Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Frankie, it is!

Frankie just seems to fit and that was true for many who voted!  So Frankie it is, at least for us humans!  Caught a couple of shots of him outside - he loves exploring the deck and everything on and under it.  He bounces when he walks - that cute kitten bounce that we forget about until we see another kitten.  Everything is open to investigation and chasing!  What a lesson in spontaneity.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Moonrise over Olympus

I've been reading and watching video's about the new content-aware fill feature of Photoshop CS5, and decided to try it out on this picture of the moon rising over Mount Olympus taken from our backyard.  The space between me and the moon/mountain is filled with power lines, so, I thought I would see how good the feature is.
Well, I'm sold!  It is absolutely incredible - not a bit of line remains and you cannot tell that something was done to it without looking at a before and after.  One more reason to never believe that the photo you see reflects the original.  But what a tool!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Carmen came to play!

Carmen came to play today and play we did - seemed like forever but the deck was perfect for her and Murphy and the kitty played along also!  She is so much fun to be with - and so verbal!

Frankie or Fuzzy?

Still working with the little one's name, Diana calls him 'Baby' a lot, but she says that he won't always be a baby so we can't call him that!  He's growing up - has a great relationship with both Leo (older cat) and Murphy.  One thing that Murphy will not let him do is get into Murphy's food - Murph will bare his teeth and lunge at him if the kitty seems to be about to steal his food, which the kitty can't eat 'cause it is too big!  Even with a bone - Murph is very protective of his food.
Anyway here's some pics for your enjoyment:

Someone really knows how to relax, I'd say!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Last Light!

Sitting in the back yard with Murphy watching the sun go down and the light and shadows across the yard.  It is a time of magic (guess that's why it's called the 'magic hour') and even the birds quiet down a little in respect.
Still experimenting with the 50mm f/1.8 and loving it.  No "hero" shots yet but some nice ones that are keepers.  The one below I call "Last Light".

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

And more kitty!!

Almost time for a new subject, but here's a couple to pass the time away and yes, he really is that cute and cuddly (until he jumps on your face in the middle of the night!!!).

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

More Kitty photos!

Popular demand says more kitty photos - but he won't sit still long enough.  But here's a few to whet your appetite as I work at getting more.  Murphy pretty much ignores him now, and Leo and he play a little bit.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Bird day

Murph and I went out to the wildlife refuge today - no hawks and only a few kestrels.  But, as usual, there are all these other birds around. Plus some man-made adornments with goose feathers.  Murphy enjoyed a lot of water time (more like swamp time) but it was warm for a black dog and he dunked himself a couple of times in the water.  Fortunately I have a cover for his seat!

Watchful parents - the kids are pretty well grown.

Looks like he got into a fight and lost some head feathers!!

The swallow is stunning - I sharpened him up a bit but the color is as it came from the camera (which doesn't mean it is correct, but I like it).

Sunday, June 13, 2010

I never imagined!

Lately I have been thinking about my 50mm f1.8 lens - initially to use inside to take pics of Blue (Frank's new name - we'll see how it goes).  I saw a new iris in bloom and thought it would make a nice picture using the 1.8 and narrow depth of field.  Little did I know what would happen - and here are some results!  One thing led to another and pretty soon all the beauty was being pursued. 
Since I do not trust the LCD on the camera back to make delete judgements, I did not see the effects until I downloaded these onto my iMac. (Despite the cost, looking at beauty on a 27" screen is out of this world!)

This is the iris that started it all.  Last year they did not bloom - but this year they are back in incredible splendor and glory!

Then on to the roses, to see how the color would act and I really do like it.

For me, this is the kind of shot that I love - light and dark, form, a bit of color and a sparse scene.

The clematis below is almost like a sailing ship - floating in an ocean of color resting on it's petals!

And then, just for grins and giggles, the European honeysuckle appears as some things out of the blur!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Return of the Raptor!

Diana and I were just talking yesterday that we had not seen any raptors in our backyard lately, desptie the plethora of small birds for food.  This afternoon I was sitting on the back deck with the little kitten on my tummy, and wondered why this bird did not look like a normal bluejay by the jay feeder - then realized that it was a hawk.  I believe a Cooper's hawk from my research, but have sent photos to Hawkwatch to get confirmation.
I snuck into the kitchen to get my camera and then back to get these photos - he/she was not much afraid and flew around a couple of places before leaving for good.

Friday, June 11, 2010

More Smitten Kitten photos

I've had a few requests for more photo's - so here we go!  It has been overcast and dark so I'm using a flash a lot - not what I like but what is needed. As you'll see, Murph and kitty are doing well together (they rubbed noses tonight) and Leo wants to teach little one a lesson or two.
Murph got whacked by Sam, another cat that we had, so he's a bit careful about exposing his nose to the kitten.  Also, when Murph yawns, the kitten could fit inside his mouth!!


As one of the bishops that Diana has had, once said - there are no unmixed blessings!  While Diana wanted a kitty that would snuggle with her, she also got a kitty that will attack her face in the middle of the night!  As well as a work partner that kind of takes over - climbs up her pants and wreaks his havoc on her computer and her work attitude!

But when he turns to you and lays in your hand purring with his eyes shut and his paws over his eyes - you are now smitten!!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Smitten by a kitten!

OK - Diana has wanted an orange cat ever since our Felina died!  So we got a picture a couple of days ago of an orange six week kitten!!  Wow!  Caught our hearts right away, and despite the fact that he is a male, (Felina was a female) we went to visit him and he is a snuggler!!!!  Loves to be held and loves people and is very calm (first 5 hours, you recognize that he could change!).
Anyway, we are smitten with him, and it looks like our life, at least for a while, is about this guy!  Here's a couple of pics for consumption!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

The mystery

I received a book the other day from an old subscription that I had to Heron Dance ( entitled "Art is about the Mystery" by Rod MacIver, the founder of Heron Dance.  Rod includes his journal entries and quotes as he explores the mystery of art and the artist - why they do what they do, how it happens, etc. etc..
Here are a couple of quotes from the book that struck me quite profoundly:

Mary Oliver; poet:
For poems are not words, after all, but fires for the cold, ropes let down to the lost, something as necessary as bread in the pockets of the hungry!

We may worry about death but what hurts the soul most is to live without tasting the water of its own essence!

Live deeply and passionately - step beyond the boundaries that you hold for yourself!