Photographs by Frank

6 April 2019

Meandering Home

Filed under: architecture,Early Spring — Frank @ 11:29 PM

This morning one of my monthly therapy photography groups met at the Vermont Center for Photography in Brattleboro, VT. After more photo talk over lunch I headed back across the river and pointed the truck in the direction of home… well sorta!

I meandered through West Chesterfield, Westmoreland, Walpole, Alstead, Ackworth, Lempster, Washington and Hillsborough before arriving home in Antrim around 6:30. Along the way, I even made a few photographs in some of those towns.

Shown here are the photographs made using my camera obscura.

I also made additional exposures with my regular camera for an experiment that came out of the discussions this morning. Those will require some thought and processing before they are ready to be shown… all in due time.

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Church, West Chesterfield, NH
Church, West Chesterfield, NH
West Chesterfield, NH
West Chesterfield, NH
Park Hill Meetinghouse, Westmoreland, NH
Park Hill Meetinghouse, Westmoreland, NH
Meetinghouse, Ackworth, NH
Meetinghouse, Ackworth, NH
Trees, Ackworth, NH
Trees, Ackworth, NH
Ackworth, NH
Ackworth, NH
Washington, NH #1
Washington, NH #1
Washington, NH #2
Washington, NH #2

3 April 2019

Common Mergansers

Filed under: Birds,Early Spring,Monadnock Region,Wildlife — Frank @ 10:30 PM


Despite the inch of snow we got last night, spring is coming slowly to our neck of the woods. The new snow was gone by 10 AM. One sign that spring is nigh. Additionally, the local lakes and ponds are starting to show some open water and the birds are beginning to return. In the past week or so, we have been hearing sparse bird songs in the woods and a few waterfowl have appeared.

Late this morning Joan called me from Memorial Park (where she was doing some spring cleaning of the flower beds) . The news was that there was a pair of common mergansers on the Mill Pond. Of course, I dropped what I was doing, broke out Big Bertha for the first time in some months and headed downtown.

In addition to the mergansers there was a pair of geese present. The midday light was high and harsh. Terrible, especially, for photographing a black and white bird. I knew that “keepers” were unlikely but I spent an hour or so watching and photographing just for practice before heading home.

A few hours later, I returned to town to run some errands and stopped by the pond again to see if the birds were still around; both the geese and the mergansers were still there. Although the sun was still pretty high, the light was a bit better as there were some scattered clouds. I spent another hour or so photographing the mergansers.

Catching a merganser with prey on the surface was a rare treat. Generally, as with most diving birds, mergansers swallow their the prey while under water. One sees them with prey only when they are having difficulty in getting the prey down their gullet, as with the fairly large fish here.

Eventually, the wind kicked up and blew my hat into the pond. I got both feet wet retrieving the hat (just before it sank out of sight). and spooked the birds in doing so. I took this as sign to head home.

All of these photos are from the second session. They are more heavily cropped (one third to one half of the full frame) than I would like but mergansers are very wary birds.

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Common Merganser Pair #1
Common Merganser Pair #1
Common Merganser Pair #2
Common Merganser Pair #2
Common Merganser Pair Resting
Common Merganser Pair Resting
Female Common Merganser Hunting
Female Common Merganser Hunting
Female Common Merganser with Prey #1
Female Common Merganser with Prey #1
Female Common Merganser with Prey #2
Female Common Merganser with Prey #2
Common Merganser Pair Cruising
Common Merganser Pair Cruising

24 March 2019

Sugaring

Filed under: Early Spring,Monadnock Region — Frank @ 6:15 PM

March is prime time if you are in the maple syrup business. The sap is flowing and folks are boiling more-or-less constantly.

This weekend a number of local sugar houses were open for “tours”. I put tours in quotes since most sugar houses are small structures and thus a “tour” consists of maybe eight or ten people at maximum standing in a circle around the evaporator.

Joan and I took a break from our regular activities this afternoon and visited two Antrim sugar houses.

I, of course, took my camera along.

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Steam Rising
Steam Rising
The Boil
The Boil
Charlie Tending The Boil
Charlie Tending The Boil
What Fuels It All
What Fuels It All
Sap House Window
Sap House Window
The Boil #2
The Boil #2
Tending The Boil
Tending The Boil

16 March 2019

The M’s of March

Filed under: Landscapes,March,Monadnock Region — Frank @ 12:30 PM

Most folks associate March with “Madness”. For me, March is associated with three other “M words”… Maple, Mud and Meeting. Maple as in maple sap/syrup. Mud as in mud season. Meeting as in Town Meeting. This past week we have had all three of these “M words”.

Yesterday afternoon, I went for a walk. At the end of our driveway, I had a choice… left and the mud of the “civilized” section of the road or right and the slush of the un-maintained section of our road. I opted for the slush.

Of course, I took my camera with me.

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Stone Wall Detail #1
Stone Wall Detail #1
Birch Emerging from the Snow
Birch Emerging from the Snow
Granite and Ice
Granite and Ice
Stone Wall Detail #2
Stone Wall Detail #2
Jane's Barn
Jane's Barn
Untitled
Untitled
Living and Dead #1
Living and Dead #1
Living and Dead #2
Living and Dead #2

11 March 2019

Oh Fig!

Filed under: Still Life — Frank @ 10:11 PM

Joan and her cousin Liz have a fig tree. In the warm weather it is planted (in its pot) outside in the flower bed by one corner of the house. It spends the winter in our basement.

