But I Digress… Luminar Flex

Fargo, North Dakota.

Going through some family images, I ran across an image of my brothers who served in the Navy. I am not a US Navy veteran, or an Armed Services veteran of any kind, but most of my brothers served in one branch or another. Two of them, and a brother-in-law and his brother all served on the USS Rochester, CA-124), an Oregon City-class heavy cruiser. When I went looking for images of the ship, I found plenty. I found a lot of history on the ship as well. Commissioned in 1946, she served in Europe, then the Pacific, eventually taking an active part in Korean War operations. It was during those Korean conflict years that my brothers served on her. Continue reading

Cellpic Sunday – 30 August 2020

Jamestown, North Dakota.

Since early in the pandemic, Civil Air Patrol (CAP) has been volunteering for missions to assist state and local agencies in many ways. Given my availability to assist, I’ve been part of North Dakota’s team of volunteers who help coordinate the delivery of PPE, test kits, and other necessary supplies. Early on, our wing’s pilots delivered PPE around the state and even moved supplies between North Dakota, South Dakota, and Minnesota at the request of the respective state governors. For many weeks, our mission in North Dakota went dormant as the supply chain filled up and the National Guard and other agencies were able to support the needs of our healthcare system in the state. Continue reading

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Everyday Objects

This week, Patti asks us to consider “… taking a fresh look at ordinary, everyday objects–things that you see and use in your daily life.” You can check out her challenge post here. As is often the case, I like to put my own spin on the challenge. Instead of picking several examples as Patti did, I focused on one everyday object, the bench. Continue reading

Grand Cayman Beach Photos – Mini-Panos? Huh?

Grand Cayman Island.

The Cayman Islands are on many cruise itineraries. Awhile back, I posted photos from an excursion tour of a labyrinth of caves on Grand Cayman Island. As usual, there is a bus ride to the site of the excursion. Invariably, I find the window by my seat dirty, or the bus is crowded and I don’t get a window seat. Often there isn’t much worth photographing, especially considering the likelihood of reflections through the window glass. I found a trick to get around the reflections. Place the camera lens flat against the window to take your shot. Of course, you can expect some blurry images as vibrations from the vehicle can create motion blur in your entire image. Another source for motion blur is that objects closer to the bus window will be moving relatively faster than objects in the background creating blur in foreground objects only. My antidote for the blurry motion is to select a very fast shutter speed. The opening image, captured as we traveled along a road paralleling the island’s beaches, was captured at 1/8000 sec. Continue reading

Cellpic Sunday – 23 August 2020

Fargo, North Dakota.

The Red River is often a muddy brown because wind and water flow stir up the river bed as the river flows north into Canada and its mouth at Lake Winnipeg. In future weeks, I’ll be focusing on Orchard Glen Nature Park, a small but beautiful area complete with an apple tree orchard. I’ve been stopping by every two weeks or so documenting the changes since last Spring, and I hope to be able to capture some Winter images before we head to Arizona. Continue reading

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Creativity in the Time of COVID

Fargo, North Dakota.

This week, Tina Schell challenges us to share in this time of a major pandemic how we have “found ways to cope with those restrictions through our efforts to maintain our creativity. This week it’s time to focus on those efforts.” She provides hope in the statement, “Knowing that generations past have managed to emerge from pandemics, with far less knowledge of science and pharmacology,” this one shall also pass and Corona will be in the collective memory of the world. You can read her entire challenge post here. Continue reading

Ocean to Ocean Bridge – Connecting a Cross-Country Highway

Yuma, Arizona.

A truss bridge that spans the Colorado River at Yuma is the final highway bridge to connect a road between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Construction completed in 1915, and in 1926, the highway became part of U.S. Route 80, the primary east-west transcontinental highway in the depression era. For a time, the bridge’s deteriorated state resulted in it becoming a pedestrian and bicycle bridge, but after a reconstruction project in 2002, it was restored to vehicle use. Continue reading

Cellpic Sunday – 16 August 2020

Fort Peck, Montana.

Awhile back, I featured an image captured just ahead of a storm that approached the Fort Peck Lake and Dam. As I noted in that post, the dam is the largest manmade hydraulic dam in the world. Constructed during the great depression in the 1930s, it was a WPA project. Montana is known as Big Sky Country. Looking in the opposite direction from the image I posted here on 26 July, the dramatic sky was clearly too big to include in a single exposure. Continue reading

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Under the Sun

The Arizona Deserts, Arizona.

This week, Amy’s challenge for us is to focus on life under the sun. Actually, that’s a broad category considering that all earthbound things are under the sun. She writes that her inspiration came from the title of a book, “Under the Tuscan Sun: At Home in Italy.” You can read her entire challenge post here.

I’ve decided that my response to the challenge will feature images from my adopted state, Arizona. Though most of the images here come from the Sonoran Desert in southern Arizona, the opening photo is from Monument Valley, part of the Colorado Plateau, a desert environment with hot summers and cold winters. Wild horses inhabit the desert that is part of the Navajo Nation. As you can see by the photo, life for them is hard. Continue reading

Honduran Artistry – A Cameo Appearance

Isla Roatan, Honduras.

The craftsman in the opening image isn’t wearing a mask because of the pandemic. He’s an artist working to create cameo designs. I’ve always thought of cameos as small sculpted medallions worn around the neck. What I learned at this cameo shop was to change my notion completely. Let’s start with Marriam-Webster’s definition:

cameo (noun)

1a: a gem carved in relief (see relief entry 1 sense 6) especially: a small piece of sculpture on a stone or shell cut in relief in one layer with another contrasting layer serving as background
b: a small medallion (see medallion sense 2) with a profiled head in relief
2:   a carving or sculpture made in the manner of a cameo Continue reading