Friday, November 30, 2012


This morning I sat watching the bird feeders waiting for the Mountain Quail to arrive. The rain was pouring down and the Steller's Jays were making regular trips to the feeders. After a long wait (when isn't it?)the quail showed up.They wouldn't go up onto the perch I had set up so I was forced to zoom in and create a portrait image. That topnotch feather is a little droopy from the rain don't you think? God bless you all, chris

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Perfect Day for a Bowl of Soup

Today has been gray, blustery and rainy all day long. Perfect for sitting by the woodstove with a bowl of Minestrone Soup. Nuff said. God's love and blessings to all, chris

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Stuck Inside

Today the rain poured down for most of the day as promised by the National Weather service. I stayed inside and edited some images. Later on in the morning I sat in the back bedroom and photographed some of the natives coming to the backyard bird feeders.The only bird of some interest was a Red Breasted Nuthatch. While waiting at one point I photographed a vase of flowers on the windowsill.Time to get back to work on my book. God's precious love to all, chris

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Last of the Fall Color Blue Jays

Tonight the wind is beating against the house and a storm is pouring in off of the Pacific. It looks like we are going to be in for rain for the next three or four days. I'm looking forward to seeing the salmon spawning in the local creeks. In talking to some of my friends they are already going up many of the creeks. The rains will allow many more of them to push further up into some of the smaller waterways. This morning the storm forced me out of the photoblind and into the house. In reviewing my images from this morning I did manage to capture another Steller's Jay image to add to my collection. This will be the last Steller's with fall colors as I have far too many of them already. Today I changed all of my feeders and perches around so the fall colors won't be included in the background anymore until next year. Now if some different birds would come in! God's precious love to all, chris

The Weather Outside is Frightful

I awoke this morning to the patter of rain showers on the rooftop. By the time I finished dressing it had stopped. When I peeked my head out the window all I could see was dark gray skies and hear the sound of the wind through the redwoods. Not exactly the best day for bird photography.Why give it a go and try out my new perch set up I thought to myself. So I bundled myself up and trundled out to the photoblind. It turned out not to be the best idea in the world. I lasted about a half an hour between holding onto my tripod and grabbing the blind to keep it from being blown over. It really wasn't worth it. I came back inside and looked into one of my idea books for some indoor photography. I found a simple stock photo idea for cheese to photograph. When I was done photographing it I went back outside and reconfigured all of my perch set ups so I could photograph from the warmth of the house through a window. God's love and blessings to everyone, chris

Monday, November 26, 2012

Crawling Around on the Forest Floor

To effectively photograph fungi you have to get down to the level where it grows. This means getting down and dirty onto the forest floor.You know crawling around with your camera down into the forest duff. This afternoon I photographed a few species of fungi in our front yard. With the rains it's amazing how many species start popping up just off of our driveway. I had a good time and now it is time for a shower. God's love and blessings to all, chris

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Touch of Rainy Weather

The past four days have had weather to stay inside and sit by the fire. We ventured out a few times to buy groceries and what not but mostly we have stayed indoors. It has given me some time to edit images and just look out on the changing shades of gray with fleeting glimpses of the valley below. Here is the view today of the Madrone Tree outside my office window today plus a few Chipmunk images that were taken last week before the rain started in earnest. God's light and love to all, chris Click on the images to see them in a larger size on your screen!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Killer Steller's Jay Image!

Yesterday afternoon and the evening were spent going through and editing the rest of the images from yesterday's photography expedition to the backyard photoblind. I came across quite a few more great images. My favorite though was this image of a Steller's Jay. It is really sharp and I love the composition and the eye contact. A really nice image. God's precious love to all, chris

