learning, old dogs new tricks, photography, special effects, sunset

Fire in the sky…

The trouble with coming home with a LOT of bracketed photos for HDR is that by the time you have been concentrating on them for a while they look dull unless they are intense!  So forgive me if they are assaulting your eyeballs please, because after spending all morning on them I’m not about to start over.  I wonder which of our hosts, Eddie or Bob, sold their soul to the devil to arrange for such a spectacular sunset for this photo shoot.  By the time we got to Dunedin and had assembled and then walked to the pier the sunset was up and running.  Eddie told all of us to post our photos on the meet up group site, and then I heard him say that he had never gotten as much criticism as he got after he began to post HDR photos.  So thanks in advance Eddie!

3-243-24boat3-24boats23-24boats33-24deck3-24deck23-24boatssunset

Florida landmarks, old dogs new tricks, perseverance, photography, sunset

St. Pete blue hour photowalk…

Last night we had a group of twenty or so people for the group photo walk in St. Pete.  That was all new territory to me with so many potential places to photograph.  I’m not sure why the night photography appeals to me so much, especially since I’ve never been  a night person.  Tomorrow night I’ll get a quick lesson in editing these type of photos, so I’m flying by the seat of my pants today.  Thank goodness for Easy HDR…

3-22church3-22HDRbridge3-22HDRboats13-22HDRarcade3-22HDRHookah3-22HDRlighttrails

This last photo surprised me.  The streaks at the bottom are taillights of cars that zipped through the shot while the camera was taking a slow shutter photo.  It’s an effect you can try to get, but this was accidental.  Happy accident.  Now I’ll try for that effect and miss it.

fun, learning, old dogs new tricks, perseverance, photography, special effects, sunrise, sunset, technology

Night photo walk…

I went out for the sunrise this morning, but I was still under the influence of the night photo walk that I did last night.  I was having such a good time last night that it was a shame to cut it short, but the guilt over leaving the dogs too long got to me.  Plus I had to go home and download a new program, Easy HDR, in order to process the photos in HDR (High Dynamic Range) as I had seen them on the photo group’s Facebook page.  Well, maybe I didn’t have to, but using that program was going to be a whole lot easier than trying to figure it out by myself in Lightroom.  So this morning instead of being happy to see the sun come up, I was lamenting the end of the darkness because I wanted to get a photo of the bait shop adjacent to the Hammond Creek bridge to use as an HDR photo.  And I couldn’t resist the Great Blue Heron (two-footed again), as he walked on top of the wall but looked like he was walking on the sunrise itself.

baitshackhdr.jpgAnd more from the walk in Tarpon Springs last night.  I swore I wouldn’t use the presets in the program, but it’s hard to resist instant gratification …

getaguru2storefrongnightstrongIMG_6742_3_4_easyHDR-dramatic-dark23-8sunsetboatsredboatHellasAnd just so you know, the guys from the group marched over and asked the PTB at Hella’s to turn on the lights on the soldier out front.  And they did!

adventure, Florida landmarks, friends, fun, learning, old dogs new tricks, perseverance, photography, Uncategorized

And they’re off…

They say that the third time’s a charm, and I wouldn’t argue with that.  Three times I signed up to go to Tampa Bay Downs with the photo group, and twice something came up and I had to cancel.  But not yesterday, and for that I’m grateful.  Not only was it a great day weather-wise, but I really enjoyed the friendly group that gathered to watch, and photograph, the races.  We had several press passes to share amongst us, and those passes allowed us each to have a turn at taking photos from the inside rail.  It quickly became apparent to me what an advantage that really was.  All the useable racing photos that I got yesterday were taken while I was having my turn at the inside rail.  And they were taken after talking with the other group members and adjusting my camera settings accordingly.  I would have loved to have stayed longer but I was feeling sorry for the dogs back at home, and had an hour’s drive ahead of me…2-24horses12-24horses22-24race2-24races32-24races52-24races42-24horsesfeatureAnd, of course, I walked in the door and they looked at me as if to say, “Oh, are you home already?”

