Monday, January 31, 2011

Monday Phoebe Blogging

Been a while since we've seen a phoebe on the blog.

Photo: Phoebe—Marin County, 2010

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Snow-Covered Branches

It snowed a lot in December. Nothing much to speak of in January.

Photos: Snow-Covered Branches, Drift─Sierra Nevada, 2010; Snow-Covered Branches─Sierra Nevada, 2010

Saturday, January 29, 2011


Taken in the town of Arnold where we stayed for a few days just after Christmas. Arnold is located at an elevation where winter storms are just as likely to bring rain instead of snow. Luckily for us it had just snowed so we were able to go for a neighborhood walk in the frosty landscape.

Photo: Shoveling Snow—Sierra Nevada, 2010

Friday, January 28, 2011


For a late-December snow excursion I rented these MSR snowshoes from REI. Actually worked quite well! We sank into deeper snow, but the expert at REI said that "All snowshoes sink into deep snow."

Photo: Snowshoes−Sierra Nevada, 2010

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Water Tower

In Atlanta, waiting to take off, I stared out the airplane window: the water tower in the distance kept disappearing behind torrential downpours, then reappearing as the sky kept getting progressively darker. Takeoff was delayed multiple times; when we finally took off the evening was upon us—we arrived in San Francisco just before midnight.

Staring out at the darkness beyond the window during the flight I was struck by how ubiquitous the lights of civilization were—the only place where I couldn't see any electric lights was on the Utah-Nevada border area.

Photo: Water Tower (From Plane)—Atlanta, 2010

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Laundromat, Rain

I was underneath an adjacent gas station overhang trying to keep dry. I used the rotating LCD on the Canon G12 to compose the shot.

Photo: Laundromat, Rain—Atlanta, 2010

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Banner Photo Issue . . .

. . . is now fixed!

North Carolina Route

Our route took us going north from Georgia through a corner of North Carolina. Needless to say, we stopped frequently to view the autumn foliage. This photo was taken from one side of the road looking across to the other side.

Photo: Trees, Sunlight—North Carolina, 2010

Monday, January 24, 2011

Monday Horse Blogging

A nice-looking Friesian horse, in fact. Interesting Wikipedia article here.

Photo: Friesian Horse—Marin County, 2010

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Banner Photo Update

Others have been having the same issue: "My header image has been working fine and I just removed it and re-uploaded the same exact image and now it's blurry."

Response: "This has now been escalated to Google Engineering."

Knoxville Sunrise

. . . taken during an early-morning walk in search of Starbucks.

Click to enlarge, study and ponder.

Photo: Sunrise—Knoxville, 2010

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Banner Photo Technical Glitch

Hmmm . . . something's not right. Banner pix are coming out blurry & indistinct. Will have to work on it.


Crosswalk at Santa Monica & Formosa. Taken with the Olympus E-510, discovered fairly recently when I was going through some old files. (Not that a photo from 2009 is necessarily old, mind you.)

Photo: Crosswalk—Los Angeles, 2009

Friday, January 21, 2011

Self-Portraits, Georgia & Tennessee

. . . taken in Georgia and Tennessee (Decatur and Knoxville) last year.

Photos: Table & Self-Portrait—Georgia, 2010; Children, Self-Portrait—Tennessee, 2010

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Abrams Creek #2

OK, so the upper photo was arranged. The waterfall at the end of the hike was nice enough, but unfortunately divided into sun and shade. There's a nice photo here.

Photos: Red Leaves—Tennessee, 2010; Roots, Leaves, Creek—Tennessee, 2010

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Abrams Creek #1

Taken on a day hike that followed Abrams Creek to Abrams Waterfall. There was a little too much sunlight for Mike's taste; sunlight coming through the forest created high-contrast areas.

Photo: Leaves & Creek−Tennessee, 2010

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Pigeon Forge

Very surreal, although I'm not sure that "surreal" is the correct term.