Friday, November 16, 2012

Faces of Fall

As I have noted before once we get into late fall I am extremely limited in what I can photograph at my bird feeders.Today I decided to challenge myself to see if I could photograph all of the species of regular visitors to my feeders.I went out into the backyard,restocked the bird feeders and climbed into the photoblind and waited. There must have been a hawk up in the trees because there was absolutely nothing coming into the bird feeders. After about a half an hour I was surpized to see a Chipmink as the first victim er creature to come out and want to be photographed. Next and probably the easiest on my list were the Dark eyed Junco and a Steller's Jay.They were easy because there were so many of them. After that I worked on the most difficult image of all the Red Breasted Nuthatch. Because it was dark and cloudy out I was forced to use a pretty slow shutter speed and nuthatches pretty much never stop moving. I solved it by looking for a place they always landed and prefocused on that spot and just waited. I had tons of blurry nuthatch images by the time I was done!But I got a nice nuthatch image for all of my patience. After that I photographed an image of a Chestnut Backed Chickadee. I thought the squirrels were going to be the easiest today because yesterday they were all over the place. Today I waited and waited and finally a Western Gray Squiirel and a couple of Douglas Tree Squirrels came at the very end when it was starting to rain.It was a fun little personal challenge and i hope you like the images. My favorite image of course was the Douglas tree Squirrel. They are so darn cute. God's love and blessings, chris

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Tis' the Season

It is indeed the season! Now that the rains have come the "Fungi Season" has begun and will probably continue well into late spring and early summer.I have started to see more and more fungi beginning to push themselves up through the forest duff and leaves lately. Here is one that popped up next to a Redwood tree close to our road yesterday afternoon. I loved how it stood out from the dark forest floor. Love and blessings from God to all of you, chris

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Splash of Color

Today was one of those days where I got a lot done but not necessarily on the things I needed too. Over the past week I have been spotting the Mountain Quail covey in my backyard. As many of you know I am determined to capture a excellent image of one.Today with that in mind I sat in the photoblind for about an hour early this morning and then later on sat in the blind for about two hours in the afternoon. During all that time I didn't hear or see any quail. I did manage to add many images to my abundant collection of Western Gray and Douglas Tree Squirrel collection. OH MY! I gave up around three o'clock and went in search of something different. I walked down to the end of our road and back. On the return trip a splash of color caught my eye.There was a Bracken Fern illuminated by the late afternoon sun and just glowing with possibilities. I photographed it from several angles before I found the best one. The problem with the best one was that there was a branch from a bush blocking it. I solved that problem by setting the timer on my camera and running over to the bush and pulling the branch out of the way when the shutter released. After a few laps back and forth I had an image I really liked.The quail can wait for another day. God's love and blessings, chris

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Just Around the Bend

Today I awoke to the sound of rain on the roof top. Later the rain stopped but our ridge top stayed fogged in all day until late in the afternoon. Just a little after four the sun burst through the fog in rays of Angel's Breath.It was incredible! I ran downstairs and grabbed my camera and quickly walked down our road to find a good spot to photograph it. By the time I had reached the first bend in the road the clouds had moved back in and blocked out the sun.Drat! I looked back up the road towards our house and caught the last bit of very faint light on the tree trunks through the fog. Hopefully tomorrow will be a little sunnier. God's love and blessings to all, chris

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Great Run of Chinook Salmon

On Friday while I was out photographing the fall colors I did a quick check on the Chinook Salmon run in the Eel River. I only watched them for about a half of an hour. I was really impressed by the number of salmon I saw spawning in the shallow riffles of the river. The females were digging reds (nests) by turning sideways and digging up the gravel by flapping their tails. There was a lot of pushing and shoving for nest sites. The males were pushing each other around to see who would get to fertilize the eggs. A beautiful sight to behold since the numbers of salmon have been down for so many years. I read recently that this may be the biggest salmon run that anyone can remember.I look forward to the creeks rising and seeing some salmon soon closer to where I live! God's love and blessings to all, chris

Friday, November 9, 2012

My Annual Fall Color Tour

Just about every year I make my own personal fall color tour through part of Mendocino County.I drive up over Red Hill into the Rock Tree Valley. I ford Tomki Creek and then drive out Hearst Road to the bridge on the Eel River at Emandahl. Then I backtrack to Tomki Road and the come up over Berry Canyon Road and back to Willits. Today was no disappointment as the fall colors were the best that I have seen in many years. It was just beautiful. The sky was cloudy and it was mixed with high fog that gave the leaves a rich saturated coloring. I had a wonderful drive and made it back just in time to have a quick lunch with Lenore. God's precious light and love to everyone, chris

Thursday, November 8, 2012

I'm Stumped

Today has been a mix of mostly rain and sleet with doses of sunshine mixed in for good measure. I got cabin fever this afternoon and just had to get out. I walked down our road and photographed a mossy stump. Later on I took Annika to Ukiah for an appointment and we spotted a rainbow on the return trip home. God's love and blessings to all, chris