Tuesday, June 13, 2023

SpaceX Starlink Mission 5-12 Launch As Seen in Port Canaveral, Fla.


Fuji X-T4 with Fuji 10-24mm lens at 10mm, f/16 @ 4 minutes

Fuji X-T4 with Fuji 10-24mm lens at 10mm, f/16 @ 4 minutes
SpaceX Starlink Mission 5-11, liftoff at 3:10am, Monday June 12, 2023 from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, Launch Complex 40.

I was actually able to get out and set up my camera 45 minutes before scheduled liftoff (3:10am Eastern).

I went to a place I thought might make a decent foreground for a night rocket launch streak photo.

This was taken in the little park next to the Rodney Ketchum Boat Ramp in Port Canaveral, Florida.

This was, without a doubt, one of the easiest night rocket launch photos I have ever shot.  The shot is actually kind or bland, but I got there and parked, set up tripod and camera.  Set my camera settings (4 minutes at f/16) and took a couple of practice shots for overall placement checking.

The rocket went up the second its launch window began.  When the rocket was out of sight and the exposure done, I packed up and came home.

I was gone and back fast enough that my lovely bride woke up and said, "Oh No! Was it cancelled?"

This despite being a 45 minute drive each way to get to this location.

We've been here 27 years and rocket launches never gets old.

A long time exposure at night usually allows in enough light that the final image has a deep blue sky.  Not on this night.  It was an almost completely clear night, but I guess takeoff was in the absolute darkest part of the night and didn't get any blue in the sky. As a result of the muted color, I'm really liking the B&W version of this shot the better of the two.

Saturday, May 14, 2022

First Post in Just Under Two Years

1/80s @ f/8 Fuji X-T4, Nikon 400mm Ai f/5.6 lens w/Nikon TC-14B teleconverter (840mm 35mm eq)

1/350s @ f/8 Fuji X-T4, Nikon 400mm Ai f/5.6 lens w/Nikon TC-14B teleconverter (840mm 35mm eq)

Confession: My knowledge of Central Florida bird names is on par with my knowledge of the mathematics that underpin quantum mechanics.

Upper photo taken in my front yard. I looked for matching birds on the interwebs and found none that look like this.  Therefore, the bird on top is henceforth named The LaraStreetUnknownBirdNo.1.

Lower photo taken in my back yard. I'm going way out on a limb and say this bird is a female cardinal, aka red bird.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Canaveral Lock, Port Canaveral

Fujifilm XT-20, Fujinon 18-135mm lens at 18mm, f/16, 1/80sec @ ISO 200
Fujifilm X-T10, Rokinon 10mm lens, f/8, 1/320sec., ISO 200
Fujifilm X-T10, Rokinon 10mm lens, f/8, 1/500sec., ISO 200
Fujifilm XT-20, Fujinon 18-135mm lens at 135mm, f/20, 1/640sec @ ISO 200

A few weeks ago I had no idea that Canaveral Lock existed.

I was scouring the internet for local photographic opportunities and came across a mention of the lock being at the west end of the ship channel, near Exploration Tower and Jetty Park.

Canaveral Lock was built when a canal was dug in the narrow bit of land between what is now the port's ship channel and the Banana River Lagoon.

Only problem was the small, daily, three to four foot tides that would make the narrow canal a rushing river.

Answer, the lock.

I headed up to the lock, about thirty five or forty miles north of my home to see and to photograph. The channel and lock are at the southern end of Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. The strange thing is that I have been within a half mile of this lock many times as I have been in this area photographing rocket launches and whatnot.

So, as locks go, this one deals with the small tides in the area, but it's pretty neat to me nonetheless.
The four photos are: 1, foot entrance for visitors. 2, the gates of the eastern end that open into the western Port Canaveral ship channel. 3, a pleasure boat going through the opening eastern gates. 4, looking west down the length of the lock into the Banana River Lagoon (and the ultra-bright evening sun).

Monday, August 13, 2018

Wood Stork in Port Canaveral

Fujifilm XT-20, Fujinon 18-135mm lens at 135mm, f/5.6, 1/30sec @ ISO 200
Many people would recognize this as a stork.
It's not a particularly great picture of a stork, but is is a clear, close picture of a stork.
I posted this so y'all could get a good look at what a stork really looks like in detail.
Enlarge the photo and get a good look at this thing.
When we moved to Florida all those years ago, I was not prepared for just how ugly these birds are.
Their head/neck/face is the stuff of nightmares.
Plus, although they are fairly large birds, they're way too small to be carrying infant babies hanging from their beaks in white bed sheets long distances in flight.
That leaves me wondering, "Where DID I come from?"

