Tuesday, November 08, 2005


This picture was taken from the train on the way to San Jose to see my dad & step mom. I'm going to go again here soon. Although the train is moving and the windows are not always perfect, with a good eye you can take some ok pictures from a train. Even if you are a very experienced photographer, I'd recommend that you take a long train trip with
Amtrak the next time you travel. It beats the airport mess. No security lines and all
that crap, you usually get too large seats to yourself. it’s a bit cheaper then flying and MUCH better then the bus. There is no comparison to the bus. You always can move if
you don't like the person your sitting next too. The Cost Starlight to California and Seattle is a great scenic trip--you can get a small cabin room for more money. I don't fly anymore
unless I have too. The photo opportunities are sometimes really nice because the train
slows down and stops often. There is an observation car you can stay in the whole trip if you want. With a dome making photography easy. Shooting from a train is much easier then
a car. You would be surprised if you have not tried it.

I'm not sure exactly where this was, it could have been in Oregon but if I recall it's
more likely to be Northern California. I have a GPS but to mark every picture would be impossibly hard. The whole trip was a race between the train going 80miles an
hour and myself trying to catch a decent picture. Not easy- but you start to get
used to it--kind of like shooting clay pigeons, you have to line up with what's coming
and shoot as you pass. (Above)

There is one highlight of being in The Dalles, a network of old roads or allies big
enough for cars is interlaced with the true roads. These dirt roads are usually
not private and you can walk on them and take pictures. It is sometimes difficult
and you might get the cops called on you--when someone did that to me all I had to
do was show them I was photographing insects and not planning a robbery or
something. But if your going to take pictures you have to be bold sometimes.
There are tons of natural bushes and flowers that grow on the sides of these ally
ways with lots of photo opportunities. Just around my house walking down several
I found grapes growing naturally, and this huge beautiful tree(above) which I could not get
far enough away from so I had to use my wide angle lens to shoot it. I had to go as
wide as I could to even think of capturing this very tall tree. It is easy to get
pictures like this and usually I don't get any trouble--often people say high and
ask "are you getting some good pictures?" Even when I am shooting in or over there
yard. You got to be careful what you shoot however.

It has recently been raining here. After hunting insects un-successfully on a cool
afternoon I found this grass right in my own yard covered with great water.
These were difficult shots because it was getting late and these kind of pictures
cannot usually be done with a flash.

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