Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 55mm — 1/125 sec, f/2.8, ISO 3600 — map & image data — nearby photos
ZipCity, Streetsboro OH, USA
We made a visit to ZipCity trampoline and zipline park in Streetsboro Ohio the other day. We did some zip-lining, but mostly jumped on the trampolines.
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 32mm — 1/50 sec, f/4.5, ISO 6400 — map & image data — nearby photos
dodging a throw
Photo by Phyllis Friedl
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 62mm — 1/125 sec, f/4.5, ISO 5000 — map & image data — nearby photos
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 48mm — 1/100 sec, f/2.8, ISO 1800 — map & image data — nearby photos
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/50 sec, f/2.8, ISO 1100 — map & image data — nearby photos
We had the place mostly to ourselves at first, but it eventually got crowded enough that they organized dodgeball games....
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 35mm — 1/80 sec, f/4, ISO 2200 — map & image data — nearby photos
We were both dog tired after 2½ hours of nonstop play, and I came down with a cold later that evening. Two days later I'm feeling better, so we'll probably go again tomorrow (with three of Anthony's cousins, who came in last night).
I'm in Ohio to visit my folks for a couple of week, having flown out of Osaka on Friday afternoon, via Tokyo and Chicago to arrive in Akron, Ohio on Friday evening. Unlike many previous trips where I had some form of harrowing experience (such as this, this, or this), this trip went perfectly smoothly.... until we arrived.
The 12-hour Tokyo-to-Chicago flight seemed to go quickly thanks to copious amounts of Ambien, and arriving half an hour early helped make immigration/customs and making the connecting flight much better. We arrived in Akron on time and my Dad was waiting, and as we're strolling to baggage claim I'm already writing this “everything went well for a change!” blog post in my mind.
Then Anthony mentions “I hope they don't lose our luggage again”, and this reminds me suddenly that our luggage is lost about half the time we fly into Akron. Don't say such things Anthony... you'll jinx us! When one of our two bags showed up, I thought we were fine, but you can see where this is going... )-:
At least United knows where the second bag is.... it was in Chicago when he checked. Among the small crowd of folks on the same flight without their bag was a guy who had flown in from Nova Scotia who was told, by a voice as perplexed about what he was reading on the screen as the customer was in hearing it, “it seems your bag was sent back to Nova Scotia”.
Otherwise we're fine... Anthony and I already knocked a soccer ball around outside, had some Manwiches for dinner, and have freshened up with a shower.
Hopefully the bag shows up tomorrow.
UPDATE: it was delivered at 3:27am.
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24mm f/1.4 — 1/160 sec, f/2.5, ISO 100 — map & image data — nearby photos
Zuishin Temple (随心院)
One of the famous spots in Kyoto for plum blossoms is the Zuishin Temple (随心院) in Yamashina ward, and its blossoms appeared on my blog eight years(!) ago in “Plum Blossoms and Photographers”. The style of both my blog presentation and photography has changed quite a bit in the intervening years.
Anyway, I made a visit this past March during plum-blossom season, but having already enjoyed the plum at the Kitano Tenmangu Shrine and at the Kyoto Imperial Palace Park, I decided this time to actually venture inside the temple building for the first time. I was joined by Damien Douxchamps.
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24mm f/1.4 — 1/100 sec, f/2.2, ISO 2500 — map & image data — nearby photos
I'm a sucker for the woodwork
The theme for my view of this temple seems to be “wood”, and the two wooden litter (palanquin) hanging from the ceiling in this hallway we came to right away were no exception.
A two-person palanquin is probably not meant to transport the likes of sumo wrestlers or tall foreign photographers, I'm guessing.
It was quite dark in the hallway, lit as it was by a single bulb at each end, but I still tried to capture the delicate painting on the door...
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/500 sec, f/2.5, ISO 1400 — map & image data — nearby photos
in the wood caught my eye over and over at this place
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/500 sec, f/2.5, ISO 2000 — map & image data — nearby photos
it's goovy, man
I prepared these photos for a blog post long ago, and for some reason prepared this B&W version of a similar scene to the previous photo. Maybe I did it for the “wood patterns” feeling, but now I'm not sure whether I should post it or just delete it. I guess I'll post it:
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24mm f/1.4 — 1/100 sec, f/2.5, ISO 720 — map & image data — nearby photos
The lead photo for this post was taken from about the same place as the photo above, but looking more toward the right to get the open door to the outside.
Outside is a weather-worn veranda that wraps around much of the building.
From where that photo was taken, looking up, you see a small side garden and doors that enter the building. The nearest door looks mostly black...
... but when you get close, it offers a lot of colorful detail:
Getting up close and personal with the sun-drenched bottom of one of the planks, with my favorite macro lens, yields more for the “pretty wood patterns” theme:
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/500 sec, f/5.6, ISO 450 — map & image data — nearby photos
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/500 sec, f/5.6, ISO 450 — map & image data — nearby photos
Back over to the main part of the temple building, more wood awaits...
Being mid March, the mossy ground was in pretty un-photogenic shape, so we'll stick with the wood theme and leave moss to other places.
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 85mm f/1.4 — 1/2500 sec, f/1.4, ISO 100 — map & image data — nearby photos
A shot like the one above conflicts me... should I set the white balance for the shaded wood, or for the sunlit greenery outside. If I choose the former, the wood looks rich and full as it does in real life, but the outside becomes bland and washed out. If I adjust for the outside so that it looks natural, the wood takes on an odd color.
