Haley Swinyer Photography Blog

Water Tank

For this assignment, we had to drop an object into a tank full of water and try to capture the moment the object hit the water. In order to do this we had to have a long exposure, so we could get the water reacting the object hitting it. I used this website to help me out with this assignment.

For all the images, I adjusted the levels and color balance accordingly. I also sharpened the image, which I really like how it turned out.

2The photo above is my favorite, because you can see all the water and the object. I had Kylee drop an EOS into the water while I was at eye level with the tank. I like how you can see the ripples from the water and the splash the EOS made. I just wish I cleaned the tank off more often so there were less water spots on the side of it. 1I like the photo above, but it’s not my favorite. The like the way the water is splashing, but the EOS is already so low and almost out of the picture. Although I don’t like how the left side of the photo is so dark compared to the right. I also don’t like how there’s a reflection from a computer screen on the water tank. 3This photo is a close second to my favorite. I really like how the water splashed up and you can see more ripples in the water in this one. I also like how you can see the little bubbles from the ninja turtle toy, which luckily faced the camera. Once again, I wished I cleaned the sides of the tank more often for less water spots.



All EarsAllEarsFor this photo, I did “I’m all ears”. I took a picture of her and a picture of her ear, then put multiple ears all over her face.

Piece of CakePieceOfCakeThe second one I did was “It’s a piece of cake”. We happened to have cake at the time, so it was perfect.

Thinking CapPutOnYourThinkingCapThen I did “Put on your thinking cap”. I took a picture of her in her hat for work, then clone stamped the logo off of it. Lastly, I typed thinking across the hat.

Zip Your LipsZipYourLipsNext I did “Zip your lips”. She had a zipper for special effects makeup, so she just put it across her mouth.

Chip on Your ShoulderChipOnYourShoulderThen I did “Chip on your shoulder”. So we literally put a chip on her shoulder.

Cut the MustardCutTheMustardLast I did “Cut the mustard”. We just put some mustard on the counter, then “cut” it with a knife.

Relationship Final

I chose Relationship for my theme, because I wanted to show the people I’m close with. My goal for this project was to take documentary pictures of the people I spend the most time with doing what we normally do when we’re together, to show our relationship. This website inspired me to do documentary pictures for this theme, it helped me understand what the steps are to documentary photography.


The first photo of Leila is my portrait image and she’s making an ugly face which is common for us, because it’s always her reaction to some of the stupid things I say. The aperture is at f/2.8, the shutter speed is 1/60, and the ISO is at 125. Our friendship is communicating through weird noises and ugly faces, so this photo is one of my favorites. The only thing I wish I could fix is around her left eye it’s kind of dark and I can’t brighten it anymore without overexposing the photo.

The second photo is my depth of field image. The settings are the same as the photo above, the aperture is f/2.8, shutter speed is 1/60, and ISO is at 125. Leila and I both like photography, so we usually just drive or walk around until we find a place we want to take some photos. I’m actually really happy with the way this photo turned out. I love how sharp her hair looks.

On both photos of Leila, I applied an Unsharp Mask just to bring out some details like her hair. I also used the burn tool to lighten up her hair and eyes. I also used the workbook and follow the steps to retouch her face. Lastly, I adjusted the levels and colors.


When Rachael and I hang out, our nights usually consist of staying up late, listening to loud music, and doing our art projects. We tend to get distracted from our projects, which is why she’s on her phone in the first photo. The second photo shows her actually working on her project.

In both of the photos of Rachael the aperture is f/2.8, the shutter speed is 1/60, and the ISO is at 400. Once again, I applied an Unsharp Mask and lightened her hair. In the second photo, I lightened her watercolor palette, just to bring out the colors. I also adjusted the levels and color balance.

gabi1 copygabi2.jpggabiturtle


In the first photo of Gabi, the aperture is f/4.0, the shutter speed is 1/60, and the ISO is at 400 and because it was so dark in her room I had my flash on. I also retouched her face, using the workbook. Gabi and I are always on our phones, so this was a perfect photo to show what we do in our free time.

The second photo’s aperture is f/6.3, the shutter speed is 1/200, and the ISO is at 100. Kylee and I drove to Corbin Park in Post Falls to take some photos for our final and Gabi tagged along, so I could get some photos of her too. This photo is also a perfect example of our friendship, because it has been two years full of her and I doing stupid things together. For example, in this photo she’s attempting to walk along the rocks and not fall in the lake. Although she didn’t fall in the lake, she did step right into the water, which is why she’s making that face. I’m so proud of myself for catching a photo of her reaction to almost falling in.

In both photos, I applied an Unsharp Mask and adjusted the levels and color balance. I also cropped the photos in more, so the main focus was obvious and there wasn’t wasted space around the subject.

Also Gabi looked like a turtle, so yeah.


In the first photo, the aperture is at f/4.0, the shutter speed is 1/160, and the ISO is at 100. I applied an Unsharp Mask and cropped the photo in to focus on her. While the photo is a little blurry in some parts, this is still one of my favorites. I got this photo while she was jumping onto a rock, hoping she didn’t fall in. Kylee and I do a lot of stupid things together, like jumping onto rocks in the lake or walking on frozen lakes while trying to break holes into the ice.

