Saturday, December 31, 2011

Bird Watching in Missouri, Thanksgiving 2011



We went to visit Chris, Amy, Ben, & Helen during Thanksgiving this year.  They have purchased a trailer and spot in a sweet little campground near the capitol of Missouri.  While we were checking out the scenery, we happened on Mallards and Canadian Geese.  They sure didn't appear to be in a hurry to head south.
Mallard: 260mm, f/6.3, 1/250 second, ISO 400
Geese: 300mm, f/8.0, 1/500 seconcd, ISO 400

Friday, December 9, 2011

Oceano Dunes

So I purchased a new ips monitor; a Dell 2410.  Yes, middle of the road, but I can see my photos as well as they can be seen with 58 year-old eyes.  I also learned how to repair photo(s) using Photoshop.  Because I took this shot toward the sun, there was a flare caused by my filter on the original images.  Thanks to technology, it became a much better photograph.
22mm, f/6.3, 1/320 second, ISO 100

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Temple of Concord in the Valle dei Templi, Agrigento, Sicily

The Concord Temple, built in the 5th century BC, is one of the best preserved Doric temples due in part to an upgrade it received in the 4th century AD.  It was also restored (again) in 1748.  The Valley of the Temples was a great attraction during our brief visit to the southern Sicily area of Agrigento.  The  modern bronze sculptures definitely complemented the incredible ancient architecture.
20mm, f/9, 1/250 second, ISO 320

The Colosseum

Here's a wide angle of the famed Roman playground, the Colosseum.  Jill and I loved our tour and group travel to Sicily and Malta, but it was also great to get away by ourselves and spend a few nights in the famed ancient Rome area.  We followed travel author Rick Steve's advice and did the 3-day "Caesar Shuffle.  We probably put in 10-12 miles over three days and my dogs were barking.  To ease the pain, we couldn't leave Rome without buying a couple pair of Italian shoes.
10 mm, f/8, 1/100 second, ISO 100

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Cupolas in the Palermo Cathedral

I like this shot of the geometrically pleasing cupolas.  My 7D did a good job at ISO 2000 as did the 10-22 wide angle lens.  The point and shoots do a great job of digital photography in well-lit scenes, but this is where I highly value my DSLR.  I even printed a large, borderless, 13X19 version of this shot on Canon Pro Platinum paper and it looks great.
19mm f/4.5 ISO 2000 1/100 second

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Mare Tirreno from Norman Castle in Erice, Sicily

Jill and I had the immense pleasure of traveling to Sicily this summer, July 2011, with my parents Pat and Jim.  Jim is a purebred Sicilian but never had the chance to visit, so it was a special trip for all of us to share it with him.  This is a spectacular view from the Norman Castle, the Castello Pepoli e Venere, in Erice, near the northwest corner of the triangulated island on the Tyrrhenian Sea.  The small, quaint, beautiful town is nearly 3000 feet above sea level.
50mm, f/10, ISO 100, 1/320 second

Monday, May 30, 2011

Dusk on the Carrizo Plain, May 2011, Color Version

We arrived around 5:30PM on a Friday evening, in time for a beautiful sunset.  Though there were no clouds, the place glowed.  The Carrizo Plain is one of our favorite camping areas.  There are rarely any people, much less campers, and you can take off on any of hundreds of dirt roads and find primitive, secluded campsites.  In fact, we did not see one other vehicle, other than a couple campers in the KCL campground, on Soda Lake Road.  We stayed in the same spot that my buddies Tim and Rob visited with me last year during the height of the flower season.  I posted a couple of songs - they're both great musicians - they played together on my You Tube site, MrMPeeps.  Check it out sometime.
100mm f/9.0 ISO 100 1/15 second

Dusk on the Carrizo Plain, May 2011, B&W Version

Here's a B&W version of the same beautiful sunset scene on the Carrizo Plain late in May, 2011.  The weather was shockingly cool, but unsurprisingly windy!
100mm f/9.0 ISO 100 1/15 second

Horned Lizard on the Carrizo Plain, May 2011

Jill spotted this horned lizard while we hiking above the Carrizo Plain.  She always thinks of the scene in "O Brother Where Art Thou?" whenever "horny toad" is mentioned.  We always laugh about it, everytime! This portrait was taken with my new travel lens, a prime Canon EF 28mm f/2.8.  It's small and light and does a decent job.
28mm f/7.1 ISO 100 1/250 second

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Grandparents Babysit Lily in April

