Christmas day. Late afternoon sunshine.
Actually, this is really Katie but it's not my house. This place is in the neighborhood, though. We were taking a walk in the afternoon sunshine. After I had washed Elvira, of course. You have to get your priorities straight. You knew a motorcycle would be involved, even on Christmas Day.
As we walked by the house I was thinking how it would be a perfect subject for a black and white photographic rendition. This place is so stately. It stands out from all the other houses. Each year at Christmas there is a lighted tree in each of the four front windows.
Now that the G11 is in the family it gets taken along on most outings. As was true this day. The small sized Canon has enough sophistication to stand on its own. The greatest value to me is the fact that it's so easy to slip into a pocket. It's great for me, but I suspect not so much for Katie. She ends up standing around while I play with camera settings and such. God bless her, she's as patient as you'd expect from a best friend. Hey, it evens out. I'm a gourmet cook and even do dishes. Art takes more than one form.
Katie says she knows how I am. I get interested in something new and immerse myself in it, striving for excellence. I think she finds it intriguing herself to be along for the ride. She often says that living with me is never boring. That might be a compliment. I'm not really sure.
Anyway, the way the light was hitting the side of the house appealed to me. The house is lighter on the left and gets darker on the right. It's amazing how much the contrast in lighting adds a depth to something. To me there's so much more interest in the contrasts than there would be in having the house lit evenly across. To think, I used to be "one of those" who only knew to have the "sun behind your back" when taking photos! All right, that wasn't very long ago, but I have now been "enlightened". Pun intended.
After taking a photo of the house by itself I persuaded Katie to model for me. Since it didn't appear anyone was home, I had her stand at the end of their sidewalk near the street. Katie was wearing a long coat with this new fuzzy hat she got. It's two toned brown and looks Russian. The combination of her looking like a stately Russian woman and the stately house seemed to go together.
The photo probably isn't as well composed as it could be. However, it's my photo and my expression. It did what I wanted it to. I wanted to get the front doors of the house in the photo since those are a distinguishing feature. The sun was coming in from the left so I wanted Katie looking that way since the sun would light her face. I have her almost too far to the left so that she appears to be looking out of the photo. It's borderline. She looks like she could be looking at something just out of the picture. Like a bike that just zoomed down the street!
For these photos I took them in color and then changed them in Photoshop. There's a setting for converting to black and white from color. I chose to try it differently. I put the color photo into the default project bin and made a duplicate layer. Then I went to the sliders where you can change colors, hues, and saturation. I simply removed the color saturation and left everything else alone. It seems to me that this method allows you to keep the pixel brightness which adds a bit of depth to the black and white rendition. You'd probably have to call it grayscale instead of black and white, I suppose.
Sitting down to supper, I saw something out of the dining room window that made me jump up to grab the Nikon and the tripod. Did I mention Katie's patience?
This is one case where the original is almost better than the grayscale conversion. The orange glow is from the porch light of the house.
I narrowed the aperature and changed the focus area to make the chimney more prominent than the branches in the foreground. It did get rid of the orange porch light glow, though. It's probably more of a Halloween photo than Christmas but fog was what we had.
Oh, by the way, just in case you're wondering where the heck the motorcycles are, I'm putting in a grayscale photo of Elvira on a bridge. This is a motorcycle blog, but I'm taking a fun side trip with the camera thing. Twice the fun!
I really like this one because you can see the ripples in the asphalt reflecting in Elvira's bodywork. Makes her look like she has the fur of some exotic cat.
Don't feel sorry for me but this week is forced vacation time. Our company shuts down and we must take a paid week off. I'm doing a few projects and playing with the camera. Speaking of playing, wait until you see the next post. My great friend Ray gave me a new motorcycle. I took delivery on Christmas Eve Day. Can't wait to share the photos. Here's a hint. It's another FJR.
Miles and smiles,