Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Grant, Florida

That top photo is just a small town's sign in the area. As the sign says, they have a seafood festival every year, but I have never been. I don't really like crowds and if I want some really good seafood, there are lots of laid back seafood restaurants around here that I'd rather go to for that.

Yeah, I'm the original party pooper.

The second one is a favorite of mine, though it drives me nuts just how bad I blew the exposure. As the original is a JPEG, I couldn't try to save it from being so overexposed like I can with RAW images.

That photo more than any other had me switching to RAW mode soon after getting my digital SLR.

Merry Christmas everyone. God Bless all of you and thanks for coming to visit here this year. I appreciate it, and I appreciate all of YOU too.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Full Moon, Red Tide

I went to the beach late this evening (Sunday afternoon).

I hadn't been in a while, and have put it off because we have had a bit of red tide here lately.

There's not enough red tide to really color the water, but the wind from the ocean will have the particles in the air and as soon as I opened my car door and stood up out of the car, I started coughing.

At first I wasn't sure if it was red tide in the air or if it was the lighter fluid being used to excess by the one family there in the park that was lighting and old fashioned charcoal grill for charring some animal flesh. The smell of lighter fluid was strong in the air.

I went on down to the beach and kept coughing, so I figured the red tide was still in the area.

But the sky was so beautiful as the sun was setting that I had to stay for a little while, and although the sunset was in the "wrong" direction for photographing on the east coast of Florida, it was lovely on the beach.

As I stood and soaked up the view, waiting as the sky changed colors, some clouds began to approach the moon and I ended up taking about 100 photos of the moon alone, hoping for a few really good ones.

These are a couple from this batch today.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Old Melbourne Florida

These were taken in the old downtown section of Melbourne, Florida.

I loved the way the wall is painted in the top photo.

This is a great place to walk around, with lots of interesting shops.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

I Hope This Is Ok

A few months ago, Lovely Wife "volunteered" me to try to repair a photo for a total stranger.

There's an exchange list for people in this area. For example, if I had a working TV that I no longer wanted or needed, you can find people on this list that need one, get together with them and give them the TV.

Similarly, if you have need of a service and little or no money, or if you have money but don't have a clue who to ask about your need, you can post that on the list too.

Lovely Wife saw that someone had posted an inquiry about having an old family photo digitally repaired.

That is the one that Lovely Wife volunteered me for.

When I got the file in my email, I was bummed out. I had never tried to do this kind of repair where someone's face was involved.

I prayed about how to do it, and then started getting ideas on trying things in Photoshop Elements that I had never even thought of before.

I worked on this for about two hours, and even managed to amaze myself.

Thanks, God.

All I know about this photo, is that it was a photo of a local woman's mother. A friend of this local woman had posted the request for someone to repair the photo as a surprise for her. I never met anyone involved and have no idea who the young lady in the photo is.

It was as much a blessing for me to do this as for her to have her mother's photo repaired, I learned some neat tricks, nothing earth shaking, but the pressure and the prayer resulted in a cool transformation.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

For Jeanine

OK folks, I know I'm pathetic. I haven't been posting or visiting much lately. Sorry about that, but although there's nothing in particular that's wrong, personal issues have kept me from being the quick posting, happily commenting blogger that I was in times past.

I just hope the blues go away soon, and I thank all of you for your visits and comments.

Jeanine left a comment on one of my older posts today where I had shown and talked about a train bridge in my old home town of Monroe, Louisiana.

I looked for others that I had thought I put on Least Significant Bits or on this blog in the past to point them out to her.

I think they are out there somewhere, but I couldn't find them so I'm re-posting them both.

Forgive me if you've seen and remember these, but Jeanine, here's my two all-time favorites of the many photos I've taken of that train bridge over the Ouachita River.

These were both taken at about 3am, after working at the Johnny's on McKeen Place in Monroe, and couldn't get to sleep. (I still have insomnia a lot, even all these years later. It's just harder to deal with at 45 than it was at 20).

