Critique Connie's (Clix Pix) 52 Week Project 2020 ------ AND IT'S A WRAP!!!! 53 WEEKS DONE!!!!

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Week 43 turned out to be a little different, although I did get a shot of Alfred and another shot of the willow tree across the lake. I needed four new tires for my 2006 Acura RSX.....so went out and got four new tires, but, hey, surprise, they're attached to a lovely new 2021 Honda Civic Sport Hatchback! :D She's Polished Metal Metallic (medium grey with a bit of sparkle -- actually, about the same color as my Apple Space Grey MBP!) and she's gorgeous! It has been fifteen years since I last bought a car and the technical advances are absolutely astounding -- this car is smarter than I am! LOL! She also makes for a lovely subject to photograph, and I have been having so much fun shooting her exterior -- haven't gotten to shooting the interior yet.

The willow tree across the lake caught my attention with its interesting colors as it shifts into wintertime coloration, and the way it reflected in the water:

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I like the way this came out, with the hints of color:

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This car is highly reflective and shiny in her newness and her antenna fascinates me:

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In the depths, amazing stopping-power:

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Even the various lights and reflectors are intriguing:


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Look at her sassy, sporty rear end!

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The theme this week seems to be all about "grey," and even the one photo of Alfred I got fits right in, as we had a couple of very foggy mornings.....On one of them I was surprised to see Alfred perched on the railing of the deck of the community clubhouse next door:

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Congratulations on the new car!! It looks beautiful. We've had two Hondas and both were very good cars. Your photos of it are so nice!!
 
Joined
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Messages
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Location
Idaho
Huh......no comments on Week 43? I guess people were too busy with other projects to take a look.....

Anyway, Week 44 is now available for public consumption! A little of this, a little of that, as I was busier than usual and also the weather was not always that cooperative.

On one of the nice days I was abla to capture interesting reflections again:

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One thing I love about Autumn is the brilliant leaves that drift down from the trees:

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Still having fun with my new car, and I decided that the key fob would make an interesting subject:

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Messing around with abstracts again:

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I was tickled silly to look out the window one afternoon and there they were at last -- the Hooded Mergansers have returned to the lake! I am hoping that they will do as they have the past couple of years and hang around here all winter, then if they follow their usual pattern, they'll migrate elsewhere some time in April.

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While I was out on the deck with the camera admiring the Mergansers, I heard a loud flapping noise, looked around and saw that one of the cormorants was busily flapping his wings and making a commotion to impress the new arrivals on the lake -- LOL!

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Last, but not least, I wrapped up the week with an appropriate image for Hallowe'en:

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Again, such an interesting, diverse set of photos. My favorite is the first one with the reflections. The Halloween image is also very creative!!
 
Thank you both for your comments! ;).

Yes, I love my new Honda Civc Sport Hatchback! I've driven Hondas in the past and then moved to Acuras (made by Honda) and now am back in a Honda again. The thing that really disconcerted me at first, though, is that there have been so many changes technologically speaking, over the past fifteen years, so, yeah, there has been a bit of a learning curve! The manual is always handy, though, in .pdf format on my computers and iPads and iPhones.... (now what was that I was saying about changes in technology over the past fifteen years?!!!)

Last week I was so busy with driving and still learning about the new car that I didn't shoot nearly as much as I normally do, and was actually relieved to see that I still had at least a few decent images to share when the end of the week came around. Happily, so far I'm not running out of steam on this project, which I am finding to be a good thing, an encouraging thing, since the one year that I had attempted a photo-of-the-day project it did indeed rather suddenly come to a halt when one day I said, "I can't do this any more!" and that was the end of that project, mid-October of that year. I was totally burned out. Didn't pick up the camera again for weeks or maybe it was months....

Based on that earlier experience, I knew that if I had attempted to do this year's Octoberfest thing here at the Cafe, especially on top of the 52 Weeks project, that it would have resulted in a lot of frustration on my part, adding stress where I didn't really need to add stress, and so skipped that, although it did look like fun for those who participated.

I'm finding that the 52 Weeks project offers me more flexibility so that on those days when I am not inspired or really don't have time to shoot for whatever reason, no big deal, as maybe the next day or the day after I'll have more time to spend with the camera. Also I find that having the iPhone and the RX10 easily at hand helps, too, so that sometimes I see something and don't have time to reach into the armoire for the A7R IV and a lens and instead just grab one or the other of the former, both of which I keep sitting out for just this reason, and run out to the deck or wherever to take a shot or two before the interesting subject disappears.

The other thing that does keep me moving with this 52 (actually, it'll be nearly 53) weeks project is striving for a variety of subjects or perhaps the same types of subjects shot in different ways or being lucky enough to catch them doing different, unique activities, as that is much more interesting to me and I hope to anyone who views my images. I would quickly become bored if I were sooting the same subject(s) or always using the same style over and over again. I also am appreciating that I do have a modest, but very nice selection of lenses which enable me to shoot from different focal lengths, using different apertures, different perspectives, etc., and that helps, too. Earlier this fall I had thought about buying a wide-angle lens, as I do still want and need something in that range to expand my horizons further, but the purchase of the new car has kind of interrupted that process. I figured that the wide-angle lens could wait a while.....I've gone this long without one!
 
