My first photo

As far as I know this is the first photo I ever took. I was around 12 years old. We were on a family road trip and stopped for lunch. Next door there was a pond with swans and I wanted to take a picture, so my dad gave me his camera to take a shot. (I think it was a Rollei TLR, loaded with black & white film). After the trip my dad brought me this contact print. I was a little disappointed that the swans were too small to see in the picture, but I saved it. Years later, when it turned up in an old scrapbook I decided it was a nice picture after-all, at least for a 12 year old beginner, so I scanned it for my collection and now its online.


Hungry Hawk

Mid-October, Sunday afternoon.
I walked into the kitchen to find our house cat sitting on the table and gazing intently out the back window. Looking out, I saw a large predator bird, a hawk I think, perched on the deck railing with a freshly caught meal, probably a pigeon. I found a camera and took this picture through the window.


Hoping for a better shot, I went out the front door and walked around the house but as soon as I came around the back corner, about 50 feet away, it saw me and stared right at me. I took a quick pic and backed away as it seemed like it might abandon lunch if I stuck around.


Back inside I was able to get much closer as the window was only about 6 feet away and the big bird didn’t seem to notice us through the window. So I found the cleanest spot on the window and took more pictures from there. It ate everything, leaving nothing but a grease spot and a feather on the railing. It stuck around and posed for a while before flying off. The whole episode was about an hour.

Here’s some more of the pictures.












all photos by the author.
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November Lunch Stop – just some pics

Last weekend we took a little road trip to run some errands and take in some fall scenery. By early afternoon we were getting hungry and decided to stop at a restaurant we like for some lunch. One feature of this place is that it sets next to a creek with a waterfall. There had been several rainy days in a row and the creek level was much higher than I’d ever seen it.
There’s a dining room that looks out right over the falls and we got a table by the window. I only had my camera phone with me (and its an oldie), but I took some pics out the window. Here’s a couple of them…


Water glass and view at the Log Cabin restaurant

After lunch I stopped to take a few more pictures from the parking lot. This is one I liked.

In the picture, I was interested in the upper left corner, where the mist from the water and the sky and the colors of the trees all seemed to blend together. I did a crop of the area and produced this somewhat pleasing pic.

I took a few other pics from the same spot and discovered that they stitched together nicely in Lightroom resulting in this pano.

That’s all, just some fun with camera phone photos.


all photos by the author.
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Strange Bedfellows

I found my old 35mm film SLR, a Canon FTb. I haven’t used it in 25 years or more, though it still seems to work. I thought I might try selling it and buy a new lens for my digital camera but it turns out not to be very rare or valuable, so I’m not gonna get much for it. Then I found out there’s an adapter to mount the old Canon FD lens on my modern digital camera. So I got a hold of that, cleaned up the old lens and went out for a walk. Here’s some of the shots…













It’s a 50mm f1.8, but on the digital camera, which has a smaller image sensor, its equivalent to a 100mm lens on a full frame camera. There’s no auto focus mode for this lens, so I had to manually focus these shots. I also had to set the aperture manually, but I like to shoot aperture priority anyway, so I’m used to that. In fact I rather like having the aperture ring on the lens barrel, something I’ve always missed on the digital cameras I’ve used. All these shots are hand held (no tripod).

These pics are processed from raw files. Post-processing was limited to adjustments for white balance and ETTR, and in a few cases, tilt adjustment (I still can’t manage to consistently hold a camera level it seems), other than that no cropping. I did not apply any sharpening, as I wanted to see how the lens performs. Overall, I’m pretty pleased with it.

I down-scaled the images for the blog post, but the full size jpegs will be on Flickr, here:

The old Canon was my first ‘serious’ camera and I took a lot of pictures with this lens, back in the day. I only shot black and white with it then, but now I know it can handle color too, cool! So I end up with a ‘new’ lens after-all.

Sitting in the waiting room and waiting in the sitting room


I wrote the following a long time ago in an email to my friends. A lot of my friends really liked it and both of them said I should send it in to Readers Digest or something like that. I didn’t send it in, but I saved it. Now that I’ve found it again, I’m posting it here so my friends can read it again.



As some of you know I have developed an un-hip hip. An operation is scheduled for next week.

This afternoon I was at the hospital for pre-admission waiting room sitting. My sitting and waiting practice was interrupted for brief intervals of meetings with hospital administrators and technicians. First I met with a woman who asked a lot of questions and wanted lots of copies of my autograph. Then I got to practice waiting again.
Then I was taken to a little room where I had to get out of my street clothes and put on a paper gown. Then I got to practice sitting and waiting on an examination table for about twenty minutes. The paper gown ripped open as soon as I sat down.
I got to practice shivering for a while.
When the next lady came in she asked me the same questions all over again. I figured I must have got the answers wrong the first time, so I tried some different answers. Then she left. I still don’t know why I had to be wearing a ripped paper gown for her visit. Perhaps her job is really boring and she needs a little chuckle now and then.
After that I was allowed to sit and wait and shiver for a little while more.
Then the medical technician came in and stuck me in the arm a few times to make sure I could bleed. Once he was satisfied that I could bleed he went on to take some other measurements. Luckily, my paper gown was torn in all the right places to set the EKG probes. Even so, he took longer setting up the probes than it took to do the EKG. He measured all the other stuff too, like BP, pulse, height, weight, temperature and how much my hair had grown while I was practicing waiting.
When he left, I got to sit and wait again. My hair grew some. Then a nurse came in. I guess her job isn’t so boring because she told me right away to get dressed. Then she asked me all the questions again. I must have got the answers right this time because she said I could go when we were done. And she gave me a nice cup with my name on it. But what she meant was I could GO, now, and I had to leave the cup in the bathroom.



Scanner Play

I was scanning some tax paperwork (kind of boring) and got wondering what I could put on the scanner just for fun. Here’s a few of the results.

(technical note: the image files were huge so I’ve scaled them down a lot and did a little cropping. Other than that, there not “shopped” at all)

Some stuff I found around the office –




I crumpled up some plastic wrap and put it between the platen and an old family photo for a neat effect –


I had to try a CD and DVD next –

ODscanThat’s way more cool than what was on the discs in the first place.

I wanted to try something that wasn’t so flat. I have a lot of owl figurines (People are always giving me owls). Here’s one –


Another one –


These owls are made of birdseed –


I tried rolling one of the birdseed owls, tracking the scanner bar as it scanned –


It gets stranger. I had to try the same thing with my hand –

HandScan I had to try that again –


Finally, I just cupped my hand, placing fingertips and wrist against the platen –


I’ll be looking for some more ideas.  That’s my story, dammit.