Having a wonderful time… wish you were here!

Beware of the “killer” ostrich!
As he approached the car, all windows went up in unison! (Photo by Fay)

You got it Melanie!
(Photo by Debbie)

We recently visited Fossil Rim Wildlife Center in Glen Rose, Texas.

“It is made up of 1,700 acres where 1,100 animals roam freely in large pastures, in near natural conditions.  The animals are managed this way so that they can behave, socialize, and reproduce, much as they would if in the wild.  Many of the species you will see represent extinct in the wild, endangered or dwindling populations that require cooperative efforts to ensure their survival.”

The drive is 9.5 miles long and takes an average of 3 hours to complete.

Melanie, Tess and Debbie having fun at Fossil Rim.

Fossil Rim is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.


Certified Crazy Woman!

Lorraine is certified crazy!

OK… we will be featuring all the club members on this blog and today I choose to feature Lorraine.

Lorraine has been a tele tech for many years at our hospital working the night shift.  She keeps things in order and watches heart rhythms throughout the shift.  She is conscientious and cares deeply about her job and her co-workers.

She’s a quiet gal… that is, until you get to know her!  It is quite obvious by this photo that Lorraine indeed has another life outside the hospital.  Who knew that she hangs from a Lyre Hoop in her spare time?  And exactly why would anyone WANT to hang by a Lyre Hoop in their spare time?

She tells us that the hoop can also spin.  So how should we best shoot it… to catch the motion or stop the motion ?

Thank goodness she has found better things to do with her time!  Lorraine is new to photography and eager to learn.  And by the way… don’t tell her husband that she may be interested in another camera!  (Shhhhh!  That’s our secret!)

Welcome to the CWPC, Lorraine!

With special thanks to Mike, Lorraine’s husband, for providing us with this unique image of Lorraine in action!

A monthly challenge…

Photo by Fay

Just a thought… wondering if you might enjoy doing a monthly challenge, that way, those of you who are unable to join us on outings might have the opportunity to show us what you are shooting.

Since we are coming up to a new month, I thought we could start with a July challenge:  Shoot What You Love!

This is a wide open competition.  It could include most anything… your kids, your pet, flowers, food, white clouds in a blue sky… you get the idea.

Put some thought into it.  Ask yourself… what am I taking a picture of?  Sounds pretty basic doesn’t it?  But sometimes we tend to include too much in a photo.  Sometimes the background can be distracting or the light too harsh.  You certainly want your subject in focus… that means, be very steady as you take the shot.  You might even want to hold your breath to prevent unnecessary movement as the photo is taken.  And take more than one shot.  It’s amazing how one will be a little different than the next.  Perhaps one a little sharper or the composition might change.  View your results with a critical eye.  If you don’t like it, re-shoot it.  Maybe from a different perspective… from above, behind, beneath… you be the judge.  Not enough impact?… get a little closer.

Look at some of the photos in “Favorite Photo Sites”.  Find a photo you like and then try to shoot something similar in style.

If you understand aperture priority  (get your books out and read about your camera settings) you might want to change that to see how that impacts your photo by changing the depth of field.  It will vary how much of your image is in focus.  The higher the number of the F-stop, the more that will be in focus, and vice-versa.

The deadline for entry will be July 14th.  E-mail your entries to me.  One entry per member will be posted and open for critique by all members.

And with your submission, include why you chose that subject and why you like the image.

Good luck… and happy shooting the things you love!

Wandering in the garden…

After the rain…

“That frog was my ever first achievement to photography world and I will treasure it for life and thanks to my very good teacher.”        Tess

 Thanks Tess for these great photos!

Tess… the mess

Tess was the first member to join the club and has become the membership chairwoman as she has contacts with everyone at work and has done an admirable job of spreading the word about the CWPC.  And yes, she is “certified” crazy!

She is new to photography and just purchased her first digital SLR camera (Canon) at the beginning of 2012.  It did not take her long to become obsessed with the pastime.  Everyday she would send me more photos.  Her enthusiasm was contagious!  She must have been hanging around Lala (that’s me) too long, because then she starting shooting her food.  And then butterflies… and then bugs.  And you know what that means… “gotta have a new lens!”.  So now she is into macro.

She is extremely observant and will spot a little critter before anyone else.  I have seen her photography improve dramatically over the past five months.

She is now shooting in RAW and processing in Lightroom.  It has not taken her long to find her path to excellence!

Way to go, Tess!  Keep up the good work!


The happy lizard…

The Happy Anole
(Photo by Fay… a.k.a. Lala)

Tess was the “eagle-eye” who spotted this lizard on an evergreen bush, and then when we looked a little closer we found lots of lizards… five or six lizards sunning themselves. You should have heard the clicks as we started shooting and following them around the bush.

This shot was captured using a telephoto lens.  The image was sharp enough that it could be cropped to get in a little closer.  The telephoto lens was helpful to keep distance between the photographer and the lizard; thereby, not scaring him away.   Notice also the shallow depth of field… the lizard is sharp but the background is soft and blurred making the subject stand out.

Let’s go to the Dallas Arboretum!

May 9, 2012

We were excited.  Tess, Gina and I were going for our first outing to the Dallas Arboretum.

I sent a memo out as a reminder the night before to charge the batteries, clear a memory card and to pack a lunch.  We would meet at my place at 8:30AM and head to the arboretum, but that morning when I awoke… it was raining… and raining hard!  Oh no!  After listening to the weather report, we decided that the trip was still a go.  The sun was to return by noontime, so we headed out in the pouring down rain.

Lesson #1  Photography in the rain can be beautiful… soft diffused light, droplets of rain on the flower petals.  YES!

We were psyched.  We sat undercover as we ate an early lunch and waited for the rain to stop, and yes, by 11AM it had stopped raining and our CWPC adventure had begun.