#SundayStills: The Pros and Cons of #Silence


Living in today’s society, I find it very hard to experience silence.

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#SundayStills: Monthly Color Challenge: #Gray and #White


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#SundayStills: Taking the #Plunge in Overcoming Fear


Over the weekend, I took a big leap in the first step to overcome my newly-developed fear of claustrophobia.

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#SundayStills: Reflection on 2022 (Part 2)


I thought about linking this week’s SundayStills with the post I published on December 30 but then I suddenly there was an entire portion I completely forgot happened in 2022 – the garden.

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#SundayStills: Monthly Color Challenge: #Cobalt Blue


I woke up yesterday morning to a strange sky. The front of my house was bathed in sunshine while the back of my house was this very dark blue sky.

Correction: it wasn’t the sky that was this dark blue, it was the clouds.

We had a storm warning, you see. We’re supposed to get around 5-6 inches of snow between Sunday night and Tuesday morning. We shall see about that.

I ran back up to my room, grabbed the camera, changed to the 18-400 mm lens and rushed back down. It was less than a minute, tops but the sky was no longer this dark intense purplish blue. Instead, it was a lighter, still darker shade of blue. Still, I panned the camera around looking for a composition and found one with my neighbor’s aspen trees. The sun was shining on the white branches at that moment.

I actually had to look it up how dark is the color cobalt blue. The color reminded me of the times when I would use a CPL (Circular Polarizer Lens) filter on my camera and all the skies in the picture would be an unnatural shade of blue. Cobalt blue was that color.

I no longer use any filter on my camera, except maybe a ND (neutral-density) filter when I shoot long-exposures. The screwing on and off the filter is quite bothersome in my opinion as it not only takes time but each time when I tried to take the lens filter off, my anxious mind would begin playing out the worst scenarios.

So I’d say, “screw it,” I don’t need filters.

This was one of my favorite photos taken in Niagara Falls, by the way. I have been practicing my sun-star photography when I can. I read somewhere about sun-star photography can tell how many (blades?) is in a lens.

I remember that morning, just walking along the path, checking every few seconds to minutes, hoping the sun would just rise above the clouds, even just for a few seconds because I wanted to photograph the full sun, not just half of the sun with a cloud beneath.

At last, the sun had risen above the clouds. I set the camera to the lowest f-stop and clicked. I wanted to click another one but by the time I checked the photo and tried to focus again, a cloud has once again covered the bottom half of the sun. I was glad I got one though.

#SundayStills

#SundayStills: Home #Town


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#SundayStills: #Vivid Memories of Early Photography Days


✋I am raising my virtual hand, Terri! I do remember the WordPress Weekly Photo Challenges.

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#SundayStills: Monthly Color Challenge #Leather and Brown


Leather nowadays comes in all kind of colors – red, blue, green – all it takes is a little dye. However, for this week’s #SundayStills challenge, the color focused on is leathery brown. Hope you enjoy my gallery of browns.

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#SundayStills: #Paths and #Trails to my Happy Places


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#SundayStills: Nature is Sure #Mysterious


I agree with Terri, nature is mysterious. It can turn such thing as a tree into a fossil if it lived long enough.

Looking at the topic this week, which is mysterious, I thought about my visit to the Petrified Forest State Park in 2021. Note that this is the state park in Utah, not the national park in Arizona. Petrified Forest State Park is much smaller but it’s still an awesome place to visit.

We paid our entrance fee, parked the car, and spent a few hours exploring the park on foot, which is kind of mandatory given the petrified forest is located along a single trail.

It’s sure a mystery how these trees managed to survive this long as all around them, civilization thrived. I’d bet these trees have seen things, encountered plenty of natural events, and probably once lived with dinosaurs. It’s just amazing to think of all the things that have happened to these trees to have it survive to today. Nature is sure a wonderful mystery.

#SundayStills: Photographing through Window #Glass


I do not like photographing anything – especially landscapes – through any kind of window or glass. It not only distorts the color temperature – makes the scene look cold when it’s supposed to be warm, add green when there shouldn’t be green, and don’t get me started about cloud colors – it’s a nightmare when it comes to editing these photos in Lightroom.

Sometimes though, I can’t say I have a choice like unless I suddenly sprout a pair of wings, there’s no way I could photograph in the open air more than a hundred stories above ground. I took these with my phone, by the way, in RAW before uploading them to Lightroom and stitching them to make a large panorama. If I remember, each of these images are made up of 9 to 11 images stitched together. The smaller focal lengths of the phone’s camera really helps sometimes.

I thought these came out great except for the bit of reflection, which as hard as I tried, I couldn’t get rid of them.

As much as I don’t like it, sometimes, it is the way to go and I got a few favorites that were taken through the window while the car was moving or through a plain old window.

