Friday, August 30, 2013

Katie 48 days post-amp

After attempting to take a few more pictures of Katie in the early evening light while I had her standing on our front lawn and not being happy with the results, I led both her and Sadie back to our front door to let them inside. While Katie was standing there, waiting, I took one snap and hoped I could at least get a bit of eye color to show up.

Most of the time her eyes look like a couple of black holes in her face. And if you try to compensate for that by opening up your aperture more, you'll overexpose her white fur too much.

I really cropped closely around her eyes, and used an adjustment brush to lighten them to make them a little more visible. At first I thought I should add a little warmth to eliminate the bluish tint (it comes from standing in the shade) by increasing the white balance temperature but I thought, nah -- I liked it better this way. I also sharpened her eyes and the area between them a little, but not too much.

Katie is coming along nicely: she weighs nearly four pounds more than after losing her leg. She barks at the inivisible mailman, sometimes claws us with her leg, and leaps into the back of our van when she goes for a ride.

Speaking of rides, I have another picture to share...

(Shot with the Nikon D600 using the 50mm f/1.8 lens; aperture-priority, with aperture set to f/2.8; shutter speed 1/500 second at ISO 800; center-weighted; auto white balance; shot in RAW, converted to DNG and imported into Lightroom.)

Monday, August 26, 2013

What is yours is mine...

...and what is mine, is mine.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, Katie...I get it: you might be minus a limb but you still claim my pillow any chance you get.

Katie was 41 days post-amp when this picture was taken.

(Shot with the Nikon D600 using the 50mm f/1.8 lens; aperture-priority, with aperture set to f/1.8, shutter speed 1/50 second at ISO 220; auto white balance; normal JPG; imported and converted to black-and-white using Lightroom.)

Friday, August 23, 2013

Katie 25 days post-amp

I needed an excuse to practice with my Pocket Wizards and the SB-800 flash, so I decided I'd try them out with Katie as I had never made even a half-serious attempt to try them on her yet.. I had made an attempt with her previously by taking her outside and using my umbrella, but it was clear from the one picture where she stood still long enough that I didn't know what I was doing. So just to simplify things I tried to get a picture of her indoors, dispense with the umbrella stand and just hold the flash in my left hand while holding the camera with my right.

Katie was clearly up to posing for me as I took a few snaps: she'd been feeling more like herself after her first chemo dose a couple of weeks earlier. So it wasn't too hard to get her attention by saying a few choice words to her and ending up with a picture this:

I bounced the flash off the ceiling and used a large aperture to blur the background. After importing the picture into Lightroom I lightened and added a bit of clarity and saturation to her eyes. It's not a good picture by any means, but I wanted to capture that expression of hers.

(Shot with the Nikon D600, SB-800, and Pocket Wizards; aperture priority with aperture set to f/2.8 at 1/60 second and ISO 400; center-weighted; normal JPG.)

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Eric (2001 - 2013)

Our daughter's greyhound boyfriend, Eric, was put down this past weekend. They were always happy to see each other when he visited the animal hospital where she works. I was lucky to have photographed Eric for two consecutive years in Solvang during the greyhound gathering there.

I will remember him for a distinctive scar on his face:

He always struck me as being happy all the time:

I will remember him for his running in several of the Solvang Streaks -- running with a wild abandon as he sped from one end of the enclosed run to the other. He was so excited to go after the lure -- and had such a hard time with letting go of it once he had captured it.

This picture that I took of him running in the 2009 Solvang Streak makes me smile every time I see it:

He has the lure in his sights, and he will not be denied.

I am glad that he was Rachel's greyhound boyfriend -- I'm only sorry that their relationship did not last longer.

(Shot with the Nikon D300 using the 70-200mm VR zoom; shutter-priority mode, with shutter speed set at 1/2000 second at f/5.6 at ISO 800; cloudy weather white balance; normal JPG.)

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Getting into a habit

Since Katie's amputation the girls have gotten into the habit of wanting to nap in the back of our van.

(Taken with the iPhone and processed using Camera Awesome.)

Monday, August 5, 2013

Katie hears a noise -- 11 days post-amp

By eleven days post-amp, when this picture was taken, Katie had been going outdoors to lie on our front lawn for awhile. Sometimes she would take a short nap in the sun; other times I thought it was to get out of the house at night because it was cooler outdoors.

Before spending a few minutes on the front lawn with her, I had my iPhone with me and tried to get a few pictures. I lay prone on the sidewalk to get a little below her eye level. Then I waited for a moment. I used the Camera Awesome app to get this vintage effect of Katie hearing something going on in the alley across the street:

Sometimes I don't feel like taking my Nikon outside: it's so much easier to just pull my iPhone out of my pocket and take a snap. Cell phone cameras were terrible when they first came out, but the iPhone camera is very good, and it is so easy to share a photo on Facebook with those you know.