Wednesday, March 31, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/400, f/4.00, 55mm, M

Just like March, Haley is out of here. A bit bummed I cropped her shadow on the right; didn't notice until I was out of RAW and had deleted the original from the camera. Oh well. Watch out for pranks tomorrow!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010


Picture info: ISO 200, 1/15, f/2.00, 50mm, M

Crayons at the Speech Therapy waiting room. Riley has a Tuesday appointment every week and this little tray is always stocked full of crayons. Playing cards, too. It's nice.

Monday, March 29, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/80, f/2.00, 50mm, M

I have a sinus infection. Over the past few days, I've taken one form or another of what you see above. Right now, my eyes are achy and I'm wearing my glasses (usually I'm contacts only during the day). I don't feel terrible, only off and uncomfortable. If I had a job, I'd be there as I'm not so sick that I couldn't work.

However, being ill sucks. Usually I get sick once a year. In the past 12 months, I've had 3 sinus infections and at least one cold. WTF?

Makes me feel for those who get sick all the time. :(

Sunday, March 28, 2010


Picture info: ISO 1600, 1/250, f/4.00, 55mm, M

We went to good ol' Factoria Square for a pre-Easter Easter egg hunt at the little kids' museum they have there. It's a museum for kids. Not a museum of kids. I digress.

Afterwards we walked around a little. I swear there are more vacancies there than occupied spots. It sucks. They did spruce it up a little recently, so it's not the ghetto it once was. I digress.

I needed a new watch battery so we hit the local jeweler for some help. As the man worked on it, you'd think the kids were watching something incredible. I don't think they made a sound the entire time this man had his goggles on. I mean, it was cool, but not THAT cool. Well, not to me, at least.

Saturday, March 27, 2010


Picture info: ISO 200, 1/320, f/5.00, 96mm, M

I was washing my hands at the kitchen window tonight and saw this. Well, without the bird. I said, "There's my picture," ran down to get the camera, ran back and took some snaps.

The first few were totally zoomed in with just a bit of the tree and the moon in the shot. I looked away and saw some crows flying towards where I was shooting, so I recomposed and hit this shot.


The crow was way above the moon. Using the magic of PSE, I moved it to just in front of the moon. It's a little hoky, but I like this version better than the original.

Beautiful day today, huh? Awesome!

Friday, March 26, 2010


Picture info: ISO 200, 1/50, f/5.00, 100mm, M

Another uninspired day for pictures. I have some ideas, but I was lazy and spent most of my day today troubleshooting this stupid popup (seen above) that I keep getting at random times. I close the tab and reopen the same site and the popup disappears. This virus/rogue/malware also seems to block any access to legitimate anti-virus sites, so I'm SOL when it comes to updating virus defs and the like.

On the positive side, I spent a lot of time today also boning up on my Elements 7 skills. I recently got a Wacom Bamboo tablet and I've been working with that, trying to get better. I also have more books I got from the library (including the Elements 7 for Dummies [don't laugh! It's good!]) and have been working with those. In fact, if you look in the lower left corner, you just might see some of my new skills coming to light. :)

Thursday, March 25, 2010


Picture info: ISO 200, 1/125, f/5.60, 123mm, M

Got out of the house today before the rain. Stopped at the Winter house on Bellevue Way as I'd driven past it hundreds of times but never checked it out. These little flowers were outside a structure just north of the house. Don't know if the structure is incomplete or abandoned, but I liked how the flowers were just hanging there.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/320, f/5.60, 146mm, M

Another back yard photo. I came down with something last night. Chills, achiness, stuff like that. Today I didn't do much but hang out and so here's my photo.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/100, f/8, 50mm, M

Took Rye to Alki after his speech today since it was so beautiful. Unfortunately, it was a bit chilly there so Rye donned a ski cap left over from winter and my sweatshirt. He was entranced by the guy in the background who was juggling bottles and cups.

Tomorrow my goal is a non-family picture. We'll see what happens.

Monday, March 22, 2010


Picture info: ISO 400, 1/100, f/4.00, 55mm, M, flash

I'm trying to use my histogram more. I used to think that as long as the readout didn't touch either side of the LCD, the picture was fine. After reading and studying some recently, I think not touching either side of the LCD is very important (for no loss of detail), but I need to get my shots closer to either side.

This shot was in the living room and I am playing with "creative" cropping as there's a distracting red baby seat to the left and a distracting blue pillow to the right. Just know that Bella does have a complete right ear.

I liked this shot because it was clear and bright. Usually I wouldn't have touched the brightness but after checking the histo, I saw I could have bumped it up a little, so I did, and this is the result. I like it!

Sunday, March 21, 2010


Picture info: ISO 800, 1/50, f/4.00, 55mm, M

This picture should go in my "Riley being Riley" album on Facebook, but he wanted it to be my P365 picture instead. We were invited to a friend's birthday party today and Rye and I went as Haley was at another friend's party. It took place in the Tyee Community Gym over by Somerset and the kids all had a great time. Can't you tell?

