Monday, April 30, 2012

2012, Day 121 - Oxidized

Yesterday's Portland Google+ Photowalk was a lot of fun.  It was great to meet new people and exciting to see some familiar faces from that last walk.  We had the pleasure of wandering around the NW industrial area and I have already seen a bunch of great photos shared.  This is the first I will share, I think all this is scrap steel as there was an enormous crate of it waiting to be melted down and put to a new and exciting use.  If you look in the shadows there is a little glimpse of turquoise of unoxidized metal.

Canon 1Ds Mark III, Canon 100/f2.8L IS
100mm, f10, 1/100 sec @ 200 ISO

Sunday, April 29, 2012

2012, Day 120 - Goldblum

Today was the second Google+ Photowalk and you would think I would be sharing a photo taken today but this has been a crazy weekend so instead I have loaded those pictures into Lightroom and I am posting a picture I took last night.  With the warm weather there have been all kinds of insects out and I have been giving them a little cryo treatment in order to get a little additional cooperation.  This guy, Mr. Goldblum, was a little more cooperative.  I found him exploring on a lampshade so I put him in a little jar and transported him to my photo table near the studio strobes.

When I took the jar away he very happily groomed himself while I took his closeups.  This isn't even a 100% crop, there is more detail in this photo and I struggled with what to remove from the image.  It could have been a full-body shot but then you wouldn't have been able to appreciate the details.  So after a few attempts I decided I like this head-and-shoulders shot the best :)

Canon 1Ds Mark III, Canon 100/f2.8L IS
100mm, f11, 1/100 sec @ 200 ISO

Saturday, April 28, 2012

2012, Day 119 - Initiation

I had a little bit of a surprise this morning.  My little man Frankie comes from performance lines and sighthounds love to run so with today being the first race meet of the year I had planned on taking him to watch and maybe practice between programs.  With this in mind I though that I didn't need to get to the meet on time until I got a call from Karen, my good friend and Frankie's breeder, saying that he had been entered to race.

Fortunately the dogs had just been walked so I threw Frankie in the car and off we went.  He's not great at traveling, the poor little guy gets car sick and this time was no exception but we made it and for his first time racing he did well.  In the first round he was third out of four; I know it doesn't sound good but in his first official race and the first time running with three other dogs it is about as good as it gets.  He chased the lure and that's what counts.  Frankie's second race didn't go so well, he turned around in the starting box and when get got himself facing the right direction the race was almost over so he just played instead.  Meh, he's only fourteen months old.

Sadly I couldn't stay for the last race because I had to work.  Instead he is spending the rest of the weekend with Karen so he can race tomorrow too.  She called me to tell me that in his last race he did even better, she couldn't remember if he took first or came second but for his first time racing I would consider that a success!

It is odd not having my little white shadow following me around but he was having a great time today and loves his Auntie Karen very much so I know he's going to be fine.  Still, it will be nice to pick him up tomorrow evening, I expect he will be one tired pup.

Oh, and if you're not a regular reader this isn't Frankie, it's his cousin Garis...

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 70-200/f2.8L IS Mark II
200mm, f4, 1/2500 sec @ 500 ISO

Friday, April 27, 2012

2012, Day 118 - Stanchions

The dogwoods are in bloom, some trees are in full bloom and others have not yet reached their peak.  This example comes from my neighbors yard and I am told that it is an uncommon variety with its origins in Japan.  Some years I have seen people having their pictures taken with with this remarkable tree.  I love the texture of the petals and the ribs that travel their length lending them strength and a certain aesthetic appeal.

Canon 1Ds Mark III, Canon 100/f2.8L IS
100mm, f11, 1/100 sec @ 200 ISO

Thursday, April 26, 2012

2012, Day 117 - Corrugated

More grunge from yesterday's scouting captured in a brief break from the rain.  I decided to play up the textures and used OnOne's Perfect Effects 3 by applying the Brocade and Tea Stained filters.  Then a little selective focus and levels adjustments.  Sometimes strong lines and texture is all you need for an interesting photograph.

