I was up in Maine over the long weekend. Woke up about 5 AM on Saturday and headed out with my camera. Here are a couple of HDR photo's of lighthouses I took.
Portland Head light house
This one is one of the "Two Lights" lighthouses
I made it a point to use my ultra wide lens when I was out. I'm happy with the results.
Photoshop CS5 was released today and I downloaded a trial. Didn't spend much time with it but what I saw I liked. I love the content-aware feature. I took this photo I had of Ashley from our visit to the rail trail a few weeks ago ...
What I didn't like about this photo is the fact that Ashley had a tree growing out of her head. With CS4 I could clone it out with time and patience, but with the content-aware feature of CS5 I was able to achieve this in less than 2 minutes ...
The other new feature I played around with for about 15 minutes or so was HDR toning. So I went back into my archives and dug up this photo from almost two years ago.
Always felt that this photo was only so-so. It really doesn't pop and kind of on the boring side of things. So I put it through a HDR treatment. I was shooting for something more dramatic and more interesting to look at. Here is what I ended up with after about 15 minutes or so...
Not 100% happy with the results I achieved, but I think I like this better than the original. I should probably spend some time and try to remove the pile of branches on the left hand side.
I'm still not sold on the HDR functionality. I've been using Photomatrix Pro for some time now for my HDR photos and I've been pleased with the results I get. All in all I've got to say I like CS5 and I'm looking forward to learning more about it.
For many years while driving south past Worcester I would come across a sign on route 146 for an exit to Purgatory Chasm. It would aways catch my attention and I'd make note to one day stop for a visit.
While heading out the door this morning with Ashley and Kaya for this endeavor, Marc grabbed his sneakers and flashed his puppy eyes look. Who could resist not bringing him along for the adventure.
As you can imagine with a place that has the name chasm in it there are a lot of rocks. It was great for Ashley and her friend as seen below. Not so great for Marc and I and his 10" legs. We did not have the opportunity to see the named formations listed as The Corn Crib, The Coffin, The Pulpit, Lovers' Leap and Fat Man's Misery. Might be a good thing, look at the last title.
I let Ashley and her friend go off on their own for a little bit. They were able to explore a few caves while somewhat staying in my sights. Pictured here is the entrance to the chasm.
Marc and I wandered around the entrance where the terrain was a little more stable. It was here that I saw this stone hut that became my favorite photo of the day. I converted it to a HDR image and added a little drama to it. This is a style of photography that is not for everyone, but I'm starting to like this style more and more.
All in all not the visit I was hoping for, but everybody had fun. This stone hut may even make it on my calendar at the end of the year.
It's been awhile since I've posted. During the winter I tend to get unmotivated with my photography. With no leaves things tend to be on the bland side. Don't get me wrong, there is plenty of photo opportunities in the winter if you want to chase them. For me, I just can't seem to get motivated. Hopefully my hiatus is done now.
Took advantage of the nice weather this weekend and headed out. With the warm weather we've had lately, blooming is about a month early. Here are some dogwood trees at Doyle Field.
I then made my way through Lunenburg and found myself near Flat Hill Orchards
The apple trees looked amazing as seen below
I've read that there is some concern that because everything is blooming early, there is a chance that crops could be damaged if a heavy frost happens. Lets hope that is not the case.
We eventually made our way to the Nashua River Rail Trail. We usually park in Nashua, but this time I wanted something different and choose to park in Pepperell.
It was a busy day at this section. What I like about this rail trail which happens to be 11 miles long is that it is paved. Knowing this Ashley and I brought our roller blades.
Today was a busy day on the trail with a lot of roller bladers as well as bicylist. Even so I was able to capture a few pictures without any people in them.
As always Ashley is ready to strike a pose
This past weekend we ventured out to the rail trail again. This time around I brought my family with me. The Mass Central Rail Trail consists of what once was a 104-mile route of the railroad that runs from Northampton to Boston. The area I walked is part of what is known as the Wachusett Greenways rail trail. This is a 30 mile stretch found in the towns of Sterling, West Boylston, Holden, Rutland, and Oakham. This section I'm talking about today is the West Boylston/Holden section going from Oakdale to River Street along the Quinapoxet River which totals 3 miles in length.
Right from the start the area is very scenic. This wall with the ivy growing on it is found on the right side at the Oakdale entrance. On the left side you have the which is either the Quinapoxet River or the Stillwater River (not sure which). The Quinapoxet and Stillwater Rivers are the two major tributaries to the Wachusett Reservoir.
Once of the nice features if you have children is the storybook walk found at the beginning of the trail. Every 100 feet or so you can find a sign post. Each one of these posts contain a page from a children's book. For this visit the title of the book was Danny and the Dinosaur. I haven't walked this trail enough to know if the book changes at all. In any event, Ashley loved this feature.
It is not uncommon to find fisherman along the rail trail. Seasonal fishing is permitted. I happened to notice a few signs warning fisherman that water levels can change at a moments notice. I imaging that this dam and the spillway beside pictured below have something to do with it.
My first visit, this spillway did not have any water flowing through it. I was surprised to see how much water was flowing this past weekend.
A little over 1 mile in you reach the I-190 overpass. Here is where the Sprindale Mill River Walk starts. An interesting thing I noticed is that dogs are not allowed past this point. It seems that a lot of people go up to this point and turn around to head back. Not sure if it has anything to do with the dogs not allowed or just the fact that it makes a roughly 2 mile round trip.
1\2 mile past the I-190 overpass you find the Springdale Mill. This is a historic site dating back to 1865. By 1879, the mill manufactured 250,000 yards of fancy cassimeres (closely woven twill wool, usually used for men's suits), and employed over 35 people, a large percentage of the adult population of Springdale.
Pictured here is not the original turbine used at the mill, but it is the same model.
This site has two locations if you will. Along side the river and on the west side of the rail trail is where the mill was. If you head east and walk up the trail leading up the hill you will find where the village was. An important part of the mill being successful was having able workers to work the mill. This village was owned by the mill owner and had multifamily tenant buildings. In all roughly 35 adults lived here.
About all that is left of the village is these stone foundations. You will find 5 or 6 of these at the top of the hill. Mill operation ceased its operations in 1906. This was around the time that the Wachusett Reservoir was created and there was fear that the river feeding it would get polluted by this mill as well as others.
I'd have to say, I just love the reflections I see here each time I visit.