Small Steps

Pixley Falls State Park

Small Steps
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8, 0.8s, 21mm, f/11, ISO 200

A Strawberry Adventure

Delta Lake State Park

The full moon was around 11:40pm on Saturday night. I went down to Bellamy Harbor in an attempt to capture the moon rising. I really didn’t have high expectations as the moon rise was the same as sunset. It would be almost an hour after sunset before the moon would appear above the tree tops. I’ll save that adventure for another post. This one is about the following morning…

Sunday morning I went to Delta Lake State Park for the setting moon. The same conditions applied though, the moon was going to set at the same time as the sun would rise. I was a little worried the sky would be too dark causing me difficulty with the bright moon.

I tried a few different views but in order to expose the moon properly I had to really darken the rest of the scene. I was getting a little frustrated. Although the sun was still about 30 minutes from breaking the horizon the sky was starting to lighten up. Come on! Don’t give up yet…

The Strawberry Moon
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-100mm f/4, 1/3s, 61mm, f/8, ISO 400

Not my best. Not as good as I have done in the past, but it is starting to work for me. About this time I was startled by a guy bringing his kayak to the water. He was getting ready to go fishing. I was so focused on my adventure I didn’t hear him come up behind me. Now I know how people at work feel when come up behind them unexpectantly.

The moon was almost gone. I decided to go for the zoom shot. All the way out to 100mm to fill the frame (really wishing I had brought the 300mm with me). OK, I guess…

Almost Gone
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-100mm f/4, 2s, 100mm, f/11, ISO 200

I was ready to call it quits. As I started to walk back toward the car I had one more idea. I thought it would be cool to grab an image with the fisherman’s kayak. This one tells a story, or at least hints at one. This one made the morning adventure worth it…

Ready to Launch
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-100mm f/4, 1.3s, 80mm, f/11, ISO 200

Oh, did I forget to mention, June’s full moon is the Strawberry moon. A couple years ago I had a great time trying to capture as many of the full moons as possible and learned quite a bit about them in the process. In case you missed the first Strawberry moon post, you can view it here: Strawberry Moon. You can also see more posts related to the moon using this link: Full Moon posts.

Pixley in the Morning

Pixley Falls State Park

Saturday morning I headed out early to visit Pixley Falls before the sun was high in the sky. My hope was to catch the waterfall before the bright sun made the water to “hot” to photograph. I like long exposures for my waterfalls and direct sunlight will create an overexposed area in the water. I can control it with different exposures but really wanted to see if I could capture it with a single image. My timing was pretty good as you can see the sun was beginning to hit the trees to the left of the waterfall.

Pixley Falls
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8, 1s, 12mm, f/11, ISO 200
View the Falls
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8, 0.8s, 15mm, f/11, ISO 200
Fall Upstream
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8, 1s, 14mm, f/11, ISO 200
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8, 0.6s, 23mm, f/11, ISO 200

Simple Pleasures

Wordless Wednesday
Delta Lake State Park

Simple Pleasures
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8, 1/40s, 24mm, f/11, ISO 100

Tuesday at the Park

Delta Lake State Park

Come on!

This way!

It will be fun. Stop dragging your feet.

Tuesday was a gorgeous day! Tuesday was why I jumped at the opportunity to work the early shift. Tuesday made it all worth it.

Temperatures approaching 80 degrees. A slight breeze. A few clouds in the sky. Definitely time to go to Delta Lake and explore the trails within the park.

I raced home from work, changed my clothes, grabbed the camera and was in the park before 2pm. Yeah, I know, midday sun isn’t ideal. Says who? Images were waiting for me and I was ready to find them. The muddy colors of spring have finally turned to the greens of summer. I’ll find images to capture.

And you get to come along…

I avoided going to the beach. I walked back toward the front of the park to photograph the area near the park station. The sun was high but the trees around the water still provided shadows.

Blue and Green
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-100mm f/4, 1/400s, 12mm, f/11, ISO 200

There were a pair of blue jays (I think) working on one of the houses around the water. I attempted to get a good image but my lens only went to 100mm and every image seemed too small. That is what I get for only walking around with one lens. I had left the camera bag in the car. Maybe next time. I did like the bench though…

A Place to Relax
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-100mm f/4, 1/160s, 38mm, f/11, ISO 200

I walked toward the boat launch area as I knew I could hop on one of the trails. I thought there might be something worth photographing near the launch ramp but nothing caught my eye. After a short time the people putting their boats in the water were probably wondering what was up with me. Time to hit the trail.

This Way to the Trail
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-100mm f/4, 1/6s, 35mm, f/11, ISO 200

Not a lot to photograph but I did capture these two views of the trail. One with the sun to my back and the other shooting into the sun. Quick side bar…

There is a young professionals group at work. I know and work with quite a few of the “kids”. I do my share of picking on them, mostly in the “teaching them the ways of the force”. To be fair, they put up with me, and that makes them good in my eyes. I was asked to do a lunch and learn for the group. Any topic, doesn’t have to be work related and a few of them know of my photography. I captured these two images to demonstrate the importance of shadows to an image. In my head I was saying “light highlights, but shadows define.”

