Thursday, December 30, 2010

Chocolate mice!

I just though this was so clever! These are some Christmas treats that one of our clients sent to us.
 They are chocolate mice made from maraschino cherries and almond slices. I'm not sure what she used for the red eyes, but the whole concept is just great!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Up and running!!!

Finally got the computer back with a new hard drive! ...quite zippy!!

F-troop back to normal sir!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Computer hum-drums...

came into the office in Dallas yesterday and my computer wouldn't boot up, "unable to locate 'such and such' Windows file..."

 ...called the computer guy and he had to take it with him to work on it at his office.

 Spent most of the day yesterday setting up the server to function as a temporary work station and managed to get some real work done by late afternoon.

 This morning, I'm waiting for the computer guy to return with my box. I think he was able to "fix" it, but due to age, it was originally purchased in 2004, it may be time to replace it.

 I'm just glad I backed up all my photos off of it last Friday afternoon. Lesson there folks, back-up your computers!!!!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Birds of paradise...

As usual, the end of the week makes me want to run off to the tropics.
 So for today's pics I have chosen 2 of my favorite "birds of paradise".

First up is Lorenzo the green parrot that oversees all the proceedings at Coconut's Bar on Cozumel.
Not real sure what he's trying to do here...
...and to show no favoritism, here is a pic of my buddy Chimichanga.
Chimi is the absolutely beautiful Cockatoo that is also one of the Coconut's menagerie
that also includes, but not limited to, a camellion, a couple of dogs, chickens, turtles and the occasional iguana.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Happy Holidays from Casa Sharky!!!...

...well this one of the first shots taken with the new 11-16mm f/2.8 wide angle lens...Oh, yeah, this is going to work out very nicely, thank you.

This is a full frame shot, no cropping involved...notice no "fish eye" rounded corners, like you get with lesser lenses.

I'm going to try and get this thing outside and see what I can do with landscapes...

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

NEW TOYS!!!

Christmas came early this year, or my birthday came late...one of the 2, or more like a combination of both.

I finally got a decent tripod, I purchased an "Induro" tripod from my buddy Don, down at Don's New and Used Photo Equipment down on Riverside, (formerly Industrial Blvd.), in Dallas.

 Then, after lots and lots research, I finally purchased a super wide angle lens for shooting interiors. The Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 super wide fit the bill exactly. Very high ratings for a DX format lens and the price wasn't bad at around $600 vs. $2000 for a comparable full format lens.

 Finally, comes the 'Hoodman' Loop, a hood device made to go over the LED screen on your camera so when you are outdoors in the sun you can put it over the display and actually see your photos! It comes with a vision adjustment for us folks with "old eyes" who need readers...almost a must for anyone shooting outdoors on a regular basis and wanting to verify their exposure.

 The latter 2 items I purchase from pal and photography instructor Barry Baker at Arlington Camera. Located on Randol Mill Rd. in Arlington, Texas.

 New photos to come...

Thursday, December 9, 2010

"Cozumel, Below" available for stocking stuffers...

Still looking for the perfect gift for the ocean lover on your list?

"Cozumel, Below" the book is available at http://www.blurb.com/ Over 140 full color, high quality photographs of the flora and fauna of the world's second largest reef system.

 Also available at http://www.lulu.com/ are 2011 "Cozumel, Below" calendars. 12 months of Caribbean color!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Coconut's...

Dreaming of a lazy afternoon at my favorite beach bar...Coconut's on the Caribbean side or the "wild side" of Cozumel, Mexico.  Dos fish burgers and margaritas, por favor!!!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Cozumel Sunset...

...thought I'd end the week with a Cozumel sunset. Taken at my Cozumel vacation home, Blue Angel Resort...let's mix up some margaritas!!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Texas Discovery Gardens...

...at Fair Park, Dallas.
This is the front of the newly remodeled Butterfly house and insectarium...come by and see some bugs!!!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Pic of the day...Stripped pajamas...

From the wildlife collection, this zebra close-up taken at the Fossil Rim Wildlife Center near Glen Rose, Texas...

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Peek a boo Gray Angel...

