Thursday, August 28, 2008

Ouch

My son (age 11) broke his little finger today, so we spent a good part of the day at the urgent care center. He's ok - though it's pretty painful. Poor kid - I don't think he'll be playing basketball at recess tomorrow. :)

I did get some work done this morning - mostly cleaning up and backing up my system. It was necessary to get that done before I could move on to some of the other tasks I have on my list. But I did process a few images - just the ones that caught my eye and were a quick job. The image you see here was shot in Arizona. I love the circles in the sandstone... such a beautiful contrast between these smooth little circles and the jagged lines that run through the rocks. To me, they look like little round moons orbiting some gigantic orange planet.

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Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Website Updates...

I just finished my short run - in the rain. :) It was a great day for running... nice and cool, and not wet enough to soak me through. I also took a different route than I usually do, which makes the run much more interesting. Now I'm starving. But I thought I'd put up a quick post before I eat.I put some time into updating my website today. The second part of my Following the Light article is now available on Outback photo. You can also download it from the articles page at www.PhotographyByVarina.com. I hope to be able to update my image galleries tomorrow.
I processed and uploaded several stock photographs today as well. This is a shot of our friend Anna - the one we were visiting in Italy last month. The last time she was in the US, Jay took this shot at a rose garden in Oregon. I processed the image today - removing four people who were standing in the path behind her, cleaning up rose petals that were littering the path, and removing product logos from her bag, chair, and shirt. It always takes quite a while to make changes like these to a photo - but for stock, it's necessary. Of course, I wouldn't change Anna. She's lovely just as she is. :) I love the challenge of doing this kind of stock work, so I won't complain. I have finished uploading, so tomorrow I'll be able to focus on my website.

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Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Canon 50D

At last! The Canon 50D is here. We'll be selling my 40D in a few weeks. Just as soon as we have the new 50D in our hands. :) You can take a look at the specs for this camera at Digital Photography Review. 15.1 megapixels, Digic 4 processor, improved ISO sensitivity, less noise... it looks like it's going to be good.

We've been waiting for this one for a long time. Now - I want to see what's next in the full frame arena. :) I love new cameras!

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Sunday, August 24, 2008

Soccer, bee stings, and an auction...


We spent Friday night at a soccer game - my son's team versus Jay's son's team. :) Saturday, we had four more soccer games. It was a long and very hot day, but we had a good time. Except for one bee sting (one of our seven-year olds) and one fever of 102 degrees (Jay). We took some nice photos at the evening games - nice lighting. We love our Canon 135mm f/2 lens for soccer games - we can get nice close up shots from the sidelines, and since it's a fast lens, we can freeze the action beautifully.

We sent Jay to bed once the soccer games were over, and I built a fire in the back yard. The kids and I roasted hot dogs and marshmallows (they had lots of veggies and grapes, too), and then we put up the tents. The kids slept in the back yard. They had a great time, and Jay is feeling quite a bit better today.

We spent a good part of the afternoon at the Cleveland Photographic Society auction... sold some equipment, but didn't buy anything. Now, Jay is feeling poorly again, and I'm not feeling so well, either. We're putting in a movie and we'll go to bed early.

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Friday, August 22, 2008

Working again...


The kids are all back at school, so I can get back to work. I have a whole lot of catching up to do, but I think I should be back on track in a few days. Today, I'm uploading and categorizing stock photos that Jay and I took this summer. They've been waiting around for me for some time now. It's our Working Mom series - definitely a fun shoot. Of course, I always wear a business suit while vacuuming and doing the dishes... I think it's important to look smart at all times. Right. Sure I do. :)

Once this series is uploaded, I'll be processing another set - for Halloween - and then I'll get to work on website updates and new site design.

It's good to be working again!

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Wednesday, August 20, 2008

In Bloom

It seems that everywhere we went this year, the flowers were putting on a show. These beautiful red ones were growing in soft light near Mono Lake in California. We were scouting the area so we'd be ready to shoot at sunset. I love our scouting trips - even though we aren't usually shooting at that time. We try to explore as much of a location as we can when the light is poor, so we'll be ready when the light is right. We drive down dirt roads or climb steep trails - just to see what we can find. Sometimes it's a grand vista - and sometimes it's a couple of pretty flowers. But there's always something. I love my job. :)

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Saturday, August 16, 2008

Winners

I entered two of my images in the Cleveland Photographic Society pictorial competition on Friday. Meander (top) took second place in the Color category, and Rapture on the Lonely Shore (below) took first in the Black and White category. It was a good night for me. There were some other beautiful photographs, too. It was great to see all our friends. We spent a good part of today rebuilding our photography set. We'll do some test shooting tomorrow.

