Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Dem bones

"As they learn how jaw bones work, six-year-old Arron Ray of Owings Mills pulls against teacher Stephanie Tommasello as (from left) Gabriella Lee, 5, watches Andrew Ray, 6, and Derrick Singfield, 9, try to help him pull him away during the "Dem Bones" program at the Irvine Nature Center, Saturday. Children examined skulls, bones, owl pellets, and other animal artifacts."

Woah. What happen? What day is it? What time is it?

I'm sorry - my eyes have been glued to my desktop computer whenever I have a free minute as I've been watching the live feed of the POYi judging. Been seeing some awesome photos and also some snoozers.

Nonetheless, it's great to hear the words of the judges (other than "out") as they determine some of the best pictures of the past year from around the globe.

Might find myself still glued and doing the same the next couple days, too.

Anyways, when photographing kids it's either hit or miss. What I mean is that they either stare down the barrel of your lens the entire assignment or they ignore you the entire time.

I always hope for the latter. I mean, I pray for the latter.

When I walked into the Irvine Nature Center, I was expecting 30 screaming children who all wanted to have their picture taken as they learned about bones, examined skulls, bones, owl pellets, and other animal artifacts during the Dem Bones program.

But my luck changed and what I thought what might be a large group was downgraded to mere five children and an instructor.

From the start the kids didn't even acknowledge that I was even in the room, and they were fairly well behaved, too. This made my life so much easier.

They started by asking questions and then moved onto handling some skulls and smaller bones. My editor wanted some shots that actually showed the kids examining the bones rather than them sitting around staring blankly at them.

The room was pretty small and the light was nice with big windows. Since these kids acted like I wasn't there, I didn't have any trouble getting close and catching some nice, cute moments as they pressed their little faces against tiny magnifying glasses and inspected "dem bones."

My favorite frame was when I caught a kid doing something I probably would have done when I was that age.

Near the end of the session, I saw him inspecting this one fossil very closely.

First, he turned it over a couple times as he looked at it and then ran his fingers across it to get a sense of texture. Then he shook it next to his hear to see if it was hollow and made any noise.

By this point I am thinking in my head, "What is he going to do next?" I was literally on the next page before him.

As you probably guessed (if you didn't already see the frame) he then proceeded to sniff it, so I moved in a bit closer for the next moment to unfold.

I knew exactly what he was going for as he snuck a little taste the fossil with no one,
except me, looking. I totally thought he would try and chew on it next, but he didn't.

I thought it was endearing and funny, although the picture may not scream that to a reader immediately.

In the end, I forgot to move that photo, although I don't think it would have ran anyways.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

so funny- that last picture was the one of the kid sniffing... even licking the fossil... thats Andrew i think... what a fun kid! i could TOTALLY see him doing that too! i really wished i could have seen that moment myself.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009 5:30:00 PM  

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