Saturday, June 30, 2007

Heading for Pompano Beach

Several mornings ago, I had my lunch box and the things I was carrying to work gathered and I put them by the door front door of our home.

I heard what sounded like a really loud, low-flying propeller driven airplane.

I stepped outside the front door and locked it, and I noticed that the sound of the airplane hadn't changed. It was as if the plane was hovering above our house, but I could tell it wasn't a helicopter motor.

I took my stuff out and set them in the back seat of the Camry and looked up, and there was the Goodyear Blimp slowly passing right over our house.

I unlocked the house and grabbed my camera and went out and walked down my street about 50m to be able to at least see a little of the side of the blimp, because when I said it was flying over the house, I couldn't tell for sure it was the Goodyear Blimp because I was looking straight up at the belly of it.

The colors were correct, and it hangars in Pompano Beach, Florida, down the coast from us so I figured it was a reasonable guess, and when I finally got far enough to the side to see the word Goodyear, I snapped a few shots.

I liked that bottom one with the bird flying there in the lower left corner. It has a kind of David and Goliath look to it.

Did anyone else read that kid's book when they were little, Are You My Mother by P.D. Eastman? That bottom shot reminded me of that, it was a favorite of mine when I was little.

At any rate, I was really surprised at just how loud this thing is. But then again, it was flying pretty low.

Friday, June 29, 2007

The Redneck Riviera

These pics may or may not impress you, but they are from a trip I took with my (then) Lovely Fiance's family to Gulf Shores, Alabama. That was a wonderful trip and these photos bring back strong emotions for me.

Lovely Fiance has been Lovely Wife now for almost 23 years, and from the moment I met her parents and sister, I was just part of the family, including vacations.

Every man should be so blessed.

The panhandle of Florida and this tip of Alabama where these slides were shot is called the "Redneck Riviera" because it's an incredibly beautiful area where most tourists are plain old folks from The South, or the southeastern U.S.

These were taken in 1983, the top one soon after the sunrise, and the bottom one just before sunrise one morning.

Taken with my old buddy, my Canon AE-1 on Kodachrome 64.

Thursday, June 28, 2007


Top: Sea grape leaves.

Bottom: Palm fronds that the wind blew into an interlacing pattern.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007


These were taken at a public park alond the Indian River Lagoon in Sebastian, Florida.

I found out quickly, that if you come to this park, the squirrels expect to be fed. I was chastised by disgusted squirrels who came close to me, looked cute, but I had nothing to feed them with for their efforts. They then climbed up in trees and chirped angrily at me.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007


Sorry folks. I'm too sleepy to provide life changing commentary on these shots, but I'll try, so:

The top photo is a sailboat at dock,


the bottom shot is the sun peeking through a hole in the clouds above a shopping center.


Your lives will never be the same.

No! No thanks needed. It's my gift to you.

Monday, June 25, 2007

I Need Your Help; and Indian River Lagoon Photos

These were taken from Ballard Park in Melbourne, Florida. They're both looking out from the park into the Indian River Lagoon. I've always wanted to ride on a sailboat, but as of yet, have never done so. I'll get out there one day.

I need to ask you folks a question. I've been approached by email about some of my photographs of the Indian River Lagoon. From what I can tell, they're resposible for advertising locally for a company that does business on the Lagoon. It's not a detailed query, just asking if I was interested in selling some of my photos they've seen, and asking my price.

I've never sold a photo. I've never tried to sell a photo.

Here's my question. If you were approached like this, how much would you "charge" for the use of a photo or set of photos. I have ABSOLUTELY no idea what folks like me should charge for this. I will assume they will use the photo or two that they've seen and liked, so I probably won't be going out specifically on a shoot for them. They simply want to use some of the photos that I've put on the internet that seems to fit what they want for advertising. What should I charge? What would you charge? What have you charged?

If you have a response for me, please email me at I would appreciate your help in determining a reasonable rate for the use of my photos, I'm guessing on a brochure or internet web site advertising these folks operations.

Again, please email me if you can help at:

Thank you all in advance.

Sunday, June 24, 2007


Pics of a couple of birds taken on Lake Toho in Kissimmee, Florida.

