'scene' along the way, a second look, adventure, Bayport, friends, fun, Just do it, learning, life goes on, perseverance, photography, Rise and shine, sunrise, Up and at 'em

Sunrise/Moonset…

I have a friend who seems to always find the perfect spot to view an unusual situation for a photo op. Sometimes it requires being on a beach 50 miles from home at 2 AM, which I did once and it really wasn’t too bad. So I really had no excuse not to try to find the spot for the sunrise and moonset that were going to occur at roughly the same time on Thursday morning. Doesn’t that sound intriguing? Would they be in the same shot somehow? I won’t know until I see her pictures, because I didn’t head out quite as early as I would have had to. But I did decide that I might be able to get a good view of the moonset and sunrise from Bayport. It’s almost as far of a drive for me, but a much easier traffic-wise and I know the area. So off I went and this is what I found, which isn’t what I hoped for, but it was fine. The reverse is true for this evening, a moonrise and sunset happening at nearly the same time. And if I want to join my friends I could find the spot in the daylight. We’ll see how brave/energetic I feel later today…

I hurried to take a picture when I saw the nice reflection of the moon in the water.
And I was happy to get this shot also.
But then I had to play with the Lensball but honestly couldn’t make heads or tails out of what I was seeing as I was shooting. And yes, the moon shows in this picture, just not the way I might have expected or wished.
I think I bought the Lensball because I could also buy this little stand that you can attach to your tripod. And yes, it’s an essential element for someone shooting alone.
As the sky got lighter the reflections disappeared.
But the colors of the sky got prettier.
And then it just faded away.
But wait, there was a sunrise happening across the parking lot!
Through the camera lens.
And from the iPhone.

adventure, bucket list, changing times, fantasy images, finding my way, following the rules, fun, Just do it, learning, perseverance, photography, simple things, sky, sunset, technology

New toys…

With photography as my favorite thing to do there are a lot of ways for me to spend money on my hobby. I tend to think that I take pictures for ‘free’ since I well remember the days of having your film developed for lots of $$$ and discovering that only a very few of your pictures actually turned out the way you wanted them to. And I have already upgraded my camera and bought several lenses beyond what I started with. And tripods, I’ve bought a few of those. New lenses need bigger and better bags to hold them, and I’m thinking that I ought to buy a wagon of sorts to carry this stuff with me so I can actually use it when I’m shooting. But the reality is that there is only one way to improve my photography and that’s by working on my technique and learning all that I can about how to do better. So I resist buying more stuff, usually. But the Lens Ball has been calling me for a while now. Something different to play with. So I gave in. I took it out at sunset last night, which meant I didn’t have to deal with it getting too hot to hold, a pitfall I’ve heard a lot about, and totally freaked out over the fear of dropping it. It’s heavier than I expected too. So I have only two pictures from last night, but it’s a little something different. Something to help me get through these days, one at a time…

Here’s one taken by the iPhone, and I flipped the image over. The image is upside-down in the lens as you view it to take a picture. Straiss your brain a little to work with it…

a second look, adventure, friends, fun, learning, life, making memories, moments, natural wonders, perseverance, photography

Zoo babies…

You know I was looking for orangutans at the zoo on Monday. I especially wanted to see if we could see changes in the newest little baby, but on our first go-round we never did see the mom and baby, so contented ourselves with the antics of the bigger babies. But before we left we came back to the orangutans, and this time not only were mom and baby there, but she moved out into the light and seemed to display him to us as any proud mama might do. I have barely looked at any non-orangutan pictures so far, so forgive me the orangutan overload. I can’t help myself.

He has gotten a lot more interested in the world around him, or so I thought. I’m sure I’ll be back in a few more weeks so we can watch him as he grows…

a second look, fun, Just do it, learning, life, making memories, nature, perseverance, photography, second chances, simple things

Lessons from the zoo…

The tiger in my feature photo was snoozing the entire few minutes that I stood there taking his picture. I’ve only watched him pace before, pace and pace, and it distressed me to see him so full of tension. But not always apparently, so that made me feel better.

