Zenfolio | Dave Skinner Photography | April 2015 Challenge

April 2015 Challenge

May 05, 2015

This will be our final Challenge post.  I want to thank everyone for their participation and encouragement.  We can always post photos on our Facebook pages if we don't use Flickr, Shutterfly, SmugMug, 500 Pixels, Google+, Photobucket, or Zenfolio, to name a few.  After 2 1/2 years of a huge variety of pictures, it's time to move off the stage.

The theme for the month of April was "Your Favorite Photos."




Don traveled all the way to downtown Paso Robles for an event shoot and captured the heart and soul of some classic vintage cars, as well as sidecars. He says, "I managed to sneak off to the sidecar rally in the park and got a few pics, but not much.  The weather was wet early morning, and I was surprised that so many people showed.  They also had a few vintage cars."

Without the sun's glare, the overcast skies provided just the right lighting to catch all the detail and color in these vehicles.  Have you driven a Jaguar lately?  Nice angle, Don.  The low and wide angle makes this car look a lot heftier than it really is and emphasizes the front end detail of British pride.





Some of us have owned Grease Slappers if it refers to dirty, greasy cars and trucks we've had the pleasure of cleaning.  Or if we used Dixie Peach Pomade back in the 50's and 60's to keep our hair slicked down.   I assume this is a sidecar or gas tank logo.  The American mind: it's a creative thing.





Wet and wild green thing is next up.  The proverbial and ever-popular MG.  Another British icon.  Looks like a 1952 model to me.  But what do I know?





Just what are we looking at here, Don?  Is this like a surfboard that you stand on while scooting down the freeway?  Isn't there supposed to be a seat attached?  Must be detached due to the rain.  Looks like a smooth ride.





I think Don is musing the possibility of adding a sidecar to his Harley.  That was the shortest muse he ever mused.  Janet is happy.





Don's last photo is accompanied by a story:  "The lady in the last pic rode in from Prescott, AZ. she mentioned camping out at the Paso RV park north of town. I asked her if she was tenting it.  She said no, she's 5' 3" tall and her side car is 5' 7" long.  She takes all her gear out and sleeps in it. I'd guess she was in her mid 50's.  The lady has some grit!"

True grit: it's a rare commodity these days.  Thanks for sharing, Don.







Dave's photos are the usual stuff - nature - local university - more nature.  He can't get away from the same ol' thing.  This first shot of the moon was taken during the last part of the most recent full eclipse we had.  As the moon 'descended' toward the horizon, earth's shadow descended also.  Taken at Cosumnes River Preserve before sunrise - geese in formation in the distance. 



(c) Dave Skinner Photography



I stuck around after the moonset and found a pair of American avocets, foraging in the water.  This bird has very striking colors, easy to spot and very active. 



(c) Dave Skinner Photography



The rose garden at the local museum had its premier showing a few weeks ago.  Sometimes the abstract is worth capturing, even if it does have an ugly fly in the frame.  As I look at it now, I probably should have cut back on the cyan from the sky reflection on the lower petal, limiting it to three main colors (including white - sorry, all you artists out there).  Putting an insect in your photo sets up a tension between the soft, serene and beautiful and the rough, alien and threatening.  This ruins the whole picture for most people, but I like a little shock and awe here and there.



(c) Dave Skinner Photography



And so for you purists who love perfection, here you go: no distractions!



(c) Dave Skinner Photography



I competed in a Black and White photo challenge for the Stockton Record and sent this photo, along with others taken at UOP, a local cemetery and local marina.  A fun project, trying to pre-visualize what your color shot will look like after converted to B&W.  I so wished there had been a bit more cirrus clouds overhead, but am happy with what God gave me, anyway. 



(c) Dave Skinner Photography



I returned to the Preserve mid-month, the day after it rained, hoping to get some nice sunrise shots, but no clouds were to be seen.  But the rain had drenched everything, especially the tall grasses in the fields.  Its weight bowed the grass so it looked like waves being blown about. 



(c) Dave Skinner Photography



Watching nature's wonders is one of the reasons I like visiting the Preserve.  I spotted three freshly emerged Green darners sunning themselves on the cattails right after sunrise.  The were good little posers, so it was pretty easy to get as close as I could (about 5'-6').  I like the detail in this picture, the left over water drops on the reeds and the shadows.  These guys won't bite and if you've got the knack, will perch on your finger. Ha!   





My very last picture is taken under one of my favorite oaks at the Preserve, complete with viewing bench which overlooks a backwater filled with floating plants, reeds and critters.  You can usually see an egret or heron here.  This tree is massive and gnarled.  It's missing some branches after all these years, but it still maintains a majestic shape.  I opened up the shadows in Photoshop for more bark detail. 



(c) Dave Skinner Photography





And so ends this journey and adventure.  I hope you learned some stuff, were encouraged, and smiled at the shenanigans.  Over and out, fellow fotogs.  May your best photos be right around that next bend in the road. 




January (1) February (1) March (2) April May (1) June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December