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Tampere
Finland

(+358) 50 344 8489

One year with Sony Alpha cameras and ZEISS E-mount lenses. Developing my own photographic eye in a in a scratch book manner. Hunting the stream of inspiration and sharing it through a popular blog platform.
This is what 'Days of Zeiss' is all about.

Journal

 

 

Happy birthday Aura!

Toni Ahvenainen

Sony A7 & ZEISS Batis 1.8/85 – f/1.8, 1/500sec, ISO100, raw Photograph by Toni Ahvenainen

Sony A7 & ZEISS Batis 1.8/85 – f/1.8, 1/500sec, ISO100, raw
Photograph by Toni Ahvenainen


I've been extremely busy in couple of previous weeks and my 'photography-time' has been pretty scant. Now that we are approaching summer in Finland, I have my hopes set high that this will also give me more time for photography (and that great Finnish summer light). Last Saturday we had a joint birthday party for our daughters Aura and Meri. Aura turned 4 years and Meri 1 year. To celebrate this important event we rented an old 19th century house and invited relatives & friends. I personally had a vision of a birthday party where there would be loads and loads of air balloons flowing in the ceiling, and I tried to sort it out by trying to find an air balloon factory (yeah, I love how odd it sounds). Turned out that helium filled air balloons cost a lot more than I thought and it was a no-go for us. Luckily and with a help of a friend I managed to get over 200 regular air balloons there before the h-hour, which made a nice first impression for the guests – and no, we didn't blow them by mouth instead my friend had a little air compressor which we used to fill them up. Overall the birthday party went well and I'm happy that girls seemed to be happy with it as well.

On the flipside I have to say that events like this introduce a little pressure to me as a photographer. We have had this tradition in our family that I have made every year a little portrait of Aura when she have turned a year. This sort of 'formal portrait' is of course a bit challenging task, especially if one wants to do it at the same day as the birthday party (which we haven't always done). If you have tried something similar I'm sure you already know the difficulties: fitting environment, good light, pose, expression, mood – and getting everything together with a small child is a bit of a miracle.  At former years I have tried to solve part of this challenge by doing it at the golden hour at a local park nearby. When Aura was two years old it was pretty easy to get her smile by doing something funny behind the camera. Now that she is growing older it gets more difficult as she is more aware of her own reactions. This time I convinced her to photograph by promising her that she would appreciate the picture later on when she would be older (which is true) and that she could see the result right away from the camera (which was probably more convincing argument at the time). Anyway, I'm pretty happy with a result, especially when considering that 'formal portraits' are not really my strongest point. Now I just have to figure out how to take something similar with Meri...

Ps. One thing that the Batis 1.8/85 continues to reveal to me is the great contrast it delivers no matter what aperture. When I was working with the SEL50F18 I could get similar contrast around f/4, and the Batis delivers that quite easily at the maximum aperture of f/1.8. This is definitely one of those points which separates professional grade gear from the consumer ones and even makes post processing so much more delightful (though the SEL50F18 is a great lens by itself).