Tag Archives: sun

My not so perfect day


I must admit that there are times when I’m just downright stupid.

I was waiting for 8-21-17 ever since I first heard about the solar eclipse over a year ago. Now in all that time, you would think that a smart person would’ve looked into how to properly take a picture of the upcoming solar eclipse. I will take this time to refer back to my opening sentence.

I had a full year to prepare. Did I do it? No. I planned on going to South Carolina for the event. At least I didn’t do that.

So let’s investigate why my declaration of dumbness is so apt. Back in 2014 I witnessed a partial solar eclipse at nearly the same place as this year. On that occasion, I was able to get plenty of good pictures and even a video that I’ve posted on youtube. So, in my mind, I should do things the same way as I did then and everything would be hunky-dory, right?

This was my stubborn pride killing off brain cells like the black plague.

The problem was, I didn’t compare the circumstances between events. In 2014, the eclipse didn’t start until nearly sundown. All of that atmosphere blocked much of the sunlight, allowing me to take pictures with reckless impunity. Whereas this year, the sun was high in the sky, with nothing to block the brightness except a stray cloud or two.

My cameras and I weren’t happy.

As I sat watching this awesome sight through my cardboard glasses, an impotent rage was welling within me at my helplessness. I tried with every camera I had brought, but none of the pictures were holding a candle to the sight of the sun through my glasses.

In sheer desperation, I cut the lens out of my extra set of glasses and taped it to the lens of my video camera. It wasn’t perfect, but it was good enough to consider the trip, not a total failure.

So what did I learn from my brush with defeat?

Knowledge is out there for a reason. Use it.

Hopefully, I’ll do better in seven years when the sun’s shadow passes by again.

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Golden

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As soon as I read the title of this week’s Tuesday Photo Challenge, I knew exactly which one I wanted to use. I took this picture just over a year ago and it’s been one of my favorites ever since.

Not far from my house is a lake that has many waterfowl residents including this Heron. The Herons are usually very skittish and I was surprised that this one stood there long enough for me to take its picture.

http://mikesimages4.wixsite.com/mikekelsophotography

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Golden

 

Photo Op 12

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A little fog, combined with a lot of sunlight, make for a magical combination.

This pic is from last year. I was out walking around the yard on a foggy morning when the sun broke through the clouds and gave me this amazing picture.

I love the refraction in the rays that brings out part of the spectrum of light.

I took several pictures, but this one had the best and brightest colors to it.

I hope you enjoy it as much as I have.

 

 

Image copyright 2016 Mike Kelso

Photo op 7

20110905(41)copyImage copyright 2011 Mike Kelso

This image from 2011 typifies why I call these posts ‘Photo op’s’. I was driving home from work and saw this happening in front of me. I whipped my car to the side of the road, grabbed my camera, and started shooting. I’ve been very pleased with this picture ever since. 

One thing I try to practice in my photography is be prepared for any opportunity. I always have my camera with me. Even if I have to use the camera on my phone (which I’ve been doing a lot lately on my Instagram) I make sure that I have a camera with me at all times. A large percentage of the pictures I take are because I had a camera with me to use when I saw something interesting. 

There are several times that I have been unprepared for something special to happen and I didn’t get the picture of it. But that is another post.

Enjoy.

Photo op 2: Solar Eclipse

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Image copyright 2014 Mike Kelso

I took this picture during the 2014 partial solar eclipse. It passed through Pennsylvania right around sunset. I was hoping to get a shot of the sun with a slightly bigger chunk taken out of it, but the clouds moved in, obscuring my last few moments before sunset. 

Don’t get me wrong, I’m very happy with this picture and a few of the others I took that day. This is the best of the bunch, I was just hoping for a little more. 

Fast forward to 2017. Everyone who has ever looked through a telescope or worn a pocket protector is having a major conniption fit over the solar eclipse that will pass over North America in one month.  

Truth be told, I’m pretty excited myself. I live in Pennsylvania and I had considered driving to South Carolina just to get pictures. It would’ve been an all day and night affair. I would’ve had to start driving at 1 AM, get there, take my pictures, then drive straight back, arriving home around 2 AM, then getting up for work at my usual 4:30 AM.  

Needless to say, I scrapped that idea.  

The more I thought about it, the more it made sense to take pictures from where I live. We will still have a partial eclipse, but more importantly, the pictures I take will include the area that I call home. I’ll still be able to look online and see all the professional pictures of the total eclipse, but I won’t be able to see any that were shot from my town unless I take them.  

I’m looking forward to it and will start scouting locations in the following weeks. 

In the meantime, enjoy this pic from a few years back and cross your fingers that August 21st will be sunny all day, or at least until after the moon passes.

Just don’t forget, if you plan on taking pictures of the eclipse or even watching it, make sure you get some glasses for protection. I’m ordering mine today.

Have a great day.