Day 318 (13 Nov 2012) The Gift of Life

I’ve been a blood donor since I was 17, giving my first pint as a Junior in high school.  I’ve not always been consistent in giving every time possible, but always do when asked.  I’ve been more regular since moving to CT, and its always a good feeling to be able to help someone who I will never meet!

I highly recommend you go to www.redcross.com and find a donation site near you and give!  There is almost always a shortage, so your donation will be greatly appreciated by someone and their family!  If you don’t like needles, you won’t even have to watch them stick you or look at your arm at any time.  All you feel is a little pinch and it’s over!

Do you give blood?  Why or why not?  I’m curious to know 🙂

2012_Nov_13_Red Cross Sticker_005

Day 285 (11 Oct 2012) I’m Back!!

I know that you must be going into withdrawals not having an image of mine to take in every day over the past two and a half weeks, but now your wait is over!  HaHa, J/K 🙂  I’m not ‘that’ full of myself.  But It is good to get back into this daily activity.

The past two weeks were AMAZING, to say the least.  Spending 2 weeks with my amazing girlfriend in Barcelona and the surrounding areas (France and Andorra, included) was better than I had dreamed.  Can’t wait for her to visit here in December 🙂 🙂

While there I shot just under 2000 images, and have not had a chance to do anything with them, as I had two mid-terms this week upon returning (finished last one tonight), so any spare time was in the books.  I hope to work on them slowly over the next few days/weeks, so keep your eyes peeled for make-up posts (and more images up on Flickr)

Tonight after my last mid-term of the semester, I pulled out a LED powered glow stick to see what kind of fun I could have in my dark basement.  I think I had more fun than the images portray, but that’s always ok 🙂

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Day 248 (5 Sep 2012) Falling

I’m not sure what the proper verb for the onset of the Fall season, but it’s onsetting!  Some of the leaves here are starting to turn.  Before long all the trees will be displaying beautiful hues of red, yellow, and orange; I can hardly wait!  Last year tropical storm Irene came near the Fall season and disrupted the natural seasonal change; in CT the leaves changed over almost completely within a 4 day period; most of which I was stuck out of town (due to the storm delaying my return flight).  This year I’m not going anywhere till late Sept, so I’m hoping to see the leaves in all their glory!

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60 mm, 1/40 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100, 60mm macro lens (Color of Fall)

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60 mm, 1/40 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100, 60mm macro lens (Change Is Coming)

Day 204 (22 July 2012) Gates and Fences

I have to admit that today was one of those days were I was totally unmotivated to do anything, much less hop in my truck and drive to the location for today’s shoot.  And even though I really like the results of my shooting/editing, I can’t get excited about it.  Have you ever had one of those days?  What did you do to get out of the funk?

Anyway, today’s images have a double inspiration.  First from my friend Carol, who requested that I shoot fences, and also from Shannon, co-host of this months collaborative photo shoot project/challenge.  This month’s challenge is silhouettes, and one of the idea-fostering images she shot prompted the shot of barb wire below.  Thank you both, ladies, for the inspiration for today’s shoot 🙂  I don’t know which of the two silhouettes below will be my submission.  I really like the barb wire shot, but don’t want to be a copy-cat.  Though I think I should have used a larger aperture in the wooden fence image to reduce the star-ing affect of the sun.  What do you think?

