Tag Archive: waterfalls

As some of you may already know, I currently have some of my photos hanging in a gallery in Kingston, NY.  I received word yesterday that next Saturday will be the gallery reception.

I would like to invite you all to come to Barista’s Espresso Cafe in the Hudson Valley mall on June 26th to view the work Angela and I have on display.  Angela is the co-organizer of my photo group, and a good friend.

For those of you in Albany, I know it is quite a hike to Kingston (about 45 minutes), but I would love to see you there if you can make it.  It would mean a lot to me.  The event is open to the public and children are welcome.

Place: Barista’s Espresso Cafe1300 Ulster Avenue Kingston, NY

Date: June 26

Time: 4-7pm

If you need directions, please do not hesitate to leave a message here or shoot me an email if you have my email address.  I hope to see you there!  See ya soon!

Marketing yourself

For the last few years, I have really wanted to start marketing my photography.  For one reason or another, I just haven’t been able to get it up and running.  So, I turn to you for a little feedback.  Here are some questions I have.

What site(s) do you use to market your products? – I have heard of sites like Etsy and Wozofoto.  I am sure there are others, but I am drawing a blank.  I am looking for a site that will let me sell my prints, but not kill me with fees.

What should I avoid? – Are there sites out there that are scams?  Are there signs I should look for?

Marketing techniques – What is the most common, affordable method of getting the word out that you are selling online?

Any help I can get will be greatly appreciated.  I really want to make a go of this.  See ya soon.

With the first day of summer just about two weeks away, I start to think of why it is my favorite time of year.  I think the warm weather is a bit of a given, but I have a few other reasons why I love it.

The Pool – I’ve been a water rat since I was a toddler.  I also lived close to the ocean in Virginia growing up.  So, I have spent many hours of my life in the water.  I’ve also been pulled out of the pool (over the side) because I couldn’t breathe more times than I care to remember.  That has not stopped me from going back in.  To this day, I still will spent a good portion of the day in the pool.  I love it!

The Grill – I love cooking on the grill.  I do it all year long, but it’s much more pleasant when it isn’t below freezing outside.  This morning I made bacon in a frying pan on the side burner of the grill.  I like to make it outside so it doesn’t smell up the house.  It doesn’t matter if it’s hot dogs or steak, I love cooking out there.  Plus the grill overlooks the pool.  Bonus!

Motorcycles – Riding is a huge passion of mine.  I still do it in some of the colder months, but like other things, it’s much more enjoyable when it’s warm outside.  Being on a motorcycle is such an amazing feeling.  It’s so relaxing.  It also will make you forget all your problems for a while.  Great for clearing your head.

Friends – This one sort of ties into all of the others.  Summer to me is about hanging out with your friends, having a cookout, swimming in the pool and riding.  There’s something about the camaraderie of bikers that makes you proud to be a part of that family.  I’ve met some of the best people while riding or talking about motorcycles.

Photography – This is also a given.  I do have a photography blog and a Photo Group.  The sun, the flowers, nature, cars and waterfalls all make me very happy when I get out with the camera in my hands.  There are a lot of places that I want to shoot this year.  Hopefully this nice weather (well, before this weekend) will continue and I can check more places off my list.

What about summertime makes you happy?

I spent the Saturday yesterday shooting waterfalls and chasing storms.  I found a small set of falls in the town of Berne, about 30 minutes from Albany.  I was a little weary leaving to go there, as it was raining on and off.  Just to be on the safe side, I brought another set of clothes, a bucket hat and a second waterproof jacket. The sun came out just as I was getting to the falls.  At one point while shooting the falls, however, it started pouring.  I was under some trees at the time, so I wasn’t getting very wet at all.

I took off the bucket hat and put it over the camera so I could keep it dry until I got to the car and grab the waterproof jacket.  Once I had the jacket, I put it over my head and the camera, looking sort of like the really old 1800s cameras where the photographer went under the curtain and took the picture.  I am sure that if anyone saw me doing it, they were probably thinking I was a little crazy.  Boy, are they wrong.  I am a lot crazy!

Here are a couple pictures I got at the falls…

Later that day, I ended up in Thacher Park a few times as I was exploring back roads and finding out where they went. It was a great deal of fun!  On my last trip to Thacher Park, I saw an amazing scene. The storm had moved past the mountain and was now over the valley and passing the city of Albany. There were these huge puffy white clouds and then some darker sky off in the distance.  So, I decided to try a panorama shot.  When I got out of the car, I had no idea I was going to do a pano, so I had no tripod.  I just did it handheld instead.  I am including the original and the Topaz versions so you can see the difference.

