Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Bees and Broccoli with a Canon 7D

The pollinators have started to arrive. My flowering broccoli was center stage for the few pollinators left alive after a very cold winter. I believe these are green bees and carpenter bees. I shot them with a Canon 7D and edited with Avid Express Pro HD. I shot most of this handheld with a 100 2.8 and a 50 1.4. The green bees are about the size of your pinkie finger nail, very small. It was a good challenge with mixed results. The new DSLR cameras take great footage but the user interface is a challenge. Have you ever tried to follow focus on something as small as your pinkie? As with all new tools the fun and frustrating part is learning.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

The original minaret

Today, a photo from my garden. Everywhere you look, minarets!
O.K. not really but they sure do look like them.
Every year I plant old or small onions from the year before and sweet onions seed in their second growing season. In a few days the "minarets" will explode into seed heads attracting all sorts of pollinators.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Stars in the night sky time lapse

For the last month or so I have been putting my old canon G5 through a series of time lapse tests.
The video above is the result of some of the lapses.
The light pollution is so bad around my house that I can only get some of the stars to pop out.
These kinds of time lapses work best with a really dark sky, and a newer DSLR.
I'm working on a DSLR star lapse short but it takes time to get enough good shots.
The video above was shot at 1 frame per minute with a 15 second exposure at 2.0-4.0
If you look closely you can see the spin of the earth.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Killer winter or Lizard mummies

I can't decide which best describes this post, but here we go.
We had the second coldest winter on record here in Tampa Florida.
Most of my garden and ornamental plants were killed or badly damaged.
The unseen effects, until recently, are very tragic.
Every time I move something, anything, I'm finding dead lizard mummies.
cue the music and sting .... da du dun .......!!!!
The constant guardians of my garden have been devastated.
What will we we do? Will they return? ..... again .... da du dun!!!!!!

Here is a video to remind us all of happier days when man lizards passed the days fighting over lady lizards.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Listen up men!

Grow a garden.


Because its so much better than store bought roses and chocolate.

This week I had a new arrival in my tiny garden.

Little green bits of heaven emerged from the dirt.

Heaven you say?

Oh yes.

In a month those little things will become full lush


I had NEVER seen my wife lick a plate clean until she made pesto from my basil.

Honey, your valentines gift is on the way.

And for you Neanderthals who are trying to figure all this out, in short.....

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Flowering Broccoli

Have you ever seen flowering broccoli? Me? Nope! Not until I started my tiny backyard garden.
What most people don't know is that "trees" as we called them when I was a kid, are really flowers.

The flowers are a very delicate yellow, matching the hues of green of the mother plant. Every year I allow several plants to flower after eating the main flower heads. Several weeks from now they will develop into seedpods and I will harvest seeds for next winter.

Back in December I started with a $1.39 pack of seeds. We have had broccoli as a side dish for dinner at least a dozen times. Now thats some good eats cheap!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Spring has Sprung

My red seedless grapes have announced the arrival of Spring!!!!
Its always so subtle, one day you just notice little tiny green leaves bursting from what appears to be dead vines.
Last week we had three days of rain, and BOOM! Now i get to wait, to see if i will get grapes this year. Last year it was just too hot early in the season for the grapes to make it but these are the problems you have growing grapes in region 9.

This is a photo from 2006, a good year for grapes in my vineyard.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Sony DCR-SX83 Lightning Test

This is a test of the Sony Handycam dcr-sx83 under low light. We had a cold front blow through the other night, so i set up the handycam for about two hours. The sample clips are in real time, then slowed down and then i threw in a couple freeze frames. I set the camera for zero lux. If you look closely you can see that the cmos chip has a hard time with the lightning, going from black to overexposed in a second causes the scan lines to appear. Other than those limitations, the solid state cameras are nice in that you can set them up and leave them for hours with no worry about a tape ending or for that matter the camera wearing out.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Sony DCR-SX83 16GB Handycam Camcorder test and review

The Fed EX man brought me a new tool for my photo toolbox, specifically a Sony DCR-SX83 16GB Handycam Camcorder. The camera is tiny, of course all of them seem to be these days. I had a chance last weekend to kick the tires and the results are in the video above. I can't wait for all my pollinators to return, this winter has really grounded all my flying friends. The telemacro feature is really nice getting in close without ..... getting in REAL close.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Birds gotta eat

This is a silly little time lapse of a variety of birds mooching lunch. A bird feeder is located above the shot, if you look close you can see bird feed falling into the shot. Its been a tough winter, so feed those birds! This was shot on a go pro-hero camera, 1 shot every 2 seconds.
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