Above, I choose to set it for the shade.
Above, he's likely taking this shot.
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24mm f/1.4 — 1/100 sec, f/1.4, ISO 160 — map & image data — nearby photos
opening up and out, hanging on hooks
Nikon D3X @ 116mm — 1/125 sec, f/2.8, ISO 400 — map & image data — nearby photos
of squished-nose fame
photo by Damien Douxchamps
More wood and patterns await the followup post. To be continued...
Poking around on Amazon.com, I got sidetracked browsing some truly horrid-looking watches, and came across the most meaningless marketing fluff I've ever seen, for any product, anywhere.
The “product description” has four beefy sentences barely able to contain all 576 words, yet not weighted down by even the slightest actual fact or hint of useful information:
A vision quest indeed. Not knowing ahead of time what this was “describing”, I think many would be hard pressed to realize it's supposed to be about a watch. “Swiss movements” is perhaps a good hint, but it could just as easily get lost in the context of their testosterone-driven direct-to-cable military theme.
If you did realize it's about a watch, you'd be forgiven if you thought “Swiss movements” was a relevant fact that had somehow slipped in, but no, it's a quartz (battery/electronic) watch.
I guess this all follows the old saying: “If you can't say something nice, make up a bunch of irrelevant, meaningless crap.” Or something like that. It's so much worse than the Nikon D4 Marketing Fluff I wrote about a couple of years ago.
Anyway, I have such “compensation issues” that I would have bought one just to associate myself with its virile product description, but alas, it's not eligible for Amazon Prime, and I don't buy things that aren't eligible for Amazon Prime.
(In seriousness, who on earth writes this kind of crap, and more importantly, who on earth is actually swayed by it?)
I still don't know what the “(No Straps)” in the product title refers to. Maybe it's a typo for “(No Facts)”?
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 50mm f/1.4 — 1/100 sec, f/3.2, ISO 250 — map & image data — nearby photos
Kyoto Station (京都駅), Kyoto Japan
I've been a fan of Alice Gordenker's monthly “So What The Heck Is That?” column in the Japan Times for years. I first mentioned her writing on my blog more than seven years go when referring to an article she wrote about Gold Poop. (Yes, Gold Poop. Go ahead and read about gold poop, I'll wait.)
Somewhere along the lines we became acquainted via email, and a couple of years ago I ended up doing some photography for her article about Japanese candles. Finally last month I actually met her for a few hours for a photoshoot.
The photo of her on her blog had been a grainy one from a video frame capture, so while passing through Kyoto on a project, she finally took me up on my offer to take a better photo.
We met at Kyoto Station and we got along great... to use what I think is a uniquely American phrase, she's a real kick in the head.
She'd brought along a parasol that had been in her old blog photo, so we gave it a try for some shots right there at Kyoto Station...
In trying to figure out a nice place to go for the bulk of the shoot, I found that she'd never been to the Fushimi Inari shrine (which I first wrote about six years ago in the appropriately-titled “Kyoto's Dazzling Fushimi Inari Shrine”), so we decided to go there. It's a photogenic place, so I've done photo shoots there before... here and here.
For her blog masthead she needed a very wide short crop, so that's the composition we tried for first, and came up with this:
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 85mm f/1.4 — 1/640 sec, f/1.4, ISO 100 — map & image data — nearby photos
at the Fushimi-Inari Taisha Shrine (伏見稲荷大社)
It's now gracing the top of her blog.
She's got TV experience, so she's a pro at posing. She even brought a couple of shirts to mix and match looks.
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 50mm f/1.4 — 1/100 sec, f/7.1, ISO 2000 — map & image data — nearby photos
the foreground is way too dark compared to the bright background
( I could recover this much with some aggressive Lightroom adjustments )
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 85mm f/1.4 — 1/200 sec, f/2.5, ISO 4000 — map & image data — nearby photos
but we're there, so may as well try the shot
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 85mm f/1.4 — 1/200 sec, f/3.5, ISO 5000 — map & image data — nearby photos
should she ever write a book
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 50mm f/1.4 — 1/100 sec, f/2.2, ISO 360 — map & image data — nearby photos
( like I said, we where there, so may as well try it )
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 50mm f/1.4 — 1/100 sec, f/1.4, ISO 3200 — map & image data — nearby photos
for the background to clear
It was really too dark to do this kind of shot... by this time it had gotten very darkly overcast and we could hear thunder off in the distance. It turns out that just north of us the main center of Kyoto was getting inundated by a sudden torrential downpour of biblical proportions that claimed books and electronics from friends who got caught in it, but half a mile south we got off with nary a drop.
Back near the entrance we tried some more in the same area where we started...
And that was that. It was a fun time, and a pleasure to finally meet her.
On the way home I noticed that the pillars at the train station were painted as if they were shrine-gate legs...
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 85mm f/1.4 — 1/200 sec, f/1.4, ISO 320 — map & image data — nearby photos
Keihan Fushimi Inari Station (京阪伏見稲荷駅)
If I'd noticed it before, I'd forgotten. (I've posted a shot from the same perspective before, but in B&W). The benefit of being forgetful, I guess, is that you get to rediscover little things like this.