Before/After: The Return of Photo Art

I don’t do this much anymore, mostly because my wrist can’t take the extreme mousing required when masking, but once in a while I simply must indulge because the results are striking, beautiful, or both.

Here’s the original, straight out of the camera.

I took this shot from across the lake and was amazed it was clear and sharp. You can tell by the water it was a windy day, to boot. That always makes it harder to handhold long-distance photos. Tripod? I don’t need no stinkin’ tripod. ūüėČ

Well, I probably¬†do, but they’re a pain in the ass to lug around, set up, then afterward collapse again–especially if you’re carrying two cameras and a bag of lenses. By the time you’re ready to take a picture, the creature is often long gone, and that’s why I shoot handheld 99% of the time.

The funny thing is, most of the time my hands are steady as a rock. No shake. But once in a while, I can’t get an unblurry photo no matter what. Days like that I definitely need a tripod. Continue reading

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Damn Those Mosquitoes

This morning I left just as light broke. I wanted to get to Iskotpoga Lake before the sun rose.¬† I made it, no problem. It was a gorgeous morning… except for the mosquitoes, which were lying in wait for an idiot like me. You know, someone who forget the bug spray.

It never occurred to me to bring it. I won’t forget next time. I was fine until I hit the dock, at which point they swarmed my tender flesh. Gawd, it was awful, but I stuck it out until the sun came up. This is one of the dock pilings. There were two. Both were loaded with mosquitoes. I didn’t notice the bug halfway down until I downloaded the photo.

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Photos: 5.22.19

I had this terrific photo of Flashdance and her newborn colt, Harley, and I decided to do something special with it.

I remember my days on the farm with great fondness. It was hard work, but the rewards were great. Those were the years of horses and peacocks, chickens and geese.

It’s kind of funny, the different stages we go through. Looking back, the farm years seem like a completely different life. After that I was single and working again.

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Spider Revisit

I continue to be fascinated by my garden spiders. Their scientific name is leucauge argyra, but they are commonly known as orchard orb weavers. They are harmless. They only bite if they feel endangered, and even then it hurts less than getting zapped by a bee or wasp.

Lots of them are crawling all over my pineapple plants. I’ve been watching them grow over the last few weeks, and when I water, I’m careful not to disturb their webs. I’d like to think they appreciate that, but I’m sure it doesn’t occur to them. Heh.

I went out with the Canon and Raynox 250 macro lens the other morning and was lucky enough to catch one of them eating and grooming. It was a male. How do I know?

From Wiki: In sexually mature male spiders, the final segment of the pedipalp, the tarsus, develops a complicated structure (sometimes called the palpal bulb or palpal organ) that is used to transfer sperm to the female seminal receptacles during mating. (Photo of a striped lynx spider is from the article.)

On the male orchard orb weaver, those final palp segments are red.



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A Squirrel Tale in Five Pics

I went down to the lake this morning (not the day you’re reading this, but an earlier one) and snapped a few pics. I was using the Sony with a 50mm lens.

A squirrel was on the bridge. When he saw me, he froze.

Omg, does he see me? Maybe if I get as flat as possible, he won’t notice me.

That didn’t work. Shit, I gotta get out of here. Think I can make it to that tree? Continue reading

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