All posts for the month November, 2010

Did I mention before that I don’t go out half as much as I want/should?
I’m improving 🙂
Last weekend, cold as hell, but so beautiful. I took a good friend of mine to one of my favorite winter places for a quick photoshoot. I was there last week, too, but gee, do things change quickly!
Last week there was quite a bit of snow, but it hadn’t been so cold during the days and nights, yet. The past days it’s been colder than -10°C during the day, and closer to -20°C during the night and then things go fast. The stream wasn’t frozen, it’s not a white water river, but the current is quite strong anyway, so it takes awhile before it actually does freeze completely. But the rocks and branches in the water make for such a beautiful scenery when the splashes of water turn into ice that I could just go there every day to shoot some pictures.

Beautiful winter scene of a stream running through a with ice covered rocky bedding

D700, ISO200, 1/10 sec @ f/16, Nikkor 50mm

Beautiful winter scene of a stream running through a with ice covered rocky bedding

D700, ISO200, 1/6 sec @ f/19, Nikkor 70-200mm

(As usual, prints available. Prices depending on size and material. Inquiries via photos [that funny symbol here]

So… For all you people who were expecting a self portrait of me covered in cat-paste I went through some lengths to make an ass out of myself and did a couple of self portraits anyway.
(sorry, there are days that I’m too lazy to be creative, so…)
(disclaimer: no arnos were hurt in the making of these pictures. Nor fridges or laundry machines, for that matter.)

Laundry machine

Laundry machine, D700, ISO800, 1/250 sec @ f/6.7, Nikkor 14-24mm


Fridge, D700, ISO800, 1/15 sec @ f/4, Nikkor 14-24mm

Funny things you see when you get in closer…
I seriously have to find me one of those 5:1 macro lenses!

Snow and ice

D700, ISO200, 1 sec @ f/16, Tamron 90mm macro + 1.4 teleconverter + 12mm + 24mm + 36mm extension tubes

Now this is something worth noting 🙂
I love nature. It’s one of the many things I photograph. But to say that I don’t have “green fingers” is probably a serious understatement.
Now with the Better Half gone I’m responsible for the plants and it’s something I’ve been dreading for as long as I can remember. It’s a disaster waiting to happen, a time bomb persistently counting down to zero. We don’t have many of them in our apartment, but they’re all of a different kind. That one needs a bit of water every day, that one needs a bit more water, but every other day, and it’s enough if you give that one a bit less water every third day, but feel the soil, if it’s wet, you should wait.
So… One has already reached the state of “no more brain activity”. It’s in a coma, a serious one. It’s… well… a vegetable, so to speak, for lack of a better word. And I have serious concerns if it will ever again regain consciousness (I will have to discuss with the PhD when she comes home, but we might have to euthanize, sorry to say).
Another one, although still very much alive, doesn’t seem to have as many leaves anymore as it did over the summer, but that might not be my fault, that might also be the change of season (hopefully).

So in short… even plants that are deemed next to immortal die a swift, but painful death in my care. Imagine my surprise when I went to water the plants today, and I found one of the Better Half’s favorites (and, as she’s mentioned before, one that seems to be difficult to get to flower (not to her, though, she gets everything to flower 🙂 )) with a big white flower and otherwise stuffed to the rim with buds. They seem to have grown overnight. I didn’t notice them before. But hey… Victory! 🙂
And the cats and the turtle are still alive, too! Maybe I’m not such a lost case after all 😀

Alive and kickin'

D700, ISO200, 0,7 sec @ f/16, Tamron 90mm macro

Alive and kickin'

D700, ISO200, 1/6 sec @ f/13, Tamron 90mm macro

I’m sure you’ve all read (or at least the animal-people among you) the “How to feed a cat a pill” manual
It’s that time again. It’s not a pill this time, though, but some paste. 3 days they have to get it. And 3 days they WILL get it, if it’s the last thing I do. Every year it’s a day of getting used to. For me (or the Better Half) to give it, but also for the cats to realize that really I AM the boss and they WILL eat what’s shoved down their throat.
Yesterday was that day of getting used to. No problem whatsoever with Cassandra. She remembers who’s the boss and she just wants to get it over with. But Ramses, Mr Peabrain with his non-existent (any term) memory always has to be reminded that there’s no winning this fight for him. I gave him the paste and he started smacking and then he shook his head and most of the paste was on the kitchen drawers, on the fridge, on the floor and on me.

