Friday, December 31, 2010

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

New Year's toast

From me, Christie and Susanne. We had champagen and sparkling apple cider, duck paté and strawberries, up on my roof, watching the city lights and reflections of the fireworks lights.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Monday, December 27, 2010

Decaying shack

Decrepit shack @ Alcatraz

Along the Agave Trail on the south side of Alcatraz, this shack shows up. The view is gorgeous, and this peeling decaying piece of pragmatic architecture just drew my eye in.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Alcatraz Agave

Alcatraz Agave

The south end of Alcatraz is being reclaimed by nature nowadays. As part of this reclamation process, the hilly slopes end up being thorny forests of proud agave.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Alcatraz water reservoir and cell house

Alcatraz water reservoir HDR

As a Christmas gift to any reader celebrating on Christmas day rather than eve, here is a piece of nice and illustrative HDR.

This was a clean example of where HDR is good to use. The shrubs in shadow, the reservoir in sunlight, a bright sunny day. I shot one, and saw immediately on the preview that the sky as well as the shade both were blown out. Reset for HDR, shoot three in a row, and then merge at home.

And once Photoshop loads up the HDR dialogue, it was immediately obvious that hardly anything more had to be done to the picture: the automatic HDR settings were pretty much what I wanted out of it — a naturalistic look, but balanced the dark and light tones.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Fog City

San Francisco in fog

Today is December 24: it's Christmas eve, the part of Christmas we celebrate most intensely in Sweden. What better picture to publish than a portrait of my home town, dressed in its most charmingly sheer fog negligée?

God Jul — from all of us in the crowd here in my new apartment in the Tenderloin.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Stanford chapel HDR

Clouds over Stanford chapel HDR

Again, trying to illustrate the clouds, using HDR with a very naturalistic approach to just give the sky enough texture to look interesting. Ithink I got the balance better here.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Stanford in HDR

Clouds over Stanford Main Quad

Experimenting more with a subtle, realistic approach to HDR that still accents the cloud formations. This season seems to be the time to get stuff like this done in the South Bay — where the weather much too often is too well behaved to make the clouds the picture…

I think this one might have gone a bit overboard, though — the haze around the actual buildings detract from the naturality. But it ends up being a nice pic anyway.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Blue ink vortices

Blue ink vortices

Inspired by chats with Robert Ghrist, I spent some time trying to take good, sharp photographs of the vortices you get by dropping ink in still water. I'm not done, but I found these preliminary pictures striking.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Green ink vortex

Green ink vortices

Inspired by chats with Robert Ghrist, I spent some time trying to take good, sharp photographs of the vortices you get by dropping ink in still water. I'm not done, but I found these preliminary pictures striking.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Salmon sky over Stanford

Salmon-pink clouds over Stanford

And as I leave my office for the holidays, I turn around, look up, and see the most extraordinary red coloration on the fluffy clouds rolling in from the hills in the west.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Struck out

Struck out

And sometimes, in the heat of battle, you really just want to lie down and hope it will all go away.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Patience

Patience

Because stabs in the back are not chivalrous, not sportsmanlike, and not as much fun, we wait.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Returning from the hunt

Brave hunters return

At the end of a hunt run for the Boar Hunt organized by the SCA's Principality of the Mist, Hunters, Boars and Dogs walk back again, amiably, and in anticipation of the evening's feast.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Headed out on the Boar Hunt

Heading out on the Hunt

The Principality of the Mist organized a Boar Hunt — heavy fighters run around in the woods, re-enacting a symbolic boar hunt, with fighters playing boars, fighters playing dogs and fighters playing hunters.

Here, two of the safety officers are walking out on one round of the hunt.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

A sunset romantic moment

The Kiss

The two snuck out in the middle of the feast inside, and stood, in perfect silhouette against the setting sun, in one perfect kiss.

Monday, December 13, 2010

A vision in grey

Bay Bridge

Monotonic regularity, repeating towards the horizon, over and over and over again.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Bright red tree

Bright red tree

A somewhat aggressive HDR. Which was the point of the photo, not even trying for realism here.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Fog descending on Oakland horse

Oakland horse vanishing into the fog

When the Bay fogs up, there is essentially nothing that is too low not to fade away with the milky whiteness of the fog.

