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Posts tagged “Wichita

Dedication To The Craft

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So I was out shooting in the fog last December.  I ran across a fellow photographer who was in the same area, wrangling not only a tripod like me, but two dogs on leashes.  My hat is off to him, I have enough trouble walking around with a tripod and my camera bag, without adding dogs to the mix.  Well done sir.


Riverwalk

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A foggy December morning along the river in downtown Wichita, Ks.  That’s the science center called Exploration Place in the background.


Riverside

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Five not-that-common variety of trees for Wichita, Ks…some kind of pines.  They sit in an area of Wichita known as Riverside, where there are city parks along the Big and Little Arkansas rivers as they meander through the city.  I really wanted to call this post “Trees In The Mist”, or maybe “Five Trees In The Mist”, but talked myself out of it…don’t want to get into a rut.  This has obviously had a fairly heavy light vignette applied to it, it seemed to work for me.


Blue Evening At The Keeper Of The Plains

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Blackbear Bosin’s The Keeper of the Plains, located at the confluence of the Big & Little Arkansas rivers in the heart of my home town, Wichita, Ks.   The sky looked interesting this particular evening so I drove down to the Keeper and loitered about.   After getting soaked by a brief rain shower, things started to improve.   I have some images with more dramatic clouds, but I really liked the deep blue evening sky color in this one, contrasted with the artificially lit sculpture.   There are a lot of power lines in the area, along with a couple of tall suspension bridge towers (interesting subject for photos as well) so it is sometimes a challenge to frame the sculpture to exclude all those things.


Cadillac

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One last image from the car show.   A great old black Cadillac.   It was at last years show also, I have many a shot of it’s hood ornament, of which I have posted a couple in the past.  (The third photo down in my recent “hood ornament bonanza” post for example.   It’s a big old hulking piece of American metal, full of interesting details and a boat load of character, beautifully restored and maintained.


Ford Out Front

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Just a couple of Ford related images from the Blacktop Nationals car show in Wichita a couple of weeks ago.   I love the details on the old cars.   I was going to say I love the details on the old Ford’s, but I see that in the mirror every day wink-wink.

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Purple

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Seen at the Blacktop Nationals car show in Wichita last weekend.  I believe this a Chevy, circa 1936.   It was beautiful.  I’m guessing this color was not among those offered by Chevrolet in the 1930’s !


AMC Pacer!

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I just returned from two hours of exhausting walking around at the Blacktop Nationals car show in Wichita, Ks.   I haven’t had time yet to do any real post processing work on the material, except for these two….this is for you Ken Bello!   Knowing  you are obsessed with the classic AMC Pacer, one of the great misunderstood genius car designs of modern times, when I saw this, I immediately knew I had to share.

 

 

Oh yeah, this is what the Pacer on the top was sitting on…..

 

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Urban Landscape-View from 21rst Street

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This is a scene from one of the less attractive sides of Wichita.  Grain elevators are a common sight here, as they are all across the plains.   I also seem to be obsessed with old water towers that look like rockets on the launch pad.  This particular one has been bedeviling me for years, this is the first time I actually stopped to photograph it.  The clouds were interesting on this day, so I stopped for a grand total of about 90 seconds to grab a few frames.   (This involved parking at the side of a busy street in not the greatest area of town. )  It’s an HDR, monochrome conversion with a little extra post processing.


Down The Hatch

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A blast from the past.  Back in the 1980’s I was in a local park when some hot air balloons became visible, drifting slowly across Wichita.  I saw one of them was going to line up with the giant smoke stack at North High School, which was just across the river from me at the time.   I waited until the right moment and took this exposure.    There it resided in it’s boring slide mount for probably close to 30 years, until last night it met up with my new Wolverine Slide Converter gadget.   Thanks to Ken Bello for making me aware of this device.  I’ve started converting a few old slides, trying to learn the quirks of the Wolverine.   (By the way, that was almost the title of this post…”The Quirks Of The Wolverine”. )   This particular image has also had some Lightroom work done on it to make it a little more graphically interesting to my eye.   I look forward to finding other old gems.


Snowpocalypse

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Wednesday and Thursday, February 20 & 21, 2013 is one for the record books in Wichita, Ks.   We experienced the second heaviest snowfall from a single storm on record.  The only one larger was in 1962.  At least 14″ has fallen officially, which is a very big deal for Kansas.   This one even beats the one in March 1970.  That one was in the 13″ plus category, and I had the unfortunate experience of being on a boy scout camping trip for that one.  (Forecasting was much less accurate then!)

Rather than try to drive somewhere for photography this time, I just walked around the house – this was my favorite.   It doesn’t really show the magnitude of the snowfall, but it was the most attractive.   I hope in the days to come we might get some interesting light and perhaps I can get  some more interesting images.   Although Kansas really got hammered with snow, and all the problems it causes, in the long run this will be beneficial because the farmers are really needing the moisture.


Windows

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Just some windows in what passes as a tall building in downtown Wichita, Ks.   Shot in the late afternoon and converted to monochrome in Lightroom.


Hidden Gems?

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I finally decided to upgrade from Lightroom 3 to Lightroom 4.   That is not particularly pertinent to this post, except that is why I was digging through some older photos, doing a little quick experimenting with the new Lightroom.   I ran across this one from my fog images shot in Wichita in 2011.  All the way back in February 2011 – where did the time go?  It struck me as pretty nice, I felt like I had unearthed a previously hidden treasure.   That’s one advantage of digital, it makes it pretty easy for us to go back and review old material – sometimes you might find something interesting.   This is the good old Keeper of The Plains Statue, by artist Blackbear Bosin, standing in the fog.


