Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A growing infatuation with donkeys

Something about them is drawing me to them. It started when I was in Morocco. I got so excited seeing them, and they were everywhere! I have several dozen pictures of them - working, hanging out. In the towns, in the countryside. I even have one of the pictures hanging right next to my desk.

In Santa Fe we found this alley, I love this guy.


And a little further down the alley, this.... ;)


Monday, October 20, 2014

New Mexico church

The last post I mentioned how much I enjoy just pulling over unexpectedly when we see something interesting. Not too terribly far awat from the Camel Rock (and hour or so-ish maybe) we spotted this church right next to the little highway we were on. Love the split second decision we made to stop, not sure the people behind us did though ;)

There's no one around, and it's securely situated behind 5 foot fences on native land, so we're not going on the property, just shooting from the road. Even still, we had a man in a pick up pull over and just watch us while we were shooting. I felt badly that he thought we needed watching, but I understand.

Anyhow, isn't it beautiful? And can't you just imagine photos of it during the early morning hours with maybe a little soft mist or light fog. Or maybe hot, fiery skies at sunset?

  




These were taken somewhere along the "high road" from Santa Fe to Taos. I took notes along the way, but they're so cryptic now I can't figure out where we were here :/ Jen, if you read this and remember would you let me know please!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Not a landscape photographer

One of the things I've wanted to improve upon is landscape photography. However I've come to the realization that for now, it's not important enough to me to get up early - stay up all night....hoping that I'll find that perfect spot and get just the right light. And, since that's the key, most of my travel/scenery pictures are just that, pictures. I'm ok with that....for now. Maybe someday I'll change my mindset ;)

A pull back of the house I posted the other day. Cerrillos, NM was a tiny town with unpaved dirt roads and with very few people even visible. I'm sure we stuck out like sore thumbs, two out-of-place women wandering around with our cameras. I would have loved to see the inside of this house!



Leaving Santa Fe for Taos we spotted the Camel Rock and of course had turn around and circle back and wander around for a while. Access was limited, but isn't this cool?




Monday, October 13, 2014

Dusting off the blog

Well, I'm surprised at myself, I've decided to start up my blog again after over 2 years...YEARS of neglect!

I started the blog in 2007 (has it been that long) to keep track of myself photography wise, really when I started working on macro photography. Then it became a place to post some of the portrait sessions I did over several years. When I decided that I wanted to let the business part of photography go I didn't really have a focus photography wise, so the blog languished. I'm not sure if I have a focus now, but here I go ;)

So, I'll start with current(ish). Some photos from a trip last month to New Mexico. I'm all over the place with my editing style, and having fun playing. So...if the images don't "go together" it's because I had a different vision for each.

Last month I spent 2 weeks visiting Jen and family in Denver. During that time she and I took off for 5 days to New Mexico. I've never been before, and it's been on my list for a LONG time! I'm so glad we went. One day Jen and I decided to drive the part of the Turquoise Trail from Santa Fe to Albuquerque. We stopped where we wanted, spending as much time as we liked at each stop. These photos are all from a small town called CERRILLOS. And when I say small, I mean small ;)

As you drive into the town.....my new(used) 70-200 got a workout on this image!


Thought it would be fun to try for an old-time look to this. Successful? Or not so much?






 As we were driving out Jen spotted this door. One thing I loved about NM was all the adobe with blue doors/window frames/trim/accents. At first I was disappointed there was nothing planted in the pot. Now I kind of like it.....

Friday, July 13, 2012

Lauren and Jen's Excellent Adventure - Drayton Hall

Yes, I know....I'm a little slow in getting to these. My initial intention was to be finished weeks ago, but...not so much. There are a LOT of photos to get through.

So, this is a continuation of our first day "in" Charleston. In the morning we visited Middleton Place, and in the afternoon we visited DRAYTON HALL. It was one of my favorite places from the trip. What I love about this plantation is that it is preserved (not restored) from the date the Trust received it from the Drayton Family in 1974. Yes, of course there were updates up until 1974 to make it liveable, but it hasn't been changed since then. There was never a modern kitchen installed, nor central heating, electricity, or running water. We did go on a house tour with a guide, and I found it all fascinating!

We drove onto the grounds and I almost immediately slammed on the brakes so I could photograph this guy greeting us. He was pretty non-plussed about it all.

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I borrowed Jen's fish-eye for this shot:

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I took a ton of details shots, but I won't bore you with them all. However, isn't the woodwork incredible?

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Monday, July 9, 2012

My other hobby. Ok....obsession

Making these wrapped cord bracelets is such a relaxing way to spend some time. I've been beading for a couple of years now....but so far these have been my favorite thing to make. I must have a dozen of them (or more) now....pretty much one to go with just about any outfit.

So I don't really need more, but I can't stop ;) Brett says I should start selling them...LOL. However, I not sure that I want to turn a hobby into a job. I did that once before with photography!

Anyhow, here are a few of the most recent ones I've made. These square beads (called Tila) are new to me, and I really like the look a lot!

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This one I made with just random beads left over from other projects. It doesn't "sit up" nicely for photographs, but it looks good on, trust me ;)

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Love this one, so light and bright...perfect for the summer!

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Another made with leftover beads of varying sizes. I'm not a huge fan of the button I used though, so I may end up taking it apart and redoing it with a different button:

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I get compliments on this one nearly every time I wear it. It's subtle, but I sprinkled in a few Swarovski crystals here and there to give it just a little sparkle:

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I adore these stones. I can't recall what they are, but they are so pretty in real life!

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Ok, last one ;)

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Monday, June 25, 2012

JUNE!

