Sunday, January 27, 2013

P52 - Week 4 - Animal Tracks

This weeks photography challenge comes from a bright young lad named Jordan (aka son or bud), up in the frigid tundra of Gilford. Well Jordan's most excellent idea for this week was for good 'ol Dad to get some pictures of Animal Tracks. Great! What an awesome idea! One I hadn't tried yet! Good one son!

Ok, now the attaboys are done, and I realize that this is the coldest stretch of winter we have had in 3 years...It's been  between -7 and 6 degree this week around here. It hasn't snowed in a couple of weeks, and the snow on the ground is frozen and not conducive to allowing footprints... Thanks bud. Good suggestion...I owe ya one.. ;-)

We interrupt this Blog cast for this pop quiz: What made these tracks? Answer later on.

And now, back to our regularly scheduled blog.

Anyway, I started my search this week on Wednesday in Manchester. I think it was 7 degrees when I set out at lunch time. I was out for about 20 minutes before my fingers burned and I feared for the safety of my camera. I decided it was not a good idea to be out too long. I did however, find these tracks behind my office (That's the building on the left)...
 Tracks in Tracks

As you'll see with all of these pictures, the ground was too cold, and you can't tell what the animal was that made the tracks.
After that, I didn't get a chance to get out til Saturday morning. I figured I'd get up early before the sun rose and go over to the Tannery Bridge in Gilford. Maybe I'd see a deer or something. And I also wanted to get a shot if the bridge from the frozen river. So with a few layers on my bod and crampons on my boots, I set out.

A must have for trudging in the snow and ice.

Right off the bat, I found foot prints everywhere.

This was probably just a dog. Or Mountain lion. Hard tellin', not knowin,

I followed them down to the river.

The river was mostly frozen. Not sure if the animal fell in or not. But it wasn't there now. Only found a hole.

I very gingerly walked out onto the frozen river.  Boy, crampons are great! I laid down on the ice to get this shot.

It was cool listening to the fast-moving water rush below me, under the ice. Well, Mr. ADD, forgot about animal tracks for awhile, and took a ton of pics of the bridge. I was out for about 1/2 hour in 4 degree weather, until my fingers hurt too bad. I headed back to the car and turned the heat on to defrost my digits.

But before that, I took care of my Canon 60D...Here's a tip for taking your DSLR camera out in the cold of winter: It's fine going out, but coming back into a warm car or house can wreak havoc on the lenses and electronics inside your camera. A good idea is when you are done shooting, put your camera and gear inside a plastic seal tight bag before you get in your car. Keep it away from the heaters (Try the back seat) and allow it to warm up slowly. Then even when you come home, leave it out in a colder room (still in the bag),
for a couple of hours and allow it to warm up gradually. This will prevent condensation from getting inside your gear. Then you should be ok! I'm just wondering if I'll be warmed up by then. BRRR.

I was a bit disappointed at not getting many animal tracks. So I put on my thinking cap, and went to the grocery store.
 Deer Tracks

Moose Tracks
Huh, huh? Clever???

 And now the answer to this weeks pop quiz. What made those tracks?

Caramel Cow Tracks!

So for all my efforts, I found the most tracks right around my yard. If I had waited til the sun came up, I would have noticed.
 Where's this one headed?

 The tracks of some critter living under, (or in) my shed.

 Something big

 Something small

 Something smaller

Something smaller, next to big feet.

And now, to sit and eat my ice cream, and look at the tracks through the window, from the warmth and comfort of my house.

Allright! Week 4 is done! And now I have to get some pictures ready for some other things this week. Tomorrow I'm setting up for a gallery showing at Awakenings Cafe in Gilford. They will be there thru February. Jane Harmon, the owner, asked me if I'd like to have another showing. They went over very well last summer. So, I said absolutely!
So if you're in the area, get on over to Awakenings and have some coffee or freshly baked breakfast treats, and see some of my new stuff.
And I am considering joining NHPPA (New Hampshire Professional Photographers Association), and need to put a portfolio together. I went to their meeting last month, and really enjoyed it. A great bunch of people there.

So next week? What's my assignment? Let me know ASAP!
Have a great week!

Monday, January 21, 2013

P52 - Week 3...For the Birds

This week's assignment was suggested by my Mom, Deb. She suggested I take pics of decorative birds that Sue and I have scattered around our house. We either bought these birds when we were out visiting my sister-in-law Terry in Holland Michigan (a beautiful place by the way), or they were gifts from Terry.
We interrupt this weeks blog for a special news Break..
   Wow...What a disgusting AFC championship game (for we Pats fans)...Gonna be a long 8 months till the Pats play again. It's gotta be fixed...That game was for the birds. The good news is Spring training for the Sox is a few weeks away. And the Bruins are un-beaten! The Celts are just average...20-20..