Saturday, March 20, 2010


Picture info: ISO 1600, 1/80, f/5.60, 79mm, M

Not my best shot of the day (thanks guy in the background!), but definitely my favorite. Haley was invited to a birthday party at Castle Ice in Renton today and she just tore it up. We dropped her off and when we got back, I was able to take some action shots. She must've just fallen prior to this shot, but I love the expression. She loves her ice skating, that's for sure!

Friday, March 19, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/200, f/7.10, 90mm, Av, flash

A few months ago, I built a lightbox from an old cardboard box, some white posterboard and tissue paper. The idea behind it was to shoot lights into it and take photographs of objects, etc, and have a seamless background. I think I've accomplished that with this elephant. The trouble is, the paper I have for the background isn't completely white to my eyes. I attempted custom white balancing that sucker, but it still came out off. Part of the problem is I have 2 different lights on either side of the box, as well as a Speedlight bouncing off a light blue ceiling.

I'm going to post this at to see what they say, but even I can see that my WB is way off here. I tried cloning the background in PSE, but that just made dark circles in the corners (look lower left). I guess I could use the lasso to extract the elephant, import in a bright white background, then combine the two layers, but that'd be cheating!

In the meantime, I have a larger box sitting here holding a bunch of crap. I'm going to empty it out and try to make a better lightbox sometime soon.

Thursday, March 18, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/200, f/5.60, 55mm, Av, flash

Yup, it's another kid picture. I actually got out of the house and shot some photos today. Went to our local community college to attend a information session about unemployment benefits and education. 3 hours later (!) I went home and took the kids outside for some biking fun. On the way out of the garage, I saw Haley with her back to the sun and thought it would be a cool place for some flash experimenting.

I put the camera on the tripod, had the flash on top, dialed it in and shot. I wanted the sun to highlight the back of her head (called rim light, I think), which acts to pop her from the background a bit. Don't know how I did, so it's off to a photo website I frequent to get some C&C (comments and criticism).

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/200, f/4.50, 74mm, M

More kids outside. This time, they're like the weather: changing at a moment's notice. One second, everyone's happy and having fun. The next, they're fighting over a horrible old jump rope. Riley wanted to play tug-o-war and Haley wanted to jump rope.

End result?

Everyone loses. We went inside. :(

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Picture info: ISO 800, 1/60, f/2.20, 50mm, Av

Riley was back to his Tuesday Children's Hospital routine today. Most Tuesdays, I take him into Seattle for some speech therapy. Today we also hit up pain management for some cupping and acupuncture/acupressure treatment.

What you see on his back are suction cups used for cupping. Rather than burn incense or herbs on needles inserted into the skin, the doctors use these suction cups. You can see his skin being sucked by the cups if you click on the picture above.

When he's done, he has circular bruises where the cups were attached. In a day or so, the cupping will have worked its magic in that he won't be as constipated anymore.

It's a lousy way to spend a Tuesday afternoon, but he's a trouper and for the most part, pretty much always does well.

Monday, March 15, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/60, f/4.00, 55mm, M

This is a pile of debris next to the old shed in my back yard. One day, the wooden supports you see under the shed will rot away (that back corner isn't even holding anything up!) and then, whammo, shed on the ground. About the only purpose this shed serves is to house shield the lawn mower from some of the elements (the sliding doors no longer slide) and to give us somewhere to store a week's worth of dog poo at a time (in a little foot-operated trash container).

I will be in the Sand Point area tomorrow, so I hope to have some better pictures. March has been a lousy picture month for me.

Sunday, March 14, 2010


Picture info: ISO 400, 1/200, f/5.60, 55mm, Av, flash

This bike got me through college. These days, it hangs from a hook in my garage. I decided to pump the tires up today (stupid Presta valves!) and take it for a spin.

I used to know how to change bike tires and stuff. Pretty handy. I'd put slicks on when I was at school and when I'd go actual "mountain biking", I'd put the knobbys back on. These days, I have no idea where the slicks went or if I have them anymore.

It's a decent bike considering I got maybe 18 years ago (OMG. I just fell out of my chair). It was when front suspensions (Rockshox anyone) were the rage and I couldn't afford it. No suspension on this bike!

Saturday, March 13, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/200, f/5.00, 50mm, Av, flash

Riley is reading a little now. I was putting groceries away and he read The Cat in the Hat to me. He read it quite well but I think it was more the familiarity of it than actually reading the words. Then again, I could be wrong. Anyway, big week for him. Riding without training wheels and now reading books. What will next week bring??

Friday, March 12, 2010


Picture info: ISO 800, 1/400, f/20, 50mm, Av

First shot of the day. Second shot of the day was Haley. Third shot of the day almost didn't happen as my camera took a dive again. This time, I had on the 50mm. The last two times, it was the 55-250. At this point, I'm pretty sure it's the camera that's having issues and not the lenses.

Anyway, I got more shots, with flash(!), but for some reason, I wasn't feeling it with the camera today. To top our trip to Seattle off, I got a parking ticket (IRONIC), which was lame.