Friday, December 10, 2010

City Lights, nowadays on the corner of Jack Kerouac

Beats in North Beach

Back when Jack Kerouac and the other beat poets were hanging in City Lights, it was still on the corner of Adler.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

HDR colorful cables

Colorful wires

I found these colorful cables just outside University City in Philadelphia, and I became fascinated with the bright colours they had — the blue of the sky, the red of the rust and the green of the oxidized copper cables.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Cloudy skyscraper

Cloudy skyscraper

A nice day, blue sky and a touch of clouds to make the sky interesting. I look up, and the sky scraper almost blends into the sky, with the clear and colorful reflections.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Philadelphian oil

Philadelphia refinery

On the final approach to PHL, we fly over quite a bit of oil infrastructure. In the middle of the night, these become quite photogenic.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Clouds over Geary

Clouds over the Geary cathedral

A day with dappled clouds over San Francisco made my view over the Geary cathedral gorgeous.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Game night at AT&T

As I returned from Stanford one early evening, the vision from AT&T Park is positively gorgeous:
Game time at AT&T Park

Amazingly, it almost got even better at my first attempt; when the dark made the camera fail to pick up on the right focus point in time for the shot:
Hazy Giants stadium

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Carps swimming down Leavenworth

DSC01806

Swimming down the sidewalk on Leavenworth are carps in many different colours.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Live dolls

Living showroom dummies

One of the more interesting shows at the fair was the corset shop with living women holding poses in the shop window.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

We saw Santa riding by…

Santa Claus, preoccupied

…as we were sampling jellies and jams. Alas, Santa didn't as much as glance at us.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Brass Farthing singer

Brass Farthing

On our way to the Dickens Fair, we spent the BART trip chatting with a performer. He turned out to be a sixth of the Brass Farthing, and thus we had extra reasons to go and listen to their performance.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

SF Slim looking grimy

SF slim

While Susanne was here over Thanksgiving, we went to the Dickens Fair. Many wondrous things were seen, and sampled, and we even met up with SF Slim.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Red fountain

Red Fountain

I leave for a few weeks, and when I get back — the Stanford fountains are suddenly flowing red.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Shadow and light

Cathedral

The billowing shape of the cathedral at the top of Geary reflects in the gentle curve of the shadow cast along the cathedral.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

The Berlin Train

The Berlin Train

The Berlin Train — from below. This is one of the two DC-9 airplanes standing on display at the air bridge memorial in Frankfurt.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Berlin wall piece

In Berlin, at Tempelhof, there is a monument standing to commemorate the air bridge between Frankfurt and Berlin-Tempelhof to keep West Berlin sustained during the height of the cold war.

The counterpart, with the other bridge head, stands just east of Frankfurt/Main international airport, together with two of the airplanes used: the Rosinenbomber and The Berlin Bridge.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Airport fence

FRA airport fence

A study in repetition, sliding from green to red, and from here to away.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Monochromatic aircraft

Flying over

Much like yesterday's photo, this was shot just outside the airport area in FRA, just as a flight was coming in for its touch-down.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Flying over me

Flying over

My last night in Germany was spent in the InterCity Hotel at FRA — and this enabled me to go to the Runway Observation Spot just east of the airport.

This one was shot right in line with the runway, just as a flight was coming in for touch-down.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Friday, November 19, 2010

Arriving in Amsterdam

Arriving in Amsterdam

As we bus from the cityhopper to the terminal, I notice more planes taxiing in as the sun slowly crawls up over the horizon. Travellers race the sun to the Land Under Water.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Neon office

Neon office

A neon light traces through this office building at TU Kaiserslautern — through the lower story conference room as well as the upper story office room.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tree vs. infrastructure

Tree against infrastructure

A single small tree, keeping its stand against the infrastructure surrounding it and pounding it with train trailwinds day after day after day.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Looming skyscraper

Dark tower

Dark and imposing, against an angry sky, this skyscraper looms over Mannheim train station.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Walk without rhythm

Walk without rhythm

A bird passing overhead attracts the attention of the vicious, and fast, burrowing predator worm. It dislodges the earth as it speeds through to its chosen point of attack, where it suddenly bursts up through the thin shell of the earth, lunging up and spraying the air above it to stun the bird into falling down into its bushy head of micromanipulators, waiting hungrily to rip it to pieces and shove the raw bird carcass down into the worm's maw for later devouring.

Either that, or it's a kind of arid climate plant that has bloomed out.

Saturday, November 13, 2010