We have a cactus, well a pot of cacti. Not really sure if it is one or a bunch. But just every so often, we get flowers. And they are gorgeous, as you can see for yourself. I was on my way somewhere in a hurry the other day during Holy Week and my wife called out, “It’s blooming.” So, I grabbed my Kaleidoscope shaped Lytro® and went to work. In five minutes or less, I had shot a lot. Then I was off to do my life stuff.
Parked later on my laptop, I picked a lot that I liked. And uploaded them. And now I share a few. I looked at the plant a couple days later and the blooms were just pale droops. Glad I could turn on the camera and just shoot.
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Today is just about a landmark theatre, on Broadway for longer than I have been alive. The owner that I met when working on the latest Tonight Show translite himself passed away last year. And now it is time for the theatre and those who are behind it to send their love to Whitney Houston. (Check out the link for a very complete history of this amazing place.) The last time I was working the neighborhood, it was a good-bye to the king of pop.
Today I am reminded that our time here is limited, sometimes coming to an end as a surprise, at least to us.
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So this afternoon I did my walk DT. (Downtown LA for you folks not from around these parts.) I cruised up Olympic east to the Alley- Santee Alley, the home of all things for sale to the 99 percenters left in Los Angeles after the Occupy folks moved and unknown to the majority of those who live west of the 405. I followed the bubble gun vendor and managed to get a few frames below, talked with a smiling new friend named Nancy Miller wanting me to take a stress test, and in general being invigorated by all the activity of the hive of humans called Los Angeles. Sunshine and a good walk made my day better.
Here are the related light fields packed in their cute little viewer windows. Captions appears as you move the cursor/finger near the bottom.
We human types are wired for roughness. Benoit Mandelbrot and Nassim Nicolas Taleb introduced me to the term and now I see it everywhere. Took a stroll on Sweetzer on a sunny day and found some stuff with which to play with my cute little kaleidoscope camera. Or overgrown lipstick pix máquina. I loved the old tree trunks and some other elements. Just stayed in the range of exposure that worked and did not worry too much about the things I could not see. (Meaning the limited brightness range of the digital sensor – but who really cares?) It’s about light and color and roughness, not technically exacting pictures like in my other life with translites and motion pictures (Amazing Spider-Man) and television (Tonight Show). Just having a walk, taking in the world around me and loving it. As I write, Oye (Rosabel’s Cubarican Club mix) spins by Gloria Estefan. I always feel the beat way more than I can tell you how they make it. It is why beer joints at the beach are more popular than pilgrimages to desert monasteries, although we may find joy in both. Have a look.
(Remember to run your cursor near the bottom of the pix for a few words of explanation.)
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A true band of brothers gather at St. Michael’s in the City meeting at Starbucks. Last night I visited the Bible Study in Pasadena held on the patio of the coffee house to see how well the light field works at the edge of performance of the camera. I also drank some coffee, munched on coffee cake and considered the story of the prodigal son.
All the exposures seemed to be at 1/15 sec and f/2 at ISO 3200, the apparent limit of the camera from Ren Ng‘s company. When I held the camera steady, the effect could still work. If I moved or the subject did, the refocus seemed to be out of range. Also the focus in creative mode had a hard time in the dim light. Although the images are somewhat rough in appearance, I compare them to the work I did in the late 60′s and early 70′s with my Leica and Nikon on what Kodak called recording film, known as 2475 and 2484. The main problem in using that film was the curling nature of the film base. It was impossible to lay the strips out flat to make contact prints. But it did allow taking pictures in conditions that were unthinkable at the time. And I see the same noisy characteristics with many iPhoto pix in dim light. But they work for the web and our brains sort out the pixels to bring us back the memories. And today we can see color. This new camera and its processing for focus is really okay, in my book.
Look for the captions to show as you move your cursor or finger if you are on the iPad. Meet the band of brothers- Father Charles, the ever-loving son of a preacher man, Deacon Rolin, kind-eyed sage, and Bill, Wayne, new comer Larry, and me, Richard. Our one visitor of the female gender was not feeling great, so I excused her from the visuals.
St. Michael’s in the City is a new church plant in NW Pasadena. Sometimes Father Charles says that he is reaching out to the “broke, busted, and disgusted.” He certainly is reaching the 99 per centers.
Flower close-ups can be very satisfying. But you need to get the light right and the focus right or you will be just a bit disappointed. At least that is my experience. My first picture is a slice of a light field photo taken outdoors, just to allow me to play with the focus. It also will allow me to play with my alt tags a bit, just to see if I can get noticed.
Flower isolated by light field shallow depth of field at f/2
Found some of my favorites in a display at a funeral the other day. Soft light coming through the door. So I had some to play with. Here I present the ones like my banner picture. Only these you can play with.
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“Tune in” soon for my light field work.