Buick~1957

 

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This monster is a 1957 Buick.  Not only is the car in top condition, there are two realistic looking mannequins/dummies/dolls in the front seat.  I don’t know what the proper terminology is, but it is an old couple, happily driving their Buick.   A great deal of work went into this one.


Ford Shoots Chevy

 

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The recent car show in Wichita was actually sponsored in large part by the Ford Motor Company.  Since my last name is Ford, I thought about trying to pass myself off as somebody from corporate headquarters.   I am either too shy, honest, or chicken to have tried that –  but oh,  how amusing it could have been, at least until they called security.

This is a little self portrait, reflected in a shiny Chevy hupcap.   A high percentage of the cars on display were Chevy’s.   I have no explanation.


Pontiac~1941

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Might as well finish out the week with another cool hood ornament.  This one is from a 1941 Pontiac, on display at the Black Top Nationals in Wichita.


Cadillac~1941

 

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Another hood ornament, this time from a 1941 Cadillac on display at the Black Top Nationals in Wichita.


Sunset at the Lake

 

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Mother nature must have known I needed new material.   The skies were interesting this weekend so I headed out to Sedgwick County Park in Wichita.  One of my favorite spots near the windmill was not working, the sunset was directly behind a big old ugly transmitter tower.   As sometimes happens, this turned out to be a fortunate turn of events as it forced me to find a new, better location from which to admire this handsome sunset.


Lightning Over Wichita

 

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I was cooking a little dinner Saturday night when a big crash of thunder startled me.   Not that thunder is uncommon here, just that we are in a drought and have not seen rain for a long time.  A brief rain shower was followed by a fairly good lightning display, so naturally I had to run out and try to get some lightning images.


Ready For Launch – Riverfest Balloon.

 
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Now that our Riverfest photo contest is over, I can post anything I want from the event.  Not that there is all that much…but I was fascinated by this balloon launch.   Farmer’s Insurance was giving tethered balloon rides.   In the past they have had some trouble getting everything working, including the weather, but this year they had some luck.  I hovered around quite awhile, shooting while the sun set.   I thought this was  a good example of the high ISO capabilities of a my full frame Nikon D700.   Coupled with the rather amazing noise reduction capability of Lightroom (still using version 3), this is the result.  Handheld at ISO 3200.   That’s amazing stuff to me, but I am old and used to shoot Kodachrome 64.


Waiting for Fireworks

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Once again I am shooting for the Wichita Riverfest photo contest.   Using Google Earth I drew some lines based on the launch sites  and knew where I wanted to set up this year.   Going by previous years, I decided when to arrive in order to secure my spot.   Unfortunately, the  rainy and cool weather earlier in the day must have thinned the crowds.  I found myself with one and a half hours of waiting.  Early on it was a lonely vigil.   I was almost directly under a huge steel power line tower, and half expected security from the power company to come out to get rid of me.   Turns out no one ever spoke to me except one guy who asked me “What time do the firecrackers start?”  🙂

What to do while waiting?  I shot a few bracketed sets here, one of which produced  a nice little HDR image with the rising moon above the clouds.    This image will not be in the contest, as it doesn’t really show any of the Riverfest.   (HDR is probably a no-no anyway for the contest.)

Once the show finally started, the fireworks rose above the saddle in Exploration Place across the river as expected.  I can’t post any of those until after the contest concludes.


In Search Of A More Perfect Sunset

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This one looked very  promising.  The windmill was even pleasingly aligned.  But alas, the hoped for super-spectacularness did not unfold.  But it was still pretty, just in a more subtle fashion than I had initially hoped.


Patience Pays

 

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The weather was unseasonably warm yesterday, so I decided to drive out to a local park in case the sunset was interesting.  It wasn’t at first.  I shot for awhile, but saw none of the pinks or reds I was hoping for.  I waited a full 15 minutes after sunset, and still all I had was blues and grays.   I removed the camera from the tripod, collapsed the tripod, and prepared to walk back to the car.   Then I saw, through the trees on the southern horizon a little bit of pinkish clouds.   Sure enough, there was some pink in a cloud to the north as well, color that hadn’t been there a minute before.   I decided to wait for a minute….and quickly the sky to the west began to colorize alarmingly quickly.    I set back up and shot like crazy for the 5 minutes or so it lasted.   I already knew this as a guiding principle – you need to wait for awhile after sunset to see what develops.  It was just that this time it really looked like nothing would happen.   Wrong!   Patience pays off in situations like this, don’t pack up too quickly.

Something else that is illustrated by this image is that it is possible to shoot something like this in an urban setting.   The windmill is set on a small hill, which I used to block the biking path, lake, road, cars, joggers, and tall light poles beyond.  Not that there’s anything wrong with those subjects, but that was not what I was after this evening.  All that matters is what is in the frame.

This is a three exposure HDR, hopefully not overcooked.  The only thing I could have wished different was that the bladed wheel at the top of the windmill was turned more in profile.   I tried my telekinetic powers, but the thing wouldn’t budge.   You can’t have everything.


Foggy Walk

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Ken Bello has an interesting post up at oneowner about people in photographs such as this.   I remember thinking as I was out shooting, that this walker was going to mess up the shot…then I got to thinking maybe it wasn’t such a problem after all.  I think it works pretty well.