We got in a short workout this morning and did our long run this evening. Then sushi for dinner (yum!) and it's time for a movie.

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Thursday, August 14, 2008

Photo of the Week

My photo, Sunrise Over St. Mary, has been chosen as photo of the week on Photoburst. Don't get confused, here - a few days ago, it was Photo of the Day, and now the same photo has moved up to the next category. That means it will compete with the other Photos of the Week for this month. At the end of the month, one photo will be chosen as Photo of the Month. I know some of my readers are excellent photographers as well. You should consider submitting some of your work at Photoburst. It doesn't cost you anything, and they give a $100 B&H gift card to Photo of the Month winners. Go on - submit your photos, leave a few comments... it's fun. :)

Actually - I changed my mind. If you all start submitting your shots, I won't have a chance in heck of winning! :)
I haven't had a lot of time for processing images, but I'm feeling guilty about not having anything new up for all of you. I get such nice comments and emails from people, and the least I could do is have a new photo on display every now and then. Once school is back in session, I will be able to focus more time on my job - but meanwhile, here's a shot from Yellowstone. We visited some of the old cabins with the kids, and this one had a particularly nice view from a back window. I used the built in flash on my camera to illuminate the inside of the cabin - and the sun did it's job on the landscape outside. It's not my usual style, but I like the shot anyway. :)

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Tuesday, August 12, 2008

First time for everything...

video
Well - I haven't had much time to work this summer, but I put together a short video - just to see what I could do with it. I'd like to hear what people think - if there is something you'd do differently or some other theme you'd prefer. I haven't done a video before, so this was a fun experiment for me. It remains to be seen if others will be interested. :)

This video is pretty simple. I've used a poem by Lord Byron, and strung together a series of my photographs as illustrations.

I'm not even sure if it will work! Does it take too long to load? Is it boring as heck? Please let me know what you think so I can do it better next time. Thanks!

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Monday, August 11, 2008

Photo of the Day

Photoburst has chosen Sunrise Over St. Mary as Photo of the Day. The photo was taken at Glacier National Park in Montana - on of my favorite parks. We scouted the park the day before and chose several locations as possibilities. In the morning, we chose this location based on cloud patterns and the direction of the sunrise. The sun would rise behind us, but with a clear horizon in the East, we expected to see some color in the clouds. We waited for a quite a while along the shore of St. Mary Lake, and in the end, we got more than we'd hoped for.

You can leave comments on the my photograph or others on Photoburst by clicking on the "description and comments" link below the photo. There are some truly beautiful images, so take some time to look if you can.

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Monday, August 4, 2008

Heading home

We'll be leaving Italy late tonight, en route to the good old US of A. We'll fly to London, then spend several hours in the airport there. From London to Chicago - LONG flight - and then six hours in the car. Once we're home, we'll be on duty right away. Two kids have soccer practice that night - at two different fields. Oh boy. It's going to be a LONG soccer season.

This little corner of Italy is truly beautiful. I would love to stay longer, but I miss my kids. We'll miss Anna and her family very much.

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Sunday, August 3, 2008

Italia...

It has been difficult to spend time on the computer since we arrived in Italy. We have been busy visiting with our friends, and seeing some of the countryside. Of course, in summer the skies are rarely right for landscape photography, but we are taking photographs of our friends when we can. We visited Venice a few days ago - the city is beautiful - but it was terribly crowded. We hope to visit again in Spring or Fall sometime so that we can capture images of the city under beautiful skies. And perhaps it will be less crowded with toursists during those seasons. As I said in an earlier post, we are visiting Italy to be with our friend, Anna. She seems to be doing well, and it has been wonderful to spend time talking with her. We are picking up some Italian, too. :)

I will be back in the US and ready to work again on Wednesday - although the children will be at home for a few more weeks before school begins. This has been a very nice vacation for us - usually when we travel, we work very hard every day. On this trip, I have been able to sleep a bit more than usual (there's no reason to get up at 4am each day), and our Italian friends are excellent company. And the food - wow. Just wow.

So despite an extremely severe case of Poison Ivy which I brought with me from home, I am quite content. :) I do miss the kids, though.

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