Justin Serpico [MountainVisions]

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BIOGRAPHY
I started shooting photography as a passion in college after a lifelong interest in the medium. Self taught and still learning, I initially thought of photography as a creative outlet for those without traditional artistic talent. However, I learned in short time that capturing meaningful and emotion evoking images is far more than mastering the technical aspects of photography. In the end, photography done right is only a technical pursuit during the short time the exposure is set and shutter is pressed. In reality, photography is no more a technical pursuit than painting, or sculpting. All require tools, but all require a vision to create a compelling final product.

While I've evolved from a snap shooter documenting my adventures, capturing he world of my adventures through the lens of my camera is still fun and exciting over a decade later. Most of my photography is done on in the backcountry far from cars and roads. While this doesn't necessarily make the image any more or less compelling to the viewer, I feel I am able to create compelling images because I look at the scenes I photograph as a participant rather than a voyeur.

While I believe a photograph should be an extension of reality with as few manipulations as possible, the photographer must have a vision to transform what is a spectacular 3D world before them into a spectacular 2D photograph that evokes the same emotion to the viewer that the photographer originally felt.

I'm not a fan of manipulation but I don't see an issue with using traditional wet darkroom techniques in the dry lightroom. I also don't see an issue with using digital capture to it's fullest advantages by shooting RAW, using digital GND filtration, and dispensing with optical filters when they can be replaced. For the most part the only filter in my digital bag is a polarizer, which often doubles as a neutral density filter. In my film bag I still carry GND filtration as well, as warming filters.

I shoot sports, travel, and adventure photography, as well as some photojournalism which is where I actually got my start in the mid 1990s.

Although I've turned into a photographer, I think of myself far less as a photographer, and more as an adventurer carrying a camera. Wilderness and the backcountry are a place for me to recharge my battery. While I truly admire those shooting larger format film on the roadside or (with more admiration) deep in the backcountry, because of the participatory nature of my photography, I primarily shoot 35mm film and digital format.

35mm film and digital has for decades been the ultimate compromise in quality to portability. The system can handle fast action, delicate landscapes, and everything in between without being an albatross to the photographer. I shoot this small format like people shoot larger formats. I always tripod mount, I always use mirror lockup and a cable release, and gauge my depth of field with care to use the optimal aperture to reduce diffraction on this smaller format. While this format will never rival the ability to print exceptionally large detailed images that larger formats can handle, it's versatility for photographers with a wide range of subject matter, and in need of portability is unparalleled.

In the end, photography and my adventures share a symbiosis that fuel one another, and the goal is still to bring home a few compelling images from each one!



For more of my adventures you can visit my blog at Mountain Visions: The Wilderness Through My Eyes

or

for captioned photos only my Flickr page: Mountain Visions



GALLERIES

Tri-City Valley Cats Baseball @ The Joe

Single Photos

K10D

Pentax ist D

21mm DA Limited

Pentax K20D

DA* 200mm

DA 55-300

DA* 300mm

FP

Pentax 645N (medium format)

Pentax K-7

Samsung EX1 / TL500

Pentax K-5

Pentax K-01

PHOTOS

Turning two at the Joe. The Valley Cats Ceasar Quintero attempts to brake up a double play.

Double Play. Jon Florentino (SS) and Buchanan (2B) turn two at the Joe on July 4th.

DH Max Sapp doubles to the gap vs. the Vermont Lake Monsters.

Photo Is But A Vision, Much Have You To Learn Young Photographer...

Junker on the edge of the Adirondack wilderness.

Wort Boiling Kettles At West End Brewery (Matt Brewery). Utica, NY. Pentax K10D, Sigma 20mm 1.8, hand held 1/60th second at f/5.6 ISO 100.

Jamie Johnson of the AHL Albany River Rats skates down ice on a breakaway. Pentax K10D at ISO 1600 with Pentax DA* 50-135 SDM lens at f/2.8.

Grand Central Station NYC, NY. Sigma 10-20mm at 10mm. Tripod mounted on an ultrapod. This was a 3 exposure image (8, 15, 30 secons) using mirror lockup and a cable release, that I bracketed and selectively unmasked the areas of each image that I wanted to reveal detail in. Sort of a color dodge and burn. This is similar in concept to HDR, however, unlike HDR, I finished with an image that has high contrast. The image looks similar to the original underexposed version but with more detail in the shadows.

Chrysler Building from street level (literally). Sigma 10-20mm at 10mm. ISO160 @ f/8. Manual, RAW.

Dog agility trials have dogs running at speeds faster than NFL football players and making turns far quicker. This is a great test of your cameras AF system and your it's ability to handle action. Pentax K10D, Tokina 80-200 2.8 @ f/4 and 170mm. ISO200 @ 1/800th

Copperhead at National Zoo.

Iguana. National Zoo, Washington, DC. Pentax K10D with 50-135mm DA*. 1/80th, f/2.8 @ ISO 500 with SR activated.

