August 5, 2011

Frogs, Lanterns and a Canon in Macro Mode


I am fond of this photo of a little frog I ran into at Tsugawa Nursery some weeks ago. This small creature, roughly the size of a thumbnail, was sitting inside a granite lantern's window. The lantern was nestled up against the koi house. It was just the thing I was looking for but I had passed by it several times without seeing it as it was shaded and among other unrelated statuary near the back of the nursery.

Looking over the lantern I saw this bright spot of green. It was still and a few steps away. I thought it was plastic until a garden rep told me, "No! He rests there every morning soaking in the sun until he gets warm and slips away for the rest of the day."

Intrigued by his size and his story I amused myself trying to capture his image while waiting for responses to the text messages I was sending to my husband about our impending purchase.

In this situation it is unlikely I would ever be carrying my DSLR. I was at Tsugawa's to buy a lantern and my photographic tool of choice was text mode on my iPhone where I was taking pictures of prospective purchases, sending them to my husband, and waiting for his response.

It did so happen, however, that I had my Canon point and shoot in my purse. It is a camera that has been well used and well loved for years. By no means the most current model, it has been a staple in my food photography since acquisition and while I have since enlisted a Nikon D5000 in my arsenal of photo equipment I still reach for the little Canon when I want to use the camera instinctively, with little thought or care. It is easy to carry and doesn't get in the way. I also find that I often have it buried in my purse when I didn't make a plan to have photo equipment with me at all.

To capture an image of this small creature I needed to push my camera into a spot I could not get down and look into clearly myself. I could angle the camera to see the view screen but the brightness of the sun kept me from seeing that clearly to check the focus. So I shot blind. In macro mode the camera found my intended subject perhaps 75% of the time. I took multiple shots for insurance. This is my favorite and I think it is as good in every way as anything I would have gotten with my DSLR had there been space to slip it into in the first place.

July 18, 2011

On the Edge

Could there be a more perfect place to share a picnic for two?

On a hike of the Cape Horn Loop Trail I captured this image of two hikers sharing a sandwich as they admired the fruit of their journey; a fabulous view of the Columbia River Gorge.

July 5, 2011

July at the Second Story Gallery


This image of two Trillium along the Cape Horn Loop Trail in the Columbia River Gorge is one of my favorites. I took it a couple of years ago on a bright spring day. All along our hike these wildflowers charmed me again and again. Their blossoms, in shades from white to crimson, basked in the filtered sunlight while nestled among a contrast of lush green leaves and spare brown twigs.

I am reposting this image because it is on display this month at the Second Story Gallery in Camas, WA, along with two more pixographs from Pixel Pearls, On the Edge and At Pixel Point, and a variety of images captured by other wonderful photographers in the Columbia River Gorge.

Stop by the gallery and take in the views!

April 24, 2011

The Brightness of Your Dawn


Arise, shine, for your light has come.
and the glory of the LORD rises upon you...
Isaiah 60:1

Happy Easter!

February 13, 2011

Heart of Astoria


Life isn't all sunshine and puppies. That's a reality that settles in quickly in the Pacific Northwest, especially the sunshine part, especially in winter.

By mid-winter the sunshine is most sorely missed. Under a veil of gray clouds rain threatens and mists and falls. I find myself craving light and seeking it everywhere, anywhere. I chew little orange pellets of vitamin D3 and plug in my therapeutic blue light panel.

Sometimes though, when the mood is right and I filter the light from within, I begin to see a little radiance sparking in all directions. Sitting at a window table in a restaurant in Astoria, savoring oysters and chocolate with my Valentine, I feel the nudge of light dancing in the streets. I see it in festive dress as it floats from the streetlights and bounces from the windows onto the damp pavement with a bright joy. Reflections scatter. The dusty gray has been washed clean and is gilded with luminous color that peers through the window and rests on the table beside me.

In a small vase the colored light gathers and polishes a collection of baubles. At a certain angle the colorful baubles appear to be folded along a corner seam. They reach into my mind like a Rorschach evaluation and I see a heart there, folded and cut like a homemade Valentine.

Gazing sideways into that vase at the edge of my table I have to smile. If I just looked harder I might even find sunshine and puppies.