Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Monday, July 30, 2012
Sunday, July 29, 2012
So, after owning my phone for at least two and a half years, today I discovered for the first time that the wall charger is actually a USB cable plugged into a wall charger and I can, in fact, use it to easily transfer photos from my phone to my computer. Durrr. So, to celebrate this momentous discovery, I took a phone self portrait. A little silly, I know, and the quality of the phone camera isn't that good, but whatever, my photo for the day is taken care of.
Saturday, July 28, 2012
Even though today was a busy Saturday (six hours of overtime and a lot of other chores), I managed to get in a walk around the neighborhood while the sun was still out. I really, really tried not to take a flower photo. I took some photos of backlit leaves, some blurry bee shots, and even some photos of a super depressing lost cat poster. But, in the end, this amethyst rose was the most striking (and they are my favorite of all the rose colors). The yard they're in has seriously every color of rose ever.
Friday, July 27, 2012
Thursday, July 26, 2012
Tonight I went out to see if the moon was doing anything worth photographing (it wasn't) and noticed that the silhouette of Elim in the kitchen window was quite striking. I actually really like how this one turned out—it sort of makes him look like a ghost.
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
I actually managed to think of a neat photo idea in the midst of all this overtime and getting-ready-to-move business. This shot of a corkscrew could have been a bit clearer (story of my life), but I like the shape and the shadow it casts on the pillowcase I was using as a background.
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Since I knew I was going to be super busy, I took a few photos of a white "Santa Barbara" flower (which I have since learned is called Agapanthus, or Lily of the Nile). Unfortunately, I didn't look at the shots until late at night and when I realized they had all been pretty blurry, it was too late to do anything about it. Stupid flower. Oh well.
Monday, July 23, 2012
Today marks the start of my three weeks of overtime hell, so I have a feeling my photos will suffer accordingly. Anyway, Elim loves boxes, but tonight he didn't want to cooperate and sit still in one while I took his picture. But this shot of him mid-jump, while not the clearest in the world, is pretty amusing.
Sunday, July 22, 2012
While we were in Yosemite, Nell picked up a tiny feather from one of the bluejays (?) at our campsite and I've been carrying it around ever since. This shot didn't come out that well because it was such an extreme close-up (the whole feather is about an inch long and this section is probably less than a centimeter). I just don't have the equipment to get a really clear shot at this level of magnification. But I like the lines and the vividness of the color. I've taken a few other shots like this, so I'm officially retiring feathers as a photo subject.
Saturday, July 21, 2012
Today while I was cleaning up and decompressing from my trip, I heard a tiny bird rustling around in my backyard. I then proceeded to spend the next half hour trying to find it (it's one of those tiny birds that likes to hide in bushes) and photograph it without scaring it away. This photo isn't great and the bird isn't particularly attractive, but I'm proud of myself for taking the time to get the shot.
Friday, July 20, 2012
For my last day, Nell and Brian took me to see Red Rock Canyon, one of their favorite climbing spots. The name is definitely accurate—the first two photos show just how red the rocks are. The third and fourth photos are views from our hike into Pine Tree Canyon, which is believed to be a biotic remnant from the last ice age. Hiking in the desert at noon in July was probably not the wisest decision, but I'm glad I got to see a tiny bit of the place before my flights home.
Thursday, July 19, 2012
Perfect timing—it started raining just as we were breaking camp. This morning we checked out the Hetch Hetchy region and the O'Shaughnessy Dam, which flooded that entire valley in the mid-1910s in order to create a drinking water reservoir for San Francisco.
Even though we were only in Yosemite for about three and a half days, we visited all the different sections and worked in a lot of awesome stuff. I'm so glad I got to see it before leaving California.
On our drive to Vegas, we stopped at Mono Lake, which was unexpectedly fascinating. It's a lake without an outlet, so it's extremely salty and home to a lot of brine shrimp, which in turn makes is an important breeding/feeding ground for seagulls (it's freaking hell and gone from the ocean). And, once LA started diverting some of the water, the lake level dropped significantly, exposing these cool limestone tufas. I'm especially pleased with the clouds and moody lighting in the third shot.
Tonight we stayed in a hotel in Vegas and I got to take a shower for the first time on this trip. Yay!
Wednesday, July 18, 2012
For our last day in Yosemite, we went into the valley and did some of the popular stuff (there'd been relatively few people everywhere else, which was nice). The main event was a hike up the Mist Trail to Vernal Falls and then up a little further toward Nevada Falls via the John Muir Trail and then back down. The Mist Trail is ridiculously steep and the steps cut into the cliffside are sketchy as hell, but the waterfalls were beautiful. The first three shots are of Vernal Falls from several different angles, the fourth shot is of the Emerald Pool, and the fifth shot is of Nevada Falls.
