I've become a little bit obsessed with kayaking this year. Any chance to get out into nature and check out the wild plant and animal life is a good time to me.
It's an added bonus that kayaking is such a good upper body and core workout. After 5 hours of it this weekend I was pretty sore the next day. All worthwhile to get this close to the beauty of natural things.
"One of life's quiet excitements is to stand somewhat apart from yourself and watch yourself softly becoming the author of something beautiful, even if it is only a floating ash." ~ Norman Maclean
I've been playing around with my new Adobe Photoshop CS5 and man is it powerful.. While I haven't really dove into all it can do (raw image processing, new painting effects, etc) I find just applying some simple filters and actions to some of my favorite subjects to be quite entertaining.
then I decided to try out the "trace contour" filter and look how cool this little artsy application came out. We look like colored pencil cartoons! I was thinking it would be neat to make a little stock card or poster of this one just as a little keepsake / memory of the day.
Next I tried out the "lens correction" filter. Wow. I don't mind telling you I could spend hours playing with this one action. Does that make me a geek girl? probably so! With one drag of the cursor you can manipulate the photo angle in any direction, as if you had changed direction of the actual lens set up.
Now I applied the Photocopy filter to make her look like she was run through the copy machine. Poor Plummy! Next I might take a picture of her backside so I can make it look like she sat her butt on the office copy machine.
Last but not least, here my little Joshie-nephew, adorable as can be. Enjoying his first ever Carvel ice cream cup that auntie got for him (vanilla w/ mixed sprinkles)..I love the way the summer sunset is shining down on his chubby little arms and the side of his face in this shot.
I applied some black and white action to the photo, and then I tweaked the fill and opacity levels so it's not completely b&w, you can still see the light hitting those same angles. I love how it gives the photo a more vintage feel.
There are so many things you can do w/ this program...the possibilities are endless..and I haven't even tapped into any of the 3D stuff yet..ah, but winter is coming,
I am learning how to shoot in Aperture Priority Mode on my Nikon now so you will probably see a lot more pictures forthcoming. It's so much better than auto mode because it gives me creative control over how I want my images to look, specifically over depth of field. And I am just crazy about Bokeh, that's the blurry "out of focus" background that tends to make the main subject pop. I don't know why, I just am.. Next up - fun with shutter speed and ISO settings!!
Nephew Joshua is officially a Curly Kid now!! He is proudly helping Auntie teach the rescues how to leash walk.
Josh is extremely gentle and patient with dogs, a total natural....and at just 19 months old, our youngest Curly Kid thus far. Be still my heart! Be still my heart!
"How does one become a butterfly? she asked pensively. You must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar."
When photographing people and animal subjects, the experts say the first rule of thumb is to focus on the eyes; a lot harder to do than you think, especially without a tripod.
I think this shot of my nephew is my first capture where I succeeded and you can definitely tell the way his eyes pop as the focal point and seem to hypnotize.
In fact this one might be a framer for a Christmas present or 2 this year. I can already see it hanging on the grandparents wall.
That camera is already starting to pay for itself. As for the adorable model, what can I say? Must be good genes.
I set out to shoot cows but they all had their rear ends pointing towards me and they weren't really cooperating. Instead I focused in on this farm near where I live. I used my 70-300MM telephoto lens to take the shot. I was about 800 feet away. I wish the sky was bluer and the building sharper but I thought it was not bad considering I'm new at this.
When I was a kid I pestered my dad one day to buy me this new toy that I really wanted, and after a while he told me this story about how when he was little, he was so poor that his mother couldn't afford to buy him new shoes, so he had to walk to school in the snow with his ratty old shoes tied together with twine. All through my childhood and even my adult life whenever I thought I was going through rough times I always had that image stuck in my head...of my poor father trudging through miles of ice and snow in bare feet just to make it to school....and it always made me feel like I had no business complaining. But the other day when I brought it up in conversation, he laughed (that I even remembered) and he told me that wasn't really true. Clearly he had just concocted the story to make me feel guilty for asking for a new toy.
Anyway, this is the old country schoolhouse built in 1740. It is actually where my father went to school as a little boy. It has been restored on the outside and the historical society gives tours on Sundays. Inside on the walls hang old black and white class photos, my dad is in one of them from the 50's.
Of course it has a slightly different meaning to me now than it did back then....
you can click on the pictures to make them bigger
Rose of Sharon
My Nikon D80 10.2 mega pixels baby.
This marks my first foray into the world of Digital SLR photography. Yay me.
I got a super good deal on ebay with this outfit. It came with a couple lenses, tripod, and all kinds of accouterments. It is used but I figured as a beginner I really don't need to go all out on equipment to get good shots. This is a solid starter kit that I got on the cheap.
The guy who owned the camera before me used it on a trip to Africa and then maybe 5 times more after that. Since then he has stored all the equipment in his gun safe so everything is clean and in minty condition far as I can tell.
Look for some cool pictures once I read through the manuals and figure out how to operate everything. I've already started playing with some telephoto, macro, and portrait shots but the overcast and rainy weather here is making it very difficult to get good results.
I've created a new photography category so you guys can help critique my shots as I am learning.