Archive for the ‘Photography’ Category

Revisiting Favorite Places

June 10, 2013
A field of Lupine near Plainfield, Wisconsin.

A field of Lupine near Plainfield, Wisconsin.

I photograph what I know best, the landscape about me. Based on my knowledge of the area, the time of year and my best estimate of light conditions, I typically plan to visit a half dozen places during a morning’s photographic venture. I have visited many of these places multiple times before, you could call them my favorite places. I often take a new route to a favorite place and at times am reward by finding an additional favorite place.  Such is the case with today’s image.

The location is near Plainfield, Wisconsin not far from a Wisconsin State Natural Area containing a federally endangered plant. Visiting this SNA over the years, I began to notice this field of lupine becoming more impressive over time. Lupine is an important flowering plant in these parts as the Karner Blue Butterfly (a federally listed endangered species) is totally dependent on lupine for it’s life cycle.  Central Wisconsin hosts a health population of Karner Blue’s.

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Recombobulating in Milwaukee!

May 27, 2013
Recombobulating in Milwaukee

Recombobulating in Milwaukee

Have you ever tried joking around with the TSA employees at the airport?  Those that have, typically end up going through a more thorough than typical evaluation often behind closed doors. So I recommend being polite and humorless as you go through the TSA airport screen. Not that the TSA is completely humorless.

Just beyond the screening area at the Milwaukee County Airport, the TSA has graciously provided a Recombobulation Area.

Just what is recombobulation you may ask….the act of recombobulation is to put back into order or removing confusion. With the new TSA screening procedures that require removal of your shoes, everything from your pockets, and with your carry-on thrown into disarray as you remove your computer and liquids, I certainly feel out of sorts just after going through airport screening.  From what I can tell, seems as if this is a state of discombobulation.

Getting back to normal is then to recombobulate. Now once you are recombobulated are you combobulated? The answer is no because there is no such word as combobulate.

Seems as if the word  “discombobulate” sprung up on it’s own  independent of any previous words, with no Latin or Greek origins. It apparently formed as a joking alteration of “discompose” or “discomfit” — terms for confusing or upsetting a person. There then was no true word recombobulate or combobulate.

Wow, who ever said the TSA is humorless, they pulled a fast one at the Milwaukee Airport even coining a new word.  I understand the “Recombobulation Area” sign has become very popular with travelers going through Milwaukee. Popular enough that combobulate and recombobulate are on their way to become accepted words.

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Emerging Out Of The Mist

May 17, 2013
Fog sunrise

Emerging out of the mist

Central Wisconsin is often shrouded in an early morning fog. It’s beauty is often lost as most folks are simply not awake early enough to witness it.  The farm in the above image is located near Amherst, Wisconsin.

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Mad Capper – A Husband Day Care!

May 11, 2013
Mad Capper in Stillwater, Minnesota

Mad Capper in Stillwater, Minnesota

We spent some time in Minnesota this weekend visiting my daughter and son-in-law. Had breakfast in Stillwater, a tourist town with a boat load of shopping on the main street. We walked past this saloon and could not help but notice this place seemed to be inviting wives to drop off their husbands while they make the rounds of all the shops.

Husband Day Care Center

Husband Day Care Center

Nice idea!

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Good Morning Wisconsin!

May 7, 2013

Crepusculur rays originating from clouds below the horizon.

The above image is an unusual example  of crepuscular rays. The name comes from their typical appearance during crepuscular hours (those around dawn and dusk), when the contrasts between light and dark are the most obvious. Crepuscular comes from the Latin word crepusculum meaning twilight.

A key component for crepuscular rays is the casting of a shadow. The shadow can be due to most anything, typically clouds. The result is sunlight broken into darkened areas (in the shadow) and lighted areas. The above image was attained prior to sunrise with the crepuscular rays caused by clouds below the horizon.

The visible beams always appear to spread out from the light source. In the above image the rays appear to diverge  from the base of the silo.  When I noticed the crepuscular rays forming, I changed my position allowing the rays to appear to be related to the farm buildings.

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Spring is Here!

May 4, 2013
Red Barn in Portage County Wisconsin

Red Barn in Portage County Wisconsin during early spring.

Our snow has finally melted in central Wisconsin. Farmers are plowing their fields, grasses are beginning to become a little green and trees are budding. A few of use have runny eyes and stuffy noses (tree allergies) but all of use have big smiles on our faces because winter seems behind us. I am sure mother nature still has a few cold weather surprises for us but spring is here.

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UWSP Choirs Concert, May 5, 2013

May 2, 2013
UWSP Choirs Concert, May 5, 2013

UWSP Choirs Concert, May 5, 2013

I was contacted the other day by an intern with the UWSP Department of Music asking for permission to use an image from a previous blog post titled . My images are generally available without charge to local non-profit and educational organizations for promotional purposes.  I am also delighted the intern asked for my permission to utilize the image.  I am glad to know graphic arts students are taught to respect ownership of intellectual material. If you like his poster and want to contract for his services let me know, I can put the two of you in contact with each other.

