Saturday, March 31, 2012

Day 91. March 31.

Day Ninety One. March 31. Picture # 91. "Mud" I do not have much I can say about this patch of mud, other than I took twenty exposures before I was happy with the composition and lighting. You can tell this is in full vivid color by the tiny single green leaf sprouting in one of the cracks. Canon Rebel XTI, handheld. Canon 28-135 lens. Focal length 28mm. f/3.5. ISO 400. Exposure 1/500 second.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Day 90. March 30.

Day Ninety. March 30. Picture # 90. " Shoes? ". In my many miles of driving on my photo outings I am constantly bemused and perplexed by tennis shoes hanging on power lines. I have seen shoes miles and miles away from any town. This particular pair is hanging above Spicewood Springs road in Austin, Texas. This is a nice pair of shoes. These are not some worn out cast offs. Canon Rebel XTI, handheld. Canon 75-300mm lens. Focal length 300mm. f/5.6. ISO 800. Exposure 1/800 second.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Day 89. March 29.

Day 89. March 29. Picture # 89. "Untitled". Another wildflower. Sorry after the dead dried drought altered landscape I am going to shoot this wonderful wildflower season we are having. Canon Rebel XTI, handheld. Canon 75-300mm lens. Focal length 300mm. f/5.6. ISO 400. Exposure 1/400 second.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Day 88. March 28.

Day Eighty Eight. March 28. Picture # 88. "Serendipty". It was raining as I left work today. I went down to the deserted end of Old Lampasa Trail to find some puddles with nice reflections, flowers or something. I messed around with some water droplets on leaves and spider webs but nothing seemed to really catch my eye, It started to rain so I put the camera in the truck still on the tripod and drove home. I climbed my stairs with my camera bag on my back and the camera and tripod were in my hand. Just as I got my keys out to unlock the door these two swallows decided to take a break on the railing. With the camera still attached to the tripod, I carefully lifted the camera to my eye and captured a few shots. Canon Rebel XTI, on tripod "handheld". Canon 28-135mm lens. f/5.6. ISO 400. Exposure 1/200 second. Flash -2.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Day 87. March 27.

Day Eighty Seven. March 27. Picture # 87. "Water Lily". This water lily is one of many hundreds blooming along the waters edge at Richard Garriott's Castleton Village. With yellow being my favorite color I was first drawn to this mass of flowers as the Sun was getting low in the sky. But as is so common with many of my pictures, the dark side won me over. So instead of a sea of bright yellow, I give you a lone flower in a pool of darkness. The green anole below watched me with suspicion from his concealed perch behind some leaves. Canon Rebel XTI, on monopod. Canon 75-300mm zoom lens. Focal length 240mm. f/5.6. ISO 400. Exposure 1/640 second.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Day 86. March 26.

Day Eighty Six. March 26. Picture # 86. "City of Gold" Austin skyline being turned into gold by the setting Sun. View is from the pedestrian bridge at Ladybird Lake at Mopac. I was wondering how many people were watching the sunset behind me from the buildings in front of me. Canon Rebel XTI, on tripod. Canon 28-135mm lens. Focal length 130mm. f/5.6. ISO 400. Exposure 1/15 second. 

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Day 85. March 25.

Day Eighty Five. March 25. Picture # 85. " Week END" Drove out to the Hill Country late in the day to shoot wildflowers. Put all my eggs in one basket shooting an incredible field of bluebonnets. Driving home I pulled down a empty side road and took a few more pictures of the sunset. Well today's picture is a sunset because I ended up not liking any of the blue bonnet pictures. But I did meet a professional photographer named  named Jery Hayes. He was shooting the same field of flowers. He is a fellow Canon fan but he had the latest and greatest gear. He had an iPad hanging on the fence and the camera was sending the pictures wirelessly to the iPad as he shot. He was viewing his pictures on the iPad and then making his adjustments. We had a nice visit but we both were running out of daylight. Canon Rebel XTI. Canon 28-135mm lens. Focal length 28mm. f/20. ISO 200. Exposure 1/60 second.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Day 84. March 24.

