I get up at 5am on Thursday with the intention on heading to work early so I can get some extra work done. I think this is a great plan. Off I head to work about 6:15 am. The church where I work is positioned at the edge of town where there are some nice rolling hills. The fog is still rolling around in the lower elevations and looks pretty amazing as the sun begins to rise. This all creates a beautiful landscape that is begging to be photographed.
I arrived at the parking lot arguing with my self, ultimately, my inner shutterbug wins. I depart for a site I have taken many pictures, the Kansas River boat access in Topeka just west of the Governors mansion.
Below is one of my favorite shots from that September 8th morning. Below that is a video montage I shot as well.
For my day off, I spent the morning at Shawnee Lake taking pictures of various birds in-between some morning showers. A gaggle of geese landed just a few dozen yards from me and had to shake off the water upon exiting the lake. I had a great time and shot some nice shots, which you can see at http://photos.wyattjohnston.com
|| Nikon D7000 | 1/160 | f/8 | 800mm | ISO 1600||
If you read my blog, you may be tired of these three topics. I apologize, but too bad. Something in the air tonight just made evening shots work. The moon was very bright and crisp. The sky was clear and warm. I have three images for tonights posting.
1 – Moon. 3.
|| Nikon D7000 | 1/400 | f/11 | 800mm | ISO 500 ||
2 – Westar’s Jeffery Energy Center (25.6 miles from shooting location)
|| Nikon D7000 | 1/1.3 | f/5.6 | 800mm | ISO 800 || -Closeup Shot
|| Nikon D7000 | 1/8 | f/10 | 55mm | ISO 800 || -Wide Shot
Since I got my x2 Teleconverter, I have wanted to shoot the moon again. I learned a few things that I had not realized much with using my 400mm by it self. At 800mm the moon is huge, even not being a full moon. Also, at 800mm every movement is exaggerated. Even my camera strap swaying was causing the moon to shift in the view finder significantly.
I used a 10 second delay on the shutter, dropped my tripod extension to the base to help shake, and removed the strap. Even with all that, the SHUTTER movement caused it to shake. My personal tripod is, um, not of the greatest quality, I may try this shot again on a full moon with the tripod from work, it is much stronger (ie heavier)
The moon was setting in the westerly sky, some distant clouds added a nice texture in front of the moon.
|| Nikon D7000 | 2 second | f/16 | 800mm | ISO 500 ||
I am not a bird watcher, my mother is however. This morning I was driving to work and made a little side trip to the fledgling little subdivision behind the theaters to snap a picture of Jeffery Energy Center using my new 2x teleconverter and my 400mm lens. While there I saw some birds about 50 yards away looking colorful, so I snapped one.
My concerns about the teleconverter stealing color and clarity appear to be somewhat disproved by this and other shots today. Here is the bird. I know not what it’s name is, other than just pretty bird.
|| Nikon D7000 | 1/320 | f16 | 400mm + x2 teleconverter (800mm) | ISO 800 ||
I also took another fun 50mm vs. 800mm shot. This is Jeffery energy center situated 25 miles from my shooting location. The top picture is the 50mm shot. The plant is very hard to see, look for the small cloud and dark spot on the edge of the horizon. The bottom picture is the 800mm shot of the plant. Neither has any cropping to it, this is the shot as taken. The picture is not great, but 25 miles of air space may just to that. I tried to remove as much of the haze as possible, which negatively impacted the colors a bit, but made the power plant more visible
The other thing that is interesting is scale. The power plant at 800mm 25 miles away fills way more screen than the bird located a few dozen yards away in the picture above.
I had the privilege of spending several hours with the Pyrotechnics crew for the largest public fireworks display in the area, The 2011 Spirit of Kansas Fireworks show at Lake Shawnee.
I have posted my images on my gallery site, so head over and have a look! http://photos.wyattjohnston.com
Kyle Gregory Thomas.
Most people have someone they remember on memorial day. I have many people remember this day, but only one serviceman that I knew well. Kyle, his brother Craig, and his parents were a key element in my life growing up. I won’t go into details here, but you can read my story here if your interested.
Kyle led an extraordinary life, experiencing more in 23 years than most people do in an entire lifetime. He built homes, worked a farm, danced professional ballet, and jumped out of perfectly fine airplanes. A natural born outdoors man, he loved camping, fishing, hunting, and just enjoying the great outdoors. Kyle never met someone he could not call friend, and brought life to those he came into contact with. He was married shortly before he deployed. He is missed to this day, but I take joy in remembering him for his part in making me the man I am today.
Kyle’s obituary can be found here.
Additional websites referencing Kyle:
Here is a picture collage that was assembled shortly after Kyle’s death using pictures that Kyle had. Inside his helmet on the right picture you can make out the outline of a picture. It is of his wife Cari. (click to enlarge)
Here is today’s picture of the day from his graveside. Kyle is no longer here in soul, he is in heaven. The graveside is simply a place for loved ones to visit and remember those who have left earth before us. God Bless all those who serve in our armed services. We would not have our rights and freedom without their bravery and dedication to service.
camera :: Nikon D7000 | 1/640′s second shutter | ISO 500 | Meter: Spot
lens :: Nikkor 50mm prime 1.8 | set at f/13 | AF-A Auto
flash :: unused