The first one is a snowy egret (I'm fairly sure) out in the grass. There had been a fair bit of rain and the water levels of all the lakes had gone up. Probably providing better hunting for fellas like this one. I just liked the look of this one bird out there all by his lonesome.

I'm going to prove my ignorance of the natural world here (yet again) by saying I think this is a pigeon. He walked goofy like pigeons do, and he's shaped like a pigeon, but I sure as heck have never seen a pigeon colored colored up as fancy as this guy is. His red eyeballs were pretty creepy too.

Have a great Sunday friends!

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Our Very Own Lighthouse

Lovely Wife loves her some lighthouses. We have all kinds of pictures and things with them.

This photo is of a 2ft tall lighthouse she put out beside our pool. It soaks up the sunlight, recharging a small battery by day, and then when the sun goes down a sensor turns on the light in the top.

It's not very bright, but it's pretty to look out there and see it in the evening and night.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Black And White #8

The originals of these, of course, are in color. I liked them, but they weren't very exciting. I liked the high contrast though.

Now that I'm getting a bit better with my black and white conversions, I remembered these and went back and tried to work a little magic on them.

Well, I like 'em.

They are some sort of palmetto or something palm-like that are growing in front of my favorite Brevard County Public Library branch. Someone cut off all of the points ath the ends, and went a little farther inward on them and cut these fronds into circles.

I love the hazy focus look that Anna of Anna's Photo of the Day, and John of My Viewfinder do with their photos, but I couldn't get a hazy focus on these that I liked. I was wondering why, and it hit me that the good Orton process looking photos are the ones that have some humanity in them, or are a beautiful scene to begin with. I'm thinking there's nothing inherently beautiful or human about these trimmed palmettos. Maybe that's why the Orton process looks goofy to me on them.

(Warning, Rant ahead: I thought these looked kinda nifty, though I suspect they're really trimmed this way to keep some knucklehead from poking themselves and either complaining or suing the library. You can't underestimate folk's stupidity and vindictiveness these days. End of rant.)

Cool Used Book Store, Part 1

For book lovers, a place like this needs no explanation. Lovely Wife and I enjoy looking through this place.

I will, however, point out the jumble of books in the third photograph. See the chair there on the right? That's where the owner/cashier sits. If you walk into a book store, and are immediately met with such a massive pile of books right beside and behind the front counter and cash register, can you imagine what the rest of the store is like?

It's like finding treasure.

This is in the old downtown section of Melbourne, Florida.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

By The Pool

I took these about five years ago, before we even had our Sony digital camera. These were taken on Fuji 100 print film.

The top photo is a 3ft rubber alligator that belonged to Number Two Daughter. In the mid 90s when I was in college (again) at Louisiana Tech, we were able to take a few days and go on vacation to Panama City Beach, Florida. This was the "big" souvenir that Number Two Daughter chose. We went to every tourist shop in the whole area and she ended up with this. She's like me in that regard. She agonizes and stews and does trade studies and totally stresses before buying anything. She and her friends would play with it in our pool.

The bottom one was also taken beside the pool, you can see decorative tile laid into the surface there, and the bright colors on the left are a stack of air mattresses for relaxing in the pool.

These were taken with a Nikon N90s and a sweet, 50mm f1.4 lens I had at the time.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Train Bridge, Monroe, Louisiana 1983 and 2006

This first one is of what was left of a wooden buildings built into the middle of an old train bridge across the Ouachita River, between Monroe and West Monroe, Louisiana. This is another photo from the same roll of Tri-X black and white film I posted two photos from on yesterday. That ratty looking old building still hanging on there in the middle of the bridge fascinated me. I have no idea what the purpose of such a structure was, above a river and with trains passing beneath it.

When I was last in Monroe, Louisiana, in December 2006, I took more pics of a train going across this same old bridge. The bridge had looked old in 1983, so I was surprised to see trains still crossing it. There's no hint anymore of the old building in the top photo, although this bottom photo shows that same section of the train bridge, only from the other side of it.

Monday, June 18, 2007


This past Saturday, I posted a couple of sunset photos that I took the previous evening.

These two photos were from the same batch that I took on Friday at sunset.

The top one is the golden colors of the sun reflecting on the side of a high dollar set of condominiums in Melbourne, Florida. The water is part of the Indian River Lagoon, our section of the intracoastal waterway.

The bottom photo is simply looking east toward the barrier island across the Indian River Lagoon. Beyond the island across the top of the photo is the Atlantic Ocean.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Sunday, Father's Day

In the U.S. we're celebrating Father's Day today.

I thought I'd put up a couple of pics of my father and father in law that I've taken.

This first photo is one of my Dad that I took in around 1983. He passed away in 1994. I miss him and am thinking about him today.

This photo is one that I took of my Father In Law, also around 1984. He was a good photographer and had enjoyed the hobby since his youth. This is him on the beach at Gulf Shores, Alabama adjusting his camera.

Also, today I wrote and posted pictures on my other blog about all the men in my life. I've been blessed to have grown up surrounded by good, hard-working, salt of the earth type men.

I'm proud to have known them.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Friday's Sunset At Both Ends Of My Nikon's Zoom

Yesterday evening, Lovely Wife and I picked up the Ford Taurus we own from having the air conditioner repaired. Last year, there was an incident of I-95 on the way to work one morning that resulted in a trailer's aluminum fender skewering the front of the car at 70mph.

We knew it would cost a good bit to have fixed, so I've mostly just driven it to and from work, sans air conditioning.

To celebrate the Taurus's ice cold air, we went for a drive to a park we like that is on the Indian River Lagoon.

As the sun went down, I took these two photos at either end of the zoom range of my 18-200mm Nikon zoom. I ABSOLUTELY LOVE, LOVE, LOVE THIS LENS!

I even remembered to stop down to a tiny f-stop to prevent the sun from blooming. It's nice and round like it should be.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Black And White #7

These are a couple of scans of black and white film from a photography course I took in college in the early eighties.

Lovley Wife (Lovely Fiance back then) went along with me as I scurried around Monroe and West Monroe, Louisiana looking for things to photograph.

This first photo was taken in West Monroe on the banks of the Ouachita River. There was this little house or building, that was all decrepit and overgrown. Old buildings such as this are always intriguing to me. It was once a new house or business or something that I'm sure the original owner was excited about and proud of. Click on it to enlarge and tell me what you see in the photo, OK?

This is a wider shot of the same building with the Ouachita River and a bridge in the background, from the same roll of film. (Tri-X)

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Rockwood, Tennessee

These are a couple of my 35mm slides from the old days.

The upper photo is of my Father in Law raking and burning leaves at his mother's house in Rockwood, Tennessee. It's in east Tennessee between Chattanooga and Knoxville. Her house is a pretty little house on a hill. Of course, more often than not, you're put to work when you go there.

The bottom one is of anntenae on top of a mountain overlooking Rockwood. There's a small park and also a fire tower up there and is a wonderful place to go see the sunrise. This is therefore another rare bit of proof that I've gotten up and out before sunrise.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Hastily Gathered Photos Post

Woops. I ususally figure out the day before which photos I'd like to post. Looks like I was slacking in that department on yesterday evening. Oh well, here goes.

These were taken at Sebastian Inlet State Park, Florida.

The top one is a nice, large jetty sticking out in to the Atlantic on the north side of the inlet to help keep it clear.

The bottom one is pretty self explanatory. A beautiful day AND waves big enough to surf on, if just barely.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Black And White #6

These two photographs were also taken when we were sitting on the Melbourne Causeway and waiting on the Space Shuttle Atlantis to launch.

This family was enjoying some leisurely fishing, and their hard shadows in the intense sun begged to be a black and white photo.

I added the second one to show you how intense the sun was last Friday. The way it overpowers this photo was just how it felt to try to see the shuttle launch which happened about 90 degrees to the right. Most everyone had a hand up to block the light from the left. Sunglasses only helped marginally.

It was a beautiful day and a spectacular launch despite the sun's trying to upstage the shuttle.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Magical Sky

Friday evening after leaving the Shuttle launch, Lovely Wife and I went to Barnes And Noble and looked around. We bought a few books (and Lovely Wife a Starbucks coffee) and then headed out into the parking lot to get our car and go home.

