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One photo a day challenge: Day 103.

I get up early every morning so that I will have time to accomplish two things before I have to go to work. Most days I want to get a workout in. And every day I also want to get into my home office and work on photography projects.

However, spending the morning in the home office can have a cost. If I am in the office I am not taking photographs. This doesn’t matter so much during the times of year when the sun isn’t even up yet. But as the seasons change and the sun rises earlier and earlier in the morning the potential downsides increase.

Early morning can present some beautiful moments to create photographs. Today I was at my desk working on uploading images when my wife woke up and said that the light outside was beautiful.

Our bedroom has windows that face east. She was waking up to a beautiful sunrise. A sunrise that I would have completely missed if she had not alerted me to it.

I was not facing any windows. I was facing a couple of computer monitors. Getting to work on a different aspect of photography. That is the biggest challenge in photography. Everything you do has trade offs.

As I talked about in my photography class today, using one camera setting over another has trade offs. Working on one aspect of photography means that there is something else that you are not working on.

I taught a photography class after work today and if it hadn’t been for this sunrise I am not sure what I would have photographed to share with you today. Because I was teaching a class, I was not taking photos. The trade off.

Sunrise. Upstate, New York.

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One photo a day challenge: Day 102.

The gloominess and rain continued throughout the day today. With the weather less than ideal for what I typically consider my ideal photography I wasn’t sure what I would photograph.

However, as a photographer one thing you eventually learn is weather is your friend. Weather is always your friend. You just might not see it in the moment.

It might often seem like weather is your enemy. Weather might spoil your plans. The weather might make it difficult to create the type of photography you are planning for the day.

But despite all that, weather is still your friend. Weather is your friend because different types of weather impart different conditions. And all conditions are good for some type of photography.

The current weather might not be good for the photography you hoped to be creating today, but if you adjust your plans to align with the weather you will be best friends.

The dull light from the overcast skies and the rain helped me create this photograph. The rain obviously left the water droplets on the flower. The dim light helped bring out more detail in the flower because there wasn’t any harsh glare from direct light.

The bright light can create too much contrast between the bright yellow flower and the dark green grass. It can be difficult to capture all the detail.

The storm. The clouds. The rain. They are my friend today.

Raindrops on Daffodil.

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One photo a day challenge: Day 101.

I spent the winter trying to keep some of the flowers I planted in pots last spring and summer alive. It is unclear how many have survived. But there are some that are clearly showing signs of life.

Some plants are beginning to grow new stems and leaves.

Two plants that are of the same variety seem to be doing particularly well.

This Gerbera Daisy specifically is growing well and even has multiple flower heads growing. Hopefully they will continue to grow and bloom soon.

This particular plant I have successfully overwintered in my house for at least a couple of seasons.

I wonder how long I can keep the same plant alive that is not meant to survive the winter in our climate here in upstate, New York?

Gerbera Daisy.

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One photo a day challenge: Day 100.

I spent this morning at one of our local parks hoping to photograph migratory birds that tend to show up around this time of year each year.

Unfortunately, the migratory birds did not make an appearance today. Hopefully I will see them soon.

So, no migratory bird photos or observations. But a day outside enjoying some fresh air, nature, and watching some birds is still a good way to spend some time.

Since there were none of the specific birds I was hoping to photograph I tried to be more selective with what photos I took. I wanted to try to take photos that were a little different. And I think I took fewer photos that I have on a photo outing maybe ever.

But what that allowed me to do was just look around and observe and be patient. Then I saw something that caught my eye and just seemed a little different.

A typical photo of a duck features a duck on the water or maybe sitting on the shore. But I saw this mallard standing like he was posing for me in front of this half dead tree and I thought there’s something you don’t see every day. I liked the idea of a mallard standing in front of a tree so that the whole background was a tree trunk.

I don’t know if this is the best photo I could have made, but I do think it is a little bit different and a little bit interesting. What do you think?

Mallard.

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One photo a day challenge: Day 99.

Today I was able to visit a place I really enjoy. And the funny part is I have been here plenty and its always a good time. But somehow I am not sure I have ever come here specifically for photography.

Spencer Crest

Today I spent time on the trails at Spencer Crest Nature Center. I just meandered around and absorbed the nature.

My initial thought was to check out the pond and see if there were any unusual water fowl to photograph. No luck there. It was too overcast and not bright enough in the woods for good opportunities to photograph birds in the woods.

However, what a cloudy overcast sky is good for is photographing woodland landscapes. Especially when it is mid day. The cloud cover disperses the light and creates much softer light instead of harsh shadows.

I have really been drawn to photographing tree trunks lately. I love the patterns and textures. It is especially interesting when the tree is combined with other forms of nature. The possibilities for photography are endless.

I really like the look with a shallow depth of field. Today I used my Nikon 50mm at f1.8. Crisp and sharp on the subject and completely out of focus on the background.

Gear

An added bonus for today was time getting used to my new gear set up from Peak Design. Today I made use of the Everyday Backpack, the Clutch, and the Capture Clip today.

I actually enjoyed using the Clutch much more than I thought I would to carry my Nikon D300S with battery grip using the 50mm lens. It was perfect for meandering through the woods but still having the camera ready for photos whenever I wanted. Then I could just clip in to Capture for more rugged hiking conditions.

I am looking forward to getting back to Spencer Crest later this year.

Spencer Crest Nature Center

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One photo a day challenge: Day 98.

I finally got around to visiting a place that I have been wanting to visit for a few years now.

I was unaware of this place existing until the past few years. It’s so close to me yet remained invisible.

I heard of it because I saw that a trail race was being put on there.

I haven’t been able to run the race yet, but I am hoping to in the future.

It was a very brief introduction, but I am looking forward to more exploration.

Nice to meet you, Oakley Corners Stat Forest.

Oakley Corners State Forest.

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One photo a day challenge: Day 97.

I love plants and flowers. But I am never very successful with keeping house plants alive.

Maybe I am not good at following directions. Perhaps I am just not attentive enough. Or I may just not pay close enough attention.

Taking care of a house plant seems so simple on its face. But there does need to be a degree of attention paid. I need to be able to observe and notice what is happening with the plants on a regular basis. Not my strong suit.

I tend to under water and then over correct or vice versa. I am not good at subtle easy regular maintenance. I do better with projects taht requirte one big effort and then you are done.

Sustained work. A little bit at a time. Building, sustaining something over the long term. That is much harder.

New Orchid Flower

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One photo a day challenge: Day 96.

I really wanted to get outside and enjoy the day today after spending the day staring at a computer screen. It’s my birthday and I figured I deserved to get out and enjoy some nature.

Not too many hours left in the day after work but we made the best of it.

I wanted to drive up to Ithaca and visit the Cornell Botanical Gardens. With all the warm weather lately I figured some flowers should be blooming by now.

I also wanted to relax at one of the nice scenic spots there and watch the sun set. It ended up getting pretty cloudy which blocked out most of the sunset.

It was still a beautiful, enjoyable, relaxing evening. Just what I was hoping for.

Sunset view.

One photo a day challenge: Day 95.

It is a beautiful day.

I walked around the yard just to see how spring was progressing.

Green is emerging from more and more places. Places it has been hidden away for the winter. Hidden for the winter but not hidden forever.

Now. Now the green life of spring is making its return.

More green. More growth. Life reemerging in even more places.

And best of all were these daffodils now beginning to bloom. We didn’t even plant these. We have no idea how they got there.

Hopefully this is the sign that there will be regular new opportunities for flowers and growth to photograph.

Spring Daffodils.

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One photo a day challenge: Day 94.

Today I took the day off from just about everything. I just needed to.

But fortunately we had great spring weather and I was able to go visit with my family outside for Easter.

Beautiful weather.

So nice to see veryone.

Eating yummy food.

Taking photos.

Good Day.

Fishnets May Be Required.

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