Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Bevo sniff

Bevo, red point siamese cat sniffing the camera - HDR

This here is Bevo, our other cat. He is a curious red point Siamese.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Who, through long days of labor, And nights devoid of ease, Still heard in his soul the music Of wonderful melodies

Sunset at White lake in Cullinan Park near Houston and Sugar Land Texas - HDR Panoramic

Went back to White lake a few weeks ago to attempt a sunset time lapse but I forgot my intervalometer. So I decided to just take some of the usual shots. I got this pano in while I was there and it turned out better then I thought it would. This pano is roughly 100 degrees.

Did you know that...

   The colors of the sunset result from a phenomenon called scattering, molecules and small particles in the atmosphere change the direction of light rays, causing them to scatter. Scattering affects the color of light coming from the sky, but the details are determined by the wavelength of the light and the size of the particle. The short-wavelength blue and violet are scattered by molecules in the air much more than other colors of the spectrum. This is why blue and violet light reaches our eyes from all directions on a clear day. But because we can’t see violet very well, the sky appears blue.
   Scattering also explains the colors of the sunrise and sunset. Because the sun is low on the horizon, sunlight passes through more air at sunset and sunrise than during the day, when the sun is higher in the sky. More atmosphere means more molecules to scatter the violet and blue light away from your eyes. If the path is long enough, all of the blue and violet light scatters out of your line of sight. The other colors continue on their way to your eyes. This is why sunsets are often yellow, orange, and red. And because red has the longest wavelength of any visible light, the sun is red when it’s on the horizon, where its extremely long path through the atmosphere blocks all other colors.

Now you know...

The title quote is from "The Day is Done" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

The voice of an old intelligence which in another age and climate had pondered and thus disposed of the same questions which exercise us.

HDR photo of BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir - Houston at sunset- in Stafford, Texas

This beautiful place is conveniently located just down the road from my home. I wanted to photograph it for some time but I thought they didn't allow photography on the premises. Turns out they're fine with it out side of the temple its self. 

This is the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, a mandir, or Hindu temple, in Stafford, Texas. It was the first traditional mandir of stone and marble to be constructed in the United States.

The mandir was created entirely according to ancient Hindu architectural manuscripts known as the Shilpa Shastras, but also meets all modern regulations. Opened on July 25, 2004, by Pramukh Swami Maharaj, the present spiritual guru of Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS), it was constructed in 16 months starting from the day its first stone was laid.

The 25,620 sq ft mandir is constructed entirely of marble from Italy and limestone from Turkey. There is no iron or steel anywhere in the structure. The stone that makes up the temple was shipped to India where it was hand-carved with traditional Vedic deities and motifs. Approximately 33,000 individually marked pieces were then shipped to Houston and assembled like a giant three-dimensional jigsaw.

The mandir was created by BAPS, an international Hindu organisation belonging to the Swaminarayan faith of Hinduism.

Title quote from The Journals and Miscellaneous Notebooks of Ralph Waldo Emerson, vol. x, p. 360, on the Bhagavat Geeta

Monday, May 20, 2013


Took this one a few weeks ago with  the G15. I like using the G15 for indoor shots because its lens goes up to f/1.8, which is much faster then my current 5D lenses.

This is Tink, taking a nap under the coffee table. If she's not up and about, you can usually find here here.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Let us build us a city, and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven...

I took this the same night I took the Houston Panorama. I was fascinated by the orange glow of the  JPMorgan Chase Building, so I stowed my 24-105mm and whipped out the 70-300mm for a close-up shot before I left.

JPMorgan Chase Building is a 37-story 130 m (430 ft) Art Deco skyscraper in downtown Houston, Texas. Completed in 1929, it remained the tallest building in Houston until 1963, when the Exxon Building surpassed it in height. The building is the Houston headquarters of JPMorgan Chase Bank, and was formerly the headquarters of Texas Commerce Bank.

