Category Archives: Photography

Southern Berkeley street scenes: One afternoon


We begin with a sidewalk doodle. . .

4 October 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 9 mm, 1/1000 sec, f4.4

4 October 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 9 mm, 1/1000 sec, f4.4

A wall with a southern exposure. . .

4 October 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 14.2 mm, 1/800 sec, f5.1

4 October 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 14.2 mm, 1/800 sec, f5.1

And patterns on a creosoted pole. . .

4 October 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 24.4 mm, 1/125 sec, f5.4

4 October 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 24.4 mm, 1/125 sec, f5.4

A shoe defooted. . .

4 October 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 23.1 mm, 1/80 sec, f5.4

4 October 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 23.1 mm, 1/80 sec, f5.4

And a skyline delineated. . .

4 October 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 86.9 mm, 1/100 sec, f5.9

4 October 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 86.9 mm, 1/100 sec, f5.9

Before the Internet, there really were tubes


From the Santa Monica Evening Outlook‘s pneumatic tube system, a leather-capped cylinder used to convey story text, headlines, page layouts, and so much move. The tubes vanished when the paper moved from downtown Santa Monica to an industrial neighborhood. The building demolished in 1979 after it was taken by a friendly eminent domain action to make way for Santa Monica Place, a new indoor mall designed by a trendy young architect, Frank Gehry.

When we moved out, we grabbed one of the tubes, sensing that we were capturing an icon from a vanishing era, the world of linotypes and letterpresses.

This is the only photo we’ve posted that’s been substantially altered by Photoshop, an exception evoked by the subject itself:

26 February 2012, Nikon D300, ISO 320, 60 mm, 1/1600 sec, f3.5

26 February 2012, Nikon D300, ISO 320, 60 mm, 1/1600 sec, f3.5

Sadie Rose meets Grandpa esnl for first time


Another shot of esnl‘s first encounter with Granddaughter Sadie Rose. . .

17 September 2013, Motorola XT907, 1/2 sec, 4.36 mm, f2.4

17 September 2013, Motorola XT907, 1/2 sec, 4.36 mm, f2.4

Ah shucks, another Grandpa and Sadie Rose pic


This time outside, with Granddaughter sitting in Grandpa’s favorite [one of three] Stetson and Mommy holding Grandpa’s camera. . .and Grandpa selecting the image and running it through Photoship the same way he’d once run black-and-white film through a photochemical darkroom. A truly collaborative effort, with Sadie Rose in the starring role:

17 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 800, 4.3 mm, 1/4 sec, f3.3

17 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 800, 4.3 mm, 1/4 sec, f3.3

Playing Grandpa: A visitor from Southern Cal


Finally, at the ripe old age of seven weeks, Sadie Rose decided to visit her Grandpa, what with mom and dad finally being rested up enough to hit the road. SO here we be, following a bite the Herbivore here in Berkeley. . .

17 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 400, 4.3 mm, 1/4 sec, f3.3

17 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 400, 4.3 mm, 1/4 sec, f3.3

South Berkeley seens: Something to crow about


A crow on a wire. . .

17 September 2013, Nikon D300, ISO 320, 400 mm, 1/320 sec, f10

17 September 2013, Nikon D300, ISO 320, 400 mm, 1/320 sec, f10

Hops down to the curb. . .

17 September 2013, Nikon D300, ISO 320, 400 mm, 1/250 sec, f10

17 September 2013, Nikon D300, ISO 320, 400 mm, 1/250 sec, f10

Then up to a nearby branch and good company. . .

17 September 2013, Nikon D300, ISO 320, 400 mm, 1/125 sec, f10

17 September 2013, Nikon D300, ISO 320, 400 mm, 1/125 sec, f10

Then to another tree, all the better to keep an eye on the guy pointing that thing her.

17 September 2013, Nikon D300, ISO 320, 400 mm, 1/125 sec, f10

17 September 2013, Nikon D300, ISO 320, 400 mm, 1/125 sec, f10

Sadie Rose, six weeks old, just groovin’


Makes a grandpa smile. . .