Canon 1Ds Mark III, Canon 16-35/f2.8L Mark II
35mm, f4, 0.6 sec @ 200 ISO

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

2012, Day 116 - Crevice

While scouting for the best meeting point for the photowalk this weekend my cohort and I stopped a few times to take pictures.  There were lots of possibilities but it seemed like every time I found something I like the evening's rain got a little heavier.  When wielding a wide angle lens it is difficult to keep droplets off the front element and at small apertures they show up.  It was a little frustrating but as I was making my way back to my car I found these little ferns growing the the mortar between the brick and with the direction of the wind it was dry!

This is what Brian Matiash calls minutia and I love it.  They're the metaphorical pot of gold at the end of the photographic rainbow; you don't really expect to find something so interesting and exciting so when you do it just makes your day.  These delicate ferns are growing in an area of heavy industry where, if they don't impede utility, they are left alone.

Canon 1Ds Mark III, Canon 16-35/f2.8L Mark II
35mm, f4, 1 sec @ 200 ISO

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

2012, Day 115 - Archive

I am sure that I am not only only photo nerd to keep an archive of cloud photos.  They come in handy when you have a blown out sky that needs a little visual interest.  It is something I rarely do, composite two different images to create one finished photograph, it tends to seem like cheating to me.  Admittedly I will often bracket a scene to capture extra details but it is a photograph of the same subject just with different exposures and doesn't offend my sense of fairness.

Rarely do I share cloud photos, it gets boring, but last night I was out in the country and I couldn't resist sharing this one.  Behind me the sky was filled with roiling black clouds broken by the random flash of lightning and a rumble of thunder.  I love the colors and the texture in these clouds.  Sadly they probably won't end up being part of another image so I felt the need to share it now.

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 24/f1.4L Mark II
24mm, f5.6, 1/125 sec @ 320 ISO

Monday, April 23, 2012

2012, Day 114 - Magic

The warm weather yesterday was all that I needed to pack my camera and head out the door.  I was joined by my friend Julie Ward in a trip to Silver Falls State Park and this time we were going late in the day in order not only to avoid potential crowding but to try to capture a different light.  Unfortunately we were  meant to be four but Brian Matiash and Nicole Young were unable to come at the last minute but I thought I would mention them in order to instill jealousy.

Every time I visit Silver Falls it is a magical experience.  The woods are special, they always look perfect in an almost artificial way.  As I stood under the falls the rush of water drowns out all the other sounds and you can concentrate on your other senses.  The trail is damp and the slight mineral smell of the rocks mingles with the sweetness of the evergreens.  While waiting for my brackets to completely I light mist collected on my skin and the occasional drop of water would land on me.  It was a warm day yesterday, in the eighties, and while it was a little cooler in the woods there was a light refreshing breeze that would tickle your damp skin.  But what is more remarkable is the view.  I almost expect nymphs to emerge from behind the trees but it is hard to be disappointed that they don't because you're still surrounded by a visual feast.

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 16-35/f2.8L Mark II
16mm, f16, merged layers of 8 and 15 sec @ 100 ISO

Sunday, April 22, 2012

2012, Day 113 - Unfurling

Life abounds this time of year and the hostas are really coming into their own.  As long as the slugs can be kept at bay they flourish in the Pacific NW and make our gardens look lush with their large rich foliage.  The hostas in my garden have yet to make an appearance but I am sure their silvery green leaves with soon be pushing through the mulch.  Maybe tomorrow I will bait my beer traps, slugs are lushes and will drink themselves to death...

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 100/f2.8L IS
100mm, f5.6, 1/250 sec @ 500 ISO

Saturday, April 21, 2012

2012, Day 112 - iBugg

The sun came out today and was I was walking out the door I discovered a friend on the window sill.  As I was making a desperate attempt to be productive I made use of the camera closest to me which happened to be my iPhone.  I fired up my favorite app and this is the result.  I exported it to Photoshop just touch up the colors and add a little bit of sharpening but otherwise it is straight out of the camera, err, phone.  The camera on the latest iPhone is admittedly impressive.

iPhone 4S
4.28mm, f2.4, 1/240 sec @ 64 ISO

Friday, April 20, 2012

2012, Day 111 - Repose

My crazy boy Hubert is getting gray.  He wasn't quite two years old when he came home, he was practically a puppy and had a lot of puppy personality traits.  Now he is nearing his fifth birthday and although he still acts like a puppy my sweet Hubert is starting to show the physical signs of maturity.  It is such an odd juxtaposition.

