Spring Twenty Ten

With the vinegar comes the sugar, and in Champaign, that means that with the bitter Winter comes the Spring. And Spring has come, in a big way.

As one is apt to do, when the sun fights back the bitter cold, and the grass, birds and flowers come to life, I went outside. Actually: my wife, my dogs and I went outside. We went to Crystal Lake park in Urbana. Of course I had to bust out my camera, and Christina had to put up with me spending 10 minutes at a time peering at tiny flowers through my lens while she wandered off with Thor and Cleo.

Similar to my Fall Panorama I posted last year, I made a panorama of one of the better views of the park. I used Photoshop's built in "Photo Merge" feature, and I love it! I need to remember to use it more often, now that I have a machine that can do one in less than a bazillion hours. Click it for bigness!

A Spring panorama that feebly tries to convey the warmth and calmness of a spring day in Champaign.

And because I'm all about close-up, depth of focus effects, here is a shot of some tiny pansies that were growing in the grass. I love this shot, because it feels like it could be a background for Alice in Wonderland or something. Foolishly I was shooting at ISO 400, so it's a tad grainy. Oh well.

An army of tiny purple pansies

My new 50mm did not monopolize the shoot, though! I did catch a shot of this sunbathing goose using my long angle lens. I've heard that geese are mean, and I didn't want to test my luck with this one. I tried to bring out the warmth of the sun from the late afternoon.

A goose, catching some warm rays

And, finally, I tried another HDR shot. It's hard to do them anyway, let alone hand-held, and I think I kind of succeeded. Basically this shot was tricky because the bridge was under shade, and the clearing was bright. So I had to use two exposures, one with the bridge properly exposed, and one with the clearing properly exposed. Then I brought out the color and bumped up the contrast. I kinda like it

A lonely wooden bridge leading to a bright green clearing

By the way, so far i'm keeping up with my three shooting-sessions a week plan. I will post two more blog entries later in the week. COMMENT!