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35 mm, 1/25 sec, f/8.0, ISO 200 (Red Gate)

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43 mm, 1/25 sec, f/8.0, ISO 200 (Gate Post)

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18 mm, 1/160 sec, f/11, ISO 100 (Barb Wire Silhouette)

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18 mm, 1/200 sec, f/13, ISO 100 (Farm Fence Silhouette)

Day 174 (22 June 2012) Patriotism

Today’s image is for the photo scavenger hunt (hosted by SeeingSpotsPhotography and Nick Exposed), under the title “Patriotism”.  When I think of the word Patriotism, my first thoughts are of the US Flag, followed closely by our men and women in uniform: Navy, Army, Coast Guard, Marines, Air Force, Fire Fighters, Police, and others who risk themselves for their fellow man.
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60 mm, 1/640 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100, 60mm macro lens (Patriotism)

Here is the list I’m shooting from.  I’m supposed to “find” 15 of these:

  • Chuck Norris Was Here
  • “Big Foot Footprint”
  • Reflected Love
  • Abstract Self Portrait
  • Framed Moon
  • “Whats your sign”
  • Anti-gravity
  • Unusual Perspective
  • Abandoned
  • Silence
  • Pride and Joy
  • Emerging Star
  • Buried Treasure
  • Sparkler fun
  • Clownin Around Upside-down
  • Lyric Quotograph
  • Summer
  • Patriotism
  • Night

Day 146 (25 May 2012) Color and Trash

I tend to recycle as much as I can (it saves me money on trash service, not going to debate the environmental pluses/minuses of recycling here), and had a few of my cleaned out yogurt containers sitting on the counter ready to go to the recycle bin, but the colors caught my eye a few days ago, so I left them for such a time as this 🙂

I thought it would be cool to play with them a little in front of the camera as an exercise in color.  I also hope this encourages you to look at everything around you for inspiration for shooting!  Look at the images below and then think about that they are of my trash!  Subjects for your work can be anything!  I challenge you to look for interesting subjects in new and abnormal locations/places, maybe even your own trash can!

And as an FYI, I’m leaving in about 15 min to head back up to the ADK Mountains in upstate New York for tonight and tomorrow.  I may not get a chance to post tomorrow, but I will be taking some photos, you can be sure 🙂  I’ll definitely post on Sunday.

Line of Colors

60 mm, 1/10 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100, 60mm Canon macro lens (Line of Colors)

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60 mm, 1/5 sec, f/3.5, ISO 100, 60mm Canon macro lens (Array of Color)

Color Wheel

60 mm, 1/50 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100, 60mm Canon macro lens (Color Wheel)

Tower of Color

60 mm, 1/30 sec, f/2.8, ISO 200, 60mm Canon macro lens (Tower of Color)

Day 140 (19 May 2012) Loneliness

Tonight I went on a photo shoot in down-town New London, CT, for a photo calling put on by Artbycamila  The challenge is “Red” & “Loneliness”.  I came  up with an idea for the image and my friend agreed to model for me.

My plan was to have her crouched near a building, and using a long exposure, have people walking past her, showing blurred people w/ her being sharp and in focus.  I wasn’t able to get the image I was after.  There were not a lot of people out, like I had hoped, but I did ask a couple of guys to walk in front of the lens a couple times, but as you can see, they don’t show up in the image.  I’m not sure If I need more people, or just to have them walk real slow, or do it in daylight.  This is my first attempt at doing this kind of shot, and I guess I need to experiment some more 🙂  However, I am pleased with the finished image, but not sure if it will be my final submission.

Loneliness

24 mm, 15 sec, f/14, ISO 100, 18-55mm kit lens (Loneliness)

Day 124 (3 May 2012) Garage Colors

I was walking down into my garage to grab my camera out of my car, and as I turned to reenter the house, I happened to look up at my pegboard wall.  I am shocked I never noticed the abundance of Red and especially Yellow amongst these tools!  I turned to look around and saw a bunch more red and yellow through out my garage.  I find it interesting that so many tools, tool boxes, etc are these bright colors. I know it’s not great photography, but I’ve got a lot so homework to do!

Tool Colors

55 mm, 1/20 sec, f/5.6, ISO 800, 18-55mm kit lens (Tool Colors)

This is just an old vice I have bolted to one of my workbenches. I got it from an old woman who was cleaning out her father’s basement shop. This is probably many decades older than I am, and still works perfectly! I’m not happy with this shot; it could use a different perspective and less DoF (had my kit lens on, f/4 is too small an aperture I think).

