Happy Monday! ~ 270
Some more images taken at Eagle Point Park on Saturday. There were three barges that locked through while we were at the park. That’s not many considering how long we were there. The comment most often heard was, “It doesn’t seem very efficient when you have a barge wasting all that fuel waiting for 30 plus minutes waiting to lock through.” It must be cost-effective though or they would abandon the process.
I like this image of the fire in the barbecue pit. Fire is a fascinating subject to photograph. I have a friend who is on the fire department in Maquoketa and he has said that he will call me the next time they burn down a structure for practice. I would enjoy capturing that event.
We had a great time at the park. Yes I did shoot lots of images of the Grand Kids and I’ll show them as the week unfolds.
Finally as we were leaving the park Saturday evening Jeanne and I both saw the soft light on part of the dam from the setting sun. I had to stop and grab some images of it.
I spent three hours yesterday cutting, trimming, and sweeping the grass. Just about 30 minutes before the heavens opened up with an afternoon long rain. I love it when a plan comes together.
I also had to repair two of the feeders. The first job was on the newest feeder purchased last week. I noticed that not one bird had eaten there. I moved it to another location, changed the food and still no one was eating. Then I discovered it was for thistle only. Well I already had two feeders with thistle so to the workshop and I made some modifications to it. The birds drained all the feed by the end of the day. 🙂
Then I had a hanger gave out on one of the feeders so I had to repair and reinforce that. There were four birds on it when last I looked.
On my bird feeder project, (click on the link to the right side of this blog) my photo last night was of seven birds on one feeder. The birds are wet because it is raining but that didn’t detour them from getting their fill.
That’s it for today. Hope you enjoy your Monday (it’s here all day.) Thanks as always for stopping by the blog and be careful.
Happy Sunday! ~ 271
Fun day yesterday. Jeanne and I had some errands to run and then we stopped by the bird store to pick up some more feed. These guys are starting to get expensive. I may have to take on a second job just to afford them. 🙂
Yesterday afternoon we met at Eagle Point Park for a nice picnic to celebrate Ben’s birthday. Complete with yard games and all kinds of snacks. The only problem I saw was that Ben ended up doing all the grilling for his own birthday party. Yes it was hot and humid at the park but I have devised a way to take my little desk fan and some portable power with me and so I remained relatively comfortable until Angie and I got into a pretty competitive game of bean bag.
That and chasing the kids around the park proved to be a big heat generator. I have a friend that says Summer is God’s punishment for fat people. 🙂
I don’t personally subscribe to that but fat or skinny (and I’ve been both) I have always disliked the heat.
Funny thing as we were sitting talking, Nick (Ben’s younger brother) asked me what kind of birds I have been shooting and I told him as of right now mainly sparrows, finches, black birds, one cardinal and some grackles. Then he asked have you shot any blue jays and I said no, then as if on command a blue jay landed on the fence several feet behind us. He was highly back lite from the river so I didn’t get much of him other than his silhouette but I got a blue jay. 🙂
So we had a nice time at the park with our families and then got home around 9:00 p.m. It was still light out with the summer solstice taking place yesterday. it’s all down hill from now on until next year.
It was great to see the Spirit of Dubuque on the river again. According to the news reports it has been hung up in the Ice Harbor because of the high water levels and hasn’t been able to get out on the river. So apparently they got that solved because the river is still very high.
That’s it for today. I hope to get the grass cut today. My back yard is still pretty wet but we lost one of the dogs in the grass for about an hour last night. 🙂
Thanks for stopping by. Enjoy your day and be careful. Wear sunscreen.
Happy Saturday ~ 272
A rare Saturday post for me. I usually take Saturday off to re-energize from the week. But as I was setting out by the bird sanctuary last night getting my shot of the day I had what I thought were some interesting images that I would like to share with you.
Jeanne and I spent about an hour on the patio last night, her with her binoculars and me with my camera, just chatting and enjoying watching the antics of the birds.
So just a short post today with no pontification or rambling thoughts. Just some birds that eat at Upde’s Diner.
Enjoy your Saturday and be careful.
Happy Friday! ~ 273
One of the goals I had in mind when I started feeding and photographing the birds was to get some really good images of the male cardinal. They are one of my favorite birds. Since setting up the “bird sanctuary” (as Angie calls it) I have seen a cardinal twice. Once when he flew through the bird feeder area at high-speed and once when he landed on the ground a few feet from them for less than ten seconds and then disappeared.
So when I got home, last evening, I didn’t expect to see much at the feeders as it had rained for several hours and was still raining when I got my clothes changed and the camera set up. I decided to shoot through the patio door because of the rain and use an outside flash to help illuminate the birds. I had taken a couple of shots of the few sparrows that were brave enough or at least hungry enough to endure the rain while getting something to eat when all of a sudden this blur of red landed on the brown feeder. I could just see his head but knew he was a cardinal.
These are not award-winning images but they are the first (hopefully of many more) images I have been able to make of the male cardinal. 🙂
I believe I have mentioned before I joined the Adobe Cloud for Photographers program when it first came out. It cost $9.95 per month and for that you get all the new updates when they come out for Photoshop and Lightroom. Sometimes the updates are just small improvements or a new feature that has been introduced, but yesterday they did a big upgrade to a new system called Photoshop CC – 2014. I’ve only seen one video outlining all the new features but it is exciting. They also made some enhancements to Lightroom 5.5, however I haven’t had the opportunity to learn what they are.