What do you think?  See ya soon!

As Spring becomes more prevalent in the air, the trees begin to form buds and eventually the grow out into what you see here – beautiful, colorful leaves.  A few days ago, I was wandering around the yard watering some of the seeds I had planted the day before and I notice that the buds were gone.

So, I went inside to grab the camera, as the light was perfect.  It was about 6pm and the sun was making it’s way down into the horizon.  At that time of day you get what we in the photography field like to call “Golden light”.  It is known as the “Golden Hour” because of the beautiful golden light the sun casts on everything.  It is the best time of day to shoot.  Well, sunrise is the other time, but I just don’t get up that damn early.

I couldn’t help but take pictures.  I grabbed a small 50mm lens I found kicking around in some old camera gear and stuck it on the camera.  I had never played with it before, so I was anxious to see what it would do.  It is a low-light lens and I don’t have any other lenses like that, so I had to play with it and see how it works.  It was great!  It gave me a fantastic bokeh effect on all of the pictures I took with it.

As I looked around the tree, I saw groups of leaves growing.  The picture on the right shows a cluster of leaves beginning to grow on the tree.  Everywhere you looked there were more and more clusters.  It makes me smile to see things starting to bloom again.  As I have stated in the past, the desire to shoot kind of goes away when the leaves fall off the trees and it starts to come back right around this time of year.  It is amazing to see everything come back to life.

The influx of colors and warmth make me want to go out and capture everything I can.  Soon I will be heading to waterfalls and parks to get some colorful shots.  There’s nothing like the smells and the colors to make you want to get out and roam around in the warm sunshine.

What is it about Spring that makes you happy?  Is it getting over the cabin fever?  Walks?  Ice cream?  Tell me why you love Spring.  See you soon!

Ever since I was a child, I have loved water.  Heck, I spent most of my first 18 years in a pool or the ocean.  Over the last few years, I have grown very fond of another source of water, the waterfall.  It blows me away that the water can cut out these amazing formations.  What amazes me even more is the way the water looks when you capture it with a slow shutter speed.  It looks so surreal, almost like it is painted.

Before I knew what slow shutter speed pictures of waterfalls were, I swore they were done that way in Photoshop.  I was absolutely convinced that it was altered in some way.  So, one day, a friend took me down to Ka’aterskill falls and said ‘use these settings and see what happens’.  I took a shot and was instantly hooked!

That afternoon, when I got home, I rushed to the computer.  I couldn’t wait to see those pictures.  I opened them up in Photoshop and couldn’t believe my eyes.  It was like magic!  I kept thinking to myself ‘I did that!  I took that picture’.  I think it took a few days before it set in that I took those pictures and it was incredibly easy.  Since that day, I have made it my mission to photograph as many waterfalls as I can.

Do you know of any waterfalls in the area?  What do you prefer – the slow shutter speed falls or do you like the natural look of the water coming over the falls?  Let me know!  See ya soon!

A few years ago, I met Rose’s cousin Tom when we went down to visit him at his home in Honesdale, PA.  I had never heard of Honesdale, but it was somewhere I had never been, so I was happy to go and check it out.  Honesdale is about 3-3 1/2 hours from here in the Northeast corner of Pennsylvania.  It is a relatively small town of around 5,000 people.  Honesdale is a very quaint town.  I would equate it to a country type setting like Voorheesville or Altamont, except it’s a little bigger and they have a Walmart.

While we were there, I was able to take some shots around Tom’s house up in the rural area and also down in the more populated area of Honesdale. These shots were taken right in his yard.  You can see the natural beauty of the country in them.

The fountain in the front yard

Some flowers in the yard

A dying rose

There was a nice small set of falls there called Carley Brook Falls that I really enjoyed shooting.  They were flowing pretty well that day, and also made for a great subject to shoot.

Carley Brook Falls

As I mentioned in the title, it is a small world.  Months later, I was in my favorite photo forum, Movie Photo Forums, and I met Erin and she had Northeast PA in her signature line.  So, I asked what part of PA she was from and she said Honesdale.  What?  Seriously?  Get the heck out of here!  I mentioned that Rose had a cousin there, thinking she might not know him, and as a matter of fact she did.  She not only knew him, but met up with him almost every Tuesday night as she is a part of the same Harley Owners Group he is, and they ride together.  That blew my mind!

I really hope to get back to Honesdale now that the weather is better in hopes of all of us riding together.  I think it would be a blast!

Have you had something like this happen to you?  Let’s hear about it!

Is nothing sacred?

