Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Birds on a Wire

On our beach walk there was a whole flock of these Redpolls that landed on the fence near where we were walking.  My camera has "Single Point Spot" focusing for "pin-point" focusing so I was able to focus on the birds for once! When they are this far away, I used to have to focus on the post and hope the bird would also be in focus as the camera couldn't find such a small object.  Yay for the new camera.  :)

Monday, November 26, 2012


A friend of mine is the "official" photographer for the U of L Pronghorn Basketball Team.  Official is in quotes because they don't actually pay her.  She does it all voluntarily because she loves the sport and her nephew also happens to play on the men's team.  Wow.  What a lot of work for her, but I'm glad she is doing something she loves.  I hooked up with her on Saturday night to photograph a couple of games.

I have to say, it is HARD to photograph basketball.  As with any subject there is a huge learning curve and it is obvious I am at the bottom.  I spent the first half of the women's game just trying to figure out what the heck I should do.  Should I try and follow the ball?  Should I try and follow a certain player? Should I try and just stay focused close to the net and wait for the action to wander into my frame?  Ugh.  Nothing seemed to get any decent results.  I floundered around and in the end, I tried to stay with the ball for the most part.  I started to figure out a bit of a rhythm but it was painful.  

I learned a few things pretty quickly: 
  1. Nobody smiles when playing basketball and catching even a non-weird expression on their face is tough.  Many shots were toast just because they were so unflattering, although they were entertaining. :)  We are not pretty when we run.  LOL
  2. Pictures of the ball bouncing look really weird if the ball is on the ground or even halfway between the ground and their hand.  It definitely needs to be touching their hand for it to not look like it is just oddly floating.
  3. Ref's and other players get in the way.  A LOT.
  4. When they reach up to shoot, they are usually blocking their face with their arms or the ball.
  5. While I didn't find the men's game any more entertaining than the women's it was easier to photograph.  Part of that was because I'd had a bit of practice by the time the men played, but most of it was because it was faster paced.  The pace made the players more spread out and they didn't pass the ball around as much so it was way easier to follow.  Surprisingly it was actually more predictable.

I could see myself doing this again some time.  It was fun.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

The Cake

Amanda made carrot cupcakes with peanut butter icing for the pups.  To say that they enjoyed it would be an understatement.

But first they had to put on their party hats.  They were thrilled.

Amanda cheered them up by giving them a taster. You've got a little peanut butter on your chin there Lacey.

Once we placed the cupcakes in front of them but ask them to stay, neither of them could bring themselves to even look at them.

Finally they were given the OK.

Lacey was a total glutton.  Popped the whole thing in and swallowed it down.

Vito painstakingly licked the icing off.

He was slow and methodical until Lacey finished hers and started to move in on his... then he really started to hustle.

Partying is serious business.

MORE cake.  This one came with candles. We forgot the matches, but I think that was a good thing.

Has there ever been a cuter birthday boy?

And I'll leave you with the "drunken" (aka full belly) after party picture.

Thanks for inviting us to your party Vito!  We had fun.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Happy Birthday Vito!

Today is Vito's 6th Birthday.  So to celebrate, Amanda invited Lacey and I on a walk.  Coulee and Vito aren't "friends" so she stayed at home.  (It isn't that they don't get along, they just don't play together.)

We went to the beach which as you know, means I took a lot of photos.  So I decided to break it into two blog posts - pre and post cake.  This is pre-cake.  :)

It wasn't as cold as it looks.  The edges were frozen, there was snow on the ground, the sky was grey, but it was only around -2 C.

Those would be ice chunks in the lake.  Vito was very brave.

I happened to have two squeaky balls in my pocket that I sometimes use to get dogs' attention for photos.  Vito and Lacey were both pretty happy to have one all to themselves.

We finally had to take the balls back so they would actually play with each other. LOL

Vito has way more stamina than Lacey, but they were both ready for cake by the end.  That's coming up tomorrow.