Skip navigation

Tag Archives: Landscapes

Copyright ©2017 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Nikon is having a sale or instant rebates going on right now. Several of the high end Prosumer Cameras are in this sale. Some are bundled with lenses, and all come with some freebies to sweeten the deal.  Nikon comes out with new cameras every 2-4 yrs.  It normally is 2+ years, but there are sometimes set backs which push out the dates.

I jumped on the sale and picked up a Nikon D810. The tech inside the camera is 3 yrs old so, I’m sure there’s some kinda wonderful new camera coming down the pipe later this year, but for me this camera is a huge jump up in tech. It will replace my 6+ year old D700.  There’s still a lot of life left in the D700, but she has been my wildlife camera since my D300s’ auto focus motor went out.

It wasn’t worth the price to fix the D300s so, the D700 is what I have been using.  It has 12.3 MP and cropping in on little birds has been limited.  Stepping up the D810 with its 36MP I’ll have room to crop heavily and not lose resolution, and for landscapes, macro, and studio work the images will contain all sorts of lovely details that will be wonderful when making big prints.

As you might imagine I’ve been photographing things with the new camera testing it out since it arrived on Tuesday. I’ve been tweaking it; getting the buttons and dials, and features set up the way I like them.  Here’s a look at some of what I’ve been photographing last week.

Thursday night’s sunset at Lake Vasona. Nikon D810 + 50mm f/1.8G

High Pass resize Vasona Dusk

I spent all day shooting with friends on Saturday at San Jose Municipal Rose Garden and other venues.  The garden was awash in color! Nikon D810 + Nikkor 105mm f/2.8D micro

Fill the Frame

3 Garden Arches D810 + Nikkor 105mm f/2.8D micro

3 Arched Trellis'

A Bird of Paradise in the Garden at the Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum.

D810 + Nikkor 105mm f/2.8D micro

Bird of Paradise

…and Mother’s Day Sunset at Lake Vasona using the 35mm f/1.8G lens my children gave me for my Birthday/Mother’s Day.  I’ve have wanted this lens since it came out several years ago. I sold my old 35mm f/2D lens about the time this lens came out with the intention of buying the new lens, but I never did

get one. There was always something else that I needed to have so couldn’t afford it.  I am thrilled and so blessed to have been gifted this lens. D810 + Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G micro

Vasona Lake Sunset Mother's Day

I really love how quiet the shutter is on the camera, and it’s a bit lighter than my D700. The grip is deeper which is nice when holding it, and the buttons are laid out perfectly for my hands.  A couple of buttons have been moved to new places on this camera and I’m getting used to that, but overall I’m really happy with this purchase. I think it’s going to be a pretty great all-around camera which will give my trusty Df a break, and retire my D700.

Nikon D810| Nikkor 105mm f/2.8D, 35mm f/1.8G & 50mm f/1.8G | Hoodman Digital Film| PS CC 2017

More to come…

Copyright ©2017 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

He-Man and I spent a long week-end visiting my son Big Baby Boy and his fiancé the Dark Haired Beauty down in Southern California.  They moved to a new apartment just before Christmas and one town over to San Clemente and we were looking forward to seeing the area, and their apartment.

The area is gorgeous, and their apartment and complex are really nice. They’re happy and we won’t worry about them anymore than normal which is a blessing!

On Saturday afternoon the Dark Haired Beauty and I spent an hour getting our nails done after we had a full, rich breakfast with the guys, and a walk around Dana Point Harbor.

We had a super rich dinner at Morton’s Steakhouse, and hoped to hike on Sunday morning but, we woke up to a rainy day.  There was a break in the rain late Sunday afternoon so we high-tailed it to the Cristianitos Trail which is right in their neighborhood.  From the trail-head to San Clemente Summit is only 1.4 miles. I stopped to take some photos on the way up.

Spring is in bloom there! I was so surprised to see Lupine this early in full bloom along the trail.

Lupine

There were huge bushes of Pride of Madeira with new buds.  I’d love to go back when they’re in full flower in a few weeks, but know that’s highly unlikely.

pride-of-madeira

The southeasternish view.  There are sandbags all over the trail to help keep it from eroding from rain runoff. The clouds were pretty great.

cristianitos-trail_dmz9261

I stopped to catch the sun just before it dipped below the mountains.

the-view-west-from-cristianitos-trail

From here we made the final push up the hill to the summit.  The clouds blocked the sun so there was no color. The image is boring so I won’t share it. We hiked down in near darkness. Fortunately, I brought along my headlamp.

