Monday, July 21, 2014

One good Tern

… deserves another

The story started innocently enough. I had added one of my tern photos to my Fine Art America gallery and that resulted in a Facebook post. My friend Larry, always ready with a witty remark, commented “One good tern deserves another.” FAA-tern-and-chick

Of course I had to respond.  I warned him that I had lots of tern photos. He thought that “The little fellow looks a little bare. I think he needs a terncoat.” I warned him that the discussion “may take a tern for the worse.”

And so the story took another tern.

Mama, are these car tracks?

Mama, are these the car tracks you warned me about?

Yes dear, you are standing in the middle of the road.

Yes dear, you are standing in the middle of the road.

Run for your life, her terning back!

Run for your life, he's TERNing back!




Rescue chopper?

Mother tern frantically follows rescue helicopter toward hospital.


The sky terns dark.



Of course, my friend Cathy couldn’t settle for this and terned on me, “Ludwig. !?? I'm surprised. You … love birds.” I assured her that “only the story here took a tern for the worse - no terns were harmed in the filming of this story. Only in telling.”

So now it is my tern to to wrap this up and tell you, dear reader, a little more about this story and this place.

There is a marvelous rookery in Florida where terns and seagulls hatch their young right by a popular beach. Florida has had a love for cars on their hard-packed beaches – you heard of Daytona? – and this place is one of the parks where cars are allowed. There are safeguards and restrictions.



You can see the wild life area signs and ropes, and the beach in front of the rookery is also off limits to vehicles.

The little fellow in the story above strolled out into the “people area”.

Royal tern chicks - waiting for lunch

Last I saw of the little tyke, his mother was leading the youngster back to the rookery. So to the best of my knowledge the story terned out OK. Alright, alright, I will tern it off now!

Thank you read reader for putting up with this story, hope you enjoyed the photos. Now it’s your turn to make a witty comment.


© 2014 Ludwig Keck

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Coastal air traffic

Us humans could never manage such stress.

... Black-top 1204, turning onto final approach ... HEY, TOWER, there is high speed traffic on the glide path !!!

... ok, tower, touching down. After that scare don't expect an elegant landing ...

Can you imagine human traffic controllers coping with such traffic? And here there is no control tower in sight, in fact, there is no control, just bird brains!


Monday, June 16, 2014


Peachtree Corners Festival

On the second weekend in June Peachtree Corners holds its annual festival. Here some views from the 2014 event. This post is really a test of Windows Live Writer and how it handles today’s Microsoft OneDrive and more. Click on some of the images to see what happens. Be sure to click on the panorama!

Walking Tree

Food at the Festival



For some technical details visit Live Writer Basics.



Wednesday, June 4, 2014

A rose by any other …

"A rose by any other name would smell as sweet", so said Shakespeare, but would a rose in another color look as pretty?

I had a bit of time on my hands the other day and was rummaging through my archive. I came across the original raw image of one of my “famous” images and thought, why not give it another interpretation? Then I discovered that I had taken two photos of that rose. The other exposure had not even been converted from the raw image file. Totally ignored for six years.

The photos were nothing special, just pictures of a rose in the Botanical Garden of Georgia, photographed way back in May of 2008. But I had used a “café art” interpretation on my Shutterfly gallery cover of one of them. With a lot of noise added it has also served as one of the download practice images for readers of my “Digital Pictures Basics” books. Thus the “fame”.

There were already a number of “interpretations” of this photo in my archive, unshared and unseen. The other exposure, taken from a slightly different angle, has a more disturbing background, thus its total neglect. I decided the classic rose shape deserved some more exposure. Several version were shared on my blogs and in social media, so here is the rest of the story.

First a cropped version of the “famous” one:

A nice enough photo of a rose. Certainly not an exhibition quality image. So it should not surprise that this picture has not been shared before.

Here it is as seen in “café art” dress on my Shutterfly gallery:


I had made a couple of versions in that style. The blue one is a bit gruesome.

The real “fame”, as I already said, comes form the version used to demonstrate “noise” in photos. With my Digital Pictures Basics books reader also get a link for downloading practice photos. The books explain how to make this into a better photo using Microsoft Photo Gallery. Here is a larger versions and a hopelessly noisy black and white version.

Another previously unpublished version just dropped out the background altogether. I rather like this version.

Now the “other” one

The companion photo has the flowers in the background much closer to the rose. Both photos were taken as verticals. Here is a “café art” version of the previously unused exposure. The full frame as it came out of the camera is used here. As you can see the formatting and the background are less than successful.

I decided that just the classic outline of the blossom could serve as attractive images. In fact, when shared on social media, they were well received.

My favorite tool, especially for working with outlines of objects, is Topaz Simplify. This marvelous “painting” tool, or filter as some call these, has sliders for adjusting the line thickness and the feature sizes to be used, and actually a lot more. Here are four very simple rose “drawings” derived from this image.

So here you have a white rose, two red ones, and a yellow rose. Which looks better to you? Is a rose in another color more beautiful?


You may have discovered this already. Each image above is a link to the same photo in an album on my OneDrive. You can go back and forth there to inspect them in more detail – even see them as a slide show.


© 2014 Ludwig Keck