The title quote is from the Book of Genesis, 11 verse 4, concerning the tower of Babel.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

For the Birds

Here we have a couple Black-bellied whistling-ducks enjoying the scenery at Hermann Park in the Museum District of Houston.

They breed from the southernmost United States and tropical Central to south-central South America. In the USA, it can be found year-round in parts of southeast Texas and are some times known to vacation in southeast Arizona and along the Louisiana gulf coast.

More from Hermann Park

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Water drops

These are a couple of my first attempts at reverse lens macro photography. Just some droplets of water on a CD surface.

Monday, May 13, 2013

The object of Art is to give life a shape

Bryan wraps up the street art that him and Wiley worked on that day at an old gas station across from Station Museum of Contemporary Art in Downtown Houston, Texas.

This is in preparation for a street art exhibit at the museum on May the 25th, 2013.

This photo may look like it was taken with a extreme wide angle lens but it was in fact taken with my usual 24-105mm set at 24.

It is another stitch made up of 12 or so portraits. I panned across the top for about 6 shots and then across the bottom for the same.

I had intended to straighten out the distortion but when I did, the photo took on a bow-tie shape so I left it in. I don't generally like the fish-eye look but for this scene I think it looks pretty good.

I finally learned a good sharpening technique using a duplicate layer with a high-pass filter in use which I learned with the help of a fellow photographer's blog:

Title quote from "The Rehearsal" by Jean Anouilh.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Night on the town

Here we have a panoramic photo of Down town Houston. It's roughly 180 degrees. Made up of 12 portrait HDR shots. To see it in all its glory click here:

I got lucky that the Astros were playing that night, adds something to the scene I think. I had mad this trip to get some sunset shots with the Houston skyline but I didn't leave the house early enough.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Light seeking light doth light of light beguile

This was my first attempt at photo stacking and layer masks in Photoshop. The light trails and road is 17 long exposure photos stacked. The sky and everything else is a single photo that I layered in after the stacking. 

I was up there attempting to get a shot of Comet PANSTARRS, but nothing turned up. But it turned into a pretty decent sunset while I was up there.

Shot from the top parking deck at Town Center in Sugar Land, Texas.

The title quote is from "Love's Labor's Lost", Act 1. scene 1, 72–79 
By William Shakespeare 

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Baby False-Map Turtle

I've been playing around with the reversed lens technique. To accomplish this I hold a lens backwards up to the camera body. There are adapters that will free up a hand for for focusing, I plan to buy one one of these days.

You focus by moving closer to and further away from the subject, it's very tricky stuff. Since the depth of field is only about a millimeter, you have to maneuver around to get the photo just right.

About a week ago we had an incredible rain storm. I haven't had much time for photography lately and I thought I'd get out and check things out, see if there was some interesting scene. I nearly step on this little guy trying to escape the rain. I brought him in out of the mess. He obviously didn't like all the attention, because after this shot he wouldn't stay put, so I took him back outside.

This guy, I'm pretty sure, is a false-map turtle. His shell had a pronounced ridges down the middle and a serrated edge. His face and neck had bright orange stripes.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Winged Victory of Samothrace

Back from a bit of a break from blogging, decided to put it aside while I focused on school. 

I recently dropped my old iPhone 3G for the thousandth time and finally cracked the screen so I picked up a new SIII. I was going through the old photos on there and doing some interesting but simple editing in Picasa. 

This is a mobile shot I took of the Winged Victory of Samothracealso referred to as Nike of Samothrace, at the Louvre Museum in Paris, France. 

It is a 2nd century BC marble sculpture of the Greek goddess Nike (Victory). Since 1884, it has been prominently displayed at the Louvre. 

The Nike of Samothrace, discovered in 1863 on the island of Samothrace (in Greek, Σαμοθρακη — Samothraki), is estimated to have been created around 190 BC. It was created to not only honor the goddess, Nike, but to honor a sea battle. It conveys a sense of action and triumph as well as portraying artful flowing drapery through its features which the Greeks considered ideal beauty. 

The sculptor is unknown.