Whatever Weds. This and That

Copyright ©2020 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL Rights Reserved

How are you all doing? I’ve been out making pictures, seeing nature, my Baby Girl, grandboys, and our Big Baby Boy came up to visit. We hadn’t seen him in person since January 4th when we parted ways at the Reno airport for our transfers from our return trip from London. It was grand seeing him. We all missed him very much.

I’ve been making lots and lots of pictures, but I’m in a slump processing them. I’m not very motivated to do it lately which is why I’m posting less, painting more.

Here are two I have processed from recent photography outings, and some of you who follow me on Instagram know I’ve been taking two architecture sketching in ink and watercolor courses online. Well, I’ll show you the final project from one of those courses too.  Here we go!

July 4th’s almost Full Moonrise from my patio- rising over the Pinenut Mountains

July 4th's Moon 99.5%

Monday (this week) a girlfriend and I went out to the wilderness in separate cars to see the Wild Mustangs and there are lots and lots of new foals, fillies, and ponies!  Here is one of the cuties I saw.

I never did determine if it was male or female, but here it was resting under the protection of its mother’s chest and head whom you don’t see. It’s so cute!

Wild Mustang Foal

What’s blooming in my yard?  Not a whole lot, but there are Day Lilys! I don’t have any idea about its name. John Hric  do you? They were planted and doing well when we bought the house so left them. I love them.

Yellow Orange Day Lily

…and my Final Project of one of the watercolor courses. This took me all day and 3 times totally erasing it all and starting over. Drawing is so hard for me! I did learn more about how to “see” and draw perspective though. I hope one day it really clicks and I can actually draw without having to start over so many times. Like sewing, I think it requires an engineering brain. That’s not me. At. All!

We had a choice to paint the same building the instructor painted or choose a building from your own town.  I chose a building from one of my images from the capital of my new home state of Nevada. This is the St. Charles Hotel and Fox Brewery Pub in downtown Carson City, not my town, but it’s not too far away. It’s a Historic Landmark which some of you who have been following me a while might remember when I posted about it here in August 2019 for Thursday Doors.  My lampposts and buildings are wonky. I can’t draw a straight line to save my life.  I really wish all the teachers and instructors wouldn’t take away my ruler! St Charles Hotel and Fox Brew Pub Watercolor

…and here’s my image of the St Charles Hotel/Fox Brew Pub from 2019.

You can see I took artistic license and simplified the scene.

 

Historic Mt Charles Hotel and The Fox BrewPub

Current news: Three fires started simultaneously Monday evening just about 25 miles south of us just outside Gardnerville, NV so, we’re keeping a close eye on those.  We’re hoping they all stay out in the uninhabited BLM land. At the time of this writing, it’s now spread to 10,000 acres, destroyed one house, and 10 outbuildings and has 0 containment. Winds are still pretty good from the west which isn’t good.  We’ve been under a Red Flag high wind advisory conditions since Monday afternoon.  The firefighters have been concentrating on saving the 350+ homes out there.  I could see the flames from my patio Monday evening and from along Hwy 395 tonight.  It’s awful. My neighbor who is a retired firefighter says 3 fires don’t start at the same time naturally and suspects it’s arson. They’ve named it the #numbersfire. Right now they’re so busy trying to knock them down that they’re saying the cause is unknown. We had a wildfire in this same area the week before last that burned up a whole lot a of acres! Our thoughts are with those who have been evacuated, and those who are out in the thick of it fighting the fires.

We had dinner tonight with #1 Grandson’s other Grandparents at their house who also live in this town. OH MY GOSH! It was so great to see them and catch up in person! It’s been months and months since we’ve seen them. We figured we’re all still healthy, and we’re all keeping our circle of who we actually get close too really tight so let’s do it. It was so good to be normal! We’re going to see them again only we’re hosting next time. 😀

So, that just about catches you up with me. What’s been happening with you?

Fuji X-T3 & Nikon D810| PS CC 21.2| DaVinci Watercolor paint in the Scratchmadejournal curated palette| Canson 140lb cold press watercolor paper|DaVinci Artissmo and Pentel water brushes

more to come…

 

 

Whatever Weds. Conjunctions

Copyright ©2020 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

I’ve still got my head in the clouds or tilted upward toward the sky.  This week there is a 3 planet and Moon conjunction going on in the wee hours before dawn and I’ve been up to see it two of the three mornings it’s visible.