Day 84. March 24. Picture # 84. "Jolly Cemetery" This cemetery is in my apartment complex.I had lived in my complex for a fairly long time when my friend Tracy Jackson asked if I had visited the cemetery. I had no idea what she was talking about, so I went looking. Sure enough there was a little narrow break in the fence with a path that lead to this small fenced graveyard. It is named the "Jolly" cemetery. . Somehow a graveyard where I live seems to fit my personality. Canon Rebel XTI, on tripod. Canon 26-135mm lens. Focal length 70mm. F/29. ISO 400.Exposure 1/4 second.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Day 83. March 23.

Day 83. March 23. Picyute # 83. "Stripes". Yesterdays picture was blue bonnet flowers in deep shadow being back lit by filtered sunlight. Well today's picture is still using strong sunlight and shadows in a very different way. The gaps in the privacy fence at my apartment are allowing the afternoon light to create this abstract image. Canon Rebel XTI, handheld. Canon 28-135mm lens. Focal length 28mm. f/4. ISO 400. Exposure 1/320 second.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Day 82. March 22.

Day Eighty Two. March 22. Picture # 82. "Blue Bonnet". I had to take at least one blue bonnet picture. This is the state flower of Texas, and they grow everywhere. The lighting in this picture is natural. The Sun is starting to set throwing intense shadows on this patch of flowers. But there was a crack in the rock face that allowed a beam of sun light to back light this scene. While shooting flowers today I also shot a series of pictures of two vultures that I posted to The Nature Conservancy of Texas's Wall and also . Canon Rebel XTI, handheld. Canon 75-300mm lens. Focal length 75mm. f/5.6. ISO 400. Exposure 1/1250 second.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Day 81. March 21.

Day Eighty One. March 21. Picture # 81. "Untitled". Just a pretty early spring scene on one of the local creeks. Canon Rebel XTI. Canon 28-135mm. Focal length 117mm. f/5.6. ISO 400. Exposure 1/80 second.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Day 80 March 20.

Day Eighty. March 20. Picture # 80. "Untitled" The rains came during the night. Parts of central Texas received up to 6 inches of rain. Day 79 was of a sailboat sitting in Lake Travis against a backdrop of a drought exposed rock face. According to news reports the rain event last night will cause the water level in Lake Travis to rise about five feet. The article also stated that it will take almost forty more feet of water to reach normal levels. So in other words, Texas needs eight more rains like last night. Todays picture is of a rain swollen Bull Creek. The closeup detail of water in the top picture is the churned up bit of water in the lower right corner of the bottom picture as it spills over the edge of the water fall. The type of limestone formations in this area are often called shelf rocks because of their flat sidewalk like layers. The water is pouring off off the same layer of rock that allowed me to walk out and get this closeup image. Canon Rebel XTI, on tripod. Canon 18-55mm lens. Focal length 28mm. f/7.1. ISO 400. Exposure 1/200 second.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Day 79. March 19.

Day Seventy Nine. March 19. Picture # 79. "Untitled". The weather services have been warning central Texas for over a week about a serious set of storms that were to hit today. It has been cloudy and windy in Austin today but very little rain. After work, I drove out to Lake Travis to see if there were any impressive storm clouds. The sky was just grey and quite unremarkable. So I waited to see if any sunlight would pierce the clouds and light up the lake. Again, no such luck. I was about to leave when I noticed this sailboat snuggled up againt the rocks on the far side of the lake. The mast on this boat is around forty feet tall. The rocks behind the boat are underwater at normal lake levels. Keep in mind the lakes have come up some since the recent rains. Texas needs rain. Canon Rebel XTI, handheld. Canon 75-300mm lens. Focal length 300mm. f/5.6. ISO 400. Exposure 1/320 second.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Day 78. March 18.

