Shameless Selfie: Be Afraid

I must be bored as I sit in front of my Imac with a Photobooth App. It’s a shameless selfie of a sick old man slowly getting better. Rain is on its way so I’m not impressed. Bring on that sunshine, please.

Bob Selfie


Share Your World – 2014 Week 13

Do you believe in extraterrestrials or life on other planets?

I believe I would be naive to silly to feel we are alone in this universe. There are so man planets in our galaxy that could support life that I feel there are other out there that have some form of life, including an advanced civilization.

What type of pet or pets do not want to have?

My preference for a pet would be a cat. All others need not apply.

If you were a crayon, what color would you be?


What type of transportation would you be? Why?

A girl’s bicycle. 🙂


Ladies First: A Pride of Lionesses

There was a sign upon entering the Oregon Zoo that stated the lions would be out from 9:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.. I was the first one though the gate and made my way to the Africa Exhibit to see them. They’re a crowd favorite so if you want to take real pictures you must get there early to claim a spot close to the PlexiGlas viewing window.

It was a sunny day with thin clouds that occasionally provided some diffusion to the harsh sun. There, I said it, we had sun. It’s been a week since we’ve had any in Portland, Oregon. Our new family with three cubs has claimed the bottom tier of boulders as their regular resting spot. The cubs are already acclimated to the viewing public and seem to have learned how to pose for everyone. They just follow mommy’s lead. 🙂

5 Lionesses

Macro Monday: Close-up Flowers

It’s Spring in the Pacific Northwest. The first flower festival have already begun at the Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm in Woodburn, OR. Our Oregon Zoo have flowers and plants galore that are popping up all along the pathways. It’s time to get up close and personal.

My first capture is of a rough looking flower. I’ve seen prettier ones but beauty is in the eye of the beholder. The second capture seems unworldly. It’s a beautiful plant yet I haven’t a clue of the species. I’ll look close next time to see if there’s a sign posted anywhere.

Daffodil 5

Strange New World 1

Yea, I got Outside Today

I couldn’t take it anymore. This sickness and the dreary weather has had my spirit down in the dumps lately. I checked the forecast carefully and ventured that I might get a zoo visit in today.

It was great outside, with perfect weather for the duration of my visit. I came home having shot 55 frames which should keep me in blog posts for a few days at least. I’ve processed 5-6 of my favorite shots already. With Spring in full swing here I get to diversify my photography once again. I love animals but I also love plants and street photography. I snuck a candid shot of an old man in the senior citizen priority seating area. He had nodded off so he never new I took his picture. I young man sitting across from me watched my technique carefully as I setup the camera for the lighting conditions before ever raising my camera to compose my shot. That’s an old trick I learned decades ago when professionally shooting weddings and family portraits. I don’t want my subject to have to stare at a guy taking 15 seconds to fire a single exposure. I shoot very quickly and capture the expression I want. I processed this shot as a black & white because the bright yellow safety paint everywhere was distracting from my subject, the man and the sign behind him.

Priority Seating

Kitty Years


I’m still thinking about the passing of Nicole this past month. The zoo website said she was 15 years old when she had her seizure. I looked to Google trying to find a chart that would give me a comparison of a cat’s life to a human. The old rule was 7 cat years for each human year yet that turns out to be inaccurate. Here’s what I found.

There is no reliable method for calculating exactly how old your cat is in human years. It’s often suggested that one human year is the equivalent of seven ‘cat years’, but in reality a one-year-old cat is far more mature than a seven-year-old child. Experts generally agree that the first two years of a cat’s life are roughly equal to the first 25 of a human’s. Thereafter, each additional year equals approximately four ‘cat years’.

Using this method that would have made Nikki 76 years old on a human scale.


Tiger: Black & White

Some subjects just lend themselves to a black & white image. Polar bears, old dilapidated barns in a Winter field, snow topped mountains are just a few examples. Big cats, especially tigers, are all about camouflage so  their fur and stripe configuration hold up well in a B&W composition.

Sitting deep in his cave Mikhail looks almost ghostly as he stares out at visitors. I love his markings and regal demeanor. I like the conversion to monochrome in this shot. Remember, two left mouse clicks will take you in nice and close. You can move around the composition to really check out the sharpness and detail. Enjoy!

I work hard to capture animals just as they make direct eye contact with me. This tiger is about 75 feet away so there’s no doubt where he’s looking.

Tiger B&W

Constant Rain Causing Big Trouble

FifiSince the 70 degree day that saw the death of one of our tigers it has been constantly raining. There have been major mudslides includes the disaster in Washington state that has killed dozens. Oregon has seen its share of slides as well, closing down coastal highway 6 until crews can clear the road. I hate to admit it but such slides are common this time of the year.

What isn’t normal are the dozens of small earthquakes the last two days under Mt Hood. They cause avalanches and mudslides in the area. With all the rain that translates to many feet of snow atop the mountains. It’s dangerous to drive right now with even heavier rain in the forecast the next few days. Tree roots are losing their support with the soil washing away from this constant rain.

So, no new pictures from this blogger as I’m still nursing myself back from a horrible cold and now sinus infection. It’s hard to recover in this kind of weather. Y’all be good and I’ll wait it all out. Keep Marilyn Armstrong at  in your prayers as she recovers from heart surgery.