Summer Photo Sampler

Thought I’d get one out there. It being summer and all.

30 Comments on “Summer Photo Sampler”

  1. :big dumb grin: So sweet, I feel I should go brush my teeth.

    Just finished Fuzzy Nation last night. Thank you, Mr. Scalzi; as a fan of the original, I was one of those who doubted, just a little, that you could pull it off, and you have done so in a spectacular fashion, and deserve the praise you’re getting for doing so (to which I add mine.) Now I’m to dig up that original and compare.

  2. I love how if you scroll just right, the title of the next entry becomes the caption for these pictures.

  3. So, I’ve been trying to learn a little bit of photography lately so that maybe I could buy a real camera and take photos with it.

    The field of view in the second shot is pretty cool. I would guess a big F stop for that, then longer exposure and higher ISO sensitivity to compensate?

    Do you remember what settings you use on various photos? Or maybe its stored on the digital file somewhere? Hm, actually, that would be useful if for no other reason than to review what I did and maybe get a feel for what I may have done wrong.

    Do they store the settings for Fstop, exposure length, and ISO sensitivity in the file?

    The third shot, I just read something about that effect. It’s got somethign to do with multi-piece lenses and light getting reflected by the surface of the different pieces of glass. Gargleblargle! I can’t remember the name though.

    Something about the last shot that’s… different (besides your shadow being in teh shot). Maybe a tad high on the light gathering. Seems… bright? I can see the individual blades of grass fairly clearly, and the hair that’s moving isn’t a blurry blob, so I assume a fast shutter, but maybe a low F stop or high ISO setting? The white tshirt and everyone’s legs seem saturated, or at least some loss of contrast. Hm, given how long your shadow is, it’s probably near sunset, which means the trees in the background were likely fairly dark at the time, and yet in the photo they’re actually almost midrange in luminance.

    Man, photography is complicated.

  4. The Skeptical Homeschooler – Portland, Oregon – Attorney, writer, homeschooler, would-be historian.

    Gorgeous. I love the picture of your girls: there’s just so much joy in that moment.

  5. Greg, many digital cameras record some of the EXIF data. Wikipedia has an article with the gruesome details of that. You’ll almost almost always get basic exposure data: shutter, iris, ISO, flash, focal length, and usually more. I learned more in the first three months of using a digital point and shoot (a Canon a630) than I had in years of film photography; the instant feedback is a great teacher.

  6. Jean Marie Bauhaus – Tulsa, OK – Jean Bauhaus is a hybrid fiction author and the author of Self-Publishing for the Broke Author. She writes paranormal romance, urban fantasy and horror under the name Jean Marie Bauhaus, and she makes her living as a freelance writer and editor and a self-publishing assistant and coach. A ginger GenXer who speaks with a twang that underscores her Northeastern Oklahoma upbringing, Jean now lives in the north Arkansas Ozarks with her husband Matt and their small crew of four-legged dependents. Find out more about Jean's books and services and download a free book at!
    J. M. Bauhaus

    I’m impressed that Krissy can still lift Athena up like that. I usually have to stop doing that with my nieces and nephews when they hit around 6 or 7.

  7. The title of the next article underneath the picture of Athena is pretty much the perfect caption. Intentional or not.

  8. htom, thanks for the link. The more I try to learn about cameras, the more it seems I don’t know. I was thinking about getting a nikon dslr. It doesn’t use exif file format, but it does have a raw .nef format. I get the impression that has the info about various camera settings.

    Here’s a question for ya. If a nikon dslr lists a bunch of flash modes but not “flash fill” is that possibly correct? I can’t imagine a “real” camera not having such a basic setting.

  9. Great photos. What a beautiful spot you have there. Does your house attract lightning out there in the open? Friends of mine have a similar setting and finally had to install a “whole house” surge protector. The view is worth it, though!

  10. Greg — exif is a format for a metadata package about a photo; it’s included in the photo data file, and by default is (usually) copied with it (with some errors by some software :frown:.) Nikon dSLRs have moved far beyond flash fill. You’ll be surprised at what Nikon’s CLS (Creative Lighting System) can do automagicly, especially if you get an external flash to use with the on-camera flash. (Canon, Pentax, and Sony, too, not just Nikon; each has their own flavor of fancy flash modes with differing names and bragging.)

  11. Greg:

    Regarding my shots, I typically take pictures on Auto settings and then fiddle with the data in Photoshop.

  12. You have a fantastic life, Mr. Scalzi. I would hate you as if I wasnt sure you know how lucky you are and that you have a humble gratitude for it.

  13. John P. Needham – Spring, TX-based consultant in the exchange traded/OTC derivatives space. Proud father. Passion for good food & wine. Lousy but devoted golfer.
    John Needham

    Wow, that’s a great picture. And you really do have a gorgeous house.

  14. Mark W. Tiedemann – St. Louis, MO – Writer, photographer, musician (sort of), bookseller, opinionated observer, and a slew of lesser attributes not especially suitable for public scrutiny.
    Mark Tiedemann

    Great shots. You do some of the best cloud photographs. You could probably do a fairly decent exhibit of your clouds and sunsets.

  15. Dan – Dan Hartensveld, CDIA is President of The EDI Project, a solution provider specializing in healthcare informatics. He has been working with large health insurers, providers and healthcare technology companies since 1996 involving complex data integration, claims automation, risk adjustment, The Affordable Care Act, HIE, HIX, to name a few. Lately, the company has been successful in developing and putting into production massively scaleable, analytics projects for use in processing "Big Data" sets.

    That new mower seems to be doing a hell of a job. I am sure the operator has a lot to do that as well of course, but it looks like a Scott’s Fertilizer ad or something. Very nice.

    While I am on the subject, what do you do with your grass clippings? Leave them on the lawn to mulch, collect them and compost yourself, or collect them and hand them to the city? (or something else whatever?)

  16. That last photo makes me incredibly happy, and also reminds me to keep doing leg presses so I’ll be able to aeroplane my daughter when she’s Athena’s age.

  17. Sir, you are a damn lucky man. Last photo – my wife does that with our kids too — is it a midwest thing? (PS: Midwest girls are awesome huh?) First photo – I’ve fallen in love with your house. Any chance you could give us a few more shots — the wrap-around veranda is awesome.

  18. Are any of these available in higher resolution? Something along the lines of 1680×150 for desktop wallpapering purposes? In particular I’m wondering about the 2nd and 3rd because, while your family is lovely, it would probably be creepy for me to use photos of them as my desktop wallpaper.

  19. Mr Scalzi. reading up on cameras I believe your particular model supports the idea of exposure ‘bracketing’. on push of the button will take three pictures. one at what it thinks is the best exposure settings. one below and one above.

    if the camera overexposes, then the lower ev shot should be about right.

    otherwise, your stuck with photoshopping an image where the highlights washed out and you cant get them back.

    something consider enabling on that awesome camera of yours.

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