May I present Battle Cat. Big Baby Boy’s and Dark Haired Beauty’s Maine Coon.

Battle Cat

He’s a little over a year old, and still has a few more years  before he’s full grown. I didn’t realize this breed can get so BIG!

It took him a full day to approach me.  I pretty much ignored him hoping that might bring him around. Once he figured I was okay he followed me everywhere, and slept with me for a few hours Sunday night. 🙂  He’s so soft, and cute. I wonder how big he’ll be the next time I see him?

 

I’m terribly behind reading blogs again. I’ll be catching up! Rain is forecast for Sunday. I’m sure to make headway then. 🙂

Nikon Df| Nikkor 28-105mm| Delkin Digital Film| PS CC 2017

More to come…

 

 

 

 

 

Copyright ©2016 Deborah M. Zajac ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

As we approach the end of 2016  I’m looking back on the year’s images; seeing which were the most liked by others, which images I love, which techniques failed,  or succeeded, and falling in love all over again with the places I’ve visited, and the people I met during the last year.

I made thousands of images in 2016 whittling them down to just 10 isn’t easy when I love so many, and divorcing myself from the emotional aspects of making the images and being purely objective is hard!

While going through my images I also took a look at my 2016 Top Ten most viewed images over at my Flickr site. Since those are easier to get to I thought I’d share those images with you again this year.  Most of these you’ve seen before if you’ve been following my blog this year. Voici!

1) Sunset Martin's Beach Half Moon Bay

2)Horsetail Fall 2016

3)Dawn in Manhattan

 

4)

5)Radio City Music Hall

6)Allen's Hummingbird Male

7)Swanson Creek Cascade

8)eyelashes-to-die-for_dmz1066

9)Anna's Hummingbird Female perched on a branch

10)Vermillion Flycatcher

Voila! The Top 10 2016 Most Viewed Images on my Flickr site.

I’ve whittled  down my favorites of the year down to 35. Getting that number down to 10-15 is my next task and I’ll share those images soon!

I hope those that celebrate Christmas had a lovely Holiday, and those celebrating Hanukkah are having a great one so far, and I hope we all have a fantastic week!

More to come…

Copyright 2015-2016 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Last week I shared with you the Top 10 Images that received the most  views over on my flickr site today I’m going to share with you My Personal favorite images from 2015. Most of these I posted on the blog, so you’ll probably recognize them or feel a sense of Deja-vu. 🙂

I selected these images based on emotions, technical merit, or because I met a personal goal. I got my picks  down to 36 then spent a couple of days whittling those down to just 10. It’s so hard! I have an emotional attachment to all of them. 🙂

Without further ado…My Personal Top 10 Images of 2015:

1)Running in Rain Puddles.  He’s just awesome, and brings me so much joy. I love being a Grandma!!

Running in Puddles

2) Milky Way over Mt Shasta- This was an Epic night spent with Dear Friends. I hope we are able to get together to shoot here again this year.Milky Way over Mount Shasta CA, USA

3) Total Lunar Eclipse over the Palace of Fine Arts San Francisco- This was another epic night. There was weeks of planning, chasing the Moon across town from one location to this one, working the camera to get the shots all the while hoping it would all come together in post production.  It’s pretty great when it does. Totality-Lunar Eclipse over The Palace of Fine Arts San Francisc

4) Cooper’s Hawk- I think.  There are a few  images in this selection that I haven’t shared before. More times than I care to admit I find I lack the confidence that a certain image I love will be well received, or what happens to me quite a lot is that I’m not crazy about the images when I first upload them after a shoot so, I let them marinate awhile. When I return to them months or years later I find I like them a whole lot more.

This Hawk in the reeds in Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge is an image I really like, but thought it might be too pedestrian to post back in January 2015 when I photographed it.  I love its face, the clarity of the eye, the natural environment, and the fact that I was able to make the image before it flew away.

Cooper's Hawk

5) Northern Flicker-Male – Another image never shown before today. This bird has been a nemesis of mine for years! They too are flighty.

