The staging time to set up was at 6 AM Thursday morning. More than 24 hours before the launch but the batteries lasted fine.

On the day of the launch I shot from the press center and set up a couple of more remotes using Multimax-Pocketwizard wireless transmitters. 

Loved being there. Wish it did not all end.

Live Long and Prosper!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Brian Blanco wins the Think Tank Photo Credential HolderFellow University of Florida Gator Rayiaz Khan sets up remote cameras for the Space Shuttle Atlantis STS-135 at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral at July 7, 2011. Khan just completed an internship at the Gainesville Sun. That is where I interned back in 1981 when the shuttle program began. Atlantis is making one final supply run to the International Space Station before retiring. As many as 1 million spectators are expected to jam the Cape Canaveral area for the historic send-off. 
Thom Baur prepares his remotes cameras before going out to the launch site. Bauer wins the Tank Photo Passport Holder

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Blogosphere Launch

The last launch of NASA's Space Shuttle Atlantis, set for Friday, July 8 at 11:26 am, on a 
12-day mission to the International Space Station, marks the end of the 30-year Space Shuttle Program.

This is a perfect opportunity for me to launch into the blogosphere with my own tales of history as captured by my vision. With 28-years experience as a staff photographer for The Miami Herald I'm looking forward to covering my second and last launch. I'll be playing in the swamp with gators as I set up multiple remote cameras.

In celebration, I'll be giving away a free Think Tank Photo Urban Disguise® 70 Pro valued at $189.00! All you have to do is comment on my blog to enter. A random winner will be selected on July 22. Free shipping within the US mainland. All others must pay the postage through my PayPal account. 

If you are covering the launch, the first person that approaches me and says Think Tank Photo will receive a free gift Think Tank Photo Passport Holder. The second will receive a free gift Think Tank Photo Credential Holder.

Keep shooting for the stars and may the best shots be yours!

Al Diaz