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February 10, 2010 / Steve

Day 41 – But then I remembered… we have matches!

When I was a kid, I always loved playing with fire. That has not changed. My fancy for the flame saved me on day 41. It was 10 PM before I even began thinking about what to shoot for today.

I was beginning to stress about having to take a plain ol’ boring snapshot of something…. but then I remembered, we have matches! LOTS of matches!

The mechanical setup for this shot is simple; no flash, camera on a tripod, matchbook on a table. The challenge was getting the settings on the camera right to let in enough light and yet have a fast enough shutter speed so things don’t blur too much. Most importantly though, ya gotta have a remote trigger so you can hold the button down let the camera fire off as many shots as possible during the burn. After each burn,  I’d cough the sulfur out of my lungs and hunker down behind the camera and see what I had. Many pictures had flame in just the kind of shapes you’ve seen before. This one was unique and the only one that looked more like sheer cloth than flame. Plus, there is something that resembles a face in the flame. Do you see it?

Don’t go get all religious on me now… I’ve seen lots of depictions of Jesus and his nose was never this big. Maybe it’s Karl Malden….

The technical details:
5D Mark II | 24-105mm | 1/160 sec. | f/4.0 | ISO 100
12 match books burned one at a time on a card table, using a battery as an invisible back support.

Note to self: buy matches…



Leave a Comment
  1. Mom / Feb 11 2010 3:09 PM

    Ah yes …. you’ve always had a fascination of the flame. 🙂 Love this shot. I thought it really did look like sheer cloth but sadly, didn’t see Karl or Jesus in the flame. Didn’t throw the matches in a waste basket, did you. Ha

    • Steve / Feb 11 2010 7:30 PM

      Oh yeah, that’s a very knowing smile. I figured this post would remind you a few moments when you might have thought I was a pyro… 🙂

  2. Marilyn / Feb 11 2010 5:23 PM

    Hi Steve Great picture. Just in case you want to make another trip to MI We have some beautiful snowy places in our yard. You sure would be able to find a few interesting shots here. Just had to tease you a little. MK

    • Steve / Feb 11 2010 5:29 PM

      I bet Sure wish I could re-shoot the wagon and wood chairs in your yard now!

  3. Julie Kanitz / Feb 12 2010 8:13 PM

    Perhaps I’ll take my camera to Mom and Dad’s this weekend and enjoy a walk in the yard and woods with Kendall! The flame is cool….a little worried…was Susan standing by with the water? lol… perhaps the face is Bailey looking on wondering if it’s time to play. jak

  4. lori blau / Feb 23 2010 9:44 PM

    hey steve! thoroughly enjoying your pics…you’re so talented :0) just HAD to comment on this one as it brought me back to our camping days, and the time that the park ranger made you and bryan put out our campfire since it was about to set the trees on fire!!! good times!!!

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