Mostly photography but with bits of running, tech, and musings on life

Atascadero City Hall

Photo of Atascadero City Hall Building

Was in Atascadero for a meeting early yesterday morning which meant I just had to take a moment to photograph the City Hall building. It’s such a wonderfully photogenic piece of historic architecture! When you’ve got such an amazing subject, especially with nothing else crowding around it, there’s a feeling that you’re really cheating at photography… Hard to go wrong!

evening photowalk


Got in a nice photowalk this evening. It’s been an overcast day, which always leads to some nice soft light and moody images. With Flickr still being down for their migration, it seemed good to post the shots here.

bike path [Day 3795]

Usually I focus farther back into a shot, but this time I liked going for a softer look caused by focusing nearby. I felt it worked well with the overcast light.

Photo-a-Day: Year 11, Day 143 – Total Days: 3795

construction zone





track selfie

Photo-a-Day: Year 11, Day 142 – Total Days: 3794

Flickr is currently down as a result of a planned maintenance, which means I’ve been unable to update photo of the day! That looks like a good excuse to post something here!

Took this shot with my iPhone while at the San Luis Distance Club’s speed workout at the CalPoly track. I love getting to run on a proper track! The surface is soooo good to run on and it makes it much easier to practice going fast. We were doing 400 meter repeats and it was a great workout!

Cherry Blossoms on a Dreary Day

cherry blossoms on a dreary day
Canon 6D | ISO 400 | 100mm | f/3.2 | 1/200 sec

Even on dreary, on-and-off again rainy days, there’s quite a bit of beauty to be found…

Portrait: Laura


Last fall, I had the chance to do some photo work for a local lawyer’s office. They were handling an estate with some vintage cars that were going up for auction and photos of the vehicles were needed. The cars were fun subjects to shoot, and the payday was nice, too! My contact on dealing with all of this was Laura, and it was a pleasant surprise when she contacted me recently to see if I could handle some personal headshots needed for an event she was part of. As someone that has largely been at the hobby level of photography, it’s rather nice when someone you don’t really know comes back to you with repeat business because they liked the first job you did for them!

We arranged to handle the shoot at her office (I even managed to lug all the studio equipment up the elevator in one trip) and it was a great time. The space we had to work in–a conference room–was pretty small and crowded, what with a big conference table and chairs taking up most of the space, but we made it work. Besides, it was just a headshot, so the needs weren’t too complex. It did, however, mean that I wasn’t able to get her positioned as far from the backdrop as I would have liked in order to help keep shadows and creases in the cloth out of the shot. So, the background wasn’t quite as I would have liked, but that gave me a great chance to practice some Photoshop techniques for cleaning it up, and I’m glad I had that opportunity! It meant I ended up adding in some Photoshopped “light spill” to help make sure the cleaned up background still blended nicely with the subject and I loved how it turned out. Here’s the shot that was my favorite, and to be honest, sharing this is really the only reason I wanted to even make this post!

Canon 6D | ISO 200 | 50mm | f/6.3 | 1/100 sec
Lit with one AlienBees B400, bounced into umbrella at camera left

Of course, what really helped was how Laura’s fantastic expression and pose worked so well with the angle of the light. I hope you (and Laura!) like it as much as I do :-)

Cherry Blossom


Two posts in one week! Just wanted to take a moment to share this lovely cherry blossom I spotted while out for a photowalk earlier this week. The sky and the flower had such beautiful, complimentary colors. Also pretty pleased that I managed to get solid focus even at an f/2.8 when close-up and outdoors. No easy task!

Canon 6D | ISO 100 | 100mm | f/2.8 | 1/400 sec

Dusting off the cobwebs…


Once again, I’ve gone far too long without updating the blog! As it turns out, while I’m constantly creating new photos and posting them to Flickr, I’m terrible about adding new blog posts. And it’s about time to get better about that. While I don’t see myself adding new posts here daily, I can certainly do more than what I’ve been doing lately!

To kick things off, here’s a photo I created recently that I rather liked. Where I live the weather is usually quite boring, but we’re in our brief rainy season now, which can add some rare moodiness to photos that I really enjoy getting to use.

Loved the moodiness of this tower on a hilltop as the fog rolled in.

Time to stop using GoDaddy?


Got some interesting emails this morning. One was from Jetpack (an add-on service that provides a lot of great extra features for WordPress) telling me that it noticed the site was not responding. The other was from GoDaddy excitedly explaining that my hosting account was updated and now had a new IP.

Hmm… Coincidence that the IP was changed and the site no longer responded? I think not…

Fortunately, I was still able to connect to the database and access all of the WordPress files manually. After a frustrating hour or so of poking around, I managed to discover that the database hostname had changed. An update to the wp-config file to supply the new hostname and all was right with the site again.

This sort of frustrating thing isn’t the first time GoDaddy annoyed me. Once, they went and updated the version of php used on another site I had, which still used some deprecated php code that no longer worked with the new version. That was an even more frustrating problem to figure out, since there was no info whatsoever that the change had been made. At least this time, there was a clue that a change on their end could have been responsible and helped point me in the right direction.

I think that in this latest scenario, perhaps I’ve got my WordPress installed in a somewhat non-standard way for GoDaddy? (I can’t imagine they would have had a change like this break things for everyone that hosts a WordPress install on their system, but who knows…)

But still… Some advance notice on these sorts of things might be nice?

Still Alive!


Wow! It’s been far too long since posting anything here. I kept meaning to add some new content, but kept putting it off. Amidst the constant work of my day job, this site just hadn’t been a priority at all. But having recently been hit in a major layoff has freed up some time (how’s that for a silver lining?) Now I’m taking the chance to get caught up on a lot of photography projects, housework, reading, and video games before deciding what to do next, as well as figuring out how I’d like to handle this site for the future. I certainly know I want to keep it around, but also that doing constant blogging isn’t something I’m super interested in. Nor is this a great place for my daily photo project (that’s still handled on Flickr.)

In any case, it’s been nice to at least get logged back in, apply some patches, and write a new post!

And here’s a recent photograph for good measure:

On a recent trip to Hanford, CA for Thanksgiving, we met the “midnight rooster”. So called because he would start crowing at midnight. It was very annoying…

the moon – in and out of focus


Here’s a photo (or should I say, two photos) I took a few weeks ago as part of my photo-a-day project, that stuck with me as being a particular favorite. I had set out to get a shot of the moon, knowing full well that even with my best zoom lens, the moon would still be fairly tiny and require a decent amount of cropping. But in the process of taking that photo, I took a few where the zoom completely failed to lock correctly and the moon was just a giant, out-of-focus blob.

But by combining that error along with the originally desired sharp image, I was able to take something that would have been so mundane as to barely capture my own attention (even though it was my photo), and transform it into something I felt was far more intriguing.

Something about it also reminds me of 2001: A Space Odyssey, which is a particular favorite of mine, so perhaps that helps me like it more as well.

Photo-a-Day: Year 7, Day 213 – Total Days: 2,404

the moon – in and out of focus
Photo-a-Day: Year 7, Day 213 – Total Days: 2,404
August 1st, 2015

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