In a struggle to be happy and free

Drystone Wall

Category: show and tell Page 2 of 41

Kitty ramp

You may recall that I posted early in 2014 about buying a 2×6 so the cat could get up onto my bookshelves. She wasn’t having any of it because the angle was a bit steep so I thought I’d wrap it in carpet.

4M6C3244.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 17–40mm 1:4L @ 22mm, 1/100, f/4, 1600 ISO

4M6C3244.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 17 – 40mm 1:4L @ 22mm, 1/100, f/4, 1600 ISO

As you can see, I didn’t wrap it in carpet. I wrapped it in ⅜″ twisted sisal rope. I read that’s the ideal material for a scratching post so in addition to wrapping the rope around the board, I wanted to make sure the rope would not move or shift. To accomplish this, I glued it. And I mean seriously glued it. It took nearly a year because I’d glue a 6″ length on one side, wait at least six hours, then flip the board, and glue the next 6″ length…over and over and over. This works out to 32 days per foot, assuming that I glue two 6″  lengths a day, which I did not always manage. This is why it took the better part of a year to complete. I just didn’t think about how long it would take when I started. It’s probably for the best because I’m not sure I would have started. I’m glad I finished it though.

When I completed the task, the cat wanted nothing to do with it! So I dropped the board down to one shelf below the top and lured her up by placing three treats along the board. Initially she would only eat the bottom treat because she could get to it from the top of the sofa. Eventually though, she went all the way up and I was so pleased. The elapsed time between buying the board and taking the photo above was about 14 months.

But damn it, mission accomplished!

Vote? Check!

Hurray for advance polls! My voting for this election is done. Make sure you cast your ballot too!

On a related topic, I saw this gem earlier today:

IMG_0717.jpg: iPhone5s, back camera @ 4.15mm, 1/2700, f/2.2, 32 ISO

Lakeside view

Earlier today I posted a photo on Facebook. I took it with my phone to show I was on the shore of Lake Ontario. Well, you don’t think I would take only a mobile phone photo, do you?! In fact, one of the reasons I went to Niagara-on-the-Lake was to take another photo of the Toronto skyline, across the lake. Voilà:

4M6C3504.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 400mm 1:5.6L @ 1/250, f/8, 400 ISO with tripod

4M6C3504.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 400mm 1:5.6L @ 1/250, f/8, 400 ISO with tripod

I love the fog. It was also nearing sunset, thus the colour.

Super-Blood-Moon!

We had a lunar eclipse this evening! The news was hammering on about the super-blood-moon. Can they be any more dramatic? I suppose it wasn’t the most exiting news day. It was a super-moon because it was at perigee, which is the point in its orbit nearest the earth. It’s a blood-moon because a total lunar eclipse has a red colour.

Before the whole show started, I went outdoors to make sure I knew where the moon was going to be, and plan where I would be to see it. It certainly did seem brighter than normal. I took a photo of what I saw.

4M6C3461.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 400mm 1:5.6L @ 1/400, f/8, 100 ISO

4M6C3461.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 400mm 1:5.6L @ 1/400, f/8, 100 ISO

To my great disappointment, a cloud bank was approaching. This was the best I could manage once the clouds arrived, and as you can see, the Earth’s shadow covers just less than half of the moon. Also note that the shadow is curved. This is why Aristotle (correctly) deduced that the earth was a sphere 2400 years ago!

4M6C3463.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 400mm 1:5.6L @ 0.4, f/5.6, 1600 ISO

4M6C3463.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 400mm 1:5.6L @ 0.4, f/5.6, 1600 ISO

To my surprise, as totality approached, the clouds cleared out. Here, the Earth’s shadow almost completely covers the moon. Note that it doesn’t really look like the photo below. Your eyes can see far more dynamic range (light and dark) than my camera. The photo shows just a sliver of light and the rest is invisible, but looking at it, you could see a hint of the rust coloured tinge on the shadowed portion.

4M6C3474.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 400mm 1:5.6L @ 1/200, f/5.6, 3200 ISO

4M6C3474.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 400mm 1:5.6L @ 1/200, f/5.6, 3200 ISO

The photo above was exposed to show you the bright portion of the moon. The photo below is exposed to show you the portion of the moon in shadow. The over-exposed part looks like it’s bulging, but it really isn’t. That’s an artifact of the over-exposure.

4M6C3475.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 400mm 1:5.6L @ 0.3, f/5.6, 6400 ISO

4M6C3475.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 400mm 1:5.6L @ 0.3, f/5.6, 6400 ISO

I wanted to wait for the middle of the totality so the moon would show as uniform a brightness as possible. Even the photo below shows a bright lower-right limb because it was taken toward the beginning of the totality. Still, it shows a great improvement as compared to the photo above. But I couldn’t wait any longer because another wave of clouds arrived.

4M6C3497.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 400mm 1:5.6L @ 1/4, f/5.6, 6400 ISO

4M6C3497.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 400mm 1:5.6L @ 1/4, f/5.6, 6400 ISO

Note also that while many total lunar eclipse photos will appear like the photo above, it doesn’t look at all like this to the naked eye. It looks far dimmer and more rust coloured than orange. Note also that the last two photos have specs in the blackness around the moon. Those are stars. The other photos don’t show any stars because the exposures are much shorter. As a comparison, the camera settings I used for the last two photos allow about 12 times as much light into the camera as compared to the third-last photo and 1500 times as much light as the first photo.

All in all, I’m very pleased. Even with the clouds. The last time I took photos of a lunar eclipse, it was ‑20º outdoors. That wasn’t much fun.

Self-portrait. Kind-of.

4M6C3422.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 17–40mm 1:4L @ 40mm, 1/1250, f/4, 100 ISO

4M6C3422.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 17 – 40mm 1:4L @ 40mm, 1/1250, f/4, 100 ISO

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