Day Seventy Eight. March 18. Picture # 78. "Red, Cat". So much for edgy. I set the alarm for 5:30 AM today. I wanted to be down on Sixth Street as it awoke after the excesses of SXSW. I planned on rough edgy shots. Think high contrast black and white images of trash filled alley ways. Hung over street scenes with worn out people. Well all of those things did exist and I shot pictures of them. But life can surprise you some time. The city surprised me this morning with it's vitality. There were armies of workers cleaning out the alleys. Shop owners were restocking their stores as city workers were peeling the band stickers off of every surface. I stopped and bought a blueberry pastry and a microbrew rootbeer from a sidewalk cafe. As I ate my breakfast there was a steady stream of locals in and out of the shop. It was very nice just sitting there absorbing the feeling of rebirth and renewal that was so powerful that I felt there must be some way to capture it in an image. My internal filters were reset. I went looking for color and life. I noticed people. There were three happy young people sitting on the curb sharing a single sandwich. A man slowly walked along studying the deep cracks in the sidewalk stopping occasionally to fish a coin or a shiny trinket out with pliers. A sanitation worker dancing as he pushed a trash can of soapy water along washing what seemed like every object he encountered. A man fell in step with me and told me he had been watching me. I explained I had come down to document the aftermath of SXSW in pictures. He said he was there for the same reason but he just wanted to see it. He had no camera. We decided he had an obligation to show other people what he was seeing by using words. I wondered as he walked away, would it take him a thousand words for each picture I shared ? Lets hope so. There are many stories to tell. Canon Rebel XTI, hand held. Canon 28-135mm lens. Focal length 135mm. f/5.6. ISO 1600. Exposure 1/250 second.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Day 77. March 17.

Day Seventy Seven. March 17. Picture # 77. "The Swimming Hole". The recent rains have helped ease the drought but all the lakes are still extremely low. But on a lot smaller scale the local swimming holes have filled up again! This inviting scene can be found where Bull Creek intersects the Capital of Texas Highway. The park is free and the hours run from 5:00 AM to 10:00 PM. There are no lifeguards, and like many Texas parks there are few rules and swim at your own risk. I like Texas. I hate rules that are designed to protect me from my self. Canon Rebel XTI, on tripod. Canon 18-55mm lens. Focal length 18mm. f/22. ISO 200. Exposure 1/3 second.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Day 76. March 16.

Day Seventy Six. March 16. Picture # 16. "SXSW". Seventy five pictures in a row have been taken with my Canon camera and edited on my computer. Day seventy six is going to be a bit different. I take a lot of pictures with my iPhone. I also edit a lot of pictures on the iPhone using an assortment of editing apps. Today was extremely busy for me. But I sound a small window of opportunity, while waiting on hold for a film crew to get set up. I noticed this highly detailed scene sharing the lot with our project. As I waited I took the picture with my phone and edited it with my Photo Toaster app. I then texted it to my friend Tracy Jackson who was interested in the days shoot because she is a Intuit Quickbooks Pro Advisor. Her company Found Time had been notified by Intuit of the days event. So I was texting her bits and pieces of my day. She then texted back to me "todays picture?". I thought why not ? Then the producer said go and the action began. Custom Creation the company I work for was installing a barber shop set for Intuit GoPayment!/IntuitGoPayment/app_309305892458884 and Birds Barbershop!/birdsbarbershop?sk=wall. The filming and setup were part of a SXSW promotion for GoPayment.There was a film crew filming the entire event from our crews building of the set through the entire day of hair cuts finally ending with us removing the set this evening. The iPhone picture below is the set in use. The chairs were full all day and it was a success for everyone involved. Shot with iPhone. Edited with Photo Toaster.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Day 75.March 15.

Day Seventy Five. March 15. Picture # 75. "Beacon in the Night". A long day. I am tired and just want to go home. I need to find the energy to shoot and edit a picture for today. I am drawn to Cupprimo's wecoming light like the lighthouses of old helped sailors to find a safe harbor. Erica, Austin's friendliest barista makes me a chai latte that somehow revives me and my sagging spirits. It only seemed fitting that this wonderful neighborhood coffee shop be my picture for today. The quality is not great. It is more of a candid quick grab kind of picture. But I believe it captures the mood just about right. If only my picture could have been as perfect as my chai latte. Thanks, Erica. Thanks Cupprimo. Canon Rebel XTI, handheld. Canon 28-135mm lens. Focal length 65mm. f/5. ISO 16, Exposure 1/250 second.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Day 74. March 14.