BLOG Sadie Rose 6 wks ed

From the Hubble Telescope: A nebulous neighbor


Nearby Cepheid Variable RS Pup

BLOG APOD

From Astronomy Picture of the Day:

Nearby Cepheid Variable RS Pup
Image Credit: Hubble Legacy Archive, NASA, ESA Processing: Stephen Byrne Explanation: It is one of the most important stars in the sky. This is partly because, by coincidence, it is surrounded by a dazzling reflection nebula. Pulsating RS Puppis, the brightest star in the image center, is some ten times more massive than our Sun and on average 15,000 times more luminous. In fact, RS Pup is a Cepheid typevariable star, a class of stars whose brightness is used to estimate distances to nearby galaxies as one of the first steps in establishing the cosmic distance scale. As RS Pup pulsates over a period of about 40 days, its regular changes in brightness are also seen along the nebula delayed in time, effectively a light echo. Using measurements of the time delay and angular size of the nebula, the known speed of light allows astronomers to geometrically determine the distance to RS Pup to be 6,500 light-years, with a remarkably small error of plus or minus 90 light-years. An impressive achievement for stellar astronomy, the echo-measured distance also more accurately establishes the true brightness of RS Pup, and by extension other Cepheid stars, improving the knowledge of distances to galaxies beyond the Milky Way. The above image was taken by the Hubble Space Telescope and digitally processed by a volunteer.

South Berkeley street scenes: Front porch shots


Drawn to the front door by a shrill mechanical whining, we beheld a crew of trimmers feeding as shredder to make tree puree out of branches whacked off by cherrypicker-bucket-riding chainsaw-wielders working their way along the block.

But what caught our eye more lastingly was a play of light and shadow cast by the radically thinned trees.

First, as the shadows initially caught our eye. . .

9 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 4.3 mm, 1/500 sec, f3.3

9 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 4.3 mm, 1/500 sec, f3.3

Then the cherrypicker moved on and we we able to catch the shadow from first a horizontal perspective. . .

9 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 8.5 mm, 1/400 sec, f4.9

9 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 8.5 mm, 1/400 sec, f4.9

And then a vertical. . .

9 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 12.5 mm, 1/200 sec, f5

9 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 12.5 mm, 1/200 sec, f5

Then, with a click of a button, a black and white image.

9 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 11.7 mm, 1/200 sec, f4.9

9 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 11.7 mm, 1/200 sec, f4.9

Finally, for architectural and technicolor relief, a small detail of a building across the street. . .

4 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 20.6 mm, 1/200 sec, f5.3

4 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 20.6 mm, 1/200 sec, f5.3

Berkeley street scenes: Two blocks on Shattuck


Looking for textures en route to pizza and brew with a friend at Jupiter.

First up, a corner encased in a rubberized sidewalk.

4 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 20.6 mm, 1/200 sec, f5.3

4 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 20.6 mm, 1/200 sec, f5.3

Lines and patterns on concrete street paving.

4 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 16.1 mm, 1/640 sec, f5.2

4 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 16.1 mm, 1/640 sec, f5.2

A grill, intruding on sidewalk.

4 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 11.7 mm, 1/250 sec, f4.9

4 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 11.7 mm, 1/250 sec, f4.9

And the rubberized sidewalk, with vestiges of paint.

4 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 35.6 mm, 1/2000 sec, f5.5

4 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 35.6 mm, 1/2000 sec, f5.5

Shadows on a tiled wall.

4 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 9.7 mm, 1/500 sec, f4.6

4 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 9.7 mm, 1/500 sec, f4.6

And leafy shadows on a concrete sidewalk.

