Monthly Archives: September 2009

Storm Victim…

Well. Seems like the storm the other night got another victim. It happens more often than you think when you leave your computer on all night without the benefit a UPS (Uninterupted Power Supply). Powerstrips don’t always protect as they should and hard drives can still be damaged by not being shut down properly.

DSC_8921-EditImage Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art

I tried everything with this one. Once it was determined the system would not boot, I reformatted it and ran some other tools on it. It appeared to start working, however errors started occuring – data got screwey – and more bad sectors turned up.

I couldn’t trust it with data anymore so now I have this beautiful shiny hard drive, paperweight – actually I thought that “Lady Geeks” could use it as a make up mirror because it’s so clear.

I wonder if a craftsman could make me a “Geek Clock” or something like that. I already blogged about the magnet (the brass colored section in the lower left of the hard drive) that is very strong.

For now I’ll just pose the hard disk on my desk and record its image for posterity.

Peace, Love, and Rest In Digital Peace,



I’m not a big fan of lightning. It’s powerful. It’s fun to watch from the safety of indoors (unless of course it blows up the transformer across the street, then it gets more on the frightening side).

I searched the internet to find out how to photograph this wonder and decided to try it. The storm was so bad there was lightning every 10 seconds or so, therefor there was no question as to where to point to the camera.

Image Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art

The advice I found on the internet was to use a tripod and your camer’s ‘bulb’ setting. The bulb setting allows you to hold the shutter open until you release it. So I set my camera in full manual mode, selected an f stop of f/11, ISO 200, and the shutter speed to ‘bulb’.

Then point the camera in the general direction you think it’s going to happen and simply press the shutter (I wasn’t worried about camera shake because it was dark) and hold it open until you see the flash.  It’s not recommended to keep it open for longer than 2 minutes.  If nothing happens in that amount of time then close the shutter – and try another shot.  The above shot was ISO 200 / f/11 / and only 2 seconds.  There was alot of lightning.

Other considerations are water. I was under the porch (Literally cowering under the porch…ha-ha) or you could use plastic to sheild your equipment from the rain. Or if you’re lucky, it’s not raining (yet).  The number one thing to also consider is SAFETY.  Please be safe because lightning is dangerous and you don’t want to be out in it with expensive camera equipment.  I did, after all, run back inside as soon as this shot was taken.

Now that I have my first ever shot of lightning I guess I have to work on putting that beautiful scenery behind it like all of those famous photographers actually get.  I’m getting better and loving the experience and lessons learned.

I hope this helps with your photography experience and if you get a chance stop by Barrett Photo Art and poke around if you like. I try to keep my best work there.

Thanks for stopping by and God Bless.

Peace, Love, and ‘There’s the Ka-Boom!”, (vague Marvin the Martian reference)


Cloud Prism…

I have never seen anything like this before but I suppose it has something to do with the way Rainbows are made. The cloud layer above these storm clouds started changing colors.

Cloud Prism 1Image Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art

It was really awe inspiring and kept me standing on the porch for a very long time.  I found one place on the internet that referred to the effect as a “Sun Dog”.   But other than that I have not yet found any other information on the phenomena.  I’ll keep looking though.

Cloud Prism 2Image Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art

The world continues to amaze me the more that I look around.  So much to do and see.  It seems that a lifetime isn’t enough time to do it all.

Thank you for visiting me here.   This remains a work a progress.

Peace, Love, and Look Up Once in Awhile,


Panning Your Subject…

While panning your ‘fast-moving’ subject it’s sometimes important to pay attention to what’s happening in the background before releasing the shutter for that ‘perfect’ shot.

DSC_7246Image Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art

I got the shot I wanted later. I guess I’m glad that digital came along because film would get expensive during my ‘trial and error’ learning spree.


Image Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art

Thank you for visiting here. I appreciate the company.

Peace, Love, and Fly-By Shooting,


Mail Delivery…

I rather miss the old Jeeps that the post office uses. I believe they still use them in the rural areas but not so much in the cities anymore.

Jeep1 Image Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art

The Jeep is so distinctive and not only does it remind me of the post office but my Army days as well. They’re tough little vehicles.

Jeep 2Image Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art

The jeep is one tough little vehicle.  Maybe I’ll restore one some day. So much I want  to do.  Pilot’s license, restore an old car, photograph the world, build another computer. I’ll get a “Round – 2 – It”.

Peace, Love, and Mail Call,


Peer Pressure…

I remember when I was young and how sometimes my mouth would override my abilities. I was taken down memory lane here recently when I watched as my grandson told a lovely little girl how he could make it across the monkey bars.

He had not taken in to account his physical limitations as he had already traversed the bars several times before. But THIS time would be the one to impress the ladies. The trip that counted. The one that mattered as it would win hearts.

Peer PressureImage Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art

I was there to photograph the event and I knew what he was feeling (by the look on his face)  as his arms began to give out while his friend looked on.

He quietly asked for help getting down, however, he was not embarrassed at all.   He simply explained that he had done it so many times that he was tired but would be back to show the little girl he could do it once the cramps left his arms.

