Thursday, March 31, 2011

Day 455 - Bloomin' trees

ISO 100, 47mm, f/16, 1/20 sec

I drove by the capitol mall today to check out the cherry trees and they were in full bloom. I didn't have my tripod in the car, so I did my best hand held.

Former Governor Charles Sprague bequest $100,000 to build a fountain at the north end of the capitol mall.

The fountain itself is 20' high X 29' wide X 85' long and was built in 1980.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Day 454 - Portland

ISO 100, 70mm, f/32m, 25.0 sec

I took this nearly a month ago.

This sign is without a doubt, one of Portland's icons. It lives on the west side of the Burnside Bridge, but it wasn't until tonight that I knew the history of the sign.

It was erected in 1940 for White Satin Sugar. In 1950, the outline of Oregon was animated to fill up with white sugar.

White Stag Sportswear bought the sign in the late '50s changed the name to White Stag Sportswear with the deer on top. I remember that sign. In 1977 it became designated as a historic landmark. White Stag moved out of Portland leaving the sign. The expense of maintaining the sign and paying the electric bill was a source for debate almost to a point of taking the sign down.

In 1997 the name White Stag name was changed to Made in Oregon and Sportswear was changed to Old Town, but the debates continued. After a threat to dismantle the sign in 2009, the city of Portland agreed to pay the sign company $2,000 a month for maintenance and electricity, and in 2010 money was donated to change the lettering to Portland, Oregon.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Day 453 - Dancing in the breeze

ISO 100, 100mm macro, f/32, 1/60 sec.

A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze. 

Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line

William Wadsworth
I plucked one of our daffodils from the untended garden this evening.

Rain and daffodils, a picture of my world.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Day 452 - Promise of spring

ISO 100, 280mm, f/4.0, 1/200 sec

This robin patiently perched for me the other day when we were out at the Tualatin River Wildlife Refuge.

I for one have always had a soft spot for robins.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Day 451 - Vintage memory

This week's assignment for Project 52 was a macro of electronics using light and specular and shadow and reflection.

Not so easy and totally frustrating.

This is a memory board from a Mac Portable, circa 1990. I used a two light set-up. One speedlight camera right and behind the board with a blue gel, second speedlight is camera left and in front with an orange gel.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Day 450 - Working dog

ISO 100, 90mm, f/10, 1/400 sec

Mickey drew the lucky straw today when the emergency vet called and needed another blood donation.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Day 449 - Country roads

ISO 100, 70mm, f/18, 1/125 sec

During the sun break today we made a mad dash out to Dallas. I broke the filter for my 24-105mm lens and had to replace it.

On the drive back, we took the long way home turning here and then there. I have no clue where I was when I took this. I drove past and about a mile later turned around realizing I might regret my decision not to stop.

During the drive by I didn't realize that there was standing water to reflect in. Bonus round!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Day 448 - Ducks and Beavers

 ISO 200, 280mm, f/4.0, 1/200 sec

If you know anything at all about Oregon, you know that the state is ruled by ducks and beavers. Pick a side and proudly wear your colors. Nothing else matters.

Today we had an hour of zero precipitation. A totally novel concept.

We made our way up to the Tualatin River Wildlife Refuge. Most of the refuge is still closed for the season, but the walk we took was beautiful.

ISO 100, 210mm, f/5.6, 1/200 sec

This pond was covered in tiny red flowers. I'm guessing they must be some form of algae.

From the looks of this tree, the beavers have been busy and the ducks are just hanging out, stretching after their nap.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Day 447 - Full Circle

ISO 100, 55mm, f/22, 1/60 sec.

The rains have returned and I spent some quality time with the crystal ball. This is the
nottagreen-thumb orchid that now has two blossoms on it.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Day 446 - Look ma, no rain

ISO 100, 31mm, f/16, 30 sec
Ohhhhh, I went out in the twilight tonight. It was fabulous, what can I say. The river was perfect. We've had so much rain I had almost forgotten the feeling.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Day 445 - Up mommy, up

ISO 1250, 35mm, f/2.8, 1/80 sec
We had visitors in the office today. This is five year old Cookie and she had to be just about the cutest little pup ever.

Now I would never accuse a doggie of being spoiled, but with her pink and gray sweater and her little pink petticoat coupled with her demand to be held, I think this little girl is very much loved by her mom.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Day 444 - Flight

ISO 100, 200mm, f/8.0, 1/200 sec

Another from yesterday at the coast. I really like seagulls and there is something very special about a seagull in flight at the ocean.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Day 443 - High tide

 ISO 100, 120mm, f/10, 1/200 sec.

Thanks to the full moon, the high tide promised to be fabulous today. I watched the weather at the coast closely, double-checked the early high tide and at 9 am we decided all systems were go.