We then checked out (but didn't bother hiking to) Lower Yosemite Falls (sixth photo) and Bridalveil Falls (last photo), which were both barely a trickle.
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Today we checked out the Tioga Pass area, which is at quite a high altitude. First stop was Olmstead Point, which offered some pretty amazing views of Clouds Rest. Then we drove up to Tuolumne Meadows, from which we hiked to Budd Lake. This wasn't an official trail (it's used mostly by climbers), so we lost it a few times, but we passed only a few people and had the lake, once we found it, all to ourselves. The high altitude (about 9,500 feet) made this hike a bit challenging for me, but it was totally worth it. Getting to swim in an alpine lake was amazing. The third photo is a shot of Cathedral Peak from the lake.
Oh, and by this point I was using my point-and-shoot exclusively, because it was much easier to tote around and those damned spots were showing up again in my 14–45mm lens.
Monday, July 16, 2012
This morning we drove into Yosemite via the southern entrance. The first stop was the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias. I really, really wish I'd had a wider-angled lens, because even the 14mm couldn't capture the sheer enormousness of these trees. We saw a lot of famous trees, including the Grizzly Giant and the Tunnel Tree.
Next, we drove up to the Glacier Point area and did a short hike to Westfall Meadow, which was very serene and unpeopled. Then it was off to Glacier Point itself, where I got a great view of Half Dome (I still can't believe Brian climbed that freaking thing!).
On our way in to Yosemite Valley to get pizza for dinner, Nell let me have the front seat so I could get the full effect of emerging from the tunnel into the valley. It was an incredible feeling, something I'll remember for the rest of my life.
Not pictured: Brian's failed slide down a banister, resulting in the untimely demise of our leftover pizza. I'm still giggling about that one.
Sunday, July 15, 2012
I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to accompany Nell and Brian on the first leg of their cross-country road trip. Today we spent most of the day in the car, driving up to our campsite at Spring Cove, along Bass Lake in the Sierra National Forest. There wasn't much light left by the time we'd made camp, so I just took a few quick shots of the lake.
Saturday, July 14, 2012
Friday, July 13, 2012
One of the things I really wanted to do before Nell and Brian left town was play with the star filter Brian got for Christmas, which, as the name suggests, gives lights a star effect. So tonight we went downtown and staked a spot on State Street to photograph the streetlights and cars going by. The filter proved much harder to use than either of us expected. These two shots are my favorites. I also like how the car in the first shot has the word "sexy" in its license plate number.
Thursday, July 12, 2012
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
Another very busy day. Luckily, Orange Kitty was hanging around (as always), so I snapped this quick shot of her from grass-level. I do like how the angle makes her look a bit more imposing and as if she's surveying her dominions.
Monday, July 9, 2012
Today was a busy day, and luckily I brought my camera to work. Unfortunately, there wasn't much that caught my eye, and I ended up taking a bunch of photos of rims in the parking lot. I liked this BMW one the best. That's all I have to say about that.
Sunday, July 8, 2012
Today was a pretty relaxed day. There was sleeping in, nappage, a bit of shopping and selling stuff from Craigslist, and the new Spiderman movie (which was actually really good). I was a bit remiss in taking my photo, so toward the end of the night I just took this quick shot of some sprinkles on a cupcake. Kind of crappy photo, but very yummy cupcake.
Saturday, July 7, 2012
Today I went down to LA for the baptism of my cousin's daughter, Lauren. The day was particularly awesome for three reasons: 1) three people guessed my age to be 16–19, 2) the baptism was Romanian Orthodox, which apparently starts with an exorcism... that's right folks, I've now officially witnessed an exorcism, and 3) Porto's did the catering for the reception! The second photo (of Lauren's godfather swinging his own daughter around on the dance floor) didn't come out well, but I still thought it was very cute.
Friday, July 6, 2012
Tonight, before meeting up with Kerry who's in town for the evening, I went to Nell's post-defense cookout. Some folks had set up a slackline, and although I only managed to take two steps, others did quite well. I liked this one of Jeff the best.
Thursday, July 5, 2012
Tonight I hung out with Carey, drank wine, and made cupcakes for Nell's party tomorrow. Of course that meant mostly gorging ourselves on cupcake batter. Soooo good! These shots didn't come out that well because of the lighting, but they're an accurate representation of what was going on and they make me smile.
Wednesday, July 4, 2012
Since today was Independence Day, of course I was going to take photos of the fireworks. I went over to watch them from Nell and Brian's house (with Nell's parents), and Brian was nice enough to lend me his tripod and impart the knowledge he gained while trying to get good shots last year. Most of my photos came out okay, but this one was definitely the best.