Saturday, December 31, 2011

Loma Alta (2011 Picks)

Rock & Fence, Loma Alta - Marin County  2011

Grass & Clouds, Loma Alta - Marin County  2011

Mike hiked to the top of Loma Alta a few times this past year.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Alpenglow (2011 Picks)

Alpenglow - Sierra Nevada  2011

Colorful shot taken at Mike's after-accident camp with the D90.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Yosemite Accident (2011 Picks)

Hali, Ray, Helicopter - Sierra Nevada  2011

Hali & Tuffy - Marin County  2011

Very dramatic photojournalist pix: Hali in foreground, Ray the paramedic doing his thing with helicopter in background. Nice spot to have an accident, though, if you're thinking of needing helicopter support . . . lots of relatively flat granite.

Of course, glacier-polished granite was the cause of the accident in the first place.

In any event, Hali has now graduated to a cane . . . seen here in December leading Tuffy.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Mules (2011 Picks)

Preparing Feed - Sierra Nevada  2011

Watering - Sierra Nevada  2011

. . . and also, Mark - the packer on our trip, first preparing the morning feed, then letting the mules drink at the Tuolumne River.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne (2011 Picks)

Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne - Sierra Nevada  2011

Granite Wall, Tuolumne River - Sierra Nevada  2011

Top: Panoramic view of the canyon. Alas, Mike's only photo op was early in the morning, so he had to contend with extremely flat lighting.

Bottom: Late afternoon shot of the granite monolith seen in the top photo, but taken by the river's edge looking up.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Monday Maple Blogging (2011 Picks)

Maple & Tuolumne River - Yosemite  2011

Maple, Pacific Coast Trail - Yosemite  2011

. . . Maple the horse, that is.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Santa Claus and Space Heater

Santa Claus, Space Heater - Calaveras County  2010

Seen in Arnold last year when we went snowshoeing.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Santa, Self-Portrait

Santa, Self-Portrait - Marin County  2011

. . . in San Anselmo the other day.

Friday, December 23, 2011

San Francisco (2011 Picks)

Skyline - San Francisco  2011

Statues, Legion of Honor - San Francisco  2011

Top: SF skyline reflected in a relatively rare unruffled bay.

Bottom: Legion of Honor with Rodin statues.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Flowers (2011 Picks)

Sweet Peas - Marin County  2011

Sunflowers - Marin County  2011

The first mikereport flower posting occured during the first month of the blog, in January, 2008. Since then I've tried to upgrade my still-life skills.

It's difficult. I'm trying to introduce some still-life flower pix into my booth inventory, but they have to compete with other, more flashier images.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Los Angeles, Black and White (2011 Picks)

Photographer - Los Angeles  2011

Museum Guard - Los Angeles  2011

It's interesting . . . my earlier black and white photos, even though unprinted, still maintain a certain kind of presence in the world through the physical existence of all those Plus-X negatives.

The digital black and white photos on the blog, however, are almost certainly never going to be printed and exist solely in cyberspace.

It's interesting.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Monterey County (2011 Picks)

Grass & Trees - Monterey County  2011

Oaks - Monterey County  2011

Both photos are merges: the sycamore and cottonwood shot combines two horizontal photos for a vertical image, and the oak photo represents three vertical photos merged for a horizontal image.

Top image made at Garland Ranch just off the Carmel Valley Road; bottom one made in Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park in Big Sur.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Monday Hermit Thrush Blogging (2011 Picks)

Hermit Thrush - Marin County  2011

In the swamp, in secluded recesses,  

A shy and hidden bird is warbling a song.    
Solitary, the thrush,
The hermit, withdrawn to himself, avoiding the settlements,           
Sings by himself a song.

From Walt Whitman's When Lilacs Last in the Door-Yard Bloom'd.

This thrush, however, was not withdrawn to himself at all, standing firmly athwart the gate, refusing me entry. By chance I had my Nikon D90 hanging around my neck, so I was able to slowly put down my grocery bags, bring up the Nikon and take several shots in the rain, gradually inching forward until the little bird got bored with the standoff. Taken in April, 2011.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Kids, Black and White (2011 Picks)

Jumping (San Anselmo) - Marin County  2011

Paulina's Friend (Bolinas) - Marin County  2011

Both taken with the Canon G12.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

San Rafael Sightems: An Oasis, Figures

An Oasis - Marin County  2011

Figures - Marin County  2011

. . . across the street from Marelli Bros. shoe repair on Fourth St.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Ocean (2011 Picks)

Highway 1 - Monterey County  2011

Limantour Beach - Marin County  2011

Highway 1: I stopped at one of the famed highway's outlooks. The famous Bixby Bridge can - just barely - be seen in the distance.