Ok, done with my whining..we return you now to your regularly scheduled blog. I'll try to make this interesting...


The birds watching the game.

1st and 10

Ok, now Figure out the captions for these. Answers below...(No cheating)









And here are just a couple others...Couldn't come up with anything clever...

Here's the answers to this weeks pop quiz...
A: The Early Bird Catches the Worm
B: Naked as a jay bird
C: A Little Bird Told Me
D: Flipping the Bird
E: Birds Eye View
F: Kill 2 Birds with 1 Stone
G: Birds of a Feather flock together
H: A Bird in the Hand is worth 2 in the bush

Alright, I've got a toughie for next week, Animal tracks...This should be interesting...Thanks Jordan...And considering that it is going to be sub-zero temperatures all week, I may have to get Bella's feet wet and let her walk around the house....We'll see!

Have a great week!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Project 52 - Week 2 - Icicles

First off - Who's got my assignment for next week? C'mon! Hit me!

For Week2, again my sister-in-law Terry was first to issue me a challenge She gave me 'Icicles' as my homework. Thought it would be a breeze...Again, not so much...Started off the week with a relapse of the flu from working some all-nighters last weekend. So I couldn't get out and about. But luckily I got back to work on Wednesday. Felt the best I've felt since Christmas! Ya-Hoo!
I took it easy and just stayed at work on Wednesday, but felt good enough on Thursday to go out at lunch in search of some frozen drippage. It was about 48 degrees up here in Manchester! Couldn't find ice anywhere! Decided to go under my favorite bridge in Manchester. The Joker's Lair, I call it. Figured there would be some ice coming out of the storm drain...Nope...Too warm and the water was running.

Looked up and down the Merrimack river, and just saw blue skies and flowing water:

Anyway, day 1 of my search was a bust. Great scenery, and just happy be out in the fresh air shooting and feeling better-but no icicles.
Friday, I carpooled to work and didn't have my car to go hunting...And nothing to be found around my office building...So, no shots then.
Saturday, was another warm day. Looked out at my gutters where we usually have 6 foot icicles..Nope. Just this little guy which I took with my phone...

Go on...Squint and you might be able to see it up the top. Gosh! It's winter in NH for crying out loud. Shouldn't be this hard!
Later, Sue and I drove to Alton Bay to do some shopping (for her Birthday!), and along the way, I finally saw what I needed: Rock walls with ice! So I continued on to the jewelry store, and patiently did my husbandly duties, and bought Sue some bracelets. On the way back home, I safely parked the car in a rest area. "Oh Oh", she said..."Should have brought my knitting".. Eh, this wouldn't take too long (I don't think). I hopped out of the car... Ran across the highway....and snapped these:


(What were you thinking I was going to do?) ;-)
So, week 2 mission accomplished!

As a bonus, here are some shots I took last January along the Winnepesaukee River in Franklin NH:

So a really good weekend. Finally feeling better. Out with my honey, feeling well enough to shoot some pics,  and then lots of football to watch. GO PATS!!!!

Have a great week gang.


PS. Did I mention GO PATS!!!!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Project 52-Week 1 Stained Glass

Happy 2013!
Well I was going to do a Project 365 this year so I could get back to blogging, but both my manager and my agent said, "Are you Nuts?" Yeah, I do recall doing that a year ago and it was a wicked commitment. I almost forgot...Luckily I heeded their advice, and decided to do a Project 52...One post a week isn't so bad, right? WRONG!
Turns out that one of my Christmas gifts this year was the flu. Yes the one that is infecting the whole country. I've been coughing and my head has wanted to explode for 2 weeks now. Although I did have 3 days where I thought I was better,  some all-nighters at work knocked me back on my A**. I've had zero energy, and have not even felt like picking up my camera..But, I did commit myself to this P52, so here goes.
I asked my sister-in-law Terry (one of my biggest blog fans) for a category for week one. She said "Stained Glass". In my mind I had all these ideas of looking around town for some interesting windows, but was too sick and had no desire to go out. So I'm going to cheat....Here's your Stained Glass Terry:

I've been loading up on OJ and fluids, so here's a glass of OJ with a Photoshop stained glass effect... Sorry. not what you were expecting..

I'm sure Terry got the idea for Stained Glass from her son Justin's wedding on New Years Eve. Coincidentally, it was at St. Theresa's Church in Methuen: Maybe this is more what she had in mind:

It was a beautiful church and a beautiful wedding. Should have taken more pics, but it really needed flash, and I didn't want to be one of those pesky uncles who takes tons of pictures and disrupts the proceedings. Leave the work to the hired photographer.

But I did get this shot of Justin and Heather. Good luck guys! Love ya!

And there you go Terry and all. Week one done...
Who has an idea for week 2? Shoot me a message!
If I can get by butt off the couch, I'll get to work on it.
Stay healthy my friends