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Before Sunrise at Castaways Point Park

tripod, Fujifilm XT-20, Fujinon 18-135mm lens at 18mm, f/14, 25sec @ ISO 200
I had gone to Port Canaveral to see a rocket launch, but the rocket launch was scrubbed.
Instead of going straight home, I went to Castaways Point Park in Palm Bay.
Coming down I-95, as I got to Palm Bay, I could juuuust make out a blueness to the sky instead of blackness, and knew morning twilight was here.
The park is just a few miles from our home, so I went and set up my tripod in a place where I knew the sun would eventually come up behind this derelict sailboat at the park.
(I used The Photographer's Ephemeris to project where the day's sunrise would occur in relation to various points in the park. On this morning, I used the Android mobile app version of The Photographer's Ephemeris on my phone.  So, I knew within a few feet of exactly where I needed to stand to get the sunrise and the boat together. I cannot tell you just how amazingly useful the ephemeris has been to me for several years now.)
By the time I had my tripod/camera set up, the horizon was orange.
So I look my first shot, above.
It was a great sunrise, more photos later, but I just loved the deep blue sky that appeared with the orange band at the horizon in this 25sec shot.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Great Blue Heron and Great Orange Sunset

tripod, Fujifilm XT-20, Fujinon 18-135mm lens at 135mm, f/22, 1/4sec @ ISO 200
tripod, Fujifilm XT-20, Nikon 300mm w/1.4X (35mm = 630mm), f/8, 1/80sec @ ISO 400
Much of this past spring, and most of this summer, about twenty minutes before sunset, a solid wall of clouds have appeared in the distance and right along the horizon most days.
You just have to go out anyway, but this day surely looked clear less than an hour before sunset, so I was hopeful for a few shots of the red ball 'o sun touching the horizon.
My hopes were mostly dashed.
The sun gave its all though, sending some bright orange rays through the sudden clouds as if he were determined to not be blocked.
As I took a few photos of the orangey sky with this derelict pier/boat cover in the foreground, a great blue hereon flew up and landed on the boat cover.
He posed there for a while.
Long enough for me to go to my camera bag on the picnic table near me and get out and change my lens to my old Nikon 300mm f/5.6 lens with the Nikon TC-14 extender and a Nikon AI to Fujifilm X lens adapter. This gives me a 450mm telephoto on my crop frame sensor, and the 35mm equivalent of a 630mm lens.
Sometimes I feel I should wag that semi-heavy beast around with me and on this day, followed my gut. Sometimes I have carried it around without taking it out, but it paid off on this particular evening.
That lens allowed me to get a couple of pretty neat shots of the heron up there against that dramatic orange backdrop.

Monday, August 6, 2018

Blue Sky Rainbows

Fujifilm XT-20, Fujinon 18-135mm lens at 88mm, f/14, 1/320sec @ ISO 200
Fujifilm XT-20, Fujinon 18-135mm lens at 32mm, f/14, 1/200sec @ ISO 200

Is there such a thing?
Did I just invent a new term?
Probably not.  I know, I know.  Google it.
Mixed results. Not exactly like I was thinking of the term, but close enough I guess.
A blue sky rainbow is a rainbow that appears on an otherwise sunny day with lots of blue sky.
I saw two of them last week within three days.
The first one was this past Wednesday at a local park, Castaways Point Park in Palm Bay.
There is a sailboat wrecked there that has been there well over a year now.
I had gone there Thursday evening at about 6pm so the afternoon sun would be just right on that wrecked boat.
There was a rainbow above the boat from the shore of the park and I posted that photo on this blog on Wednesday, August 2nd.
I was in Port Canaveral on Saturday and saw another one.
Neither one was a complete arch from end to end, but I rarely have seen a full rainbow anyway.
I had visited Canaveral Lock and when I looked eastward down the ship channel toward the Atlantic, there was one end of another blue sky rainbow.
That second one was harder to photograph, it was fading even from the second I first noticed it.
The two photos on today's post are from the rainbow I saw on Saturday in Port Canaveral.
Scroll back in this blog to Wednesday's post to see the clearer one, at a local park.
Come to think of it, both rainbows were out over the Atlantic.
Still, it's a nifty phenomenon.

Genesis 9:13 I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth.