Thursday, July 2, 2015

Where's the Moon??

Last night should have been perfect for moon photography. Full moon and a moonrise at 7:45 PM. Having the moon rising about the time the sun is setting can make for some dramatic sky shots. I grabbed camera bag with lenses and tripod about 7 PM and headed to a local hiking trail to get set up. I was even prepared to try something new: I had the compass setting of the moonrise (112 degrees) and the compass on my cell phone all ready to go. In theory, this should tell me exactly where the moon will rise (between trees, behind a hill, etc.) and allow for a dramatic shot setup.

Only one problem I didn't foresee (generally not a problem here in S CA) was a big cloudbank off to the east, which totally obscured any view of the moon. Oh well, best laid plans...
It wasn't a total loss, as the skies were beautiful and I got some exercise! I thought the cloud in the above shot was very strange looking.

Looking east... the moon should have been visible just to the right of this photo, but you can see how cloudy it was.

This is a very popular place to ride mountain bikes, and last night was not exception. They were zooming all over the place!

It became obvious to me at some point that the moon was going to be a no-show. Hiking back to my car, I stopped to take the fence shots (below). It was getting dark, so these are long exposure tripod shoots. I really like the way they turned out, and perfect for linking up with Theresa's Good Fences!
Selective focus on the little red flower, and fully open aperture for a shallow depth of field, helped with this shot.
Big tree roots make this section of the trail interesting (although mountain bikers probably don't like them much!)
Also linking with Skywatch Friday. For those who celebrate it, have a great 4th of July weekend!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Evil Red Pony

Not sure, may be you had to be there to appreciate this. One moment, my granddaughter and her baby doll were happily riding along on the red pony...

And a moment later, chaos and pandemonium...
Bad pony!!!
(fortunately, no ponies, grandchildren or dolls were hurt :-)

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Smoky Desert Skies

These photos were taken last weekend out near Joshua Tree. There is a forest fire burning in the eastern San Bernardino mountains, and the wind is pushing all the smoke right into our high desert community. Fortunately, no structures have burned or injuries that I am aware of, but lots of acreage burned. However, it does make for some dramatic skies!
The sun trying to break through the smoky clouds.

Photoshopped for dramatic effect:  Added a texture which included the lightning and rain.
The smoky skies didn't slow down my granddaughter!

My wife pointed out a very faint red glow off on the distant mountain. Using my 400mm lens and tripod, the glow and smoky clouds are much more noticeable in the photo that to the naked eye. It's been a week since these photos were taken, and the fire is still burning. Pretty sure we're going to see a lot more fires this year in Southern CA given our drought situation.

Linking with Skywatch Friday. Click on the link to check out great skies from around the world!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Another Visit to J.T.

These photos were taken during our last visit to Joshua Tree National Park (about 3 weeks ago). If memory serves, they were taken in the Hidden Valley area of the Park. Great clouds on that particular day! Hope you enjoy looking at them as much as I enjoy taking them!!

My wife, granddaughter, and chihuahua ("coyote bait") under a bent-over joshua tree.

I think she's going to be a rock climber some day!
Linking with Skywatch Friday. Click on the link to check out great skies from around the world!!