Canon 1Ds Mark II, Sigma 50/f1.4EX
50mm, f2.8, 1/25 sec @ 400 ISO

Thursday, April 19, 2012

2012, Day 110 - Heat

It's all a lie, there is no heat in Portland, it is still cold and I got completely soaked twice today.  When I say soaked I really mean it, down to my socks!  But between the downpours I took a moment to appreciate the early arrival of this poppy in my neighbor's yard.  Although the weather is cool these colors make me feel warm and the warmth makes me happy.  It's nice way to end the day, happy...

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 100/f2.8L IS
100mm, f11, 1/160 sec @ 320 ISO

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

2012, Day 109 - Close

There is an elegant to a single perfect flower, in isolation there are no distractions and one can appreciate its graceful form.  Conversely when flowers are densely clustered details are obscured but they convey a feeling of bounty.  Beauty in quantity is a spectacle so when it happens we should take a moment to appreciate our good fortune.  In between rain showers this afternoon I was treated to such good fortune and the rest of the day has seemed so much better for it.

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 100/f2.8L IS
100mm, f5.6, 1/400 sec @ 500 ISO

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

2012, Day 108 - Visitation

It's tax day so this morning I went to the post office to drop my taxes in the mail and on the way home I had my own little macro walk.  As I happened upon some pretty white flower and started to compose my picture a little head emerged so I waited until more of my little friend's body came into view and took this photograph.  It was one of life's happy little accidents and I thought I would share it with everyone this evening.

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 100/f2.8L IS
100mm, f5.6, 1/200 sec @ 320 ISO

Monday, April 16, 2012

2012, Day 107 - Isolation

The great thing about lighting is that you can use it to highlight your intended subject drawing the eye away from distractions and showing the subject in the most flattering way possible.  If I didn't tell you would you have known that this magnolia blossom was cut from the tree and clamped to a chair in my living room?  What you don't see in the background is a cabinet, an oriental rug, four dogs, my dining room table and an assortment of other household items.  Thanks to my strobes at this exposure they are completely hidden in the shadows.  Lighting is one of those technical parts of photography that you learn through trial and error; when it goes well it is magical and when it goes awry nothing can be salvaged.

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 100/f2.8L IS
100mm, f16, 1/160 sec @ 200 ISO

Sunday, April 15, 2012

2012, Day 106 - Storage

Esco has a large operation in NW Portland, I have no idea what the scope of their operation is here but their compound is about eight square block and the air is heavy with the smell of molten steel.  This appears to be one of their stock yards and even after dark their operations continue.  I like the light and shadow in this picture, the obvious brightness indoors compared to the darkness outdoors.  The shadows and reflections add visual interest as well.

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 16-35/f2.8L Mark II
35mm, f5.6, merged layers of 1/2 and 2 sec @ 400 ISO

Saturday, April 14, 2012

2012, Day 105 - All roads lead

Yes, the Fremont Bridge rears its head again!  It seems that you can't avoid getting a glimpse of that bridge from all over Portland.  Not that I'm complaining, it is a nice piece of engineering and it certainly adds to the skyline.

This shot was taken earlier this week in the rain in the NW industrial area.  The weather was memorable because although it was wet it was not at all cold.  In fact I unzipped my jacket to cool off a little bit.  These tracks are obviously no longer in use but they lead to the Montgomery Park building which was probably a very helpful feature when it was a mail order warehouse for Montgomery Ward.

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 16-35/f2.8L Mark II
35mm, f5.6, merged layers of 2.5 and 5 sec @ 400 ISO

Friday, April 13, 2012

2012, Day 104 - Midnight in the garden

This is the face of good and evil.  Yes, it's my boy Frankie!  Most of the time he is a good boy, as you would expect looking at that angelic face.  In fact he is good whenever I'm at home but when I leave the little man sprouts horns.  All day long I feed him whenever he wants but when I leave he tries to forage for food under the blankets on my bed, in the trash, on the counter, in the back yard, anywhere but in his dish which I fill and put out before I leave the house.  But I am learning my lesson and the garbage cans are secured and the counters are cleared.  I learned my lesson about the counter the hard way when Frankie devoured a stick of butter which lubricated his digestive tract very thoroughly and took almost two days to run its course.  The bed, well, if he wants to play with the blankets he may because I like finding his warm indention in it when I come home.

