Pop Quiz Answers

So a few days ago, I posted a pop quiz for those of you who followed my 365 project. Unsurprisingly, no one came up with any answers, though some promised to look again on a bigger screen, or with glasses, or somesuch.

So here are the answers:

1. Seven objects that were featured at various points in the 365 project appear in this image. Name all seven.
The kaleidoscope; the little chrome thingy from a mens urinal; whatever it’s called; the Maneki Neko; the lamp base; the melted lighter; the handle of my beloved (and now destroyed) 1970 VW Beetle; and the pin screen.

2. Of the 7 objects, one appeared far more than any of the others. Which one?
The kaleidoscope appeared the most, by far.

3. How many times was this object featured in the 365 (not including today)?
The kaleidoscope appeared 20 times, on days 118, 121, 124-132 (inclusive), 144-148 (inclusive), 150, 153, and 175. Nothing else even came close.

4. Two other objects made numerous appearances. Name one and how many times it appeared (not including today)? Bonus: Name both and count both.
The VW handle appeared 7 times, on days 46-52 (inclusive).
The Pin Screen appeared 8 times, on days 61-65 (inclusive), 123, 178, and 179.

The other two questions were subjective short answers, that really required no response, I suppose.

Thanks to everyone for their support throughout the 365 project, especially the curators of the Google+ 365 project, as well as all those who commented, +1’d on various social media sites or even wished me well subconsciously! It was a great and difficult project: I’m glad I did it and glad it’s over, though I’m finding it difficult to leave the camera on the shelf today, and thinking I should get started on a alternate version of the 365 immediately… Oh well. Such is the nature of habits, I suppose.

365.369 ready for a new year

And this will be the last daily photo, for this round, anyway. I might, one day, do the 365 again, and, who knows, I might go crazy and just keep going (but I doubt it).

This got quite a bit more post processing than is my usual, all due to an attempt to “expose to the right” instead of my usual “let it fall where it may” (usually to the left).

I should’ve given it one more go, dropped the SB700 to 1/2 power, or stopped down, or something, but by this point (53 shots in; after finding the D7000 refused to focus on a timer, refused even to start the timer without anything in focus, so I had to fetch something roughly me-sized and prefocus on it, manually, as the D7000 refused to focus on it either; after finding the batteries mostly dead in the SB700; after cursing at my #&$*#(@ hair; etc.) my back was screaming at me, and I was screaming at the camera, flashes, and self, and so this is it.

I had to burn/polarize/intensify contrast on my face to get any sort of skin tone out of it, then erase all that out of my lips as they had turned the color of my hoodie, then darken up the brick and lighten up the firebox, and I don’t even know what else.

And then to find that it’s not quite in focus. Bah.

This is pretty much the story of my (first, maybe) 365, and so I suppose it’s a good way to end it.

At least I look peaceful, here.

And so this marks the end of 2012, the end of the 365 project, and very probably the end of my regular usage of Aperture, as 1) Lightroom is burning a hole in the Dock and 2) Aperture had to rebuild its library yesterday and I had to force quit it just now. I’m not sure Lightroom will be any better, but at least it will be new for a bit, and something different to curse at in the future…

Happy New Year, G+!

And thanks again to the fine curators of the 365 group! I wouldn’t have made it without your support and encouragement, and I definitely owe you all a beer or something.

D7000. Sigma 30mm f/1.4. ISO200, 1/40th, f/4. Vivitar auto 200 flash, triggered by a Cactus V5 trigger and firing into the firebox; SB700, SU-4’d, at full power, firing into a half collapsed umbrella high camera left. About 5 minutes of post processing in Aperture.

365.368 last sunrise with the iPhone 4

Well, I went and did it… I didn’t intend to, but I ended up at the Apple store, and so I pulled the trigger on an iPhone 5. I didn’t really need a new phone, but I spent much of the morning fighting with technology of various types, and I did need a treat of some sort. Chocolate or a milkshake would’ve likely been better ideas, but neither were there in the Apple store with me, so…

I shot this gorgeous sunrise on the way to take the laundry out this morning. It was so pretty that I stopped and shot a few frames. I’m glad I did, too, because I have no will left to pull out the big camera and make a picture, or even to try one with the new phone.

Oh well. It’s almost dinner time, many of my tedious tech projects will end overnight tonight or early tomorrow, and I’ll hopefully be able to spend a couple of days actually relaxing on this end of year vacation.


iPhone 4. Built-In camera app in HDR mode. Two shots combined and tweaked in TrueHDR, then had a B/W luminance layer added in Filterstorm, then went to Dynamic Light to blow up the color a bit, then back to Filterstorm for the crop I forgot to make earlier.

I’ll miss you, iPhone 4. You were my first smartphone, and you were the one that got me shooting seriously. Here’s hoping your cousin can be even half the camera you are.

