A Jim of All Trades

Posts Tagged ‘pictures

Cyclo-cross – Photography

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This morning I went to a Cyclo-cross race, watched, and took some photos. Cyclocross (“cross”) is a form of bicycle racing, done on a varying terrain (mostly off-road), where the competitors do multiple laps of a course against a time limit, and there are obstacles, hills, and/or other challenging parts of the course where they might have to dismount and run carrying the bike to get by. (Check out Wikipedia: Cyclo-cross for a better explanation.) I’d never been to a cross race before and have been interested in seeing what it’s like so, when I found out about one close by, I happily took the chance to check it out. I haven’t been shooting much photography this year, so it was a good opportunity to get the camera out as well.

I really enjoyed it and think it would be neat to try sometime, though don’t have any serious expectations about really getting into it. More of a if I ever own a suitable bike I’d try it out at least once kind of thing. I did start working on convincing my wife that I need a cross bike though. ;)

It was fun shooting some photos, too. The course was very spectator-friendly and you could get right up next to the riders. I’ve found that I really like getting action and panning shots (not that I’m great at getting consistent good quality results yet) and it was cool to get a chance to get some cyclists in action. Here’s a random selection of shots I took with a few comments mixed in…

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There were 2 wooden barriers, about a foot tall, that riders had to cross. Most dismounted, ran, and jumped over…

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Others jumped the bike over them…

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a little hard to tell, but he’s completely air born here 

One steep hill on the course that most people dismounted and ran up…

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it’s steeper than it looks! 

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Thanks for reading and happy riding!

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Written by Jim

December 2, 2017 at 10:30 pm

Dry Creek Bed Photos

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Yesterday I went out to shoot pictures for the first time in about a year. I’ve been so dedicated to training this year that I didn’t do many of the other things I enjoy. I really had fun yesterday and will make more of an effort to get out with the camera again while it’s still nice out.

Anyway, while running yesterday I crossed over this creek that was all dried up and cracking from the lack of rain we’ve had this year. Later in the day I drove back with my camera and shot some pictures, it was pretty cool.

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I’ll note, and you’ll probably notice, that the sky is really washed out in all of these. That’s my bad with the camera… mix of being out of practice and lazy.

I went up the creek a little in the other direction and came upon a really neat setting.

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There was a house to the left here and I’m pretty sure this was someone’s property. There was sort of a dam in the creek here and it would have made a nice pond. Still cool looking without the water.

When I first came here I made some noise, and a bird popped up.

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I’m no birder, but am pretty sure that’s a blue heron. There were also a few geese floating in the small pool but they left much more quickly and I only got blurry shots of them.

Surrounded the pool were tons of dead crayfish. I’m not sure whether they died from lack of water or the birds feeding on them, but there were a lot there.

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Thanks for looking, hope you enjoyed.
Happy shooting!

Written by Jim

September 26, 2016 at 7:19 pm

Simeone Foundation Automotive Museum

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Yesterday I visited the Simeone Foundation Automotive Museum in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This museum is dedicated to race cars throughout history and has a very cool collection of old cars with significant historical value. I am not a student of history when it comes to race cars, or really anything for that matter, but it was really interesting going through the museum, learning about the different cars and getting to see some rare survivors. Some of them were examples of only a few known remaining models, had significant racing history and wins in their past. If you’re a car enthusiast and ever in the area, I highly recommend checking it out.

I took a ton of pictures with my cell phone (didn’t have the real camera with me) and have a number posted below. These are unedited as I simply didn’t have the motivation to go through them. They’re presented in no particular order. Please take them for what they are – cell phone pics – and I hope enjoy browsing through.

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A Bedpan Guitar

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This is another guitar that I finished late in December, a bedpan guitar. I can’t take credit for the idea, just do a google search and you’ll find several others.
(more pictures at the end of the post)

The story behind this one is that my mother (a nurse with a pretty goofy sense of humor) saw a few at a festival she went to over the summer and asked if I could make her one. She thought it was funny and the bedpan reminded her of her nursing school days. It wasn’t very hard to make, it just took me a while to get to it. She was very happy with it.

I found the bedpan on Craigslist, which has to go down as my most interesting Craigslist purchase. I cleaned it so hard before doing anything with it, you can’t even imagine.

I didn’t shoot any video of it or record it, and it’s sort of hard to explain the sound. It sounds okay, but definitely different than a cigar box guitar does. Less volume (I think due to the lack of a lid and the bridge resting right on the neck) but sort of metallic-y and well suited for playing with a slide.

It was fun to do and I’m happy my mother enjoys it so much but I can’t say I’d make another.

Thanks for looking, hope you enjoyed.

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Written by Jim

January 13, 2016 at 9:51 pm

Cookie Tin Guitar

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I’ve made a few more guitars since the last one I posted about in June. One that I completed in December is a cookie tin guitar.

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It’s the same general concept as a cigar box guitar, but with a cookie tin as a resonator instead of a box. While I was making it my intention was to try to sell it to help finance another project I want to do, but after I finished and played it, I liked it too much so am not going to part with it. This just reinforces my original feelings that I’d never make these to sell… it takes away some of the fun in making them, actually making it sort of stressful with being concerned over details, and it’s just more fun to do it as a hobby and give them as gifts.

Anyway, this one does have a unique sound to it; it’s a bit more “plucky” and banjo like. Following are some photos and a short video of me playing it at the end.

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Thanks for looking!

Written by Jim

January 2, 2016 at 10:08 am

Fireworks

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Hi, long time no post. Four months and a day to be exact. I didn’t intend on neglecting this blog but have been keeping busy and more or less forgot about it. While on vacation this week I figured I’d try to post a few things and hopefully will keep with it better moving forward.

This summer I tried photographing fireworks for the first time. It was a lot of trial and error and more bad shots than good, but I had a few “keepers” that I’m relatively pleased with.

The following are a mix from the 4th of July and my town’s annual fair. All were shot with my Pentax K-r and (I think) the 18-55 kit lens.

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Written by Jim

December 28, 2015 at 2:39 pm

Mascot Mill Park

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I started experimenting with different routes home from work a few months ago to avoid traffic on the main route and happened upon “Mascot Mill Park.” It’s a neat little park with a couple of picnic tables, benches, a dam, and there are usually people fishing when I go by. I don’t know where the “Mascot” part of the name came from; there is a mill there as well, so maybe that’s where mascots are made?

It’s a quite photogenic setting and I’ve stopped a few times now to take pictures.

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One time I had a surprise helper with my pin hole camera:

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This last one was taken with Google Camera.

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Written by Jim

August 27, 2015 at 8:50 pm