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 100/f2.8L IS
100mm, f16, 1/160 sec @ 200 ISO

Thursday, April 12, 2012

2012, Day 103 - Dissection

My star magnolias are pretty much gone and the tree is leafing out now but larger magnolias are just now at their peak.  This specimen came from my neighbor's tree, one of hundreds of blossoms.  My favorite part of these grand flowers is the interior structures so I took a scalpel and cut away some of the leaves in order to expose the interior.  Once done I added a little light and this is the result.

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 100/f2.8L IS
100mm, f16, 1/160 sec @ 200 ISO

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

2012, Day 102 - Unit B

Last night's walk was blessed with some light rain.  It's annoying to have to constantly clean your lens of water droplets but it creates wonderful reflections.  And, fortunately, it was warm despite the rain so it was quite a nice evening to be wandering around Portland's heavy industrial neighborhoods.

It was a feast for the senses.  The sounds of cars, diesel engines, and dripping water punctuated by the loud clang of metal on metal the the nearby foundry provided a backdrop.  The air was heavy with the acrid smell of hot metal and wet pavement that was cut with random breezes of cool air.  It was almost sticky with humidity and the Three Amigos, Brian Bonham, Lars Gustafson, and I wandered with wonder.  We had no real plan and I often referenced the map on my phone at intersections to find the route.  Freeform living is refreshing...

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 16-35/f2.8L Mark II
27mm, f5.6, 1.3 sec @ 400 ISO

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

2012, Day 101 - S-bend

This evening I had the pleasure of meeting up with Brian Bonham and Lars Gustafson for a little impromptu photo walk.  We wandered around the industrial areas of northwest Portland.  I rarely make my way up there and never really on foot so it was truly an adventure.  Our start was slow but as we made our way further into the areas of heavy industry we found all sorts of photographic treasures.  As we made our way back to our starting point and vehicles I stopped to take this photograph of Highway 30.  Post processing courtesy of Nik's Color Efex, Silver Efex, and OnOne's Focal Point.

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 16-35/f2.8L Mark II
25mm, f16, 20 sec @ 200 ISO

Monday, April 9, 2012

2012, Day 100 - Release

This photo was taken on my last trip to Thailand.  My friends and I had a late return into Chiang Mai and went almost immediately to dinner.  As it common the temperature dropped a few degrees as night fell so we decided to go for a bit of a walk.  The air was heavy with the sweet scent of the plumeria mingled with the occasional waft of incense.  As we wandered the streets of Chiang Mai's old city we saw a sky lantern rise gently towards the stars before getting caught on a slight breeze and setting off into the distance.

Energized by the sight we quickly made out way to its point of origin and came upon Wat Jediluang.  There we found s few people waiting for the hot air to collect into the lantern before releasing it to the heavens.  These young monks were testing the air to see if enough had collected to carry their lantern away and moments after taking their picture it was drifting lazily into the sky.  Some nights are just magical and this is one that I will never forget.

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 24/f1.4L Mark II
24mm, f1.4, 1/125 sec @ 1000 ISO

Sunday, April 8, 2012

2012, Day 99 - Tagging

This evening my friends and I cooked dinner at our favorite homeless shelter.  It's a great place that given career training and advice so long as they remain sober.  Most men who leave do so with a job and housing and there is a waiting list for a place in the program.  It's always a lot of fun and kind of neat to see how quickly a group of people can put together a differ to feed almost a hundred hungry guys.

After we finished serving dinner and congratulating ourselves on another triumph I took the long way home through Portlands east side industrial area.  The clouds broke for a little bit, just long enough for me to get a few pictures, before they closed ranks again.  It was a really nice way to end the day.

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 16-35/f2.8L Mark II
16mm, merged layers of 1/200, 1/25, and 1/13 sec @ 200 ISO

Saturday, April 7, 2012

2012, Day 98 - Dirty bits

Okay, I admit it, I'm a flower perv.  I like the look of flower junk.  Although I have no idea what kind of flower this is it caught my eye as I was walking by but it wasn't the violet color that I noticed but what looked like golden barley in its' center.  It's dirty but I like it...

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 100/f2.8L IS
100mm, f5.6, 1/40 sec @ 200 ISO

Friday, April 6, 2012

2012, Day 97 - Purity

It's odd, some of the camellias are just reaching their peak while others bloomed weeks ago and all that remains is their discolored petals on the ground decaying into the ground.  This particular flower stood out because there was a gap in the foliage behind it so it was more easily isolated.  I love the unblemished petals and almost perfect form, I walked around the bush twice in search of the perfect flower and while there are others I liked this the best; when you have a static subject you can take your time.

