30 Seconds With a Bobcat!

I love time compression and expansion. This was shot on my iPhone with an application named TimeLapse. The reason I chose to use this application instead of any of the other time lapse applications, even the iPhone native time lapse mode, is that this application will capture full res still images. And from those I can import them into lightroom, make some global adjustments, and I can reframe the image to the 1920x1080p hd video by croping some of the original image.

Cool. Is it not?

[by Jack Foster Mancilla]

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Small flower in soft light

I love walking around with a Macro lens. Getting up close and personal with the small things I see in my world.

When you look through the viewfinder of any image that you are shooting, you decide some things, like what you want to include in the frame. A Macro, because it is looking at such a small thing has already eliminated 99.9% of the world around you. You have chosen to focus on the tiny bit of the world that has captured your attention. Now what?

One of the very cool things about a Macro lens, that all photographers know, but that many people who take pictures do not know, is that a Macro has an incredibly narrow depth of field. Depth of field is the photographic term for the range of acceptable focus where the images seems to be sharp, or is sharp enough to be called, “in focus.”

Any lens has a specific focus. Period. But, our eyes cannot tell the difference between super sharp focus, and really good focus, or even just good focus. …

Depth of Field Indicators

Sometimes we get a little help from the lens manufacturers. You will notice the difference on these two len’s barrels. …

The top one is an 85 mm portrait lens, and the indicators are, in green feet, and in white meters, and the list at the bottom is the f-stop of acceptable focus. … You can see that in the 85 mm lens, at f16, is about 7 feet to 13 feet from the focal plane of the camera.

While the acceptable range of focus on the 180 mm Macro, focused for a 1to1 macro is so tine as to be indiscernible, just looking at the lens.

So, in any photo you also can limit what is in the frame with acceptable focus. That focus limitation, or strength, depending on your application, is exaggerated when shooting a Macro.

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Round, round, round, round, we get around.


WordPress World Stats
[by Jack Foster Mancilla

a photo by LensLord on Flickr.
My complete Gallery is located here -> Jacks Big Gallery

It always amazes me when I get to looking at blog stats. For example, this image to the right, and the much larger version if you click on it, shows me how many unique visitors I have had on my site in the past two months, I include the past two months only, because I have just started writing in my blog after a year hiatus. Not surprisingly, most of my visitors are from the U.S.A., I live here. 😉 But, the few singletons from all over the world did surprise me. The truth is, I am not sure I know anyone in most of these countries. So, to you folk, visiting from the ethers, I say, “Hello! Welcome aboard! Enjoy yourselves. It is great to have you around, round, round, round; we get around.”

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Pocketwizards – Lions and tigers and bears. Oh, my!

Photo Jun 01, 18 31 51Photo Jun 01, 18 32 33

For quite a while I have had several “Alien Bee” Strobes. I used to use them quite a bit, when I shot pets at Petco. … I was good at it, still am. “Link to Pet Images.

Anyway, back to the topic at hand. … When I was using the Bees I had some very inexpensive, and very cheap, radio triggers. Since then, I have moved to using Canon Speedflashes for most of my work, because they are just more portable.

But, there has been a drawback for the 580 II, and earlier flash units. They were all ETTL via an infrared signal. I had quite a problem shooting in the desert, and into the sun, and around corners. The problem was that they just could not do that.

I did want some radio triggered PocketWizards for quite a while, but at the time, PocketWizard did not make ETTL wizards. And I wanted all the benefits of ETTL. … So I waited, and waited, getting by with lesser products. Finally, PocketWizard made the FlexTT5 for Canon cameras. Now, I could control my off camera flash units with ETTL via radio. Yahoo!

But, then I had another problem, all the Alien Bee strobes that I had only synced to a 200th of a second. And, they did not work with ETTL. So the Bees were mostly consigned to storage. … Bummer dude. …

Sometimes Magic happens.

Now, the wizards at PocketWizards have made these little adapters, the AC9 adapters. I hook one of these little guys to my FlexTT5, and then via a small connecting four wire, RJ14 cable, I can wirelessly control my Bees into Hypersync, and now far beyond the earlier limit, now it is up to an 8000th of a second. And I can modify the levels of the flashes from my camera, just by changing the shutter speed, or the aperture. And I can use my canon speedflashes simultaneously.

They are amazing.

I have a Prom to shoot next week, and I wanted to incorporate all my flash units for maximum flexibility!

Today was my test time. A charm! They work like a charm! 🙂

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Good Morning!

I told a couple friends that they would not recognize our house. As you can see, it is different.





Morning Coffee

One of the first things to be done in the morning, besides letting the dogs outside, is to fix the morning coffee.

As you can see, the early morning sun is cascading through the kitchen window, across the sugar, the coffee, the coffee pot, and the toaster, while my cup sits at the ready, awaiting the double sized portion of brew required for filling.

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The Promise – A story of one man.

This image is only a representation of my favorite possession. As you can see, this image is of an unsharpened pencil. And, you may wonder, how can a pencil, nothing more than graphite bound in clay wrapped with wood, be a prized possession?

Where people are often told that the eyes are the windows to the soul, I can say that a pencil physically connects me to the time line of humanity. It connects me to the history of the ancients. Any stylus for imprinting information on a clay tablet could be used to transfer thoughts through the ages.

