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08-27-2018, 02:51 PM   #1
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The shots you didn't get

We've all had them. When you saw a perfect shot, but you didn't have your camera. Or you couldn't get the photo in time.

One stands out for me. I was walking down a street in Paris when I noticed the man in front of me. He appeared to be very affluent; wearing a business suit, shiny shoes, the works.

He was also carrying three loaves of French bread. The loaves showed above his shoulders; two on one side, one on the other. The sun was out, and it created a halo around him. I was still shooting film at the time, and before I could get my camera out, he turned down a side street or into a building (I don't remember now), and the opportunity was gone.

What are yours?

08-27-2018, 04:10 PM   #2
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I'd say nearly all of them got away. In my pursuit of ever more technically capable gear, I have found myself in the situation where I really need to plan to 'do photography' - lugging a bagful of gear to somewhere, trying to select which lenses to take, shall I take a tripod or not, filters or not, a flash... When I put that amount of effort into it, a) I become reluctant, and b) murphy's law says that nothing much good will come of it. It's great if I have a subject and a location lined up, but no good for hunting interesting street shots.


So, the answer is surely more gear! I will be purchasing a Ricoh GR which will always be in my pocket. Bingo bango! Of course then I will miss the shot by not pulling it out of my pocket in time, but it's a step closer.
08-27-2018, 04:49 PM   #3
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Mine was a rainy day, I was driving and right on the side of the road was a hawk who looked more like a robin. It was pulling a night crawler worm out of the ground. I stopped, rolled the window down down and it stayed there with no fear or concern that I was sitting in my car less than 20 feet away. Iíve never seen a hawk eating a worm before and may never again
08-27-2018, 05:04 PM - 1 Like   #4
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The shot that always comes to mind when I think about lost shots was back in the early eighties when Mick Taylor (I'm a big fan) toured Australia with Fleetwood Mack (or was it just Mick Fleetwood - I can't quite recall ) I was working with the company that provided sound for the tour. As a last minute thing my boss invited me to the show to watch from side of the stage . I had my trusty Spotmatic F & SMC Tak 50/1.4 with me and thought we might be able to get some shots. Through the course of the show I took some shots but but knew I wasn't getting anything good. He was really a bit far away for the 50m lens & the timing was more determined by the lighting than anything else, anyway I fired some shots when the lighting permitted and he was on my half of the stage, then he spotted the camera and sauntered over and stuck his nose in front of the camera and hammed it up a little. Click... no click, what the... I was out of film ! ... how embarrassing, I had to pretend to take a couple of shots and give him a nod of appreciation and he moved off back to center stage. We had a good laugh about it, but It still irks me to this day, close to 40 years later.


Last edited by Cee Cee; 08-27-2018 at 05:25 PM.
08-27-2018, 05:36 PM   #5
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I have many missed shots due to not having a camera with me.

The most recent one was around a month ago. I had to go back to the store because I had forgotten a few things. I went in the evening and as I drove west, I saw the moon was a scything moon and as it was dropping down towards the horizon, the closer it got, the more orange red it got. It would have been a cool picture.

Another time was a few years back when my oldest son was going to SDSM. I was on my way to get him for Thanksgiving and was driving west on I80. I looked over to my left and I saw an old homestead on top of a hill with wheat all around it. Off to one side was a tree with no leaves on it. The impact was the way the light was shining and that the sky was full of dark storm clouds in the background. Another stunning photo (if I could have pulled it off) missed.
08-27-2018, 06:38 PM   #6
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My Dad, for as long as I can remember, claimed a shot of a Willy Wagtail (a small black and white bird) perched on the head of a kangaroo. When the slides came back from Kodak, this one was not there. He reckoned, without any evidence, that someone stole his prize winning photo. We all agreed, while secretly believing he simply fouled up somehow.
08-27-2018, 07:15 PM - 1 Like   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bruce Clark Quote
My Dad, for as long as I can remember, claimed a shot of a Willy Wagtail (a small black and white bird) perched on the head of a kangaroo. When the slides came back from Kodak, this one was not there. He reckoned, without any evidence, that someone stole his prize winning photo. We all agreed, while secretly believing he simply fouled up somehow.
Hey Bruce, I'd believe your Dad, did you check the neg's ?. A film I had developed at my normal lab didn't seem to have a print of a shot I'd taken of a budgerigar which I was looking forward to seeing as I thought It should be pretty good. Alas all the budgie shots were all just average, when I looked at the negs there was one which wasn't printed, I returned to the lab and while I was waiting I noticed a pretty darn good shot of a budgie on display at the cash register, yep, my missing shot, The lab guy couldn't explain why it was there and not in with my prints.
08-27-2018, 07:50 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Cee Cee Quote
Hey Bruce, I'd believe your Dad, did you check the neg's ?
It was slides, no negs, so if the slide was missing, the picture was missing.