The fig tree must be thinking that spring is coming since it has started sprouting leaves and figs. The other day Joan decided that it might be time to give it some light. Hence, it is now living just inside our front door. It may be there for some time since there is at least a foot of snow on the ground.

This afternoon, the soft directional window light attracted my eye and I decided to make a photograph of a small portion of the fig tree. I hung a black cloth behind the branch I selected and made a few exposures.

Oh, Fig!

9 March 2019

A Walk on the Lake, Part 2: Other Photos

Filed under: Uncategorized — Frank @ 7:05 PM

Of course, there were things other than bob houses to photograph during yesterday’s walk on the lake.

Here are a few of the things that caught my eye:

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Drifted Snow
Drifted Snow
Red Chairs on Dock in Snow
Red Chairs on Dock in Snow
Tracks in the Snow #1
Tracks in the Snow #1
Tracks in the Snow #2
Tracks in the Snow #2
Nominally White #1
Nominally White #1
Nominally White #2
Nominally White #2
Nominally White #3
Nominally White #3

A Walk on the Lake, Part 1: Bob House Details

Filed under: architecture,Monadnock Region,Winter — Frank @ 7:00 PM

Yesterday afternoon was warm (just about freezing) and sunny, perfect for a walk on the lake. There are about half a dozen bob houses out on the lake (and a couple more on the shore by the boat ramp).

To my eye, the structures per se do not make particularly interesting photographs, particularly in the harsh late winter sun. However, there were many details that caught my eye.

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Icicles #1
Icicles #1
Icicles #2
Icicles #2
Icicles #3
Icicles #3
Stove Pipe #1
Stove Pipe #1
Stove Pipe #2
Stove Pipe #2
Stove Pipe #3
Stove Pipe #3
Stove Pipe #4
Stove Pipe #4
Untitled #1
Untitled #1
Truth in Advertising?
Truth in Advertising?
Untitled #2
Untitled #2

5 March 2019

A Day on the Lake

Filed under: Landscapes,Monadnock Region,Winter — Frank @ 10:00 PM

Last Friday (1 March) , we spent most of the day on the lake… literally. The ice is about twenty inches thick.

We headed out before 11 AM and did not get back to the house until almost 4:30. We, there was a group of five of us, spent the day laying out guides and pulling a ground penetrating radar (GPR) apparatus across the ice in order to map the geology of the lake bottom. This was our second GPR session and a third is planned for this coming Thursday.

Of course, I carried my camera and made a few photographs while out and about.

Here they are:

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GPR Rig In Action
GPR Rig In Action
Lake Shore (two frame pano)
Lake Shore (two frame pano)
Lake Shore
Lake Shore
Lake Shore Detail
Lake Shore Detail
Untitled #1
Untitled #1
Untitled #2
Untitled #2
Untitled #3
Untitled #3
Bob House #1
Bob House #1
Bob House #2
Bob House #2

24 February 2019

Old Shells

Filed under: Still Life — Frank @ 12:59 PM

We have a basket containing artifacts brought back from Hawaii in the late 1800’s by some of Joan’s ancestors who were missionaries there. Among the contents of the basket are a number of large (4-6 inch) shells. A few of these made good subjects on a cold gray February afternoon.

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Hawaii Shell #1
Hawaii Shell #1
Hawaii Shell #2
Hawaii Shell #2
Hawaii Shell #3
Hawaii Shell #3
Hawaii Shell #4
Hawaii Shell #4
Hawaii Shell #5
Hawaii Shell #5
Hawaii Shell #6
Hawaii Shell #6

Beware… photography talk head! I made these photographs using a single light source (at camera left) and a reflector (either a piece of white cardboard or a piece of cardboard covered with wrinkled aluminum foil… nothing fancy) to fill the shadows. The background was a piece of black seamless. However, in the end, I replaced the background with uniform black in PhotoShop. It is hard to keep light from spilling on to the background with a small tabletop “studio”. Thus the original background was various shades of gray and speckled with dust. Not the look I wanted.

10 February 2019

Harsh February Light

Filed under: Landscapes,Monadnock Region,Winter — Frank @ 9:59 PM

In some ways we have had typical New Hampshire winter weather… periods of dull drab days and periods of bright, cloudless blue skies. What has not been typical are the multiple periods of warm weather. In the “old days” we would get a January thaw. These days we seem to get a thaw every few weeks.

The latest thaw was a couple of days in the middle of last week. The mud in the road was deep and spring-like. The road crew worked hard to keep it passable.

The last few days have been more typical of February, highs in the mid- to upper 20s F and lows in the low teens. The days have been bright and sunny… good for production by our new solar panels but challenging for photography. I have persisted none-the-less.

The first three photos were made in the last week, with a regular lens. The last six photos were made yesterday using a $20 “Holga lens” that I recently bought on an impulse. This 60 mm lens is all plastic and has a fixed aperture (f/8). Focusing is all manual and rather crude; there are small pictographs along the focus ring to indicate the distance. The resulting photos, all made in harsh February light, have “character”.

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Church Detail (Salisbury, NH)
Church Detail (Salisbury, NH)
Bend in the Road
Bend in the Road
Stone Wall Detail
Stone Wall Detail
Barn Roof
Barn Roof
Stone Wall
Stone Wall
Birches and Stone Wall
Birches and Stone Wall
Mill (Harrisville, NH)
Mill (Harrisville, NH)
Chesham Depot (long inactive)
Chesham Depot (long inactive)
Barn and Flag
Barn and Flag
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