Tag Archives: tree

Museum of Seminole County Displays Senator Sculptures

Big Tree Exhibit Panorama
Big Tree Exhibit Panorama

There’s an interesting exhibit at the Museum of Seminole County History through September 30, 2015.  It features over a hundred works of art made from the charred remains of The Senator – the 3,500 year-old cypress tree that burned in 2012.

Big Tree Exhibit - Mark Rice Senator Painting
Big Tree Exhibit – Mark Rice Senator Painting

I’ve written about The Senator before.  You can view those posts at this link.  This latest chapter in the story provides some beautiful artwork made from the ruins of a tragedy.

Big Tree Exhibit - Ted Page Seminole Indian Carving
Big Tree Exhibit – Ted Page Seminole Indian Carving

It’s well worth going over to see these in person.  It you’re there this Wednesday night (August 19th, 2015) between 5 and 7 pm, you can also meet the artists.  I have some other photos from the exhibit at this link.

Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog. Now – go make some photos!

©2015, Ed Rosack. All rights reserved.

Explore and discover – then react

Some photographers plan their photo ops in detail.  In many cases that’s a good approach. Portrait and wedding photography are genres that need advanced planning.  And if you’re going on a once in a lifetime trip, planning is prudent.  Other genres are more reactive (e.g. photo journalism).

I try to do research and planning if I’m going somewhere I haven’t been, but I don’t plan most of my photography.  Especially if I’ve been to a place before, my approach is to explore and discover, and then react to what I find.  Often, I end up with photos that I never imagine when I start out.  Which is loads of fun!

A few weeks ago, I went over to the Sanford Marina to make sunrise photos.  I arrived early and discovered very calm conditions in the harbor.  I reacted with this photo.  It’s nothing like the sunrise I originally went looking for.

Still water, sailboats, and starsStill water, sailboats, and stars – Very early and very calm at the Sanford marina

Last week, I took a ride here in Central Florida along Maytown Road between Osteen and Oak Hill.  It goes through some very undeveloped areas and ends at Seminole Rest, a small park in the Canaveral National Seashore.  In this case, I hadn’t really planned for any photos.  I was just driving to see what’s there.  I was glad to discover this gnarled old tree, although I wish I’d found a little better light to go with it.

Weathered TreeWeathered Tree – Seminole Rest, Canaveral National Seashore in Oak Hill, Florida

This last photo is from back in 2013.  It sat in my archives until this week when I discovered it again and processed it.  It took a while for me to complete my reaction to the scene.

Sun and shadowsSun and shadows – Long exposure under the pier at Cocoa Beach

The photo and video in last week’s post also resulted from the “explore, discover, react” approach.

So what’s the moral of this story?  I suppose it’s this:  If you approach photography like I do, you’d better be ready to react to a scene when you see it.  Know your equipment so you can capture what you need when you discover something.  Even in the dark or in rapidly changing situations.  Know your software capabilities too, so you understand what you need to capture.  Be ready for the opportunities that you find, and the ones that find you.


On a different subject, I realized after I published last week’s blog that embedded video isn’t included in the email.  The Jetpack plugin software that I use doesn’t even put in a link to it.  So if you read the blog only via email and wondered what the video was about, you can click here to view it on YouTube.   And you can always click on the title of the post inside the email to view it on the web.  Sorry for any confusion.


Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog. Now – go exploring – and make some photos!

©2015, Ed Rosack. All rights reserved.

Around Central Florida

Here are three photos from last week that I made in and around Central Florida. First up is the Cocoa Waterfront.  I liked the early morning look of the clouds and water at River Front Park.

Calm morning on the riverfrontCalm morning on the riverfront. (Two frame vertical panorama, Infrared, B&W, 34mm eq. fl, 1/40 sec @f/5.6, ISO 200)

The morning light was also nice at Viera Wetlands, and this American Bittern posed for us in the reeds.  I’ve been lucky enough to see them there several times over the years. I’m sure they’re in spots like Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge too, but I’ve never spotted one there.

American BitternAmerican Bittern.  (600mm, f/8, 1/640 sec, ISO 320)

Orlando Wetlands Park opened again February 1st.  It’s one of my favorite places for sunrise.  Our walk on Friday morning  was brisk and breezy, but I like the wind’s effect on the water in this photo.

Wee hour winds whisk water and reeds in the wetlandsWee hour winds whisk water and reeds in the wetlands.  (Two frame vertical panorama; 120mm; I shot the bottom frame at f/22 and ISO 50 to extend the shutter speed to 8 seconds and maximize depth of field.  I made the upper frame at f/8, .5 sec, ISO 100 to maximize sharpness)

So that’s some of what I photographed last week.  What did you shoot?  Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog. Now – go make some photos!

©2015, Ed Rosack. All rights reserved.

My favorite 2014 photos

Happy New Year!  I hope that all of you, your families, and your friends have had a joyful and happy holiday season!

The beginning of the year is a good time to review results and contemplate how to improve any endeavor and photography is no exception.  I’ve put together these “Favorite photos of the year” posts since 2009.  This is a hard process for any photographer.  For me, it’s difficult to separate my opinion about a photograph from the emotional connections that I have with the subject, scene, or situation.  But making the effort is important and part of the learning process.  I don’t claim to be objective –  these are simply the photos that I like best.  Feel free to disagree, but I hope you’ll enjoy looking at the ones I’ve picked.

