Tag Archives: macro

A Red Poppy “Firework”

Poppy Red

Well, I have no patriotic images handy, so the bright red heart of this poppy will have to do, I guess.

I’ve been roaming the well-tended neighborhoods of Yakima around my sister’s home, marveling and photographing the beautiful flowers in bloom.  Eastern Washington is fantastic for the wealth of fruits, vegetables, and flowers that grow in that area.

I’ve been using only my point-and-shoot cameras for this trip, and this image was captured using the Olympus Tough TG-5.  I’m impressed with the camera but I sure wish it was more than just 12mp.  It is, however, relatively intuitive to use, which is great since a hard-copy owner manual is not included with the camera.

Happy 4th of July, folks!!

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

 

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Filed under Equipment, flowers, Holidays, July 4th, Olympus Tough TG-5, Photography

It’s Almost Year End

It is.  It’s almost the end of 2015 and I, for one, am ready for it to be done with.  Except for my boob job in January, it’s been a pretty shitty year I’ll admit.

N6A0653_Becky and Her Baby

My 89-year old mother became ill in early February and subsequently died on the 19th, one day prior to my elder sister’s birthday.  We can’t thank our lucky stars enough that we were both there to care for Mom at the end of it all.   From then on, life and work went to hell in a handbasket.  I’d break into tears every time I thought of Mom or thought of (or heard or saw) something that reminded me of Mom, My sister and I constantly second-guessed ourselves concerning Mom (woulda, coulda, shoulda).  I found myself working for a horrible boss who made my work life miserable.  I was not in the least interested in photography.  And my entire life revolved around being Executrix of Mom’s estate.

Poor Mom.  She thought she was leaving my sister and me with a nice little nest egg of her savings.  As it was, my sister and I spent every single penny of that nest-egg savings getting Mom’s house up to snuff so we could finally put it on the market; fingers crossed that this sale goes through smoothly so we can be done with it.  These upgrades included a total re-grade and re-sod of the entire front, back and side yards around the house (including the addition of what they call “French drains” to get the standing water to drain into the ditches around the house thanks to the horrid spring thunderstorms Texas constantly experienced all April and May); installation of more foundation pillars in the hallway; patching and repainting the cracks in the walls caused by the foundation work as well as the house’s normal settling issues here in southeast Texas; re-carpeting the hallway, one bedroom and the large den; getting the electrical issues worked out; installing a new roof to replace the one damaged by a freak April hailstorm; fixing the garage door, removing all of the high-tech hurricane storm shutters; and a number of other smaller issues  – all required by the home inspector’s and the structural engineer’s report and the current realtor’s suggestions to make the house more – well – salable.  This work has all taken two months shy of a year since Mom’s death.  It’s been an albatross around my neck and I can’t thank my sister’s husband enough for all of his help – his 30 years in the construction business has enabled me to keep from going mad and throttling most of the people and businesses within this horrid little Podunk Texas town in which I currently reside.  My experience this year has lead me to believe that there is absolutely no business here in this town that is totally trustworthy.  At least, not when it comes to dealing with a divorced, middle-aged woman such as myself.  Fuck ‘em all, I say.

As you can probably tell by now, this entire experience has given birth to the New Me:  Angry White Woman.

I don’t take shit off of anybody anymore and I’m far more vocal about my feelings, opinions and beliefs (this includes my political and non-religious leanings, much to many of my Facebook friends’ annoyance).  I have discovered I am also far more willing to stick my neck out at work and push back to the dirty politics I experience on behalf of myself and my friends who either cannot or will not push back themselves (it’s easier for me to do it since I’m close to early retirement and I don’t have a family for whom I must provide – this allows me to follow the courage of my convictions).

It’s taken me 54 years, and I’m absolutely certain Mom’s death was the catalyst to make me realize what is truly important in my life.  Hint:  it aint work.  Work is not my life and never has been – it just pays the bills, pays for my camera equipment and allows me to travel.  No, what is really important – to me – is family and people who love me.

