Monday, November 29, 2010

PEF Barn Dance!

[Sorry about the long posting silence... It's been a busy few weeks, and we've got a very busy few weeks coming up!  I'm back-dating some of these posts, just because I'm a little ashamed at how long it's taken me to blog about these fun events...]

I remember now why I didn't end up blogging about the PEF barn dance last year... It happens in November, right on the cusp of the crazy busy holiday season.  And it's about the most difficult setting for decent photos -- dim lighting plus lots of fast movement equals difficulty getting the shots.  Especially if you're basically shooting in auto mode, which I was last year.  (Still annoyed about that, by the way... I can't believe how long I was in Program mode!)  Usually, the barn dance is held in the Rocky Common Room, which is a beautiful old hall -- with dim lights and really high ceilings so you can't bounce a flash effectively.  So last year, I made do without a flash or with attempts to bounce my flash off a wall, and then painstakingly went through hundreds of photos trying to find a few keepers... and never got around to blogging about it.

This year, though, the barn dance was held in the Wilson black box theater.  I was all excited, thinking I'd have a nice low ceiling for decent bounce flash, and looking forward to what I could get this year now that I actually know how to work some of the dials and buttons and doohickeys on my camera.  :)  And yes, there were low ceilings -- but they were black.  As were the walls.  And the floor.  Which makes sense, given that it's a "black box" theater... But they ATE my flash.  Literally zero light bouncing back!  So -- I had a crash course in trying out my new Demb Flip-It bounce card.  Which I think has a much steeper learning curve than I was expecting... I still haven't quite figured out how to make the bounce card work better than just plain old direct flash would work (i.e., not very well at all).  But I had fun playing around with it, and now have a whole new thing to learn and (hopefully) master!

But enough techy photography talk.  There's a mighty fine shindig to blog about!

The barn dance is always so much fun -- it's so different from your typical college night out!  There's square dancing, called by our very own Bill, a pie-eating contest, limbo... All manner of down-home country fun.  :)  And everyone really gets into it, coming dressed for a country dance -- who knew Princeton students had country dance clothing in their preppy closets?  ;)

Square dancing fun...

The end of the pie-eating contest:

And some good old-fashioned limbo competitiveness!

We had to leave early to relieve our babysitter (thanks again, Andrea, for staying with our little boy!), but this was a super fun way to spend a rare date night.  :)  Looking forward to the next big PEF shindig!