I just love this month because there is so much in bloom. Bummer is that it's been terribly rainy and breezy (not to mention just flat out WINDY at times) this year. I made a trip out to the botanical garden a few evenings ago, but the wind foiled most of my shooting.

Ahhhhh, stationary objects!

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This city girl gets so excited when she sees any sort of critter, even little rabbits:

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I managed to get a few things in focus in the breeze. Really, is there any better backdrop than nature? Look at the beautiful bokeh in this:

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Friday, June 22, 2012

Ketchup and Mustard

This rose is a new addition to our garden this year, I just love the name...it's so appropriate. As a bud, the outside of the petals are mustard yellow with a little ketchup on the edges. When it opens the inside of the flower is just as interesting. Ketchup, with mustard in the center. Cool, yes?

Shot with the 200mm macro, tripod mounted, manually focused, F36 at 6/10 of a second.

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Thursday, June 21, 2012

YUM!

The advantage of growing one's own strawberries is that you can let them fully ripen before picking them! And, you can pick them to look pretty with their stems on! And of course, you can eat your subject when you're done ;)

My new 200mm macro lens arrived today, so I tested it out on one of these. Boy, it's going to take some adjusting. It is S.L.O.W. to focus, and there is no vibration reduction like my 105 has. On the other hand, I don't have to be right on top of my subject....so that's a good trade off. I think until I get the hang of it I'll mainly be using it tripod mounted and focus manually.

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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Father's Day

DISCLAIMER: I didn't realize until I previewed this post that my colors are all wonky :/ I got a new computer last week and obviously I need to tweak the color space settings in PS now that's it's been reloaded. I hate doing this chore! Anyhow, the colors shifted to very dull compared to what they looked like in PS, sorry!

So, to be honest, Mother's and Father's day are pretty much just another weekend day around here. Colin lives in NYC. Both of our dad's passed away years ago. My Mom passed away last fall, Brett's Mom has Alzheimer's. Not saying that for sympathy at all, it is what it is.

Anyhow, Brett chose what he wanted to do on Sunday, so we headed down to the Seattle waterfront where there was a small show of old Aston Martins, and a larger show of old yachts. Right next to this was RCL gearing up to leave for Alaska. I wanted to get in that line to board so badly ;) Who cares if I didn't have any luggage!

Anyhow, love the grill on this one, and I think it looks kinda cool reflected in the headlight:

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I haven't looked at Brett's photos on the computer yet....BUT....he shot them all in manual mode (YAY BRETT!) and on the preview screen of the camera they looked fairly well exposed. So proud of him!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Lauren and Jen's Excellent Adventure - Middleton Place Plantation

We chose to go to Middleton Place predominately because of their beautiful gardens. However, as it turns out we were about a month too late for any color. Oh well, we got to spend time with those cute sheep (posted last week) instead so all was not lost. Just a few more shots and then we'll be off to Drayton Hall next time.

I really do love the trees in this area. In Seattle our trees pretty much grow up...not out like these!

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This is the chunkiest chicken I have ever seen:

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and I couldn't resist shooting this barn cat. Unlike our cat, this one actually cooperated with me!

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Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Lauren and Jen's Excellent Adventure - Old Sheldon Church

Oops, I forgot to post these, they were from the day we stopped in Beaufort on our way to Charleston.

I had been here very briefly several years ago. The morning that Brett, Colin and I stopped it was August, about seventy bazillion degrees out with such high humidity that my sensor and lens completely fogged up AND there were at least eleventy billion bugs out. Fun, right? ;)

I really, really, really wanted to make sure to go by here this trip. Up until this day we had been relying on our phones to navigate. Once we got out of Savannah we lost service though. For two severely directionally challenged women this was TRAGIC. Just getting to Beaufort was a challenge in itself. We had stopped at the Visitor Center in Beaufort to get directions to the Church, but as it turns out the direction they gave us (typed up, so they give them to everyone) were wrong!

Anyhow, we finally found it after driving back and forth on the same (deserted) road 4 times (I kid you not) and then getting on I-95 by accident heading south to Florida in horrible traffic. I was about ready to say forget it and head to Charleston, but we persevered.

All in all, I'm not sure it was worth the effort. The dappled shade was a pain to work with, and there were several other groups of people there (including two portrait shoots going on).

So, there you have it. I am in awe at the history of this church, read this sign:

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This next one is Jen's, she got a much better shot than I did of the whole thing. Isn't it amazing:

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Can you imagine the shots you'd get here in decent light? You'd have to use a flash for fill, but still....

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I mean really, look at this texture. I can totally see doing a headshot session with Colin standing RIGHT in that little sliver of in focus area:

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Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Giving the new camera a workout :)

Just wanted to be sure I love it, and I do. I didn't get a chance to play with it until the weekend though, and it's still awfully windy out so not much in the way of macros. BUMMER. It's a perfect time of year to be shooting them!

Misses H and V:

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 I had some concerns about sharpness, so I reset the camera to factory settings and pulled out my macro (sharpest lens in the bag) and snapped a shot of Brett. He was even kind enough to remove his glasses so I could really see what was going on. As you can see, not a problem. I obviously messed something up in custom settings prior to that.

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Speaking of Brett. I was going to sell my D300 to help offset the new camera, but lo and behold, he has decided that he wants to try to learn photography :). He's most interested in landscapes, so Sunday we went off to Gasworks Park and the Locks. Little did I know until late in the day that he had been shooting aperture priority all day :O. Yeah, we gotta work on that!

Anyhow, a couple of mine from Gasworks:

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 This guy was struggling with his kite, while it's been breezy the last few weeks, it's ot a steady wind, so not the best for kite flying. I ended up chatting with him for a few minutes and emailed him some of the photos I took. Hope he likes them!

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One little macro from a sheltered from the wind area at the Locks:

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