Monday, March 31, 2014

Week Thirteen - "Framed Washington Memorial"

Looks like Beth's Liam is full of personality!

"Framed Washington Memorial"


Continuing in Washington, I managed to see all of those iconic structures and many of them from the inside. With ideal spring weather, a walk around the National Mall was the perfect way to see the area.

Washington Monument was still being repaired after a 5.9 magnitude earthquake back in 2011. Even with the scaffolding, it was quite impressive. As I was walking along I looked back over my shoulder to see this reflection of the 555 ft. obelisk. As I readied my camera, I noticed some branches overhead By stepping back a few feet, I was able to use them to frame the architectural marvel.

Guest Photographer - Tony Mistretta

"The Vineyards"

 The “Vineyards” photo was taken in the small town of B├╝hlertal, where
we stayed.  The town was situated in the Black Forest area of
Germany and was surrounded by these hillside vineyards which were
very beautiful.  Someone told me that the grapes were the type that are
used for Reisling wine.  I photographed the vineyards on several
occasions during the week in which we stayed, but there was one
morning when the light and sky were working in my favor more than
the other times.  On that morning, I was mostly shooting into the light
because I liked the dramatic effect of the backlighting on the clouds
and landscape.  I shot in HDR mode as I often do for landscapes to
capture the maximum detail in the shadows, mid-tones and highlights. 
My HDR exposure settings were -1, -3 and +1 stops from what my
evaluative meter indicated was the correct setting.  I used a wide
angle lens to emphasize the size of the vineyards and the big sky
behind them. 

I choose to share this because it brings back fond memories of where
we stayed and I’ve never seen anything quite like this anywhere else.

Thanks, Tony

Don't forget to send me some of your favorites from 2013.

Next Week's Guest - Michael Perchard
{for a return engagement}

Weekly Photo Suggestion:

  Don't be afraid to take several photos of the same scene at different exposures, angles, or apertures.

 A Pearl of Wisdom. . .

Jones' Law

The man who can smile when things go wrong -- has thought of someone he can blame it on. 

Monday, March 24, 2014

Week Twelve - "Vietnam Memorial Wall"

Several followers had been in similar looking diners. Milt's image brought back fond memories!

"Vietnam Memorial Wall"


After spending a week of timeshare on the Outer Banks, we stopped in Washington, DC. Are you sitting down? This was my FIRST visit to our nation's capital! Sure, I have seen all of the pictures of these iconic buildings on television and in the movies but nothing compares to seeing them up close and in person!

One of the most memorable moments in DC was the Vietnam Memorial Wall. Hundreds of people stopped by to check on a loved one or a friend or a fellow vet who did not come back. Some placed flowers while others traced over the names with their fingers. The silence here was deafening! 

Guest Photographer - Beth Collins


So this is a picture I took of my nephew Liam at my friend's wedding. We weren't sure how well he'd do with the festivities, but as you can see from the picture Liam gives a big thumbs up for the wedding (and for toy airplanes!)

The wedding was at The Wolfboro Inn, in the Lake Winnipesaukee region of New Hampshire. The picture was taken shortly after Liam finished his 'kid's meal' of chicken tenders and fries. The dancing was just getting started, and my husband, Matt took off his sunglasses to put them on Liam. Liam's a pretty fast-moving little guy, so I was glad I caught the moment. I took the picture with a Canon Power Shot camera.

Thanks, Beth

Don't forget to send me some of your favorites from 2013.

Tony Mistretta will be Returning as Guest Photographer

Weekly Photo Suggestion:

Never let photography get in the way of enjoying life!

 A Pearl of Wisdom. . .

Johnson's Second Law of Socialization

If, in the course of several months, only three worthwhile social events take place, and, they will all fall on the same evening. 

Monday, March 17, 2014

Week Eleven - "Capre Hatteras Light"

Someone commented, "Frank's Big Dipper on a Moonlit Night had an eerie look to it and would make a great Hallowe'en card."

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!!

"Cape Hatteras Light"

Finishing up my time on the Outer Banks, I was able to get out to sees the iconic Cape Hatteras Light. It is easily distinguishable by the black and white stripe. No inside shot as the beacon was under construction and there was no admittance to the top.

However, I was very patient in waiting for a later in the afternoon opportunity to capture this image with the light flashing when I shot.

Guest Photographer - Milt Williamson

"Lunch at the Village Cafe"

Here's a favorite I took late last September at a local breakfast/lunch eatery I call "Lunch at the Village Cafe".

