Monday, April 30, 2012

Day 239 - Heart of the Rose

Today I decided to take a super closeup shot of the inner petals of a rose in my backyard. I'd like to pretend that the blurriness is a deliberate attempt at "soft focus" (emphasizing the delicate nature of the flower blahblahblah), but it's not—I just could not get the camera to focus.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Day 238 - Bee! (Or, How the Universe Paid Me Back)

I like the fact that the day after I get stung by a bee, I get this (relatively) awesome shot of a bee outside my front door. Considering how much bees move around and the fact that I was using my closeup filters (which require the camera to be very close to the object), I'm happy with how well this shot turned out and the absence of further stinging.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Day 237 - Mission Inn

Before heading back toward home, we had a delicious breakfast with Jennifer and then walked around the Mission Inn taking photos. The plan was to go to the Huntington Gardens, so I didn't take too many photos at the inn. Unfortunately, we arrived too late at the gardens to make it worth our while to pay the $20 to get in (although we were there long enough for me to get stung by a bee). Our next stop—the Museum of Jurassic Technology—was too weird and poorly lit for photos. Weirdo-watching on Venice Beach could have yielded some fun photos, but by then I was a bit too tired to mess with the camera. So, as a result, I'm posting this kind of generic photo of the inn.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Day 236 - Awesome Modern Art

Today's trip down to Riverside to see Zoe Keating perform started off with a trip to Roscoe's House of Chicken and Waffles (yum!) and the La Brea Tar Pits, which were really interesting. Afterward, while wandering around, we found this modern, interactive art exhibit outside one of the adjacent museums. It was basically a cube of hanging yellow plastic tubes maybe 20 feet high or so that you could walk around in. It sounds stupid, but it was super fun. The first shot is what it looked like standing among the tubes. The second shot is from outside the cube looking up. I was fully expecting to post a photo from the tar pits or the concert, so finding this thing was a nice surprise.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Day 235 - Sea of Flowers

There's a house across the corner from me with the most amazing flowers, so today I walked over and took some shots. These ones look like a sea of anemones. I've been meaning to take a nice, sort of pastoral shot involving a white picket fence for awhile, hence the second photo.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Day 234 - 15 Seconds of Fame

Tonight I decided to take a shot of the red satin pillowcase that I often use as a backdrop for my photos. It was its time to shine in the spotlight (literally). Came out looking pretty cool in an abstract, artsy way.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Day 233 - Button, Button, Who's Got the Button?

I do! I save all the replacement buttons that come with shirts, pants, etc., so tonight I made a pile of some of the more colorful/interesting ones and took a photo. I couldn't get the depth of field quite right, but I'm happy with myself for coming up with the idea.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Day 232 - Cool Succulent Flower

I noticed this interestingly colored succulent flower over on the next block. Even though the center part came out blurry, I kind of like the effect—it sort of looks like it has a molten core.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Day 231 - A Dreary Little Bird for a Dreary Little Day

It was very overcast all today, which is perfect flower-picture weather. But instead of finding a nice flower, I found this little guy. He looks just as drab as the day itself, but I think he's cute and I'm proud of myself for noticing him.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Day 230 - Baby on Board

My friend is about six months pregnant and was demonstrating with her husband the type of "mother to be" photo she'd like professionally taken. His hands are in the shape of a heart on her tummy and hers are over his. It's a very cute idea, but since I was just taking quick shots in their kitchen, the quality isn't that great. I'm sure that if/when they h ave it professionally done in a well-lit studio it will look very nice.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Day 229 - Tootsie

More dogs! Tonight I went up to Lompoc to hang out with friends (including one who I hadn't seen in six years). We had a delicious dinner at Firestone Brewery in Buellton, but like an idiot I left my camera in the car. By the time I got back to Lompoc, it was late and I was a bit buzzed. so I just snapped this quick shot of Heather's pit bull Tootsie. She's a sweetie. The colors came out really bad, so I decided to make this one black and white.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Day 228 - Lily

Tonight I went over for dinner at my friends Andrew and Liz's house and met their new border collie/German shepherd mix puppy Lily. She's only about 9 weeks old and is absolutely adorable! Unfortunately, the lighting in their apartment is about as bad as mine (and, incidentally, since they only live a few blocks away, the layout of their place is exactly the same as mine) and she wasn't very good at sitting still when the camera was pointed at her. Those things, combined with the fact that she's black, made it really hard to photograph her. The first shot is about as good as I could get. The second one, while not as clear, is really, really cute. I'll definitely be back to visit her some more, so she'll probably make it back on this blog again (hopefully during daylight hours...).