Go North?
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-100mm f/4, 1/15s, 24mm, f/11, ISO 200
Go South?
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-100mm f/4, 1/30s, 24mm, f/11, ISO 200

This trail brings me to the beach eventually. I captured a few images but my real goal was to get to the other trail on the opposite side of the beach. This body of water is lake adjacent. Not really part of the lake but the water rises and lowers as the levels in the lake change. On Tuesday, it was a sheet of glass and I cannot ignore a good reflection. Remember that little patch of yellow tree on the right. We’ll return to that on in a minute.

Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-100mm f/4, 1/160s, 17mm, f/11, ISO 200

The trail eventually came to a dead end (due to high water) so I backtracked to work my way toward the car. I almost didn’t get this next image. I started to walk between the trees and the image was finally processed by my brain. I walked back a few yards to capture the “X”.

“X” Marks the Spot
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-100mm f/4, 1/60s, 21mm, f/11, ISO 200

And now I’m on the opposite side of the water in the “Reflecting?” image.

Wow! An even better view. I stand and stare, taking it all in for a few minutes. And then I remember I’m supposed to be capturing the view. Do you remember the little yellow tree? It is now on the left. I’m fascinated by it, so obviously I need a few different views.

Reflecting 2
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-100mm f/4, 1/160s, 14mm, f/11, ISO 200
A Little Yellow
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-100mm f/4, 1/160s, 31mm, f/11, ISO 200

It was a great day for exploring. There are more trails to walk but it was getting close to dinner for the “boys” so I told myself I’ll be back to explore even more of the park.

When I reached the dead end of the trail (before the “X” image) I took a few pics with my phone so I could text my kids and gloat about being out of work already. I processed one using a few apps I have and then finished it with an app called “Prisma”. I’ll end this post with the one I tortured my kids with…

Sunset Serenity

Wordless Wednesday
Delta Lake State Park

Sunset Serenity
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8, 1/100s, 17mm, f/11, ISO 200

Memories of a Sunset

Delta Lake State Park

A quick visit to Delta Lake for the sunset. A few hours before this there were a few clouds in the sky which I would have loved for this image. Apparently, they found better sky to the west. The orange glow was not to be missed though…

Memories of a Sunset
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8, 1/200s, 31mm, f/11, ISO 200

Exploring the Sunset

Delta Lake State Park

The week was definitely a roller coaster ride as far as the weather was concerned. I can’t complain through when the final drop was a good one. Friday was another great day. Once again I was determined not to waste it by being a lump on the couch (well, any more than usual).

I was amazed at the number of cars in the parking lot at Delta Lake when I arrived for the sunset. Was I unaware of an event at the park? No, but a lot of people had the same idea as me.

Get out and enjoy the end of the day…

As I was on my way to the park the sun slid behind a few clouds and created a beautiful array of light streaking down from the sky. I might have pushed the pedal closer to the floor in an attempt to get to the park a little sooner. I was able to catch the very end of the show.

Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8, 1/160s, 19mm, f/11, ISO 200

The clouds were moving in and the expected rain was approaching quickly. I walked the edge of the beach, weaving my way around all the people, looking for one more peek of the sun before the clouds fully dominated the sky.

Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8, 1/100s, 12mm, f/11, ISO 200

The beach was crowded and noisy. I walked through the woods to the picnic area on the left. I was looking for a view through the trees but that didn’t materialize. I opted to climb down to the shore and grab a grand vista view of the lake with the clouds.

If you notice two objects in the water they appeared to be a couple of large branches from trees. After I snapped this image a few jet ski enthusiasts came flying past my location. I was a little worried about them hitting the floating debris. I have to admit though, they were quite loud, obnoxious and annoying, I might have thought it wouldn’t be a terribly bad thing if something caused them to not work any more…

Moving In
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8, 1/80s, 17mm, f/11, ISO 200

Heading back to the beach I noticed a small opening in the clouds. I started looking for a view to highlight the color contrast between the clouds and the orange glow from the sun. I seem to fall back to using the trees on the point in my compositions.

Hole in the Clouds
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8, 1/30s, 19mm, f/11, ISO 200

My chances for one last peek of the sun were fading quickly. I was having difficulty deciding if what I was seeing in the clouds was rain or not. There were still a lot of people on the beach but I really did not want to get caught if it started to rain. If everyone else was going to be brave about the rain so could I.

Growing Darker
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8, 1/13s, 17mm, f/11, ISO 200

I was determined to stay as the sky progressed from sunset into the blue hour but the more I looked at the clouds coming across the lake I was sure I would end up getting wet. One last image hoping to capture the rain in the clouds and then I would make my way back to the car.

Is That Rain?
Olympus E-M1 MK III, M. Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8, 1/6s, 17mm, f/11, ISO 200

Driving back home a few drops of rain hit the windshield. Did I make the right choice? It didn’t fully rain for quite a while after I got home. I bet if I stayed it would have rained sooner just to spite me… 🙂

One last word. I was processing these images this morning when I noticed the sky lighting up with the sunrise. Beautiful light, clouds to capture the colors and I swear I heard my name in the wind. Finishing this post early could wait. I threw the camera bag over my shoulder I drove off into the morning.

That adventure is for another post…