World War II Memorial

Washington Monument and US Capitol from Lincoln Memorial. Pentax K10D, Arax 35mm T&S at hyperfocal. Exp. 3 seconds, f/16, ISO 200. The sky and foreground were balanced separately using 2 different RAW WB and blended in post processing. However, since not all the monuments were lit with the same lighting, there was still a compromise on the WB.

Panorama of Joe Bruno Stadium. Troy, NY. Pentax K10D, Tokina 28-70 ATX-Pro. ISO 1600. 4 images stitched at 28mm.

HVVFF Association Conference and Parade.

Tri-City Valleycats 3B, Craig Corrado, snagging a line drive for an out. Pentax K10D, Tokina 80-200 ATX-Pro f/3.2, ISO 800.

Left fielder Brown steals second on the Vermont Lake Monsters.

Jeff Icenogle Freezes the action enroute to a Valleycats win. Pentax K10D, Tokina 80-200 ATX-Pro f/2.8 w/ Sigma 1.4x, ISO 1000.

Tri-City's, Colt Adams, throwing heat at the Joe vs. the Brooklyn Cyclones.

Panorama of the St. Regis Canoe Area and surrounding mountains in the Adirondack Forest Preserve. Paul Smiths, NY. Pentax K10D, Arax 35mm T&S. I took this by shifting left right and center 3 times for a less distorted panorama that gains a sweeping landscape. It's effectively a 40MP image and the resulting file was nearly perfectly aligned.

New York State capitol building with moon overhead. Pentax K10D, Pentax FA 35mm 2.0 @ f/16. This was a 25 second exposure using tripod, mirror lockup (two second self timer) and cable release. ISO 100. Only modification was cropping and basic RAW conversion.

Bridge over 787 overpass on Broadway leading to Hudson River front. Downtown Albany, NY.

West End Brewery, Utica, NY. Pentax K10D, Sigma 20mm 1.8 at f/11, ISO 100. Dodged and burned.

Manhattan Skyline via #7 train. Queens, NY. Pentax K10D, Sigma 10-20mm at 14mm, f/8, hyperfocal distance. SR on (moving train), and ISO 400.

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Shea Stadium, Queens, NY. Pentax K10D, Sigma 10-20mm EX @ 20mm, f/5.6, 1/100th, ISO 125. Manual, RAW.

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Panda National Zoo. Pentax K10D, Sigma 70-300 4-5.6 DG @ 300mm f/7.1. ISO 400, 1/160th sec. Aperture Priority, RAW. SR ON.

Grand Central Terminal. Pentax K10D, Sigma 20mm 1.8 EX @ f5.6. 1/4th sec @ ISO1000. Hand held SR ON. Manual exp, DNG, converted using silkypix and PS CS.

New York State Education Building. This building is believed to be the most columnized building in the world outside of Greece. Albany, NY.

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Albany Mayor Jerry Jennings receiving the votes for the 2007 Tulip Queen. Washington Park, Albany, NY. Pentax K10D, ISO 160, Sigma 70-300 at 250mm, f/5.6 and 1/160th. Handheld, SR on.

SR or not...exif imprinted on photo. Left photo is with Pentax K10D SR on, right photo with it off. This is a 1:2 macro at 300mm (450mm equiv FOV).

Old Montreal from the Old Port. Pentax K10D, ISO 100, Arax 35mm T&S shifted 8mm, f/16 and hypefocal focusing.

Just For Laughs Festival. Montreal, QC. Pentax K10D, FA 35mm f/2.8, ISO 100. Image was cross processed digitally but otherwise unaltered.

Old Port of Montreal. Pentax K10D, ISO 100, Arax 35mm T&S shifted 8mm, f/16 and hypefocal focusing.

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Albany River Rats vs. Manchester Monarchs at the Times Union Center. This game was played in unusually warm October weather and created the dreaded fog, along with melting ice. Pentax K10D, ISO 1600, Pentax DA* 50-135mm at f/2.8 and 100mm.

Albany River Rats of the AHL at the Times Union Center, Albany, NY. Pentax K10D, ISO 1250, Pentax DA* 50-135mm at ~70mm f/2.8.

Albany River Rats Keith Aucoin looking to pass around a defender. Pentax K10D, ISO 1250, Pentax DA* 50-135mm at 70mm f/2.8.

Sunset on summit of St Regis Mountain. Pentax K10D, Sigma 10-20mm at 14mm. Hyperfocal f/11, ISO 200. Bogen tripod and cable release with MLU.

Joseph L. Bruno Stadium, Troy, NY. Tri-City Valleycats post game fireworks. Pentax K10D, 30 second exposure at ISO100 and f/16. Tripod mounted with cable release and MLU (2 second mirror prefire).

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5 image panorama. Pentax K10D, FA28-70 @ 31mm (46.5), hyperfocal, ISO400, f/11 @ 1/30th, manual exposure RAW. Tripod mounted with MLU. Taken on summit of Rooster Comb at sunrise.