Old Vice

25 mm, 1/20 sec, f/4.0, ISO 800, 18-55mm kit lens (Old Vice)

Day 98 (7 April 2012) Busy as a Bee

Today is what my employer would call a ” day off.”  But it’s funny that I always have tons of work to do on my day off.  Not for my job, but home work, yard work, auto work, house work, etc.  It seems I never have enough time to get it done, but that’s ok.  Most of it will still be there for my next “day off” lol.

On one of my errands, I swung into the local high school parking lot since I noticed a lot of trees blooming.  I swapped out the kit zoom for the macro lens and spend about 20 min shooting the flowers.  Today was bright and sunny, and shooting at about 2:30 pm meant the light was bright and harsh.  So could that with the challenge of shooting white flowers against a back-lit sky, I was happy that I was able to get some good shots 🙂


Busy Bee

60 mm, 1/1600, f/2.8, ISO 100, 60mm macro lens (Busy Bee) {cropped}

White Bliss

60 mm, 1/2000, f/2.8, ISO 100, 60mm macro lens (White Bliss)

Azalea

60 mm, 1/80, f/5.6, ISO 100, 60mm macro lens (Azalea)

And this is a sight I’m never tired of seeing!

Old Glory

60 mm, 1/500, f/5.6, ISO 100, 60mm macro lens (Old Glory)

Day 97 (6 April 2012) Smoke

Every time I blow out a candle, I am mesmerized by the patterns and shapes that the smoke creates as it wafts up from the wick.  Today I grabbed my camera just as I blew one out and took a few shots.  And just for fun, I played with the split toning to see what it would look like in different colors.  A bit different than what I normally do, but it was fun and a learning experience 🙂

I think I would like to do this again more deliberately, with a  cleaner back ground and play with the  shutter speed to see how it comes out.  But for now, I like how these turned out.

Blue Smoke

60 mm, 1/250 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100, 60 mm macro lens (Blue Smoke)

Red Smoke

60 mm, 1/250 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100, 60 mm macro lens (Red Smoke)

Smoke

60 mm, 1/200 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100, 60 mm macro lens (Smoke)

Day 72.5 (12.5 March 2012) The photos I wanted to post yesterday

I figured out my problem (my hard drive was full!  go figure!), so here are two photos I wanted to share last night:

Chain Link Fence

Chain Link Fence

Red Door

Red Door

Day 54 (23 Feb 2012) Norwich at Night

For a while I’ve wanted to find a high location and shoot down-town Norwich, CT at night.  Downtown is situated near the Thames River at a relatively low elevation compared to the surrounding area, so I thought I might find some high ground with a clear view.  As I’ve driven through it the past few times I’ve tried to pay more attention to what is around me as far as possible shooting locations.  This will need some actual dedicated planning and scouting, as all I’ve seen in my limited routes is a parking garage.  So tonight I tried it.  Since it’s winter and not the weekend, the area wasn’t exactly bustling with crowds, so from my vantage point it wasn’t real exciting.  But since it was after 9pm I parked and took a few shots.

Norwich, CT

18 mm, 30 sec, f/8.0, ISO 100, EF-S 18-55mm IS kit lens (Norwich, CT)

Red Fire Hydrant

18 mm, 20 sec, f/8.0, ISO 100, EF-S 18-55mm IS kit lens ()

Empty

18 mm, 15 sec, f/11.0, ISO 100, EF-S 18-55mm IS kit lens (Empty)

Day 52 (21 Feb 2012) Smok’n

*Disclaimer: this is not an endorsement for or against the tobacco industry or the use of their products*

As one drives through the Windsor, CT area either on I-91 or Rt 20, one can see the long, narrow, faded red tobacco sheds along side their field.  Tobacco has been grown in CT since the 1800s and there is still about 2000 acres farmed today.  The leaves grown here are primarily used in the wrapper, or outer layers of cigars.  CT’s tobacco is considered a premium variety, so the farming of this controversial crop continues.