Maybe this weekend I can get some studying done and learn the new tools that Adobe has provided for us. I won’t have to work on the yard this weekend as it is mainly standing water all over. Can’t take the big brush pile to the recycling center because the ground is too soft to bring a vehicle back there so I get to work on images and learn the new features. 🙂
Here is a bonus image. I wasn’t going to show this because it is not a very good shot but it will give you some idea how wet the birds were and how miserable the conditions were for them yesterday.
That’s it for today. Thank you for stopping by. Enjoy your Friday and be careful.
Happy Wednesday! ~ 275
More bird stuff today. I’ve been perplexed because I haven’t been able to attract the kind of birds I want to and one of them is the Gold Finch. Occasionally one will come around but they get chased off by the larger and more aggressive birds. I was talking to my friend Steve today (he is really into birds as well) and he gave me some good things to think about.
So when I got back to Dubuque last evening I stopped at Menards to see what they had in the way of bird seed. It is closer to stop there but they don’t have as large of selection that Theisens has.
Anyway I got the idea to move the thistle feeder away from the rest of the feeders so the other birds wouldn’t bother the finch. Since he is one of the few that actually eat the thistle I reasoned that he would be by himself at that feeder and perhaps he would tell his mates about it and then we’d have more finches.
Well at first I was ready to declare success as he did indeed go to the thistle feeder but then he went to some of the other ones as well and didn’t seem to mind the bigger birds. So much for my well thought out plan. 🙂
That’s all I have for you today. I fresh out of wisdom, important things to talk about, and gossip.
Thanks for stopping by. Enjoy your midweek hump day and be careful.
Happy Tuesday! ~ 276
Just your common, everyday, run of the mill, ubiquitous Robin. Making an image of one is kind of like making an image of a cow. They are everywhere and we don’t seem to pay much attention to them.
In the early Spring when we’re waiting for signs that Winter is finally over the sighting of that first Robin is an exhilarating feeling. Spring is finally here. After that they become so common place that they blend into obscurity.
So why all the images of Robins? Well as I was working on my bird feeder project I followed the antics of this particular Robin. He is in all the shots today. He was oblivious of me and just did his thing going from the basketball backboard, to the bird bath for a drink, and then finally off to the big tree at the back of the yard. Kind of fun just to watch him do his thing.
Busy day at work yesterday, lots going on and trying to fit it all in during the normal work hours is a challenge. Generally Summer with all the vacations and temporary help is a fairly slow time for me but not so this year. I had lunch with my good friend and then had to go to LeClaire, Iowa. I don’t get there very often but it is a wonderful community.
I was a little early for my appointment and since it was close I drove by the Lock and Dam 14. The last time I was there it was eagle season and the observation area all around the observation area was full of photographers. Yesterday it was (not quite as full) the fishermen who were in charge. Lots of them sitting in chairs and on the rocks with their fishing poles in the water waiting for the elusive bite.
After dinner Jeanne had PEO so I sat on the back patio with my tripod and camera finding an image for the bird feeder project. I am enjoying this project a lot and unlike the 365 project I don’t have to think about what I’m going to shoot each day. I just set up by the bird feeders and shoot away. It’s great fun watching the turf wars and the parents feeding their young. Often times the young ones are as big as the parents. 🙂
Each night I have to chore. Clean out the bird bath (crazy birds poop in their own water.) Then replenish the favorite feeders and then of course hose off the patio closest to the feeders from the birds left overs. It looks like I’m going to have to make another run to the store for more supplies. They are hungry guys.
That’s it for today. Thanks for stopping by the blog. I hope you enjoy your day and be careful.
Happy Monday! ~ 277
I hope you enjoyed your Father’s Day. I had one of the best in recent memory. What I wanted for Father’s Day was to do something with my kids. Angie had said that she, Ben, and the Grand Kids were going to bring DQ over later in the afternoon. So when Mark arrived I asked him how long he was going to be able to stay (thinking I wanted to be sure he would be here when Angie stopped over.) He said, “I here all day for you to do whatever you want.”
During our conversation we got to talking about golf and to make a long story short we decided to go over to Lacoma Golf Club and play the front 9 of the old course. We originally were only going to play 9 holes because of the threatened rain but the weather proved to be just great so we played 18 holes.
It was a great time together and to spend it playing golf made it even more special. Neither one of us played very well but the golf was secondary. One of my dreams has always been to play golf with my kids. We did it a lot when they were younger, but now that I’ve pulled away from golf and they both have their own busy lives I wasn’t sure it was going to happen. Now my next goal is to play with both Angie and Mark together. 🙂
When we got home Jeanne made us a nice lunch and then I took a nap. When I came back to the world Mark had dug out the stump for us. That is the second one he has dug out and sure saved me a lot of hard work, aches, and pain.
Around 6:00 p.m. Angie, Ben and the Grand Kids came over for ice cream and we had a great visit and of course a Oreo Blizzard just makes the world seem better. 🙂
Some camera information. I shot all the images for this post with a little Nikon Coolpix point-and-shoot camera. It does an okay job for events like this when you really can’t drag the big DLSR out. There are some beautiful golf holes at Lacoma and there were some times I wished I had brought the D4 but this little camera did a good job.
On other news I have sold my D800. The D800 is a great camera and captures amazing detail. The trade-off is that the files are huge and hard to work with. They actually slow my computer down to the point of frustration. I am never going to do any type of photography that requires that level of detail. That and the fact that I did not need three cameras convinced me to sell it. I still have the D4 and the D600, which is a super camera.
Okay, I’ve already told you more than I know so it’s time to get on with the day. Thanks as always for stopping by the blog. Enjoy your day and be careful.