Summer 2011, wow, that went fast!

•October 2, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Summer is my least favorite season! It seems like there’s always too much to do, and for me, it is the least photogenic season. Now that my favorite is here, maybe I can get motivated to keep up with my blog.

First, to get caught up. Over the summer, most of my photos were on the beach and it seems the sand went out of it’s way to form wonderful patterns. There’s a lot of black sand on the beaches here, which, combined with shadows and wonderful wind ripples, is irresistable.

Some of the driftwood caught my eye as well!

Quite a bit of my work over the summer was in black and white, which I’ve always enjoyed.

I expect to move on to a lot of macro work shortly, as the rainy season is starting, and that means mushrooms! I always feel very creative in the fall, hopefully, that will extend to writing as well.


For Fun, A Couple of our Earlier “Motorhomes”

•April 29, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Compared to the other “motorhomes” I’ve had, the Sunrader is a rocket! My first, built in 1973, was on a 1935 Chev flatbed truck. She had 68.5 HP and weighed about 8700 pounds. 0-30 was 3 blocks on the level with no headwind! Top speed was around 42 and on hills, she was a real challenge. Non syncro gears meant double clutching, which was slow, so starting on a hill, it wasn’t unusual to be stuck in 2nd at around 12-15mph to the top. a rocket compared to some of my former motorhomes. The 35 Chevy was rated at 67.5 HP and weighed about 8000 pounds.

1935 Chevrolet 1 1/2 ton truck with cabin.

Our 2nd RV was again, home built in 1983. It’s on a 47 Chevy, non syncro 4 speed, still weighed in about the same, but had more oomph @ 90 HP.
1947 Chevrolet with our 2nd cabin.

On the level, again, NO headwind, we could make about 52 with this one, the streamlining really helped, especially in windy conditions.

A New “Toy” to help with my Nature/Landscape Photography!

•April 22, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Toy as in Toyota Sunrader Mini-RV. It’s an older, 1984 model, only 17’8″ long, but fully self contained. It should be perfect as a base camp for hiking/exploring more of Oregon and Washington.

Toyota Sunrader

I’m buying it from a friend with 3 kids and a dog, it is just too small for them, but for my wife and I, along with our dog Tug, it should work just fine. We found that our little Play Pac trailer was truly too small for us, so it’s up for sale now.

Our campsite, with vintage fiberglass Playpak trailer

Oddly, our Honda, pulling the Play Pac gets around 14.5 mpg. The Sunrader, although only 112 HP has gotten our friends, on long trips, in the area of 19-20 mpg, although pretty slow. Slow is good when you’re a photographer!

Wow, a sunny day at last!

•April 20, 2011 • Leave a Comment

We’ve been cursed with an extremely wet and cold spring this year, so I’ve hardly managed to take a picture for weeks. Yesterday, it stayed chilly, only about 45, but the sun was out! Since there was a really low tide in the morning, we headed out to Cape Blanco State Park and walked down the beach to the mouth of the Elk River. The low angle light really accentuated the patterns in the blowing sand.

Sand Swirls at Cape Blanco

Looking north at the Cape, the water was super blue, breaking waves were sparkling white, if we hadn’t been chilly in the cold breeze, it would have been perfect. Still, it was pretty dang close!

Shadows, Sand and Surf

Time flies when you’re…Busy!

•March 13, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Wow, the middle of March and I haven’t even posted anything in over a month. Quite a day Friday, I was just getting out of bed when the tsunami siren sounded. Since we had a false alarm just a couple weeks ago, due to a wiring fault, I wasn’t too concerned, but did look online. Ouch, big earthquake in Japan, so it’s real, if not anything real soon here. Since we are at 214 foot elevation, no worries. The surge here was interesting, but did no damage anywhere around Port Orford.

South at Brookings, the harbor is a mess, with docks and boats loose everwhere, with many sunk. Crescent City, California’s harbor is even worse. Watched a video on youtube of a gorgeous big sailboat heading out to sea, then crashing into the jetty. Quite a few are out to sea, and others, still attached to docks in groups are just drifting. Now we have a storm happening, with winds in the 45-70mph range, gusts at Cape Blanco already around 60. Also, many put out to sea to avoid the damage that would happen in port, and now are stuck with no place to go, unless they can make it up to Coos Bay.

Of course, this isn’t even a drop in the bucket compared to the mess in Japan. What a terrible time for all those people, and with the infrastructure destroyed in so many places, along with the Nuke plant emergencies, it’s likely to get worse before it gets better.

I worked on another vintage photo colorization in spare time the last couple days. This is one of my favorite railroad photos in my collection. I bought this negative back when I was 15 (1966) and living in Tacoma, WA. I saw an, ad in Railroad magazine for NP negatives for sale in Troutdale, Oregon. I rode the morning passenger train to Portland, took a bus to Troutdale, and walked to the gentleman’s house. I paid $35 for about 50 negatives, this was a lot of money for me, I worked in a library for $1.25 and hour!

This is in Missoula, Montana in the 30’s, with NP W class Mike #1533 leading Q-6 Pacific #2254.

I’ll admit, it makes a beautiful B & W print, but I wanted to see how it would look in color too. So, with a few hours in Photoshop, I came up with this result.

I do have a tutorial on colorizing if you want to give it a try.

More info added to scanning textured photos tutorial

•February 4, 2011 • 1 Comment

I’ve added three more examples, one dry scanned (the normal way), wet scanned and dry scanned then using the Photoshop Blur/Surface Blur filter to mostly eliminate the texture. Wet scanning works best, but if it’s not an option, this filter improves things quite a bit.

Although the rest of the nation is presently suffering under winter conditions, the southern Oregon coast has been blessed with spring weather! The last 2 weeks, we’ve seen nearly continuous sunshine and daytime temperatures ranging from the upper 50’s to 71! It’ll be a real booger when things get back to our normal rain, wind and gray skies.

•January 1, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Having come into this world near the middle of the 20th Century, it’s hard to believe the new date! Especially from the vantage point of a history and vintage image fan, the changes that have occured are mind boggling. In photography alone, who’d have ever thought?

Film would be nearly extinct.
Restoration of a damaged photo would be relatively easy in Photoshop, instead of hours retouching a negative or airbrushing a print and re-photographing it.
A 5 year old pro camera would be almost useless. In 1975 a 5 year old high end camera was still an expensive item.
Your $$$ darkroom equipment would be obsolete and nearly unsaleable, when 20 years ago a 25 year old enlarger was as useful as when it was new!

Would I go back to film and a traditional chemical darkroom? NO WAY!, although the nostagia value would make it fun once every few years.

I hope in the following few months to get more tutorials on image restoration online and some tips on using Adobe Bridge as an image cataloging tool. Of course, as time and weather permits, my main hope is for more hiking in the beautiful Pacific Northwest!

Visit my website to see my own photography, as well as my large collection of historic images of the area and railroad history also. Earth-Sea Imagery

Happy New Year All!