Evergreen Review

photo by Derek Pell


Change in the weather pattern. East Bay, Aug. 14, 2012.


Captive Audience

photo by Derek Pell

Or maybe it’s just preaching to the converted?

Did you hear the one about Freud and Picasso?

photo by Derek Pell

Freud and Picasso were sitting on a bench…

Unfortunately I’ve forgotten the punch line.

But at least I remembered how to use the Content Aware Fill command in Photoshop CS5.

Here’s the original photo taken in Santa Rosa:


Sometimes it’s impossible to simply crop out distractions like the fire hydrant and lamp post above. You  can try changing your position, but in this example a head on angle showed the storefronts, cars, and pedestrians across the street. So you’re forced to do some work in post. In the past it would require a lot of careful cloning, but with Photoshop CS5 you need only make selections around the elements you want to remove and choose Edit / Fill /Content-Aware.


I left the planter in the background because it wasn’t a distraction and actually provided some balance to the distorted angle. However, I applied a blur to tone it down a bit.

If the fire hydrant had been red, I might have lived with it, but white steals the show.

The Dragon Has Landed

photo by Derek Pell

This shot explains why I’ll never switch from Nikon. To put it bluntly, it’s the optics, stupid. (Click on the image for a large view.)

I spied this dragonfly yesterday morning while having my first cuppa joe. I quickly grabbed my cam with a Nikon 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 G ED-IF AF-S mounted. Now every lens has a sweet spot and it pays to discover the magic number. This lens excels at f/8. (1/200 sec at f/8.0; 200mm; ISO: 200) That;’s why I tend to shoot in Aperture Priority mode. With plenty of light I can pretty much ignore the shutter speed.

The moral here is never cut corners when it comes to the glass.