Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Valuless Plant?

We see these weeds in quite a few spots these days. For some reason they don't look like a weed to me. The dictionary calls a weed a valueless plant. I think that's kind of harsh for this one.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Above the Fog

This is a view further up the Oregon coast from the last couple of days. This is looking south from the coast road near the top of Neah-Kah-Nie Mountain towards the entrance to Tillamook Bay. It's beyond the little slice of land showing through the fog by itself in the center.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Sea Lion Rest Stop

While on the bluff where yesterday's photo was taken I noticed this scene below the cliff.  These Sea Lions were enjoying what was left of the afternoon sun. A few days into summer and already lounging in the sun on the Oregon coast. 

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Keeper's House

This is the keeper's house for Heceta Head Lighthouse on the central Oregon coast.  The fog was rolling in on Thursday afternoon which made the lighthouse not visible and the keeper's house barely visible.  Both of these structures are probably two of the most photographed landmarks on the Oregon coast.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Covered Bridge

Wednesday morning I left on the motorcycle for a three-day road trip in the sales territory. I consider it a blessing to travel that way and see God's wonderful work. I like bridges and especially covered ones. This is Sandy Creek bridge built in 1921. I wonder how many early automobiles and horse-drawn buggies have crossed over this one.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Oregon Wildflowers

Another view of the wildflowers at the end of the runway at Portland International Airport.

Check out other images at The Weekend in Black & White

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Sea Legs

(Garibaldi Pier - Tillamook Bay, OR)

I seem to be drawn to this pier. I've posted a few photos of it and here's one more. I'm waiting for the just the right sunset to hit it on this side though. Returning to favorite spots for the right lighting can be both challenging and fun. 

Wednesday, June 23, 2010


This was our youngest grandson awaiting the birth of his new sister almost two years ago. I didn't have a recent photo to post so I was looking through some old ones and was moved by this one. It recorded a special morning for us. Recording the events in our lives is one of the wonderful benefits with photography.

Monday, June 21, 2010

City Park Silhouette

(Alton Baker City Park - Eugene, OR)

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Father & Son

(Our son and youngest grandson)


Saturday, June 19, 2010

Airport Wildflowers

I picked up my wife, Amber, at the Portland airport yesterday morning. Very close to the airport is an Embassy Suites Hotel where I usually park and wait until she calls to say they've landed. As I turned into Embassy's lot I noticed a field of wildflowers. These look like they're from the poppy family. It's interesting to think that this small part of life still goes on below commercial airliners making their approach for landing.

Isn't God's creation wonderful?!!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Drama in the Front Yard

The last couple of days I've been battling a cold so I've been working from home. I got the idea to take the screen off of our front bathroom window and use it as a photo blind to get some shots of our birds. Yesterday afternoon a bird-fight broke out amongst some Starlings.

It got a little intense at one point.  Apparently they don't like to share.

Not everyone was caught up in the foray.

This guy actually looks board.

I've learned some things in the last few days while trying to capture photos of these birds.
  1. Shoot in AV mode.  I usually shoot in manual mode but with AV there's far less to be concerned about.  
  2. Things happen fast so use at least the minimum shutter speed matched to the focal length of the lens.
  3. While photographing birds in RAW+JPEG, a 2 GB card fills up pretty fast.
  4. I deleted a lot of photos from this shoot. (I think I took too many.)
  5. Use manual focus instead of auto. This allows for better composition. Also the auto focus makes too much noise.
  6. Speaking of noise... don't let your big curious Bullmastiff walk in behind you while in your photo blind. She can be noisy.
I'd really like to hear your suggestions!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Big Leaf Design

We have this Hosta in our front yard. Actually it's in a galvanized planter box and inserted in one of our basement window wells. I thought the lines on the big leaves would make an interesting monochrome.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Intriguing Building

I usually pass by this building in a small town in the sticks every Friday late in the afternoon. For some reason I'm intrigued by it. The different doors, the twin outdoor speakers, the cracks in the blocks and the dingy lower section give it a slight amount character. I wonder what it was in it's heyday?  And I wonder why two speakers instead of one?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Healing Garden