A lonely tree overhangs the steep drop from the overlook area

A lonely tree overhangs the steep drop from the overlook area

For the last few years, I have been going to John Boyd Thacher Park to see the vast beauty that it holds.  Whether it be for a picnic lunch and a hike down to the falls, or with a bunch of biker buddies wanting a scenic ride, I love Thacher Park.  I would say that I probably venture up there at least a dozen times a year.  I am sure that figure is a little on the low side.

Thacher Park is a great place to visit with family and friends.  There are a ton of places to hike, picnic, or just hang out and look at the amazing views.  I have taken many photos of the area to capture it’s beauty.  No matter what time of year I go up there, there are always quite a few people hanging out and exploring the mountain.

If so many people love the park like I do, why are they trying to shut it down?  Governor Paterson has decided that in order to trim the New York budget, he is planning to close a number of state parks to make up for the budget shortfall.  What a crappy thing to do.  I am very saddened by this decision.

Why the state parks?  In these difficult times, when people don’t have a lot of extra money to spend in ridiculously overpriced them parks, why would you do this?  Find another way.  I costs next to nothing to go to the park for the day.  There are still tons of people out of work that can’t afford expensive trips and vacations, so they stay close to home and share these parks with their children.  It keeps them active as families without breaking the bank.

A few local media outlets have covered this story, and I want to make as many people aware of this as possible.  I am including in this blog the links to those articles so you can have all the information that is out there about this travesty.  There is also a Facebook group that was created to stop this from happening.

It doesn’t look good for my favorite park.  I hope that something will change and they can find the money elsewhere.  Until then, we need to get the word out and sign any petitions to save the park that we can.  According to this Facebook page, there was a protest at the Capital building last week.  I hope it helped.

If you know of any other sites or petitions, please feel free to let me know about them.  Also, let’s keep this civil and not turn it into a nasty political debate.  Save your nasty comments for someone else’s blog.  Here are a few more pictures I have taken at Thacher Park.  See you soon…

The falls

The falls

The stairs

The stairs

The bikes

The bikes

Cohoes Falls

Cohoes falls

A shot of Cohoes falls before the new overlook was built.

Watch that first step

In yesterday’s blog, I mentioned how much I love riding in the Catskill mountains.  Today, I will tell you another reason why I love that area.  I have mentioned my love for waterfalls in the past.  That beautiful road that runs through the mountains also leads you to one of the most amazing scenes.  At the sharp hairpin I discussed yesterday, there is a small waterfall.

Lower falls by the road

Lower falls by the road

Midway to the bigger falls

Midway to the bigger falls

At the bottom falls by the road

At the bottom falls by the road

If you head in to the woods about a mile from there, there is a 260 foot waterfall known as Ka’aterskill Falls.  Up top is a two tiered falls with a “cave” cut out behind the higher falls.  It truly is natural beauty at it’s finest.

The cave

The cave

Gently falling

Gently falling

Almost three years ago, a good friend, Jay Braker took me to Ka’aterskill to do some shooting.  The first time was only to the lower falls.  I thought it was amazing.  On the next trip, he took me in to the main falls.  Since then, I have been back a few times to shoot these magnificent falls.  I can’t thank Jay enough for introducing me to my love for waterfalls.  He also taught me that shooting waterfalls was nowhere near as hard as I thought it would be.  It is rather simple to be honest.  All you really need is a tripod, a long shutter speed and some steady footwork.

Jay Braker in a tree getting the shot

Jay Braker in a tree getting the shot

The sun shines through

The sun shines through

Lower Falls

Lower Falls

I will give you a bit of information about the area.  The walk in to the falls is a mild hike.  However, the climb up to the second tier is pretty treacherous.  The hill is so steep you practically need to hang on to something while walking up to keep from sliding or falling down the hill.  Once you are at the top of that hill, the path around the edge is very narrow, and washed out in places.  A few people have fallen to their death just last year from these trails.  If you go, please be very careful.

Once you get up to the top tier, it is breathtaking.  The top falls come down into a pool, which flows over and creates the bottom falls.  Behind the top falls is this amazing clam-shaped cutout that allows you to walk behind the waterfall.  You can sit there and just watch the water come down right in front of you.  It is incredibly serene.  Jay and I were up there one day and a storm rolled in, so we sat under the overhang and waited the storm out.

Looking down from the top

Looking down from the top - I had to hang over the edge to get this shot.

If you’re looking for a place to go during the summer, and are in the Catskills, I highly recommend this place.  Just make sure you go early, as it is very popular and the parking area get full very quickly.  There is also another access road that will bring you to the very top, and you can look all the way down to the bottom if you’re not too scared!  Wear some comfortable shoes and bring some water!  See ya soon!

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