In the still times of the early mornings, before the sun rises, before the birds sing, there is a quiet time where we can contemplate our place in the world. What are our personal goals? What is the future of mankind in fifty years? A thousand years? Five thousand years? Longer than recorded history?
Everything that exists is its own complete universe. …
I stand by the sea, clicking away with my shutter release, grabbing the moments of a local sunset. Grabbing the fleeting moments as the sun hides behind the limb of the earth.
I stand with Gypsy, my dog who also enjoys the last few rays of this day. This day, when the sun, and the earth, and Gypsy, and I, all exists simultaneously.
This little moment, a few eye blinks between the Big Bang, and the final collapse of this universe, we share, almost entirely, the entirety of everything.
Everyone is the center of their own universe. … We are all equidistant from our centers, in all directions, at the speed of expansion, our individual observable universes, as they recede in an ever growing bubble of space time. Because we are all in different locations, and the speed of light is finite, all our observable universes are slightly out of sync.
Our universes overlap in every point except at the edges of the universe. Our edges are either, slightly closer or slightly farther away, from each of us, depending which edge we are closer to, by the distance that light takes to travle between us.
This is just a little piece of information about why I shoot multi image panoramas. …I could shoot this with a single image using a very wide angle lens, or I could use a longer lens and take multiple images, and then stitch them together.
The secret is in the detail. … I believe everyone who reads this is a great photographer, or is smart enough to know the little things I know already. …
Detail. … The source image is a stitched set of ten images, five images per horizontal row. I shoot with a Canon 5D Mark II, whose RAW image width is about 5,600 pixels. … This combined RAW image has a width of 20,000 pixels, and a height of about 9,000 pixels. … In little words, “This image is way big.” That is what the image call-out is showing at the bottom of the image. Detail. … A little detail of the center of the combined image. If I had used a single wide angle image, my source would be only 5,600 pixels wide, not near as much detail in 5,600 pixels as 20,000 pixels.
I like stitched multi-image panoramas because they can maintain the beauty of a great space, as seen from a distance, and simultaneously, you can get close and see all kinds of interesting stories in the same image. … 😉 Details.
Let us speak of sunsets and the time just after the sun has gone. Here is one of those images. …
Usually, I like clouds to grab the light from the sun as it slips over the horizon and out of my view, but it lights the remaining, high altitude, clouds very nicely. … On this evening, there were no clouds. I was a little disappointed for the nonce, because I always think about what I am planning to shoot before I head out to shoot. … The weather chose to ignore my planing, and the sky remained cloudless. …
Still, I looked at the sky, and what was there, and I thought it beautiful.
Jaz Cook, and her partner, hired me to shoot some images for their real estate business. She really wanted some images for their online presence. … We shot those, and they were very happy with them. We actually shot several times for several different looks. … But this image?
For this image, I had the lighting units there to shoot some portraits, and I love colors. … 😉 … So, in the moments between the real work, we played a little.
With the La Jolla sun banging against the empty La Jolla home, and streaming through the windows of a room with an ocean view and filled with mirrors, I gelled the units with a single color, and banged back.
These two images were taken exactly seven minutes apart, on the same day, December 10, 2011, in Ocean Beach California.
It was my intent to wait until the moon got as low as it could, so that I could capture the Moon, the Pier, and the Surf, with maybe a little sand. Alas, it did not come to pass. We are all limited by external forces. 😉
I got there early, and used my compass and “The Photographers Ephemeris” on my iPhone to plot where the moon would actually set. The Moon would eventually set just right of center in these two images, if it could be seen.
That was the problem. I had forgotten to consider that the eclipsed moon is very dark, in contrast to the dawning sky. … So, as the sky lightened, the moon faded away. It faded away long before it even got to the fog bank that you can easily see in the second image.
I find it very interesting to open both these images in two separate tabs of my web browser then use my arrow keys to jump quickly from one image to the other to compare the height of the moon, and the lightness of the sky.
Sunsets have always grabbed my attention. Many people see them as signaling the end of the day. For me, they are the bringers of the night, but more important, they open my eyes.
Sounds a little silly, but, the night is full of many amazing things to see and hear. There are sounds, stars, the moon, lights, living things, almost all of which, can only seen at night.
The night sky opens our minds to the immensity of the Universe. As the sunset colors fade through twilight, and afterglow, the distances of the Universe open the consciousness for those that gaze upon the deeps. The very closest thing we can see at night in the sky, is the 238,857 miles away moon, and we can see way beyond that. The most distant object visible to the naked eye is M31, the Andromeda Galaxy, which is about 2 million light-years distance.
In between those two objects is a huge space filled with untold, and unimaginable, objects. That huge space is only a minuscule portion of the Universe.
How can looking at such things not open our minds?
