Sunday, July 25, 2010

Hit the Road

      The first leg from my home in Pennsylvania, took us to a hotel in Tennessee.  Of course this picture is in no way representative of the south, but I'll say this: Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg are frightening hives of tourist attractions (read: traps).  Neon lights, fiberglass dinosaurs, custom airbrushed t-shirts, and of course, Ripley's this and wax that, every possible angle to squeeze an extra couple of dollars out of the American tourist.  That is, the tourists in America.  In afterthought, it might've made for some pretty interesting photos if I was up for it.  Well, a smoky night on a strip of micro amusement after a long drive, and I'm one, two, three, four whole states away from home.  Can't complain with a roof over you and a pillow underneath.  If you're headed to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, hold your breath till you've past the last billboard and breathe that welcoming sigh of fresh mountain air at the Sugarlands welcome center.  
     I'm actually on my way out of St. Louis, but hopefully we'll fill in the gaps soon.  Good news, though: I've got this little laptop running again, and it's chugging out photos like a trooper.  Hopefully, some free wifi and a little I'm-tired-of-highway syndrome will find me looking through more photos.  

Look out Omaha, Nebraska.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Cooked Noodle - Tentacles

"The jellyfish’s tentacles look just like cooked noodles. The tentacles hang from underneath the jellyfish’s body. They can be as long as 1 cm to 120 feet long. That is longer than a basketball court!"
Jellyfish can be as small as a grape or as big as a bed. It depends on what kind of jellyfish it is. If it is a box jellyfish and it is full grown it will be 4 meters long. If it is an umbrella jellyfish and it is full grown then it will only be about 1 inch long.
"What happens when jellyfish get washed up to shore?
When jellyfish get washed up to shore they can’t get back in the water. If you spot one laying on the beach remember where you saw it. Go back the next day. Then you will find that the jellyfish has melted. When jellyfish melt, all there will be is some of its skin surrounding the jellyfish. The inside will have evaporated."
Photos: 6/13/2010



Remember being that small?  Feel grown up yet? Intend to?

Friday, July 16, 2010


Ok, here's one I didn't take, but I mean...
like, omg, wtf.
That's the cutest thing in the world

(the linked page will hurt your eyes, just look at the puppies and console yourself with the knowledge that CSS exists in most places)

Feed the Birds

    Living in South Central Pennsylvania is boring.  Spending high school away from home, and college even farther means most of the people you know don't live anywhere nearby.  Of course, living on a golf course rated an excellent place to retire doesn't do much for social life, either.  Well, what of it? I guess it's a bit of quiet, alone time.  Time to sit and look out the window.
    My parents have a bird feeder in the backyard (actually two), on a metal pole and staked into the ground.  Robins, bluejays, bluebirds, and an occasional cardinal, all pretty exciting really, but the squirrels and chipmunks make off with most of the loot. I'm guessing that's what this guy and his friend were after.  Adolescent great horned owls? They don't seem to have their horns yet and I don't think they usually travel in pairs; that's my guess. There was definitely an adult that lived around my backyard maybe 5 years ago. Any bird enthusiasts out there?  
Some things happening in the background; I'm thinking it's a couple of things.  Shooting through a window and screen distorts the bokeh/depth-of-field-blurring.  Here's an example salvaged from my facebook profile page a couple years ago (SF zoo, f/4).  You can see the mesh of the chain link fence pretty clearly.
I love tigers.
      That and I'm still getting the hang of this camera - I've left it on auto ISO most of the time.  I guess it would be good to figure out just how much weight that has shutter speed and aperture in their priority modes.  Really handy in full manual though.  I remember reading something about limiting it too (keep it from going too high).  Of course there's scaling and jpeg compression, too, both of which actually do a pretty nice job of covering up the noise,

     Anyhow, feel free to ignore the pseudo-technical babble and spend the "00:01:29 Avg. Time on Sitejust looking at the picters.  Or trying to leave. I mean, I guess it's unfortunate that a minute and a half is a long time to stare at a picture.

Anyhow, anyhow... Great horned owl?
nice arrow.


Summer Sun got you down? Check out the underground.
(it's cheesy, I know)

"The Wishing Well"
"Fried eggs"

Monday, July 5, 2010


Ok, not really, but wouldn't that be neat?

Some hot(bright), afternoon light vs. fading, evening light.


Just off Skyline Drive
Cross your eyes
Haha, ok that was painful, I know.  Too far apart, I think.  I'll work on it.
(I bet somebody somewhere has a technique for doing this really well)

Sunday, July 4, 2010


I met a duck. We were friends.


"The thing with studying invasive species is it's exciting to find them, but then not exciting as well because you really don't want them here"

Poor little shrimp


Wish I had more sky, or more ground, or a polarizing filter...
Anyhow, while we're in photoshop, who can resist inverting?
Shenandoah National Park, Skyline Drive, VA