Friday, July 20, 2012

Bumbling with Textures

This bumble bee was kind enough to sit still on Donna's butterfly bush. the background was not attractive, so I tried a couple texture overlays using Totally Rad's Dirty Pictures plugin to add a couple of textures. I'm still getting a feel for how various textures and blending modes might look. Fun stuff to play with.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Backlight at Sunset

Ran across this older image in the files and thought to reprocess it. I was happy with it before- it hangs on my bedroom wall- but the software improves and I learn new things.

This was my sister's flower, next door. After work one day I was riding around looking for photo subjects and this caught my eye just as the sun was about the hit the horizon. An HDR originally done in Photomatix (have not used that in while since NIK's product came out) and Topaz Detail. Made a couple of adjustments in Topaz Adjust last night. I think I'm going to have to reprint it now.

You ever notice how flowers can be almost electric in appearance? Well, that is because they are, in sense. Many flowers need insects to assist in pollination. Insects, according to Dr. Callahan's research, tune into plants largely in the IR spectrum. So flower parts are waveguides for attracting bugs. He also demonstrated how sick, malnourished plants attract bad bugs. All fascinating stuff to me as a farmer. Callahan had a lot to do with radar in WWII in the defense of England. I imagine he has passed away by now, but if you like science, I recommend some of his easy reading books.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Technicolor Bug

This little bug was perched on a sunflower leaf the other morning. Looks like a leaf hopper to me, but I have never seen one so colorful. Cute little fellow, don't you think? As long as he stays away from my pumpkin crop he gets to live another day.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Buzzing Pollinator

Another image from my wife's wild flowers. It can be a bit tricky to shoot insects, especially bees when they are collecting pollen. They are, well, busy as bees! I was using a diffuser and no flash so patience was needed to wait for this bee to sit still for a moment.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Diets Like Like

_DSC9655_DxOpsnx 72dpi, originally uploaded by Donnie Fulks.

I had no idea there was diet soda back in the mid 1950's. I do remember when I was kid in the 1960's the 8 oz. soda bottles. On my last visit to the Silk Mill last month, I went looking for this bottle as I had not seen it before on previous trips. A friend had visited earlier and captured an image of this bottle. I found it in the basement, way back in the shadows in the spare parts shelves off the machine shop area. I made a 30 second exposure and lit it with my small flashlight, using my hand to shape the light.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Sunflower, Looking for Angles

There is just something fun about sunflowers. I have a number of sunflower images, but I was looking for a different angle. So I went to my wife's garden and came up with this one.

Processing was diverged from my usual routine, as I used NIK's Snapseed for Windows just for something different after the RAW conversion in DxO Pro. Snapseed imports tiff's and for files that need minimal work it can be handy. Photoshop was only used to down rez and add my copyright.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Yosemite Best of Show

This image from my visit to Yosemite last February won Best of Show last month in the Fredericksburg Photo Show. My cousin Joe remarked that he had heard I won on Facebook, not not seen the picture. Here it is Joe. I also made a BW version that liked as well.

Single image processed in DxO and Nik filters. The BW image was made quickly in Snapseed. Normally, I'd go to Silver Efex Pro for the BW conversion, but in this case I'll take Tony Sweets advice, "When it looks done, it is done."

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

There Were Three

_DSC1656_SnapseedB (c)72dpi, originally uploaded by Donnie Fulks.

I took this shot of the Osprey chicks last week. The three chicks seemed to be doing well and I had high hopes that all three would mature. Sadly, the youngest, seen on the left, did not survive the strong storm over the weekend. We had some large hail and it had been over 100 degrees all week. For whatever reason the youngest perished.

The remaining pair are almost grown and are now expected to eat fish their parents bring themselves. About a week and half ago, the mother began to fish for them as well as the father. I suspect mom thinks they are large enough to avoid predation at this stage. Although in the last week, one of the parents has driven off Bald Eagles who came too close to the nest on a couple of occasions. The last time, dad was bringing a huge golden fish to the nest when an eagle swooped in to get an easy meal. Nothing doing! The eagle was swiftly driven off. Earlier this spring, the moma bird pinned a young Bald Eagle to the ground that ventured too close to the nest. She nailed him a few times and I did think the eagle was going to escape. Eventually the eagle was able to limp away and after several tries managed to fly into a low tree.

the two remaining juveniles have begun to flap their wings in preparation of flying. It is going to take a few weeks of wing exercise before they are ready to attempt flight. Last year, the fist brief flying took place during a storm with strong winds. In essence, they begin early flight attempts in nature's wind tunnel which allows them to go straight up and down over the nest. Soon after that, they will fly a short distance to the nearest light or electric pole, rest a while and then fly back to the nest. Each subsequent day they fly a little further out and back. About a month after learning to fly, they will begin the migration to Central or South America with their parents (presumably). I guess they learn to fish on the journey south.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Crooked Stem, Crinkled Petals

This flower was the last one of the bunch. The stem was crooked and spindly. The petals crinkled and unsymmetrical. All of which made it stand out and I made the click. Finished in Snapseed with some texture added.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012


_DSC8097_DxOpstpzvce 72dpi, originally uploaded by Donnie Fulks.

I had planned for the last shot at Ryan and Gayle's wedding reception to involve some light painting. It turned out to be a fun one to do. Ryan and Gayle have been pestering me for weeks to finish it. Here's to love!