Thursday, June 21, 2007


7 miles high- no color changes here. I suggest those who fly take a good old mechanical SLR or range finder camera when flying. It is legal and not against the rules to use mechanical cameras on aircraft as they do not generate radio frequency interference. A built in light meter or auto-f-stop also applies. If your camera has anymore then a little button cell just a bit bigger then a watch battery your camera is not all mechanical and you may be asked to turn it off.
I'm not sure on all the rules but fully mechanical only cameras are not capable of producing electrical interference. A light meter or auto f-stop does not apply here as those systems use only a tiny amount of DC current just like a wristwatch.

Pogie-- one of my mom's cats.
A common spider in Micronesia. This species sometimes has bright iridescent markings. I will probably show you more and better pictures of this spider in a future post.

The girls of Bali make these offerings for the Hindu gods. They are intricate and require lots of time to make. They look somewhat like sushi. I have seen offerings like rice, spices, flowers, incense, as well as tobacco, beer and cigarettes and other stuff left burning or open for the God's to enjoy. Insects, birds and really nasty dogs end up getting most of it. They are refreshing however because of all the incense. I admire the discipline and most of all, deep respect for all life. They are woven out of palm tree leaves into boxes in which the offerings are placed inside or near.
A flashback shot-- I think I already showed you this spider but in case not--here is a Huntsman spider in Bali. They are somewhat related to the white crab spiders in the USA.

This shot was not easy. It was not done with any Photo-edit program. I did this all with the camera and gear. No edits at all here, only my name and copyright were stamped on.

I often find ordinary objects can show a sense of interesting beauty. I bring a SLR nearly everywhere I go. You never know when you will get the shot or find something worth taking pictures of. Observe privacy. Ask permission when taking photos in any business or building.
It helps to have buisness cards to show you are really a photographer and not planning some kind of crime. Sadly, I have had to deal with the police several times. People are parioned these days. Since I got my larger digital SLRs I have not been bothered. What crimaial would use such a huge lens and camera to plan some kind of robbery? The police have allways treated me well. If you are out walking taking pictures--bring ID. Something I nearly had to learn the hard way.

Most public places let you take pictures. Here I was holding my camera in a painful position while petting this shark. I am not certain, but it is probably a baby nurse shark. Nurse sharks look dangerous but you would have to grab one and shove your hand into it's mouth to get bit. So I have been told and seen on educational channels. They have a mouth that sucks in fish and stuff. Something like that. Yes, this is real and they did let me pet this live shark. They do feel a bit like fine sand paper.
Here is an icon of Guam and the Northern Marianas. Homes blown to peaces and then re-built as best they can do. Too many people over there live in homes like this. They can't afford to repair and no company in there right mind insures over there except for insane prices. A class 4 or 5 typhoon hits the islands about once every 7-10 years. I went through Chata'an. (Sorry I have no idea how to spell it). I lived three stoires up. No watter. No working toylet. Nothing except an emergency power system that surved me very well. I built it uppon moveing there knowing that I would eventually have to go through one of these things. It ripped off my metal screen door with full sized hinges clean off the wall. The hinges were large enough for a any regular home dead bolted door--one I found still on my doorstep, it was bent nearly in half. It would be difficult to do that even with a vice and a large pair of pliars. The power is incredible. And yah, the rain does hurt. It took all my strength to open my door which nearly smashed in half when it slammed behind me. I wish I had pictures. A bank of deep cycle batteries connected to switches and an old amp meter that led to several inverters converted from EPS units ran my stuff. I was able to power a 20something inch TV, a VCR, DVD, large fan and full bright 70w lightbulb. My stario system and other things as well tied in. I was able to also power my laptop. For a short time I back-wired my apartment with a 400w transformer inverter and lit it up. For miles all you could see was little candles. And my stario was blasting and my lights were all on in a show of defince. I really loved that setup! We did not get power or suage or regular watter for over a month. It was not easy but I had it far better then most.

My mom. There are some great sushi places in Guam. Mom, I hope when you see this you think this is a good picture of you. This is a candid shot I just snapped. Usually those kind of un-planned pictures are the best.

Now I know your going to think I used some kinda software for this. I did not. The picture is completely un-touched. In fact this image is true color and shows the spectacular sunsets my mom and step dad Jeff relax with nearly every night.

Another view. I would have to get really technical to bring up the palm tree and tiny island in this shot. I am told that these colors are new to the area and due to pollution from the massive eastern cities in Asia.

LIFE is everywhere in Bali. And the people grow it. Where they don't grow it it get's grown. It is incredible what grows overthere and how many gardens are kept like this. Alot of people work very hard for little or nothing. They say you should bargin with the stores. I have a hard time doing that with a digital SLR arround my neck.

This is actually carved out of a hardwood stump completely removed. The roots carved into animals and things. An amazing work of art, I shot it in very very low light probably at 1600iso.

A jumping spider--I did not check if I allready put this in. If I did here it is again. Really, check out the pictures that can be found on the right hand side. This site from month to month shows how many posts I make--NOT how many pictures. There are over 500 pictures to see in the archive menu.

And then I got back home. Another candid moment. Just as I noticed my nighbors cat was tired of rolling in the grass--I captured this wide yawn. This looks down right--wierd?

A blast from the past. Soon the spot I took this picture at will be someone's living room. It came from a vacent lot that I used to go shoot pictures in. It's all gone now. It's too bad because it was easy for me to walk to. Somewhere in the archives a while back--there are several pictures of these interesting flowers. They are small and often I found insects living on them. I have no idea what they are.

It was a redish-yellow but clear morning here. But here I tweeked the saturation in RAW way up for effect and contrast. Those are seaguls flying in up the Columbia river. This was a very rare day here. Usually Mt. Adems is impossible to photograph well from here. It is a long ways away but too close for comfort. They've been saying it's going to blow up for a long time now. Things have changed alot since Mt. Saint Helens and all back in 1980, I am confident that things like harmonic termers that they now pick up with modern gear would give us a great advantage of warning should it erupt. But the fact is, many of our major cities were ill concived. It is a serious problem we will have to face in the next few 100 years. The places we have selected for many of our major cities world wide turned out to be really bad ideas. One of many things that are happening. Changes can only be made and things might get worse before they get better but I have hope for humankind. I gave up my dark view of the universe more then a couple of years ago now. If I was one of those crazy dudes holding a sign out on the street about the end of the world, my sign would say "The end already happened".

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