While "pictures" are worth a thousand words, occasionally words aid in conveying the message. Here we present some of our thoughts. Enjoy!
It's been over four months since I last posted here. This interval has been filled with lots of activities: some travel, a new puppy, some photography, birthdays, holidays, a couple of guided tours for Sandhill Cranes in the Delta, some other stuff and teaching a beginners class in bird photography! Below are a couple of videos that will give you a flavor of this passage in time. Click the icon in the lower right corner to view full screen. [wgm]
Bosque del Apache, New Mexico - November 8 - 12, 2012
Look what we found in New Mexico!
Bosque del Apache, New Mexico - January 23 - 29, 2013
It has been a little over 3 months since we were blessed with the arrival of little Noah. How quickly he grows and changes. Today we fixed a brunch for for John and Liz and took turns holding Noah as we ate asparagus, mushroom and red bell pepper quiche and drank coffee from the french press. While we were there I wanted to take a few shots of Noah and his Dad.
Despite all of life's challenges, heavy work loads, the purchasing of their first home and the general craziness of our world today, here was a father and his son sharing all that really matters. I was lucky enough to witness and capture this tender moment between father and son. Wouldn't the world be a better place if we all followed their example.
You have to count me lucky and blessed on at least two counts. wgm
A little after 11:00 AM I heard a faint, but familiar sweet sound while working in my outdoor office. Excitedly I panned the sky searching for the source. Above and headed south was a flock of Sandhills, returning to the Delta from their summering grounds in Northern California and Southern Oregon. It's been months since I last heard them leave, flying north, leaving us for the summer and singing their goodbyes. It is such a sweet sound and a heart warming sight to hear and see them again. Amazingly as I checked on the time of sighting their departure it was within minutes of the time of their departure exactly 199 days later.
Welcome home, we are so looking forward to communing with you again. - WGM
Last Saturday, Bill and I went to the home of newborn Anton Whetstone in Sacramento to photograph the 7-week old Anton and his family. They had joined us at Bill's house on July 4th and we talked with them about doing family portraits. They were very eager to do so. This was the perfect family to work with, [Anah - Mom, James - Dad, Hannelore - daughter, and Anton - son]; they were marvelous.
However, the inevitable problems occur: it's challenging to focus on photo quality when trying to catch a smile out of a frisky five year old, while watching her Dad's concerned face as the baby falls asleep and the Mom maintains her perfect smile. It's odd at best. I think with better mastery of camera and lights, I can manage the cacophony of activity while catching the best moments. I suspect that family shoots, with young children, should be limited to about 30 minutes, then some other activity should be arranged that might allow some candid shots. Bill and I are discussing this as, from time to time, we seek to photograph family and friends. After the group shots, I held the baby as Bill photographed Anah. Anah had a career as a Paris model in the 90's, and she knows how to pose and hold a pose. She said she'd love to work with us again, and I would like that very much. I find that working with a single subject can be great fun. - CC
Today we explored use of the macro lense with glass and colored liquids. Using a tripod with remote trigger, setting the camera to "live view" helped in focusing the photo. However, Bill found it necessary to switch off "live view" [while preserving the focus], then shoot in manual mode with a very high f-stop (f 25) and long exposures of 25 to 30 seconds. This achieved the best results. We had not done this before. In post-processing the photos, it was fun to find "paintings" in the photographs. Some of the interesting textures are due to the flaws in the glass. Below are examples. CC