Sunday, March 30, 2014

Horse Walking Her Colt

So I got up early this morning to go out and get some bluebonnets pics, but I ended up getting better shots of these horses.  You see, the bluebonnets are in full bloom and they are all over the place.  I found a spot here in Georgetown that has a ton of them.  The problem is that they are all in someone's front yard.  However, their driveway looked like it would be perfect with the sun rising behind it in the morning.  So, I got up and went out there and got a few shots.  But, I felt a little weird about going on someone's property without their permission so the shots I took were from the street and they really didn't turn out very well.

After that disappointment, I decided to drive to the spot where I got my best bluebonnet shot from a few years ago.  When I got there, no bluebonnets at all, just a field of weeds.  But right next to it was this corral with these horses.  So, I shot them and here we are!

They were very friendly horses, they even walked over and let me pet their noses.  Maybe they thought I had some food or something, but I like to think it was my charming demeanor that brought them over. :-)  OK, they were looking for food...  There were actually two sets of horse moms with their colts, but these two were the more photogenic I think...



Exif data:

Camera - Nikon D700
Lens - Nikkor 28 - 300mm f3.5 - 5.6
Focal length - 210mm
Aperture - f5.6
Exposure - 1/160
Exposure Program - Aperture priority AE
ISO - 200
Flash - No Flash

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Oklahoma City Memorial #4

Time to go back to Oklahoma City and another shot of the memorial there...

Again, this is another shot of the west side of the memorial.  Is a good area to shoot in the late afternoon and early evening as you can see that you can get good shots when the sun starts setting.  The only problem with the west side is that there's an ugly building just behind the "monolith" and to the right.  So, I took a little Photoshop liberty and cloned the tree on the left and put it on the right to get rid of that building.  I think it looks better this way...

Click on the photo itself to get a better look at it.  For some reason, sometimes when I load it up on the blog, Blogger kind of screws it up...


Exif data:

Camera - Nikon D700
Lens Model - Nikkor 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 
Aperture - f/16.0 
Exposure - 1/40
Exposure Program - Aperture-priority AE 
ISO Speed - 200 
Exposure Bias - +2 EV 
Flash - No Flash

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Time-lapsing...

So I figured out how to do a little bit of a timelapse on the dslr, but I'm still not liking it 100% yet...  Anyone out there know of a way to make it less choppy?

Pike's Peak Cog Railway

We're going to shake it up a little and go back to the archives for today's shot...  This is the train that goes up Pike's Peak in Manitou Springs, CO.  It's called the Pike's Peak Cog Railway and it looks like a pretty fun ride and probably quite scenic.  We didn't ride it when we were there as we decided to drive up!  The drive is awesome but not for the faint of heart... Just ask Eileen! :-)  Anyway, if you are ever there and would rather not drive, this is the way to go!

Here's a little about the how a cog train works from their website:

"Conventional railroads use the friction of wheels upon the rails, called "adhesion", to provide locomotive power. A cog, or rack, railroad uses a gear, "cog wheel", meshing into a special rack rail (mounted in the middle between the outer rails) to climb much steeper grades than those possible with a standard adhesion railroad. An adhesion railroad can only climb grades of 4 to 6%, with very short sections of up to 9%. A "rack" railroad can climb grades of up to 48%, depending upon the type of rack system employed. Some Swiss trains use a combination of "rack" and "adhesion". This enables the trains to reach much higher speeds on the adhesion sections (rack railroads can not go much faster than 15 miles per hour or they run the risk of dislodgement from the rack rail- M & PP Ry.'s top speed is about 9 MPH)."


Exif data:

Camera - Nikon D300S
Lens Model - Sigma 10.0-20.0 mm f/4.0-5.6
Exposure Program - Aperture-priority AE
Aperture - f/11.0
Focal Length - 13 mm
ISO Speed - 200
Flash - No Flash

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Band at the Blind Pig

Van Sutherland and I stopped in at "The Blind Pig" on 6th St during our little photowalk during South By Southwest last Tuesday night.  It's a pretty friendly place and this band was playing on the upper level of the bar.  Sorry I didn't get the name of the band, but they seemed pretty good...


Exif data:

Camera - Nikon D700
Lens Model - Nikkor 28.0-300.0 mm f/3.5-5.6
Exposure Program - Aperture-priority AE
Exposure - 0.033 sec (1/30)
Aperture - f/5.3
Focal Length - 90 mm
ISO Speed - 1600
Exposure Bias - +1 EV
Flash - No Flash

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Shots from SXSW 2014

Van Sutherland and I went out to downtown Austin last night to get some street shots from South By Southwest Film and Music Festival (SXSW).  What I have here is just a random set of shots from wandering the Sixth St area of downtown during this huge fest.  I converted them to black and white because I like the timelessness of that format and I think that style always adds a little interest!  And interest do these shots need! :-)

After looking at what I have captured, I have concluded that I need a remedial street photography class.  Most everything I captured was crap and what I have posted here is no exception, but they are the best of the lot.  It was still fun to do though!  Man, there were a lot of people down there for a Tuesday night!

Wish I would've read the following before going out:  14 Secrets of Successful Street Photography by Paul Bence.  Might've helped...

Lastly, click on each photo for a better view...