This year, all of my favorites were made in Florida.  I’ve listed the date and place for each and included a link to the blog post where you can find out more about the image.  You can click on the photos to go to Flickr where you can see a larger version.  Or you can click on this link to view the complete set on Flickr.

February 2, 2014 – Cocoa Beach

Let's wait a bit to set sailLet’s wait a bit to set sail

More info:  edrosack.com/2014/02/08/viera-wetlands-222014/

March 8, 2014 – Viera Wetlands

Black Skimmer in flightBlack Skimmer in flight 

More info:  edrosack.com/2014/03/09/universal-set-up/

April 6, 2014 – Marineland Beach

99 seconds in the dark99 seconds in the dark

More info:  edrosack.com/2014/04/12/lessons-from-a-photogen…

May 17, 2014 – Viera Wetlands

Marsh MoonMarsh Moon

More info:  edrosack.com/2014/02/08/viera-wetlands-222014/

May 31, 2014 – Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge

Preening SpoonbillsPreening Spoonbills

More info:  edrosack.com/2014/06/07/merritt-island-may-31-2…

June 18 2014 – Fort Christmas

Wild OrchidsWild Orchids

More info:  edrosack.com/2014/12/13/modern-monochrome-homew…

July 19, 2014 – St. Johns River, Near Cocoa

Let's go fishing!Let’s go fishing!

More info: edrosack.com/2014/08/01/lets-go-fishing-how-i-m…

July 19, 2014 – Viera Wetlands

Wet wings and itchy backWet wings and itchy back

More info:  edrosack.com/2014/07/25/viera-wetlands-on-7-19-…

November 2, 2014 – Lake Louisa State Park

Morning mist - ColorMorning mist

More info:  edrosack.com/2014/11/09/lake-louisa-state-park-…

November 19, 2014 – Barberville Pioneer Settlement

The SchoolroomThe Schoolroom

More info:  edrosack.com/2014/11/30/pioneer-settlement-at-b…

These links will take you to Flickr where you can view sets of my favorite photos from earlier years: 200920102011, and 2012, and 2013.

I hope you’ve had a great photo 2014 too. If you send me a link or leave one in the comments, I’ll be sure to take a look at your favorites.  Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog.  Now – go make some more favorites of your own!
©2011 – 2014, Ed Rosack. All rights reserved

Lake Louisa State Park – Nov. 1, 2014

Lynn and I went back to Lake Louisa State Park last weekend and spent a very relaxing couple of days.  It was a little chilly – our first Florida “cold” front rolled through while we were there and made us both appreciate the gas fireplace in the cabin.  We didn’t see as much wildlife this time, but I did enjoy making some photos.  Here’s one at sunset from just behind the cabin, looking out over Lake Dixie.  I like the way the field glows in the light coming through the trees.

Grass, trees, lake, and sun
Grass, trees, lake, and sun

The sky was very clear after the cold front, so there were no dramatic clouds to work with.  I think the low morning sun on the trees and the mist on the water  look nice in black and white.

Morning mist - B&W
Morning mist

There weren’t as many flowers blooming as there were last May.  But the few we did see were lovely.  These were along a path just off the road.

Wildflowers
Wildflowers

Lake Louisa is a wonderful, relaxing getaway in Clermont, Florida – very close to Orlando.  If you haven’t been, check it out.  My full writeup on the park is at this link and this set on Flickr has many more photos I made there.

Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog. Now, go make some photos!

©2014, Ed Rosack. All rights reserved.

Orlando Wetlands and B&W Conversion Software

Here are three photos I made at Orlando Wetlands Park last Thursday morning.

Waiting for sunrise at Lake Searcy
Waiting for sunrise at Lake Searcy

My favorite program for converting images to black and white is the Nik Silver Efex Pro plug-in.  I wanted to try a new one called “Tonality” by Macphun software.  I processed these next two photos in both programs so I could compare results.

Cypress and calm water
Cypress and calm water

Clear and very calm
Clear and very calm

Tonality is an exceptionally complete B&W conversion program with lots of presets and sliders to play with.  It also has some built-in capabilities you might not expect such as layers, gradients, and selective edits.  These come in handy when you want to combine several conversions without going through layers in Photoshop.  Silver Efex Pro’s control points provide some of the same selective edit capability, but for me, the Tonality controls are more flexible.  Tonality also has lens blur and glow simulations  and the ability to blend in texture patterns.  Lots of presets, options, and control!

I noticed that the clarity control in Tonality sometimes resulted in halos that I has to tone down.  But I found that overall I preferred the Tonality result over the Silver Efex version for these two photos.  I don’t know if this will hold up long-term, since I’m pretty sure you can achieve very similar results with either one.  I’m going to keep playing with it and see.

By the way, Tonality is Mac only, Silver Efex runs on both Mac and PC.   There are free trial versions you can download, so check them out yourself and see what you think.

Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog. Now – go make some photos!
©2014, Ed Rosack. All rights reserved.

Acadia National Park, bonus photo

Tranquility at Bubble Pond

Tranquility at Bubble Pond.  This is a two frame, hand merged image.  ISO 100, f/16, 1/10 sec, 16mm, using a polarizing filter.

Hello everyone,

Apparently, my web server glitched and didn’t send emails to the subscriber list when I posted the new entry about Acadia National Park earlier today (Sunday, 17 August, 2014).  If you’d like to read it, please go to this address in your web browser:  http://edrosack.com/2014/08/17/acadia-national-park-maine/

Sorry for the inconvenience.