This was what the sky above looked like. And since I still had my camera with me, I steadied it with my arms braced on top of the car and took a few shots.

Nikon's vibration reduction feature helped out quite a bit too, because most of these were shot between 1/10 and 1/30 of a second.

The sun had been set for a while, but these clouds were high enough to still catch the light of the sun way out of our view. We stood and watched until the sun set for the clouds too. It was beautiful and as interesting as watching the Shuttle lift off.

We got a two-fer Friday evening!

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Shots On Sunday

I don't drink al-kee-hol, so I'll give y'all a different kind of shots.

Here's a couple more from the Space Shuttle Atlantis liftoff this past Friday evening.

This first shot was the plume of smoke from all the lifting engines to get the shuttle into orbit, taken after Atlantis was out of sight.

As I worked on the above photo, I realized there was a speck on the lower left side of it, so I enlarged to see if it was a plane. It was a sea gull. Cool. This is an enlarged section of the above photo.

In this final shot, I widened the zoom to 18mm (27mm in 35mm film thinking), and when you enlarge it, look in the center of the photograph, low in the sky above the island, you can see the light of Atlantis's engines.

Have a great Sunday, folks.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Shuttle Atlantis Takes Off Friday Evening

At about 7pm, Lovely Wife and I left the house to try to go to the Melbourne Causeway to watch the Space Shuttle lift off. Hopefully.

I had my trusty camera with me:
This is a crop of one of my shots to show Atlantis better.

I had to blow this next one up about a billion, squillion times.

We live something like 30 or 40 miles south of Kennedy Space Center, but even though the shuttle is small from this far away, it's incredibly impressive anyway.

We parked on a good spot, looking north up the Indian River Lagoon, and waited.

We got out of the car at 7:25pm, and leaned on the bridge's guard rail and waited.

At 7:38, right on time, Atlantis lifted off.

In about 3 minutes or so, the thing was out of sight, having shed the two solid boosters.

You can see the light of the flames of the shuttle's engines for a bit longer, but they soon disappear.

We left, and headed up the road, and on the radio, they announced that the shuttle was in orbit, was 120 miles up, and doing great.

At this point, we were less than two miles from where we watched the liftoff. It takes eight and a half minutes to reach orbit. Amazing.

To see the shuttle do it's thing never gets old.

The morning rains and bad weather had my back freaking out and I ate pain pills like House all day, but it was still productive, and ended beautifully with the successful shuttle launch and an amazing sky just before it finally got dark.

And one of the coolest parts was that just after the shuttle had disappeared from sight, the sound finally made it to Melbourne and the rumble was startling, even this far away. I don't worship men, but they sure can do some amazing things sometimes.

Friday, June 8, 2007

Poodles Driving A Car

The top photo of the poodles in the convertible was taken in the store that had Betty Boop out front in yesterday's photos. We have poodles and Lovley Wife had a fit over this. I love our little yappers and can't wait to see them at the end of the day. They greet me like my daughters did when they were little. So, no anti-poodle bigotry in the comments, ya hear? This guy does NOT think that poodles are for wimps. (Just kidding. I actually love to see the look on people's faces when they see a guy my size holding a 6lb ball of white fur with black eyes.)

The bottom photo is just a photo looking down New Haven Avenue in downtown Melbourne, Florida. There's a shop there on the left, with the chalk board out front, that makes soap in the store itself, and the smell is almost as good as walking past a restaurant. You can visit it on the internet at, though due to technical difficulties, you won't be able to smell the store. Sorry.

I tried and tried and couldn't find any html commands to deliver scent to you.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Betty Boop

Taken in front of a great little store in downtown Melbourne, Florida.

The store is full of nick-nacks that the owner picks out herself from all over the world. They're much, much cooler than the kind of things you find in department stores and malls.

Hey, I'm a guy, and even I still love to walk around in this store and always see stuff I'd like to have. Only problem is that engineers are the blue collar workers of the white collar world and my wallet already groans under the weight of my photography addiction. For instance, this table was for sale at $325US, and my mind immediately kicked into gear and said, hey for just $150 more, I could buy that macro lens...

But alas, I bought neither. Such is my life.

Speaking strictly from a man's point of view, I think Betty is still pretty cute for a lady her age.