Day Seventy Four. March 14. Picture # 14. "Untitled" There is an optimistically placed for sale sign in front of this building outside of Volente Beach. The exterior is natural flat limestone that was laid with considerable skill. I originally stopped to get a picture of the stonework and the afternoon storm clouds.As I looked inside the building something about the scene attracted my interest. This happens to me occasionally, I will like a scene and take the picture but I can not figure out what caught my eye until editing begins. Later, I knew that I missed the shot within the shot. The window to the right is creating an abstract frame for the red bud blooming in the background. I cropped the picture below out of the original to demonstrate how a single element can make the rest of a picture be of interest to me. The quality of the cropped image is low. If I had seen the picture while I was on the scene, I would have set up the shot specifically to take the widow and the red bud tree. Canon Rebel XTI, on tripod. Canon 18-55mm lens.Bower Superwide lens. Focal length 34mm

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Day 73. March 13.

Day Seventy Three. March 13. Picture # 73. "Pink Boat". It is hard to see in this picture but this boat had tailfins. This boat was produced in the late 1950s. Many sport boats from that era had fins that rivaled the cars. This classic boat is in great condition considering it's age and the unrelenting Texas sun. This jewel can be found outside of Volente Beach along side of Lake Travis. Cut into the steep hillside there is overflow parking for the Sandy Creek Marina, . There are a few empty trailers and this one boat parked in the weeds. Canon Rebel XTI, on tripod. Canon 18-55mm lens. Bower Superwide lens. Focal length 34mm. f/22. ISO 200. Dual exposures 1/60/1/2 second.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Day 72. March 12.

Day Seventy Two. March 12. Picture # 72. "Coin of the Realm". The pursuit of money has been the priority this week. Between my day job with Custom Creation, which is very busy with SXSW, and doing some side projects is making it tough to get out and get the shot. Canon Rebel XTI, on tripod. Canon 18-55mm lens. Focal length 55mm. f/5.6. ISO 200. Exposure 1/4 second.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Day 71. March 11.

Day Seventy One. March 11. Picture # 71. "Daylight Savings Time". Just a reminder that the clocks have moved ahead one hour today. This clock first belonged to my grandparents then my mother and now me. I plan on passing it on to a fourth generation of my family. It actually runs, but I do not keep it wound up. I am content with it being right twice a day. Canon Rebel XTI, handheld. Canon 28-135mm lens. Focal length 117mm.f/5.6. ISO 800.flash +2. Exposure 1/200.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Day 70. March 10.

Day Seventy. March 10. Picture # 70. "The Rain Stopped" I woke up this morning to the sound of rain on the roof. I drove through hard rain on the way to the convention center where I was working to set up exhibits for South by Southwest. . When I left work late in the afternoon, I was soaked as I walked out to my truck. It was still raining as I made my trip out to Richard Garriott's Lake Austin property. Sitting in my truck with the rythmatic thumping of the windshield wipers keeping time for the rain drops on my roof, dampened my spirits and expectations of getting any pictures. I must have dozed off because the loud squeal of wipers dragging across a dry window brought me back from whatever place the hypnotic sound of the rain had taken me. The picture of the day had been hiding behind the rain. Canon Rebel XTI, on tripod. Canon 28-135mm lens. Focal length 136mm. f/5.6. ISO 200. Exposure 1/40 second.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Day 69. March 9

Day Sixty Nine. March 9. Picture # 69."Red Violin". This is another one of the things I have stopped "seeing" on my daily commute. I had admired it when I first noticed it 7 years ago. But over time it faded into the familiar. I believe the physical things that do not change in a person's life become the visual equivalent of white noise. I had set a goal for Day 69. I was going to find something on my morning commute that had faded from my recognition. Almost everyone has art of some sort hanging in their house. I challenge you to go stand in front of one of your pictures and really look at it and try to re-connect with the excitement of the first time you hung it on your wall. Then hold on to that feeling and carry a fresh new awareness into your daily life. Make your everyday world into a fresh and wonderful place. Remember " no one is blinder than he who will not see" U2. Canon Rebel XTI, hand held. Canon 28-135mm lens. Focal length 90mm. f/5.6. ISO 400. Exposure 1/16 second.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Day 68. March 8.

Day Sixty Eight. March 8. Picture # 68. "Bone Daddy"s". Sitting in heavy traffic not going anywhere. All because a little rain seems to cause some type of mass hysteria that manifests it self through a complete failure of anyone to drive over three miles per hour. Silver lining ? I could actually look around instead of my normal "high alert" mode that I usually use to navigate the video game that is my commute. When I saw how exotic the dark storm clouds were making the restuarant's neon look I somehow convinced myself to abandon my rightful spot in the cattle drive and exit the highway. I have only eaten at Bone Daddy's one time when a friend suggested I meet him there for dinner. Think Hooters meets BBQ. Food was good but way to noisy to catch up and have conversation with a friend. But their lights do catch the eye on a stormy morning! Canon Rebel XTI, on tripod. Canon 18-55mm lens. Focal length 18mm. f/18. ISO 800. Exposure 1/4 second.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Day 67. March 7.

Day Sixty Seven. March 7. Picture # 67. "Busy Bee". The mountain laurel is in full bloom right now in the Hill Country. Every bush has its own collection of pollinators with honey bees being the most common. This little guy seemed to be the most focused bee of the bunch. He would land on a new clump of flowers and would investigate each flower before flying to a new spot. He was the easiest to try to shoot because unlike the other bees, this one was not flying all around the bush. He seemed content to methodically work a small area of the mountain laurel. Canon Rebel XTI handheld, Canon 75-300mm lens. Focal length 300mm. f/10. ISO 1600. Exposure 1/400 second.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Day 66. March 6

Day Sixty Six. March 6. Picture # 66. "Untitled". It's just a picture of a flower. There is nothing inspiring about this picture. I was having a conversation with a friend about how mood and expectations affect our pictures. This is a busy time for me between my day job and side work. Finding the 3 to 6 hours a day to shoot, edit and write the blog is proving challenging. A shout out to all the mothers out there, I do not know how you do it ! Your day starts early and ends late 24/7. Wow. But everyone still expects for you to show up everyday and be in a good mood. I am looking for that type of energy. I want to post a good picture everyday. I want it to be obvious that thought and care went into each picture. Sticking with the mom analogy, I forgot to put the sandwich in the bag lunch today. The chips and the cookie are there but no meat. Sorry. Thanks goes out to; Tracy Jackson & my sister Joan Styczynski for my understanding of how hard a mother works and how you make it look so easy. Lori Whittaker, for an interesting Facebook converstaion on how mood and personal perceptions reflect in the pictures we take. And Gary Cross, good text last night. Thanks for having the guts to hold my feet to the fire. You are right. I need to shoot true my my heart not what I think will please the crowd. Camera settings ? it does not matter. It's just a flower, the lunch bag is a little light today. We will do better tomorrow,

Monday, March 5, 2012

Day 65. March 5.

Day Sixty Five. March 5. Picture # 65. "Untitled" The call of the road was strong today. I drove northeast out of Austin today. Every time I encountered an intersection I turned down the road less traveled. It felt like I could have driven forever. I was so enjoying the empty roads and the beautiful green country I was passing through, that I neglected to take many pictures. I had left the flat treeless topography close to Austin and was driving through woods as the sun was setting. There were flat beams of sunlight shining through gaps in the forest giving the trees a mystical quality. Canon Rebel XTI, handheld. Canon 18-55mm lens. Focal length 18mm. f/4. ISO 400. Exposure 1/320. 

Hmmm? I am somewhere? I just do not know where.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Day 64. March 4.

Day Sixty Four. March 4. Picture # 64. "Glassy Stare". Slept in this morning. Poured a cup of Texas pecan coffee and walked out on my balcony to enjoy the spring like weather. As I slowly savored my coffee, the sun continued rising causing light to move across my shelf holding a few iron & glass art objects. It was fun watching the glass objects absorb the Sun's magic and come to life. I did not want to get up but it was obvious that today's picture was right outside my door. Canon Rebel XTI, hand held. Canon 28-135mm lens. Focal length 53mm. f/4.5. ISO 400. Exposure 1600.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Day 63. March 3.

Day SixtyThree. March 3. Picture # 63. "Untitled" The much needed recent rain came at a perfect time for the wildflowers. The early season flowers are already open. This should be an amazing central Texas wildflower season. Below is just a small sample of wildflowers from previous years. Canon Rebel XTI on tripod. 28-135mm lens. Focal length 60mm. f/2. ISO 400. Exposure1/100 second