One of my favorite shots for Cozumel, taken in May of 2005. We came accross 2 large Gray Angelfish hanging out in some large soft coral branches. After taking a shot of the 2 of them I eased up to make this close-up of the one deepest into the coral branches...

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Dallas Hotel...

So I'm Driving home from work the other day and I notice the sun setting behind the new Dallas Omni Convention Center hotel being erected in downtown Dallas...PHOTO OP!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Pic of the day...The Thinker...

This is a shot of one of the chimps at the Dallas Zoo.
I wish I could get people to post this well!!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Pic of the day!...

Living room of a private residence in Dallas, Texas. This was a home that we took down to the studs, reworked walls and completely renovated. Including many custom made furniture items, such as the sofa and arm chairs seen here...

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Follow the leader...

Divers play follow the leader as they pass by a large Barrel Sponge at Columbia Deep dive site, Cozumel, Mexico...

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Wildlife pic of the day...

Close up of a Bongo antelope at Fossil Rim Wildlife Center, near Glen Rose, Texas...

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Who says midday is a bad time to shoot?...

All the photo experts will tell you to get up early, shoot unitl 10 a.m. or so, eat some lunch and take a nap until around 2 p.m. and start shooting again in the late afternoon light.
 Well, here's one to throw that theory out the window...a midday shot of a fire escape in downtown Dallas.
This photo is in color, although the only evidence of it is the rust on the stairway. 

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Today's pic...

Fun with DART! Time laps is a fun thing to work with, I took this night shot of Baylor Hospital with a DART "Green line" comuter train passing in the foreground. I love that I was able to also pick up the cross arms coming down as the train approached....

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Pic of the day!...

Ok, maybe I should call it "pic of TODAY", as I may not get one up everyday due to actually getting some work done :)..

...anywho, here's today's offering. Cowboy's Staduim in Arlington, Texas...

Monday, November 1, 2010

Pic of the day!...

A new feature, "Pic of the Day!"...

Let's get it started with a shot I made of the new Dallas Winspear Opera House at the att Performing Arts Center in downtown Dallas...

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Alive and well...

...ok, I survied diverticulitis...for now...watching what I eat and trying to get back to the gym a.s.a.p.

 So, I'm back to work and ready to start shooting again.

 Will post some current shots when I can come up for air from the drafting department. We stared a new project, a nearly 11,000 square foot new construction home in Big D.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Starting 50 with a bang...or more of a pain!

So on September 28th they tell me I turned 50. A friend said not to worry, "50 is the new 50"...thanks for the encouragement!

 At 1:30 in the morning on Sept. 29th I awoke to a sharp pain in my left side. I got out of bed and couldn't stand straight from the pain. I managed to make through the night, but the severe pain persisted and my wife took me to the doctor the next morning.

 After a brief exam he said it sounded like Diverticulitis, a condition where a weak spot develops in the colon and that spot gets infected...a simple explanation. Being life-long scuba diver, the irony of the conditions name didn't escape me, nor the many diver friends I have.

 He sent me to the hospital to have a CAT scan to confirm his suspicions and after spending the majority of the day in the emergency waiting room, I finally had the scan and yes, the diagnosis was correct...of course, Dr. Williams is the best!

 If things are bad enough, they will have to do surgery to remove the damaged area of the colon, fortunately for me, it appears I may be avoiding that and will be sent home sometime tomorrow.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Sunsets

Here are a few sunsets I've pulled out of the 'ol library, some taken here in Texas, most in my vacation home of Cozumel, Mexico and an odd ball from Missouri...

Sunset over Grand Prairie, Texas from Cedar Hill Park

Blue Angel Resort, (formerly Caribe Blu)
 Cozumel, Mexico

"Leap frog" statue on Ave. Milgar,
Cozumel, Mexico

My favorite Cozumel sunset pic. Shot at Blue Angel Resort
The stingray ecounter pen pilons lead the eye right to the sunset
and I like the dive shower in the forground.

Punta Sur (South Point),
Cozumel, Mexico

not your typical sunset shot, but still one of my fav's from the
main harbor on Cozumel, Mexico

Cozumel Sunset

Golden City, Missouri sunset

Cedar Hill Park sunset

The "divers" statue on the Ave. Milgar,
Cozumel, Mexico

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Just for the fun of it...Things I am or have been...

