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Archive for the ‘Photography’ Category


Boreal Owl in Box

Originally uploaded by dr.Ozda

While myself and several of my colleagues were stuck in a two and a half hour Safety training, my co-worker, dr. Ozda, was snapping pictures of this boreal owl in its nesting box whilst precariously perched on top of a ladder on top of a doghouse. Had there been an OSHA inspector anywhere in the neighborhood, he would certainly have been cited for violating the very safety regulations we were being warned against. And he was still having a better time than we were.

Safety is overrated.

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Sky High

Originally uploaded by dr.Ozda

My colleague, Dr. Ozda, took this picture which, more than any thousand words I could write, pretty much sums up the situation in Hobbiton. The cruel irony is that we have both an oil pipeline and a refinery just outside of town AND we’re still paying these outrageous prices. Eventually, we’re going to have to start knocking holes in the pipeline and dragging home our oil in buckets like they do in Nigeria.

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#36.) On-line photo editing software–The beauty of photo editing software is that it can turn a so-so photo into a work of art. I was really happy with Piknik which I found very intuitive and easy to use. Below is an example of one of my photos that I was able to alter in Piknik.

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This is the original photo taken at the Oakland Farmers Market in Oakland, CA in October of this year.
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And this is the edited version of same. I cropped the photo, heightened the colors, blurred the focus, put a border on it, and saved the edited version to my hard drive–all done using only the freeware version of Piknik. You can pay a fee to get more options, but, for an amateur like me, I had all the elements I needed. Another nice feature: you don’t need to create an account to use the software. This baby is sweet, I’m tellin’ you.

There are other on-line photo editing services out there, but I think Piknik is the best. Try it, you’ll like it.

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Re: California Dreamin’

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Here are a small sample of the pictures I took while I was in Oakland, CA this October for the Oral History Association conference. The one above came out the best I think. I took all of these photos with one of those disposable cameras, then had them developed, and had a photo disk made of the prints.

I was inspired by an article I read about a photographer who took some really cool shots using a cheesy cellphone camera. His point was that if you respected the limitations of your particular camera, you could still get some really good shots. Some of the pictures came out blurry–I need to be farther away than four feet apparently to get something approaching a close-up. The camera also did better outdoors than indoors. The indoor pictures appear much more grainy.

Oakland, in general, was very photogenic. There was a farmers’ market held just around the corner from the hotel and I had fun snapping pictures of the produce, most of which I had never seen for sale outside of a supermarket (persimmons, grapes, lemons, oranges with the leaves still attached, almonds, etc.).

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The fountain in front of the Barnes and Noble Bookstore at Jack London Square. The day I was there, the weather was unseasonably hot and humid. The pigeons seemed to enjoy cooling their feet in the water.

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A Renaissance-type statue that was on the smoking balcony of the conference hotel. No one was using the balcony because–gasp!–it was sixty degrees above zero. Too cold for Californians.

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My personal favorite: a sidewalk sign reminding you not to dump anything into the waterways. The top two words on the piece of the litter in the picture read “Bad Boy”. Just tellin’ it like it is.

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