Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The Prize


As mentioned before, the pelicans keep a close eye on the fish cleaning tables at the harbor and when the scraps are thrown into the water, the race (or fight) is on. This guy has the prize...but the competition is closing in.

I'm finally back on the net after another self-imposed hiatus due to running over my data limit. Gotta find a better way!!!

I'll catch up on all the blogs and leave comments soon...thanks for your patience.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Abbey's Sunset


I love sunsets! you can find all kinds of interesting views as the sun is going down...like the reflection of the sun on the visor of this boat, which was named Abbey!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

May 13, 2004


Wooden hulls and a drilling rig...and Gulf King was KING!

Friday, February 17, 2012

BIG Hat


It's still pretty rainy and stormy down in my neck of the woods so I'm still digging through the archives. This is me, at one of my favorite places for sunsets...on the bay front. I'm sporting a big Texas hat, which I bought to wear while cutting the grass and working in the garden...can you say YEE-HAW?

Thursday, February 16, 2012

The Angel Of Redfish Bay


Came across this today as I was browsing through some old CD's. I must have done this 10 or 12 years ago.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Flower


Been a little under the weather but I'm back.
Sigma 70/2.8 macro

Friday, February 10, 2012

Grads



I've rattled on about the dynamic range of digital cameras before. Have you ever shot a beautiful landscape, especially in the bright hours of daylight, and found that no amount of exposure adjustment could keep you from either having the foreground so dark that you couldn't make out the details or the sky was so bright that you just had a blob of white or light gray? If you've had those results, it's not a product of your lack of skill as a photographer, it's simply a matter of conditions pushing the capabilities of the equipment past their limits. You can get around that problem in a couple of ways...the "new" way is to spend a little time at the computer and "rebuild" the image in software like Adobe's Photoshop. That works well if you spend the time to acquire the skills. The old fashioned way is to shoot with graduated neutral density filters (grads). Grads come in a bewildering assortment of sizes, shapes and grades. They're pretty simple to use but they do require a little thought to get the best performance. The idea is pretty simple...if it's too bright, put shades on it. Cover the bright area with the dark area of the filter and cover the darker area with the clear area of the filter...Voila!...balance! You can buy ND grads that are made in a circular format...just screw it into the filter threads on the end of your lens. I never cared for that approach 'cause it forces you to adjust your composition to suit the line of transition in the filter. A much better solution, for me, is the rectangular variety with a filter holder that allows the filter to slide up and down in a track...it can also be rotated so that the line of transition, between light and dark, can be tilted to follow the horizon (or other bright area). With the larger rectangles, you have a lot of leeway in positioning...you compose the image that you want, then adjust the filter to suit that composition. Some photographers don't use a holder, they just hold the filter by hand and move it as needed...that allows for quick adjustment but I always found that I didn't have enough hands to be very proficient with that technique. I wanted to post some shots of the results of using these filters but it's been raining for the last couple of days...so outdoor photography is on the back burner!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Sometimes...


Now and then, I miss the discipline of film photography...you've heard that before, right? Film and developing costs were a great incentive for getting the shot without a lot of trial and error type fooling around. Digital makes it easy...take the shot, check it out on the back of the camera, make an adjustment or two, shoot again and then check it again...repeat as necessary! With film, it was a pretty common practice to bracket (shoot the scene with different exposures) but you still never knew what you had till the film was developed. A good light meter made things much easier and saved a lot of expensive film and development costs...a good meter would pay for itself pretty quickly. My Sekonic 508 doesn't see nearly as much use as it did in times past but I still use it pretty often and it pays it's way in other ways now...it saves time. It's great for figuring flash exposures, for determining dynamic range in a scene and for finding 18% neutral reflectance. Cameras have pretty good meters built into them these days but they won't do what a dedicated meter, like this one, will. It will spot meter down to 1 degree or meter incident light. Most high end cameras have spotmeters but they generally cover 10 degrees or more and all built in meters measure only reflected light, not incident (ambient) light. Most built in meters are very good but, you know, they have their limitations. Precision spot and ambient meters have a big limitation too...they'll give you the information you need, but they leave it up to you on how to use that information...I'm still learning.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Calla


I've always been a sucker for Callas. When I first discovered Ansel Adams, it was his Calla shots that really hooked me...even more than his famous landscapes. I was in HEB yesterday and they had some potted Callas in their flower section...I brought a pot home and when I'm sure they won't freeze, I'll put them in the ground...out by the front porch.


Sigma 105-2.8 macro

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Another Blast From The Past


It was another of those days that didn't allow me the time to get out and shoot...so here's another shot from the archives. This is from Mission San Jose in San Antonio...quite a few years ago.