Thanksgiving Dinner

I no longer have family here in Texas.  They all live out in the Pacific Northwest, and sooner rather than later, that is where I will move.  I am making my plans little by little.  I don’t want to grow old and spend my remaining days alone in a Texas nursing home, waiting to die, far away from people I love and who love me.  Besides that, I’ve never been a huge fan of Texas and am ready for the next adventure further west where the mountains and my family live.

I’m also trying to regain my photo mojo.  I’ve done a few small photo projects this year, including:

Storm Front On The Refuge

Portrait Of A Juvenile Yellow-Crowned Night HeronAnoleSpiny Backed Orb Weaver

Using my new 11-24mm, 100mm macro, and 500mm prime lenses at Brazos Bend State Park, Brazoria National Wildlife Refuge, and around my home and my mother’s home;

Jupiters Eye On The HelldiverWaiting For SunriseThe Rising Sun 2The Rising SunKnife Edge Fly ByAleutian P40K WarhawkGrumman TBF AvengerJapanese FighterTexas Raiders Taking Off

Spending a wonderful sunrise photo shoot as well as an entire day in the photo pit at the 2015 Wings Over Houston Airshow;

Pirate Spooks On Stage

Reaching Across The Stage For A Toast

Dessert At The Kings Feast

Preparing To Serve The Beef

Feast Staff 2015

Halloween Becky In The POW Pub

Pirate Spooks

A Witch And A Zombie

Performing my duties as staff photographer for The Merchant Prince and capturing images for his use out at the 2015 Texas Renaissance Festival;

A Crown For A Princess

Photographing my newest great niece whom I have never met until last year (for only 20 minutes before getting to the airport) and who is now almost 3 years old;

_83Q5951_83Q5973_83Q6720

And photographing my company’s annual gingerbread decorating event.

I haven’t really taken any photo holiday because almost all of my annual vacation days were spent caring for Mom and thereafter taking care of the estate.  I did take a short trip to visit my sister and her family in eastern Washington over Labor Day, spent a weekend in Santa Fe NM during the Memorial Day holiday, and visited my sister and her family, again, during Thanksgiving.

My main vacation is coming up and I hope it will be the jump start to much more photography in 2016:  I’m going to be spending 10 days in Europe (including Christmas and New Year):  8 days in London and 2 days in Paris.  Everything is paid for, I printed out all of my tickets, and I am all packed, including my camera backpack:

  • Canon 5DS body
  • Canon 5DS-R body
  • Canon 1DX body
  • Canon 11-24mm lens
  • Canon 24-105mm IS lens
  • Canon 24-70mm IS lens
  • Tripod, a gazillion memory cards, a small Canon flash, a couple of wireless shutter releases, and lots of extra, fully-charged batteries

I’m not taking my 70-200mm lens because it’s heavy and my backpack is already heavy enough (plus I’m taking two suitcases as well as my laptop bag with travel laptop, mouse, memory card readers, 2 external hard drives – 1 TB each, iPhone, iPad, book, and folder with all of my ticket information for the various venues I will attend).  I can only take so much – don’t even ask me what I’ve packed in the suitcases (grin).

I apologize for not publishing more blog posts.  I know one is supposed to do that to keep readership and to keep one’s writing skills in tip-top shape.  I’ll get back into the groove, I promise.  I’ll have free WiFi in my London and Paris hotels, so I know I’ll be editing photos and writing about my experiences, uploading to both my Facebook photography page as well as my Twitter account.  I may even publish a post while there.  For now, stay tuned to forthcoming imagery from my 2015 trip, as well as the trips I have planned for 2016.  I plan on making up for lost time.

N6A3701_Seahawks Becky Cap

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Filed under 1DX, 5DS, Attitude, Aviation, birds, Brazoria NWR, Brazos Bend State Park, Canon, Canon 11-24mm, Canon Lens, Equipment, Landscape, Life, macro, nature, Photography, Texas, wildlife, Wildlife Refuge

A Spiny-Backed Orb Weaver, A Canon 1DX, A Canon 5DS, And A Canon 100mm f2.8L Macro

I saw this lovely little orb weaver in the middle of it’s web one day and decided to try out my new Canon 100mm macro lens with a couple of different cameras.

