Vantage Point

Assignment: Pick a vantage point (with a one-step radius), stay there for at least an hour, and photograph. Find or make interesting views out of ordinary or usually-ignored items.

I took close to 100 photographs and decided 6 were good enough to keep (with one being the photograph of my tripod to show my vantage point).

This is where I stood.


Weeds with yellow flowers, panned.

Yellow flowers panning

The side vent of the grill.


Where the driveway segments meet.


A composite montage of sunflowers and the hurricane fence.


A lily pad with rain drops. The yellow lily is in a plastic barrel and was still closed at that time of the morning.

Lily pad

Impressionistic Flowers

And yet another way to blur photos on purpose. The irony is I had to delete several photos from this set where I tried to take a standard photograph but they were out of focus: not clear enough, not blurry enough. Huh.

Blurry on purpose 2017 05 (7)

These ox eye flowers sort of look as if they were suspended in mid air.

Blurry on purpose 2017 05 (14)

A bottlebrush.

Blurry on purpose 2017 05 (16)


Blurry on purpose 2017 05 (17)

Purple heart plant.

Blurry on purpose 2017 05 (20)

Sunflowers, almost look three dimensional. Well, actually, they are, but photos aren’t.

Blurry on purpose 2017 05 (23)

Sunflowers, going somewhere in a hurry.

Blurry on purpose 2017 05 (30)


One photography homework was dreamscapes: intentionally and artistically blurring the photo. I can’t tell you how ironic this is to me, as I work really hard using my photography time trying to get crisp, clear photos. Still, I was very happy to learn that my camera will take multiple exposures and overlay them to get this effect. I failed when trying to do┬áthis technique using software. Learning something new everyday.

After I took the first set of photos of the Sully doll, I cut him away from the cardboard thinking it would make a better photograph without it in the background. Unfortunately, without the cardboard box Sully won’t sit up straight; he just flops over. Not a good photography model. So the joke’s on me for cutting him away from his packaging. Sometimes I learn more than one thing a day.

Creedmoor Blooms (1)

Our spring is in full bloom here in central Texas and I decided to take some time to photograph what Mother Nature is providing. I counted 17 flowers around the yard but photographing them turned out to be one of those things easier said than done. Here is the first set.



My routine was to put on my boots (as the ground was still wet from rain), go out with my camera, photograph the flowers, come back in, take off my boots, load the photographs to the computer, and review them.



Oh, it was easy enough to photograph the flowers, but when I reviewed the photos, I started out with about a 50% blurry rate. That meant putting on my boots again, going back outside, photographing some of them again, coming back in, taking off my boots, loading the photos to the computer, and reviewing them. Talk about a ‘rinse and repeat’ cycle.

Evening Primrose with small guest

Evening Primrose with small guest

I did this seven times. Seven times to get photos of 17 flowers. I know it’s not this hard for everyone, but I am mostly teaching myself and there seems to be only one way to learn: The Hard Way.

Honeysuckle vine that found its way to the top of an Italian Stone Pine tree

Honeysuckle vine that found its way to the top of an Italian Stone Pine tree

This is a good time to mention that I wasn’t just taking one photo of each flower. I took several photos of each flower. I changed my distance and position in relation to the flower. I changed the aperture. I changed the ISO setting. I changed the shutter speed. And sometimes I had only blurry photos.

Back outside I went.

I’ve taken beginning DSLR photography classes, read books, read online articles, checked out the Nikon website. Most recently I attended a wildflower photography workshop and came home with about the same success rate: 50%.

Honeysuckle vine on the fence

Honeysuckle vine on the fence

I learned a lot in the workshop and I learned a lot from my workshop failures, but those I didn’t see until I loaded the 237 photos to my computer at home once the workshop was over. I haven’t had a miracle insight or anything as to why so many of my photos are bad, but I’m getting a clue. I hope. I will continue to work on learning the correct manual settings.

I’ll just keep putting on my boots and going outside.