Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Casper, Freedom, and Nikki

Last year at Dewey I met Carrie of Tales and Tails fame while shopping at Beth and Pete Wade's place. Around that time another woman named Lori, who is Carrie's friend and writes a greyhound and art blog called What Remains Now, walked in with her husband and their three greyhounds, Casper, Freedom, and Nikki. We chatted briefly, then went on our separate ways.

This past August I got an e-mail from Lori asking to book a session at Dewey. Sure, I said. We agreed to meet on the street by our rental house. So on Saturday afternoon we met and walked over to the beach. There were clouds to shield us from the sun, but when there wasn't it got a little warm for everyone.

This is Casper:


His coloring is very much like our Katie's.

This is Freedom:


(Who doesn't love greyhound ears like this?)

And this is Nikki:


(Her leash was digitally removed.)

And I think I got a couple of decent family pictures:

Front: Casper, Freedom, NikkiBack: Lori, Henry

(I can't say I know what the hounds were looking at.)


Front: Casper, Freedom, NikkiBack: Henry, Lori

Wow...I hadn't noticed that both Casper and Freedom are sitting. (By the way...all this fencing behind them was blown down by Hurricane Sandy this past Monday.) Might make for a decent Christmas card, no?

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Katie's in the 2013 Celebrating Greyhounds calendars

For a number of years now I've been submitting pictures to The Greyhound Project for their Celebrating Greyhounds wall and desk calendars. The past couple of years Sadie had made it into the calendars, but for 2013 it is now Katie's turn.

These calendars are provided to greyhound adoption groups as a means for the groups to raise money. People are invited to submit their pictures to TGP by April, and the greyhounds selected to appear in the following year's calendars are announced in August. There is always a lot of anticipation to see who made it.

I don't envy the job entrusted to those volunteers who must surely go through hundreds, if not thousands, of pictures sent to them from all across the US as well as from Canada and Europe. I think I sent in just seven or eight pictures this time. This picture of Katie was used in the wall calendar:


And this one was used in the desk calendar:


I'm very happy that Katie got in, and happy for all those that made it into the calendars, too. There was also a picture I took of a greyhound named Cian at his session in Gettysburg that was included. Some of the greyhounds I know personally, and some of their owners are very good photographers. Soon it'll be time for me to look at what I've taken of the girls and submit them for the 2014 calendars.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Waiting for the Daddyman

My friend PJ is an avid runner. During Dewey weekend he ran in the short 5k run held to support the fight against cancer. This was not enough, though.

He had brought his two girls, Kali and Zuni, with him this year as he had the year previous. He always takes time to run with his girls on the beach. But when he goes for his runs alone we watch his girls for him. They are not pleased to be left behind, but they are no trouble. They settle in and patiently wait for him to return.

On Sunday it drizzled off-and-on for most of the morning, which put a little damper on things after the two bright, sunny days we had had on Friday and Saturday. But PJ went for his planned run south from Dewey Beach towards Indian River Inlet and beyond anyway. His girls followed him down the stairs and, after he left, lingered by the front door for awhile, waiting and watching.

I saw the girls from the top of the stairs and snapped a quick picture -- just because Greyhound ears amuse me to no end.

(Shot with the Nikon D600 using the 18-35mm zoom lens at 35mm; aperture-priority, with aperture set to f/4.5; camera chose shutter speed of 1/40 second at ISO 250; matrix-metered; auto white balance; normal JPG.)

Wednesday, October 24, 2012


I had two sessions booked at Dewey for Saturday.

Joey was my first customer. She is a striking red. I met her and her owner Ruth across the street from our rental house and led them to the beach. We chit-chatted a bit to get to know each other as we approached the surf. I tried getting some pictures of them running along the water's edge:


Then I thought it might be nice to take a photo of their footprints in the sand (I haven't taken one yet that I've been supremely happy with):


The sunlight was still low enough in the sky so the shadows were not overly harsh.

