Dead Animals for a Special Event

I had occasion to visit the Vashon Sportsmen’s Club recently to tour the facilities.  This is a possible site for a very special event happening next summer.  From what we saw, it is a great, if a bit dusty, place for just such an event.  Of course, I had my camera and snapped pictures of the most prominent features.

To say that there were a lot of taxidermied trophies on the walls would be an understatement.  This place is a museum of wildlife specimens, staring at you from all directions.  I can’t help but wonder if the members ever have a little too much to drink and talk to them.  Sometimes we just want someone who’ll listen.

This turned out to be an exercise in hand-holding captures in low light.  I left my tripod at home because I wasn’t expecting such a plethora of  interesting subjects (I won’t even mention what I saw preserved in a jar in a glass case).  You may notice the shallow depth-of-field in the above images.  The lens I had with me opens up to f/2.8, and that’s where I kept it the entire time.  To further increase my shutter speed, I had my ISO set fairly high.  Well, high for me.  Although the D700 is supposed to have great (low noise) results at very high ISO, I still have a mental block that doesn’t allow me to take pictures higher than about 800.

Another interesting fact about the above images is that they were processed in the brand new Adobe Lightroom 4 which just came out as a beta release January 10th.  I’m not planning on doing any kind of full-blown LR4 analysis because you can find that all over the Internet, but I will say that the new version is very intriguing.  WHOA!  I can’t believe I just spelled “intriguing” correctly on the first try.

Anyway, the points are these:  I was able to get some acceptable shots while shooting as slow as 1/16th of a second (a personal best), Lightroom 4 is available in beta and can be downloaded here, and I may have a semi-formal event inside an animal mausoleum (a word a did not just spell correctly on the first try).

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