Sunday, June 9, 2013

June Featured Artist in the Gallery at Marina Square

I have been working hard preparing for my Featured Artist Show in the Gallery at Marina Square this month. I have almost 40 different images on display as well as tiles and cards. It would be my pleasure to see you at the reception this coming Friday from 5-8pm or some other time this month. I have some new photos as well as some of my best sellers. I even have a few 'creative' works up. If you are unable to make to Morro Bay go to:  

I have many of my photos for you to see on this site. You can even buy them on line if you wish. I thank each and every one of you for the opportunity to share my photography with you.

Sunday, April 14, 2013



Recently there have been numerous Sea Otters making their home in the Morro Bay harbor. They are a joy to watch. Most of the time they raft together and sleep bobbing in the water wrapped up with kelp to keep them anchored. But sometimes they frolic and play with abandon - especially the young adolescents. One morning I was able to photograph a group of these youngsters as they played. But no one shot captured what I wanted. So I decided to combine images together into a composite that told the story I imagined.
I started with a shot of 2 otters.
Okay. I decided that three Otters would be more interesting. So I found a shot of a pop-up Otter and extracted it. 

I added the extracted third Otter into the scene.
I liked it, but in another shot I had taken the water was incredibly beautiful. So I combined the two shots using a layer mask in Photoshop.
This was getting close to what I had envisioned. I just wished the Otters had some kelp around them. So I searched my archive of shots and found one that had some kelp I thought might work. I extracted the kelp and a bit of it's reflection.
I positioned the kelp over the belly of the front Otter and tweaked it a bit to make it fit.
Ta Dah! Three Otters playing in beautiful water with kelp to boot.
The playful Otters gave me the chance to play too!

Friday, March 29, 2013

Happy Easter

A new day dawns. Easter has always been the Season of hope and possibility to me. And I am reminded each morning that I have the opportunity to begin fresh - to start over again. The mistakes and blunders of the day past are just that - past. Some mornings are brilliant, others are more subtle - especially here in Morro Bay. But when it is good, it is spectacular. I have won the lottery in life. I live in a free Country, I am loved, I have good health, I have an abundance of everything I could possibly want, and I am surrounded by Natural beauty. I am eternally thankful for all these gifts. I am also aware that I have an obligation to give back and to share some of my riches. I pray for the grace of a generous heart. Easter opens me up and allows the Light to flow through me. I hope each of you finds your own light and joy this Season too. Happy Easter.

Friday, March 22, 2013

I survived a computer crash!

 Merced NWR pre-dawn
Merced NWR 'clouds' of Snow Geese
Last month Don and I took a trip over to the Central Valley in California to photograph in Merced National Wildlife Refuge. It was my first visit to this amazing place. There are thousands of birds overwintering on the series of ponds and wetlands that make up the refuge. We spent three days enjoying and photographing there. I have always wanted to experience a huge number of birds flying and calling and making a 'cloud' in the sky. I got my wish. There must have been about 30,000 Snow and Ross's geese present and on our first afternoon at Merced NWR I saw the 'cloud' I had dreamt about. Thousands of geese rose and circled in the sky - all set against the backdrop of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. It was jaw dropping! We also saw numerous other birds: Sandhill Cranes, White-faced Ibis, various ducks, Swallows and many many more. This is definitely a place I want to revisit.
I took over 2100 photos. I could hardly wait to get home to start processing my images. BUT!!!! That is when my problems began. For the first 30 minutes or so all was fine, then my computer froze. I tried everything I could think of to get back up and running, but to no avail. GRRRRR! My old computer was about 6 years old and I knew it was getting to the point of replacement, but..... I called my 'computer man' and when he took a look at my system the next day, I was informed that my Mother Board had fried. The good news - if there can be any good news in this situation - was that the hard drive was okay. Fortunately, all my images and documents were safely stored on multiple external hard drives so none of my important stuff was lost. Now three weeks later I have a new super-duper computer and am almost back to normal. There are still a few glitches to work out, but for the most part I am happy at this point. Now I need to get back to work!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Spring is on the way

It has been sunny and warm here the last few days - definitely Spring weather. And the Monarch Butterflies love it. I was happy to find these lovelies flitting about in a green field filled with wild radish plants. Their bright orange wings clearly stood out against the brilliant green foliage. I took some of the standard type of shots with them perched on the purple flowers, but then I became obsessed with idea of trying to catch them in flight. Oh, what a challenge! Who knew that butterflies were so fast. But my persistence paid off and I was able to capture some interesting flight shots. I was especially impressed by just how flexible they are. As they get ready to land on a flower, they push their wings far down and at the same time arch their bodies up. I have never clearly observed this behavior before. But the magic of still photography reveals the action. I love Monarchs. To me their wings are like small panes of stained glass - a delight to the eye and the heart.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

What I saw at the Bird Festival

 White-tailed Kite

Common Merganser take off
I had a wonderful time at the Morro Bay Bird Festival last weekend. The weather was perfect. I spent time with many friends and had the opportunity to see lots of birds. And best of all, I was able to capture some great photos.
The top 2 photos are of a White-tailed Kite eating a mouse. I have taken many White-tailed Kite photos, but I have never captured this behavior before. He was perched on a post at the side of the road and was not about to fly away until he finished his meal. I was able to get very close by shooting out the side window of our car. Usually these birds are skittish and keep their distance, so it was a real gift to be so close. 
Later in the weekend we took a pontoon boat ride on Lopez Lake. We were very lucky that it was not too cold or windy. When this female Common Merganser took off,  I was in the right place to get a whole sequence of shots. It was amazing to watch her run acoss the water, all the while madly flapping her wings, trying to get enough lift to take off. The glassy water made some beautiful reflections. 

Thursday, January 17, 2013

More happy news

poster featuring my Flicker photo and a photo of me
that will be shown at the Morro Bay Bird Festival 
this weekend
California Quail
More amazing good things are coming my way. This morning when I opened up our local newspaper - The Tribune - I found that my Flicker photo was featured on the front page of the Local section. Woohoo! And the photo that my husband, Don, took of me is there too. So we both got published at the same time. This whole experience has far exceeded my wildest expectations. 
Tomorrow is the beginning of the Morro Bay Bird Festival - an annual event that has been going on 17 years. I am going to be honored at the Festival and a poster of my winning Flicker photo is going to be on display at the registration area of the Festival. I am also going to be signing prints of my photo at the opening reception on Friday evening. Can you believe it???!! 
I have to keep myself a little bit grounded, so I went out to photograph at Montana de Oro State Park and found a lovely California Quail. This 'lookout' male stood on guard and alert in a nearby tree while a covey of Quail fed on the ground below. He sounds the warning if he senses any danger and the whole group instantly disappears into the brush. I have tried many times to find a cooperative 'lookout' and get a shot like this. At last, my persistence has paid off.