The most special moment of the session for me was when Joey and Ruth sat on the sand together for awhile. It was soon obvious to me that they have a very close relationship. I decided to stand off a ways and use my wide-angle zoom to show them together under the immense sky that Saturday morning:


I decided to make a virtual copy of this and convert it to black-and-white:


I did the same for the next picture:



Then I thought I'd go in the opposite direction, taking some zoomed-in shots while still far away:


You can see that the large aperture (f/2.8) I was using blurs the background nicely while still retaining enough depth-of-field to keep Joey and Ruth sharp.

Finally, one last shot of them together:


(Shot with the Nikon D300 using the 10-24mm zoom, 50mm prime, and 70-200mm VR zoom lenses; shot in RAW; converted to JPG using Lightroom.)

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Sleeping buddies #2

There are times when you come across something happening, and the moment begs to be captured.

Jen and Skye

(Shot with the Nikon D600 using the 50mm f/1.8 lens at f/2.8; aperture-priority; camera chose 1/50 second at ISO 6400; auto white balance; normal JPG.)

Monday, October 22, 2012

GreySave's Oktoberfest

The weekend after Dewey I went to GreySave's Oktoberfest, which was held at Schabarum Regional Park in Rowland Heights. Fortunately the day was cool enough, and even if it had been hotter there were plenty of trees to sit under for shade. I passed out a lot of brochures advertising my photography, and had a pair of 12x18-inch metal prints to show people what cool things they are.

I decided that I'd use only my new D600, and partner it with my 50mm f/1.8 prime and the 70-200mm f/2.8 VR zoom lenses. Mostly I took head shots. Here are some samples:






Pony and Robyn

The 70-200mm VR zoom (I have the first version) is a wonderful lens to use, although you do have to get used to carrying it. Until I tasted the FX Kool-Aid I have not been able to use it as much as I would have like. Now, however, there's not much of an excuse to not use it.

Towards the end I met up with Camille and her Josie Bean and Bertie. It was nice to see them again; some of the pictures I took of Josie turned out better than the ones I took during their session at the Race to the Park event last spring:

Josie Bean

Josie Bean

Here's a cropped photo of Bertie that I took:


Overall I was very pleased with how I was able to handle the D600 despite my lack of familiarity with it. I will say that I miss having dedicated switches to control metering and focusing modes on the D300 (on the D600 you have to look at either the top panel or look in the viewfinder). But these are not major quibbles -- I'll get used to not having them.

Sunday, October 14, 2012


At Dewey Beach, as dawn broke on Saturday while I stood on the beach I saw a couple approach, pulling a garden wagon along, close to the water's edge. In this wagon rode a brindle hound. I stood and watched for a few moments, then decided to photograph them. After taking four photos, I thought I might stop them and get their and their hound's name, but then I thought better of it: it just seemed better to not disturb their walk together and to let them be. The following picture is the last of the four:

Amelia goes for a ride

The couple turned around and headed back from whence they came. I got a little closer to them this time, and photographed them and their greyhound again after they had passed me by. The hound looked and sniffed, taking everything in:

After I returned from Dewey I shared that first picture, and made the comment that the hound was probably the most-photographed greyhound there. It wasn't too long before I was informed of the greyhound's name ("Amelia") and a bit about she came to use a wagon. She was found as a stray with a bad leg that she couldn't use. Two surgeries were done to repair the leg, but it was ultimately amputated. She can get around well enough as a tripod, but the couple load her into the wagon so she doesn't get tired.

The wife wrote me a few days ago to ask about buying a print. I'm honored that she asked.

(Shot with the Nikon D600 using the 70-200mm VR zoom; aperture-priority with aperture set at f/2.8; camera chose shutter speed of 1/4000 second at 70mm at ISO 100 (top), and 1/800 second at 200mm at ISO 400; center-weighted metered; auto white balance; normal JPG.)

Friday, October 12, 2012

Dewey Beach Friday sunrise

Just add greyhounds...

(Shot with the Nikon D600 using the 18-35mm zoom lens at 18mm; program mode; camera chose 1/20 second at f/3.5 at ISO 2500; auto white balance; matrix-metered; normal JPG.)