We arrived at Boiler Bay about an hour before high tide. Even the seagulls were watching the event.

 ISO 100, 168mm, f/11, 1/400 sec.

The waves were amazing. I don't think I have ever seen them roll in like they did.

 ISO 100, 70mm, f/11, 1/400 sec.

The wave action against the rock was something else to watch. The sound the waves made as they were rolling in was as big as the crash.

This week's assignment for the Project 52 is "Power". Don't think it gets much more powerful than this.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Day 442 - Oldtimers

  ISO 1600, 140mm, f/2.8, 1/200 sec

Simply by accident, I found out today that Chemeketa was hosting the Oldtime Fiddlers contest. When Terry told me, my eyes lit up like a Christmas tree and I was prepared to beg to take pictures.

ISO 1600, f/2.8, 1/160 sec

Terry directed me to the jam session. What a hoot.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Day 441 - The calm

ISO 200, 55mm, f/9.0, 1/100 sec

Look ma, no rain! We still have standing water, but there wasn't any rain adding to it today.
Woo hoo!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Day 440 - Wetland

ISO 100, 200mm, f/2.8, 1/200 sec

And the rain continues.

This little toy tractor rests out in one of the gardens. I have never seen seen standing water in that garden and I have lived here nearly 10 years now.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Day 439 - Portrait of Tye

ISO 100, 125mm, f/13, 1/160 sec: one light, camera left side—soft box

ISO 100, 100mm, f/13, 1/160 sec: two lights, camera left side—soft box,  camera right—hard

ISO 100, 150mm, f/13, 1/160 sec: three lights, camera left front—soft box, camera left rear—hard, camera right rear—hard

ISO 100, 70mm, f/13, 1/160 sec: four lights, camera left front—soft box, camera left rear—hard, camera right rear—hard, camera right rear—ground

The final project for portrait photography. Woo hoo!

Tye is one of the sophomore basketball players. I wish I could say I have watched him play for both years, but I admit, my interest in basketball did not peak until I went to shoot it for the first time.

When I asked the coach if I could take his portrait, he was more than agreeable, they are very good to me. Tye and I scheduled a time for 9 am this morning... I never took into account the fact that he was 19 and finished with finals.

I had to laugh when I looked at my phone and discovered that he had left me a text this morning  at 3 am asking if we could do the photos at 10:30 instead of 9. I was already set up and ready to go. So the coaches and I made idle chit chat waiting for Mr. Sunshine to rise and shine.

Totally worth the wait.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Day 438 - Portrait of Karen

 ISO 100, 90mm, f/14, 1/160 sec

Tomorrow I will shoot my final images for my portrait class. 

My assignment is to shoot four portraits, starting with one light working up to four. I won't lie, I have been in panic mode. Lighting has been a total crap shoot for me. Light, shoot, crap. Repeat.
That is, until David Hobby spent a little quality time breaking it down for me on the Flash Bus Tour.

I am meeting with one of the basketball players in the morning and Karen graciously sat for me tonight as I walked through the steps.

Woman, you rock! Thank you for helping through Lighting Confidence 101.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Day 437 - Broken strings

ISO 100, 100mm macro, f/32, 30.0 sec
I spent my childhood hidden behind a violin. I played in my first year of college and decided it was time to do something different.

It only made sense that my daughters would pick one up as well, but they both quit once they entered high school. This violin went into storage and when I went to retrieve it for the Project 52 assignment, I opened the case only to discover that all of the glue had disintegrated in the Pacific NW humidity.

A sad day to say the least, this violin belonged to my great uncle in Colorado. It had been around for years and years.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Day 436 - Phantom of the Flash Bus

ISO 3200, 200mm, f/2.8, 1/200 sec

The Flash Bus tour was in Portland today and to say the least, it was fabulous.

David Hobby and Joe McNally started their day with the breakfast of champions and they were wired for sound. It was learning with laughter all day long.

David Hobby started the day, he never picked up his camera, but he connected so many dots for me this morning.

His technique for teaching lighting with layers was awesome.

Joe McNally took the second half of the day demonstrating behind the camera. As always, an inspiration.

If they are coming to your area and aren't sold out, I highly recommend signing up.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Day 435 - Self help

ISO 100, 92mm, f/10, 1/160 sec
A good friend of mine is the editor to her company magazine and had enough faith in my photography ability to throw me a bone. Thanks Melaney!

Excitement and fear riveted through my body for most of the morning. I had a dog in the vet clinic for a dental and the basement flooded, but I knew today was not the day to get wigged out by stuff outta my control. 

I did what every good photographer would do. I left work an hour earlier than planned and went home, set up my lighting and cranked out self-portraits, 55 to be exact.

