WHERE MY CAMERA TAKES ME IV

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It has become harder to come up with a topic.  (Hey, I’ve done over 200; gimme a break!)

It also seems harder to find fresh images.  (Hey, I have about 46,000 in my off-line galleries and 3500* on-line.)

Yes, they may be fewer and farther between but there are still scenes that say to my camera, “Please take me home.”  I promise you something really different for later.  Meanwhile, here’s one I’ve admired over the years and finally brought home, The Girl on White Street.

 

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She lives on White Street across from the Robin’s Nest in Mt. Holly, and enjoys the sun and her flower box in all seasons.  I’m always happy to see her.

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NOW FOR SOMETHING NOT AT ALL DIFFERENT…

My friend, Barbara, and our friends, Bob and Nancy D. like to have a golf pro tune them up once a year.  This year’s choice was Shawnee on the Delaware, a beautiful course mostly on an island within the 1909 resort.  I’m not a golfer so I chose to wander around another old stamping ground: the Delaware River National Recreation area which includes Shawnee and runs on up to above Milford.

I photographed the area in 2008 and in 2014 (click here for that post).  Although it’s a beautiful area it’s hard to find a new way to photograph old friends. For this post my camera asked to do some video of Dingmans Falls.  Though it’s akin to watching grass grow here’s twelve seconds of it.

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NEXT:  HOW OLD PEOPLE AMUSE THEMSELVES

Those who have visited this journal will recall how my morning routine begins with coffee and music in my sun room.  My bird feeder is not in view from the sun room so I wondered if I could lure some of the birds into view.  I tossed a half cup of bird food on the deck table and sat down inside with coffee and camera.  The breakfast buffet yielded a number of fun shots.  This cardinal seems to be skeptical of the free lunch but he eventually enjoyed it.

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NO, MY AUTO-FOCUS WASN’T BROKEN.

April Showers.  When they paused the sun came out quickly and I was pulled from my town house by the sparkling.  I was pleased with this shot.  I like the purples and greens and the fact that the de-focused raindrops became milky glass marbles.  This previously appeared on Facebook but not everyone gets to see those images.

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AND OTHERWISE FROM THE WANDERING AND WONDERING CAMERA…

Here’s a friend from Sanibel last winter.  There are plenty of pelican images around but I thought this self-scratcher was different.  In their off-guard moments they’re human after all.

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This from a Chanticleer visit this spring.

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This next image was also seen on Facebook this spring but, again, not everyone gets to see those offerings.  For out-of-towners it’s the roof of the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia, the home of the Philadelphia Orchestra and other great performances.  The architecture has called to me for years and a few colleagues have captured it well, notably as here by Denise Bush several years ago.  During  a concert intermission recently I looked up and saw what I wanted, particularly under an overcast sky.

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AND NOW FOR A RIGHT-BRAIN EPISODE

My right brain woke early one morning and for some who-knows reason got to wondering what I could do with overlaying some of my images.  I’m not getting as much satisfaction from my landscape work, and I’ve been trying to see things differently so maybe this would be productive.  A colleague, Doreen R., has done a lot of such creative work with software tools; she calls it “playing around.”  And so…….

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This is a software blend of two of my place mat images.  The goldfish were photographed in a tank at Petsmart.  The turbulence was captured during a workshop with Jeff Lovinger; it was a tidal stream near Provincetown.  It won’t appeal to all nor will it make it as a Christmas card but I was very pleased with the result.  Click here for a full screen view.

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* Erratum:  My original post said that I had over 16,000 images in my on-line galleries, and that’s incorrect.  There are some 3500 images in the public galleries which have enjoyed over 16000 views.  My off-line storage contains over 46,000 images.

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FALLS AND FALLEN FARMS

Our South Jersey Camera Club recently organized a weekend field trip to the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area.  Aside from the great camaraderie we also enjoyed working several scenic locations.