 Christian, son, grandson, husband, brother, student, artist, draftsman, designer, photographer, cowboy, volunteer, educator, usher, bus boy, dishwasher, physical trainer, carpet cleaner, bartender, bouncer, cook, disc jockey (club and radio), sailor, radioman, salesman, mechanic, bill poster, printer, diver, electronics technician; underwater guide, photographer, construction & salvage worker; secretary/treasurer, typewriter cleaner, jack-of-all-trades maintenance man, driver, delivery person, IT semi-specialist…

...and that’s just the first 50 years!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Underwater...

So I've been meaning to post some underwater pics...I rummaged through my libraries and came up with a few fav's to share...all shots were taken on the reefs of Cozumel, Mexico...
Branch coral at Palancar Horseshoe. This is a personal favorite, I don't get a lot of "oo's and ahh's" off of it, but I really like the texture of the coral against the black background.

I shot this small grouper at Palancar Bricks. I love the way I was able to get the fish's head in focus, but still captured the motion of his tail as he zipped past me.

This Yellow Spotted Moray eel just seemed to be posing for me at Palancar Gardens.

Brittle Sea Star on red sponge at Villablanca Shallows.

This pic of an anemone is right out of the camera, no Photoshop involved.
 I like it because the colors are a little unusual for most reef shots of Coz, somewhat muted.

Probably my favorite lobster shot I've taken through the years. This guy was HUGE and seemed to have no fear. I swam up to him and stuck my camera out to focus. Instead of moving back into his cubby hole like they usually do, this one started walking towards me! and "embraced" me with it's antennas.

Bandid Coral Shrimp can be found all over the reefs. I captured these little bugs hanging out in this sponge. The antenna and colors kind of give it a fireworks like feel to the photo.
Super close up of a small Nurse Shark.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Light & Lighting I

Just finishing up my first Light and Lighting class here are a few images.

 For the first assignment we had to show various examples of simple light; i.e. soft, hard & back light. So naturally I headed down to my favorite training ground, State Fair Park in Dallas...
back lit flower with bumble bee...

soft lit dragon fly...

this little guy was less than 2" long. soft lit lizard on leaf...
GEICO Ad, "Looking for a good deal on auto insurance?"


Assignment 2 took us on an pre-dawn (yawn), field trip to downtown Ft. Worth, Texas...
it was actually quite despite the early hour...

Sundance Square at sunrise...a sign outside he 8.0 bar looking to the west...


Christ statue in early morning light...

Naturally, I ended up back at Fair Park and got this shot at the Women's Museum at midday...

A second midday shot. I saw this fire escape while driving down the street near downtown Dallas...it was just begging to be photographed. This pic is actually in color, but between the harsh sun and the building & fire escape being painted gray, the only color that you see is some rust on the stairway...

late a afternoon light at a cemetery on Hall street in Dallas...

 
Then it was time to move inside for some white balance work and indoor photography...

Interior shot of my boss's house, mixed incandescent and sunlight...

another mixed light shot of one of our client's houses in Dallas...


Finally we moved into some studio work.
First up was small studio lighting, "product shots"...

Hey, the teach brought it in!...


These next three were shot at my office in Dallas, using some butcher paper as a backdrop and a fluorescent desk lamp as a light source...

one of my favorite treats...

anyone that knows me, knows I usually have one of these in hand, so taking a product shot of one just came natural...



my favorite shot of the group...


Then last week we went to a professional studio and I got my first taste of full on studio portrait photography...gonna have to keep these shots for future reference...

We all took turns being model and photographer, this is one of my classmates that got volunteered to be my model...short light, subject's nose is pointed towards the light source...

Broad/Rembrandt light, subject is facing away from light source. The small triangle of light under the left eye makes it "Rembrandt" light...

Finally, a fuller shot, again Broad/Rembrandt lighting...

I really enjoyed this class. So far most of the classes I've taken at UTA have been at least 80% review and 20% new knowledge. This class was more the other way around.
 Rhonda Hole, http://rhondaholephotography.com/ , the instructor, is a wonderful photographer and a super teacher. Very enthusiastic and willing to pass on her many years of experience.