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Macro

13 Mar

Flower from Santana Row

I like my new macro lens for my iPhone.  I like it a lot.  I was amazed at how close to the flower I had to get for the camera to focus but then the results made me all giddy!

New toys!

8 Mar

All the hipster camera peeps would say that they got “new glass” for their birthday but I’m just not that cool!

Still, my cool factor must have shot up by about a billion since my wonderful, thoughtful, loving husband got me these cool lenses for my iPhone!

I know, right? They are from the awesome Photojojo Store!. They are very tricky in how they work. You stick a nifty sticky-back magnetic ring on to your camera and then the lenses just magnetically attach.

I took this picture with the telephoto right away last night.

You can’t use flash so this pic is very grainy. That’s the low light . . . not the lens quality. I’m really excited about the telephoto and the macro but I imagine I’ll find some fun things to do with the wide angle and the fish eye lenses as well.

My iPhone is getting all tricked out for our next Summer adventure. More on that in a future post . . . assuming there are any. Given my track record . . . one never knows!

Link

Proud as pie.

1 Mar

Is pie proud?  Is this an old saying or a figment of my feeble mind?

Anyway . . .

I’m proud as pie because we just did something very cool here at the Miller household.  We got a Groupon for a company called Picture it on Canvas.  You send them your picture (electronically) and they print it on canvas.  And you hang it on your wall . . .

So, we did.

Here is a picture I took two years ago in the Badlands . . .

After the storm, Badlands National Park

“Isn’t it gorgeous?” she queried modestly.

I know it is — it’s okay.  With a scene like that, it would have been hard to shoot it poorly.  I mean, look at that.

Here’s the final result hanging on our dining room wall.  And, just a warning, I was in a hurry . . . why wait for gorgeous daylight when I can hang it in the yellowy glow of the chandelier against the yellow paint of the walls and . . .

Photo printed on canvas

Yea, I’m kind of chuffed about it . . . I think we’ll definitely be ordering another one — inspiration to take more amazing pictures, huh?  My architect is envisioning a triptych over the woodstove on the stone fireplace.

Lightness

24 Feb

Lacy light shivers
Soft whispers flutter through space
Winter doves at home

© 2012, Liza Lee Miller
All rights reserved.

Meep-meep!

20 Feb

After such a long absence from my blog, I’m surprised to find myself compelled to write.  I’m not surprised that what compelled me was birds and photos.  For Christmas this year, my loving husband got me a telephoto lens for my Canon camera.  He was probably tired of hearing me whine about not having a telephoto lens.

This weekend, he didn’t hear any whining, in fact, he got a big, fat kiss on the lips and a great big “thank you for my telephoto lens, honey!” I’m nothing if not grateful!

We went camping in the heart of LA.  Well, it’s the heart of LA if, like me, you feel that LA starts right around the southern edge of Santa Barbara and ends at the northern edge of San Diego!  We camped in San Dimas at a little, bitty lake called Puddingstone Reservoir.  You might think I’m making that up but, I assure you, I’m not.  Puddingstone.

Anyway, despite the location in a county park with a small reservoir, I wasn’t exactly thinking about birding here.  Oh, dopey me!

We hadn’t even gotten breakfast dishes done when Greg came running to the motorhome and said, “Grab your camera . . . it’s a roadrunner!”

Meep-meep!

 

We didn’t see any wiley coyotes in hot pursuit but I kept looking . . .

Soaring in unison

1 Aug

Ravens over Bryce

Soaring over dry
Heated, barren desert air
Learning how to fly

 

ps.  this is my most favorite raven picture I’ve ever taken.  A pair of Ravens was teaching their 3 offspring to fly over Bryce Canyon’s wild hoodoos . . . love it.

Raving about my most viewed photo

30 Jul

Raven Silhouette I

This (not very good) photo of a raven is the most viewed photo in my Flickr photostream.  I thought maybe it’s been seen so much because it was on my 2nd most popular post, The Difference Between Ravens and Crows.  But it’s not.  It’s not my best picture of a raven or my most interesting picture of a raven.  I cannot figure out why it’s been view more than 4,500 times.  Weird.

Taking flight . . .

28 Jul

 . . . photos.

Going through my blog reader this morning, I came across this great article on taking photographs of birds in flight at the American Birding Association blog.  It has some great tips in it about how to get good at this tricky and very satisfying skill.

I have taken more than my fair share of bad flight photos but I’ve been lucky some too.  (As with most photos, Lady Luck is your best advisor!)  My one piece of advice would be that taking flight photos from below the birds usually results in silhouettes – that can be dramatic but isn’t always what you are after.

From Avia

My best advice to add to the article’s tips is to try to be level with the birds — that’s often difficult but you usually get some great shots that way. This pelican was flying along a jetty last summer where the Rogue River comes out to the Pacific in Oregon.  I used the advice (as I usually do) to take the shots in burst mode.  This was my best of the lot.

From Fauna

The advice about wind in the article made me laugh.  This summer when we were at Chaco Culture National Monument in New Mexico, I was birding near the bathrooms — hey, the birds like shade as much as the rest of us and in the desert sometimes buildings provide the best shade.  The birds didn’t want to leave the area but didn’t want me getting too close.  I am handicapped by my lack of a telephoto lens so I was trying to get as close as I could without scaring the birds away.  This one kept jumping down to fly away right into a head wind.  He flew and flew away from me without going anywhere.  The light wasn’t ideal but I got some fun flight shots in a way I never expected.

From Flight Study

To see a series of the bird in flight, click through to my Picasa album, Flight Study. You can then click on the button for the slideshow. It turned out pretty cool, if I do say so myself.

What was the cutest thing YOU saw this summer?

27 Jul
From Fauna

This little cutie-pie was the cutest thing I’ve seen . . . so far at least!  Oh, and I have to give credit where it is due . . . I did not take this picture.  My husband did.  My camera card was full so he snapped a few amazing cute pics on his camera.  We saw this little guy (gal?) hanging out by the side of the road at Mesa Verde National Park.  So special.

Focus on the little things . . .

26 Jul

Blue Damselfly

One of my goals on my trip was to get better at using my new camera.  I love taking Macro shots but was having a little trouble with focusing.  I think I figured it out while shooting one of the hundreds of damselflies at the Pahrangat National Wildlife Area.  I love how the head is in focus and the tail, closer to me, is not.
Wild Rose

I was able to get focused on this wild rose bud in the Eastern Sierra mountains using the same technique . . . and waiting for the breeze to stop moving it wildly.

Flower, Silverton, CO

Sometimes the camera can do it for you but sometimes you need to force it to capture what you want.

Butterfly at Pecos National Monument

And, sometimes you just have to shoot lots and lots of pictures and hope that the breeze, the flittering butterfly, and your camera conspire to get what you were hoping for.

Skill or luck . . . I’ll take the good results whenever I can.

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