Block after block of cheesy interesting attractions. Block after block after block.

The traffic coming into town was staggering. Probably in order to truly appreciate Pigeon Forge you need to spend some quality time there. Trouble is, I'm booked up for the foreseeable future.

Photos: Dollywood—Tennessee, 2010; Bears—Tennessee, 2010; Traffic—Tennessee, 2010

Monday, January 17, 2011

Monday Yellow-Rumped Warbler Blogging

On our fence in the back yard.

You'd think that if there were warblers hanging around, you'd be able to walk outside and hear, you know, a bunch of warbling.

But no.

Photo: Yellow-Rumped Warbler—Marin County, 2010

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Waffle House

Finally . . . after missing out on Waffle House opportunities in Georgia, a Waffle House appeared as if by magic next to our hotel in Knoxville. We had dinner there along with the regulars!

And of course, we ordered our hashbrowns "scattered, smothered and covered."

Photos: Waffle House (exterior)—Knoxville, 2010; Waffle House (interior)—Knoxville, 2010; Waffle House Menu—Knoxville, 2010

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Lookout Mountain—Chattanooga

The Battle of Lookout Mountain was fought November 24, 1863, as part of the Chattanooga Campaign of the American Civil War. Union forces under Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker assaulted Lookout Mountain, Chattanooga, Tennessee, and defeated Confederate forces commanded by Maj. Gen. Carter L. Stevenson. Lookout Mountain was one engagement in the Chattanooga battles between Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant's Military Division of the Mississippi and the Confederate Army of Tennessee, commanded by Gen. Braxton Bragg. It drove in the Confederate left flank and allowed Hooker's men to assist in the Battle of Missionary Ridge the following day, which routed Bragg's army, lifting the siege of Union forces in Chattanooga, and opened the gateway into the Deep South.

The afternoon we were there was blustery and windy. Later that day: heavy rain and a tornado.

Photos: Cannon Overlooking Chattanooga—Tennessee, 2010; Stone Ledge, Lookout Mountain—Tennessee, 2010

Friday, January 14, 2011

B Street Self Portrait

Self portrait taken on B Street in San Rafael.

Photo: Self-Portrait—Marin County, 2010

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Tennessee River . . .

. . . seen from the Ijams Nature Center and from downtown Knoxville.

Photos: Branches & Reflections, Tennessee River—Knoxville, 2010; Bridge—Knoxville, 2010

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Knoxville Market Square

Scenes from Knoxville's Market Square during the Farmers Market there.

The StoryCorps trailer was there, but Mike thankfully managed to avoid it.

The ice cream was good.

Photos: StoryCorps—Knoxville, 2010; Ice Cream—Knoxville, 2010

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The One-Lens Nikon D90

So I'm using the Nikon D90 as a fixed-lens prosumer camera akin to my 2006 Olympus C-8080. On this type of camera the lens is a high quality zoom with a decent wide-to-telephoto range. And, it's permanently fixed to the camera body: you can't switch lenses as you can with an SLR. One of the great advantages of the fixed lens is the avoidance of dust on the sensor. I've followed this particular prosumer model in utilizing the Nikon D90. I purchased the D90 body along with a Nikkor 16-85mm lens. When I received the two packages from B&H I affixed the lens to the camera body, and there it has stayed. With the 16-85 in place I haven't felt the need to purchase extra lenses. The interesting thing about it is that its zoom range, the equivalent of 24-127 in 35mm format, is actually better at the wide end than the set of three lenses I had in the 60s and 70s when using a Nikon-F (28mm, 50mm and 135mm). Please note that we will not enter the zoom vs. prime discussion at this point.

So I've denied myself the exquisite pleasure of purchasing many extra highly expensive lenses, along with the pleasure of carrying them around. Actually, I find the switching-out of lenses to be very tedious and a serious impediment to the creative process. Also note that not having a collection of lenses means that changing brands is much more doable. As I've mentioned before, the combined weight of this particular lens/body combo is more than I'd like, so I've been keeping tabs on the recent batch of light-weight quality cameras from Olympus, Panasonic and others.