Jupiter, Saturn, and Mars are all lined up beside or above the Moon.

Here’s how it appeared in my frame on April 14th, 2020.  All three planets were rising behind the Last Quarter Moon.  I caught a shooting star and a couple of satellites in my image too.   They did look a bit bigger with my eyes but look smaller when photographed.

Moon Jupiter Saturn Mars Shooting Star

Here’s how it looked this morning with all three planets rising above the Waning Crescent Moon (44%).  Jupiter is the brightest planet above and to the right of Saturn which is above the Moon, and Mars is following behind.  It looks like I caught a satellite just left and lower than the Moon again this morning.

Jupiter Saturn Mars and the Moon Apr 15 2020

It’s supposed to start raining tomorrow and cloud up, but if by chance it’s clear tomorrow morning I’ll be up to photograph it.  Tomorrow is the last day to observe them when they’re lined up so nicely then Mars will begin marching further eastward and be pulling further away from the other planets.

 

If you’re up an hour before sunrise on the 16th look southwest or look for the rising moon you can see the conjunction with your eyes no special gear required. Mars will be above and slightly right of the Moon with Saturn and Jupiter above Mars.

By the time first light appears in the morning sky before 6AM for me- dim Saturn and Mars are lost in the light and only Jupiter still burns bright above the moon.

I hope you’re all having a good week, and your spirits are up and you’re busy and well!

Nikon D810| Nikkor 35mm| Lexar Digital Film| PS CC 21.1.1

more to come…

UPDATE!  April 16, 2020 -It was clear this morning and the moon’s light shining in my bedroom window woke me up so I got up and photographed this line up too.  As you see Mars is moving further away from the other two planets. I won’t be getting up and photographing this one again this month. There are other things I have planned this month though. 😀

Waning Crescent Moon Mars Saturn Jupiter

Nikon D810| Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G| PS CC 21.1.1

more to come…

 

 

 

 

Whatever Weds. February’s Rural Full Moon

Copyright ©2019 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

I’ve been going over to Baby Girl’s almost weekly since our Littlest was born, but whilst she was in the hospital on bedrest I spotted this little cabin and outbuilding one afternoon on my way home from the hospital and it has been on my radar since.

Knowing the full moon was upon us I did a quick search of my sun and moon tools to see if the moon would line up with the cabin because I was going to be at Baby Girls on Monday.  Luck was with me it did line up! So, I got there early and set up to wait.

February's Rural Full Moon

I didn’t wait for the Moon to get directly over the cabin because the shadows were getting longer and broader with each passing minute. By the time the Moon would have been right over or right of the cabin the shadows would have killed the golden light on the cabin.  I learned that whilst waiting for the Moon to rise. I will keep that in mind when planning another shoot here.

See the nut trees in bloom behind the cabin? All the orchards are in bloom right now over here. It seems too early to me though. I hope a frost doesn’t come along and kill the buds.

OT- Some weeks back whilst I was staying at Baby Girl’s full time I passed my 9th year blogging/sharing my photos here on WordPress. 9 years! It doesn’t seem like it’s been that long at all.  Thank you all so much for your likes, comments, and conversations throughout the years. I think of you as friends and appreciate your visits very much.

I hope you’re having a lovely week!

Nikon D810| Nikkor 80-200mm f/2.8D| Hoodman STEEL Digital Film| PS CC 2019

more to come…

Wild Wednesday 31/52 The Moon, and Mars

Copyright ©2018 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

The 27th was the Full Buck Moon, or Blood Moon because there was a Total Lunar Eclipse that night, unfortunately, not seen here in North America.  I just went out to my backyard to photograph it.  It wasn’t red by the time it rose over the mountains and I was able to see it from my yard, but it had a lovely warm glow.

Full Buck Moon

The 28th, Saturday, several friends and I met in Santa Cruz, CA to photograph the Moon and Mars from a favorite “go to” spot; Walton’s Lighthouse.

I was watching the fog/cloud weather report all day, and it looked good until 5pm just when we were meeting. We met at Marianne’s Ice Cream parlor. Another “go to”, “must stop” , “it’s tradition” places while in Santa Cruz. They have 105 different ice creams to choose from. It’s not easy picking just one! I had a Jr. cup of Banana, Almond ice cream. It was good, but I wish it had more banana in it. No pictures I’m afraid. I always forget to do that!   Despite the low fog we continued on and photographed sunset-it was one of those soft pink evenings. This is looking/facing ESE more or less.

