Daily Image: Lichen 14 July 2024

Shot with the Sony A7Sii and (I think) a Carl Zeiss Jena 35mm f/2.4, probably about f/5.6. The RAW file was post processed with DXO Photolab7 using an Ektachrome 64 film simulation.

I just finished David duChemin’s All Questions Answered webinar a few minutes ago. I had a huge collection of questions sent in by his followers and students and winnowed down the list to maybe a dozen questions.

I found his answers to the questions of interest, but it was his excursions on tangents generated by the questions that I enjoyed even more. It was an hour and a half of listening to him brain dump his thoughts and feelings about the craft and he is articulate. So, it was an easy listen.

I cannot recall if I have any of his books. If not, I will need to rectify that. I am signed up for one of his courses and need to get after that as well. I will learn something, I am sure.

One of the questions was something like “What do you photograph for?” He had an articulate answer for the question (it makes him feel alive) and then enumerated a list of other reasons photographers have for spending the time, effort, and money making photographs. It was a good list.

He also spent time talking about finding the subject/genre that lights a fire in you. Ask the question “What am I passionate about?” Then go chase that.

The rhetorical question “What if I can only travel with my family?” was asked, and he shared Alain Laboile’s craft, which is he only photographs his family1. As with all art, one just has to find a way to make it work within the structure of one’s life.

I have written any number of times — I make photographs because it is one of the things that feeds my soul. There is a focus and joy that comes from noticing something as I move through my daily life and then taking a few minutes to explore it with a camera.

The header image is an example. Sera and I were hiking the trail in the national forest. She was hunting chipmunks. I was looking for the interplay of light, shadow, and texture in the world around me. This particular bit of lichen on a branch caught my eye. There is plenty of light and shadow. There is a muted set of colors, punctuated by the bright light green of the lichen. There is a randomness in the fall of the pine needles. Then there is the branch at a diagonal through the frame.

These things caught my eye2. It is one of several images made of similar subjects that day. Sera happily hunted while I paused to make the images. Then we were off on the trail again, both of us on the lookout for our prey.

Life is short. If there is something that would make you happy, go do that. Make sure it gets done. Because, one day, it will be too late.

I remain grateful. Life is good.

1Note to self: Buy one of Laboile’s books and study the images.
2With a nod and an homage to Wife, who said this to me many times.

Daily Image: Mountain Flower

Shot with Sony A7Sii and a Carl Zeiss Jena 35mm f/2.4 Flektogon at f/4. Raw conversion in DX0 Photolab directly to JPG without modification.

I took The Girl up to our favorite place in the National Forest to walk this morning. It is too hot for her after 0900h, more from the direct sun on her body than the ambient temperature. So, rather than stress her out at Silver Saddle Ranch, we seek elevation and cooler temperatures as well as the shade from the pine trees.

I decided that I have to bring a camera with me. The iPhone makes acceptable images for a number of uses. But I prefer a purpose-built tool that has more control over the image and has better lenses. So I brought the Sony A7Sii with a Carl Zeiss Jena 35mm f/2.4 Flektogon mounted to it. I brought only the one lens so as to avoid the what lens do I choose for this image loop I sometimes fall into.

So, I had a 35mm focal length lens. I had a lens that has character, something a lot of modern glass lacks. So I made images as we walked. Out of the lot, I picked this one as the one I liked the best. It is not perfect and I can do better. I will shoot another tomorrow and see if I can get a better composition.

Edit: I am told the flower is penstemon.

Daily Image: Serious Sera 01 July 2024

She’s looking for the neighbor dogs. Shot with the Sony A7Sii and a lovely little CZJ 35mm f/2.4 Flektogon wide open.

Late Sunday afternoon I decided that I needed a Blizzard in my life. The Girl agreed that was a good idea. So we loaded up and headed to DQ.

They were stupid busy at 1830h on a summer Sunday evening. They were having trouble getting orders done correctly and the timing was awful.

Maybe it was my mistake for going inside the store and not the drive-through. Lesson learned.

My Blizzard came out quick but the burger took forever. So, I ate dessert first (and saved some for The Girl).

I made the capture after we returned home. I have a new-to-me Carl Zeiss Jena (DDR) 35mm f/2.4 Flektogon that needs some love. I had it mounted to the Sony A7Sii and the image is straight out of camera with only resizing to fit my weblog.