Yep, He Got Us!

Over the past few weeks I have been culling my photo database.  Starting with my the first images in 2004 when I switched from analog, I’ve been looking at every single one.  I’m up to 2011 so far.

As I look at each one, I’m looking for:

– Technical quality – is it in focus, is it exposed properly, etc.

– Duplication – Is it a duplicate?  If so, is it the best of the rest?

– Uniqueness – Is the image of an event that can’t be repeated?  Will I have the chance to observe it again?

– Sentiment – Does the image have some sort of sentimental value?  Oftentimes, this and the previous step are the same.

It can be quite tedious.

I was never shy with the shutter button when I was shooting film.  That hasn’t changed since I moved to digital, but I know that I do shoot more.  Rarely did I have a 4-roll day with film, but I can easily shoot 200 images in a session.

But they all aren’t keepers.

I haven’t kept track exactly on numbers, but I know that I’ve regained ~120GB of hard drive space.  That’s at a time when I was needing to get at least one new hard drive for storage.  In this case, it’s almost “free money”.

And I’ve already started using the process for the new shoots.  During the session that included last Friday’s image, I shot 58 frames.  I applied those same four steps to the session and now have 10 frames to pick from.

Especially when it comes to landscape, the “duplicate” step is the deciding factor.  I can click back and forth between two images dozens of times to see the minor differences.  Sometimes it’s a matter of flipping the coin.


 

Anyway, what in the world does all of this have to do with the title?

Bear with me.  It does.

I wanted to post a slightly different angle of Mount McLoughlin, one from a real winter.  The last one we’ve had in this area was two years ago.  That’s when the mountain lakes froze hard enough that folks could go out and fish, ski, snowmobile, etc.

So I jumped forward to 2013 and went for images of Mount McLoughlin, viewed from the frozen surface of Lake of the Woods and worked one to post here.  Then I realized that today would be the seventh anniversary of Skinny’s Gotcha Day.  Although in reality, it’s our Gotcha Day.

For those of you not familiar, when adopting a greyhound there is a house visit.  The visit is to make sure that the potential adopters have a suitable house and enclosed yard, plus watch the interaction with the greyhounds, the adopters and their families, both human and animal.  For such a home visit, a few greyhounds are brought along.  They are happy, social animals.

We had our eye on a specific greyhound that we had met a couple of times.  The adoption volunteers brought him, along with a couple of other greyhounds, including Skinny.  Skinny wasn’t on the list to be adopted.  Instead he was being reintroduced to the home-visit process and new people after he had been returned to the adoption agency.  He didn’t mesh well with his previous adopted family and had, as we learned, a “pupitude”.

Full on attitude.

So the group enters the house.  The grey that we had our eye on and the others shyly enter and sniff around, staying close to the volunteers.  Not Skinny.  He immediately explores the whole house, then flops down in the middle of the living room floor.

He announced he was home.

And he was.

He never lost that pupitude.

Never, not even at the end.

He still makes us smile.

Thanks for picking us, Skinny!

 

Solo

Summer is winding down here.  The days are getting shorter and it’s already getting cooler.

We are just three short weeks away from our average first frost.

And in just a few short months, this tree will be under several feet of snow.  By winter’s end, this area averages over 20 feet (7 meters) of the white stuff.

I can’t wait to get up there and see it.

Crater Lake Solo

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Coats

It’s the beginning of a long weekend, finishing with Christmas and Boxing Day.

Perhaps a day of work before starting another long weekend.

We’ll decide later when the end of that weekend will be.

So it’s time to grab the coats and get out there.

Coats

Augustiner Brauhaus, Innsbruck, Austria.

Enjoy your holidays, whichever ones you choose to observe.

Bellagio Shoot

Yes, I’ve been absent the past week.  Traipsing through the Italian Alps on skis, working with some comrades from around the world, learning how to assess snow pack and forecast avalanche threats.

Great fun!

Perhaps I’ll post a pic or two later, but I’ve still got to dig back a few weeks.

A shot where I was caught in the act.

Bellagio Bill
Bellagio Bill

Sneaky Goddess.

Kunst

The German word for “art”.

Well, you can be the judge.

But the title comes courtesy of three school-aged girls who were walking by as I framed and took this shot.

“Das Haus ist Kunst”!

“The house is art”!

Followed by giggles.

I think they were right.

Kunst

For me, the most interesting detail is the shadow.

In our part of Germany, between November and early March, we’re very happy to see the sun.

Very happy.

As it can be grey for weeks on end.

But it’s not that.  Look at that angle.

This picture was taken at 11:21am.  Almost noon.  Facing west.

When the sun was just 19.6 degrees above the southern horizon.

In another month, at the Winter Solstice, it will bottom out at just 16.0 degrees above the horizon.

That makes for long shadows and beautiful light all day long.

As long as we can see the sun.

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And if you’re wondering where I’m getting the exact details on the sun, browse over to The Photographer’s Ephemeris, a nice application for desktop and portable use.

Using it, I now know that had I stood in the exact same place for another 5 hours and 13 minutes, the sun would have set about 3 degrees to the right of the furthest right roof peak.

Handy info.

Stunning Tree

Having studied and worked weather for the past 25+ years, I am watching Sandy approach the east coast of the United States with anticipation and trepidation.

Anticipation because any severe weather is always fascinating to those in my line of work.

Trepidation because Goddess and I have many, many friends in the path, already suffering the effects.  We worry about them.

Here in Germany, the weather is always much more benign.  But Germany’s weather is Germany’s weather.

We’ve run a bit cooler than normal this autumn, with a hard freeze this morning.

My morning bicycle commute ended up being -6C (23F).  Plenty chilly, but just fine with the right gear.

Because there’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing.

Well, except for a tornado.  No clothing will help that.

So I thought back to the autumn shots that I’ve been able to take the past few weeks.  And how nice it is here.

The colors are gorgeous, but it’s not always about the colors.

Sometimes it’s about the lines, the tones, the textures.

Don’t get me wrong, the colors were gorgeous in this image.  A view that Goddess pointed out to me, literally over our heads, but I was too focused on looking forward.

And that meant I was missing a lot.

Stunning Tree

Sure, if you’d like, picture the tree a bright yellow and the sky a deep blue.  Because that’s what it was.

But still not as beautiful as all of the lines and shapes and swirls that make this image whole.