Belt of Venus Surrounds the Walton Lighthouse

We didn’t think there would be much hope of seeing the Moon rising just above the lighthouse because of the thick band of fog behind the lighthouse so we moved to higher ground and hoped for some breaks in the fog/low cloud band.

In the image below: Mars (right of and higher than lighthouse) rose higher than fog band first, and I think that other tiny bright object to the right of it near the edge of the image is part of the constellation Sagittarius. Or Spica? I’m not sure.

I love that Bonfires, well, not huge ones are still allowed at this beach. A lifeguard came out to make a group put out a large one in the black spot in the lower right of my image. I’m sure they were not happy about that.

Mars Shines Red over Santa Cruz CA

We  walked north and set up on higher ground; a cliff overlooking the beach and while we were shooting Mars a teenage boy asked me what we were photographing, and as I was explaining about Mars, and hoping the Moon would rise above the fog I looked back toward the lighthouse and saw the Moon, it was above the lighthouse as we planned it to be, and it was RED! Then I excitedly pointed that out to him, and my companions.  The boy said, ” Coool!” So, did I! 😊 This is my favorite of the images I made of the scene.

Waxing Gibbous Moon and Mars over Walton Lighthouse

I have no idea who the person with the spot/flash light in line with the lighthouse below on the beach is, but their alignment is nearly perfect right?  That’s Mars to the right, higher than the Moon. Not so red in this image though…the Moon was stealing that color.

Anyway, we all were thrilled after thinking we’d not see the Moon above the lighthouse at all.

When we all had our fill of the Moon, Mars, the Lighthouse, and beach we went to a diner for a quick, late dinner then headed home. Traffic hit a snag near Los Gatos and we crawled for miles. There was no wreck or construction Thank God! Just going home from the beach, Summertime, Silicon Valley traffic all reaching the bottom of the Santa Cruz mountains at the same time.  I got home just about Midnight tired, but very happy with the photography and spending time with good friends.  Though some were missed! You know who you are. 😉

He-Man had the light on for me, and was waiting up for me sorta, kinda snoozing on the sofa in the family room.   I know he’s a Keeper!  He went to bed, and I got my images uploading then got myself ready for bed, and lastly I checked to make sure all my images uploaded sans problemes then Diva Dog and I joined He-Man for good night’s rest.

I coulda slept til noon I’m sure Sunday morning, but Diva Dog, and Box the Guinea Pig were not having it.  There’s a down side to being an early riser normally when you have pets. They’re never. sleeping. in! Evah! LOL! Since we were up He-Man and I had really nice bike ride around the neighborhood together. That has only happened a few times in our 39 years together! He’s the cyclist. I’m the sluggish hiker, and his cheerleader.  We may do this again. It was pretty nice.

We’re halfway to the week-end! I hope you all are having a good week.  I have nothing. NOTHING planned to photograph this week-end.   I’m going to think of something. What do you have fun/good planned? Anything?

Nikon D810| Nikkor 24-120mm f4, and Nikkor 200-500mm| Hoodman Digital Film| PS CC 2018

more to come…

 

 

 

 

Thunder Moon or Full Buck Moon

Copyright ©2017 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

I stayed close to home this past week-end after having been gone for two week-ends in row. It was nice hanging out with He-Man at home.  Saturday we got in a morning hike, but left later than we should have. By 9am it was already 82°.  We selected a trail that would lead us up to the Redwoods, and Oaks and shade.

We spent the rest of the afternoon indoors with air conditioning.

Saturday evening a good friend and I headed over the hill to Santa Cruz to our traditional Full Moon over the Walton Lighthouse shot.  If you’ve been following me awhile you’ll have seen this lighthouse on my blog before featuring the Moon. I shot the July Moon over this lighthouse last year. Click here.

The weather over the hill was the complete opposite of home. It was still in the 80’s when we left San Jose, but it was in mid 60’s with a breeze on the coast.  I couldn’t get into my hoodie, and wind-breaker fast enough.  I even broke out my gloves!

I set up my rig where I had plotted the Moon to line up over the Lighthouse, but was prepared to move quickly if I needed to adjust my position.  Here’s where we first spotted the Moon rising.  It was faint due to the low marine layer in the air.