Lily is really growing up fast.  Hopefully, she had as good a time with her grandparents as we did with her.  She's getting so big that she feeds herself...and her bib...and her face...and her hands..and the table...and the floor.  No malnutrition here.
46mm F/4 1/60 second ISO 400

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Smoky Mountain Road, Grand Staircase/Escalante Monument, Utah

Rob and I drove the 76 mile, extremely remote dirt road from Big Water to Escalante, Utah in late April, 2011.  After a night in the Warm Creek Bay area  in Glen Canyon NRA, we continued on our way.  The first half of the drive was spectacular with views of Glen Canyon, incredible rock formations, and miles of beautiful Utah and Arizona high desert.  There was some fun 4-wheeling going up Kelly Grade, but once we climbed the Kaiparowits Plateau, our work was really cut out for us; lots of miles to go on a twisty, rutted, and rocky road.  We managed to find a suitable camping spot late that afternoon.  We noticed some clouds moving in that evening and by 4 am the next morning, it began to rain.  It was light at first and faded away, only to return more consistently around 5.  Soon after, it was snowing.  It was to time get out while the getting was good, if it still was.  Utah red dirt roads are notoriously impassible when they get wet.  We managed to slip and slide the last 4-5 miles into Escalante and were thrilled when we hit pavement for the first time in 90 miles.  We toured Bryce Canyon and Zion, then headed to warm and windy, Death Valley.
24mm, f/8, 1/80 sec, ISO 100

Artist's Drive in Death Valley


After the weather turned on us in Utah, we decided to head to Death Valley.  Of the many 4 wheel adventures I've had here, I had never managed to take the short 3-4 mile, one-way loop of Artist's Drive.  The colors were varied and beautiful as you can see.
32mm, f/9, 1/125, ISO 100

Friday, April 1, 2011

Half Dome, Summer 2010, Black & White

Here's a B&W version of the iconic California monolith.  It was overcast that day, so this approach appealed to me.
70mm, f/13 1/160 ISO 250

Friday, March 25, 2011

View of Las Sal Mountains from Snow Flats Road in SE Utah

This shot was taken from Snow Flats Road off of the 261 north of the Moki Dugway, which is just out of Mexican Hat, Utah. I would bet that you've never been here.  Jill and I love Utah and we have to blame our uncle, John Sanders, of Durango, Colorado.  Uncle John knows Southern Utah and the 4 Corners in general, better than any white man alive.  You can see the Comb Ridge on the upper right.  We took the Comb Ridge road to Hwy 95 and then on to Natural Bridges NM(see the arch in earlier post).  There were many cave dwellings we explored on this 4 wheel drive route and the BLM campgrounds were great.
65mm f/18 1/100 ISO 400

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Hummingbird in Garden June 2010

This photo was actually taken hand-held with my original DSLR; Canon T1i.  However, it's all about the glass and this is another shot with the 100mmL Macro....
100mm f/4.5 1/100 ISO 800

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Sierra from Cerro Alto near Morro Bay, California, February 27, 2011

Jill, Kathleen, and I went for a beautiful, cold (for California) hike up Cerro Alto the last Sunday in February.  It was one of those very rare days where the "valley fog" towards Fresno was tamped down by the temperature inversion.  I believe that's Chalk Mountain in my home town of Atascadero.  This is when I wished I had that 500mm telephoto L lens , but alas, this shot isn't bad thanks to Lightroom.
300mm f/7.1 1/640 ISO 100

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Apricot Flowers

  I know, it's a flower, but it's lucky I got it before the weather hit last week.  This is why I like this macro lens.
100mm f/32 1/3 sec +/- ISO 100

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Solar Panels

We put up these solar panels in June of 2009.  Since then we have only had to pay PGE a monthly fee (of course) for reading our meter.  This photo was taken early in February this year. 
10mm f/8 1/128 ISO 100

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Big Sur Weekend February 2011

It was a very rainy holiday weekend at Julia Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park.  However, our drive home Sunday was, as you can see, a gorgeous one.  Here's a standard shot of Highway 1 on the Big Sur coast. Obviously, I cropped this photo.  70mm, f/9, 1/60 second, 100 ISO and some Lightroom work.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

North Rim Grand Canyon, Summer 2010

The North Rim of the Grand Canyon is a special place.  You can see the Colorado River from several locations and the camping outside the park is great. Jill and I love to 4 wheel camp and this is one of many fabulous western state venues we've had the pleasure to visit.
24mm f/22 1/60 ISO 200



    1/60 f/22 24mm ISO 200