If you read my previous post, you’d know that I left my tripod at home and was without it for our Tuesdays With Seniors Sacramento Delta trip. So when we reached Locke shortly after lunch, my challenge was to shoot this wonderful town full of historical buildings without doing HDR.

And, those of you who have been following this blog for a while know that I’ve worked hard to become one with my tripod and to rely on it for many types of shooting occasions. Past shoots have taught me that you can’t really do HDR handheld, and I almost always shoot HDR when I come across rustic buildings, etc. So I shot Locke handheld and tried to add an HDR look in processing.

“Locke was founded in 1915 after a fire broke out in the Chinese section of nearby Walnut Grove. The Chinese who lived in that area decided that it was time to establish a town of their own. Levee construction originally brought the Chinese to this area, but by the time Locke was built most of the work was in farm labor. Locke had many businesses that catered to the farm workers and residents of this region. In the 1940’s restaurants, bakeries, herb shops, fish markets, gambling halls, boarding houses, brothels, grocery stores, a school, clothing stores, and the Star Theater lined the bustling streets of Locke. At its peak 600 residents, and as many as 1500 people occupied the town of Locke.  By 1920 Locke stood essentially as you see it now.

“On August 2, 1970, Locke was added to the registry of national historical places, by the Sacramento County Historical Society, because of its unique status as the only town in the United States built exclusively by the Chinese for the Chinese.” Check www.locketown.com for more information on this amazing town.

Now, you can see Locke shot with my handheld camera. Did I overcome the challenge?

6 thoughts on “Just one of life’s challenges: Locke, California

  1. Love the photos. I think you did amazingly well. The streets are indeed very quaint.

    The historic information is great. Everything you need for a town, including gambling halls and brothels, right? 😉

    It was great shooting with you yesterday, Anne!


  2. You can shoot HDR handheld – I do it all the time. Why? I don’t like lugging equipment around. As I don’t know what kind of camera you are using, I don’t know if this will help you out or not. On my Df (or D7000), I set up the spread and number of images I want, usually + and – 1, 2, and 0. The camera is set on rapid fire – I can get one shot after the other quite quickly. Yes, I move, so nothing is perfect, but if you are shooting a landscape with a breeze, movement is still an issue. Next, software is important, and how well its deghosting and repositioning works so that things do not blur. For me, I have found that Photomatix Pro 5 works best – I have never seen deghosting of the quality it provides – you can even choose which image is the one you want as the “main” picture and the software appears to work around it. From there, into Photomatix for foundational work, and refinement in any other program if you wish – or not – such as On1, LR, PS. Give it a shot – and if you have not used Photomatix, get the trial version. I think you will be pleasantly surprised at what you can do without a tripod and still have nice HDR. BTW, I enjoy your posts!


    1. Thank you for taking time to help. I have shot HDR handheld before and done so successfully. Then I tried it again and most of the pictures were soft. I shoot with a Nikon D7100 most of the time and use Photomatix Pro and LR. With one failure, I think it’s best to use a tripod whenever possible. If I were hiking, then maybe I wouldn’t want to lug the tripod. But then I have the Manfrotto Be Free and it’s really light. So, for me, it came down to laziness! I might give it another try though. Thanks for reading my blog and your suggestions. I will try it.

      Liked by 1 person

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