Archive for December, 2008

31
Dec
08

12/31/2008

Lettuce Lake

Lettuce Lake

We spent an afternoon at The National Audubon Society’s Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary, justly famous for its birds and its beauty. Being the slowest time of the day, the birds were not much in evidence, but there is beauty aplenty all along the 2.25 miles of boardwalk.

We did see a few birds. This Little Blue Heron is feeding on one of the smaller lettuce lakes (a pond really), and I really liked the contrast of the blues and magentas of the bird against the crisp greens of the lettuce. I took several shots as the bird was moving rapidly and I wanted to catch an interesting pose.

Sony DSC H50 at its full telephoto (465mm equiv.). F4.5 @1/400th @ ISO 400. Programed Auto.

Cropped slightly in Lightroom at the bottom to bring the bird to the third lines (he was moving too fast for perfect composition and I wanted the pose). Sharpen Landscape preset, and small amounts of Clarity and Vibrance.

From the Sanibel and Everglades Gallery.

30
Dec
08

12/30/2008

Fan

Fan

My wife and I are in Florida for a few days, visiting Sanibel Island and maybe the Everglades. No Pic of the Day for yesterday because we left home at 4 AM to catch our flight. We got to Ft. Myers with time enough to walk the Indigo Trail at Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge. There were not, to the honest, many birds in the late afternoon, but this intersection of two plants, in very different life-stages, caught my eye, as design. 

As simple a shot as they come. Simply frame and shoot.

Sony DSC H50 at full wide angle, macro mode. F2.7 @ 1/40th @  ISO 125. Programed Auto.

Small amount of sharpening and Vibrance in Lightroom. I used the Auto setting under Color and White Balance to warm the image (taken in the shade) slightly.

From the new Sanibel and Everglades Gallery.

28
Dec
08

12/28/2008

 

Icy Fingerss

Icy Fingerss

Emmons Preserve is another of the pocket gems around my home. Just a few acres along a stream, set aside by the Kennebunk Land Trust, with a short trail that follows the stream up and over a set of gentle falls between two pools. I go back there many times each a year.

This day, the frozen spray was the subject…along the mossy banks and clinging to branches over the water. Impossible constructions that caught the winter light. I played with Program Shift on the H9 to capture a variety of images, some with the water blurred to silk like this one, and some with the water crisp and frozen in motion.

Sony DSC H9 at about 270mm equiv. for framing. F7.0 @ 1/13th @ ISO 100. Programed Auto. Program shift engaged to decrease the aperture for a long exposure to blur the flowing water. 

From the Around Home Gallery.

27
Dec
08

12/27/2008

 

Impression of Fritillary

Impression of Fritillary

Two years ago, the Jekyll Island Commission planted wildflowers along the causeway out to the island, and when I visited in October, they were in their prime. Fritillary migration was also at its peak, so the flower expanses were were filled with butterflies. I got a lot of excellent portrait shots of butterflies (and bees) on the flowers, but this chance shot really pleases me. “I could not have done it if I had tried.” Sometimes chance is better than any amount of calculation.

Sony DSC H9 at the wide end of the macro zoom. F4.0 @ 1/100th @ ISO 100. Programed Auto.

Nothing much more than a bit of crop, some Vibrance, and some Sharpening in Lightroom.

From the Jekyll Island Gallery.

26
Dec
08

12/26/2008

 

Winter Light

Winter Light

Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge Headquarters, Wells Maine. Just a short loop of trail. I will probably walk it again today, and I have thousands of times in the past 10 years. I rarely come away without at least one memorable image.

This a spring day with a rare late blowing snow. It had just stopped and the sun was breaking through. The unusual light, spring light, on the snow and the trees is really the subject of this image. 

Sony DSC H9 at about 55mm equiv. F4.0 @ 1/60th @ ISO 100. Programed Auto.

I cropped a bit on the left in Lightroom to bring the sun on the tree trunks more towards the lines of power in image (see A Really Strong Suggestion of Thirds).  Mild recovery, some Clarity and Vibrance. Landscape Sharpen preset. 

It is from the Winter Weather Gallery.

25
Dec
08

12/25/2008

 

Christmas!

Christmas!

This is what Christmas is about: love, happiness, joy, celebration (and all because of Jesus).

Classic snapshot. “Look at me Kelia!” Using the LCD with the camera held one-handed for the angle.

Sony DSC H50 with the zoom at about 60mm equiv. F3.2 @ 1/50 @ ISO 200, Auto Flash

Noise Reduction and Auto Fix in Photoshop Elements. Like I said, a snapshot all the way.

24
Dec
08

12/24/2008

Holly and Ice

Holly and Ice

Holly, sharp as our failure to love, berries red as the blood that was shed, ice as cold as the world he came to save. We celebrate his birth. Merry Christmas!

I saw this bush, covered in ice,  in passing on the street, and immediately thought of it as a Christmas image. I took a few shots of the berries and leaves in their sheath of ice. The light was not ideal, as the bush was tight up against a house in deep shadow.

Wide macro. F2.7 (wide open) @ 1/50th @ ISO 100.

Just basic sharpening and Clarity in Lightroom. Cropped for effect.

Because of the poor lighting, slow shutter speed, and hand-held macro, this just holds sharpness. Just. Enough.

From the Winter Weather Gallery.

23
Dec
08

12/23/2008

Plum in Snow

Plum in Snow

Parson’s Beach after the 20 inches of snow we got day before yesterday. A beach plum (rose hip) at the tip of an otherwise buried bush. Another exposure challenge, but the Snow scene mode on the H50 handled it well.

F5.6 @ 1/640th @ ISO 100. Snow Scene Programed Mode.

I tried to take this at the tele end of the zoom for framing, but could not get in tight enough. To make it work I had to capture all the detail in the plum, and the texture of the snow. Therefore I zoomed out all the way to 31mm equivalent to take advantage of the super-macro focusing at that end, stepped off into the snowdrift to get close enough, set the camera so the LCD was on, and took the image at arms length. It is options like this that keep me carrying and using the H50.

This required only a tiny crop on the left, and sharpening in Lightroom.

It is from the Winter Weather Gallery.

22
Dec
08

12/22/2008

Wind on Snow

Wind on Snow

We got about 20 inches of snow overnight, and as soon as I shoveled out, I drove down along the coast to see what there was to see. Access was limited, as the plows were out, but far from finished. This is a shot of what the wind did along the back side of the dunes. The snow was just the right consistancy to for wind sculpting.

The Sony H50 has some preset scene modes, including Snow.  The exposure was F5.6 @ 1/250th @ ISO 100. Snow Scene Programed Mode.  The lens was zoomed out to about a 160mm equivalent to frame the detail.

I had to brighten this a bit in Lightroom, and I pulled some blue saturtion out to make the shadows more gray. Sharpen Landscape preset.

This is from the Winter Weather Gallery.

21
Dec
08

12/21/2008

 

Winter Road

Winter Road

In honor of the snowstorm outside. From last winter. A color photo of a black and white world.

The trick with show shots is always maintaining detail in the highlights, and much of the image is going to be highlights, without the rest of the tones in the image going black. 

Sony H9 at about a 50mm equiv. focal length. F5.6 @ 1/400th @ ISO 100. Programed Auto.

Only sharpened slightly in Lightroom.

It is from the Winter Weather Gallery.