Even more important for me than the past that the pencil represents, is that the pencil represents my ability to speak to humanity far into the future.

With, or without, conscious thought, a pencil applied to a carrying medium can transport our thoughts forward through time. Today, I write these words. Tomorrow, I post these words. These words can be read through countless tomorrows for the entirety of mankind’s existence.

You, reading this now, may be a member of the iReport bootcamp, you may be reading this while I am still alive. Or you may be my curious great, great, great grand niece a hundred years from the time of this writing. Far enough into the future, you may live on another planet. If all who read this story look deep enough into your minds you may catch glimpses into that future, or that past, that this story is a part of.

I used a pencil, but I am a photographer, a videographer, why not use a camera, or video with sound to express this thought? I choose the pencil as a symbol. A pencil is common to most of humanity today, and its function can easily be recognized ten thousand years ago, or ten thousand years into tomorrow. Only the concept that the symbolic pencil represents is important.

I chose the unsharpened pencil because, even unsharpened, it is full of promise. And, like a mind full of promise, until the pencil is sharpened it is just a stick.

Our minds, when sharpened and conscientiously put to use with conscious thought, can transcend the mundanity of the mud we came from and move mankind to the stars of humanities tomorrow.

I initially wrote this for a CNN project. It can be seen here.
Link to the CNN Report

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The Heart of Vulcan

Ironwork has always fascinated me. Look at the concentration on this man. Although you cannot see his eyes, you can see that nothing else exists for him. … He is living in that point of electric arc that point of hot fusing metal. His entire body is focused on creation.

What a cool gig!

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Vulcan Geothermal Plant Across the Salt Flats

I really like the contrasts of smooth waters and clear skys with their gently colored hues, against the manmade power lines, cooling towers, all the hard equipment of the Vulcan Geothermal Power Plant, and all its hard colors.

This is the second image of the Vulcan Geothermal Plant that I have published on my blog. Earlier in the day, I also shot a close up view of the right side of this plant. <-Link

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San Diego – Overlooking the Santa Fe Train Station

I just love San Diego. This image includes the buildings of Santa Fe Train Station, One America Plaza, Advanced Equities Plaza, The Pinnacle Museum Tower, Manchester Grand Hyatt Seaport, Harbor Club East, The Grande North at Santa Fe Place, among others.

This is a day that was supposed to be dominated by “June Gloom,” which generally means a low marine cloud that obscures the sun. … It turned out to be more like 90% of all the other days in San Diego, gorgeous.

This is a link to the horizontal version of this shot.

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The Vulcan Geothermal Plant

Energy is something we all need. Energy, to get up in the morning, to grow, to harvest, to transport, to prepare the food we need to stay alive. We need energy to get back and forth to work. We need energy to move the water from its source to our mouths. There is a whole set of energy needs that are, without question, a requirement for life.

Then there is the set of energy requirements that are questionable. For me, I thought I could not get by without all my computers. Today I cut back to two computers. Elective travel, is another place I have cut back. Another place I can help is in being more creative in choosing my source of food. My friend, Randy, told me about a group of local growers that will deliver to a central location, once a week, a variety of food grown locally. Done! I will not buy vegetables that have to be transported long distances.

And there is the source of energy. I guess that now we all can agree that poking holes through our major food locations for oil, without a real failsafe policy is stupid. … But, I think that it should not be done at all. I support Solar, Wind, Geothermal, and Nuclear energy.

This is a link to a longer shot, across the salt flat that borders the plant. <-Link

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Courtyard of the Greystone Mansion – Beverly Hills, California

Early last month, I had the privilege of being a vendor at the Beverly Hills, Greystone Mansions version of the Concourse d’Elegance.

Needless to say, I had a great time in a beautiful venue.

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Concourse d’Elegance – Greystone Mansion – Beverly Hills, April 11, 2010

The Concourse d’Elegance at the Greystone Mansion in Beverly Hills, was a great learning experience with my friend Lois. I learned some things about showing my images to crowds of people. … I sold nothing … But I earned a thousand things that I had not had before. …

I learned that most people like the work I do. They would stand for quite a bit of time and just look at my images, asking a question now and then. … I learned the young people, very young people, would walk by with their hands in their parent’s hands, and say, “Wow! That’s cool.” Even the other artists liked my work, and wondered why they had never seen me before. … All that felt really good.

And a magazine asked for a submission of three images, along with a short article for publication. Great!

And I chose this green Palm Beach labeled Ferrari as the image to go with this post because I think the car is beautiful.

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Yellow Flames on Red Rod

Sunday the 11th, I will be at the Greystone Mansion Concours d’Elegance in Beverly Hills. I have some framed images and a bunch of prints that will be available.

Saturday, I will be loading in my setup from one to five pm. Then the place will be locked up until Sunday morning. You should check out some of the cars that are going to be there. … With any luck, I will be able to make some contacts to shoot another set of images!


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Heading West

Heading West is not just a direction on the planet, it is a direction for the future. …

Horace Greeley did say this, “Go West young man, go West!” But, he lifted the intent from John B. L. Soule, an Indiana journalist, phrase, “Go West, young man, and grow up with the country”

To me, Heading West is heading to the future. In this image it is a railroad track leading to clear blue skys, out from under a dark cloud. … But, the track is set, you cannot vary from a track. With luck, our track will lead mankind to the stars.

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