Friday, May 31, 2013

What Does This Mean?

Tell tale signs.
Wait for it.
So I've been sort of lounging around here for the past week, you know, enjoying my time off.
Waking up late, my you know what planted on the couch watching Law & Order and eating things that are generally bad for me.
Sort of rewriting the manual on doing nothing.
If you know what I mean.
Well it sort of occurred to me that these days of slumber and decadence are numbered.
I go back to work two months from today.
Sort of.
First day back is like July 30 or something, I got the calendar around here somewhere but I'm not yet ready to look for it.
What I don't know can't hurt me.
So anyways I figure I should get something done while I have all this free time.
Like reading.
This is how far I got on my Adobe Lightroom book:

I guess I should at least read the next chapter.
This is a trend.
This is how far I got in my book on high dynamic range:

I'll get to reading it right after I finish the next chapter on the Lightroom book.
Setting goals is important and it would be nice if I could get through those two books before I go back to work.
I've also got some photo projects on the burner, slowly cooking and simmering, just waiting for the right moment.
Or lighting.
Cause in photography, lighting is everything.
Don't you know.
So anyways, I was digging around in my boxes here, looking for something, I don't remember what.
Digging though my boxes is like going on YouTube: you start off looking for something and end up with another thing totally unrelated to the first thing.
What was I talking about?
What does it mean?
What does what mean?
Oh yes.

A relic from another life.
I vaguely remember those mystical days of lore and legend!
Or was it just a dream?
Charging up the ole Garmin.
What does this mean?
Don't get yer hopes up.
I don't like to disappoint.

Thursday, May 30, 2013


I'm sad.
No really.
I'm really really really sad.
So the other day, I was cleaning up the ole photo bag making sure everything was squeaky clean.
Routine maintenance don't you know.
I was all happy since I'm almost done collecting expensive pieces of glass.
Time to give the ole wallet a break.
Or so I thought.
I've been busy lately, my excuse, so I hadn't really taken a good look at that new lens I got.  Normally I give them a good once over, but the exterior was pristine so I didn't give it much thought.
It was also taking nice pictures.
How that happened, I don't know cause I was fooling around with it, looking at the aperture blades and low and behold what did I find:

No really, I said it twice.
After that I was speechless.
Then I was sad.
I'm still sad.
For one thing, I got it off the ole CL.
For another thing, I got it off a dude on another island.
After thinking about all that, I got sadder!
Well I boxed it up and off it went to Nikon in California.
Won't know what to do until I hear from them hopefully next week.
Thankfully it's under warranty, but I'm not sure if alien invasions are covered and I'm hoping it just needs a cleaning.
I'm not expecting the seller to do anything although I do have 45 days to dispute the sale via Paypal.
I just can't believe I missed that.
Did I mention I was sad?
Stay tuned.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day

Hope you had a fun and safe holiday.
Today, I went in early for my oil change because I had to get down to the beach before sunset.
For the past 15 years, on Memorial Day, there's a lantern floating thingy at sunset and I've missed all 14 of them.
Well this year, I was determined to witness the event with my own eyeballs:

The sun was still sort of high when I got there.
If you squint yer eyeballs, you will see that the beach is lined with folks waiting for ceremony to begin. You gotta get there early to stake out a good spot; the paper estimated around 40,000 folks were going to show up.
So what's this lantern floating thing all about?
It's sort of a Buddhist thing, you write the name of someone on the floating lantern and set it adrift.
Well the tradition has like most things in Hawaii, crossed cultures so you don't even have to be Buddhist to participate.
Okay, the sun is getting lower!

I was quite a bit aways, the crowd was humungous and it was packed!
First you could see all the lit lanterns on the shoreline:

Then, they just float on out.
There's actually a barrier of lanterns out there to keep them from going to California.  The lanterns are recovered, restored, and used again the next year.