08-27-2018, 08:15 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by leekil Quote
It was slides, no negs, so if the slide was missing, the picture was missing.
it might be similar to all those bird shots of mine which consist of nothing but empty branches , cheers
08-27-2018, 09:05 PM   #10
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A few years back I made a short ski tour with my uncle to a peak we already had been before and I didn't think to bringing my camera again.
Just that day the whole tour was under or in the clouds and about 10m to 15m in altitude under the peak we crossed through the clouds and stood on an island in a sea of clouds (the most perfect closed blanked of clouds as far as we could see in any direction - and no camera...).
08-28-2018, 02:16 AM   #11
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Great topic... so many possible answers!
As somebody already said... not having a camera was the problem!
Usually I try to carry a Minox 35 ML with me... that morning I forgot. On a motorcycle without a backpack, only jacket and wallet, no cellphone either.
Country road, summer afternoon with the sky divided between 50% Sunny and 50% dark clouds on the other side... I stumble in a huge flock of sheep.

First thought: "damn, all this shit on the ground..." Second thought: "I hope that this dogs won't bite me"... Anyway, I am able to pass the flock unharmed,
when 6-700 meters down the road I see this huge wether (aries? Anyway, a huge male sheep) in the middle of the street... alone, eating the grass on the side.

It would have been a great "street" photo... the aries looking at me, the flock far away, the wonderful sky above. He made it to freedom! Very poetic.
08-28-2018, 05:13 AM   #12
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Mine was a bald eagle sitting on a snag about 75 yards from me. it patiently sat there while I tried to fill my memory card. My girlfriend was becoming inpatient so I started taking down my tripod so we could go, figured one out of the hundreds of pictures I took would turn out great. About halfway back to the car I heard the eagle screach, I turned and thought I would get a picture of it taking off. I have to admit I got a good picture of it with its wings spread, but only got the underbelly and talons of the osprey that was dive bombing it. 1/1000 of a second from having an ospery and an eagle in the same frame.
08-28-2018, 06:42 AM   #13
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An acquaintance once told a group of us about a time when, driving down the highway, she saw one of those "speed checked by radar" signs.

Sitting on the sign was a hawk.
08-28-2018, 09:19 PM   #14
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When I was in Istanbul I was at the Blue Mosque. Anyway there were police EVERYWHERE so everyone was wondering what in the heck was going on. As I was sitting on a bench chatting with a local girl a big crowd of men in suits and ties show up.


I grabbed my camera and wasn't quite sure what to make of it as they all marched on.




Turns out it was the #2 and #3 leaders for Turkey. I was literally right there when they came by. Naturally I got out in front of them and was taking photos like mad but I was completely not prepared for it. I got within literally about 3 or 4 feet from them if not closer than that. It was like I was shooting photos in a mosh pit so the controls on my camera got all messed up and my shutter speed wasn't fast enough and my ISO was too low so I missed shots that I could have done better if I was prepared.

I got a lot of shots but then the Turkish Secret Service pretty much tackled me. More like they grabbed me from behind and snatched me completely off of my feet and moved me out of the way. They had absolutely zero intention to harm me and were completely professional, but I was right in the path that these national and world leaders were taking. After it was all over the guy that 'moved me' exchanged smiles and kind gestures. We both laughed about it.


I did get a nice motion blur picture as they picked me up off my feet The shot below was taken at 18mm on a crop sensor...so I was close. This was snapped right as they 'moved me' up and off my feet and swung me around out of the way. LOL!



The guy in the middle with the glasses is Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu. The bald guy one person over from me is the Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus.


08-30-2018, 02:13 PM   #15
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Last summer I was shooting dragonflies in the garden. After half an hour and few dozen blurry pictures i went home and left my camera on the table. Got back to te garden and had a chat with my father in law. Suddenly I saw a dragonfly striking a butterfly. It caught it and landed on a tree behind me. I saw a butterfly wing slowly falling down and the beast enjoying a lunch That would be an awesome pic... eh...
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