Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Melt then Freeze

Flagstaff is one of those places where, in the winter, it can be very cold at night (around 10 degrees) and then very warm during the day (even in the 50s). And this makes for a lot of melting and refreezing of snow and ice. The grill on our deck is situated under the overhang of our roof and as the snow on the roof melts it flows down on top of the grill and then freezes in the evening, making some interesting icicle formations.

Monday, December 29, 2008

From the Mesa

The snow covered San Francisco Peaks as seen from McMillan Mesa after a recent snowstorm. My wife, Becky, gets credit for this photo. Unfortunately, I was at work during this beautifully clear day. Oh well.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Icicles on Icicles

These large icicles formed on our icicle Christmas lights outside our front door.


Saturday, December 27, 2008

Overhang

About 4 feet of snow was hanging off the roof over our front door after a snowstorm last week. Even though it looked cool, it presented a bit of hazard for our mailman who delivers mail and packages to our front door from time to time, so I had to hang out the upstairs window and knock the snow off.

I hope everyone had a very happy and safe holiday season this year.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

A Dusting 4777a


A Dusting 4777a, originally uploaded by dustinjblodgett.

We received about 23 inches of snow over 3 days here in Flagstaff, last week. And now that we have just dug ourselves out, the weather channel says we are due for another 12". Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Lady, Are You Crazy?

We got at least 15" of new snow yesterday in Flagstaff. I had the pleasure of shoveling our driveway for the first time. Ah, the joys of home ownership. Although I took this photo before the bulk of the snow had come down, Curry still didn't want to leave the deck to do her "business" with just an inch or two on the ground. Can you blame her though?!

Monday, December 15, 2008

'Tis the Season

My wife is an avid baker, especially during the Holiday season. This is one of her first batches of the season, a delicious cookie called Caramel Cocoa Delights; they have a layer of caramel in the center of the cookie. Don't ask me how she got it in there, I just assume it's some kind of baking magic.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Squinty

Our Irish setter puppy, Curry, soaking up the morning sun; although from the look on her face and squinting of the eyes it may be a little too bright. :-)

Again, my wife, Becky, gets credit for this photo.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Cosmic

Another shot of the moon, Jupiter and Venus from last Monday night. A contrail from a jet can been seen in the upper right hand corner, reflecting the rays of the setting sun.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Watch Cat

Our cat, Imara, keeping an eye on our Irish setter puppy, Curry, while she takes a nap.

My wife took this photo.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Brefkist

A macro shot of the beginnings of my breakfast the other day: scrambled eggs with onion, green pepper, shredded cheddar cheese and green tomatillo salsa. Yummmmmm!!!!!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The Stars Align......kinda

On Monday night, a unique cosmic event occurred. Venus and Jupiter, two of the brightest planets seen from Earth, appeared very close to the crescent moon in the night sky. In this photo, taken just after sunset, Venus can be seen below and to the right of the moon. Jupiter is the slightly less bright star above and to the right of Venus. I took this from my backyard facing southwest.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Long Exposure Twins

Wow, it's been a while since I posted. Sorry for that. With the new puppy and the holidays coming, I haven't had a lot of extra time.

However, since it gets dark so early now, it has given me more time to experiment with long exposure photography. I took this photo a few days ago in our bedroom. For those shutterbugs out there, the EXIF info is as follows: exposure time=30 sec, aperture= 3.5, and ISO=400. I stood behind the chair for about 7 sec and sat in the chair for about 11 sec of the 30 sec exposure. I am working on reading about how to do startrail photography next, so if I get a good one I will share it. Enjoy the holidays!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Curry in Flagstaff

OK, so I guess this photo isn't really Flagstaff-related, but I had to post it. Last week, my wife and I got our first dog, an Irish setter puppy named Curry, from a breeder in Denver. This photo was taken during her first full day living in Flagstaff, so I'll use that as my justification for posting it here. :-) She's a lot of responsibility, but totally and completely worth it. Here are some more photos of her if you are interested....

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Shadow

The sunset behind me caused my shadow to stretch out over this field of Autumn grass near Snowbowl Ski Area. The peak in the background is Humphreys Peak, the highest point in the state of Arizona.


Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Windy, Wild Hair

On a windy hike a few weeks ago, I captured this shot of my wife with some wild, wind-blown hair. I like how the bokeh turned out on this one, in that her eye is in focus, but her ear is blurred out.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Friday, November 14, 2008

Into the Hills

A trail near the Snowbowl Ski Area in Flagstaff. The hills and peaks in the background are actually an extinct volcanic field.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

In the Grass

My wife and I took a hike around sunset a few weeks ago on an unnamed trail near Snowbowl Ski Area. The light was just perfect to catch this shot of my wife walking through some Autumn grass.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Snow on the Peaks

Well, I think the cold weather is finally here. Until now we have been having some unseasonably warm weather in Arizona, but with today's high of only 45 degrees and obvious snow on the Peaks, I think winter is on its way. I included two photos for this post the first (above) is a closer view of the peaks detailing the snow cover and the second (below) is a zoomed out image to include some interesting cloud formations that were present at the time. Hope the weather is good where you are. Enjoy Fall while it lasts!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Courthouse

Another photo of the Coconino County Courthouse in Flagstaff, Arizona as seen from San Francisco Street. Like the photo I posted a few days ago, this is also an HDR image, and although it got tonemapped a little more than I would have liked, I still think it came out OK.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Monte V

This sign hangs from the front of the Hotel Monte Vista in downtown Flagstaff. At night the hotel is lit up brilliantly with several neon signs (including this one). One of the oldest hotels in a town with seemingly endless hotels, this is definitely one to visit even if you don't plan to stay there.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

CCC

This is a Coconino County Courthouse located in historic downtown Flagstaff, Arizona. Built in 1894 from local red Moenkopi sandstone, the courthouse is one of the oldest and best preserved buildings in the city. It is a must see when visiting Flagstaff.

NOTE: This is an HDR image I created using a program called Qtpfsgui 1.8.12.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Flower

I'm not sure the name of this type of flower, but they must be one of the few flowers around Flagstaff that survived our first hard frost a couple of weeks ago. If anyone can ID this flower for me, it would be much appreciated.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Autumn in the Desert

OK, so Flagstaff isn't in what most people would consider a stereotypical desert environment, but certain types of cactus do grow here, as evidenced by this little guy growing just off of Elden Lookout Trail. The Fall leaves surrounding the cactus are from the gambel oak tree, one of a few deciduous trees that grow here.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Sunset on McMillan Mesa

Yesterday evening, my wife and I took a walk on McMillan Mesa Trail, part of the FUTS (Flagstaff Urban Trail System). The trail is perfect. It's about 2 blocks from our house and, although it's right in the middle of the city, once you get out on the mesa you can't see anything, but forest and the Peaks. Unfortunately, they are currently doing some "developing" of the mesa; building an industrial park and some housing. I guess you can't stop "progress". :-(


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Red Rock Country

I took this photo halfway up Devil's Bridge Trail near Sedona, AZ. The spikey plant in the foreground is an agave plant and they, along with yucca, prickly pear cactus and juniper trees, are a very common species of plant found along Devil's Bridge Trail.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Inner Basin

Where Inner Basin Trail reaches the Inner Basin there is a pump house that pumps water from a deep well and pipes it down hill to the city of Flagstaff. It's just one of many wells located on the Peaks that supplies the city with clean drinking water.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Lockett Meadow

In the Fall, Lockett Meadow is one of the prime areas to see Fall colors. Unfortunately, we got up there about 2 weeks too late. Oh well, it still makes for a beautiful scenery.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Fun with HDR

Lately, I've been playing around with a photography technique called HDR. I'm still in the beginning stages of learning how to do it, but I have had some successes so far, I think. For those who don't know, HDR stands for "High Dynamic Range" which means, unlike conventional photographs, there is a wider (higher) range of exposure levels in the image. So areas in a regular photograph under the same light conditions would have areas that were lost to over- (too light) or under- (too dark) exposure, which causes loss of detail. HDR photos are made by creating a composite of 3 images of the same scene that were taken at different exposures. I use the Automatic Exposure Bracketing feature on my camera and a free program called Qtpfsgui 1.8.12 to combine the images. However, this technique can be used with other programs like Photoshop, Photomatix, GIMP, etc. I hope to improve as I continue to experiment with different lighting conditions and program settings. By the way, this photo is of our dining room in the evening when the setting sun comes streaming in the glass door.

