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Berkeley Botanical Gardens 2004-11-27


Took a quick to the Berkeley Botanical gardens. The gardens are going into the winter dormancy period. However, it was still beautiful. I arrived late in the morning so started to hit full midday sun before too long. Probably for the best, I found out that my knees were sore from falling on the stone in Alameda creek on Thursday.

Had a good Thanksgiving. I did end up sleeping for almost 3 days. By Sunday, I feel rested. I hope that it lasts through the work week.

Point Reyes 2004-11-26


Went with C and CRF up to Point Reyes. The idea was to shoot the full moon (aka the Beaver Moon) from Mount Vision with a side of sunset. Well, it seems shooting the moon is very elusive. The top of Mount Vision was fogged in. We never saw the moon except for a little glow behind the clouds when we got home. Instead, we ended with a nice visit to the Beach and sightings of the Tule elk.

Sunol 2004-11-25


Took a short trip over to Sunol while CRF cooked Thanksgiving dinner at home. I thought I would have the park to myself. Instead, there was a ranger on duty and parking lot was about half full. When I arrived, the day was overcast with a little fog at the top of the hills. By the time I left, there was full sun.

Had a very nice Thanksgiving dinner. Afterward, I took a long nap. It was a peaceful day.

Photoshop Tip: Increasing Dynamic Range

Many times, I have wanted to shoot a scene only to discover that the dynamic range is well beyond the range of my digital camera to capture.  For my Canon 20D, the range is somewhere around 4 stops of light.  Using the following Photoshop recipe, you can extend your camera's dynamic range considerably.  One caveat is that this recipe only gives good results about 50% of the time for me.


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Point Lobos


Went with C to Point Lobos.  This is my first visit to the park.  It is spectacular.  Ironically, we had a perfect sunny day with no clouds and blue, blue skies.  That is the worst possible weather for taking photos.  However, I want to go back many times and keep trying.

Rented a Canon 24mm tilt shift lens for the weekend.  I had heard George Lepp speak so highly of the lens and present his amazing results that I needed to try it for myself.  Therefore, I had plans to shoot some tree shots looking up the trunks and various macro shots.  Reality was that I never quite figured how to really use the lens.  May try again at a later date.  For now, no plans to try out a tilt shift lens again.  Sigh.

Is it Christmas already?


With the Christmas season rapidly approaching, decided to try my hand at shooting a Christmas card. Went to Michaels for a few "Christmasy" things, the store was packed with Christmas stuff and shoppers. This makes me wonder if I am already too late to be ready for Christmas and we have not had Thanksgiving yet.

Trying to stage a shot taught me a few things.

Continue reading "Is it Christmas already?" »

Mother says "I'd Like to go to Hardees..."

Whenever I call my Mother, it is always an adventure. I called her a few days ago. She was very talkative and started a steady stream of conversation right after I said "Hello". Her monologue goes like this...

Continue reading "Mother says "I'd Like to go to Hardees..."" »

Photoshop Tip: 16MP from an 8MP Canon 20D

I recently purchased the new Canon 20D. I love the camera and am very pleased with its 8 MP of resolution. However, I have been curious about the resolution of the new Canon 1DS Mark II, which is a 16MP camera. Good news, you can use Photoshop to piece together a very high resolution image from multiple images. Here is an example image using this technique.


Continue reading "Photoshop Tip: 16MP from an 8MP Canon 20D" »

Photoshop Tip: Eye Movement

I recently attended a Photography Workshop in Jackson Hole, WY.  The teachers were Vincent Versace, Moose Peterson and David Black.  During the course of the workshop, Vincent provided demostration of how he moves a viewer's eye around his image.   Earlier, Vincent had presented a slideshow of his images and they were compelling.  However without Vincent's explanation, I would have been clueless to his technique. 

The technique of moving the viewer's eye provides a subtle but powerful improvement to your image.   

Grand Tetons 1_origl

Note: Roll mouse over image to see final results.

Continue reading "Photoshop Tip: Eye Movement" »

Weekend 11-12-2004


Spent a lazy weekend.  Started Friday nite with a migraine.  On Friday evening, took dogs for a short walk in Don Edwards near the fishing pier. I had never noticed the pier before! 

On Sunday, took a trip over to the coast south of Half Moon bay.  The tide and surf were very high.  I was planning a long hike in Butano.  Instead, just made a few quick stops at Bean Hollow Beach and Butano State Redwoods.  Headed home for a long nap.

Uvas Canyon 11-07-2004

20041107_uvas_canyon_mg_0379pJust started shooting with my new Canon 20D, which I love.  Decided I would protect my LCD with a Hoodman plastic cover.  Received the hoodman yesterday and carefully attached it over the LCD.  When I went our shooting, noticed concentric circles which were inside the hoodman.  So took a thin piece of plastic and carefully lifted up the Hoodman.  Unfortunately, I actually lifted up my LCD!  After an initial bout of horror, pieced both Hoodman and LCD back into the camera.  Everything seems to be working fine.  Now, I am afraid to touch it again. 

Got up early Sunday to go shooting with Trudy and Celia.  We all went adventuring today in Uvas Canyon.  With the fall rains, Uvas Canyon is magical again.  It was Trudy's first visit so it was fun to introduce her.  We spent 6 hours exploring the mile long waterfall loop.  Lots of fun.  On the way back, we discovered the Dollar Tree store and picked up a few bargains for good measure.

Sunol 11-06-2004


Got up on Saturday morning.  Bocifus was instantly on full alert for the possibility of going for an adventure.  After getting dressed, Miss Cho-Cho waddles in and gets in the action.  I tried to ignore the two dogs and go out by myself.  However, I had coyote howls, herding, the "paw" and moaning.  Since Chip was not around, I took both the dogs out to Sunol.  It got a little complicated with both the leashes and the tripod, but we all ended up having a good adventure.


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