I'm not totally thrilled with the results, but it was quite a relaxing exercise, I recommend it.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Day 434 - Here comes the fog

ISO 100, 27mm, f/18, 30.0 sec
The fog was just starting to roll in as I snapped my final shot of the evening.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Day 433 - Just yesterday

ISO 100, 200mm, f/4.0, 1/200 sec

It seems like just yesterday that I was looking at the leaves that were turning yellow. Overnight, the flowers began to bloom.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Day 432 - The pitch, the catch, the hit

ISO 1000, 200mm, f/5.6, 1/1000 sec

If someone would have told me two years ago that I would enjoy sports photography, I would have assured them that they were out of their minds.

Today was the first home game of the season for the college baseball team and I found myself watching the clock and, watching the skies to make sure the game was not going to be rained out.

ISO 800, 168mm, f/5.0, 1/1000 sec

I have to admit that it is a little un-nerving knowing that the ball can go anywhere it wants to (it is so much more contained in basketball). I stepped just inside of the fence to shoot and my beloved 70-200mm lens felt so vulnerable.

ISO 800, 168mm, f/6.3, 1/1000 sec

But what a high anticipating the crack of the bat against ball... and I only stayed for the first inning.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Day 431 - Looking into the future

ISO 200, 24mm, f/10, 5.0 sec

My final project for the portrait photography class was another self-portrait.

Jeremy Cowart gets 85% of the credit for this set-up. When he did his week-end class for Creative Live, this was one of his experimental portraits and I loved it so much, I wanted to do something similar.

The light behind me is a rope light that I had Karen spin. I set up my hot shoe flash just in front of the crystal ball. All of the light on my hands and face is reflected from the ball.

The rope lights cost $30, the crystal $50, finding the crystal ball... a bit more of a challenge.

Setting this up took about 15 minutes and it 24 images to find the settings.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Day 430 - Save me

ISO 100, 200mm, f/2.8, 1/80

Next time I get a wild hair up my ass to take a four credit course, I hope somebody knocks me up the side of the head.

They call it a term paper because you are supposed to work on it the entire term, not the week-end before it is due.

Rapidly swirling down the drain here.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Day 429 - Sunset in the city

ISO 100, 23mm, f/22, 1.6 sec

Since Karen was craving Ethiopian again today, I got to spend some more time on the Esplanade.

I was in high hopes for a more vivid sunset, I guess this will just have to do.

Those clouds were full of little raindrops.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Day 429 - Welcome back Barney

ISO 400, 58mm, f/4.0, 1/50 sec

This is Barney. We fostered him six years ago and he is a wonderful greyhound. About a month ago, we got an e-mail from his family saying they were moving out of state and wouldn't be able to take him with them.

We welcomed him back with open paws. He just turned 12 in December. He doesn't act a day older that the last time he was here.

What a hound dog.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Day 427 - Last home game

ISO 2500, 120mm, f/3.5, 1/800 sec

Friday night was the last home game for this year's basketball season.

When I ran into the coach, he suggested I shoot from high to low rather than low to high. It isn't as easy as it sounds.

None the less, I still really enjoyed shooting basketball.

The team is on their way to the playoffs this week-end. Go Chemeketa Storm.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Day 426 - Portrait of Terry

ISO 400, 145mm, f/2.8mm, 1/200 sec.

I work with Terry at the college. He's a theater kinda guy and probably one of the nicest men I know. I suspect if you needed the shirt off of his back, he would have it off and give it to you before you had to ask.

He was in need of a head shot for a position he is running for on campus. The request I got last week asked if I would take a head shot because "So far the photos taken do not reflect the friendly Terry that we know and love."

Oh boy, not that there was any pressure there.  When he wandered into my office today, I took him to the best place I knew on campus in the pouring rain and told him to look evil. Hmmm, I'm not so afraid of him now.

David duChemin had a wonderful post last week about waiting for the soul. I know that I tend to hurry through to avoid my own awkwardness and move on. I at least have this post bouncing around somewhere in my brain now.

When the lighting just wasn't right for the first pose, I didn't hedge at all when I turned Terry just a tiche, backed up and went again. I was so glad I did because when I look at this portrait, I see the wonderful Terry that I have grown to love and enjoy over the years.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Day 425 Too many to count

ISO 400, 100mm macro, f/32, 1/40 sec

I have  a confession, I don't have a green thumb. It's not that I don't love flowers and plants, I do. They just require so much TLC, like water.

A year ago, Karen brought home this orchid for me to shoot as one of my daily photos. It was really beautiful, but secretly I rolled my eyes thinking, yup, it's a goner.

A few times I actually remembered to water it during the year. Tonight, I saw the first bloom. It was shocking I tell you.

It called out to be water dropped.

Count those drops, I double-dare you.