The Way I See It

Archive for the ‘landscapes’ Category

The Cloud

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Puget Sound from Carkeek Creek, 2013

Puget Sound from Carkeek Creek, 2013

From the middle of the creek. Thank goodness for insulated, waterproof boots. 😉

1/15 second at f/8, ISO 100. Nikon D800E + Nikkor AF-S 16-35mm f/4.

 

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Written by xinapray

March 2, 2013 at 5:00 pm

Dusk on a Rainy Day

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Puget Sound from Magnolia, 2013

Puget Sound from Magnolia, 2013

It has been one of those typical Seattle winter days. Liquid sunshine had come down all day long, sometimes pelting, sometimes a mere mist. Then, just before sundown, it cleared. I got about 20 minutes to make some images before it started again.

4/5 second at f/13, ISO 640. Nikon D800E + Nikkor AF-S 24-120mm f/4.

Written by xinapray

February 2, 2013 at 5:37 pm

Yesterday’s Dusk

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Carkeek Fisherman, Seattle, 2012

Carkeek Fisherman, Seattle, 2012

1/40 second at f/11, ISO 400. Sony NEX-7 + E 55-210mm OSS.
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Written by xinapray

July 20, 2012 at 5:54 pm

Where the Earth Meets the Ocean

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Ebey's Landing Afternoon, 2012

Ebey's Landing Afternoon, 2012

Last week, my friend Sai and I took a drive up Whidbey Island, a great look-see and photo-snapping adventure. I made these images at Ebey’s Landing, one of my favorite places around here.

Photo Notes
These images were made with my infrared-converted point-and-shoot. In processing, I converted them to monochrome, then added a bit of silver toning to simulate the look of real photo file/paper.

Ebey's Landing Driftwood, 2012

Ebey's Landing Driftwood, 2012

 

Sunrise in the City

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Kerry Park, 20120205

Kerry Park, 20120205

It’s been a sunny, warm, weekend. I have some gear that I’ve been testing so I got up early yesterday (Saturday) and went over to Kerry Park on Queen Anne Hill, to the quintessential “sunrise over Seattle” viewpoint. Got there with plenty of time to spare, picked my spot, and set things up. “Uh-oh,” I thought to myself as the sky began to lighten. On the horizon hung a thin band of thick clouds. They lessened as one glanced upwards and finally petered out at 30-35 degrees from horizontal. Clear blue sky overhead at Kerry Park and over most of Seattle but where it mattered most, the vital first rays of the new day would likely be completely obscured. I hung around nonetheless, hoping that a break would form. 7:08 a.m. came and went. Still only dull grays and blues. Oh well. At least I got in a nice chat with a gentleman named Craig, who was visiting from Oregon. “I’ll probably be here again tomorrow” said he. “So will I, most likely” I replied.

This morning rolled around. I’d gotten up a bit late and hurried over there. “Morning” said he. “Good morning.” He pointed towards the horizon with his chin. “Doesn’t look good.” I concurred. Again we hung out, chatting about photography and life, hoping but not uttering the hope that somehow, good fortune would intercede. Not on this morning. We bid our adieus. As I drove home, I thought about how fortunate I was to be a sunset photographer. Before deciding to head out, I have the luxury of seeing the Western sky (from whence most Seattle weather originates) out my front window. From the city, there is a live webcam that I also check. Finally, there are the doppler radar readings. Sunrise photographers have almost none of these luxuries. They have to be ready before the first light hits the skies. They are essentially at the mercy of whatever that light reveals. I wondered if I could ever make sunrise photo shoots a regular habit.

And what of the image? It is from a more fortuitous outing not long ago. That’s the Space Needle and downtown Seattle in the foreground. In the back rises a snow-clad Mount Rainier.

I rationalize these past two mornings as putting in my time, as payback for the numerous 1-for-1 mornings with which I have been blessed. Or perhaps they are a deposit paid on some future jaw-dropping sunrise. 😉

Photo Notes
f/8, 1/15 second at ISO 200. For this image, I decided to expose for the liveliness in the sky, while leaving the structured forms of the buildings in near-silhouette. This image is very much what came out of the camera…I only applied a bit of tone mapping to accurately reflect the variety of colors that I witnessed that morning.

 

Written by xinapray

March 25, 2012 at 6:54 pm

Sunset, 20120304

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untitled

untitled

One of my favorite activities is catching sunset by the water. It allows me to decompress and recharge; a gorgeous blue hour keeps me in good spirits for days. But the confluence of weather and work this winter has offered me relatively few opportunities to participate in this favorite activity.

Sunday evening brought the potential to make a few frames. I arrived with lots of time to spare but as the big orange orb edged it’s way towards the horizon, the anxiety began to build. It used to feel like I ran through each sunset shoot as if on autopilot. But today, I struggled with composition and finding the right technical settings. And as quickly as the sun was racing past the horizon, so my window of opportunity was closing. I hurried through several frames. This is one of the images that I was able to capture. Shooting seascapes is about relaxing and making a good memory. On this day, it felt like just really hard work. 😉

Photog Notes
f/13, 1/4 second at ISO 200. To help tame the dynamic range, I applied a 2-stop hard-edged graduated neutral density filter when I made the exposure. But the histogram and on-screen blinkies confirmed that I still had blown highlights (where the sun had just dropped below the horizon and in the clouds directly above), so I snapped an exposure just for those areas and manually blended them into the overall image.

Written by xinapray

March 10, 2012 at 4:30 pm

Prelude

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Lindera obtusiloba

Lindera obtusiloba

It has been a really mild winter. I’ve been seeing signs of the trees coming to life and decided to stop in at the arboretum to take a look around. I made this image under a Japanese Spicebush or Lindera obtusiloba. A mature specimen that may actually have seen more days than I, it is one of my favorites of the collection. I’ve spent many a spring or autumn afternoon under it’s brilliant foliage, absorbing the magnificence of the sea of yellows and greens, and bathing in the spicy-sweet fragrance. On this day, it was just awakening from it’s winter slumber.

Photog Notes
f/11, 1/10 second at ISO 400. I shot this on a relatively calm afternoon but these shoots were so thin and delicate that even if I moved a little too quickly, the air would stir just enough that the camera was able to pick up the slight movement. I thus chose to shoot at a higher ISO than I’d have preferred, and underexposed a teeny bit to get a usable shutter speed. In processing, I bumped up the exposure ⅓ stop, and applied a bit of selective dodging and burning.

 

Written by xinapray

February 26, 2012 at 6:14 pm

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