I wouldn't mind having more in the "telephoto" range, for birds and such. But, oh well! You can't have everything!

Photos: Nikon D90 with Nikkor 16-85 lens—Marin County, 2010; Olympus C-8080—Marin County, 2008; Logistics Manager Camera Case: Room for Camera Bodies & Lenses

Monday, January 10, 2011

Monday Horse Blogging

. . . and F150 blogging.

And self-portrait blogging.

Photo: F150, Horse & Self-Portrait—Marin County, 2010

Sunday, January 9, 2011

New Years Day Hike

First pix of 2011! Rained throughout Barbara's annual hike.

But Mike remained unwet, but slightly damp, underneath his Marmot Precip. The Canon G12, as well, did OK hidden underneath the Precip.

As always, over to Barbara's afterwards for liquid refreshments, as well as some delicious pozole.

Photos: Trail & Oaks, Rain—Marin County, 2011; Madrone—Marin County, 2011

Saturday, January 8, 2011


The text in question reads, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." King James version, of course.

To be honest, though, John 3:16 really doesn't speak to the issue of Hell. For that you have to go to James Joyce's Father Arnall in Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man: "Hell is a strait and dark and foul-smelling prison, an abode of demons and lost souls, filled with fire and smoke. The straitness of this prison house is expressly designed by God to punish those who refused to be bound by His laws. In earthly prisons the poor captive has at least some liberty of movement, were it only within the four walls of his cell or in the gloomy yard of his prison. Not so in hell. There, by reason of the great number of the damned, the prisoners are heaped together in their awful prison, the walls of which are said to be four thousand miles thick."

Sure and begorrah! That's tellin' them!

Photo: Question—North Carolina, 2010

Friday, January 7, 2011

Georgia Afternoon

Taken at a country store as the autumn sun was starting its descent.

Photos: Apples—Georgia, 2010; Pumpkin Porch—Georgia, 2010

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Canon G12 Doomsday Clock

OK, I don't know what this is.

At random and unpredictable times the Canon G12, when powered on, will show the display as seen above. It's been happening since I got the camera a few months ago; it'll disappear upon turning the camera off and then on again. Up until now I've never had another camera available to record the event; luckily, I was able to borrow Barbara's nice new S95 the other night to take a quick snap.

I don't know what the display is supposed to represent. Although it doesn't match up with the time of day it does seem to be some sort of clock . . . (?)

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

. . . from the archives #63: Do Not Enter—Pasadena, 1973

As I was driving on the (very primitive) Arroyo Seco Freeway I came upon this scene at the freeway's end in Pasadena. I remember having to look for a parking spot and walking back with my Nikon F trying to find a vantage point from which to take the photograph.

Photograph: Do Not Enter—Pasadena, 1973

Monday, January 3, 2011

Monday Crow Blogging

I used Dan's Secret Photoshop Method to process this photo.

It involves the Shadow/Highlight tool, an adjustment layer and the opacity slider. That's all I can say.

Photo: Crow—Marin County, 2010

Sunday, January 2, 2011

2010 Best Seller

This is one of my first digital photographs. These flowers were in front of a florist’s shop on Solano Avenue in Berkeley; what caught my eye was not the flowers so much as it was the arrangement of the pails.

And, my best-selling print in 2010! Therefore, somewhat ironic that I took the photo with an Olympus 4-megapixel point-and-shoot camera. Also ironic: another 4-MP shot is also selling right along with the flower pix.

Photo: Flowers—Berkeley, 2004

Saturday, January 1, 2011

New Years Day—Toyon Berries

For New Years Day: toyon berries, coyote brush and oak.

Photo: Toyon Berries—Marin County, 2010