Around 5,000 lanterns are prepared.
Pictures don't capture the feel and spectacle.
I should have gotten in closer, but I didn't want to push and shove my way through a solemn crowd just to take pictures.
If you know what I mean.
I stood and watched for a bit, thinking about all the names floating around out there; grand parents, fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters, friends and comrades.
Each floating light representing someone no longer among us.
Memorial Day.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Sunday Early Edition

Schools out!
Okay, not really.
About the Yay! part I mean.
'Cause I'm sad.
I mean I'm sort of happy I don't have to be waking up at five in the morning but I'm sad that the teaching part is over.
Next year will be great!
More on this later.
Okay, so I got me yet another camera bag:

I swear this is like some sort of addiction cause even though I have/had like three bags I keep looking for new bags.
This bag is little different for I was looking something other than a shoulder bag cause my well shoulder was getting tired of lugging all my crap all over the creation even when I wasn't using all my crap at any particular time.
So I went looking for a sling bag, which is kinda like a back pack with only one arm thingy and I found this bag from Think Tank called guess what? the Sling O Matic.
Over the break I plan on going out for some Hot Night Photo Action!(HNPA!) and I figured that I wouldn't need to be carrying around all my stuff.
So I needed something to carry around the basics.
Enter the Sling O Matic 10:

The smallest of the Sling O Matic series.
I actually listed it on the CL when I first got it thinking it was too small, but after playing around with the configurations, I decided to keep it cause it is small and well I don't need another Honking Big Bag(HBB).
The Think Tank bag is also reversible, you can use it over either shoulder.
I won't go into that here, go visit them to see how it works.
I gotta say, this bag is really well built!
Big ole fat zippers and nice stitching and well thought out compartments bring tears of joy to a bagaholic like me.
More on the Sling O Matic if I ever get off the couch and actually go out to take some pictures.
Caught me a cold and I'm couch bound.
At least I can sit around and move all my photo crap from one bag to another.
Anyways, if you are looking for a nice sling type back pack type camera bag, check out the Think Tank stuff.
It's really nice!
Okay, I need to lay down.
My nose is leaking.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013


Oh yeah baby!
I'm World Wide!
Okay, not really.
Well, the blog sort of is.
Anyways, since I've been shooting a lot of land/cityscapes lately, trying to capture this image I have in my convoluted mind, I found that I'm lacking in the wide zone.
I mean my head is sort of big, I have to enter doorways sideways, but I'm talking about wide in a photography sort of way.
Like this:

My room at 16mm.
Super wide!
Well, wider than before.
Except now my wallet is thin.
Really, really, thin.
This is fat:

See my water bottle in the back.
See wide images from the beach:

See the huge distortion.
Check the lifeguard stand:

Something that you can fix with software.
I think.
I've already got some ideas on how to use this thing, but mainly I'm waiting for a nice cloudless day to get my twilight image.
While I was at the beach this morning, I also got this:

Something is happening on  Memorial Day and they were setting up the stage.
I'm going to try and make it even though the beach is going to be packed.
I think this super wide is going to be perfect for the event.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Goodbye, Hello!

Goodbye Seniors!
Bon Chance!
Hello World!
Which is what the graduating class of 2013 is saying this morning.
I got in to see the parking lot full and wondered what the hell was going on.
Then I remembered that it was Project Graduation and most the graduates spent the night here on campus.
Sort of a way to keep out of mischief; you know, new found freedom and all that.
Roll back about 14 hours:

Getting ready!
Folks started lining up two hours before the ceremony.
Non ticket holders in the back on the field:

The letters on the trees are for the graduates to go to after the ceremony.  That way family and friends know where to look for them.
It was an overcast day, and we were hoping it wouldn't....

Poor kids!
The skies opened up right before they made their entrance.
Er, exit.
The rain was a blessing.
It's a local thing.
Fortunately the ceremony was short, they don't read names, but wouldn't you know it, right when it ended the rain stopped and we got a bit of sun!
The kids filed out into the field and to their respective letters and got swallowed up the crowd:

I was going to visit some kids I had and wish them luck, but I didn't feel like wading through a couple thousand folks just to say hey.
It was pretty crazy out there!
I gotta say, most of the kids I ain't worried about.
Some of them though, I wonder if I/we did our jobs and did enough to prepare them for the real world.
I suppose we can only give them the tools, it's up to them to use it.
As Mr. Spock would say: live long and prosper.
There's still some to do as the year wraps up.
I got some final projects to go over and some paperwork to finish up.
I've also started thinking about this year and the mistakes I made and what I'll be doing different next year.
More on this later.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Sunday Early Edition