We began with Dingman’s Falls which is up a road west of Dingman’s Ferry on U.S. 209. The road leads to a visitors’ center where the trail to the falls begins.  One curmudgeonly observation: Why can’t the destinations be closer to the parking areas? It’s always, “Oh, we’ll park here and then it’s only a mile in.”  I pack at least fifteen pounds of camera, lenses, tripod, filters, spare battery, water, and etc. and those one mile hikes seem much longer.  On several of the field trips I’ve taken with pros I’ve always suggested caddys.

But, I get there eventually. Our first stop, Dingman’s Falls, seen here, wasn’t showing in its best light. There was too much sun and too bright a sun, causing too much contrast between lighted and shadow area. It then becomes a post-processing challenge which requires software either to resolve multiple images with different exposures, or for judicious post-processing of single images.* Never mind all that, it’s still a dramatic scene.

Image 01

 

I first photographed Dingman’s in the summer of 2008.  Maybe the lower left was dark then, too, because I focused just on the upper third as shown here.  I also chose a 1/4” exposure then, providing the creamy look in contrast to last month’s exposure of 1/64″.

Image 09

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There is something to be said for both of the above images but I seem to gravitate towards the scene-filling milky water.

From Dingman’s we headed up 209 to the Raymondskill Falls area.  Without my caddy I didn’t go all the way down to photograph the main falls.  There was, however, running water and cascades along the way.  I enjoyed sitting on the edge of the embankment and shooting into the water on its way down.

Image 02

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We finished up the late afternoon in the Childs Recreation site which features … guess what … more falls.  By now I was somewhat desperate for an interesting falls scene; I spotted this and brought it home.

Image 03

 

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A late, great dinner at the Apple Valley Family Restaurant in charming Milford  finished the day.

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The next morning we were out early in search of fallen farms.  In the late 50’s Congress initiated a project to dam the Delaware near Tocks Island, north of the Delaware Water Gap.  The primary purpose was for flood control but also for power generation and water supply.  Over the ensuing years the government acquired a great deal of land on both shores of the Delaware, in part land that would be flooded by backing up the river, and in part for recreational area.  The projected 37 mile-long lake project was vigorously opposed by residents and environmental activists and, as a result, by the states’ governors, and it was disapproved in the 70’s and reviewed and rejected again in ’97.  In 2002 it was officially de-authorized.

Our day would take us to three of the old farms, alive and productive before Tocks Island but now fading and deteriorating.  Here was the first … foreboding and squishy from the previous night’s rain and morning mists.  I was drawn first to the remaining wall of the old barn.

The barn that was.

The barn that was.

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The night’s rain and the morning mist gathered as droplets on the rambler rose branches which were just beginning to sprout leaves, the drops capturing the trees beyond them.

Image 06

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The early morning light on this deserted place of former life led me to see these trunks in a dark way.

The hanging tree.

The hanging tree.

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At this point I felt a compelling need to think about and plan the rest of my shots here.  A colleague captured my meditation.  (After all, we had started at 6:00.)

Image 12

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Moving on, another forgotten farm included this left-behind, peeling canoe.  How many happy times was this enjoyed on the Delaware?

Image 10

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Our final farm visit was to the Zimmerman Farm, the summer home from 1944 of the New York City artist, Marie Zimmerman.  The farmland was originally acquired by her father in 1882 and she grew up there, frequently camping and fishing alone.  The family home on the property is being maintained and some of the farm buildings remain although they are under siege.  (This was another of those spots where we parked and walked “Only about a mile in.”)

The invasion of the vines.

The invasion of the vines.

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The pig barn stands although the doors and windows are memories as are the pigs.

Image 11

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There is a gallery of these and other images from the trip.  Click here.

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*[A tech note on image processing. Cameras don’t produce good (for viewing) images right out of the sensor. Although there are several million pixels worth of detail the camera still has to integrate all their outputs to make some sense of the scene. Most cameras will produce a so-called jpeg image which is the result of applying internal software to the colors and to the brightness and sharpness of the pixels. For point-and-shoots the results are enjoyable and that’s good because there isn’t any alternative. For Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR) cameras, however, one may choose to shoot in the so-called raw mode, or raw plus jpeg. The raw mode captures all the signal from each pixel such that the original image data can be processed by a raw editor in one’s PC. The raw file is unchanged by this processing and is always available for re-editing later if desired.]