Wednesday, September 29, 2010


187/365 - Sea Anemone
Originally uploaded by Wayne-K
I've been taking a lot of close-up shots lately, especially of flowers. I don't own a macro lens, so my "macro" shots are really cropped photos using my 35mm or 50mm lenses. I don't consider myself a macro photographer, but I've been having fun capturing the intricate details in the flowers, tree sap, etc. Perhaps I'll need to get a macro lens someday....but probably not anytime soon. President Obama already sent me a personal thank you note for doing my part to stimulate the economy this year. No more lenses this year...well, unless I get the cheap 55-200mm. We'll have to see how this job goes first. I'm not thrilled with the culture and mentality at Ericsson...but I'll keep those thoughts to myself.

I was in a foul mood today and decided to clear my head with a walk around town. I walked to Orloff Park....but it was so hot, there wasn't much activity going on. On the walk home, I came across this interesting looking weed, with a purple, sea anemone looking flower. I decided to take a few snaps of it.....

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Street Photography

186/365 - Lost (BW)
Originally uploaded by Wayne-K
The theme for my photography project this week is "Street Photography." For most people, this is a very challenging type of photography....well, unless you're a natural born stalker!

I decided to walk around the local park today. Unfortunately, it was over one hundred degrees and there were only two parents with their kids at the park. I walked around the park, taking pictures of flowers and other things around the park. My thinking was if the people saw me taking pictures, they would think of me as a photographer, instead of Jeffery Dahmer. As I was walking around, I noticed this doll by the garbage can. I decided to shoot it with a low perspective so I could capture the woman and baby in the background, giving the illusion of a lost doll. I liked how the spilled coffee filled the foreground and added some interest to the shot.

I originally processed this shot in color, but the vibrant colors looked too bright and happy. It wasn't the mood I was trying to convey. I converted it to black and white to give it a more dramatic feel. When viewing a photograph, the eyes naturally look at light areas before dark areas. To focus the viewer's eyes on the doll, I used post-processing software to darken the background, darken/sharpen the concrete in the foreground, and reduce the highlights in the grass. I also lightened the dolls face to further focus the viewer's eyes on the doll.

Monday, September 27, 2010

I Run For Life

I Run For Life
Originally uploaded by Wayne-K
We participated in the Susan G. Komen Race for a Cure, 5K walk today in San Francisco. The breast cancer survivors were given special, pink, "survivor" t-shirts. I was amazed at the number of pink shirts, for two reasons.

One, although we're probably far from a cure, I think the treatment has improved dramatically over the last few decades and the survival rate is much better.

Two, I'm surprised at the number of people who are stricken with breast cancer. Before last year, I knew very few people who had breast cancer, or any type of cancer for that matter. However, at the Race for the Cure, we were in a sea of pink. It's amazing to see how one person, Nancy G. Brinker (Susan G. Komen's sister), can do so much for the cause...and each of us can too!

They had a nice ceremony after the race, where they called the breast cancer survivors up on stage. During the ceremony, they played Melissa Etheridge's song, "I Run For Life". It was a very emotional ceremony...

Friday, September 24, 2010

TGIF Again!

182/365 - Lilly
Originally uploaded by Wayne-K
I've been dragging this week, like a tired, old dog. If you can't see the bags under my eyes, just look at my photos. Tired me usually means uninspired photos.

But, boy was I excited yesterday. I remember taking pictures at the Arroyo De La Laguna with my buddy Elmer fifteen or so years ago. Back then I had my 35mm film camera, so for each frame, I used to log the shutter speed, f-stop, and focal length on this little log sheet I created. Today's digital camera logs all that info in the EXIF data....pretty amazing! Unfortunately, on my photo shoot yesterday, I left my tripod at home. I was thinking the creek was going to be dry since it's so late in the year, but as luck would have it, the creek was flowing nicely...and I was up the creek without a tripod. I used a slow shutter speed to blur the water, but without a tripod, it also left the background soft.

I was jazzed this morning....I was going to return to the bridge after work, take some pictures of the graffiti under the bridge for today's bridge shot....and reshoot the creek with my tripod. Then lunch time rolled around, then one o'clock, then two o'clock, then three o'clock, then four o'clock....and then I was comatose and ready for a nap.

So, I wandered around aimlessly with my camera. I even took a picture of the pizza box...yes, the old lady was as inspired about cooking as I was about photography. I finally decided to shoot these flowers. Anyway, I'm going to bed early tonight....busy weekend coming up. I have a Boy Scout service project tomorrow, doing some trail work at the Rancho Los Mochos scout camp. On Sunday, we're doing a breast cancer walk in San Francisco. I hope to get some cool pictures this weekend. Stay tuned....

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Arroyo De La Laguna

Arroyo De La Laguna II
Originally uploaded by Wayne-K
This is the Arroyo De La Laguna, which runs below the bridge. Arroyo is Spanish for brook or creek. While taking pictures of the bridge, I decided to take some wide-angle shots of the creek. The pictures are a tad soft....a tripod would have been useful.


181/365 - Old Meets New
Originally uploaded by Wayne-K
The theme for my photography project this week is "bridges." Living in the San Francisco bay area affords me access to a number of beautiful bridges, none more iconic than the Golden Gate Bridge. Unfortunately, I won't have the opportunity to visit any of these bridges this week.

Here's a bridge on Bernal Avenue, over the Arroyo De La Laguna in Pleasanton, CA. I used a slow shutter speed to create some motion blur in the truck.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Happy Birthday Kailani

Birthday Cake
Originally uploaded by Wayne-K
Happy birthday TWO you, happy birthday TWO you, happy birthday TWO Kailani...Happy Second Birthday To You!

Believe it or not, this is a homemade cake! I liked the simplicity in the design and the pretty colors. If you ever need a birthday party catered, call 1-800-DIANA.

