How many trips have I made to L.A. to visit with my dad in the last year? And how many times have I said “This time I’m going to get to the beach?”

Well, dear readers, I finally made it.

Torrance Beach

This is not to say that this trip is not without its stresses, but it was nice to get away for a couple of hours.

I fixed it

I was somewhat satisfied with this shot before, and thought I’d done enough to show the texture and pop the blue.

But then I processed it again using Topaz Clarity.  I’m liking this a lot more. How about you?

Coming and Going

We went to the movies yesterday for Father’s Day (Star Trek: Into Darkness, at Sweetie’s request. Yes, it was a fun movie.)  Outside the theater is the interactive fountain, and though there weren’t very many kids there at the time, I caught this little boy having some fun.

Sweetie surprised me by heading into the fountain himself, and somehow he managed to hang out the center without getting too wet.

Friday Night and f/1.8 (mostly)

At the dinner the other night I slapped on my 85mm and opened the aperture setting as far as it could go. The hangar is lit by ambient sunlight from the hangar doors and high hanging tungsten lights within, and while I was looking to compensate for that, I mostly wanted to blur as much of the very busy background as possible.

ISO 100, 1/200s, f/1.8

There is a lot of story swapping that goes on at an event like this.

ISO 100, 1/200s, f/1.8

ISO 100, 1/200s, f/1.8

ISO 100, 1/80s, f/1.8

Other times, you’re just taking it all in.

ISO 100, 1/80s, f/1.8

Or taking a breather . . .

ISO 100, 1/80s, f/1.8

You all chat away. I’ve got my cookie.

ISO 100, 1/80s, f/1.8


ISO 100, 1/80s, f/1.8

I gave these two black and whites a little different treatment.  I also switched my ISO and stopped down my aperture a bit, as it was getting later and I was losing the light coming in from the hangar door.


ISO 400, f/2.8, 1/80s

Dessert was ice cream from two strategically placed carts. It looks like this guy got a bit more than he should have!

ISO 400, f/2.8, 1/80s

To show you what I was trying to avoid with my wide aperture, here are two I shot at f/8.

Volunteers at the front of the hangar, later in the evening.

ISO 400, f/8, 1/80s

Checking out the silent auction.

ISO 400, f/8, 1/80s

Sweetie being presented with the Volunteer of the Year award.

ISO 400, f/2, 1/160s

Photo Club Shoot: “How to take great photos even in the worst outdoor lighting”

We traipsed out into the midday Nevada sun to give it a go.

What we were told:  Try to stay in the shade or keep the sun to your model’s back and fill with flash.  I pretty much knew that stuff before the shoot, but I still had a good time.

For some reason, I spent most of my time with Sarah.

But I got a few decent shots of Kindra too.

This one was shot in full sun with a diffuser panel.

This one I used fill-flash.

Can you see a difference?

I read a post a while back that noted that the reason why jpgs look so different (read: flat and odd colors) on Facebook from the jpg on our computers has to do with the compressing FB does to the photos. Many of us have also noticed the same phenomenon on WordPress.  This article suggested saving images as PNG instead. So here is my experiment.

The photos were all resized to 1800×1200.  The png images are larger in mb size of the jpg (3.34mb vs 1.34mb-color photos, 1.64mb vs 1.13mb-BW photos), so it seems to me a bit more data is being kept. But really, I don’t see a difference in the shots when I open them in separate tabs, or here on the web page. Do you?  I see a bit more definition in the black and white, and a bit more brightness in the color, I think. Or that could just be my eyes playing tricks on me.

I suppose I’ll have to try it on Facebook, though I usually publish photos to FB directly from SmugMug rather than upload directly to FB.