Thursday, March 15, 2018

Behind the photos: "A tale of three photos: The snow berries of Jenkins Creek Park"

This is the setup I used to take the snow berry photos: _DSC0381

This set up consists of a Nikon D200, Nikon 105mm F4 Macro lens with the dedicated 52.5mm extension tube mounted on a macro focusing rail, all mounted on a Bogen/Manfrotto 390 tripod. Not pictured is an electronic release, that I use to avoid introducing additional motion when releasing the shutter into the camera system which may result in a blurry photo.

This specific lens, and the 55mm lens I have as well, will by itself (without the extension tube) do a 1:2 reproduction ratio, or 1/2 life size. The extension tube allows the 105mm to focus to a 1:1 reproduction ratio, or life size. However, the extension tube "costs" some light for the exposure, however, the built in meter will compensate for that. It also will not allow the lens to focus to infinity, so with the extension tube on, the lens will not focus to normal ranges. It also includes a tripod collar, similar to that found on longer telephotos/telephoto zooms, which allows me to rotate the camera for verticals, rather than using the tripod head's tilt function, so as to avoid repositioning the camera. I prefer the 105mm because it provides a greater working distance so as to avoid disturbing the subject.

The tripod is essential for macro work, because even a slight adjustment in the position of the camera can result in the photo being blurry or out of focus due to the shutter speeds and subject distances involved. It also has the ability to spread the tripod legs further out than most tripods, useful for low angle work. The macro focusing rail allows me to set the reproduction ratio (Life size or 1:1, here) and then move the camera back and forth to adjust the focus, because the reproduction ratio is set by how close the focus distance is set.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

A tale of three photos: The snow berries of Jenkins Creek Park

The park behind my house has these berry bushes (possibly snow berries) all over the park, and they are handy subjects for some macro work. We had a white Christmas for the first time in 9 years and I was inspired to take these first two photos while wandering the park: Snow on Snow Berry Snow on Snow Berries

This photo was taken about a year earlier: Water drop on a snow berry stem

Thanks for looking, and as always, feel free to comment!

Monday, February 13, 2017

My apologies for a lack of posts, and the B-29 bomber Fifi.

First of all, I'd like to apologize for the lack of posts, I've been pretty uninspired, my Darkroom is out of order, and I've been more focused on building an IT career.

One of my off and on interests has been military history and military aviation. A few years ago, the Commemorative Air Force's B-29 bomber Fifi, one of only two flight worthy B-29's, visited the Seattle area, for the first time since the 1980's. Fifi was built at Boeing's Renton Factory, which now produces 737 airliners. My dad and I were able to visit her while she was at Boeing Field and the Museum of Flight.

Fifi's Nose
The B-29 was innovative as one of the first pressurized bombers, for increased comfort for the crew, and to enable her to function as a very high altitude bomber aircraft.

The cockpit
The pilots, navigator, and flight engineer all share the nose of the aircraft with the bombardier, unlike in previous bombers such as the B-17 and B-24.

The Navigator's position
The navigator's position, situated behind the pilot.

The Flight Engineer's position
This is the Flight engineer's position, situated behind the co-pilot.

The tunnel to the gunner's position
The B-29 is equipped with several remote controlled machine gun positions and a manned tail gun position. This tunnel runs above the bomb bay to the gunner's compartments.

Fifi's Bomb bay
The bomb bay, the reason for the aircraft's existence, of course. However, there were also variants for other roles as well, including search and rescue, for which the aircraft carried a life boat, and as a pioneer in the development of air refueling.

One of the prop hubs
The prop pitch motor, which controls the angle of the propeller blades, is hidden under the prop hub.

A Prop and Engine
One of the massive four bladed props and engines, there are four of these engines and propellers.

An improved version, with bigger engines, and later supplemented with jet engines, was the B-50, which also served as aerial tankers, before finally being replaced by jet powered bombers such as the B-52 and jet powered tanker aircraft such as the KC-135. Thanks for looking, and as always, feel free to comment!

Friday, March 8, 2013

New blog posts coming!

Sorry, I haven't been too active with my photography over the past two or so years, so there hasn't been much to post about, but I do plan on getting back out into the field soon with some fresh work. In the mean time, I will explain about one of the ways that I find about many of these sites.

While I first heard about Franklin from a newspaper article several years ago, after I got into Geocaching in 2005, I discovered that there was a geocache there, which my dad and I visited in 2007, and that site visit sparked the idea to use IR film to photograph the site later that year. Many of the other sites that I have posted about, I first learned about through Geocaching, including remnants of the Pacific Coast Railroad line to Black Diamond and Franklin, the Newcastle operations, and others as well. This abandoned mail truck is a good example.

I will be posting more photos of it to come, along with other new sites, and I do intend to finish the Roslyn project as well. I recently discovered the exact location of one of the few mostly intact mine structures left from the Kittitas County coal mining operations, a fan house possibly from the #3 mine.

"Driving" the mail truck

Friday, January 14, 2011

Misc. IR 1

A few of my other IR images.

Infrared 3
A goal post at a nearby elementary school

Infrared 2
A picnic table at the same school

Infrared 1
An old tree at a nearby park.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Digital IR

I've been experimenting with digital IR methods, using a R72 filter on my D70, a filter which passes only IR. (though if you hold it up to a light, you can see a dim image through it) It requires the use of a tripod, as long exposures are the norm, do to the limited IR sensitivity. I prefer the film look, though the digital camera adds color to the IR, which produces some interesting effects.

Self Portrait in IR

My first successful digital IR image, featuring myself (I was finally able to figure out how to get a good white balance.)

Ferns on a tree

A cluster of ferns growing on a tree in the park behind my house, not uncommon in the Pacific Northwest forest.

Spring Creek Pond Outlet

The outlet of a large pond in the park, known as Spring Creek Pond. I chose to leave the color, as I thought the color was rather interesting. (The color in the other images didn't really add anything.)

On Spring Creek Pond

A tree growing on the pond bank.
Thanks for looking, and as always, feel free to comment!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Macro photography

Much of my photography has been about seeing things from a different perspective, one that is not often seen. The medium of photography has been always that way, as it gives us a means of seeing the world as others view it, but the average individual with a camera tends to take photos without really looking closer at their subject or finding a diffrent means of photographing a subject. Macro photography is one of my favorite techniques of looking at a subject differently. It is a method that is effective because the human eye is not capable of seeing close up easily due to the nature of the eye, which is designed to see things from an average perspective. Cameras, on the other hand, can be designed to look at up to microscopic levels. Looking at the world from a life size or half life size perspective produces a window into things that we do not naturally see.
American Flag
This American flag is a prime example. Most people wouldn't notice without the aid of a camera that there are actually tiny holes in the fabric that allow light to pass through the fabric.
Nor would they be able to notice the subtle play of light and texture of this leaf.
Dandilion Seed pod
The subtle texture and softness of this dandilion seed pod is also better emphasized through macro photography. Thanks for looking, and feel free to comment!