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Day 227 - Dream Pillow

Tonight was a busy catch-up night, so I didn't have much time to think about a photo. I ended up taking this closeup shot of the fun pattern on the dream pillow I've had since middle school. It's not very exciting, but I figured I was entitled to a dud after last night's awesome shot.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Day 226 - Most Awesome Screw Up EVER!

Brian and I went to ceramics a day early since he and Nell will be out of town this weekend, and afterward we drove by the ocean so that I could take my photo. There were two blinking red lights casting a really fun reflection in the water. While Brian was setting up the tripod, I tried hand-holding my camera to get the shot. The light meter called for a SIXTY SECOND exposure and I got tired of trying to hold my hand still about halfway through and started just moving the camera around as if I weren't trying to take a shot. To my surprise, the resulting image looks freaking AMAZING!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Day 225 - Scary Mask

This is a shot of one of my many masks. (I had to ask myself why I have so many, considering they kind of freak me out.) I really like the asymmetrical composition and the heavy shadows.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Day 224 - Whale Watching, Take 2

Today we cashed in our free whale watching trip and—wouldn't you know it!—we saw six pairs of mothers and calves. The first two shots are of spyhopping—I like the first because it gives a bit of scale and the second because you can see how close some of these whales were to shore). The third is of a calf's fin as it does a roll. The fourth and fifth show the whale's back. The fifth one is interesting because you can see how much oil seepage was in the water in this one spot. I was like "Nooooo whale! Don't swim through all that oil!" But it was like "Whatevs." Yeah.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Day 223 - So... I Might Have a Thing for Waterfowl

After a tandem ride downtown for lunch, Brian and I went to Lake Los Carneros to see what we could photograph. It's a nice little lake with walking trails, but it turns out there's not that much worth photographing. We ended up taking shots of ducks on the lake, which were pretty boring until one of the ducks decided to spaz out a bit. Luckily, both of us had our cameras trained on him and were able to get shots of his momentary freakout.

I realized today that I've taken a lot of pictures of waterfowl, specifically ducks. Next to my cats and flowers, I think they're the most frequently featured subject on this blog. What does it mean???

Friday, April 13, 2012

Day 222 - Hairbrush... TO THE EXTREME!

This is the latest installment in my series of ridiculously closeup shots of everyday objects—in this case, my hairbrush with some of my hair in it. My camera nearly shit itself trying to take this photo; the use of a closeup filter, smallness of the subject, poor lighting, and variable depth of the bristles combined to make this a very challenging shot. Unfortunately, I was too sleepy by the time I took this to really work at it, so the results are a bit meh. I really like my idea, though, and how weird and almost alien the shot looks.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Day 221 - Elim amongst the Shower Curtains

Today was another busy evening; Carey, Jeff, and I attended a lecture given by Annie Leonard at UCSB and then went to HBC to discuss (over beer, of course). As I was scrambling to get ready, I noticed Elim sitting on the bathtub sill between the two shower curtains being particularly adorable, so I took a quick shot. The lighting could have been better, but I still like it.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Day 220 - Bougainvillea

My ceramics class started today, so I had very little time to take my photo. I chose a quick shot of the bougainvillea that's slowly taking over my front courtyard. Everyone likes these things, but I don't see why—they're thorny as hell, grow like a weed, and have rather boring flowers. Although I guess I shouldn't badmouth anything that provides an easy photo op.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Day 219 - Awesome Flower

As promised, here's a shot of the cool flower I saw yesterday. I feel like I should know what this is, but I don't—I'm hopelessly dumb when it comes to identifying plants. I was using one of my closeup filters, so the shot didn't come out as clear as I'd hoped, but I still like it.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Day 218 - Leaf at Sunset

Today on my morning run I saw some flowers that I thought would look nice in the setting sun, but when I came back this evening the effect wasn't as cool as I'd expected. I did, however, see some leaves lit up nicely by the setting sun. I like how there's a glowing outline around the leaf. Bonus: I found some friggin cool flowers that I plan to take shots of sometime this week (the lighting wasn't great by the time I noticed them).