Actually Jeanine, as I look at these two photos, I think the top one is the old DeSiard Street bridge that swiveled in the middle. These are two different bridges. (bonus!)

I have posted photos on my other blog today if y'all want to go over and see them.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

How The Other Half Lives

These are a couple of beach homes near here that I have always loved.

There are two photos of the second one, my favorite of the two.

These would be a couple of really high-dollar homes for this area, and both are on the Atlantic Ocean.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Home Sweet Home

What I see when I get out of my car in the evening.

You can almost hear our dogs barking, having seen me from a window and waiting excitedly behind the front door.

The other one's just a pretty evening sky I though y'all might like.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

A Palm of Some Kind or Another

Outside one of the branches of the county library.

Sorry I haven't been commenting much, I've been coming by your blogs as I can, but haven't always commented.

Life is full of ups and downs and it's just tough for me to comment on everyone's blogs right now. It takes a long time to go through my list of friends over there to the right, and comment. I've been mostly lurking, looking but not commenting.

I'll try to be more sociable as time permits, but I figured it was better to visit and not comment than to not visit at all.

Friday, December 7, 2007


Sometimes you go to the beach down here, and the nearest person to you is about half a mile away.


Our Taurus was the only car in the huge parking lot at this public beach access the day I took these photos.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

The Fungus is Among Us

This stuff looks to be some sort of fungus or another, growing on a fallen palm tree in a local park. Looks like some nice, dark green moss on there too.

I've spent many hours trying to identify the plants I have photographed and put on here so that I can inform y'all of what they are. I fail dismally most of the time, so I'm giving up.

From now on, I'll try to look up plants for a few minutes but if I cannot identify them quickly, then I'll just post them anyway and say I don't know.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Completely Unrelated

I try to post at least two photos a day here. Many times they are at least a little bitty bit related. Plants. Ocean scenes.

Today's photos have absolutely nothing to do with one another except for maybe there being yellow in both of them.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Gulf Shores Again (Old Chromes #6)

Sunrise in Gulf Shores, Alabama, 1983.

The second photo is one of those that is technically horrible, hand-held in low light and therefore blurry, but it has the color and movement of the water that I remember so well.

Someone else can look at that second one and thing it stinks. Maybe so, but I was there that beautiful morning and it catches the feel of the warm sea air and how it felt for Lovely Fiance and I to be the only ones on the beach that morning.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Merry Christmakwanzahannukah!

December 1st already?!

Well then, Merry Christmas from Florida.

I despise political correctness, but I have to admit that the word Christmakwanzahannukah is funny. And even conservatives like funny stuff. Bill Maher, politically correct and definitely NOT funny. Christmakwanzahannukah, politically correct AND funny.

I couldn't figure out a clever way to fit something about the winter solstice in there for the pagans.

(No these aren't new photos, they're old. I just thought y'all might be needing some sunshine and seashore about now.)

They were taken in Indialantic, Florida, on the barrier island that runs along the Atlantic coast here.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Last Day of Hurricane Season

While nature has absolutely no obligation to obey man's calendars and semi-arbitrary dates, I can breathe a bit easier until next June 1 when the next hurricane season begins.

Then this background worry of ours (Will we get another direct hit this year like the Jeanne and Frances of 2004?) starts all over again.

Here's to sunny, warm, and worry-free fall and winter days in Florida.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Purple (Old Chromes #5)

Lovely Wife's parents always had various flower pots, half-barrels, and so forth around their home, full of flowers.

Here's one from my olden days, the early 1980s.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Moss? Lichens?

Moss? Lichens?

I have absolutely no idea, but it looked nice in the dappled sunlight on this palm tree in Erna Nixon Park in Melbourne, Florida.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Before Sunrise (Old Chromes #4)

Gulf Shores, Alabama, 1983.

My Mother In Law loved the beach. LOVED it.

After the trip I took with them in 1982, I was pretty much hooked on it myself.