Inside the CapMetro Rail Maintenance Facility

Yesterday I had to do some work on one of the trains and so I went in a little early to get a couple of shots inside the maintenance facility.  I took several of and around the trains and this is the one I liked best.  This place is like a Jiffy Lube on steroids!  You can see it still has the same kind of pits for changing engine oil in cars, but obviously these are much bigger!  I don't mean to disparage our operation here by comparing it to Jiffy Lube, that's not my intent.  It's just that the layout is the same only on a much larger scale!  I think it's cool even if my description isn't!

This shot is a single raw that I adjusted in Photoshop CC's camera raw filter with a little bit of Nik Color Efex 4's tonal contrast, pro contrast and darken lighten center filters thrown in for good measure.  It's not an HDR.  I'm trying to ween myself off of HDR unless really necessary.  Not everything can be HDR! :-)


Exif data:

Camera - Nikon D700
Lens Model - Nikkor 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0
Exposure Program - Aperture-priority AE
Exposure - 0.04 sec (1/25)
Aperture - f/6.3
Focal Length - 16 mm
ISO Speed - 1600
Exposure Bias -  +1 EV
Flash - No Flash

Monday, March 10, 2014

Kapoho Sunrise #2

Time to shake it up a bit...  While we're waiting for the weather to turn to spring-like temps, I thought maybe a shot from Hawaii would help speed things along.. This is another shot from the back of the vacation rental house we stayed at in the town of Kapoho on the big island. We had beautiful sunrises there over the water. It's so tranquil and calming there.



Friday, March 7, 2014

Downtown OKC at Sunset

Just to change up the Oklahoma City shots a little, I thought I'd put out a dusk shot of the city skyline.  I took this from the the parking garage of the hotel we stayed at in Bricktown.  Bricktown is pretty cool.  It was an old warehouse district that is now home to a bunch of restaurants and bars.  Never thought OKC would be a fun place, but turns out it is!  There's even a two mile long riverwalk!



Exif data:

Camera - Nikon D700
Lens Model - Nikkor 28.0-300.0 mm f/3.5-5.6
Exposure Program - Aperture-priority AE
Exposure - 2
Aperture - f/8.0
Focal Length - 28 mm
ISO Speed - 200
Exposure Bias +1 EV
Flash - No Flash

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Oklahoma City Memorial #3

These are the chairs that are setup in the footprint of the old Alfred P. Murrah Federal building to represent each victim of the April 19th, 1995 bombing at the Oklahoma City National Memorial.  When you see all 168 of them, it really makes you think how tragic that day was.  Each chair has the name of one of the victims on it.  As you can see here, the main chair in the foreground of this shot is named after Katherine Louise Cregan.  Here is a little something about her from the memorial's website:

"Katherine Louise (Kathy) Cregan, 60, was a widow devoted to her three sons, William, Regis and Christopher, her two grandsons, Sean and Jonathan, and her three granddaughters, Rachel, Kari and Michelle. She was fond of telling friends how much she loved to spoil them. Her two dogs, Yorkshire terriers Max and Jason, also received a great deal of her attention. Cregan, 60, was born Nov. 15, 1934, in West Memphis, Ark. She was a longtime resident of Oklahoma City and a graduate of Classen High School. She worked as a claims representative for the Social Security Administration for 13 years. "


Exif data:

Camera - Nikon D700
Lens Model - Nikkor 28.0-300.0 mm f/3.5-5.6
Exposure Program - Aperture-priority AE
Metering Mode -  Multi-segment
Exposure -  0.4
Aperture - f/8.0
Focal Length -  28 mm
ISO Speed -  200
Flash - No Flash

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Oklahoma City Memorial #2

Here is another shot of the Oklahoma City Memorial that I took a couple of weekends ago.  It's from a similar angle as my previous, however, it's a little further up the hill and I shot it before the sun was completely down.  I really like how the sun shines through the opening in the monolith-type structure at the far end. 

This shot as well as my previous is a 7-shot HDR merged with details enhancer in Photomatix 4 and post-processed in PSCC with the Nik bundle.  Yes, it's an HDR, but I tried to make it look more "photographic" instead of "painterly" like a lot of HDRs can look.


Exif data:

Camera - Nikon D700
Lens Model - Nikkor 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0
Exposure Program - Aperture-priority AE
Metering Mode - Multi-segment
Exposure - 0.05 sec (1/20)
Aperture -  f/16.0
Focal Length - 18 mm
ISO Speed - 200
Flash - No Flash

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Oklahoma City Memorial #1

Oklahoma City has the tragic but must see Oklahoma City Memorial dedicated to those who lost their lives on April 19th, 1995 when a crazed idiot terrorist blew up the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building at 9:02 am that fateful day.  It is a beautiful place; one that is full of symbolism and artistry.  There are two big monolith-type structures at each end of the memorial.  One has the time 9:01 on it and the other has 9:03 on it.  The 9:01 represents the innocence of the city before the blast and 9:03 represents the time afterwards.  In between there is a reflecting pool and then in the footprint of the Murrah Building are chairs set to represent those who perished.  They are lined up such that they represent the nine floors of the building as well as the blast pattern from the bomb's effect on the building.  And the flagstone you see here in the foreground is such that it represents broken glass, for the shattered glass of the building and the shattered lives left in this tragedy's wake.

It's quite a site to see and if you ever visit OKC, take some time to see the memorial.  You'll be glad you did!


Exif data:

Camera - Nikon D700
Lens Model - Nikkor 28.0-300.0 mm f/3.5-5.6
Exposure Program - Aperture-priority AE
Metering Mode -  Multi-segment
Exposure - 1
Aperture -  f/8.0
Focal Length - 40 mm
ISO Speed - 200
Flash - No Flash

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