The second photo is my slow shutter speed image. The aperture is f/16.0, the shutter speed is 1/30, and the ISO is 400. I took this photo as she was running to jump on the rocks in the lake. I just wish the photo wasn’t as bright as it is, but I also kind of like the sunlight.

Free Choice

Once again, I drove around Hayden lake for this assignment. I love driving around the lake for nature pictures, because of all the trees. All the photos originally turned out really blue, which I tried to fix in photoshop. These photos remind me of the Leading Lines assignment we did in Photography 1.

1IMG_5396The photo above was originally really blue, I kind of like it with the pink/red undertone it has now. I really like how dark the trees are, because it creates a good contrast with the snow.2IMG_5378I love the fog towards the tops of trees, it makes the picture better in my opinion. The photo was originally really dark, which I tried to fix in photoshop. I like how green the trees are, but the snow is a little too bright in my opinion. I also sharpened the image, to get more detail in the trees.3IMG_5385This photo is my favorite out of these three. I love all the trees and the contrast between the trees and snow. I also love how the road just curves off. Although the snow is still a little too bright.


My friend and I drove around Hayden lake during sunset, because I wanted to see how the pictures would turn out during this time of day.

For all the photos, I had my aperture at f/2.8 and ISO at 400. I used this website to learn some tips for HDR photography. hdr1I really like how vibrant the colors are in the photo above. I’m happy you can actually see the green in the trees, instead of them being black like the typical sunset photos. hdr2My favorite out of the two photos above is the first one, because of the red in the sky and the trees. The second one also has some weird white/highlighted spots around the trees, which is kind of weird. hdr3I like the photo above, but i don’t like how there is a random highlighted spot in the middle of the snow.

After reading about how to retouch photos in the Photoshop World workbook, I decided to try it out. The photo below is the original, without any retouching done. IMG_48251

IMG_4825This was my first time doing this and it actually turned out pretty good in my opinion.


Mental Health Awareness PSA

For the PSA, I decided to do a topic that I can relate to. I chose mental health awareness, because it is something that has affected my family greatly.

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For the first movie poster I did, I based it off of the poster above.2I took photos of Kylee, using the studio lights. I wanted to do something simple, but with a quote that meant something. Many people struggling with mental illness who seek help are told that it’s “just a phase”, which is completely false. I also wanted to put a logo for the website I used, to make it seem more professional.

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For the second one, I based it off the photo above.


This was my first idea for the PSA. This is also something that is being told to people dealing with mental illness. People don’t understand that a mental illness is a chemical imbalance in the brain and isn’t always caused by a dramatic event. I wanted to list some common things that run through your head when struggling with anxiety and depression.

Final Peter Hurley Head Shots

I googled peter hurley head shots, so I could show Gabi what kinds of poses to do and how to do the famous “squinch”. We mainly based her photos off of these photos.Screen Shot 2015-12-02 at 10.09.20 PM.pngScreen Shot 2015-12-02 at 10.10.59 PM.pngScreen Shot 2015-12-02 at 10.10.26 PM.png

I set the ISO at 640, the aperture at f/4, and shutter speed at 1/200. I had to use a plain white sheet as the backdrop, which I ironed out as much as I could. Because I was doing this at home, I also only had one studio light. To get more light, I had my dad hold this huge, bright light close to her face, with two flashlights to even attempt to match the flash of the studio light.IMG_5280The photo above is with no editing and before my dad and I got the extra lights. The shadow was pretty bad on the other side of her face.034The photo above is the original image without any editing done.034The photo above, is the final image. I retouched the background to get rid of the wrinkles. Second, I set the white balance to whitest part of the background. Then I adjusted the levels and color. 038

The photo above was edited at home using the “Edit” option in Photos on my Mac, because I don’t have Photoshop. While the bottom 2 photos were done in class on Photoshop.

12These 3 photos above are my favorites, because the background is mainly white. I opened the image in Camera Raw and used the white balance tool and set the background white.1cropThen I decided to crop it down, because after looking through Hurley’s head shots, I noticed he crops off the head a little bit.


Thanksgiving Break

This Thanksgiving break, I didn’t really do anything special, I mainly hung out with some friends. On Thanksgiving, it was just my parents and I, and we just ate all day and decorated the Christmas tree. 1

2The two photos above were taken while my family was decorating the tree. 3I wanted to take a picture of an ornament, so I had to use the flash, because there wasn’t enough light. The only bad thing about using the flash, was that it would leave a shadow on the bottom of the ornament, which I tried to crop out. 54The two photos above are of the food, I don’t eat turkey, so I took pictures of my parents food. I didn’t realize the tinsel in the photo, so I tried to crop out as much as I could. 6The last photo is of Gabi, who I spent most of my Thanksgiving break with. All we did was lay in bed and watch Netflix for the majority of the break.

DIY Light Tent

For the DIY Light Tent, I looked on this website to find out how to do it. IMG_5161

These were my materials that I used for the light tent.IMG_5162

Next, I cut squares on each side of the box and cut off the flap parts. IMG_5164

Then I covered all the openings with white paper.


This was the final with the product in there and my dad holding the flash over the box.


My paper wasn’t big enough to cover the holes in the box with one piece, so in some places I had to layer it which is shown in the photos.

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