Some days require keeping your nose to the grindstone, working your bottom off, and a couple pots of coffee to keep the pups primed.
This is the opposite of that kind of day. The kids are in school, most of the tourists are between here and there. It is a day of reflection, listening to the birds by the bay, the gentle lapping of the wavelets against the pilings. … Tomorrow is another day, but today, I am comfortable.
Pimelometopon pulchrum: The California sheepshead ranges from Monterey Bay to the Gulf of California with the largest populations in the lower half of the range, south of Point Conception. It is usually caught at the edges of kelp beds and rocky shores where its main diet consists of mollusks, lobsters, crabs, and small fishes. It is not related to the sheepshead of the Atlantic coast and the Gulf of Mexico. And, even more important, it is mightily tasty!
This image is one of my favorites of Ocean Beach. People are going about their business. There are five separate conversations going on, and when I look at the large image, I swear I can hear the voices. 😉
I am not really hearing the voices, but I can read the body language. A few are drinking a beer and watching the sun as it sets behind the ocean. The cops are talking to a whole group of skate boarders. A woman is walking alone, glancing at the setting sun. Some of these people will sleep here tonight.
This was a wonderful evening. These boys had spent the evening dancing across the surface of the sea with the wind and the surf. They had sat on their boards, watching the horizon, looking for any wave that caught their eyes. It did not have to be the perfect wave, the moment was perfect sitting on the gently rolling swells, only occasionally speaking with each other.
Even now, as they leave the sea, walking beside each other, they spoke not a word. The rhythm of the surf breaking against the pilings of the pier, and the call of the gulls, was all that could be heard. The boys of the sun were on their way forward, leaving their love behind, to rejoin common man.
Wandering around in the valley, I came across this culvert with its walls covered in colorful graffiti. The colors of the paint contrasting with the luminescent green algae, and the urban location of this image are some of the things that keep bringing me back to this image.
I wonder about the people that painted these walls. Was it practice? Who did they think they were painting this for? It can only be for themselves. Like the walls of caves, long time deserted, this art will stand through time. Here is the heart of man.
This is what the Ocean Beach Street Fair looks like from the end of the Ocean Beach Pier, looking inland. This day was wonderfully warm, but not hot. And we were at the beach, which is a nice place to be.
The day of the street fair was the kind of Southern California days we think are year-round, but the last few days have been locked into June Gloom types of overcast days.
I hold a Fourth of July drink on the third of July, in toast, “Here is looking forward to the absence of June Gloom!”
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.
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 town is my adopted home. Like many of us here, I am a transplant. Let me tell you something about the weather; this image was shot at 5:30 in the evening on January 3rd, 2006, our winter. The temperature was 76 degrees Fahrenheit. 😉 … It does get warmer, and it does get colder, but whatever the change is, it is very little compared to most of the U.S.
I did go away for a few years. … But I have returned, I think, to stay.
At the time, in any location on our planet, when the sun is sinking in transit from day to night, all the species of plants and animals prepares for their nocturnal or diurnal missions. Diurnal, to sleep, and dream of love, life, and events untold coming from the events of the past day. Nocturnal, to rouse, take stock, touch, feel, taste the blood coursing through the veins, to live again.
Here we stand, at a point of decision. We can look at a moment and decide. Shall we live, or shall we sleep?
I love the stars in this image. … It is so nighttime, still and quiet. You can hear every gentle groan, squeak, and rub, in the Basin, because there are so few noises of movement as the water barely moves in its small variances.
People are asleep in some of these boats. This place is, home and work, for those few living another life just a few feet from others of us that live on land. Even while they are at dock, they sync to the tides, and the stars, while we sync to the clock.
This little section of beach is part of The San Dieguito Wetlands Project in the San Dieguito River Valley. The project will take 150 acres of coastal wetlands back in time, to when life flourished in the river valley.
It is also where horses can run in the water, and where I caught grunion with my family, as a boy. It is a place of people, kites, volleyball, and dogs. You would like it there. I do.
Tomorrow I will be … In a few years the earth will … “In the year 2525, if man is still alive” …
This image illustrates all transition for me, because it is so easy to see and understand because it happens in such a short time, we can see it progress. It is an image of a frog, or a tadpole? It is really a froglet. Froglets are usually seen with much shorter tails.
Everything has a lifetime to live, and we change throughout that life, we only call it living in mankind, not metamorphosis as we do in frogs, because we do not lose a tail, or grow legs. … Or do we? Our most visual metamorphosis takes place unseen, in the wombs of our mothers, where we lose our tails, and gain four limbs.
Most humans try to separate themselves from animals, I don’t. I revel in the flow of time, and I look forward to the continued evolution of myself, all life known and unknown, and the universe.