Category Archives: Close Up

Rainy Day Buds and Flowers

I made the first photo out of one of the upper level windows in our home as it was raining fairly hard outside. I liked the way the rain drops were forming on newly opened tree buds, soon to turn into nice green leaves. After the rain stopped, I went out in the front yard and took the last two shots of small, but very beautiful, Grape Hyacinth flowers which pretty much grow wild all over our yard at this time of year. The ones seen here are underneath our street-side mailbox, in the middle of a smooth, colorful river-rock garden. I wanted to capture the wet, smooth appearance of the rocks in the background behind the purple flowers, each flower bunch being about 1-2 inch high. To get that look, I used my telephoto lens and stood far enough back to keep the flowers in sharp focus, and to make the background blurred. In photography circles, that effect is called “bokeh”, from the Japanese word “boke” which means blur. It’s pronounced as follows: Bo (as in bow), Ke (as in the first part of kettle). Pronounced as two separate words, “Bo Ke.” So now you’ve learned some photo community trivia.





Posted by on April 9, 2014 in Close Up, Flowers




One common subject I focused on during a recent photo trip. “Lines.”






Spring in Bloom … almost

One day it’s near 70 degrees and I see many signs of spring season in bloom. Then, winter sticks its head back out, hopefully only for a brief moment. Perhaps my photos here will warm your heart no matter where you are. By the way, the two Pansies you see here made it through this very cold and snowy winter in our back yard. Also, the Bradford Pear Trees shown here have a way to go yet, but are indeed trying to push winter aside.





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Posted by on March 23, 2014 in Close Up, Flowers



Lighting the Way

Seen below are “lights” which illuminate the way into many homes and business today, just as they have done for centuries. When I see one I like I typically look for others. This day I found two which I felt had some photographic interest. Composition is important for these type images. Get close and make sure your camera is focused and exposed correctly. But, most important is to make the photo tell a story by itself if at all possible.




Looking for Colors

I often like to pick a specific subject when I look for nice things to photograph. Sometimes it’s old buildings, signs, doors and windows, landscapes, or people and animals. On my last photo trip I was looking for “colors.” I was lucky because I found lots of nice colorful images. Here are the best ones. Sometimes “luck” helps, as in the case of the pigeon and the balloons. Enjoy!












Street Walker

I’ve written before that when you are walking around with your camera, especially on streets in towns and cities, there are lots of interesting objects or scenes to photograph besides the typical tourist shots. Just use your imagination. It works for me anyway. Here are several examples recently made in Uptown Martinsville, Virginia. The “face profile” image is in fact a section of a stucco wall that had fallen off. I also thought the unique “hand” door knocker was pretty neat. Never seen one like this before. Caught my eye. Try your hand at making your own different images.








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Posted by on March 1, 2014 in America's Past, Close Up


Nature’s Beauty

I can’t help but marvel at the beauty I often find in simple, close-up compositions of various photographic subjects I find in nature. God’s handiwork for sure. My point is that when you go about with your camera in hand or pocket, whether it be your mobile phone or a traditional model, look for compositions that others might overlook in their haste to move along or to find some spectacular view of a majestic landscape or the warm feelings conveyed by a setting or rising sun. Be different! There are many, many possible images just waiting for someone like you to record them for posterity — or your Facebook page. Here are some examples I made recently.




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Posted by on February 27, 2014 in Artistic and Creative, Close Up


Window Shopping

I enjoy wandering our relatively small and somewhat struggling city center of Martinsville, VA adjacent to where we live, and making photos of items in store windows and store fronts. It’s interesting to note that Martinsville was, until the late 1980s, a primary “economic engine” for the Commonwealth of Virginia. With the demise of American manufacturing over the years, especially textiles and furniture, given that cheaper goods are available from off-shore resources, cities like ours have struggled. Many, like here, are seeking ways to make their business districts more vibrant and that brings out ingenuity of store owners to attract customers. But, economics and government policies are not my focus here, photos are. The main challenge faced when making photos through store window glass is the angle of the sun and reflections, much less dirty glass. So, picking the right time of day is important. Anyway, as I walk along, my eyes are always roving to see what I can find. Colors, shapes, interesting items, etc. Here are some examples I made recently.






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Sometimes it’s nice to have a main subject before you go out with your camera. In this case, I did not discover the “subject” until after I looked at some of my images made recently on my computer screen during post processing. “Keys!”




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Posted by on February 21, 2014 in America's Past, Close Up



Treasures Found in Alaska

In conclusion of my continuing series of photos made during a visit to Alaska and the Bering Sea, I’d like to present several close-up images of things I saw that hopefully will make you smile.

Bering Sea-38-4

Bering Sea-32-5

Bering Sea-45-5

Bering Sea-28-5

Bering Sea-41-5

Bering Sea-56-4

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Posted by on February 19, 2014 in Close Up, Landscape, Wildlife




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