Thursday, September 30, 2010

Dog day

It rained steadily here all day (which we desperately needed, so no complaints here), which meant outdoor photography was pretty much a non-starter. However, I did stop by Mom and Dad's after work, enjoying a lovely dinner with them as well as my grandmother.

Anyway, what it all boils down to is this: you only get a few pictures again today, but the good news is that they're all of Kaylee:

Seriously, one of these days I have to bring Kaylee a new stuffed animal and some tasty treats to thank her for always being so photogenic...

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Water fall

Although it was beautiful outside today, circumstances prevented me from being able to get out and take pictures until fairly late in the day. In fact, the sun was almost below the horizon when I got back to Arlington, so I knew my options were getting more limited by the moment if I wanted to try and photograph foliage. I finally decided to head up East Arlington Road to see if anything caught my eye, figuring at the very least I could continue up Kelly Stand Road and take a stab at photographing the Roaring Branch again.

However, as it turned out I was able to get some river shots a bit closer to home. I stopped by this spot again when I noticed a bunch of leaves scattered along the rocks and thought, "Well, that's not too bad..."

Using my backpack to help stabilize my camera, I even managed a few decent shots with the aperture dialed down; as I've noted before, there's something about that water motion blur I just can't resist:

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Can't brain today—I have the dumb

My brain was feeling completely fried when I finally left work this evening, resulting in another minimalist day of photography from me. In fact, all I did was lock the front door of the office, put down my bag, pull out my camera, and take some shots of the museum gallery building against the foliage:

Once again, I find myself thanking autumn in Vermont for being so incredibly photo-friendly...

Monday, September 27, 2010

Rainy Monday

It was a pretty dreary day here, the kind where you want to spend the day curled up in a blanket on your couch with something warm to drink. I'm not complaining, because we desperately need the rain, but it also resulted in me not doing a whole lot in the way of photography. So, I just have a pair of images to post today.

I took this one at work late in the day; Yoshi was moving some flies from their original cases into archival boxes, and I was incredibly impressed by this particular exampl:

The second photo is simply a shot of a Junco and a Cardinal sitting on the feeders at Mom and Dad's; because of how dark it had gotten outside, it's actually the only bird photo I took while I was there that came out more or less in focus:

Unfortunately, the pictures I took of Kaylee were also too blurry to be worth sharing, but not blurry enough to be interesting in other ways. I'll try to make up for it the next time I stop by the house for a visit.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Blue blazes

As I got into my car to leave work this afternoon, I saw a Blue Jay swoop down to check out some corn stalks left over after we'd finished putting up our fall decorations. I got a kick out of watching it root around, then do a prairie dog imitation to make sure nothing had approached:

Successfully snagging a corn kernel:

Definitely a lucky shot here:

I then decided to head over to Whimsy Pond to photograph some more foliage:

I also decided to swing by Howell's before I called it a day, just to see what my photographic prospects might be. Unfortunately, the reeds are still far too tall for me to even think about photographing the birds on the pond itself. Fortunately, there was one bird hanging out across the pond that I did have a clear shot of:

That's also about the only good shot of the egret I managed to get; between the fading light and the distance involved, most of the others came out pretty blurry.

Finally, a photo I took under somewhat... unusual circumstances. I had just left work, and it wasn't long before I noticed there was something dangling underneath the chassis of the truck I was following. Once I'd assured myself that I was indeed seeing what I thought I was seeing, I naturally thought, "Man, I wish there was some way I could take a picture of that." Then I remembered that my camera was already out on my passenger seat, as I hadn't put it away after photographing the Blue Jay, and thought, "Well, why not give it a try?"

I'll spare you the details, as it's probably best not to dwell on how distracted I may or may not have been during the process. The most important thing is that I didn't hit anything or anyone. The second most important thing is that I actually did manage to take a single photo of the truck—and, miraculously enough, that one shot came out in pretty much in focus (don't forget—if you click on this or any photo you can see a larger version of the image):

I'm not going to pretend to have any sort of insight into the workings of the male mind, but still: do you really want the people who see you driving in your truck to immediately be associating you with blue balls?

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Food fights

As has happened so many times this year, me at Mom and Dad's + birds at the bird feeder = a bunch of photos. So, as usual, I'll just get right to it.

The Goldfinches were definitely feeling feisty today, to the point where seeing them sitting there eating peacefully became the exception rather than the norm:

Maybe they were trying to work out the proverbial pecking order?

A White-breasted Nuthatch and a Chickadee taking advantage of a rare finch-free moment on the feeder:

A Hairy Woodpecker:

I liked how this Mourning Dove looked against the dark background of trees:

We saw a young male Rose-breasted Grosbeak at the feeder again today:

There also seemed to be a lot of warbler activity; Mom and Greg believe they saw a Black-throated Blue Warbler earlier in the day, and Mom, Dad, and I saw at least two other types as we sat outside this afternoon. I'm not 100% certain what kind this particular warbler is, but after going through my bird book my best guess is that it's a Cape May Warbler:

A male Black-throated Green Warbler:

And a female of that same species:

It is with a heavy heart that I report these geese were indeed headed due south when I took this photo:

Kaylee's buddy Robby, a bit worn out from the walk he'd just been on with Kaylee, Mom, and his two people Colin and Pauline:

And, of course, the girl herself; I love it when she sits there and practically poses for me:

Friday, September 24, 2010

A taste of autumn

Today I had the opportunity to attend a taping of Cook's Country over in Rupert, Vermont. They weren't quite ready to let the audience in when we first got there, so I took a few pictures while we waited outside.

I'm not sure what birds these are perched on the steeple of the church across the street (although I suspect they're swallows), but I still liked the way the shot turned out.

Some of my fellow audience members hanging out on the porch:

Once we got inside, we were all given three samples of four different foods to taste test: long-grain white rice, black forest ham, reduced-fat potato chips, and yellow mustard—foods that had all previously been taste-tested by their group of 20 or so experts. Not exactly the type of food I'm looking to eat at 8 a.m., but what are you going to do? We all handed in our choices, and then they had Christopher Kimball come out and sample the same things we did to see if he would end up picking what the taste testers had deemed the best of its kind. I'm not entirely sure why we were also asked to put in our votes, to be honest—maybe to see if a smaller sampling of "regular" folks would also pick the taster's choices, and if we didn't then was our favorite the same as his?

At any rate, it was an interesting process to watch. However, it wasn't one I could photograph, as they didn't want any shutter noises interfering with the recording (not to mention flashes from cameras that don't provide the option of switching the flash off). So instead you get a shot I took as they switched setups for the different foods. That's Jack Bishop, co-host of the show and editorial director of Cooks Country magazine, in the apron; standing next to him is the director of the show, whose name has completely slipped my mind:

Filling out the rest of today's photo post, a few foliage shots I took later in the afternoon, starting with two group shots of some of the trees along Route 7A as it goes through town:

The church spire in these two belongs to the First Congregational Church in Manchester, one of the town's most recognizable landmarks:

The town's Revolutionary War memorial:

Which, as you can see, stands not too far from the church:

A solo shot of the tree behind the statue:

And a few shots looking up into that same tree:

I saved this one for last because I was struck by how it looks as much like a watercolor as it does a photo, at least to my eye; I promise, though, that the only Photoshop function I ran on this image was the one that reduced its size to something I could post online: