Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Pic for a blah day...no sun until 2pm today!

This "June Gloom" in March is for the birds. Especially if I want/need a bright sunny day for max contrast of wild flowers in bloom. Sadly the sun came out too late to do me any good with today's walk. Yes, I got exercise and some fresh air, but I didn't take the camera as it was just too gloomy for the bright and sunny frame of mind I was in.

So when the sun did oblige and show up this afternoon I just strolled in the garden and found this "Golden Celebration" English Rose by David Austin in full bloom and grabbed a pic.

Post for Monday 3/29

First Iris of spring has opened its beautiful bud for all to enjoy!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Friday, March 26, 2010

Double Delight ala orton

Just one of a few early bloomers in my garden. Post processed from RAW in the Orton style. Love the soft romantic glow the process gives to the final image.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Gnat on a wildflower

Can't plant stuff like that, wish I could, but there it was when I looked close through the old lens a couple of gnats feasting on the sugars being released by the bud.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Bush Sunflower past and present

I love how this plant can have a rebirth in the middle of its charred remains from a fire a year ago.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

kalanchoe blooming

These little succulent beauties naturalize wonderfully here in sunny temperate So. Cal.

Pic for the day...it arrived

A while back I grabbed a pic of a grill ornament on an old roadster. The ornament was from the 1932 LA Olympics. A friend and fellow blogger Will Campbell saw it and wanted to use it for a T-shirt. Today my copy came in the mail. Am thrilled and will wear it proudly. His work in 'shop to isolate and halo-ize the ornament is terrific and looks awesome on a black"T".

Sorry the image is poor...it was done with the trusty cell phone cam.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Pic(s) for Sunday 3-21-2010

Same wild flower blooming in the desert just a couple of different angles. Cute, tiny little flowers like this lined the desert in PS over the weekend.

I like the first shot as it captures so well the harsh environment they live in, the second as its up close and personal in of the bud and bloom phase on the same plant.

Pic for Saturday 3-20-2010

This weekend was "Duel in the Desert" in Palm Springs. As luck would have it I was in a catch 22 with the laptop. I needed an update but couldn't access the internet until it was done. The internet at the hotel needed me to sign on with them first before I could proceed. End result was no 'net connection for the weekend which left me a little bummed.

I love existing light photo, even with fast moving sports. The blur of the players in motion conveys the action of the moment so well. (#15 is my youngest in action).

Friday, March 19, 2010

pic of the day...

Few things are as reassuring and magnificent as a tree leafing out in spring. Of course with it comes pollen which means allergies, benadryl and migraines for some. Moment to treasure or dread? You decide.

I forgot to post for 3/18/2010

Busy date day with the lovely better half and completely forgot to post an image for Thursday.

This weekend should be hectic in the desert and not certain if I'll have a reliable 'net connection to post. We shall see what transpires.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Blue Paint Trail and an exercise in framing

Funny how a shift from vertical to horizontal framing changes the nature and impact of a subject. Thank gawd that digital camera technology is advanced to the point where the camera senses the shift and automatically flip-flops your files so they are viewed correctly. How many remember the day you had to go through and manually do it so your thumbnail views were correct?

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Phallic or yonic you decide. I love the sweeping lines leading to the pistol of this lily in full bloom.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Photo for the weekend

The weekend involved some excuses. Sorta lame but it happened. The folks came for the weekend and I spent it entertaining and cooking for them. So...no time out with the camera.

The image was shot at the end of last week and worked in the Orton style. Love the contrast between the scarlet flowers and the brilliant green of the out of focus foliage. No doubt which is the star attraction in the image. The soft in and out of focus of the flower itself is just what I was looking to get, then again the soft impressionist view of the world is what I do best.

Friday, March 12, 2010

HDR to the rescue...dark shadows and dark plants

This image wouldn't have been able to be captured and presented with all this detail had I just shot it for shadows or highlights. To much contrast for the limited range of a digital SLR let alone good old silver based films.

To capture all the details in the shadows and highlights and in-between I bracketed the exposures +/- 2 stops. An HDR File was generated in CS2 then tone mapped in Photomatix. The final post processing was done with virtual photographer to clear out the cyan haze and warm up the shadows a bit.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

First Rose of Spring

It is of the English Rose by David Austin named "Wenlock" . It is blooming a few weeks too early but I'll take it along with the other signs that spring and warmer weather is near.

As I love the soft romantic look of the orton style I opted to use that as part of my post processing from the RAW file. In simplest terms I create a duplicate layer as a new background, adjust saturation, increase exposure and blur the layer. Then I use the blending tool, on multiply most of the time, to create the final image. It is then flattened and run through Virtual Photographer to manipulate it further so it takes on the look of the old chromes (and isn't it a shame Kodachrome is going the way of the dinosaur) printed on Cibrachrome print material.

Enjoy my first shot at spring, hope it adds to your day a little bit with the promise of good things to come.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Monday, March 08, 2010

Cactus blossom bud

Spring is oh so close. Even the cactus along the river are getting into the act and displaying tiny buds that will be blossoms in the weeks to come.

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Late afternoon clouds

Lazy day, sprinkles and lots of clouds punctuated with rays of brilliant sun made for a perfect day. Late in the day the clouds take on such subtle color, especially this time of year.

Pic of the day for Saturday 3/6/10

Make that a painting. Rather than being out photographing I was one of two featured artists at the Paint n Play 2 Art Studio and Gallery last night. What Heather and I did was a live painting demo. We each did a back ground wash then proceeded to swap and paint on another layer on the others canvas, then repeated. After 4 rounds we had the "finished" products you see here.

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Pic for Friday 3-5-2010

Sorry about the delay...I was so busy with prep work for a reception Saturday March 6 I completely forgot to post a daily photo. Today's daily photo is my world at the gallery I am co-hosting with a ceramic artist, Heather Shaw who writes the "Art Girl Monrovia" blog.

Heather and I are doing a twist on the reception as it will be a bit interactive. We will have paint brushes in hand and work on a shared canvas with the audience telling us the colors to use. IT should be an interesting night. The final result will be auctioned to benefit the Monrovia Association of Fine Arts.

For those interested here are the details for tonights reception.
Paint N Play 2 Art Studio and Gallery
418 S Myrtle Ave, Monrovia CA 91016

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Hawks return means spring is one step closer

Not that our winter has been especially wet, colder than usual but not brutal like back east, I will take the first sign of spring coming when I get it.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Three images from Manifest Equality...

Three HDR images that I did while at the Manifest Equality exhibit in Hollywood. (Gads, do I really live here, pinch me sometimes I find it hard to believe I'm in such a vibrant city).

All three were shot with the intention of doing HDR images. I started by bracketing the exposure +/- 2 stops then using the subsequent RAW files to be combined into an HDR image with Photomatix. The same program did the tonemapping which I used adjusted to have great detail across the tone range by adjusting the microcontrast to the max. In the two outdoor images I ran them through Virtual Photographer to get rid of the slight blue/cyan cast caused by the blue sky interacting with the shadows. Voila...three images from a show that left me speechless. (All the details on the show over at metblogs).

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Star with a tail

Or would it be a tale if this picture is worth a 1000 words?

Monday, March 01, 2010

"Hero Wage T-bird"

Of course they had to add in the "smoke weed" which makes me wonder what the entire message is about. I wonder if "T-bird" is the car or the cheap wine?

The image was shot bracketed with HDR file generation in mind. That way I get to keep shadow detail and highlight detail in place while controlling the amount of contrast and shadow depth in this bright contrasty scene.