My son's Cub Scout group participated in the district's annual Camporee last weekend. Camping out one night is a requirement for one of the achievements that he needs for his WEBLOS badge. During the day there were various activities for the boys the most popular being BB-Guns and archery ... naturally. His group also organized and cooked their lunch to complete another requirement for the badge.
The boys had a lot of fun. The weather was quite nice throughout the day. There was none of the rain that had been predicted for the day earlier in the week. It did get cool during the night, but we had cold weather sleeping bags that were more than enough.
In this photograph, Connor is spinning around a flashlight while we were waiting for the evening's events to start. Long exposure times let you blur movement. Many time you don't want to use longer exposure times as it causes your pictures to be blurry. However, if you do it on purpose, it can make for some fun and different images.
Friday, October 30, 2009
Thursday, October 29, 2009
I'm running behind on things. We had an event this past weekend, but it is taking me longer to go through the photographs, organize them, pare them down, and do final edits than it normally does. Part of this is because it was an event with my son's Cub Scout group where I took a lot of personal photographs as well as scout related photographs.
So today I picked this shot of my son from last week's Red Ribbon fun run as it started this 400m lap. He finished last, but had a good time doing it. I feel kind of like that at the moment ... running behind, but having fun too.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Connor's Long Jump
He is a photograph of my son Connor at the Red Ribbon Fun Run last week. He is making is long jump attempted. It was a good day and he had fun. You can't really ask for more than that.
Thank you for your support
Last weekend I mentioned the Sparkle City Blogger Awards. This blog was nominated in the Media and Photography category. When the votes were tallied we ended as the runner up to Slobot About Town. Congratulations to Slobot and thank you readers for supporting this blog.
Monday, October 26, 2009
My son is in an after school Fitness Club program. The club participates in periodic local events with other schools. The first one of the year was the Red Ribbon Fun Run held at the South Carolina School for the Deaf and Blind. The SCSDB has a nice track facility.
The kids were split into their grade levels and then rotated through three events: 400 meter lap, 100 yard dash, and a long jump. Each child received a Red Ribbon for participating and small snack and drink for a refreshment after finishing all three events.
It was a nice, sunny, warm day. The kids seemed to have a good time and they learned about staying fit and healthy.
Friday, October 23, 2009
This is my favorite photograph from the trip up to the mountains. The reason is that I have been trying out a new focusing method. Basically what I have done is reprogrammed the shutter release button to only lock in the exposure when I press it halfway down. By default, the shutter release takes the exposure reading and focuses when you press it halfway down. Then I programed the AF-On button on the back of the camera to preform the focusing function. This lets me focus with the AF-On button and "lock" it simply by releasing the button for static subjects. If the subject is moving, then it continually tracks the subject and tries to keep it in focus.
This particular image was obviously a static subject. However, it is the sharpest image that I've gotten since reprogramming the camera buttons. It is sharp enough that you can see the very tiny veins that run throughout the leaf's membrane. Thus, it proves to me that I'm on the right track with this new focusing method.
Thursday, October 22, 2009
We usually think of Autumn as the time of year when leaves are falling off the trees as the trees begin to hibernate for the winter. However, there are some plants that flower during this time of year as well. They can make surprising contrasts of color to the typical seasonal palette. I don't know what this purple flowering plant is, but it's light purple hue was a surprise to me. I tried to accent them against the blurred Autumn colors in the background. Kind of a different take on the season, I suppose.
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Here is another image from our brief weekend foray up to the Blue Ridge Parkway. I wanted to catch the colors at their "peak", however we seemed to be there a week or two early. That doesn't mean there were no colors. Far from it. There were patches of colors everywhere. The trees just had not gotten to the point where you see an ocean of color stretching across the mountain vistas. This image was one of my attempts to isolate some of the color that was present and place it against the blue sky for some contrast.
Getting out the Vote!
This blog has been nominated in the Best Visual or Photography Blog on the Spartanburg Spark's annual Sparkle City Blogger Awards. I would appreciate it if any of you visitors could spend a moment to vote for this blog. Here is a link to the Spartanburg Spark page. The ballot is on the left margin and the Visual/Photography category is down near the bottom. While you are there I recommend that you visit some of the other blogs as well. There are quite a few local bloggers worthy of RSS feeds. Thanks for the support!
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Blue Ridge Valley
We went up to the Blue Ridge Parkway this weekend. It was a brief trip for a couple of reasons. First, it was a last minute idea and we got a late start. Second, portions of the parkway were closed south and north of Asheville where we got on the parkway. I had heard there had been an accident south of Asheville where a car had slide off the edge of the road and fell 80 feet down the mountain. We knew about that closure which is why we decided to go north instead. However, that route was closed as well after only two scenic overlooks. The area had gotten some snow the day before and there were patches of ice on the road. It was still a nice afternoon excursion. The colors had not hit their peak yet, maybe in a couple of weeks they will be better.
Friday, October 16, 2009
There are several Canadian Geese at each of the parks I visited earlier in the week. I think they have permanently settled in area and don't migrate any more. They are always around the ponds and looking for kids with bread to feed them. This particular goose seemed to be wistfully happy or daydreaming or such. Probably just wanted a handout. All of the fowl that came up to me left at about the same time when they realized I was just pointing something at them and wasn't going to give them something to eat.
Thursday, October 15, 2009
We had a nice, cool sunny day earlier this week. I took the opportunity to spend some time at a couple of local parks in the late morning / early afternoon. Certainly not the best time, light-wise, to go out with a camera, but it was good to get outside for awhile. I found this fallen branch with leaves on it and thought it was a hint of the forthcoming season. We are pretty busy on the weekends this month. I hope I can get out with the camera when the autumn colors are at their best. Autumn has given me some of my best photographs to date.
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
My son and I went on a hike with his cub scout group this past weekend. We hiked about five miles through Camp Croft State Park. The weather was overcast with light rain/drizzle in the early morning. The rain ended by the time that we got started on the trail though. It was pleasantly cool for the trip with the sun staying behind the clouds.
I'm surprised that all of us made it through the hike. I had a couple of cramps that evening, but I was no where near as stiff as I usually am after that much hiking.
Kids being kids, they immediately wanted to go to the playground after the hike. During the hike there were complaints about sour feet and such. After the hike? "Can we play on the jungle gym?" Kids. They get their energy by sucking it out of the adults.
This shot is of my son resting briefly on the playground.
Friday, October 9, 2009
West End Moon
The weather cleared up and gave me a chance to get back to Falls Park in Greenville. I'm trying to figure out how to get a really good shot of the Liberty Bridge at the park. I tried to get up early enough to get the good morning light. However, I mis-judged the sunrise and travel timing and thus missed the good light. It was still a successful trip though as it gave me a better idea of how the light hits the bridge. I am thinking that it might be best to photograph it in late afternoon for the particular angles I want. The light angle in the morning had the sun in the worst place for the bridge for me.
The shot above is my favorite from the day. It is looking back up to one of the old buildings in the historic West End section of Greenville. I was in Falls Park just below the Falls Cottage for those of you familiar with the area. All processing was done in Lightroom 2 including the black and white conversion. I darkened the sky to bring out the Moon. I also tweaked some of the other color channels to give a faux-IR look to some of the vegetation. Otherwise all of the vegetation looked the same with very little contrast between them.