Vanilla. My previous shots of the passionflower were straight on vertical macro shots. I got a different view. Yay! I’m working. I’m reinventing myself. I am searching for something a bit different. It’s never too late to change. Technically good but same and albeit boring. We’ve seen it before. No problem. I did this for a couple years now. Catalog worthy images for the flower book.

It’s work in progress. For this image I was standing below the blossom. It was blooming on the deck above me. So, this was a low angle shot and landed me with a different composition than ordinary. It almost appears that the blossom was cut into two. Nope. Just a different view. Okay!

U pick

I’m in a rut. Macro flower pics are merging into one another. I need to break out of the routine shots. Face on flowers – it’s like anatomy lessons. Create. Creative. Change things up. Do something different. Art. It’s not science. It’s not clinical. Get a different viewpoint. See it! Don’t just document it. My bad. I have been in this technical loop for a couple years now. It’s nice. But it ain’t art. Think outside the box. Message: to myself for myself! Gee! Duh! Wake up!

Ummm….a slight curve, spray the flowers. Mist. It’s different. Same view but different texture. I would say focus is a key. Sharpness is good. The whole bloom is boring. Now, to break out of this tendency to just document another blossom in the garden.

Okay! … working on it. Macro changed things for me. It allowed me to focus on fine detail. But there is a lot of work to make composition more interesting. For now it has been simple anatomy lessons, a catalog, ..boring.

Fine line

An image works, or, it doesn’t. You kind of just know it. Composition, focus, lighting, it all plays into the decision. In this image the center of the petunia blossom is in focus. The petals are subtly properly exposed. Composition is good setting the white flower among pink. It all kind of comes together and works to make a nice image. I have so many other good images. Which to pick? Oh my!

One shot

Pick one. … to go with birthday wishes. Ummm, no card. Shhh… I forgot! Oh now! It will be a special day! We got all sorts of things planned. And to finish? Dinner in a favorite restaurant. I got it covered. A sentiment? Sure. I’m very lucky we met again. It was the third grade when we met. And then we parted for (decades) a very long time. Lucky. Sometimes life throws you rainbows. Happy birthday, my dearest.

Critique: Portrait. You want to try to be flattering. I used bounce flash. You get relative even lighting with less shadow. Composition: good. Smile: warm – like a hug. Background: it could be less cluttered. Focus: good. I could do better. This was a find after a quick perusal of the files in my catalog. Find one on the go!? Ha ha. It ain’t easy. Thankfully there were choices. Sorry, I didn’t get a card. I was remiss. We were never out where I was never alone to get one. But then a picture tells a thousand words. And there is little doubt I wish you the very best!

Calls to me

Colleen has a term. “It calls to me” to mean that something appeals to her though you might not quite understand what it means. More or less, it is a “gut” feeling otherwise unexplainable but understood non-verbally by me. Ok!? Got it? Ha!

It was “leaving” day. There were hugs, a few tears, and an emotional reluctant departure. Hey! This works. You get it in an instant. It’s not hello. It’s good-bye. … till we meet again.


After a long hiatus – ha ha – about nine years or so, give or take, I have revived this blog, sort of. My humor has not diminished. In fact, it’s probably more cracked than ever. I do not intend to publish with much regularity. Much of what I talk about will be how I got the shot and how the reader might learn. Tips. It’s about tips to improve your own photography – which is already perfect in every way.

Groups. First you gotta have one. Then you gotta herd them into position. Herding cats. Mostly folks are fairly cooperative. Ya gotta get them to look at the camera. Right!

At the end of the day, be sure everyone gets a copy. It will ensure cooperation when the next gathering comes next year.

I use flash. The bright “pop” gets everyone to notice that the camera is taking their picture. Someone always has their eyes closed. So be it. I do multiple takes. I do not overthink. And I do not Photoshop the image. I pick out the important people – me and Colleen – and make sure they look good. After that I publish one or two copies.

In this image I used a higher vantage point – staircase. I used a wide angle lens. It’s a group shot and they spread out! Flash helps to get even lighting and minimize shadows. More than one shot ensures that fewer people are caught with their eyes closed on any given shot.

See! Easy!? Right!

Low and Wide Angle

2371 01 MysticGetting low will give you another perspective that is often different. It makes the image stand out among all the others you may have. This means getting the camera to a low angle closer to the ground. The foreground will take a greater dominance. So this won’t work on everything. But wildflowers and rocks near the shore come to mind in images that I have seen. The effect makes the scene have more of a sense of depth. The flip side is that the background ship here is much less important.

Horizontal or Vertical

2370 34 MysticI tend to favor horizontal shots lately. It’s because the format of the computer screen lends itself to horizontal images. Vertical is important to remember. And now we have the convenience of panorama and square cropping. Keep them in mind to enhance your image. And remember to crop. Here you have two choices. I lean toward the horizontal. It’s your call.

2370 33 Mystic


2371 08 MysticSometimes it’s not necessary to see the whole object. In this case the ship is a common shot. But focusing in on a detail of the structure would bring the viewers attention in a way that is unique. It can be the difference that makes the shot stand out. With digital it’s ok to get a wide view and close up. But I find that the zoomed in shots tend to hold more interest.

Wide Angle

2371 16 Mysticit’s an interesting shot. There are foreground elements and there’s the tall ship in the background. What’s disconcerting is the wide angle distortion. It looks like the tall ship is falling out of the picture toward the back. Somehow in a vertical picture the distortion seems more noticeable. But the shot does stop you for a second look. Here’s an instance where cropping can’t really save you. I like the colors, probably helped by a polarizing filter. I am still a sucker for that brilliant blue cloudless sky. Hey! I tried to get all the elements into the image. Not bad, but it could’ve been better.