Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Rainy Sunday

Sunday was a wet and rainy day here in Cortland. At lunch we all went out to eat but first the kids insisted on playing in the rain. Of course, I had to grab the ol' camera and take some shots. One lesson I learned with these images is that a yellow umbrella and a yellow coat is going to make the subject look jaundiced (hence the need to play around with the processsing) and also you need a faster shutter speed than you might think given how cloudy it really is. This is the only one that I felt was sharp enough.

Still a fun few minutes and an image that I think captures Duncan pretty well. Always looking ahead and the next thing.

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Monday, September 29, 2008

War of the Worlds

Sitting in the parking lot while one of the kids slept and everyone else was shopping, I noticed the large lights on in the middle of the day. I was reminded of a few things: 1) we waste a lot of energy for no reason at all, 2) during the night, I hate light pollution from these huge parking lot lights, 3) these light posts look like something from a sci-fi movie.

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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Birds on the Potomac

When I was back in the DC area last week, I got to wander down to my favorite spot on the Potomac in Alexandria. These birds were out on the old pilings at the the mouth of Oronoco Bay. Another photographer was out shooting them from his kayak. Soon after this, he floated a bit too close, and they took off.

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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Summer's End

I would just like to take a moment and say thank you to Summer 2008. We had some really great days. A bit hot at times but not too bad. Summer 2008 was with us through a lot of changes for our family, but we all got through it. So goodbye Summer 2008 and thank you. Now welcome Fall 2008, you've got some big shoes to fill.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

From Our Window

One of the great features we love about the new house is that there are a number of leaded glass windows that provide a wonderful character to the house. This window in the front living room faces the west and so gets some great sun in the afternoon. The kids love counting all the rainbows the window makes on the floor, the walls and the ceiling. They track them through the afternoon as they move in unison with the Sun. Simple pleasures and quick science lessons.

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Monday, September 22, 2008

Fall is Coming

We all went for a nature hike around Sapsucker Woods on Sunday. Sapsucker is the location of the Cornell Ornithology Lab (scientists who study birds). This was a great little find for us (ok, we are new to the area). The kids had a great time. We saw a tree snake, frogs, deer, turtles on a log, woodpeckers, rabbits, and lots of different kinds of birds. It was nice to get out and stretch out legs. We could also tell during our walk that fall was on its way. Most of the forest was still in summer green but some trees were turning, the ferns were dying, and the goldenrod was in the final splashes of color. And the fact that we are getting 30-40 degree nights now helps.

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Saturday, September 20, 2008

No Admittance

I came across this old abandoned factory in McGraw, NY, a small town to the east of Cortland. I was drawn to the sign left over from many years ago. I also really like the flower in the lower right. Says something about death and re-birth to me.

Sorry about the lack of posts this past week. I was away attending a conference in Baltimore. I'll see if any of my images from the week turned out.

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Sunday, September 14, 2008

Green Lakes

There is a very cool state park outside of Syracuse called Green Lakes State Park. There they have some of the only green lakes in the whole world. The water in this lake is super clear and the water in the bottom and top halves of the lake do not mix for a number of unique reasons. It is very deep and even has some freshwater reefs. This image is an HDR image taken with a polarizer to remove the glare. I'll have to get back up there again soon.

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Saturday, September 13, 2008


The Blue Frog Coffeehouse is one of our new favorite hangouts in town. It is right at the end of the block at the bottom of the hill. They have toys for the kids to play with and of course plenty to eat and drink. No, we have not gotten the kids addicted to coffee but maybe just a bit to the fruit shakes and smoothies.

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Friday, September 12, 2008

Changes to the Land

I call this "Changes to the Land". Coming from Northern VA I constantly saw farm land disappearing into the suburban sprawl. I would typically need to drive for an hour to get out of the sprawl and into the countryside. I am just starting to get used to the idea that from my new house in downtown Cortland, I can see active farms and can be in the country in about 5 minutes.

I was playing around with printing options in Lightroom this weekend. I tried a style that Matt K suggested in his LR blog. I thought it worked well for putting together related items.