Pentax K10D, FA28-70 @ 28mm, ISO200, f/8 @ 1/125th, Aperture Priority (+1EV to compensate for fog and snow). Hand held. Taken on summit of Blue Mountain just after sunrise.

Pentax K10D, FA28-70 @ 28mm (42mm), ISO320, f/13 @ 1/50th, Aperture Priority (+1EV compensate for snow/fog). Hand held with SR. Taken on summit of Blue Mountain just after sunrise.

Pentax K10D, FA28-70 @ 37mm (55mm), ISO250, f/8 @ 1/200th, manual exposure RAW. Tripod mounted, 10 second self timer. Taken on summit of Cascade Mountain just after sunrise.

Pentax K10D, FA28-70 @ 70mm, ISO250, f/5.6 @ 1/100th, manual exposure, RAW. Hand held. Taken on summit of Cascade Mountain just after sunrise.

Pentax K10D, FA28-70 @ 70mm, ISO250, f/11 @ 1/320th, manual exposure. Hand held. Taken on summit of Cascade Mountain just after sunrise.

4 image vertical oriented panorama. Pentax K10D, Pentax FA 28-70 @ f/16. 1/80th sec @ ISO250, using tripod. Converted from RAW and stitched using Panorama Factory.

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Sunset Over Lake George

Painting With Light. Moonrise over the NYS Forest Preserve

Hiking Into The Setting Sun, Adirondacks, NY

Dave At Blueberry Cobbles

6 image panorama of Bald Mountain and Rocky Peak Ridge

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Pentax K20D, DA 35mm Limited, Ultrapod. I put the camera and lens on the 4 inch tripod, and got right in this little guys face. I used the live view to focus and compose this shot. approx 1:3 macro @ f/22 to retain front to back focus.

Pentax K20D, Sigma 10-20mm DA at 14mm f/8.

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Pentax K20D. Pentax DA 55-300mm at 150mm. SR on.

Pentax K20D in 21fps burst mode. Pentax DA 55-300mm at 300mm. SR on.

Pentax K20D in 21fps burst mode. Pentax DA 55-300mm at 300mm. SR on.

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Pentax K20D, DA 21mm @ F/16. The weather sealing and rugged build of the K20D was appreciated in the 100% humidity while shooting literally in the clouds.

Pentax K20D, DA 21mm, DR expansion on to retain highlights. RAW, ISO 200.

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Pentax K20D, DA 21mm. 2 shot panorama. The weather sealing of the K20D and rugged build of the 21mm DA allowed me to shoot in both the 100% humidity of the clouds with condensation on all my gear, as well as in the rain on many occasions.

Pentax K20D, DA 35mm Limited, Ultrapod. ISO 250, MLU, f/16.

Pentax K20D, ISO 160, RAW, DA 35mm, Culman 2100 tripod. Bulb (~40sec), f/16.

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IMGP3272

IMGP3169

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In camera HDR Pentax K-7

Photomatix HDR Pentax K-7

K-7 ISO 3200

K-7 Saratoga Battlefield

Coney Island

Rain Delay

Rain Out

K-7 ISO 3200

Lower Plotter Kill Falls

Upper Plotter Kill Falls

Brooklyn Bridge Park

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Ascending Whiteface Slide #1. Pentax K-5, FA 43mm Limited.

Descending South Dix Mountain. Pentax K-5, DA 21mm.

Wilderness engineering. Pentax K-5, DA 21mm, ISO 800.

Ascending old Whiteface Slide #3. Pentax K-5, DA 21mm Limited.

Ascending Whiteface Slide #3. Pentax K-5, DA 21mm Limited.

Ascending Whiteface Slide #3. Pentax K-5, DA 21mm Limited.

Ascending Whiteface Slide #3. Pentax K-5, DA 21mm.

Preparing for the crux below Whiteface Slide #3 headwall. Pentax K-5, DA 21mm Limited.

Kaleidoscope. Adirondack Balloon Festival. Pentax K-5, FA 43mm Limted.

Flames. Adirondack Balloon Festival. Pentax K-5, FA 43mm Limited.

Fire Rescue. Pentax K-5, DA* 50-135mm.

Dix Mountain from the Beckhorn. Pentax K-5, DA 21mm.

Clouds over the Dix Mountain Wilderness. Pentax K-5, DA 21mm Limited.

Spectre of the Broken over Dix Mountain. Pentax K-5, DA 21mm.

Survey Bolt, Adirondack Survey c. 1870's. Pentax K-5, DA 21mm.

Afterglow over the Dix Mountain Wilderness. Pentax K-5, DA 21mm Limted. Handheld @ ISO 400.

Slide climbing in the Adirondacks

Slide climbing in the Adirondacks

Lupine

Tending the fire on Lizard Pond, Adirondacks, NY

Camp on Lizard Pond, Adirondacks, NY

Buggin' out on Mount Blue, Adirondacks, NY

Colvin on Haystack, Adirondacks, NY