Walton Lighthouse and Thunder Moon

We relocated down to the shore and soon the Moon lined up over the Lighthouse.

Copyright © Deborah M. Zajac
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

This is a two frame blended composited image.  The base image had a clear view of the water, and good Moon/lighthouse alignment, but the light wasn’t shining in the Lighthouse so, I blended in the shot right after this one which had the light on. Why not just use that shot you might be asking? Three people walked into the frame obscuring the water.  So, I took the best of both frames blending them together to make the image I wanted to make.

Friday night I went out to the backyard to photograph the Waxing 98.8% Moon.  This is slightly cropped.

July Buck Moon Waxing 98.8%

The July Moon is called Thunder Moon

“Named due to the prevalence of summer thunder storms. It’s sometimes referred to as the Full Buck Moon because at this time of the year, a buck’s antlers are fully grown.”~ https://uk.news.yahoo.com/complete-list-every-full-moon-141136773.html

Since I rarely hear the Thunder but, do see Bucks I think of it more as the Full Buck Moon.

Sunday was a pretty lazy day. I won’t lie. I. Was. A. Slug. 🙂 It was too hot to do much outside although it was cooler by a few degrees.

I hope you had a lovely week-end, and you have a wonderful week!

Nikon Df| Nikkor 200-500mm| SanDisk Digital Film| PS CC 2017

more to come…

 

 

September’s Harvest Moon

Copyright ©2016 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

A friend and I went over the hill to Santa Cruz, CA this month to photograph the Moon rising above Walton Lighthouse.   We both really like having water in the image, and pretty foregrounds.

We knew there wouldn’t be much time to shoot since the Moon would need time to climb to get above the Lighthouse, and it’s getting dark earlier.

When we got out of the car and looked at the horizon and lighthouse we groaned. There was a thick band of fog just sitting on the horizon.  We wouldn’t see the Moon until it got above that! Time wouldn’t be on our side.

The sun had set and the sky was getting darker…finally I saw the top of the Moon above the fog bank.

Harvest Moon 2016

The Moon got high enough for me to make it out almost completely.

2016 Harvest Moon

It finally got out of the Fog only to be obscured again.  I tried to get a few more images, but it was getting too dark to keep the foreground in the image, and I wanted that.  I was also a bit frustrated with the wind, and shaking from the passing cars which shook my rig, and the pier I was photographing from. I deleted quite a few blurry images.

The color of the Moon was gorgeous though, and it was big being so close to the horizon. It would have looked much larger when it was just above that tree line if I could have seen it then.  Maybe next month. 🙂

“The September Moon is called the Harvest Moon or Corn Moon because this is the time to finish harvesting the corn and other crops before Winter. The bright moonlight gives farmers a little extra time to harvest their crops before the first day of Fall. “~sfgate.com

Nikon Df| Nikkor 200-500mm| Delkin Digital Film| PS CC 2015.5

More to come…

July’s Buck Moon

Copyright ©2016 Deborah M. Zajac  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

The July Full Moon is called the “Buck Moon” in North America because male Deer are usually beginning to grow their antlers again in July.
The July Full Moon also has two other names. The Hay Moon; July is when Farmers begin storing their Hay, and the Thunder Moon because of the many thunder storms in the month of July.

I made this image in Santa Cruz, CA. The Moon looks large because it’s close to the horizon. Being on the coast there was a lot of moisture/atmosphere in the air, and the fog was slowly rolling in from the southeast so, the Moon looks a bit diffused.

The Moon was so pretty in the pink reflected light of the Belt of Venus. The pink part of the sky after sunset is called the Belt of Venus. It’s a phenomenon that happens after sunset and before sunrise. “The dark band of the Earth’s shadow at dusk and dawn often has a light pink arch above it, known as the Belt of Venus. It extends about 10-20 degrees up from the horizon, acting as a boundary between the shadow and the sky. The effect is due to the reddened sunlight being backscattered in the atmosphere, which produces the rosy glow.”~http://www.howitworksdaily.com/what-is-the-belt-of-venus/

Full Buck Moon

as the Moon rose higher it began to turn more Golden.

Full Buck Moon Twilight

Then it was time to head home.

Nikon Df| Nikkor 200-500mm| Delkin Digital Film| Tripod

More to come…