And I sought out the snow leopard because he is a usual favorite and I didn’t get to see him last time. I thought he always slept on one of the branches in his enclosure, but he was in a different spot. I checked the photos in the camera and thought that my camera was not ignoring the mesh fence so I was disappointed. But what I was seeing was the shadows from the mesh ceiling of the enclosure. It was probably noon when I got to the zoo that day, and that wasn’t a good thing. The sun was higher, casting shadows, and the parking lot was maxed out and you had to drive around hunting for a parking spot. Earlier is better.

I forced myself to walk the rest of the zoo and I took a few pictures but the lure of the orangutans was awfully hard to resist.

The giraffe wasn’t cooperating so this photo will have to do.

But I can’t help myself, it’s always going to be about the orangutans for me. Mother and baby spent a long time huddled off in the shadows with another adult. I took pictures without knowing for sure if they were even facing us. I did get a few shots though. It was a good day.

The informative onlooker wasn’t at the orangutan enclosure on this trip, so based on what she has told me in the past I believe that that’s grannie’s hand, giving her daughter an encouraging pat to let her know she is doing a great job with her little one. We all could use a little encouragement now and then.

a second look, friends, fun, Just do it, learning, live and learn, making memories, perseverance, photography, second chances, technology

Speed racers…

My friend’s handsome grandson was the reason for Sunday’s trip to the speed skating competition. He hasn’t been competing for the last couple of years, but so far his record for one of the races still stands, and the announcer welcomed him back to the races.

It’s always fun to go out and take pictures, but in this instance it was an exercise in trying to get decent images of subjects in motion. And when we got there and the kids were just warming up I took a few shots and thought okay, not so hard. Then they started racing for real and I just set my focus on the track and started shooting when I thought they were about to zoom through. I had no idea what I got. The leader of our photography group calls that ‘spray and pray’, just keep shooting and hope you got something. That’s exactly what I did.

The races were called in order by age groups, starting at 6 and under, and some of the races included both girls and boys. The longer races required multiple trips around the track, as many as 15 in one case, but inevitably the slowest racers would be overtaken by the faster contestants in the race and they would have to finish their last lap after the race had actually been won. In this picture the fastest racers are bearing down on our last two.

My heart went out to them, especially the little kids who had to finish their races alone, but finish they did. I saw no tears, and no grandstanding over the wins. Well, except for this guy.

The longer distances had the racers all in a pack, and so close together I don’t see how they didn’t trip each other, but they didn’t. It was amazing how in step with each other they were.

Betty said that her training in sports photography taught her to try to catch their facial expressions when possible. So I liked these guys.

Some kids killed time by sitting on the podium where the trophies would soon be handed out.

This race ended in a photo finish…

And still more more racers…

The checkered flag means it’s the end…

'scene' along the way, adventure, facing facts, finding my way, following the rules, learning, life, live and learn, on closer examination, perseverance, photography, reality check, travel

Sloss Furnaces…

I’ve had a little harder time deciding what I wanted to write about this last stop on our Birmingham trip. I had come to Birmingham on a whim after all, and knew nothing of it’s history., so it came as a surprise to me to realize that such an industrial city existed in the south. And with my usual rosy glasses outlook I thought about all the jobs and opportunity it mist have been for anyone willing to work. I took these photos at the Vulcan museum. They came from a display with pictures of groups of workers with these four highlighted. It tells the story pretty well.

The sheer size of the Sloss Furnaces was amazing. You could wander the grounds with machinery towering over you, and you could walk into tunnels under the ground. It was impossible to try to imagine what that place was like on any given day when it was running full steam, the noise of the machinery, the smell of the molten steel, and the heat. Did the machinery cause the very ground to vibrate? Hard and dirty jobs, day after day, and still they worked…