At the time a category club members were chasing was "like Norman Rockwell" when I suddenly realized this old place reeked of "Norman Rockwell".  So one lunchtime I got an opportunity with this composition and natural lighting and those few lamps. History of this store goes back to my Grandparents ice cream shop and of my parent's operating a "Village Store" here from just after WWII to the mid-sixties where I "soda jerked" while growing up in this village. Now, a young lady from the village operates a fine cafe during "season" and that is her husband to far right with a couple friends enjoying one of her culinary creations.

This image was awarded "Best Photograph" in last fall's Falmouth Artists Guild's Juried All Media Exhibition.

Thanks, Milt

Don't forget to send me some of your favorites from 2013.

Next Week's Guest is Beth Collins

Weekly Photo Suggestion:

  The definition of photography is: "painting with light." Use light in your favor.

 A Pearl of Wisdom. . .

Boyle's Observation

The first pull on the cord ALWAYS sends the drapes in the wrong direction.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Week Ten - "OBX II"

At least three followers got the urge to go out and buy some peeps after viewing Ann's website. I have it on good authority that two of those people bought the peeps to eat!

"Inside Cuttrick Light"

Still on the Outer Banks, I managed to find several lighthouses to shoot. Unfortunately, only one allowed inside access - Cuttrick. I must have taken over one hundred shots inside of the spiral staircase. This was one of my favorites. 

What caught my eye - the green railings against the beige walls as well as the shadows throughout. I was also mesmerized by the tiled flooring at the bottom and the leading lines of the railings and the stairs.

Guest Photographer - Frank Gorga

"Big Dipper on a Moonlit Night"

The evening of 21 September 2013 was one of those proverbial “you can read the newspaper by the moonlight” nights. It was the day after the full moon and there was not a cloud in the sky.  Thus, I figured that I might be able to make an interesting photograph of the night sky with a moonlit foreground.
About 9 PM I drove the mile down the road from our house to the bridge across the narrow point in Gregg Lake.  This is one of my favorite spots to photograph.  I have photographed the landscape at this spot many times. There are often dragonflies and birds here as well.
The view of the sky to the north is expansive and, importantly for the photograph I envisioned, there are no man-made lights visible in this direction. The moon would be more-or-less at my back thereby providing favorable illumination of the lake and the woods along its shore.
I mounted the camera on my tripod and pointed the lens north-ish. I set the camera to ISO 400 and my lens to f/8.  I manually adjusted the focus just short of infinity; autofocus was not going to work in the low light.  After a few test frames to gauge the exposure, I opened the shutter with a cable release and a minute later, keeping time on my wristwatch, I closed the shutter. Post processing was minimal&hellip noise reduction and a very small bit of dodging to lighten the foreground.

The final result comes pretty close to the original idea I had before I left the house&hellip the Big Dipper was an unexpected bonus!

Congratulations to Frank! He has been accepted as an exhibiting member of the Vermont Center for Photography. He will be able to exhibit during their semi-annual members' show as well as other perks.

Want more of Frank's images, follow his blog:

Thanks, Frank!

Don't forget to send me some of your favorites from 2013.

Next Week's Guest is Milt Williamson

Weekly Photo Suggestion:

A good photo shouldn't require explanation 
(although background information often adds to an image).

  A Pearl of Wisdom. . .

Murphy's Constant

Matter will be damaged in direct proportion to its value.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Week Nine - "OBX"

"In Disrepair"

March was quiet as to opportunities to get out and shoot so my next destination was OBX and DC. Okay, OBX is the Outer Banks of North Carolina. We had some time share to use up and needed a location that was within a reasonable drive. A week opened up on the outer Banks so we booked it.

This dilapidated pier was in Duck. I shot it because of the clouds and the condition of the structure. It was converted to B&W for more impact.

Guest Photographer - Ann Bertulli

"At the Beach"

For your followers who do not know me, I don't get out much so I create my shots from scratch out of toys, candy, paper or whatever miscellaneous materials I can come up with. The day I shot this I longed to be on a beach with a margarita. The sand was added in post-production from another image because bringing the sand in the house gets to be a little messy.

For more of my set-ups, check out:

Ann is a master of setting up displays. Her "Peeps" images are classic. Make sure you do visit her website to see what she has been able to do - you will not be disappointed!

Thanks, Ann!

Don't forget to send me some of your favorites from 2013.

Next Week's Guest is Frank Gorga

Weekly Photo Suggestion:

 Silver EFEX pro is the best b/w converter!

  A Pearl of Wisdom. . .

Rule of Failure

If at first you don't succeed, destroy all evidence that you have tried.