Spiny Backed Orb Weaver

Taken with the Canon 1DX

Spiny Backed Orb Weaver 2

Taken with the Canon 5DS

 

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Filed under 1DX, 5DS, Camera Comparisons, Canon, Equipment, Photography

A Canon 5DS, A 100mm Macro Lens, and an Anole Lizard in Southeast Texas

Anole

I recently splurged and purchased a Canon 5DS (50 mp, baby!) and Canon 100mm f2.8L macro lens.  I’m trying to regain the photo mojo I feel I’ve lost since my mother’s death this past February.  Her passing, plus being stuck in southeast Texas for the hot, humid summer, has enervated my photographic instincts.  So, when I saw a couple of anole lizards having sex on the wall next to the back door of my mother’s house, I trotted back to my apartment (I live next door) to grab camera and lens to capture the moment (yeah, lizard porn).  By the time I returned to the house, the two had gone their separate ways.  I instead, turned my camera onto this little lizard trying to blend in with the black, rust and green colors on the wrought-iron fence.

Little Green Lizard

Anole lizards are beautiful little creatures anywhere from 2″ – 6″ in length, from snout to tail tip.  Normally, they are a brilliant, almost-neon, green hue.  But, when they feel threatened (and who wouldn’t if a large camera and lens combo was bearing down you), they change color like a chameleon to blend in with the surroundings.

Matching The Colors Of The Fence

I haven’t used my new camera or new lenses (yes, plural) much … yet … but this is a start.  I am blown away by the detail this latest Canon addition provides.  Not the fastest thing on the market concerning fps (frames per second), but the shutter click is much quieter than the 5D Mk II (and definitely quieter than the 1DX), and has a really nice feel to it.  It does take up more space on the memory card, so I’ll have to invest in a few with more GB (32, 128).  But, from what I have seen thus far out of my camera, it’s all worth it.

Anole Lizard In The Sun

Can’t wait to try it out when I travel to Santa Fe, NM for the long Labor Day holiday weekend in September.

 

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Filed under 5DS, Canon, Equipment, lizard, macro

Pink Edges

Pink Edges

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June 17, 2014 · 6:35 pm

“Super Close-Up” Shots in a National Park

The National Parks Traveler just published my latest article in their photography column.  It’s titled “Photography in the National Parks:  Make it a Macro Kind of Day” and deals with getting super close-ups using a macro lens or a macro-type gizmo.  It’s a short, fun article.  Check it out!

Forest Floor Colors

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Filed under Canon Lens, Close-Up Lens Filter, Equipment, National Parks, Photography

Christmas Fun with the Canon 250D Close-Up Lens Filter

Pirate Nutcracker Ornament

I recently received my December 2013 edition of Photoshop User.  Within that edition is their “Gonzo Holiday Gear Guide”.  Naturally that was the first thing I turned to upon opening up the magazine.

Jingle Bells

The Canon close-up lens filters were items reviewed in this gear guide.  These can be used for a Canon or Nikkor lenses.  It mentioned how fun these little items were and compared to a real dedicated macro lens, they can be purchased at a fraction of the cost.  So I figured, why not?

Snowflake Ornament

These filters come in several thread sizes, and there are actually two different filters.  The 250D (which is what I ordered) is good for focal lengths of between 30 – 135mm, while the 500D is good for focal lengths of 70 – 300mm.

On Camera

I affixed the close-up lens filter to my Canon 40mm lens to create a light, easy to carry, pseudo-macro lens which I then used to photograph ornaments on my Christmas tree.

All of the images you see of the ornaments in this blog post are totally un-cropped, so this should give you an idea of just how close I can maneuver my camera and lens to get these shots.  Mind you, the depth of field (DOF) is pretty shallow (as you can see) and no, it’s not a dedicated macro.  But, for what is essentially a magnifying glass (utilizing pretty good glass) that is light to use, easy to affix, easy to pack into a gear bag, and produces pretty darned good close up images, I’d say my $87 (this includes 2-day shipping) was well-spent.  It’s going with me on my forthcoming December road trip to Big Bend National Park.

Christmas Ball Reflection

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Filed under Christsmas, Close-Up Lens Filter, Equipment, Holidays, Photography