old dogs new tricks, perseverance, photography, technology, unintended images

Technology…

I pulled the trigger on this camera bag so long ago that I had my doubts that it was ever going to arrive.  But it did, finally, and I think I’m pleased with it.  Right now it’s holding my camera with 150-600mm lens attached.  Plus the extra plastic ‘hood’ (I have no clue what it’s really called) that came with it.  Knowing that I could fit this into the bag as I have it here is the entire reason I bought the bag.  In addition I have my 10-18mm wide angle lens, the 18 to 55mm and 75-300mm lenses that came with my Canon T6, and my 1.4 Canon extender for the big telephoto lens.  My wallet fits over top of the longer lens in the side slot, and  additionally I have a spare battery and the bag’s rain bonnet stuffed in there.  There is a second zipper that reveals a large padded laptop and/or iPad pocket, which I can’t imagine the need for carrying either one, but you never know.  There are straps on the side for your tripod, and a side mesh pocket for a bottle of water, or my iPhone if I have on the pocket-less pants I complained about the other day.cameracase

Okay, yes, it’s heavy.  But once it’s on your back the weight is distributed well and actually feels as if it’s supporting your back.  Spoken by a person who has worn this all around the kitchen and is now a total authority on the subject.  I’ll let you know what I think after I wear it to a photo meet up.  Lately I’ve been leaving some of my camera gear in the car when I’m out and about.  It bothers me to do that.  It’s an investment and I’d be heartbroken to lose it.  And since you never know what you’ll discover when you leave the house I’d also be heartbroken to not have the lens I need when I need it.

I’m remembering my love of iPhone photography now, and remembering all the posts I read where people had given up on lugging their photography equipment with them, and they were extolling the virtues of the iPhone camera.  Which is a force to be reckoned with for sure.  But then you spot a baby eagle way up in a tree, across the street and behind a barbed wire fence, plus another distance beyond that, and you just have to take it’s picture.  So you lug the equipment and are happy to do it, just to get that one shot that makes it all worthwhile.

The rest of the story… The bag has been on several outings with me and it’s not too heavy, and it has proven to be fantastic to know that all the lenses are with me.  Literally ‘with’ me, rather than being in the car.  To ride the Clearwater ferry I even had a folded up windbreaker in there, thank goodness.  I can wander at will, and if I get lost I can ask Siri where I parked the car and she’ll get me back there, not to mention giving me directions back home again.  Sometimes it seems that technology is all that is keeping me straight/sane/amused these days…

birds, Cranes, Florida wildlife, live and learn, nature, old dogs new tricks, photography, sunset

Feeling my age…

Wasn’t I just insisting that I didn’t feel my age, my chronological age?  Well, you can forget that because I think I hit the wall.  Maybe it’s just that I thought I was working Tuesday and Wednesday this week, but I was wrong.  I was on the schedule on Monday and had to scramble to get there only 25 minutes late, but it set the course for the day.  I came home and took pictures out back, my only option because I had a class in Clearwater that night, and figured out much too late that I didn’t have the smart card in the camera.  My laptop had been closing applications on me because of a lack of storage space, so I bought a desktop computer and have been in that particular hell of getting everything switched over to a new computer.  It seems like I’ve been swimming upstream this week.  As fun as it is to have a new toy, it has it’s moments.

So I sat in the recliner after work today (Tuesday) and promptly fell asleep.  The dogs got me up just in time to walk them before I had to head out to Hammond’s Creek for the sunset, my only option for photos for the day.  The no-see-ums were out in force, but so was One-Foot Fred.  I was informed that that’s our Great Blue Heron’s name.  I asked what happened to his foot and was told, for the second time, that he lost it due to getting tangled in fishing line.  I don’t know if he hangs out on the bridge all day long, but I’ve seen him now at sunrise and sunset.  Seems he has adapted well to his new reality.  I could take a lesson.2-6iphonefeature2-6onefootfred22-6sunset2-6cheers