When they wanted to make a quick trip to the beach one weekend in June 1983, I was again asked if I wanted to tag along.

They needed to ask? I'm there, Dude.

They rented two hotel rooms across from the beach and future Father In Law and I slept in one room and all the women-folk slept in the adjacent room.

The next morning Lovely Fiance and I got up before dawn and headed to the beach to watch the sunrise and for me to take photos.

Here's rare proof that I have occasionally been able to roll out of bed before sunrise. On days other than Christmas, that is.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Boat Hookups

Electrical and water hookups for the boats at a local marina on Crane Creek in Melbourne, Florida.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Revisiting Earlier Photographs, #3

I was able to make this photo look more to my liking.

If you ever take photos like this, looking right into the sun, and your photos come out where the sun has "bloomed," or is no longer round, like it is in this photo, remember to always stop the aperture way down. The sun will be properly round if you use a small aperture (highest aperture number possible).

It's too late with this photo, that can't be fixed in Elements, but I got it looking good to me nevertheless.

It's Sunday, and that means I also posted photos on my other blog if y'all care to go see them. Today is a batch of my old 35mm slides.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Plain Old Grass

I simply liked the warm morning sunlight on this patch of grass by the waters of Palm Bay.

Friday, November 23, 2007


Water fowl are fascinating to watch. They have to be really sneaky or they go hungry.

This is a great blue heron.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

It is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord, and to sing praises unto thy name, o Most High: to shew forth thy lovingkindness in the morning, and thy faithfulness every night...Psalm 92:1-2

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone that celebrates!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Revisiting Earlier Photographs, #2

The other day I posted and talked about using skills with Photoshop Elements that I have learned in the last year+ and trying to help early photos that I had taken with my D70s.

Here's another one that I couldn't get to a point that I was satisfied with it last year when I took it.

I like it just fine now.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007


These leaves on this tree intrigued me. The leaves are large and look to have been tattooed with some sort of tribal design like a Maori or something.

I have no idea what kind of plant or tree this is. I'm pretty good with internet searches but trying to look up plants give me a headache. If I do find something I'm looking for in the plant world, it's never easy.

What's up with all the plant sites with huge verbal descriptions and no drawings or photos? That's just criminal.

I'll just let this one be a mystery.

Monday, November 19, 2007

X Marks the Spot

A couple of palm trees in a local park. Palm trees have fairly shallow roots; I don't see how they can lean this far and still stand.

It's fairly common to see them leaning like this though.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Revisiting Earlier Photographs, #1

Last year when I first bought my D70s, Lovely Wife and I headed out to try to catch a sweet sunset.

God was merciful.

But I had no idea how unforgiving both the highlights and shadows were on digital sensors as compared to film.

Even slide film is more forgiving. With a digital sensor, highlights especially are completely lost once the sensor's photosite is "full."

And I wasn't very knowledgeable with Photoshop Elements yet, knowing just the basics.

The ensuing thousands of photos that I've adjusted, repaired, and manipulated in Elements in the past year+ have given me the confidence to return to some of these early digital slr photos of mine and take another shot at making them better.

Thankfully I started shooting RAW after screwing up the exposure of a whole bunch of photographs. That and the lessons learned in improving photos using Elements have allowed me to finally take a decent photo and make it into one I like a whole lot better now.

Like this sunset. The original had the sky around the sun totally blown out.

The main part of the "fix," after working with it in RAW format first, was using a neutral density gradient filter from the mid-point of the photo, skyward.

I posted my usual Sunday picture post over on my other blog if y'all want to go over there and see them.

Have a great Sunday!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Don't Know What This One Is Either

Yet another plant that I have no idea what it's name is, and I looked until I gave up.

Stupid Google.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Watch Your Step

In most of the parks we've been to here in Florida, they build boardwalks instead of laying concrete walkways.

If you donate money to the parks, you can have your's or a loved one's name engraved on the boards used to make the boardwalks.

You can see some names written in the boards here right before the steps onto this pier in Grant, Florida.

