Monday, July 28, 2008

My Kids Do Listen To Me

After all these years of asking for things to be tidied up, computers to be logged off, teeth to be brushed now, I was beginning to think the kids never listened to me.

This morning at breakfast I saw a Lego cannon mounted by using a couple of 2x1 brick with a + axle hole and some 2 stud length axles. I commented on how they made a good red cross.

When I got home tonight I found this cute 1980's looking ambulance on the dining table.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Factory Gate

I passed this factory the other day, and was impressed by the shadows on their turnstiles. I just had to conspire to pass by at the same time of day with the camera.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Silicon Valley or Sodium Valley?

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This is a satellite view of Silicon Valley, actually it is the salt evaporation basins in the Fremont area, on the shoreline of San Francisco Bay.

I like the green ponds, they seem to be brushed in.

If you click on the "View Larger" you will see a splash of lime green, look carefully and you will see that part of the image was taken at a different time, half that pond is white.

If you soom out you will see a different set of images, here you can see the ponds are flooded with bay water, and the salt coloration is not as vivid.

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I wonder if there is a Google Earth chronological view, where you can go back in time.

One of those smiles

You ever fall on the receiving end of a great smile? Or at least get caught in it's radiance?

Today I got caught in a smile.

Heading down the freeway, I was in lane three, and in lane four I saw an older Jimmy catching a pick up. So as not to be in the way when the Jimmy overtook I pulled out a lane. Hey, it was a slight upgrade, and the SUV was pulling a trailer.

Anyway, as I was about level I glanced across, so if he knew it was safe to pull put, and there in the back window was a very nice smile, an ear to ear beaming of joy; the look of the first day of vacation, being on the open road with the windows open.

I see great smiles all the time, just sometimes they catch you unawares, when you least expect them, that's when you feel them the most.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

An Interesting Thought

I found this doodle in my 10 year old's school book. Never thought about it like that before.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Time to be fit

Well, for the last year I've been blaming schedule on my lack of exercise. I've been taking the kids to school in the morning and working 10-7 with an hour commute either side. By the time I've sorted the kids with supper and bedtime stories it's 10ish, and I'm not in the mood for anything but sleep.

Where am I meant to get my exercise in?

So now the kids are on holiday I have time in the morning to do some walking or cycling for half an hour. I've managed a bike ride the last three mornings. Wish me luck on being able to keep it up!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Manchester England, England (across the Atlantic Sea)

So movie buffs and culture vultures, Manchester and its environs appears in everything from plays about naked hippies to Anime. Do you know these...

1) A recent steam punk Anime starts in Manchester of the 1860's before moving the adventure to London.

2) Boyle horror flick where a month after a biological disaster people are seeking refuge in Manchester.

3) Many times on stage, and filmed once, this play was a reaction to Vietnam. The song Manchester England, England comes from this tune.

4) Scouser Jimmy McGovern set a couple of short run TV series here, classic British Northern working class drama with the likes of Timothy Spall, Jim Broadbent, Jane Horrocks etc.

5) Alcoholic, gambling womanizer, Fitz, tried to shrink Manchester in this 90's cop drama.

6) After "Softly Softly" British police dramas picked up the pace with this long running hit.

7) Sounds like a Bowie song, but was a time travelling cop show.

8) Which London based soap, competitor to East Enders, was filmed in Manchester?

9) Jeremy Brett's famed detective actually found his home street in the Granada back lot.

10) Which intergalactic smeg heads were filmed at BBC Manchester?

Answers should be written on a sealed envelope, and placed in the bottom of a large plant pot for six months.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

San Francisco Zoo

These pictures go back a while, back to 2003. I was using "black and white", indeed, they had just introduced the new C41 processed B&W film, one you could get developed everywhere.I think these were from a photo CD, they look too good for my flatbed scanner. The prints had a bluish cast, but the CD doesn't.

The park benches were a departure for me, I had previously been more focussed on older street furniture, cast iron predominantly. Seeing the stacked tables it was a natural departure.

There is an irresistible attraction to back lit plants. Often it works well, as above, and sometimes simple okay as below.

My favourite shot of the day was this tiger. I did tweak the contrast in Photoshop, but I think I managed to do okay there.

I sometimes think I should have played more with B&W over the years. I was always displeased with the result, but I figured it was as much a development process as the exposure, and was trying to justify a dark room. Playing with Photoshop I saw the advantage to not having chemicals around the house, and the immediacy of the result was more gratifying.