Month: November 2009

Sunday walk on the Appalachian Trail

Southern Berkeshires

Cornwall Bridge, Connecticut. David and Loren hiked north on the Appalachian Trail from Kent to Cornwall Bridge leaving a car in Kent. I drove to Cornwall Bridge and hiked south to meet them and then we doubled back and I drove them to their car. I was on my own so brought bigger camera gear and tripod to attempt better shots of these hills.

Field and hill

Something about the two textures: grass and trees looked interesting to me. Nice to have a decent camera and lens to attempt to capture detail.

Field and hill

Appalachian Trail along the Housatonic River

Hiking down the AT to meet David and Loren. The trail is covered in leaves here which aren’t a problem on flat trail but are a serious problem on switchbacks and hills.

Prey

Prey is a small application that you install on a Mac or a PC laptop and if that computer is ever stolen Prey will help you track it.

It’s open source and free.

I haven’t installed it yet but it does sound quite useful. Of course, it also seems to allow the folks running the project to see what all of their users are doing but no doubt I’m being paranoid to think that way.

[via Bill Lynn]

Begonia propeller

Begonia propeller

Warren, Connecticut. We’re feeling rather wiped out today from a big Thanksgiving dinner, guests, and the inevitable cleanup, and it’s gloomy out so out comes the tripod and macro lens for a different perspective on the world. This flower is not doing well but has some nice little blooms on it.

The Zone System

The Zone System

Developed by Ansel Adams and Fred Archer in 1941, the zone system is a systematic way work with exposure and processing to get the right gradient of tones from white to black.

Most of us are just trying to get a handle on the different light meters in our DSLRs, let alone using them more proactively to create a range of tones but in face, getting a handle on the light meter is exactly what Ansel Adams was thinking about when he came up with this.

Maybe the best way to think about this is in its historical context and when Adams and Archer were working on this there were no film or digital cameras that had a mode dial with “automatic” on it.

Appalachian Trail: Cornwall Bridge to Kent

Appalachian Trail: Cornwall Bridge to Kent

Cornwall Bridge, Connecticut. The Housatonic River is right behind me as I take this and these are the southern Berkshire Mountains. This stretch of the AT is the longest stretch along a river on it’s entire 2000 mile run, about eight miles on the west bank of the Housatonic. We only did about six miles today but plan to do the entire section on Sunday to work off Thanksgiving dinner.

Appalachian Trail: Cornwall Bridge to Kent

Appalachian Trail: Cornwall Bridge to Kent

Fast experiment with a hand held macro. Interesting bokeh for a point and shoot camera.

Appalachian Trail: Cornwall Bridge to Kent

An island on the Housatonic. As we talked down stream we kept seeing a bald eagle flying ahead of us and stopping until we caught up. I think if one came here early in the day loaded for bear (for eagle) with a long lens there might be a chance of catching him fishing.

Appalachian Trail: Cornwall Bridge to Kent

Bank of the Housatonic River.

Appalachian Trail: Cornwall Bridge to Kent

The sun is setting behind the hill to the left of me and lighting up this windrow of trees at the end of this cornfield.

Appalachian Trail: Cornwall Bridge to Kent

Over that hill and the next one is Warren where I live. This place is quite close to my house.

Appalachian Trail: Cornwall Bridge to Kent

Where’s waldo?

Appalachian Trail: Cornwall Bridge to Kent

This was a test of putting the G11 on a table top tripod, putting it on my pack, setting the camera to Av mode, stopping down, some, and using the timer to get rid of vibration to see about getting a shot with some sharpness front to back. It was a bad test in that the light was low enough and the ISO high enough (auto, stupid me) that the trees are full of noise. I can see potential though and I’ll keep working on shots like this with this camera.

Appalachian Trail: Cornwall Bridge to Kent

Sunset on the Housatonic. Good thing we were almost back to the car, it was getting cold.

Cousin Bob

Cousin Bob

Santa Monica, California. My mother has two first cousins in Los Angeles who she sees pretty often and Bob Fleer is one of them. His mother was my mother’s father’s sister.

Bob has a PhD in psychology, is brilliant, a Mac head, a photogarpher, an iPhone addict, a serious ping pong player, a serious tango dancer, a serious ukelele player, and more. In other words, he’s a polymath.

When he and I get together we talk for hours about all sorts of things, usually with multiple topics in play at once, the threads interwoven. I love that I have a relative like this and I only wish we got together more often.