Most hospitals have a healing garden.  A quiet area with beautiful flowers and shrubs it's a place for prayer, rest, and healing.  Each Monday I walk through the healing garden on my way to the facilities department at one of Portland's major medical centers. Yesterday I took a couple of photos.  My wife is out of town on business so I don't have my plant expert on hand. I don't know what these are but God sure made them pretty!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Front Yard Birds

We recently hung a couple of suet feeders in the front yard and have been getting quit a bit of "business".  Last evening I was in the front reading and began to study the bird activity.  It was interesting to watch how they cautiously move in to the feeder.  The photo of the chickadee above is not as sharp as I'd like but I'm in the beginning stages of learning bird photography.  It's inspiring to visit the blogs of photographers who do bird images.

Towhees are one of my favorites!

This hummingbird stopped for a break to catch his breath.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Don't Rain on my Parade!

This photo gives the impression that in Oregon we sometimes make our own rain.  I was looking through some older photos last night and thought I would post these from July 4th a couple of years ago. Since the holiday is coming in only a couple of weeks, it was fun to look back at some past photos.  This is the annual small-town parade in Rockaway at the coast.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Parking Lot Light Grid

(Thursday afternoon - Northwest Portland)

Friday, June 11, 2010

Timberline Photocopy

Morning lake reflection near the North Oregon coast.

Checkout other Monochrome Weekend images.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

A Small Slice of Americana

One more photo from the weekend at the coast.  After I found the ice cream I passed by this Saturday night event which probably happens in thousands of small towns around the country. The room was packed as were all the nearby parking spots.  It was a quaint scene of fellowship and old fashioned entertainment; a small slice of Americana.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Tillamook Bay Evening

Saturday night while at the coast my wife Amber and our daughter Sara wanted ice cream so I was sent off on a mission.  It was just after 9:00 and most everything was closed so my work was cut out for me.  I brought the camera and took a couple of snapshots.  I found ice cream too.

(Garibaldi Pier - Tillamook Bay)

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Dos Rocas

Friday night after my wife and I arrived at the coast we decided to have dinner at a small Mexican restaurant in the heart of Rockaway Beach.  It's called Dos Rocas, which means the two rocks.  Just off shore are two big rocks that crop out of the water called Twin Rocks, thus the name Dos Rocas.

The sun was low on the horizon and shining through the front of the restaurant.  I thought the shadow on the wall was interesting.  Despite the fact that you don't see anyone else in the place the food was great and the portions were big. We walked out of there feeling like Dos Rocas!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Lake House

We were at the coast again this weekend. This shot was taken Saturday morning looking west on Smith Lake south of Rockaway Beach. After I got out of the car to take some photos a frog started croaking in the foreground. Soon another one started, then another and within a few minutes about four of them treated me to a concert.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

X's in the Sky

(Sauvie Island Bridge just west of Portland)

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Friday, June 4, 2010

Fruit of the Vine

I pass by this vineyard outside of Rickreall, Oregon once a month.  It has many faces depending on the time of year, position of the sun and the weather.  I've not stopped in the past to take photos but decided to yesterday afternoon.

The grapes look immature at this point but that will hopefully change soon. Last month was one of the wettest months of May we've had on record.  The forecast for June looks wet too. Hopefully the vineyards will get some warm dry weather soon.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Converging Lines

While walking into the Portland VA Hospital yesterday I looked down this opening between two parking structures.  The converging lines and blocks of shade caught my attention.

I'm not sure which version is best.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Ever Feel Overwhelmed with Busyness?

Sometimes the busyness of life can feel overwhelming.  Too much work and not enough time.  Just the communication technology alone that we have demands a certain amount of our time each day.  Add to that the hours for family, work, to-do lists, and it can feel like there isn't time for just relaxing.

The reality is, work always gets done in due time.  Family time, though, slips away too fast and we don't get those moments back. Taking regular time to relax and to especially be with family is important.  So important it should be a priority.

At times we're busy like a bee.  And we're so focused on the work we can miss the fact that we're surrounded with flowers.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Now She Knows Why Dogs Like to do This!

I hope this isn't cheating but I didn't take this photo.  Our oldest granddaughter took this of her sister using my wife's cell phone camera.