I’d read reports of him being spotted in a neighborhood not from me in Jan/Feb. 2015, so one day a friend and I went looking for him. We found him deep in the shadows of this tree.  Once I got it uploaded and did some post production work to open up the shadows I was happy with the image, and feel like I can say it’s not my nemesis anymore.  They’re such beautiful birds.

Northern Flicker

6) Salsify macro- This was an image I photographed for my Project 52/2015 using my LensBaby Composer Pro wit the macro adapters. I love my LensBaby System and that creamy background. Salsify

7) Still-life “Why fit in when you were born to stand out.” Dr. Seuss

This one makes the cut because I got the lighting, and composition that I wanted to make right.

P52 29 of 52 "Why fit in when you were born to stand out?" ~Dr.

8) Orange Crowned Warbler.   I haven’t seen this little bird too often and photographing them is so hard; they’re small, and are so fidgety you have to be quick. This particular morning I set up my rig by a seep that was drawing in birds from the area for a drink.  Patience when birding is essential. It paid off this morning. I waited 30 minutes or so for this bird to come to the seep. This is the best image I’ve made of this species.

Orange Crowned Warbler

9) Great Egret-  Another bird image I’ve never before shared.  I love the colors, and how clear its eye is.

Great Egret

10)Sunrise cresting San Francisco Skyline from Kirby Cove. It was worth the mile hike back up for this image. Being there was awesome.

Sunrise over San Francisco CA

These are my favorites from 2015.  Thank you for being so supportive, and letting me share my images with you. I look forward to seeing your images, reading your poems, thoughts, and seeing the places you travel from  my arm-chair this year.

Happy and Healthy 2016 Everyone!

More to come…

 

 

 

 

 

Copyright ©2015 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Throw out the blanket, or find a nice rock in the shade, then relax and let the perfumed breeze fill your senses with the sweet scent of Spring.

Yarrow in the Meadow

I took the above image a couple of weeks ago while hiking in Calero County Park in South San Jose, CA.  I and several other photographers hiked 5.5 miles and spent 6 hours photographing wildflowers.

Here’s another one from that day…

Triteleia Laxa- or it’s common name Ithuriel’s spear. This is the first time I’ve seen this wildflower, and I found it again in Sunol, CA last Saturday!

Wildflower

A friend and I went for an easy hike in  Sunol Regional Wilderness Saturday morning and we found these tiny mushrooms.

Fungi

…and nearby along the creek where it pooled up a bit we found this lovely little bouquet of Spreading Fleabane…

Spreading Fleabane

I used my Lensbaby Composer Pro with Soft Focus Optic at f/4 for all the images, and for the mushrooms, and Triteleia Laxa I also used the 16mm Macro Converter.  For the two landscape images I used the Wide Angle Attachment all mounted to my Nikon Df.

On this last image of the Spreading Fleabane I really like the swirling background and how much it reminds me of the Petzval Lenses.

I hope you find time to enjoy Spring this week!

More to come…

Copyright © 2015 Deborah M. Zajac, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

It was a gorgeous sunny day in Yosemite. In February! The little bit of snow we had up here last week from the 3 day storm has all melted.

Yosemite Falls from Swinging Bridge

The meadows are brown, and dry since there has been very little rain, and next to no snow this year, but

I gotta tell ya…no matter what time of year it is or the conditions, this view never gets old!

Nikon Df| AF-S Nikkor 17-35mm| Hoodman STEEL Ultra High Speed Digital Film| Tripod| BW 6 stop ND filter| 2 images focus stacked and blended in Adobe Photoshop CS6

More to come…

Via Flickr:
Copyright © 2013 Deborah M. Zajac. All Rights Reserved.

This place has been on my bucket list since I first passed through here back in the early 1980’s. We didn’t spend any time in the park on that trip and I’ve regretted it since. This barn has been photographed a million times I’m sure, but I had to have my turn.
This was one of the first places my group visited while in the Grand Tetons. We arrived just at sunrise and already there was quite a crowd of people here.
There wasn’t much color pre-sunrise, but once the sun crested the mountains behind me and lit up the Tetons, and the barn it made getting up early and traveling 45 minutes well worth it. I really hope I get another opportunity to return to this area.

Nikon D700| Nikkor 17-35@ 25mm| f10| 1/30s| ISO 200| Manual Priority| Matrix Metering| Tripod

Grand Tetons National Park, Mormon Row, Travel and tourism, Nikon Photographer

 

%d bloggers like this: