Out in the sticks

I enjoy shooting out in the country, though I rarely get the chance.  I live in a city, and when I travel it is always to another city for business.  I just don’t get “out in the sticks” very often.  But when I do, it’s a real joy to explore and photograph all the little stuff you can find there.  It’s very different than city shooting.

Take this photo for example.  I was driving along a back road outside a very small town in the Texas hill country.  It was sunrise – which is when I love to shoot the most – and I came across this little entrance to a farm.  Really, it’s nothing spectacular, and most people would drive by and not pay it a bit of attention.  But I love reflections and that big puddle there just called to me.  I guess it sort of reminded me of visits to my Grandfather’s farm when I was a kid.

Sunrise on a country road

I guess I could also call this "moon set on a country road" since that is the moon up there as it is making its way on its nightly journey to the other side of the world.

I got up early enough one morning while in the Texas hill country to get out and shoot the sunrise.  Plus, I wanted to get over to Luckenbach, TX and shoot that town before anyone else got there.  I figured 7am on a Monday morning ought to provide me with little interruption - and it did!  Anyways, en route I noticed how the sky was aglow with great color - plus I just like road shots - so I pulled over on this little country road and fired away!

Into the Upper Valley

Just a quick post for today - and I want to thank everyone for the visits and comments this week, I really do appreciate them!

We spent some time in Red River, NM this past summer - as we have many times.  It's a beautiful little town, surrounded by mountains and it's just a relaxing place to visit.  One afternoon we went for a little drive into the Upper Valley, which is just outside of town.  At some point we crested a hill and I saw this scene.  I had to stop and get a shot - I love road shots of all sorts.  This one was too pretty to pass up.  Thanks for stopping by!

On the road again...

By the time anyone reads this, I will be on the road with the family on a little family get away out west, to New Mexico.  We are going on a road trip to see some family, see some sights, and I will probably take a few pictures (ahem).  I will post from the road but will be offline through the weekend.  

So, thanks everyone for all the visits, comments, tweets and re-tweets, and all that general goodness that comes from social media.  I really do appreciate it.  I will catch you all when I can!

(p.s. About the shot - definitely not my most serious work.  Just a quick snap from the passenger seat of the car while heading out west of Austin.  My Austin peeps will know Llano County.  I just jacked around with it in Topaz Adjust and Aperture, having fun, and figured I might as well post a road shot - and this was all I had!)

Welcome to Hye, Texas

I found this little spot en route to Fredericksburg up in the Texas hill country.  We were cruising along and when we came through this tiny little town, I knew I wanted to stop.  There was not much there - 1 or 2 buildings basically - but I find these places interesting.  I did not have enough time to seriously explore the area, so I snapped this quick shot which I found on the side of the building.

Wildflowers and water

While on my recent ramble through the Texas Hill Country in search of wildflowers, I passed over this little stream and just had to stop.  I am always up for photographs that include water, simply because I find them enjoyable.  In this case, I thought the scene had a lot of elements of beauty and interest: water flowing by, a little dirt road, the tip of a hill in the distance, and of course a splash of color from the wildflowers.  In this case, there weren't many bluebonnets here but instead these vibrant pink flowers were plentiful - fine by me!

This is a 6 exposure HDR taken at f/22, with exposures ranging from +2 to -3.  I used Photomatix to merge them into an HDR and then made my typical adjustments in PSE and some slight one in Aperture.

Springtime in the Texas Hill Country

Well, it seems spring is officially here in central Texas.  I say "officially" because this is the time of year that all the wildflowers start blooming (and all the yellow oak pollen makes you sneeze!), and boy do they pop up all over the place!  The bluebonnet, which is the blue flower in this photo, is abundant and is also the Texas State Flower. They are growing everywhere and we get a lot of folks from many places that come down here to check out this seasonal spectacle.  While on this photo hunt, we came across a group of ladies taking a bike tour through the area, just to see the flowers.  They were from all over the country:  Washington State, California, Connecticut, etc.  This photo is from basically the middle of nowhere in the Texas Hill Country.  We went on a ramble, in search of beautiful views with lots of flowers, and were lucky enough to find just the right places, tucked away off the beaten path.  I really like this shot because this is sort of the classic view of the Hill Country that you see represented in oil paintings and things like that.  You have the empty, lonely dirt road, seemingly disappearing into the distance, with a nice big tree, the hills in the distance, and of course lots of bluebonnets.  I have a lot more photos to share from this little adventure so more will be coming soon!  So, pop some Claritin, grab your camera and get out there!

This is a 6 exposure HDR taken at f/22, with exposures ranging from +2 to -3.  I merged them into an HDR in Photomatix, and then made some adjustments in PSE and Aperture.  I often find that some of the colors coming out of Photomatix are really bright, so I had to tone them down to achieve a more natural look.  Hope you like it!