Another February in Florida, Part I

Today’s Post by Jamie Zartman

Well, it’s February again, time to fly again from Colorado to Florida, to visit a Navy friend who served with me in Vietnam and introduced me to photography, and also to see the annual Ferrari show on 5th avenue, and later catch some of Florida’s amazing botanicals and birdlife. This year, I was looking forward to using my new Olympus E-M1 Mark II, some Pro Olympus lenses and the Leica DG Vario-Elmar 100-400mm f/4-6.3 ASPH telephoto.  

The Naples Ferrari show has continued to grow in popularity, but with 500 cars lining both sides of 5th avenue for blocks and blocks, and an estimated 50,000 attendees, it’s a real challenge to get relatively clean photos. So it’s either a very tight crop or a momentary break in the flow of people. Thinking I would try to get there early, I decided to get an early start and photograph the full winter moonset over the gulf, while the sun rising the east was happening at the same time, and then hit the Ferrari event afterwards. As I did not want to be changing lenses on the sandy shoreline of the Gulf, I used my backup Olympus E-M5 Mark II with the ED 40-150mm f/2.8 Pro to grab a photo of the setting moon near the Naples pier, while some pelicans were searching for breakfast. Hard to photograph flying birds in very low light, but the photo at 1/400 and f/4 and ISO 200 (I should have used a higher ISO) was a moment to remember.

By the time I arrived at the Ferrari event, at 9:00 AM, the crowds were pouring in. I decided to use the Olympus 12-40mm f/2.8 on the E-M1 Mark II, to provide some flexibility where possible. I’m learning to trust the camera’s in-body stabilization and all of the photos taken on this trip were handheld. Here, the reflection of palm trees on a Ferrari’s windshield provided a reminder that I was in Florida. I used Lightroom’s blue slider to reduce some of the sky’s color cast on the windshield. The photo was 1/125, at 19mm. I love seeing the fins on older Cadillacs and this one was no exception.  Photographed at 1/2000, f2.8, and 12mm.

The photograph below of the Ferrari LaFerrari on a flatbed provided several interesting elements, including the couple watching from a balcony, a speed limit sign which provided a bit of humor considering the Ferrari’s 200 mph plus capability, and the combination of red, blue and green in the photograph. In retrospect, I should have selected the camera’s HDR mode, to try to better balance the bright sky in the photo.

In a follow-up post, I’ll take a look at how the Panasonic 100-400 and E-M1 Mark II combination did with some of Florida’s wildlife.