But I’m persistent, more so than he, so I gave him a new shot and held him. And he smacked some more, but I didn’t let him shake his head. And all was fine.
It all comes down to authority, I guess *grins*
Today it was all smooth like a feather. Even Ramses’s (any term) memory must’ve replayed yesterday’s events, because he didn’t even struggle.
(maybe we’re just lucky with our cats, like I’m lucky with my in-laws, because that also seems to be out of the ordinary 😀 )

Flubenol seringe

D700, ISO200, 2 sec @ f/11, Tamron 90mm macro

Riiiiiight… You were expecting a self portrait of me in the kitchen covered in that paste, right?
Sorry to disappoint you. I’m making a fool out of myself already enough 😉

Sorry about the rush yesterday. Crazy day. Home only to feed the cats and to quickly do my blogging duties 😀

So I got to go out yesterday, on that crazy day. It’s been crazy winter, too. I remember the first winter here, in 2002. That was crazy winter, too. It went from summer to winter, from +20°C to -15°C and 15cms of snow in about 10 days. No autumn whatsoever. And then there were several weeks on end a bit later with -35°C during the day. It hasn’t been that radical this year, but the snow has come early compared to previous years. And *they* say that this is going to be the harshest winter since they started recording the weather.
Blizzard’s raging outside, the windows are rattling in the frames as I’m writing this. Crazy days! It took me 20 minutes to dig out the car this morning.

But it was a good time to revisit some of the places I visited in my first winter, and although times have changed, and they’ve been building around many of the places I’ve revisited, some of the places have remained, and have remained beautiful.

River running through a snowy landscape

D700, ISO200, 1 sec @ f/16, Nikkor 14-24

Birch forest in winter

D700, ISO800, 1/90 sec @ f/8, Nikkor 50mm

I’m a bit in a hurry, so I’ll give you a bit more to awe at tomorrow 😉
Right now you’ll have to do with this one.


River running through a snowy landscape

D700, ISO200, 1/6 sec @ f/9.5, Nikkor 14-24mm

I know… Don’t ask… I KNOW!!!
I’m just trying to point out that – as with many things in Life – there’s a good way and a bad way!

Hole in sock

D700, ISO800, 1/125 sec @ f/3.3, Tamron 90mm macro


D700, ISO3200, 1/125 sec @ f/3.3, Tamron 90mm macro

I had still a bit of a flu. I still had a good head ache. But I had to get something to eat. And while I was there, anyway, I decided to just quickly get the soap. So I went in, with head ache and all, that got worse and worse. And after paying, which made the head ache even worse (darling, I SERIOUSLY miss you, you should be able to afford a crappy piece of soap for just under 10€ a lot better with your MBA than I can as a poor starving freelancing artist 😀 ), got the hell out of the place. Dreading the day when I run out of moisturizer. I’m gonna have to take out another mortgage on the house!

And even the picture is a disaster. But right now I couldn’t care less…


D700, ISO200, 30 sec @ f/13, Nikkor 50mm

It actually happens a good number of times. That the smoke alarm goes off, I mean.
But that’s not, because I can’t cook. I hardly ever cook anything that smokes 😀 It’s because for some reason that stupid smoke alarm we have is so sensitive that it starts screaming when you toast bread in the toaster. And the toaster’s not even near the smoke alarm. I always end up taking out the battery of the smoke alarm. Kind of defeats the purpose, but it’d be stupid to have the fire dept. on your doorstep for a false alarm 2-3 times a week, because someone in the house hears a fire alarm and calls them in.

Pots and pans and a stove

D700, ISO200, 1,5 sec @ f/11, Nikkor 50mm