4 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 20.6 mm, 1/200 sec, f5.3

4 September 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 20.6 mm, 1/200 sec, f5.3

Images of the day: A pair of failing protostars


The first one, taken by the venerable Hubble Telescope, is from Astronomy Picture of the Day and depicts the object know to astronomers as IRAS 20324+4057, a failed attempt to create a new star that was derailed by strong interstellar winds:

IRAS 20324+4057

IRAS 20324+4057

Our second failing star is French President François Hollande, snapped for his annual back-to-school “press availability.” As The Independent notes, “Agence France Presse (AFP), the French press agency, has been forced to deny charges of self-censorship after attempting to withdraw” the image. Rather than political pressure, AFP says, it was their own policy of “not to transmit images that gratuitously ridicule people.”

François “What? Me Worry?” Hollande

François “What? Me Worry?” Hollande

South Berkeley street scenes: Going postal II


Some final images from our morning stroll to the post office. . .

Slap tags, adorning the backs of parking signs

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 31.3 mm, 1/250 sec, f5.4

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 31.3 mm, 1/250 sec, f5.4

More slap tags, adorning the backs of another parking sign

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 25.9 mm, 1/250 sec, f5.4

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 25.9 mm, 1/250 sec, f5.4

Still more slap tags, adorning the backs of still another parking sign

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 12.5 mm, 1/250 sec, f5.4

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 12.5 mm, 1/250 sec, f5.4

Unlike those marvelous chimneys of Venice, but a chimney nonetheless

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 30.6 mm, 1/640 sec, f5.3

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 30.6 mm, 1/640 sec, f5.3

And another chimney. . .

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 6.9 mm, 1/500 sec, f3.9

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 6.9 mm, 1/500 sec, f3.9

And yet another chimney. . .

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 14.2 mm, 1/1300 sec, f5.1

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 14.2 mm, 1/1300 sec, f5.1

And for our final image, a vanishing pedestrian [right]

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 11.7 mm, 1/200 sec, f4.9

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 11.7 mm, 1/200 sec, f4.9

South Berkeley street scenes: Going postal


Images capture don the way to and from mailing bills this morning.

A freshly painted sidewalk, somehow Jaggeresque

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 4.3 mm, 1/800 sec, f3.3

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 4.3 mm, 1/800 sec, f3.3

Wall tags

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 4.3 mm, 1/2000 sec, f3.3

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 4.3 mm, 1/2000 sec, f3.3

Crossing stripes

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 10.3 mm, 1/2000 sec, f4.7

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 10.3 mm, 1/2000 sec, f4.7

Mondrian streetscape?

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 4.3 mm, 1/1600 sec, f3.3

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 4.3 mm, 1/1600 sec, f3.3

Two tags, one of them legal

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 125, 10.3 mm, 1/2000 sec, f4.7

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 125, 10.3 mm, 1/2000 sec, f4.7

Well-tagged newsracks

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 13.3 mm, 1/800 sec, f5

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 13.3 mm, 1/800 sec, f5

And high above it all, a mocking bird

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 62.5 mm, 1/500 sec, f5.9

31 August 2013, Panasonic DMZ-ZS19, ISO 100, 62.5 mm, 1/500 sec, f5.9

Heavens above: Bright Planetary Nebula NGC 7027


Yet another astounding image from the Hubble Telescope via Astronomy Picture of the Day:

BLOG Nebula

From APOD:

Explanation: It is one of the brightest planetary nebulae on the sky — what should it be named? First discovered in 1878, nebula NGC 7027 can be seen toward the constellation of the Swan (Cygnus) with a standard backyard telescope. Partly because it appears there as only an indistinct spot, it is rarely referred to with a moniker. When imaged with the Earth-orbiting Hubble Space Telescope, however, great details are revealed. Studying Hubble images of NGC 7027 have led to the understanding that it is a planetary nebula that began expanding about 600 years ago, and that the cloud of gas and dust is unusually massive as it appears to contain about three times the mass of our Sun. Pictured above in assigned colors, the resolved, layered, and dust-laced features of NGC 7027 might remind sky enthusiasts of a familiar icon that could be the basis for an informal name. Please feel free to make suggestions — some suggestions are being recorded, for example, in an online APOD discussion forum.