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Thursday, September 11, 2008

Culpeper Barn

Ok, I am just going to do it and stay with the farming theme this week, why not? This barn is outside of Culpeper, VA along the main north-south Amtrak tracks. I used to pass it on the way to my parents house. Another high dynamic range image.

This is the last image in order to set up for tomorrow's composite I have mentioned a few times.

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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

John Deere and Flies

On the same trip as the previous barn images, I came across this John Deere tractor in a shed. What really makes this for me are the flies. To me they seem to provide a certain amount of "smell-o-vision." Since there are flies and it is a farm, there must be manure, which means it is smelly. Anyway, this was another high dynamic range image. I think in the future, I will play around with burned down the background on this. I like the effect in the tractor but not so much for the rest of the barn.

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Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Frying Pan Park Barn #2

I liked the pop of the red in the barn in the last version of this. But in this I am digging the more subtle colors. It has more the feeling of something abandoned and left behind.

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Monday, September 8, 2008

Frying Pan Park Barn #1

One day earlier this summer, we took the kids to Frying Pan Park in Herndon. Great place, esp. when there is no one else around. The clouds started to roll in as we were wandering around. I snagged this image of one of the barns before we had to dash to the car. I like the sense of mystery with the open vent and the slight break in the clouds that let in a bit of light just above. Tomorrow, I'll post another version of this, which I also really like.

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Sunday, September 7, 2008

Red Hill Offices

Before leaving NoVA, I did some wandering around the new construction along the Dulles Corridor. I came across a lot where they were digging out to make room for some new construction. I liked the juxtaposition of the new office building with the mound of deep red dirt. NoVA was certainly the land of commercial construction. Here in Cortland, they just opened a new Tim Horton's, which was the first commerical construction in the city for 2 years. Weird.

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Saturday, September 6, 2008


Again from the Syracuse Meetup Group photowalk of SU Hill back in August. This is the atrium of an office building near the Syracuse University campus. I was really drawn to all the lines and how the seemed to work together in harmony. Part of me wishes for some clouds but on the other day I do like the reflection of the lines and rectangles in the windows.

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Friday, September 5, 2008

Recycle the World

While on a photowalk with the Syracuse Meetup Group, I came across these bundles of cardboard set out to be recycled. I really liked all the various colors from the different materials, and the brown cardboard seemed to have a bit of a glow in the late day light. This is again an HDR image (I am shooting lots of these right now). This fit togther well in a composite I am working on, which I will show down the road.

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Thursday, September 4, 2008

First Day of School

Today is the first day of school for Rowan and Duncan. They are starting at St. Mary's Parochial School here in Cortland (only about 6 blocks from our house). Rowan is starting kindergarten, and Duncan is in their Pre-K4 program. Today's image is a quick snap on the way out the door. Every exciting for everyone.

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Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Water Fountain Fun

Ok, I was noticing a trend toward people-less images since I started the blog back up, so here is a fun set I have been working on. These are my kids having fun at the water fountain at Skaneateles. After reviewing the pics I noticed these two images show similar expressions, so I flipped the one on the left (Rowan's) around and put it together with Duncan's. Tried to line things up as best I could. I then printed this as a single image.

Fond memories of a nice day exploring the area. Skaneateles is a neat town on a Finger Lake. At Christmas time people dress up like Dickens characters. Photo-sense is tingling.

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(Where was this taken?)

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Double Bend

What caught my eye initially was the shadow of the light post, but then when I looked closer, I noticed that the sign had a similar shape going in the opposite direction. Looking further the five small bolts in the upper left added even more interest for me. And of course, I could not ignore all the crosses from the bricks and the main wall dividers. This is also an HDR image because the shadow was very subtle. I think it helped bring it out nicely. This was taken on a photowalk with the Syracuse Meetup Group.

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Monday, September 1, 2008

J.J. Newberry Building

After attending my first gallery show opening in town, I was wondering around downtown. What really caught my eye was the fact that I could see the shadows from the D.W. Yager Law Offices on the wall behind. This is another HDR image and has been processed a bit in Lightroom.

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