Limantour Beach photo taken in early morning.

Thursday, December 15, 2011


Cabin (Arnold) - Calaveras County  2011

Oak Leaves - Calaveras County  2011

Mike got back to the cabin in time to go for a little walk, checking out the fall oak leaves and enjoying the chill November autumn evening.

Extremely pleasant to be able to come back and crank up the heat and turn on the lights . . . what a luxury!

Plus, a barbequed ribeye. Wow!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Ebbetts Pass Drive #6: Markleeville, Fritos & Beer

Markleeville Store - Alpine County  2011

Fritos & Beer - Alpine County  2011

Mike's last visit to Markleeville was in . . . um . . . 1998.

But, the Markleeville Store is still in existence! And, unlike in 1998, Mike actually enters the store this time . . .  in search of Fritos. Whoa . . . only the large Fritos bag is for sale. Oh well! Large size Fritos it is!

Returning to Arnold on highway 4, Mike pulls off at Hermit Valley for his requisite Sierra Fritos and beer.

Oh, can't help but highlight another interesting Fritos and beer photo op.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Ebbetts Pass Drive #5: Monitor Pass

View West from Monitor Pass - Alpine County  2011

Driving up towards Monitor Pass the landscape opened up; mountain vistas presented themselves.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Monday Egret, Pelican, Gull, etc Blogging

Birds, Various - Marin County  2011

Also ducks, cormorants and more. I don't know what was going on, but someone had obviously called an important mandatory meeting.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Ebbetts Pass Drive #4: Sage & Aspens

Sage & Aspens - Alpine County  2011

Once over Ebbett Pass, the road winds down to eventually intersect with highway 89. Mike turned onto 89 and started up the road towards Monitor Pass, but before he got there he had to stop to admire the autumnal aspens turning color in the arid eastern Sierra landscape.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Occupy Berkeley

Occupy Berkeley - Berkeley 2011
We Demand - Berkeley  2011

The park where Mike would normally show his photos in December has been unavailable due to the Occupy Berkeley movement.

Earlier Berkeley protest photo here.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Ebbetts Pass Drive #3: Aspens

Aspens - Alpine County  2011

Aspens & Pines - Alpine County  2011

Once past Lake Alpine, the road narrows and the center yellow line disappears. Hairpin turns, blind corners, and aspens.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Ebbetts Pass Drive #2: Lake Alpine

Lake Alpine - Alpine County  2011

Crossing over from Calaveras County to Alpine County one comes immediately upon Lake Alpine. Very nice in early November with nobody there.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Ebbetts Pass Drive #1: Boulders & Manzanita

Boulders - Calaveras County  2011

Manzanita - Calaveras County  2011

Starting early, Mike drove east from Arnold on highway 4. Although not as spectacular as either the Sonora or Tioga Pass roads, the Ebbets Pass route is still very scenic, with some nice boulder and manzanita areas.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Big Trees

Sequoia Trunk - Calaveras County  2011
Dogwood Leaves - Calaveras County  2011

The town of Arnold is very close to the state of California's Calaveras Big Trees State Park.

Mike has found that the sequoia trees found there are difficult to photograph. Hard to show their particular massive quality . . . pointing the camera up doesn't seem to help. We will have to think on this.

Nice dogwood leaves in the gathering dusk.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Monday Dog Blogging

Dogs - Marin County  2011

. . . at the Starbucks in San Rafael near Staples.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Building, Highway 4

Building (Farmington) - San Joaquin County  2011

Mike took a few days in early November to visit the mountains in the Arnold area. This building was sighted right off highway 4's rural central valley section, half-way to Angels Camp.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Recycle Center Truck

Recycle Center Truck - San Rafael  2011

Mike took his D90 along with him to the dump. He was hunkered down with it inside the camper shell just as this truck came by and stopped right in front of him.

Friday, December 2, 2011

San Rafael Sightems: A.M. Buildings

Building, Trees, Sunrise - San Rafael  2011

Brick Building, Sunrise - San Rafael  2011

Early morning sun.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Booth Issues

Broken Canopy Struts - Alameda County  2011

Canopy at Recycle Center - Marin County  2011

As noted before, Mike's canopy was severely damaged during some high winds in San Anselmo.

Alas, replacing the damaged struts didn't work, since at two subsequent events even more struts got broken. (Probably some basic structural damage.) The latest problem came at the Oakland Farmers Market: not only did two struts completely snap, but others got bent, on their way to snapping.

So the old canopy had to be trashed, unceremoniously dumped into the recycle center pit.

New one ordered from Costco, but not used yet.