Scene from above: Clouds, shrouds, twilight


From the online camera at UC Berkeley’s Lawrence Hall of Science, a truly spectacular sunset, with the overcast sky enshrouding the Berkeley Hills while not blocking the very low sunset sunshine from illuminating San Francisco across the Bay:

BLOG Hilltop

Granddaughter alert: Sadie Rose disapproves


Something displeases her. Mommy’s driving, perchance?

14 August 2013, Motorola XT907, 1/2 sec, 4.36 mm, f2.4

14 August 2013, Motorola XT907, 1/2 sec, 4.36 mm, f2.4

A Berkeley bonus: Smile when you pay that


Laura the ex, younger daughter Sammi, and esnl enjoyed a pleasant a meal at Berkeley’s Herbivore restaurant, a vegan eatery that’s found a way to prepare healthy food that’s also tasty.

During the course of the meal, Sammi mentioned to the waitress that we were all celebrating our birthday’s [June for Sammi, July for esnl, and August for Laura].

When the check came, this was on the back. . .

22 August 2013, iPhone 4S, ISO 640, 4.28 mm, 1/15 sec, f2.4

22 August 2013, iPhone 4S, ISO 640, 4.28 mm, 1/15 sec, f2.4

A Baby’s Tale, starring Sadie Rose


More photos of  the granddaughter arrived by email, and they seemed to tell a story. . .

Whoa, dude, what have I gotten into? SOmething doesn’t feel right!

8 August 2013, Motorola XT907, ? sec, 4.36 mm, f2.4

8 August 2013, Motorola XT907, ? sec, 4.36 mm, f2.4

and what’s with these giants? that’s just strange.

8 August 2013, Motorola XT907, ? sec, 4.36 mm, f2.4

8 August 2013, Motorola XT907, ? sec, 4.36 mm, f2.4

You say it’s gonna be all right? You can fix it?

8 August 2013, Motorola XT907, ? sec, 4.36 mm, f2.4

Uhhhh. that was wet and sticky and. . .ohhhhh bunnies!

8 August 2013, Motorola XT907, ? sec, 4.36 mm, f2.4

8 August 2013, Motorola XT907, ? sec, 4.36 mm, f2.4

Ahhhhhhhhhhh. . . . . .zzzzzzzzzz

8 August 2013, Motorola XT907, ? sec, 4.36 mm, f2.4

8 August 2013, Motorola XT907, ? sec, 4.36 mm, f2.4

And for a change of pace, a gift from the Hubble


BLOG GalaxyVia Astronomy Picture of the Day.

The caption:

NGC 3370: A Sharper View
Image Credit: NASA, ESA, Hubble Heritage (STScI/AURA); Acknowledgement: A. Reiss et al. (JHU) Explanation: Similar in size and grand design to our own Milky Way, spiral galaxy NGC 3370 lies about 100 million light-years away toward the constellation Leo. Recorded here in exquisite detail by the Hubble Space Telescope’s Advanced Camera for Surveys, the big, beautiful face-on spiral does steal the show, but the sharp image also reveals an impressive array of background galaxies in the field, strewn across the more distant Universe. Looking within NGC 3370, the image data has proved sharp enough to study individual pulsating stars known as Cepheids that can be used to accurately determine this galaxy’s distance. NGC 3370 was chosen for this study because in 1994 the spiral galaxy was also home to a well studied stellar explosion — a type Ia supernova. Combining the known distance to this standard candle supernova, based on the Cepheid measurements, with observations of supernovae at even greater distances, can reveal the size and expansion rate of the Universe itself.

Sadie Rose, granddaughter at one week old!


A photo taken by Grandma in today Los Angeles. . .

5 August 2012, Motorola XT907, 1/60 sec, 4.36 mm, f2.4

5 August 2012, Motorola XT907, 1/60 sec, 4.36 mm, f2.4