Here's what a single image looked like with regular exposure of the same scene under the same conditions. Notice the detail that is lost in the dark and light areas of this photo.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Flare

I caught the light as it filtered through some Fall aspen on Veit Springs Trail.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Monday, October 6, 2008

Veit Springs Trail Color

Last week, my wife and I went for another hike. This time we tried a new trail called Veit Springs Trail. It is located just off of Snowbowl Road, the road that takes you up to Snowbowl Ski Area, northwest of Flagstaff. It's an easy 1.5 mile loop hike that takes you through wooded areas filled with ponderosa pine and aspen. The aspen in this area were already changing color to a brilliant yellow. Here's a macro photo I took while on the trail.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Russian Sage

This macro shot of a Russian Sage (Perovskia atriplicifolia Benth.) plant was taken in my front yard. Russian Sage is a favorite for Flagstaff landscapers, although I've heard that in other areas of the country they consider it a weed. Either way I find the brilliant purple of the blooms contrasted against the light sage green of the stems and leaves a beautiful sight to see. :-)

Monday, September 22, 2008

Strange

Yesterday morning, there was the strangest cloud formation hovering over the top of the San Francisco Peaks. I'm sure there is some perfectly good meteorological-type explanation for this phenomenon, but for a second I was convinced that aliens were landing on top of the mountain. :-) Here's another view of the cloud formation.

Addendum: I have to give my wife, Becky, credit for this photo. I had already left for work when I saw this photo op, so I called her and asked her to take a photo of the mountain and she was gracious enough to go out (in her bathrobe, mind you) and take a photo for me to post on FDP.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Caught in the Storm

While hiking on Humphreys Trail a couple days ago, my wife and I were caught in a mini hail storm. It only lasted a few minutes but it was long enough to cover the ground with a thin layer of tiny iceballs. The flash fired on this shot and, on the left, caught a hailstone in mid-fall.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

From SnowBowl

My wife and I went for a hike on Humphreys Trail today and I got this panoramic shot at the top of Snowbowl Road northwest of Flagstaff. The weather wasn't all that great, however; we got hailed on and then rained on most of the hike. Oh well.

Most of the peaks you see in the distance are extinct mini-volcanoes called cinder cones. This view is even more spectacular at sunset when the sun is low in the sky and to the right. I plan to head up there again soon to capture the view at that time of day.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Cotton Candy in the Sky

A late summer sunset in Flagstaff, Arizona. I took this photo from the front of my house.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Friday, September 5, 2008

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

At Work

A bee busy at work collecting pollen on one of the many, many, MANY wild sunflowers that have sprouted up in our backyard during the summer monsoons.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Kitchen Life

My wife's much loved and much used mixer. Fall is baking season and I am very much looking forward to it.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Snow in August???

Yep, that's snow on the top of the San Francisco Peaks........or possibly a heavy blanket of hail. We had (probably) one of our last big rainfalls of the 2008 Monsoon Season yesterday and when the sky cleared, we could see a covering of white "stuff" on the top of the mountain from our driveway. I haven't been out today to see if it's still there, but since the thermometer says its already 73 degrees, I'm thinking its probably gone by now. :-)

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Blue

I took this photo in my new backyard this morning. This little blue flower has multiplied and half the yard is a blanket of blue. It's amazing how the petals are almost iridescent.

View from Front

Hi Everyone. I have to apologize for the lack of photo postings lately. My wife and I just moved into our first home and we've been working hard painting, ripping up carpet, moving our stuff, etc., so I haven't had a lot of time to post photos. Not to mention a lack of the internet at home. But now that things are settling down and we have internet service in our new place, I hope to get back into the swing of things.

Today's photo was taken out a bedroom window from the front of our house. The sun was just starting to set and was painting Mount Elden (on the right) in rich light.