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The Missing Person

Looking through years & years of family photos I can't help but notice a common element: There's somebody missing. (That would be me.) I love to take pictures of things we do, places we go, and I like to include friends & family members in pictures whenever I can. As I look back through our snapshots & albums, I realize they mean so much more when friends & family members are included. The problem is that I'm the one who usually takes the pictures, so I'm rarely in them ... a missing piece of the puzzle in our family's pictorial history books. Family history - that's what family picture albums are really all about, and they really do need to include everyone.

Solution: The Nikon D2H's "Invisible Photographer"

The Nikon D2H's built-in Intervalometer provides automatic unattended photography. The camera can automatically take pictures at an interval of your choice between 1 second and 24 hours, cranking out as many pictures as your specify, up to 999 frames (or the capacity of your memory card, whichever comes first).

Although I originally thought of the Intervalometer as just a gadget for occasional stealth wildlife photography, I now also use it for everyday candid family pictures. (That way I get to be in the pictures too.) And because it repeatedly shoots sequential frames, the intervalometer gives me the post shooting advantage of being able to pick & choose after the fact instead of having to constantly carry the camera around looking for (and often missing) a photo opportunity.

The D2H on a tripod has become my "invisible photographer".

Family fishing fun
Family fishing fun
Click to enlarge: 1024 x 678 pixels, 325 KB
With the camera up on a tripod on the far side of the pond, I zoomed the 70-200 lens to a field of view that would cover our activity, aimed the center focus point at some shoreline reeds, set the Intervalometer for one shot every minute with a 120 picture maximum (good for two hours), and went fishing with the family. This time I got all three of us in the picture.

Father / Daughter Fence Project
Father / Daughter Fence Project
Click to enlarge: 1024 x 683 pixels, 377 KB
My daughter & I had to put up 400 feet of double-sided electric fence to keep the goats in the adjacent pastures from butting heads with each other. If we didn't keep them from head-butting, they'd tear up the fence and hurt each other in the process. The low-current wire run at head-butting height should do the trick once the goats learn the discomfort of the harmless (but certainly uncomfortable) shock.

Again, I set the D2H on a tripod, but this time I set the interval at two minutes, aimed at a central point in our 400 foot work path, and set the camera's aperture at f/16 to give a deep depth of focus so that no matter where we were working, we'd look reasonably sharp.

And unlike earlier family projects, I'm in the picture.