If you are in the area, make sure to attend this concert.  I heard some of the program at . The concert is sure to please you.


Mayhem in My Yard!!!

May 1, 2013

Hurray, hurray it is the first of May!

I am so glad this foolish month of April is finally finished. It looks like winter may finally be behind us and we can look forward to spring. Not only was the weather cruel but lady luck was against me as well.

Over the years I have learned that if you are on the cutting edge of technology, sometimes the technology cuts you bad.  This week I was reminded of that concept once again.  I am sorry to tell you that I had to return   to the dealer and I now have my chimney mounted sprinkler system up for sale.

headless tulipsThe S680 cut the grass like a champ but it’s 42 foot mower head was just a tad too big. While mowing the lawn I paid great attention to the left edge next to the house but not so much attention to the right side. Last year my daughter gave my wife a thousand tulip bulbs for Mother’s Day and we planted them all near the road.  They were beautiful this year until the mower neatly dispatched them.

Standing on my former lawn mower :(

Standing on my former John Deere S680 lawn mower 😦

My S680 could have survived that mistake but then I ran into another problem. I was able to mow the entire front yard in about 10 seconds but what do you do when you reach the edge of the yard?  I put the tractor in reverse but gave it too much gas and popped a wheelie. That caused the rear tires to make huge divots in the yard.  UFFDA!  I am now looking for a more conventional mower.

As to my sprinkler project… you know, the one where I planned to mount the agriculture sprinkler head on my chimney and water my lawn from one central location. I got it up and running and then fine tuned it making sure the coverage of my lawn was just right, not too much nor too little.  Yesterday  I made a tiny error.  Rather than turning up the timer I mistakenly turned up the power on the pump and then left to run a few errands.  I got back only to find the sprinkler significantly over shooting my lawn – I think Allstate insurance would have considered this to be the work of Mayhem.  Well, the power of the sprinkler blew out my neighbor’s second floor bedroom window.  Can you imagine how much water can get through a second floor window at 150 gallons per minute? Water flows downhill so it also drenched the first floor and filled the basement.  On the bright side, they always wanted an indoor swimming pool.

And the neighbors on the other side, well they have a couple of Pomeranians who just happened to be penned up in the their back yard at the time. Let me tell you, despite not liking water, they were completed soaked.  Boy were they dancing, shaking and rolling around in their pen.  Needless to say, I will not be using that chimney sprinkler again.

Gotta go,  I better cancel the crop duster who was going to apply fertilizer and weed killer on my lawn with one pass of his aircraft.  I am beginning to imagine the mayhem that might cause.

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St. Clare’s Hospital Chapel

April 29, 2013
St. Clare's Hospital Chapel in Weston, Wisconsin

St. Clare’s Hospital Chapel in Weston, Wisconsin

St. Clare’s Hospital in Weston is Ministry Health Care’s newest and is Wisconsin’s first all digital hospital. It has dedicated clinicians and staff who have developed a world-class health care facility. Other hospitals in the area claim to have a passion for excellence, but St. Clare’s has the data and national recognition that actually prove its commitment to excellence.

St. Clare’s sponsoring congregation is Franciscan (St. Francis of Assisi, Italy). Clare was a beautiful Italian noblewoman who became the Foundress of an order of nuns now called “Poor Clares.” When she heard St. Francis of Assisi preach, she was called to a life of devotion and to live a poor humble  life for Jesus. One evening, she ran away from home, and in a little chapel outside Assisi, gave herself to God. St. Francis cut off her hair and gave her a rough brown  habit to wear, tied with a plain cord around her waist.

The chapel at St. Clare’s is the essence of simplicity.  It is sparsely decorated but with a cross on either end. 

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Monteverdi Chorale – Song and Dance

April 28, 2013
Monteverdi Chorale, "Song and Dance" at St. Peter's Church in Stevens Point, WI.  April 28, 2013.

Monteverdi Chorale, “Song and Dance” at St. Peter’s Church in Stevens Point, WI. April 28, 2013.

This has been a busy weekend for us, first a fundraising benefit for the UWSP Music Department on Friday, then Monteverdi Chorale’s performance Saturday and Sunday. Cathy has sung with the Chorale for many years. I have had the pleasure of being a Board Member for the past three years, and President for the past two years.  Jim Carpenter is a wonderful artistic director and always puts together a great program and prepares the singers for their best performance.

This is a blended image.  I took three separate exposures in quick succession, then used a photomatix Photoshop pluggin to construct an HDR image for the back ground.  The fore ground was  blended in with a normally exposed single image.

St. Peter’s is a beautiful church with acoustics that is a favorite with local choirs. Today was the first time in my memory that the sanctuary lights were left on for a performance. The lighting not only shows off the beauty of the church, but also allows the singers to have a nice degree of separation from the background.

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