attention to detail, attitude adjustments, brainstorms, facing facts, Florida landmarks, following the rules, friends, fun, Home Team, live and learn, old dogs new tricks, perseverance, photography, technology

Take me out to the ballgame…

We have a mixed marriage, Nikon guy, Canon, (ahem), girl. Neither of us will ever convince the other to switch, not that we’ve tried. But I thought I scored a point for my team when Bernie’s Nikon wouldn’t focus through the netting that is everywhere in the ball park. His idea that we go to a minor league baseball game on Sunday at noon had me rolling my eyes. Noon, on a summer-ish day in Florida? But then it dawned on me that I could try to use the precapture mode in the camera on something other than birds. All righty then, so off we went.

He also wanted to see what the current conditions would be for photography in case our camera club might like to go there for a photo shoot. They used to go on Saturday nights when the park sets off a fireworks display after the home games are over. Except this year there is a nearby eagle nest with babies ready to fledge, so they had cancelled the fireworks from the night before. Nice of them. But the issue for photography is the netting that goes all the way around the seating area of the park, so no clear area to shoot pictures of the game. His Nikon wouldn’t focus through the netting, but my Canon did. I scored a mental point for myself over that. And I blew up first picture I took, the picture of the mascot, as big as I could see it in the camera and couldn’t see the netting, except for the netting behind him. So I went all out, shooting bursts of the pitchers, trying to get the ball just as it comes of the fingers. And shooting the batters, trying to get the ball just as it hits the bat. And I was sure that the camera was ignoring the netting, so my pictures would be great. Ever the optimist.

This was the first picture I took. My test picture. And I was quite happy with it.
This is an iPhone picture to give you an idea of the whole park.
I didn’t quite nail the picture of the ball leaving the pitcher’s fingers. And I was a bit heart broken to look at all those pictures I’d taken and the netting was obvious in all of them.
Every time a runner was on third base I got into position to take this shot. And I got the ball on the bat all right, but netting galore so not a good picture.
I took this photo of the gal singing the national anthem, but I had no idea that the feed would break up.

So this is the Phillies 1A minor league team called the Threshers, located in Clearwater. It’s a fun way to spend the day. And I needn’t have worried about the noon time weather since we stayed on the upper level under cover, with a fabulous breeze. But the truer test would be to go down to the lowest seats at field level, much closer to the darn netting but also in the sun, and maybe the camera would have dealt with the netting better. I should have thought of that while we were there.

attitude adjustments, facing facts, life goes on, nothing's easy, perseverance, photography, technology, unintended consequences

I’ve been driven to drink…

The feature photo is something I saw while waiting for a traffic light the other day. It caught my eye because the day before I had dithered over buying this;

Eventually I said “Yes way to the rose”. Don’t take that as a recommendation, it was just okay.
I’ve been through several boxes of this after my friend Rita introduced me to it when I visited her. Nice and light. Summery. And the rose version isn’t bad either.
Happened into Sam’s in time for a wine tasting yesterday. This was so good, fruity, I’d have never looked at the bottle twice. I drank the last glass of the open bottle of ‘Yes way’ last night while I let this chill.
While my guy perused the beer isle at Total Wine I went outside and took pictures of the crazy clouds, then I wandered through Home Goods, and when I checked to see if he was done he was right where I left him in the beer aisle. So I wandered a bit and spotted this, but didn’t buy it.

In this particular case it’s technology that’s driven me to drink. I discovered that my camera will let you take a ‘precapture’. So you focus on a bird and when the action happens you take the shot and half the time you get this;

If you use this new feature you half-press the shutter button while you find your shot, then when to do push the shutter button all the way it takes the photos from a half second before you pressed the shutter. Great, right? So I took a ton of pictures that way the other day. but my software doesn’t want to open them. So this morning I upgraded the software, upgraded the camera firmware, and added a new editing program. And everything fought me as I worked on it. It’s been a long morning and I still haven’t successfully created even one picture. I have wasted half the day, but certainly it must be close to 5 o’clock somewhere…

'scene' along the way, a second look, attention to detail, attitude adjustments, facing facts, Florida landmarks, friends, fun, live and learn, perseverance, photography, technology


Saturday was our last scheduled photo walk to Tampa Bay Downs, and we were happy to not have to rush out as early as we usually do when we are meeting with the group. But when we were ready to leave I found I’d left the car keys in the house, so I set the camera down in the tricycle basket while I went to retrieve them. You know what happens next, right? Yes, I forgot to pick the camera back up and off we went without it. I didn’t realize what I’d done until I went to get the camera out of the back of the car when we got there. Bernie asked if I’d rather just go home, but I figured I’d just use my phone and take photos of the people instead of the races. Only my phone was down to 14% battery power. Sigh, but all was not lost since his phone was charged.