Welcome to The Flat Tire Bicycle Museum.
All the bicycles here are in pristine condition, never been used.
So anyways, you got all these pictures and what do you do with them?
Seems like a shame to keep them all stored and locked up on yer hard drive.
Like me.
Well that's about to change!
Seeing as how I only have like five pictures worth printing.
Okay, not really.
I might have six.
Pictures worth printing I mean.
Okay, so I got the printer thingy and I've sort of been a printing fiend.
Printing out them six pictures over and over and over.
I need me some frames!
Or do I?
I can get some cheapo 8x10 frames from the craft place for about 12 bucks.
I figure it cost me around a buck each to print them 8x10s out so basically it cost me around 12-14 buck to print and frame each image.
It looks okay:

That's not framed, but you get the idea.
I've been looking at these things called Metal Prints(MP).
A bunch of places do them, like AdoramaPix where I ordered mine, and they aren't that expensive.
Well okay, they kinda are except when you get into the larger sizes then they are comparable to printing and framing.
I don't know exactly what the process is, but it's some sort of heat process that binds the ink to an aluminum plate that is a couple millimeters thick:

The 8x10 set me back 27 bucks, but I forgot to use a 15% off code.
The image looks a little different cause I worked the file after I sent it to be printed.
Anyways, it looks really good!
Can't really tell from a picture of a picture but trust me, it does.
Look good I mean.
You have a choice of four different finishes, that's the brushed gloss, and I have on order a set of samples that show all four.
You also have some mounting choices, the basic is a thingy on the back that you can use to hang or stand:

I want to go large on one of my six nice pictures, maybe like 16x24 or 20x30.
I think to frame is going to be at least a couple hundred while I can just order the MP for around $150.
The thing that kills me is the shipping; for you folks on the Continent, it should be a little less expensive.
I mocked up the image by printing out four 8x10s:

I forgot to make them borderless.
Anyways, I'll let you, the reader, know how it goes.
Today is graduation day!
I got volunteered to help out, so I gotta get all spiffied up and help folks find a seat.
More on this later.
By the way, I haven't quite figured out what's going on with the images from yesterday.
Something to do with how I configure the files for Blogger or maybe Blogger just don't like me.
I think they're getting back at me for taking up so much space.
If you know what I mean.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Up On The Roof

High in the sky.
In the clouds.
Or something.
Okay, not really.
Well, I was sorta up on the roof:

Top floor of a parking lot near downtown Honolulu.
There to take some night shots.
Don't you know.
First of all, I don't really dig shooting off the roof of parking lots.
I mean you gotta pay and here it ain't cheap.
Two hours cost me like ten bucks and as you can see, I wasn't taking up very much space.
Actually it was kinda eerie up there all alone.
Once in a while some car would come by then go back down; I gave everyone the eyeball just in case I had to like protect myself and my precious camera.
You know, the PRO stuff.
Anyways, I've been looking for somewhere to get some images of the waterfront at night.
A specific shot, a view I had from a hospital window.
Well, I'm still looking.
More on this later.
I've also been waiting for a nice day for some twilight shots, where the lights of the city and the fading light of day meet.
I had to wait some:

Two fifty an hour I'm paying.
Tick tock, tick tock.
Please hurry sun.
Okay, something like this:

Except for the clouds.
Bad clouds!
Go away.
Maybe next time.
At least I know where to go when the sky is clear.
Which is what I've been doing lately.
Staking out places to go and get some shots.
Which isn't easy lemme tell you.
I think I'm going to buy a ladder and use it to climb some buildings.
Well, since I was up there, tick tock tick tock and I had some time to burn, tick tock tick tock, I waited a few more minutes to get some city shots with the harbor:

This photography thing ain't easy.
I mean so far this year I've taken about 5000 shots and maybe I really like five or six.
Not a good ratio at all!
Still, I persevere.
The things I do for you, the reader.
So anyways, it's the last week of school and do I have a story to tell!
More on that later.
Stay tuned.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Eclipse May 9

Started right as the end of school bell sounded:

I thought the sunlight was going to change and get all funky, but nothing like that happened.
I guess it wasn't a large enough piece blocked off for that kind o'thing.
Next one is like in 2016 or something.
I hope I'm around.
If you know what I mean.