Summer is here…

…and it’s getting hot outside!  Thankfully, the Carson Valley cools down at night, which helps keep the house comfortable!

I’ve had an exciting couple weeks since my last post.  I received an email from a museum in Roseville, California, asking if they could use some of my panoramas in their train diorama.  I’ll let you know when the display is ready!  I have note cards at the Dangberg Home Ranch Historic Park.  They’re the big size, so go get them.  I also got a call from a company looking for a picture for a proposal.  The image came out great and I wish them luck with their proposal.

I got out and did some long exposure/HDR stream shots.  They’re so much prettier when the vegetation has leaves and a little color.  I also spent last Sunday at Heritage Park in Gardnerville, shooting the Car Show and The Great Race lunch stop.  The pictures came out great, but my Canon 7D broke and is at the Canon Repair Center.  We hope it’s not fatal!  While I don’t think it broke because I was taking pictures of foreign cars and those made by the Evil Empire, I’m not ruling it out!

Take a look at the Heritage Park Car Show page for pictures of the car show, and The Great Race page for pictures of the race cars!  There are links to The Great Race website on both pages.

So, here’s a few images.  Enjoy – PHOTOROGR

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This is a Columbine flower. When I master ‘focus stacking,’ it’ll be a better picture.

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West Fork of the Carson River.

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More Carson River…

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The moss on the rocks and branches really made this picture for me!

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Great Race racer – Lincoln Continental – now that’s a great cruising machine!

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1966 GT350-H…rare and gorgeous. How would you like to drive this across country?

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My friends, Mike and Sharon Silvera, won ‘Spirit of the Show’ with their 1911 Chalmers! What a gorgeous car!

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Another friend, Mike King, with his classic Woody! Check out the rest of the show cars at the Heritage Park Car Show page!

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Up Close and Personal…

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Desert flower!

Well, my exploration into Close Up and Macro Photography has begun in a big way!  Sorry, I couldn’t resist the pun!

Rob Sheppard begins his book on Macro Photography this way, “…This truly is a different world for most people and most photographers.  When you and your camera get in close to things, what you discover can be amazing, unique, and remarkable.  We simply don’t usually spend time looking at most things around us with a close-up point of view.”  A few pages later, Rob describes this paradox, “By going small, you can go big, very big.  How is that possible?  By getting in close to the small things, that smaller majority, we actually see more of the beauty of the world.  The world becomes a bigger place!”

Not only am I developing a new view of the world, I’m developing a new set of photography skills as well.  Depth of field (DOF) is very different when you’re working in close.  Shoot a landscape at a small aperture opening and DOF goes for miles.  Shoot a flower at a small aperture and DOF is measured in centimeters and fractions of inches.  Hand held shooting is possible, but keep your expectations low.  The definition of ‘good light’ takes on a whole new meaning, however.  For example, mid-day light is very harsh and unforgiving to the landscape photographer and gives me fits when shooting wildlife.  Go for the small subjects, and mid-day light can be your friend.  For me, Macro and Close Up brings a new set of challenges, but it reinforces the same basic photography concepts by forcing me to use them in a different way.

Enough technical talk for now – let’s get to some pictures!

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I found this little fella’ working our new Catmint in the backyard.

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My lovely bride likes it cropped a lot closer…thoughts?

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This is a Macro of a Rose in our backyard. I gotta say, I’m putting fewer miles on the PHOTORANGER since the flowers in the yard are blooming!

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Red Hot Poker just starting to bloom. When it’s fully bloomed, the tips are red and the rest of the bloom is yellow. This is one of my favorite plants!

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We found this California Poppy at Topaz Lake. One of my few successful hand held macro shots!

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On the Thornless Hawthorne in our backyard. These flowers are gone now.

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When I started being serious about Macro, I rented a Macro lens and went looking for subjects. I drove Monitor Pass and found these beautiful flowers. Don’t ask me what they are – they’re just pretty!

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This is a Peony from our back yard. I made multiple exposures and merged them in Photomatix. With our flowers, that’s always dangerous because the wind moves everything. I got lucky this time!

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I found this Peony at the Dangberg Home Ranch Historic Park.

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Not a Macro – a Close Up! This is a headlight on a 1927 Willys Knight that I saw at a car show over the weekend. This is an HDR image processed in Photomatix.

Well, it hasn’t all been Macros and Close Ups.  I took a ride with my old retired guy ATV group the other day.  We drove east of Carson City to Silver Springs, then south towards Fort Churchill.  Just south of Buckland Station, we turned left into the high desert and unloaded the ATVs.  A short 11 miles later, we arrived at Hooten Well and took a break.

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This is a panorama looking west towards Cleaver Peak. The desert is green, but it was a very hot and dusty ride!

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Cleaver Peak with remains of one of the stone structures in the foreground.

Our ultimate destination was Salt Cave.  Native Americans used them for shelter and decorated the ceilings.

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…and I had to shoot them in Macro…yes, I need to work on my DOF and focusing…

My plan is to continue to be up close and personal for a while, with the occasional landscape and panorama.  HDR is a great tool, and I’m getting more comfortable with it.

For my LinkedIn friends, please consider endorsing me for Digital Photography.  Thanks in advance!

Until next time – Enjoy!  PHOTOROGR