Here was a candidate right off the bat…

I guess I now had hair on the brain…

This tee shirt caused me to stalk this guy before I finally got a picture…

Really? Heels at the track when you have a kid to chase around? Or ever for that matter?

We wound up sitting up in the grandstand, which turned out to be a better vantage point than we thought. Even with the phone the photos were interesting, mostly because of the sky.

I even got a couple of horses with all four feet off the ground.

I stalked that little cutie as her family was heading away from me. If anyone had been paying attention I’d probably have been arrested. There is virtually no seating that is out of the sun except for the grandstand. I suspect that that’s where we’ll be sitting when next season’s photo walks start up again. The breeze was fabulous. Not a bad day all in all…

attention to detail, attitude adjustments, brainstorms, bugs, dragonflies, facing facts, Florida wildlife, nature, old dogs new tricks, perseverance, photography, technology

The Dunning-Kruger effect…

Our fearless photo club leader has a name for the syndrome when you are such a novice at something that you don’t know what you don’t know. I hope I remember to ask him what it is so I can repeat it before I post this. He also isn’t a fan of Youtube videos, but I watched one yesterday anyhow. It was on setting my new camera to take stacked images in the camera. Yup, automatically. Plus when we got up this morning there was an upgrade to Lightroom that added a ‘denoise’ button to the editing panel. Be still my heart. So off I went, camera and tripod in hand, down to the little neighborhood park. I figured that the dragonflies stay still enough for the camera to shoot 20 or so images in a second or two, and I was right, I got tons of images. But I don’t think I got the effect that I was looking for. Operator error I’m sure. I over-estimated my abilities because I didn’t know what I didn’t know. At least denoise worked well though…

This tricolor heron was moving, so not the shot I had set out to take but I took the shot anyhow. I can’t resist posting it because he had a fish, and I had had no clue when I took the shot.
I don’t know what is so great about landing in the muck to pose for me, but that’s what they did.
I was attracting a crowd as I took my pictures.
I don’t feed them, but I guess they figure there is always a first time.

I had first gone to my usual spot that gives me my sunrise view from this park. But the sun was up high enough to be in my eyes, so I moved to the opposite side of the park to shoot these pictures. With the sun over my shoulder I was quite surprised to see that tri-color, I hadn’t noticed him before. Plus the shallow water revealed some bigger fish than I would have expected to be there. And it turned out that Google knew the term for not knowing what you don’t know. And now you do too!

attitude adjustments, backyard visitors, birds, brainstorms, facing facts, Florida wildlife, nature, Natures little dramas, perseverance, photography, unintended consequences

Unintended consequences…

My complaint, when I returned to Wild Birds Unlimited, was that the cardinals had taken over the Bird Buddy. I never imagined that I wouldn’t be thrilled to see cardinals anywhere, but I was getting essentially the same photos and videos every day. So the advice they gave me was to add a little cup feeder and fill it with dried mealworms. I’d attract lots of other backyard birds, they said. But what I got was crows! They announce themselves loudly, knock the little cup feeder onto the ground where the squirrels enjoy a treat, and all the other birds lay low when they are around. Even the cardinals. These pictures were taken through the (dirty) sliding glass door and the screening on the lanai. But you get the idea.

He was making a racket out there.
I didn’t realize he was also sampling the gourmet bird seed in the Bird Buddy. Which didn’t take his picture.
Mealworms do seem to be his preferred food however. And I’ll keep using them until I run out, but that’ll be the end of that.

I do need more bird seed, but I’m asking myself if I need another pole? To hold another feeder or two? With some other bird seed mix? Hmmm…

'scene' along the way, attitude adjustments, brainstorms, facing facts, life goes on, perseverance, photography

Shoe shopping…

I went shoe shopping at Dillard’s yesterday. The shoe department was huge, and there were many, many choices, almost none of which were ‘me’. I’ve never worn a pair of heels like these in my life, and now doesn’t seem be the time to start. But then I spotted them, hanging on the wall… Oofos. They followed me home…