Dec 282009


Late today I ran over to the Phoenix Arboretum.  Not a lot of time being that the sun goes down so early.  It was fun!

cactusfields Cactus everywhere!

cactuslinesCactus from other countries!  phoenixthrasher

And birds that eat cactus!  Wow!

 Posted by at 11:32 PM
Dec 272009

HoverHad a chance tonight to peruse my bird files from last summer.  One of my favorites is this shot.  Tonight I added a mask to give it some depth.  It is the same mask I used last night with the Kestral and the Hawk.  A little “artsy fartsy”, but I like it.

 Posted by at 9:40 PM
Dec 262009


Do you realize how many pictures I have of this bird “passing” by?  A bunch!  Tonight I sat at the bird refuge for about two hours.  I am hoping that patience will get me an opportunity to photograph this guy flying directly at me.   Tonight I made two obvious mistakes.  The biggest?  I forgot my two long lenses.  Makes of a real dumb and unprepared photographer.  Instead of getting the book Photography for Dummies, maybe I should just get a huge button that says “Dummy Photographer”!   The second mistake?  I didn’t lock the gate behind me.  I may have forgotten my long lenses but at least I didn’t forget to bring my brain.

Most of the photography at the refuge is done from the car (car-tography).  If you exit your car the subjects will run, fly or swim away.  While photographing the Kestral a car pulled up to mine.  And out comes Mr. Photogrtapher with camera in hand…..and off goes the bird!  Sure a few poses of the Kestral made it to my compact flash card.  I just wanted to get a pic’ of him in flight.  The killer?  The guy walked up to my car and asked “did ya get any shots of that bird”?  Deep breath Jim, deep breath.  I wanted to say “not now”.   but instead I said “what bird’?   Sometimes I can be real nasty!


 Posted by at 7:37 PM
Dec 222009


It’s snowing in Prescott.  At Links Lake the fog is thick.  Tonight was time for some “phoggy” photography.   The scenes took on the look of high key shots.


At least the water fowl were moving about.  Put the panning to the test!


I was lucky to be there.  As opposed to this frog’s luck.  As he was dinner for this duck.   Are frog legs a delicacy for a duck?

All shots were at ISO 3200 and 1/1600, f/3.8

 Posted by at 10:17 PM
Dec 222009


Late last night (very late) my camera finger got a little itchy!  Made a quick trip to the Walmart vegetable department and borrowed some black and some white paper from the Hotel.  Why mushrooms?  I was intrigued by the shape and very light texture.

blackandwhiteonionGreen Onions?  The scourge of the earth!  The most evil “plant” on earth!  Fun to photograph.  Pure white bulb to dark stems.  I could not even see the color when I bought them. By the way they are double bagged and I handle with gloves.  These things have to be a punishment for man from God.  Anyway a pretty wide spectrum for black and white.

Green Onions

I felt that I needed to make these awful monsters look their best.  Topaz  filters helped.  At least this is the best evil food can look!  People eat these things????? Yikes!

 Posted by at 9:16 AM
Dec 192009


All day everyday.  He hunts.  Beautiful and deadly.  The Harrier is mesmerizing to watch.  Even more fun to………. photograph.

Farmington Bay Refuge: D3, 200-400mm lens, 1.7 teleconverter, f6.7 @ 1/1600, ISO 3200.

 Posted by at 11:02 PM
Dec 152009


Early this morning the hunter (Northern Harrier) was out.  He patrols the same areas throughout the day.  His flight is deliberate and not rushed.  The slight breeze keeping his wings apart only brief adjustments to keep him on course.  Always inspecting the ground.   Familiar though it may be his eyes seek movement and an eventual snack.

On the ground at waters edge is the hunted (Curlew).  A very small winged relative?  About the size of a dinner roll.  A beak at least the length of his body.   Fear emanates from his eyes.  As the hunter searches overhead this little guy shrinks in size and flattens to the ground.  Only just before the hunter approaches he sprints away only inches off the ground.  The short distance takes him to the other waters edge, out of site of the approaching hunter.  A lucky coincidence the hunter did not see the movement.   Hopefully the little bird has another day to experience.


 Posted by at 10:04 PM
Dec 132009

It’s Sunday afternoon.  Been home resting and enjoying no schedule.  Raining and snowing outside.  Time to look at the archives.  This is why I like having the camera to my eye more than sitting at the computer.  I mess with the picture more than I should.  This photograph taken a couple of years ago at Cedar Breaks is one of my favorite scenics.  The colors are dramatic.  It really needed to be painted by someone good at painting.  That’s not me.  So Topaz software comes to the rescue.  The scene does not change.  Same elements.  A digital software adjustment.  Literally one click!  I kinda like it.  Mostly because I cold never paint it.


 Posted by at 5:03 PM