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Day 217 - Nothing Says Easter Like a Shitty Picture of a Guitar

Today was a busy day and I ended up not having time to take a photo during daylight hours. So I decided to take a quick shot of my guitar, which turned out to be really difficult because the scratch guard created shine and glare. Oh well—I feel like I've had some good photos recently, so I guess it was time for a dud.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Day 216 - Whale Watching, Take 1

I'd gotten Brian a whale watching gift certificate for his birthday, so today he, Nell, and I went to go see some whales. We only found one gray whale and it was being very uncooperative. We did, however, see a pod of dolphins. That was really cool—they were swimming right next to the boat and we could even hear them making their little dolphin noises. Unfortunately, I had the wrong lens on my camera (I figured they'd be much further away) and didn't have time to switch out lenses. Also, most of my images came out overexposed and the motion of the boat made it hard for the camera to focus. This is about the best I could get. What's awesome is that the company felt the gray whale sighting wasn't sufficient, so they gave us a rain check—we get to go again for free! Next time I think I'll just use my point-and-shoot.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Day 215 - Duck in Flight

I've become a little obsessed with taking pictures of birds in flight—partially because I think it makes for an interesting picture and partially because it's so freaking challenging. As I was walking to work this morning, I saw the duckies by my old apartment complex and stopped to take a few quick shots. One of the ducks flew off and I was lucky enough to snap this (relatively) decent shot of it.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Day 214 - Elim Sitting Like a Drunken Bear

I spent most of tonight catching up on TV shows, paying bills, and sorting through all my photos from the last week or so. As a result, I almost forgot to take a photo for the day! Elim has this habit of sitting on his back in my chair (which, to me, looks like a drunken bear), so I took this quick shot of him grooming himself in that weird position. Not that clear of a shot (poor lighting plus a moving cat), but I think the composition is cute.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Day 213 - Sometimes Things Just Look Better in Your Mind

For the last few months, I've had this idea in my head to take a shot of someone's feet walking up a staircase. In my head, it looks amazing—the perspective is cool and the lighting is slanty with lots of fun shadows. It looks artsy and pretentious, but in an awesome way. So tonight I decided to try to make that happen, but it didn't turn out at all. First of all, I was super, super tired, so I didn't have much patience to tinker. Second, the lighting was not as I'd pictured it (or even really sufficient, for that matter). Third, I'd pictured it with a child's feet, so Brian's big man-feet didn't quite fit the bill (sorry Brian!). Oh well. Sometimes I guess things just look better in your mind's eye.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Day 212 - Goats and Swans

This afternoon, Brian and I walked out to the ocean via the slough to see what we could find. As it turned out, we found a fenced-off area with cute goats that had been put there to get rid of the vegetation. Even though there was an electric fence in the way, we were able to get quite close to them. This goat had just finished drinking from a bucket, and I love that you can see the water dripping off of its mouth. Then, as we were walking back, we saw a pair of swans swimming in the slough. The sunset wasn't spectacular, but the lighting really set off the swans nicely.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Day 211 - Bay Bridge at Sunrise

Today I spent another looooong eight hours on Amtrak. Luckily, as I was waiting for the bus at the Ferry Building, I had the chance to snap some photos of the Bay Bridge (which connects San Francisco and Oakland) at sunrise.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Day 210 - City View

Another fun day of sleeping in late, wandering around the city, and eating delicious food (I got to eat at my favorite place in the Bay Area—La Mediteranee). I also met Kerry's cousin Brian over brunch; he's into photography as well. While Kerry and I were exploring, we found this awesome wooded area sort of near UCSF. It had a ton of trees and walking trails—you couldn't even tell it was in the middle of the city. This shot is a view of the city bracketed by some trees that I took right as we were entering the naturey area.