Recent Updates

For this post, I thought I would post a few thoughts on some photos that I recently posted to the site.  I am working through a backlog of photos from the last year or so.  Like many people, I enjoy the taking of a photo more than the post processing, and the posting of the image.  I enjoy that part too… just not as much as the taking part.  I find that once I get a particularly nice looking shot to come out of lightroom, I am energized and keep working on the rest of them… then of course the momentum fades, and the pile starts to grow again.
















This guy was at the Columbus Zoo, taken August 13th, 2016.  I really like the implied emotion of this shot.  It leaves me wondering about the importance of a zoo for the care and preservation of animals, and balanced against the reality of keeping animals in captivity.  I feel overall that their individual sacrifice is for the greater good of the species.  (If you had never seen an elephant at the zoo, I woould bet we would not care as much or even at all about ivory, and all the destruction it does) I am sure that the hopelessness look of this fella is more about me projecting human thoughts and emotions on to an animal, but to me  he really does look depressed.































The 2 dragonflies above were take much more recently.  I discovered that with the trade in of several lenses I didn’t use much, I could purchase a new Sigma 150-600 lens.    That beast of a lens is an awesome piece of glass.  The blue guy is a fairly heavy crop, and the other one is only slightly cropped.  It is a darn sharp lens.  I have to micro adjust it, and get it dialed in even more, the potential scares me a bit.   Easily an excellent upgrade to what I was using (a Sigma 150-500)

This extra lens issue is what happens when you are a true amateur.  I am a nature photographer, I need to just accept it.  However, I constantly think I will shoot other things, so I buy lenses, and equipment to allow for that type of shooting, only to discover it isn’t my thing, I lose interest, and the equipment goes unused.  I would like to think that since I know this, I will stop… but it’s not likely.

















Why this one…. why not.  He is cute.  (Also from the Columbus Zoo… though he was not an exhibit, he was wild)

Thanks for reading.  I will try to post more soon.

Drone Photography

I decided to dabble into drone/aerial photography a bit.  I purchased a Hubsan H501s quad-copter with a 2MP 1080p camera on it.  Not the best camera, but good enough for a start.  I would hate to invest thousands only to find out that it isn’t an activity that I will end up doing much.



I have high hopes for what this could end up looking like.  It sounds fun, but there are challenges.  The first is restricted airspace, and the second is personal.  The restricted airspace is a basic challenge.  There are laws and rules.  In the US, there is the FAA, and first let me say that I did register with the FAA.  People complain about it, but it took less than 10 minutes and cost $5.  I wrote my number on the top of my drone.  Done.  Complainers, get over it, it isn’t a big deal.  Next from a legal point of view is where can you fly.  Technically nearly anywhere, except….within 5 miles of an airport without contacting the airport or the tower for permission first, and of course not over a sporting event, or military base.  Thats the big obvious ones.   There are also smaller restrictions, like Disney World, and other temporary restrictions, like the Republican National Convention this summer, etc.  Also no flying in most of Washington DC, and much of Manhattan.    The problem comes in with the other not so obvious restriction.  No flying over National Parks and properties controlled by the US Dept of the Interior/National Park Service.  This eliminates my beloved, and local Cuyahoga Valley National Park.  The good news is that other parks are not as restrictive, and I can still fly within the county metroparks that intermix with the National Park, so long as I don’t fly over the National Park.  Confused… yep, now you see the problem.





 Second is the personal issues.  I am not one who enjoys being stared at and watched.  A guy flying a drone in public is a spectacle.  People wondering what you are doing, questioning and judging whether its legal, etc.  The inevitable… “Maybe he is a terrorist”, and of course that fun do-gooder who feels that they need to contact “someone” so they call the police.  It happens, more often that you think.  And then there is the cop driving by who “just wants to check and see what you are doing.”  In the absence of clear direction, they decide for no real reason, that “you can’t do that here”  even when there is no reason not to, and no law or rule restricting it.  Most of this is not my idea of fun.  I am trying to push through my personal issues, and maybe this will be a step in the right direction.










 In the end my goals would be to shoot trains, and maybe some lighthouses (not federally controlled or on military/coast guard bases).  I have seen some photos from others, and am really impressed with the possibility.


These 3 photos are from my very first flight.  They are from my neighborhood, actually from my back yard.  You may notice the airport in the second photo.  I did contact them, and I have permission to fly, with some minor altitude restrictions.  That photo is from approx 200ft up, and is the restricted limit from them.  The max the FAA will allow is 400 ft, and it scares me to think of flying that high.

A different kind of magic

Bald Eagle – Epcot, Walt Disney World, Florida

A few years ago the family went to Disney World in Florida.  While the trip was intended to be a family vacation with rides, shows and food, I tried to find time to get some shooting in (more of that in another post).  As it turned out, one of the best Disney magical moments had nothing to do with Mickey Mouse.

On our last day we decided to sneak in an additional day at Epcot.  We had 2 days there earlier in the week that got rained out, and we really wanted to sample some food at the Food and Wine Festival.

Not long before we left the park for the 20 hour drive home, I noticed a black bird flying overhead.  It was a my favorite bird, a bald eagle, and even better it was getting lower and closer.  I didn’t have my 500 mm lens in the park with me, so it would have to be really close to have any chance.  Over the next few minutes, this eagle soared closer and closer until it was right overhead, and extremely low.  I felt like I pressed the shutter button so much that my finger would fall off.  Each WOW! moment was followed up by an even better shot a few second later.  After a few minutes of this, I started “working” the bird.  Waiting for the right light,  best angle,wing position, etc.  This photograph was certainly one of the highlights of the moment.   Overall, it was the best part of the trip, at least photographically.


Here is another … click on either image to make it larger or to view the rest of my photos.

Bald Eagle – Epcot, Walt Disney World, Florida

First Post

Welcome to my blog.  I recently decided to follow up on an old New Years resolution to do more with my photos.  I take them and process and post them, but that’s it.   So here is my attempt to do more with them.  I hope you find it interesting.