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Cell Phone Street Photography

I walked to the local Ace Hardware this morning and took a few shots along the way. I noticed some attempts to thwart graffiti. I love all the color and the bold designs. I hope these works of art remain unspoiled for a long time.

I also discovered that my Nexus 5X is almost perfect for street photography. There are a number of reasons for this.

  • The camera quality is pretty good.
  • Like most phones, a picture can be snapped by pressing any button, and lots of folks don’t know this.
  • Tiny lens produces large depth of focus.
  • No one is surprised to see a person carrying a cell phone in his hand while walking down the street. I can snap away at will.

I just figured this out this morning, and have taken just a handful of shots on the street today. I still need to work on technique, and I need to find a way to stop touching the screen while shooting, which has a tendency to change settings, but I see lots of promise in this technique. Excited to do more!

Step One in My Recovery

To deactivate your account:

  1. Click the account menu at the top right of any Facebook page.
  2. Select Settings.
  3. Click Security in the left column.
  4. Choose Deactivate your account then follow the steps to confirm.

Halloween Photo Booth

I’m getting better and better results from the booth. Not just because of tweaks to the hardware, but also due to the fact that my audience at work knows how to get better pictures out of it. (Get closer! Lean in a bit!) And although I can fit 10 or 12 people in the booth, I’m in love with solo shots.

I have two more tweaks in mind for the next time I set up the boof. A second camera remote will allow me to take additional pictures, and a little music will put my subjects more into the mood. Stay tuned for an even better booth!

Nova in the Booth

Kelly’s birds definitely do not want anything to do with this shiny contraption, but I was able to get this cool shot of Nova just as she made her escape.


I decided not to these in a more casual setting than my more formal headshots. These were taken handheld with my Fuji X100 and a Nikon SB 800 flash.

I wanted a bit of variety, so I shot them in different locations around he office.

This is My Brain on kubrick

My mind is still reeling from this weekend’s viewing of the Kubrick classic accompanied by the San Francisco Symphony. The orchestra was flanked by two choirs. Their performance of Lux Aeterna was positively spine-tingling. I believe I shed a tear or two.

In case you forgot, filming for this ground-breaking film was begun in 1965, and made entirely without CGI. Amazing.

Thermofisher Ad

Well, we gave up on the Lombard Street idea. I thought it was an impossible shot, and it turned out I was right about that. So, we opted for another iconic Bay Area view.

What I like most is that this piece will be printed 6 x 4 FEET in size, and hung around Thermofisher offices world-wide.

Click here if you’d like to see the full-resolution shot.

Seeing the Unseeable

Here’s an interesting view of one of the six rows of gear I maintain in the datacenter. Looks kinda cool, eh?

You might wonder how I created an image like this, given that the rows of servers have less than three feet between them. This means I have to make the shot from about two feet from the front of the servers. Not a lot of room. Well, with my camera on a wheeled tripod, I shot this one rack at a time using a fisheye lens. A single-click the Lens Correction tool in Lightroom eliminated the distortion. I then combined the eight corrected images in PhotoShop. I didn’t spend a lot of time aligning things because, well, this is good enough. The resulting image has high enough resolution that it’s easy to read the small labels on all of the servers.

This is not the first time I created this sort of image. When I did this at my previous company, I created a clickable image map. Clicking on a machine might take you to the logbook entries for that server on my wiki, or to an ssh session on that machine, or to a web page being served by it, etc. If I get motivated to do that, I’ll share the results. Maybe.

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