05-17-13 Our Neighbor's Tulips I

2013 05-17 Our Neighbor's Tulips I by Scott Shephard My wife has nice flowers but does our neighbor and the other day I couldn't help but be drawn to her collection of yellow tulips, which had just bloomed. The light was poor but I enhanced the scene with on-camera flash. I rarely use flash but I have taught my students that it's ok to use flash as long as it doesn't overpower the scene. In the case of this photo, I think it works.

I call this post "Our Neighbor's Tulips I" because she also has some amazing deep purple tulips and I am waiting patiently for them to bloom. And though I've featured them before, those who follow this blog know that I like 2nd chances on most photos I take.

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05-14-13 Finally!

2013 05-14 Finally! by Scott Shephard I call this post "Finally!" because after what seems like and endless winter and cold spring, it finally feels like summer. And my wife's daffodils are celebrating the occasion by blooming.

This photo, incidentally, started out as a completely different concept. In the failing light of a beautiful day, I noticed the heads of these daffodils bobbing in the gusty wind. And I thought this would be a perfect time to try dragging the shutter, a process that uses camera flash and a fairly slow shutter speed. I took 5 or six using this technique but didn't really like any of them.

So instead, I put the camera as close to the ground as I could and tried to focus on on a single daffodil. After I took the photo, I noticed the camera was seeing a very interesting deep, blue bokeh in the out-of-focus boughs of the a pine tree behind the garden. And so I ended up with this photo. I will probably try the dragging the flash thing another time.

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04-29-13 Rite of Spring

By Scott Shephard

2013 04-29 Rite of Spring by Scott Shephard
2013 04-29 Rite of Spring by Scott Shephard

I would be the first to say that my crocus photo is nothing to write home to Mom about. But these flowers are significant to me for two reasons: first, they are the first flowers to appear in my wife's garden this spring. And given that we have endured a fairly long winter here in South Dakota, even little yellow flowers are cause for celebration.

The other reason is that this photo is one of about 240 photos of the same subject over a two hour period that I took as part of a time lapse study. This was my first effort at this kind of photography and though I don't know that I have the patience to do it often, I am happy with my first attempt. Here's the exciting YouTube video, soon to go viral, no doubt. Incidentally, the two hours have been compressed into 14 seconds.

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04-17-09 Gliding In For A Landing

04-17-09-gliding-in-for-a-landing I wasn't trying to find another picture where yellow is the dominant color for two consecutive "A Photo A Day" pictures. But here's another photo with yellow. . .

A few years ago I was invited to take a ride in the Lake Area Technical Institute glider. Greg Klein was the pilot and we had a great trip. This is a powered glider, which means that it uses a conventional engine and propeller to take off but once the plane climbs to 10,000 feet or so, the engine is turned off. Greg told me that the engine could be re-started but I could tell that this wasn't considered "cool." Thus, we landed as a glider. Another thing that wasn't cool was when Greg took his hands off the controls and told me to steer. Shortly after that, I started to hear a beep, which Greg calmly told me was the "stall warning indicator." I quickly turned control over to him. I'd rather take pictures than fly a plane.

In this photo we are a little north of Lake Kampeska. The skinny body of water towards the top of the photo is Lake Pelican. The Watertown airport is visible just forward of the end of the wing. If you are wondering why there is a military insignia on the wing, it is because this plane was used as a trainer by the Air Force Academy and then was "retired." Now LATI is putting it to good use with their students in the aviation program. Another good use is giving people like me rides. Have I said how impressed I am with Lake Area Technical Institute?

Canon 1D Mark II 1/500s f/16.0 ISO320 17mm (Canon 17-24mm f/4.0L)

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04-16-09 Golden Folds

04-16-09-golden-folds Sometimes I don't have much to say. Today is an example. I hope the soft yellow tones sooth you (should you need soothing :-) )

Canon 1D Mark II 1/200s f/4.0 ISO400 100mm (Canon 100mm f/2.8 macro)

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