Saturday, September 18, 2010


Fence Gate
Originally uploaded by Wayne-K
The sun is setting sooner and the days are getting cooler. Autumn is rapidly approaching. I've been taking advantage of the final days of summer by hiking a lot after work. I hiked the Pleasanton Ridge yesterday and enjoyed the beautiful, warm, afternoon light.

This morning, I picked up some friends at 6:30 AM to hike on Las Trampas Regional Wilderness. I wanted to capture the sunrise over the East Bay hills...but unfortunately, it was very foggy today. Oh was a great hike nonetheless....

Thursday, September 16, 2010


174/365 - Daddy's Home!
Originally uploaded by Wayne-K
The theme for my photo project this week is "Portrait Photography: Couples." This is a tough one for me because I'm not much of a portrait photographer and don't have the reflectors, lights, flash, etc. I don't even know any loving couples....everyone I know is married!

I usually like to follow the theme, but instead of taking a bunch of crummy portraits (or investing in a lot of gear I'll never use again), I decided to tailor the theme to include couples of things.

I titled today's photo "Daddy's Home!" I was trying to create the image of a father coming home from a long day at work and being greeted at the door by his happy children and his wife, with a bow in her hair, his newspaper in hand, and yearning to know how his day went. Okay I'm dreaming again! That's every (married) man's dream...well, at least in a rated PG blog, anyway....

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Eagle Has Landed

173/365 - The Eagle Has Landed
Originally uploaded by Wayne-K
The Boy Scout program has three aims: character development, citizenship training, and personal fitness. One of the methods to achieve these aims is rank advancement. Eagle is the highest rank in scouting. Very few young men who join the Boy Scout program achieve the rank of Eagle Scout. It takes dedication, commitment, leadership, and planning.


This bench on the Pleasanton Ridge was the result of an Eagle project, one of the final requirements to achieve the rank of Eagle Scout. To successfully complete the project, the scout must plan, organize, and direct a project of significant value to the community. I went hiking after work today and came upon this bench as the sun was setting behind the ridge. These benches are a great place to rest, relax, and enjoy the sunset....thanks to the Eagle Scout who made it happen!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Groovy Pine Cone

Groovy Pine Cone
Originally uploaded by Wayne-K
I got up early this morning to take pictures in the beautiful morning light.

Mount Tallac

Resting on Mount Tallac
Originally uploaded by Wayne-K
We spent the weekend in South Lake Tahoe with a few other families. On Saturday, we hiked up Mount Tallac (9735 feet). This is Kevin, relaxing on the peak, gathering his energy before enjoying the view of Lake Tahoe behind him.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Man's Best Friend

Ever wonder why dogs are man's best friend? Well, I think it's because the dog is the one keeping us company when we're in the dog house!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Happy Labor Day

I find it interesting that we recognize Labor Day by not working. It's like celebrating Christmas without Christ...or forgetting Memorial Day.

Nonetheless, I started my Labor Day at 6 AM....getting ready for an early morning hike at the Morgan Territory Regional Preserve, north of Livermore, CA. A friend picked me and my brother up at 7 AM and we hit the trail by 7:30 AM. Within minutes, we came across this pond...with the early morning sun lighting up the hill in the background. My vision was to capture the nicely lit hill and its reflection in the water. I also liked the curves in the bank and used it to add interest to the foreground.

The bad thing about sunrise is the light looks beautiful early...then steadily gets worse. The incredible orange, morning light quickly disappeared, depriving subsequent photographs of her glorious warmth.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

I Iz An Artist

Growing up, we played baseball. When it wasn't baseball season, we rode our bikes or threw mangoes at the bus. I had no interest in the arts...musical instruments, singing, drawing, painting, dancing, drama, etc. So, my interest in photography is somewhat like squeezing a square peg into a round hole...ask my daughter, it's tough to do.

Some folks think taking pictures isn't art. Anyone can point a camera at a subject and press the shutter release button, right? Well, take a look at the typical photo shared on Facebook and you will realize, it actually takes artistic skill to take a halfway decent photograph. If we had tougher camera control laws, many people would have their cameras confiscated for indecent exposure!

To overcome my lack of genetic artistic skill, I've been doing a lot of reading on composition and in on photography in general. The theme for my photo project this week is "Learning." I may focus my pictures this week on my photography-related learning.

This is a picture of a page out of the book, "The Photographer's Eye" by Michael Freeman. If you're interested in reading this book, drop me a line and I'll let you borrow it.

Saturday, September 4, 2010


162/365 - Bow to the Queen
Originally uploaded by Wayne-K
Thank God It's Saturday...I like Fridays, but I love Saturdays! I got up this morning and decided to go for a walk around Pleasanton. I really enjoy walking around town with my camera. There is something special about walking around....I think I see a lot of things I don't normally see when I'm in my car.

Here's a picture of the fence around the Pleasanton Century House/Bicentennial Park. As I walked by, I noticed one of the posts was bent. I used a shallow depth of field to draw the viewer's eyes to the bent post.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Working Out

The boy is playing AAU basketball this fall. Instead of paying $100 for two months at the gym, he's working out "old school" style. No, I'm not talking about Rocky Balboa chasing chickens around. He dusted off our Olympic weight set in the garage and is lifting free weights three times a week with his friends and jogging a couple times a week.

Of course, my car is parked in the garage and is in close proximity to the weights. He's very aware of this...and he tells his friends to not scratch the car as they walk by "or his dad will kill them." His friends must think I'm psycho! Quite honestly, I wouldn't kill them....although torture is not out of the question....

Anyway, he asks us to move the car out of the garage when they are working kid. For my photo of the day, I walked out to the street and decided to shoot the reflections in the roof.