I thought this photo looked better in black and white than the original color. The late evening sun still has the same warmth in this one as it did in color.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

It's the Small Things

In my first foray into college in the early 1980s I took some black and white photography courses.

One of the things that our instructor taught us to look for in the viewfinder was one type of item mimicking another type. That is something that has become almost unconscious in my photography in the ensuing 25 years.

I look at a photo like this, without a strong main subject, for a while and ask myself what it was about the scene that caused me to press the shutter button.

Then it finally occurred to me that the shapes of the scruffy looking few trees on this little island in the Indian River Lagoon are mimicking the way the first row of clouds in the distance are reaching for the sky.

It's like trying to remember someone's name and finally coming up with it when that happens.

Look for repeating patterns and for different objects that even vaguely mimic others in the scene. Your photos will be stronger.

I'm not trying to claim this is a great photo. It's not by a long shot. But the photo has a strength beyond what it would have had the tree tops not looked like the clouds back there.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Robinson Crusoe Autograph Model Glass Bottle (Old Chrome #3)

From the same trip to Panama City Beach, Florida as yesterday's photo of Lovely Wife.

This bottle had washed up on the beach, having been in the Gulf of Mexico long enough to grow some barnacles.

I didn't notice it at first, but my future Father In Law did and when I saw him taking photos of something, so I went over to investigate.

It's funny how certain memories stick in your mind so clearly. I distinctly remember laying down on the sand to take this. Probably because I was being so careful to keep the water that was lapping around me from soaking my camera.

There were no messages inside the bottle. I reckon the world is mapped out and populated enough that bottles traveling on the ocean's currents don't carry messages of maroonings like they once did.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Oh, To Be Young Again (Old Chrome #2)

Lovely Wife and I met in 1981.

Her family pretty much adopted me as one of them soon after. In the summer of 1982 they went on vacation to Panama City Beach, Florida up in the Florida panhandle, and they invited me to go along. (We weren't even engaged yet when this was taken.)

From the perspective of Louisiana, where we all lived at the time, it was "down" to Florida.

I had started shooting slide film almost exclusively in early 1982 and this is one of my all-time favorite shots of Lovely Wife from this trip, taken on Kodachrome 64.

A plain old "normal" lens is hard to beat.

I love Kodachrome enough that I have come up with a process that allows me to approximate it's "thicker", contrasty look with digital photos. It works great with some photos, but not all.

We had our 23rd wedding anniversary this past August.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Hard to Explain

I simply tried to photograph the grass-like growth on this rock in the water of the Indian River Lagoon.

I really like this photo but I'm not exactly sure why. I think that it's the reflections of the sunlight on the slightly blurry, moving water that seals the deal for me.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Palm Tree Details

I really liked all of the subtle colors and details on the pieces of this palm tree in a local park.

I have posted photos of Space View Park in Titusville, Florida both today and yesterday. There's a memorial to the Mercury Seven Astronauts there.

There's also one for the Gemini Astronauts, but it got dark before I could make it over to that part of the park.

Saturday, November 10, 2007


You just never know what will make a neat photograph.

Even litter has possibilities.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Jacaranda Blossoms

I had to look this one up, but at least I was able to find and identify it.

It sure was a pretty tree.

Though it's blurry, if you look to the left of the blooms you can see a piece of fruit growing.

I also posted a couple of recent photos on my other blog today.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

In Our Yard

Palm tree fruit/seeds on one of the palm trees in our front yard.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Call Me Mellow Yellow

I love the various shades and mixtures of green and yellow on this single, large tree. It looked to be some type of mimosa, but I'm not sure.

It's a plant, and I know the names of very few plants.

On my other blog, Least Significant Bits, I wrote a post about a recent photography excursion I made, and some of the resulting photos. Go check it out.

I had a 5,000 word day yesterday to catch up for the couple of days I missed on my bucket of chum gloriously wonderful novel for NaNoWriMo.

wordcount widgets