When you’re tired, keep going.  If you fail, try again.  But do it for yourself – she’ll still like you weather you make it across the monkey bars or not.

Thanks for visiting.

Peace, Love, and I Can Do That,


Central Texas Rain…

I’m so glad it rained. There is so much to see and do after a heavy downpour (other than dry off). I noticed my grandson’s bicycle had fallen over in the storm.

Bike ShadowImage Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art

Now you may be thinking that’s a shadow under the bicycle but it looks like God decided to draw on my porch.

Bike ShadowImage Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art

There on the pavement was the perfect outline of the bicycle like Peter Pan’s lost shadow.

Well, after being facinated by the outline on the porch we decided to go to San Gabriel Park to see what all the rain had done and sure enough the river now has water in it!

As you can see by this photo the San Gabriel bridge is coming along nicely — and you can also see why they are building it as illustrated by the vehicle crossing the low water crossing.

Low Water CrossingImage Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art

The fishing was also fabulous down at the river after a storm.  The carp was released and allowed to fight another day though.

FishingImage Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art

Well, it’s time to go get some fixin’s and get something to eat after being wet for a day or two. Enjoy your day and your family and thanks for reading my musings.

Peace, Love, and Running Rivers,


Moon Tips…

I don’t get asked alot of questions but I found the answer to a common question by Googling it. The question was “How do you photograph the moon?”.

Image © Copyright 2009, Barrett Photo Art

The thing to remember is that the moon is reflecting the sun’s light and is bright. Most cameras on auto have a habit of exposing just for the light (over exposing) giving you a white, featureless, disk.

Image © Copyright 2009, Barrett Photo Art

The secret to exposing for the moon is to do it manually.  Place the camera in “Manual” mode and I usually shoot in the neighborhood 1/200 of a second at f/8 -16 depending on the time of evening.

Image © Copyright 2009, Barrett Photo Art

A tripod is a must. Believe it or not the moon is moving. (doh!). The first two photographs I used a 300mm lens. The last photograph was taken at 1/250th of a second, f/8, and a 900mm (Phoenix) lens. You can generally get great photos with the ISO set to 200-400.

The beauty of digital photography these days is that you get immediate results.  If  your shot doesn’t come out you can change a setting.  (Faster or slower shutter speed or increase/decrease the f/stop).  No waisted rolls there. *wink*.

I hope you enjoyed this little lesson and have some fun taking planetary photographs. I’m off to shop and dream for more camera stuff.

Peace, Love, and Green Cheese,


Old Buildings…

I love old buildings and small towns. It makes me wonder what it must have been like way back in the day when the town was growing up.

Lockhart 1
Image Copyright © 2009,  Barrett Photo Art

Downtown Lockhart, Texas is a good example. There are alot of wonderful places to explore in that town. I think a great thing to do is to stop in a small town and go exploring.


Lockhart 2
Image Copyright © 2009,  Barrett Photo Art

You never know what you will find around the corner. The alley ways are interesting. Faded signs and relics of a day gone by.  History come to life.

Peace, Love, and Treasure Hunt,


Photo -a- Day…

You know sometimes it’s hard to do a photo a day come to think of it. But I will get better as time goes along. I almost always have my camera with me but I’ve found that when I “TRY” to take a good photograph that it sometimes just doesn’t happen.

New Old Church
Image Copyright © 2009  Barrett Photo Art

I did notice this little chapel while picking up my daughter and slowed enough to take a couple of photographs. At first I thought it was an ‘old’ chapel until I noticed the sign out front indicating it was St Catherine’s Chapel Est. 2008.

I gave it the old photoshop ‘make it look old’ treatment and I guess it came out alright. I think it’s rather unique in apearance. Enjoy while I regroup as I’m still on the Job Hunting trail and will write/post again soon.

Peace, Love, and Country Drives,


Hard Drives…

Did ya notice that once a hard drive goes bad there is not much you can do with it. Well… I decided to imortalize this one as it was such a good servant. (Backed up of course).

Hard Drive Tree
Image Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art.

Well it appears that the little fella (SATA Laptop 250 gig hard drive) decided he would rather take it easy. Lay around. Copy half the data…lose the rest. More or less take a vacation.

Hard Drive Reflect
 Image Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art.

I guess he started reflecting on the greener things in life and thought it would be great to be on the outside instead of screwed in to an overheating laptop.

The Platen on a hard drive is incredibly shiney and the camera at first didn’t know what to focus on.

Hard Drive RocksImage Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art.

Well. The hard drive is either visiting the Hard Rock Cafe or is officially on the rocks because the little guy wouldn’t format anymore.  (Oh yeah, of course it won’t format NOW – but it wouldn’t while it was installed in the laptop..just so you know).

They make nice refrigerator magnets though.  Some regualar size hard drives the magnet can hold everything your child did during the school year to your refrigerator door.

Peace, Love, and Don’t Forget to Backup,


Drought Continues…

Well the drought continues with water restrictions in place. The good news being that the water usage has dropped 23%.I thought I’d try and take a photograph a day and update the blog just to see what I could do. Enjoy!

Image Copyright © 2009, Barrett Photo Art

Peace, Love, and Earth Tones,