September, 2011 Archives

Sometimes I have to remind myself that it is OK to take a non-work related photograph. Sunset pictures are as common as candy, but it was the graphic look of the silhouetted power poles stacked up against the orange sky that made me pull over. Thankfully this morning, I had put my 20-year-old Nikon 300 mm f/4 lens in my trunk for another assignment. Its telephoto effect worked perfectly on this highway scene leading into Medical Lake, Washington. Sometimes a pretty picture is just that. Looking at this image just makes me feel good. Nikon D3s with a Nikkor 300mm f/4 lens ~  Colin Mulvany/The Spokesman-Review

Silhouetted power poles lead the way into Medical Lake, Wash., Sept. 19, 2011. Photo by Colin Mulvany

I credit Spokesman-Review reporter Kevin Graman for seeing this photo and pointing it out to me. We were roaming the animal barns looking for a story on the opening day of the Spokane Interstate Fair  when Kevin said, “Look at the chicken on that kid’s shoulder.” I was all  over it in seconds. I love how the rooster is taking a nap and how the out of focus background colors match the rooster’s feathers. I shot this with my Nikkor 85mm lens almost wide open. It gave me the soft background look of a long telephoto without having to lug a big lens around.  Nikon D700 Nikkor 85 mm f/1.4 lens at f/ 1.6

On the opening day of the 60th Annual Spokane Interstate Fair Friday, Sept. 9, 2011, Madison Locke, 17, of Deer Park, Wash., takes a walk with her rooster Jeffery on her shoulder. The fair, open daily from 10 a.m. to 10:30 p.m., runs through Sunday, Sept. 18 Colin Mulvany/The Spokesman-Review.

This is one of those photo assignments that stress me out long after it’s over. Reporter John Stucke had done his shoe-leather work in securing the interview with the two friends and the brother who witnessed the murder of Jennifer Sitliff, 20, by a mutual friend of theirs last Saturday night. We all met up at the victim’s grandmother’s house. I  tried to be a fly on the wall during the interview. As the subjects recounted the shooting and its aftermath, they all showed their grief in different ways. It’s hard to trip the shutter at a moment like this, but it is one that I felt was honest and revealing. At home that night, I didn’t feel good about the emotional photo that would appear in the morning newspaper.  Instead, I just felt haunted by their tragic story.

From left, Matthew Setliff, Nikki McConnell and Daja Varnell mourn the loss of Jennifer Setliff, who was shot and killed Saturday in an apparent murder-suicide.