San Juan Yachting

Today is the day we started another boating adventure in the San Juan Islands.  We arrived at San Juan Yachting in Bellingham, Washington to attended the skippers / safety officers meeting with the rest of the charter guests.  This is a great company to do business with.  They make you feel like family.

After the meeting we an opportunity to get on the boat and figure out all the systems (with help from documentation and experience) before the checkout skipper came on board to answer any questions.  After about an hour, he left the boat and said, “Have a great vacation.”  I think we will.

Its off to a late dinner, then back to the boat for our first night of sleep on the water.


While mountain biking at nearby Avimor, just I came across a sunflower that caught my eye. My initial thought was to capture a simple to grab image while still straddling the bike. I took my iPhone out of my pocket and grabbed this image.


It was an “okay” photo but I wanted more. Being late in the day, the sun was near the horizon, so I got off the bike and low to the ground to get some sky in the image. Then I wondered what it would look like with the sun directly behind the sunflower. I like it much better than my original image.




Each day this week I will be sharing some of what we’ve been enjoying in our back yard.  We live next to a canal that are frequented by several families of ducks.  Spring starts out with just the adults, then we start to see some babies show up.  It is a real blessing to see these cute creatures and be able to get close to them.

The week starts out with the above photograph of a mother Mallard and her babies.

Here is a close-up of some of the babies.


While sitting in a waiting room this morning I decided to see what images could be captured around me. I looked over at the window blinds and thought I would see what I could make out of that.
The image was captured on my iPhone, then cropped and changed into a “sketch” using the Photoshop iPhone application.
Anyway, this is what I came up with. It’s amazing to see what can be done on a phone these days.

Here is a slightly different spin to an autumn photo. With autumn comes shorter days and this is reflected in the photo as I arrived at work which is much different than I experience during the summertime.

When the sun goes down, try a shot or two and see what you come up with.

Taken with my iPhone camera.


dessertMy wife and had a great dinner the other night at a local restaurant named “The Game Keeper.” We ordered dessert and it looked so fancy that I had to grab a photo of it with the iPhone.

This chef is quite an artist!




droboThis post really doesn’t have much to do with photography exactly, but more how to protect all those photos you have taken over the years. 

I found out last week that CDs and DVDs are not as reliable as I thought they were.  Actually, in my particular case, it wasn’t the actual CD, but the paper disk label attached to the CD that caused the problem.  The paper label shrunk over time actually warping the CD into a very slight dish shape.  If you set the CD on a flat surface, the edges of the CD were actually about 3/16 of an inch higher than the center.  My CD reader would read the center of the disk just fine, but it had big problems the closer it got to the outside edge of the CD.  Fortunately, I had a backup of the backup and was able to read “most” of those.  I’ll have to see about getting the label off the bad CD to see if I can read the data.

So, what is my solution?  Copy all of my photos to hard disk storage.  In particular to a new device on the market called a Drobo.  I purchased one and put 2, 1TB drives in it.  When I run out of space, I add another drive, or replace an existing drive with a larger one.  Very cool technology.

This isn’t my only solution.  I also use USB hard drives as a 2nd and 3rd backup for anything I consider important.  Lastly, I use a service called Carbonite to move the most critical data to an offsite location.

You should visit Managing Your Digital Life to read all about managing your precious photos and data.  They have some very good information on the site and you’ll see they love the Drobos as much as I do.

Keep everything backed up!


2009-03-12This photo really not a field of blue, but a bunch of rooftops made out of blue tarps. These tarps cover some power boats as they sit in the water at a marina on Lake Coeur d’Alene in Idaho.

I like the dominant blue color and the nice angles of the rooflines.





2009-03-01I almost forgot to post Alle’s March calendar photo.  Here it is.

She was posing at a great place on our hardwood floor where a lot of lines point in right at her, directing your focus.

The photo was taken with an off camera flash, giving some shadows and an nice catch light in the eyes.