Weekend at the Lake

A few weeks ago we all went up to visit Katie, John and Ryan at their cottage.  The weather was great and we spent most of the time down sitting by the lake.

Obviously Ryan was the center of attention and he did his best to entertain us.


And Outside
Thumbs up

No shirt, no problem

A couple of years ago we were up there and i took some pictures of Max jumping off the dock.
dog dock jump

And i also used my homemade ND Filter  to take some pictures of the lake.
floating in the lake

I tried the ND filter again this year.  It's been a while since i've use the ND filter and i forgot to set the camera to RAW.  This same thing happened when Karrie and i were in Tennessee.  I took a bunch of pictures of a waterfall and forgot to set the camera to RAW.  The problem is that with my green tinted homemade filter it needs to be in RAW mode if i have any chance of correcting the color.  RAW lets me adjust the white balance and tint from the start.  I have some presets that i saved where the green tint is completely removed.  But if i forget, like i did this time, the pictures are somewhat useless unless i convert them to black and white. 

Luckily i realized that i screwed up on Sunday morning and had time to change the camera settings and retake the pictures.  They weren't as good as the sunset on Saturday night but a few turned out alright.  Here's a couple of them.
peaceful lake weekend

I thought that most of them looked better as black and white, with the calm lake water.
black and white dock, lake, cottage

nd filter lake water calm

boat on calm water

Another thing that i've wanted to try for years was to helmet mount the GoPro Hero camera that Karrie bought me for my birthday a few years ago.  When i originally got the GoPro i made some homemade mounts and handles for it.

This is the simple handle i've used for 95% of my recording
easy gopro handle

It's how i recorded our underwater ocean walk down in Mexico.
gopro ocean, underwater

For doing kite aerial photography (KAP) with the GoPro i needed it as light as possible so that the kite could get off the ground, or ice in that case.
gopro KAP

So i used one of those custom aluminum mounts and attached them to a foam bike helmet i bought at Salvation Army.  The first mount was nice and solid.  I screwed the aluminum mount directly to the helmet with 6 screws.  I forgot to take a picture of the setup, but it looked something like this, except instead of a strap, i just screwed the mount right into the foam.
gopro bike helmet setup

This would be for a forward facing view, kind of a first person perspective.  Another mount that i wanted to try was to have the camera about 12" in front of my face looking backwards.  This gives a sense of scale and shows the expression of the person.  Again i forgot to take a picture of it, but here's the basic idea. 
gopro 1st person view

The camera is out in front of your face looking back.  Because the GoPro has such a wide angle of view it can record at that close of a distance.
gopro field of view, viewing angle

Like i said i don't have any pictures of my actual camera setup with the bike helmet.  It's still a work in progress.  When i get it worked out i'll have to post some pictures of it.

My idea was to have my sister pull me water skiing while wearing the helmet and this second camera setup.  Karrie said it probably wasn't a good idea.  She was right, had i fallen while wearing it, the wood bar and metal mount would have probably smashed into my face.  So instead i mounted the helmet on top facing forward, like the 1st setup. 
how to water ski, slalom

Here's the video that i recorded.  I used the 3rd setting on the GoPro Hero which is 720p at 60fps.

GoPro - Water Skiing


The video turned out great.  The GoPro works really well on sunny days where there is lots of light.
gopro water ski, slalom ski, boat

The only big problem i noticed is that i forgot to wipe off any water droplets.  There were a couple that were on the lens the entire time.  I'm still working on the second camera mount setup, trying to get the balance right.  Maybe i'll go bike riding with it on.  Something were i'm less likely to have it smash into my face if i fall.

But we all had a good time and the 2 days flew by.

Pretty soon Ryan will be the one skiing behind the boat.

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