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 100/f2.8L IS
100mm, f5.6, 1/250 sec @ 320 ISO

Thursday, April 5, 2012

2012, Day 96 - Oyster

This photo is from my Saturday adventuring with Brian Matiash around the remaining industrial areas of northwest Portland.  Although the Pearl district has been expanding the boom that brought it from a seedy area of drug users and heavy industry into a yuppy haven has come to a near standstill.  It grew quickly and values climbed even faster but some of the veneer is cracking.  To my mind that isn't a bad thing, it isn't want Portland wants to be really, the Pearl is inhabited by people with money but without imagination, the eat and shop at chains instead of patronizing local business because the thought of something new and unfamiliar is unsettling to them and most the the establishments in their neighborhood need corporate backing to afford the absurd rents.  Who would have thought that there was such a thing as a yuppy ghetto?  Fortunately they are still hemmed in by the river and an impenetrable wall of industry that the city is dead set on preserving.  So as they some and go from their condos of glass and concrete in the luxury of their German cars the rest of us feel fortunate that they aren't brave enough to invade our neighborhoods and drive prices up and local businesses out.  The Pearl may be the most apt description imaginable because it is a pretty little thing with more shine than substance encased in an exterior that is rather unpleasant to most but what the pearl doesn't understand is that the shell is there for our protection as much as its own.

Canon 1Ds Mark II, Canon 16-35/f2.8L Mark II
35mm, f11, 1/200 sec @ 200 ISO

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

2012, Day 95 - High key

Clematis are an amazing family of climbing vines.  Their flowers and colors are so varied and while they are a mainstay in gardens throughout the world their roots are in Asia.  It's funny how some things become so commonplace that we forget about their origins.

It was a cold wet day today and although you can't tell by this photo it was taken in the rain.  I deliberately overexposed this photo first because all that white tricks the camera's meter but also because I wanted something a little more high key.  The important details are intact although some highlights are a little blown out but the effect is what I wanted.

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 100/f2.8L IS
100mm, f5.6, 1/125 sec @ 320 ISO

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

2012, Day 94 - Sunset robbery

Tonight's photo was taken last night with Brian Matiash along Portland's scenic waterfront.  The skies were so rich and the colors vibrant but playing with the photos for a while I decided to see what it would look like in black and white.  I was so pleased with the results that I didn't mind losing the color in the sky because there is more than enough texture to make up for its absence.  In this case less is more and I am quite taken with the results.

Canon 1D Mark IV, Sigma 50/f1.4EX
50mm, f8, HDR of 1/250, 1/125, 1/60, 1/30, and 1/15 sec @ 200 ISO

Monday, April 2, 2012

2012, Day 93 - Dreaming

Today we had a respite from the rain, temperatures reached the sixties and we had a beautiful sunset.  I had to take advantage of the good weather, I knew I would be kicking myself if I stayed in this evening.  Given the conditions I tried another timelapse, the video hasn't processed yet but I am hopeful.  As the evening's shooting was coming to an end I saw this plane in the sky against the evening clouds.

It has been over a year since I traveled seriously and I am itching to pack my bags.  Unfortunately times are still a bit tight so as I processed this photograph I thought about all the places I want to go.  Central America is high on my list, a number of friends have been to Cambodia in recent years and spoke highly of their experiences, and I've never made it to Europe though I am undecided as to where I would like to go but I have been toying with the idea of Christmas in Spain.  There are just so many possibilities and that's what dreaming is about...

Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon 100/f2.8L IS
100mm, f2.8, 1/5000 sec @ 800 ISO

Sunday, April 1, 2012

2012, Day 92 - Tears of a flower

Ugh, another day of wet weather.  It could be worse and I should be grateful that the worst weather here don't flatten neighborhoods or lead to the earth opening up to swallow me whole.  The upshot to all of our wet weather is that our gardens flourish and there are flowers everywhere.  Maybe that's why I take so many pictures of flowers, to remind me why it is worth getting wet all winter long...

Canon 1Ds Mark II, Canon 100/f2.8L IS
100mm, f5.6, 1/160 sec @ 200 ISO