Your DSLR can take outstanding photos on its own in auto mode, so why would you want to switch to manual? This video tutorial will explain the reasons why as a photographer you might want full manual...
I saw a movie once where it turned out that by photographing covered bridges, you
could end up in bed with an Italian immigrant. So I have set out every year with
high hopes but I can tell you that I never got so much as a smile from any
foreigners up in New Hampshire or Vermont. The author of the book is a business
school professor and all the women I know are just wild about guys with MBAs. So
I figure the guy must be some kind of expert on romance and yet he seems to have
been wrong in this regard.
So in case you just want a bridge photo for its own sake, here's my advice...
The photo at right is what you'd see in a postcard. What could be more typically
New Hampshire? The freshly painted covered bridge. The mountain in the
background. No parked Honda Accords. Yes, this scene is so typical that you'll
find it on practically every postcard in the White Mountains. Also so typically
that you'll find nothing like it in New Hampshire except in a state park. Yes,
this image was made in Franconia Notch, right next to the Flume. The only vehicle
that ever drives over this bridge is a tourist shuttle. The interior of this bridge in
Woodstock is a little more like what I'd want a covered bridge picture to be.
Canon 20-35L lens set at around 20. Fuji Sensia film.
About the longest covered bridge anywhere connects New Hampshire and Vermont
in Windsor, NH (about 15 miles south of Hanover). These first four pictures were
taken half an hour after sunset. The exposure for the first one was 30
seconds at f/2.8. I scrambled up a railroad embankment and then walked out over
the water on what seemed like a rather loosely held together railroad bridge.
Canon EOS-5 and 70-200/2.8 lens. Fuji Sensia. Aperture Priority autoexposure.
Note how vibrant the colors in the above images are. However, if I want to
include some sky in the image then anything on the ground is going to be rendered
practically black. In these pictures, I exposed to retain some color in the sky.
I didn't have a graduated neutral density filter with me on the bridge, but I
guess if I really wanted to play with PhotoShop, I could glue together a sky from
one exposure and a foreground from another.
I came back one morning to find the bridge partly shrouded in fog. I'm not
quite sure that these results justify getting up at 6 am. Actually I'm not quite
sure that any results would justify getting up at 6 am...
These are my favorite covered bridge shots ever. The were taken after dark
with exposures like 30 seconds at f/2.8. Canon 70-200/2.8L lens and Fuji