#SundayStills

#SundayStills: Autumn’s Fleeting Moments


Seeing full-blown autumn colors can definitely classify as a fleeting moment as it’s constantly changing from near peak to peak to past peak. Yesterday was most likely the last real weekend to see autumn colors as we are expecting the temperature to drop about 10-degrees and rain this coming weekend. In my opinion, once rain comes, autumn colors are no longer pretty.

Yesterday’s trip was all my mom’s idea. She saw one of her co-workers post photos of Bridal Veil Falls in Provo Canyon and thought it was pretty. Next thing I knew, she was calling her sister and brother-in-law (BIL), asking them if they were interested. Of course, they were. They’re off every other weekends and after this weekend, they will be working all the way into November. So I wrote, probably the last weekend for autumn colors.

Her BIL was driving. It’s always him who drives and it was a good thing it was him who was driving because I ended up sorta tricking everyone to go to the place I wanted to go.

The whole trip, for me, was full of fleeting moments because I was traveling with three adults who did not want to walk. My mom has back pain and can’t walk a few steps without complaining. She’s currently waiting to do surgery to fix that problem. Meanwhile, her sister and BIL just didn’t want to walk. They aren’t out of shape, they just prefer to sit and look at their phones all day.

Thankfully, they let me roam, for a very short time at least like a dog on a leash. If I venture too far, my phone instantaneously rings, one of them telling me to get back to the car. So I needed to walk fast and take as many photos as I could so I can have it for memory.

This was the my first time going to Provo Canyon. I’ve always stuck to the Alpine Loop as it’s closer to home and I happen to think it’s more beautiful up by Mount Timpanogos with all the aspen trees. If you’ve ever been in the area, you’ll know what I mean. Even in summer, it’s beautiful with its white trunks and its leaves dancing to the breeze. I made a trip there back in August (before the accident) and couldn’t get enough of the place.

I fell in love with this picture as soon as I blew it up on my laptop. Another fleeting moment as we were parked in one of those tiny turnout on the road and as soon as I got out of the car, my mom began yelling, “How can you do such thing?” She was talking about how I led her BIL to the Alpine Loop when I knew fully that it’d be a narrow road that required drivers of one direction to yield to oncoming traffic.

I drove on this road before and didn’t encounter any problem. The only one that might have a problem might be my mom as she doesn’t do well in narrow road situations.

Anyway, I ignored her and focused on finding compositions. After all, I only get this one shot and everyone was waiting on me, so I must make it quick despite I could stare at this golden landscape for hours, maybe days.

The Alpine Loop was surprisingly crowded. I’ve never seen so much traffic that it was backed up. Perhaps maybe because many people knows to come here to see fall colors and that this would probably be the last weekend of 2022 to see such color.

After my accident, I became very anxious whenever something comes too close to the passenger side of the car, almost like a kind of claustrophobia. With the traffic, my uncle was forced to steer the car toward the trees a few times, causing me to panic as I seem to be doing quite a bit lately. These were definitely moments I didn’t want to remember from the trip and was relieve when we were no longer on the narrow road.

All in all, I am very grateful for the trip as I got a photos for memories despite my time there was very limited. I guess my goal to see autumn colors in 2022 is now fulfilled.

#SundayStills

#SundayStills: Monthly Color – #Lava


This week, Terri at Second Wind Leisure Perspectives is challenging everyone with the color of Lava or a mix of orange, dark brown, and black. What an unusual mix of colors…

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#SundayStills: #Closeup on Garden Raspberries


I cannot believe the day has at last arrived!

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#SundayStills: Monthly Color – #Apricot


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#Staycation or #Vacation #SundayStills


The last two days might had been the most boring days ever. I did almost zilch.

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The Garden – A Constant Work in Progress #Construction #Sundaystills


I am going to put a spin on this week’s #SundayStills because, to me, #construction isn’t always about buildings. There is construction going on in nature as well. In fact, nature is always working on something.

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#SundayStills – Monthly Color Challenge: #Mustard


I never really liked the condiment mustard – the yellow stuff that’s famous on burgers and hot dogs, even though I’ve never really tried it.

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#SundayStills – The Epitome of #Summertime


Summer has had a lot of meaning for me.

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#SundayStills – No #Dessert but Plenty of #Desert


The theme for this week’s SundayStills is a bit quirky – Dessert or Desert.

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#SundayStills – All About #Roadtrip


The theme for this week’s SundayStills is all about road trips, whether it’s recent or long past. For the last few years, I’ve had at least one road trip each year. They were all memorable in one way or another and I still find myself reflecting on them from time to time.

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#SundayStills – Monthly Color Challenge: #Ruby


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#SundayStills – #Beaches


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