I’ve always loved old barns and run-down/weathered buildings, and today I decided to shoot for a few minutes from near the road (I didn’t want to trespass too bad).  I decided to use my ‘nifty fifty’ or Canon 50mm f/1.8 lens to force me to think in new ways while shooting.

Tobacco Sheds

50 mm, 1/500 sec, f/2.2, ISO 100, EF 50mm f/1.8 ii (Tobacco Sheds)

Keep Out

50 mm, 1/200 sec, f/2.2, ISO 100, EF 50mm f/1.8 ii (Keep Out)

Hinge

50 mm, 1/250 sec, f/1.8, ISO 100, EF 50mm f/1.8 ii (Hinge)

Day 47 (16 Feb 2012) The Commute

This afternoon was a rainy afternoon here in CT.  And as such, everyone on the freeway decided that they couldn’t drive more than 35 mph.  So I decided If I was going to crawl along at a snail’s pace, I would detour and parallel the highway on city streets.  My thought was that I probably won’t lose any more time, plus I’ll get to see an area of town I normally don’t get to see.  And maybe I would see something worth shooting.

Red Lights In The Rain

55 mm, 1/30 sec, f/5.6, ISO 400, 18-55mm kit lens (Red Lights In The Rain)

But alas, the surface streets were crawling, too.  It took over 30 min to less than a mile.  As I’m sitting at a light I’ve watched turn green many time, I let my mind drift from my predicament and my focus locked onto the red dots in the rain drops on my wind shield.  And since my camera was near by, I grabbed it and was able to improve my mood a bit 🙂

But as I continued to crawl, all I saw was red.  Not anger (ok, maybe a little), but the sea of red tail lights stretched out in front of me like a slow-moving ribbon.

Ribbon of Red

49 mm, 1/8 sec, f/5.6, ISO 400, 18-55mm kit lens (Ribbon of Red)

Day 41 (10 Feb 2012) Happy Fruit

I was just messing around with my tripod/camera and thought it would be fun to play with my food.  Nothing spectacular today, it was fun to try using my tripod in a different way (pointing down from a low hight).

Happy Fruit

30 mm, 3.2 sec, f/11, ISO 100, Canon 18-55mm kit lens (Happy Fruit)

( fruit )

25 mm, 3.2 sec, f/11, ISO 100, Canon 18-55mm kit lens ( fruit )

Day 35 (4 Feb 2012) The Back Woods

Today my girlfriend and I decided to take a quick walk in the woods behind my yard.  I wanted to show her an old beaver pond since we had talked about some photos I had taken last summer out there.  There wasn’t much life out there today, but we did come back with some good photos.  I can’t wait for the spring to go back out and shoot it in its full color.

Pond and Sky

20 mm, 1/80 sec, f/13, ISO 100, EF-S 18-55mm IS kit lens (Pond and Sky)

Red

49mm, 1/50 sec, f/5/6, ISO 100, EF-S 18-55mm IS kit lens (Red)

Day 16 (16 Jan 2012) All Stop

A friend & initial photography mentor and I decided to do photography challenges periodically, and for this week, he chose “red.”  I’ll get to choose the next challenge.

So today on my way home I was thinking what I could shoot that is red or has to do with red.  And as I was sitting at a traffic light, it dawned on me that the reason I wasn’t going anywhere is because the light is red!  It was a fairly long light, and the though came quickly, so I grabbed my camera and tried to capture a red light at night.  The shot I like best (or am least unimpressed by) is one that I took out of focus.  You can see the three stop lights and the brake lights of the car in front of me.  It would have probably turned out better had I parked and set up the camera on my tripod and took my time, but that will have to wait for another day.

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55 mm, 1/15 sec, f/5.6, ISO 800 (Red Traffic Light)