365.367 Olive

Well, I shot a bunch earlier today—went by the old apartment to take loads of pictures of how nice and clean it is for when the former landlords try to charge me for cleaning it…—and kind of had to force myself to find something to shoot this afternoon.

Luckily, cats are always around. Unfortunately, this apartment is just as dark as the last one…

Fortunately, I’ve been wanting to try some impressionist photography, though I would prefer to do it consciously, rather than have it (or something like it) occur largely by chance…

But I like this picture anyway, and it’s loads more interesting and fun than all the ones I made this morning.

D7000. Vivitar 70-210mm f/3.5 Series 1 (Kiron, maybe), in Macro mode. ISO800, 1.6 seconds (AP mode), f/3.5. About 45 seconds of processing in Aperture.

365.366 pop quiz

1. Seven objects that were featured at various points in the 365 project appear in this image. Name all seven.

2. Of the 7 objects, one appeared far more than any of the others. Which one?

3. How many times was this object featured in the 365 (not including today)?

4. Two other objects made numerous appearances. Name one and how many times it appeared (not including today)? Bonus: Name both and count both.

5. What would you have liked to see more of?

6. What would you have liked to see less of?

Answers will be provided in the coming days.

D7000. Vivitar 70-210mm f/3.5 Series 1 (Kiron, maybe). ISO800, 1/40th, f/3.5. Minimal white balance correction and a very slight crop in Aperture.


365.365 and… Done!

Yep. That’s 365 in a row.

But that’s not what I’m done with… (I’ll keep this up through the end of 2012, at least.)

The new apartment is all put together and ready to be lived in! (Except for the desk, which is, as always, a bit of a mess, what with various receipts that need to be filed and the last five or so things that need to find their space in the new place.)


On to the shooting of this… I started out dirty and unshaven. I took a bunch of pictures from the same vantage point (the front door),^ and with me in various spots, but nothing worked. The two shots that were any good at all came near the end of the first 60 tries, after the battery on the remote release went kaput and I had to switch to self-timer mode and start running back and forth.

I got fed up, went and had a shower, pulled out the SB-700 and umbrella and started trying again, but try as I might, I couldn’t get the glare off both my glasses and the glossy photos on the right of the frame.

So, for a lark, I collapsed the umbrella halfway, and voila!

(I took four more after this, but they all had something going against them: hair was too unkempt; stuff was growing out of my back or my double chin was in full effect. This would’ve been better with me sitting on the sofa, but there’s no minimizing the double chin while reclining on a sofa, not that I’ve found anyway, so I went for the ‘king surveying his kingdom’ pose, which really doesn’t work for my personality much… or maybe it does…  Anyway.)

I was quite pleased with the half-collapsed umbrella, and plan to employ it more going forward.

So. My back is very sore, my brain is a bit fuzzy and I’m in a general state of near-exhaustion from lack of nourishment, but now I can relax and enjoy the rest of 2012, cause the last big project is DONE!


D7000. Nikkor 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5 G @12mm. ISO800 (leftover from yesterday: dumbass), 1/60th, f/3.8 (wide open at 12mm). SB700, SU-4’d, with its CTO panel in place, at 1/4 power, fired into a silver, half-collapsed umbrella at camera left, and triggered by the pop-up at 1/128th. Minimal post processing to get the colors corrected and bring out the shadows and highlights a bit in Aperture, all in all maybe a minute of post.

^In case you’re interested, the restroom is in that little hallway behind and to the right of me; that’s the bedroom behind. To the right of the green chair, there’s an opening into the dining area/office, and on to the kitchen with a little patio out back.

365.364 Ohne Titel

I was walking back from the first laundry run at the new apartment, looking for 365 possibilities, and I spotted the leaves on the left.

4 shots later, I was done, but for a title…

The heart shape of these leaves calls up some fairly obvious themes, methinks, but my limited imagination couldn’t do anything with it.

I say ‘limited’ largely due to the flurry of activity I’ve been involved in today, and the virtual fog that settled over the brain about an hour and a half ago.

Oh well. It’s a pretty enough picture anyway, and it has some nice compositional bits that sorta make it work for me, and I’m happy with it, so GoGo.

And may I say again how much I love the Vivitar 70-210 Series 1? Have I mentioned it before? This lens is insanely sharp, gives great bokeh, has good color rendition, and just shines all around, and I got it for $40. There’s a reason the first 3 models of this lens are legendary, after all, so I’m merely adding a few words to the chorus.

D7000. Vivitar 70-210mm f/3.5 Series 1 (Kiron, maybe), in Close Focus mode. ISO800, 1/640th (AP mode), f/3.5, -1EV. About 30 seconds of slider play in Aperture.