Thursday, March 11, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/125, f/4.00, 55mm, Av

I had a job interview in Seattle today and stopped by Chinatown for pictures and coconut buns. Both were failures in that it was raining and my camera took another dump and the coconut buns weren't as good as I would have hoped.

Before my camera froze up, I snapped 9 pictures. Here's my favorite of the bunch if only because of the gate visible in the left corner.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/400, f/4.00, 18mm, Av

Spring is close, right? Then why's it so damn cold??? Sweatshirts and fuzzy slippers all day long for me. Here's a flower Haley drew in the street today to remind us that spring is almost here.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/500, f/4.00, 55mm, Av

Went on a walk with Marci and Bella today to mail a letter to the IRS. Behind our local dead shopping center (RIP Red Apple), I saw this fire lane line and liked the color. There you go. W00t.

Monday, March 8, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/400, f/5.60, 55mm, Av

Finally. I got out of the neighborhood and had no camera issues! I headed to the local beach (Newcastle Beach Park) and was the only person there besides some park workers. It figures I'd go there on a day when we had SNOW!

Ok, it was a few flakes here and there, but still! It was cool and breezy out there.

I had the new 55-250 lens with me and though this is not zoomed in or anything, I liked the shot. I did get some zoomed in robins, but I'll save those for another time, I suppose.

I did juice up the blue of the sky (too much, I think). I'd fix it, but... I'm too lazy.

Sunday, March 7, 2010


Picture info: ISO 1600, 1/13, f/5.60, 250mm, Av

Not a terribly exciting picture to you, but an exciting terrible picture to me. Why? Let me tell you.

I have been having camera issues for the better part of 36 hours now and to have this picture that I took tonight, after having said issues, is a pretty big deal. After some troubleshooting and goofing around, somehow a pencil eraser took care of the problems I was having. Or, at least I hope so. I've shot more pictures consecutively tonight than I have all weekend and, so far, so good.

Anyway, what else is cool about this picture is that it was shot with my new lens, hand held, from a distance of about 11 feet. I had to crank the ISO way up, of course, but even at 1/13th of a second, the picture is pretty dang sharp. Thank goodness for the IS (Image Stabilization) on this lens.

My hope is to get some good pictures soon. I've looked back through March's shots so far and I'm not terribly happy with them.

Oh, BTW, I am not a Sci-Fi nerd. I liked the cover of this book and decided to give it a try. Despite it having a unicorn (that talks!), and hints about a human/unicorn union of some sort (huh?), it's been pretty cool so far (about 1/3 done). After this book and it's sequel, it's back on the Lehane wagon with Prayers for Rain.

Saturday, March 6, 2010


Picture info: ISO 400, 1/60, f/5.00, 55mm, Av

This is the underside of 405-N. The Cedar River is just beneath these struts. We took Bella to a dog park adjacent to this and this is where we parked.

I hoped to have a better shot today, but I experienced some technical difficulties with my camera's CF card. I think they are ironed out and hope to have something more profound tomorrow.

Friday, March 5, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/200, f/1.80, 50mm, Av, flash

It's a boring lens to you, but it's an exciting toy to me! Through the magic of the Internet, (I'm looking at you, Facebook), I met a friend of a friend today. He and I had been chatting as much as you could chat via FB and mainly about photography. He offered to give me this lens and was unwilling to accept payment until my current situation stabilized itself.

Wow. Awesome!

And, to top it off, Jim was a pretty cool cat too. We had a lot in common besides photography, but the most exciting part of our lunch was sharing our passion for taking pictures. I'm excited to put this lens to use.

Thanks, Jim!

Thursday, March 4, 2010


Picture info: ISO 400, 1/200, f/2.80, 50mm, Av, flash

Marci grilled artichokes tonight. After she chopped them in half, I thought they looked pretty cool so I snapped a few pix. Flash was used. Artichokes were tasty.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/30, f/13, 50mm, Av

Working on my panning with Haley. Set the focus mode to Servo, put her in the center and clicked away. I liked this one the best.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


Picture info: ISO 100, 1/500, f/4.0, 50mm, Av

Ok. Technically this is two pictures and yes, it's of another car, but man, I love how this turned out. I saw this beautiful Ferrari California in the Lowe's Issaquah parking lot. I was taking Mom out for some errands and had to snap some shots. As I took two on the profile, I figured I'd stitch them together.

Pretty amazing what the software can do. And what a beautiful car to boot!

Monday, March 1, 2010


Picture info: ISO 800, 1/200, f/1.80, 50mm, Av, flash

It's my mp3 player, a 4gb Sansa something or other. I got it a few years off of for about $25 or so. It has served me well since then. One reason I got it is because for some odd reason, I ripped most of my CDs to .ogg format, which is not readable by many mp3 players. With the Sansa, I was able to install an open source software called Rockbox, which allowed me to play .ogg, as well as customize it in many other ways.

It's no iPod, but it works for me.

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