Hangin by the Bay

Since my car is out of service I have had alot of free time before work and during my lunch break. I decided to use this time to familiarize myself with the new camera, lenses, and filters. On this particular day I saw these seagulls by the Boardwalk while I was eating lunch. The birds eyes were locked on to the local fishing boats unloading at the dock, probably hoping for a few spilled fish. Anyway, I saw the birds and thought that it would be a good time to practice using repetition in my photo composition. I have never really tried to take photos of birds before so it was also a challenge for me to be patient with the moving, squaking, pooping mass!! I really love the way the pictures came out- they were edited very little in Picasa [mostly saturation, lighting levels, and contrast to make the colors really pop].

SUBJECT: Seagulls, Repetition
DATE/TIME: 12/30/09 @ noon
LOCATION: Humboldt Bay Boardwalk
NOTES: I used a polarizing filter on all the pictures because of the harsh noon light from the sun.


Today I went for a walk down to the PALCO Marsh between Costco and Bayshore Mall. I have been wanting to go down there for a while but didn't really get the chance until my car was out of commission due to Volkswagon sucking ass (BTW- 04 Passat owners- beware the ignition coils/heat shield/ fuel line seal/ seat heater/ and rear taillights). Took the new camera with me and was playing around with it for these water/ reflection shots. All images have been edited with iPhoto and Picasa, with the most work being done on the left and the least on the right top image. Mainly used exposure, temperature, definition, contrast, and saturation =5min. editing time per photo.

LOCATION: PALCO Marsh (Eureka, CA)
DATE/TIME: 12/27/09 @ 3-5pm
SUBJECT: water, plants, sky, reflections

One Dog-on Good Day

Yippie! I got a new camera for Christmas!! My hunny got me a Nikon D5000 with two lenses and two filters!! So of course, I had to try out the camera as fast as humanly possible! So the first obvious subject was my dog, because she is always laying around and doesn't mind getting flashed repeatedly... It was also her birthday- we adopted her from the pound almost exactly a year ago, poor thing, spending last Christmas in doggie jail! I think she had a much better Christmas this year!

For these images I used the new camera playing around with exposure, flash settings, and shutter speed. Very small amounts of editing has been done to these photos- mainly temperature, exposure, and saturation. Also experimented with the Picasa collage feature and I like it much better than Elements!!

LOCATION: my house
DATE/TIME: 12/26/09 @ 1-9pm
SUBJECT: Scarlett, my rescued pitbull


Today I planned on going to the Eureka christmas tree lighting to test out taking pictures at night with the christmas lights. However, it was freezing and dark before it even started and time was not on my side. So I did the next best thing, I set up my tripod at home by my tree and tested out a few shots playing with ISO, movement, lighting, and a few select photoshop tools (burn, dodge, saturation, levels, & layers). I took about 20 shots and picked my favorites, edited them, and then put them together in my first attempt at a photo- journalistic type collage...

-Left Top Pic- Desaturate, a touch of hue, saturation on ornament only
          I'm not sure what I think about this one- Scratch that, the more I look at it the more I dislike it but it was a good picture to practice object selection and color/b&w selections...

-Right Top Pic- Saturation, Lighting Levels, Sharpness, Highlighting edges, impressionist brush on ball
          I really like the way this pic turned out! It didnt take too long to edit it this way and I love the play of light that the edge highlighting created...

-Left Bottom Pic- Saturation, Lighting Levels, Sharpness, Blur
          I really like the glow given off by the lights both on the ball and the tree branches, The reflection of the light on the ball is wonderful. Oopsie- I forgot to turn the ball so that it would be facing the right way!

-Right Bottom Pic- Saturation, Lighting Levels, Hue
           I was playing around with movement and lights trying to create those perfect lines you see on pictures of highways at night with a long exposure.. So I varied my movements with the camera as I was pushing the shutter button (I tried moving it in a small circle, short line, long line, shaking side to side, and up and down) and found that the smallest movement is all that is needed- otherwise the ball is so out of focus and doubled that it just ends up looking like a blur... But I really liked the straight lines in this picture- it makes me think of a  falling Christmas tree- TIMBER! Would you know what this is a pic of if I didnt tell you?

      Burn tool: The Burn tool is used to darken areas of an image
      Dodge tool: Used to darken areas of an imag. The Dodge tool’s name comes from the traditional photographer’s method of reducing the amount of light made available when exposing the film.
      Saturation: A measure of the strength of colour in an image.
      ISO Settings: Industry norm for sensitivity of emulsion based film, with 100 ISO being not so sensitive (and the standard ISO used by most people) to 1600 ISO which is extremely sensitive to light. In a regular non-digital camera the ISO is the type of film used.

LOCATION: My house, by the Christmas Tree
DATE/TIME: Dec. 3, 09 @ 7pm
SUBJECT: Lighting, Movement, Darkness, ISO settings, Dodge & Burn Tools,Saturation, Layers


Thanksgiving 2009: This year everything was perfect! It took some planning and cooking for 3 days before the big event but everything was timed perfect, wonderfully yummy, and looked the same! I have never really tried to take photos of food before so this was definetly a first. I read a 4 page article (for article click on post title "Cuisine") pre-photos from a cuisine photographer talking about lighting, perspective, camera angles, textures and backgrounds. This was also my first time using the Lighting adjustment tool in Adobe Elements as well as messing with background colors/perceptions. All in all I am quite happy with the photos for their ability to show the texture of the food, especially on the Turkey and Ham!!

LOCATION: My Kitchen
DATE/TIME: Nov. 26, 09 @ 4pm
SUBJECT: Cuisine, Thanksgiving


I went to Patricks Point State Park today for a hike. It was gorgeous! However, this wreaked havoc on my pictures because it was waayy to bright out for my lil'ol' point-&-shoot! So I had to try and mess around with the exposure of the photos as well as the settings in order to capture the waves breaking; and then had to mess with the exposure/light balance in Elements...


LOCATION: Patrick's Point State Park
DATE: Nov. 21, 2009 @ 1-3pm
SUBJECT: Landscape, Seascape

Couple Self Portrait

For my first experiment photo shoot I decided to get photos for my Christmas cards I have to send out soon. I did some Google-ing and really loved the style of many engagement photos so I began researching the style, composition, and content of engagement photos. So after looking through and reading about engagement photo styles here is my end result: I was really trying to experiment with perspective, reflections, my new tripod,  and my sweet doggie- which can be a challenge to photograph well because she's so squirmy!!

Location: Old Town Eureka
Date/Time: Nov. 14th 2009 @ 2-4pm

Fair Entries

I entered 6 photographs in the Humboldt County Fair, Amateur Photography Division, and came out with my first ribbon!!

THIRD PLACE WINNER: Black and White Landscape

LOCATION: Avenue of the Giants, Humboldt CA
DATE/TIME: Fall 2008, Midday
SUBJECT: Redwoods, Landscape