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Week 45 seemed to be all about the birds....

The week started out rainy and dreary, but a bright spot for me was seeing Alfred in his favorite perch, and the rain pelting down didn't seem to bother him as he intently peered at the water, watching for prey:

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One of the cormorants discovered the pier, and he spent a couple of days lounging on it, soaking up the sunshine:

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The big news of the week, of course, is the Hooded Mergansers and their return, and I've been enjoying watching them every day, photographing them from the deck (camera and the Bazooka mounted on tripod with Wimberley works just great for this, or sometimes I shoot the 100-400 handheld with 1.4x TC).
This guy, hood down so you can recognize him as a duck, was in a real hurry!

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The other day I caught one of them in this interesting position:

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Sometimes the light does interesting things on the water, and I decided to get a little experimental both during the shooting and later in the editing process, to create a more dramatic look:

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Not only were the other guys all out on the lake this past week, so were the Canada geese, who paid us a visit a couple of days. There was quite a crowd of them at one point, but I liked this little group which seemed to be sticking together in a congenial way:

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Had enough of the birds? OK, here's a nice twilight scene with a bit of autumn color:

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Week 46 is here! I'm still finding interesting things to shoot, both indoors and outdoors....and getting back into doing more abstract stuff on the tabletop as well. Bought a couple of new things this past week, too: one is the software program called Optics, which has some cool ways to approach the subject differently and also I purchased a set of three handholdable prisms, called "Fractals." Still getting the hang of them, but they produce intriguing results, too.

First up: this past week we had rain several days and again we're having it this afternoon as well, so this is an appropriate lead-off:

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Happily in-between we did have some nice sunny days, too, and on one of them I captured the last of the colorful leaves:

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One of my first experiments with a "Fractals" prism:

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In the meantime on another sunny day the Hooded Mergansers were having a lot of fun chasing each other around. I don't know if they were misled by the warm weather we had that day into thinking it was springtime and time for courting and mating rituals or not, but that's sure how it looked to me!

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Playing with light:

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Experimenting:

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Ring of Fire:

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Oh, and to quote Steve Jobs: "one more thing....."

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Looks like great fun! Love your experimental nature!
Thank you, Urbanflyer! Yes, I have fun seeing what happens when I try this or that, and sometimes the results are quite surprising. I may start out with, "OK, I think I'll photograph this object today...." and by the time I'm finished, I've shot it in various ways, from various perspectives, sometimes with more than one lens, and sometimes using extras like the handheld prism gizmos. Sometimes the extras also become subjects as well..... This is what I love about photography, a way to zone out and to explore things, taking advantage of my natural curiosity, and discovering from time to time that there is some creativity lurking within! I really like making the ordinary look extraordinary.....

Thank you, Terri! It's interesting to me how each week different shooting opportunities crop up and when I think I might have exhausted a particular subject a new way of capturing it comes along..... I was surprised to see Alfred out there in the rain that day and knew I had to capture that! The evening I looked out and saw that brilliant orange-and-yellow coloring of the trees behind the condo building reflected in the water I knew I had to grab the camera, and quickly. I am rather pleased with how that came out, too.

With the weather starting to become colder, this coming week will bring on new and different opportunities, undoubtedly, and probably as the winter advances I'll be spending more time indoors and doing more shooting of abstracts and such.... Hopefully from time to time Alfred will come back up to this section of the lake, along with Morrey the Cormorant and the Hooded Mergansers, so that I can get some interesting shots from my deck, too!
 
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Here we go with Week 47! Kind of a variety this time, with more experiments along the way.....

Had a lot of fun with this one:

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One nice day I captured the interesting patterns made by reflections on the lake:

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Experimenting again:

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One sunny afternoon I saw these guys hanging out together on the lake:

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Another experiment:

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This little guy was in a hurry, but when he arrived in the patch of blue, I captured that:

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A burst of color:

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Yesterday marked a year since I had bought my new gear, and so I celebrated by shooting with my beloved 90mm macro:

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The year is winding down, as we see by the fact that today I'm sharing the results of Week 48. Wow!!! Another mixed bag again....

For some reason, lots of autumn yellow this week, starting with this flower in high-key lighting:

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A pair of geese found a spot to relax near the willow tree:

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Playing with Slinkies again:

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Autumn flowers have their own special appeal:

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Another pair of geese on the lake were a little livelier. This image is noteworthy, too, because I shot it with the RX10 and its 1-inch sensor. The original version of this image has the subjects somewhat further away and there is only so much one can do vis-a-vis cropping with a lens with such a tiny sensor. Ah, enter Topaz Gigapixel!!! I experimented with it, followed by Topaz Sharpen AI and was rather surprised and pleased with the results.

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More experimentation on a chilly day when I didn't want to go outdoors:

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One afternoon spotted a few Hooded Mergansers across the lake, and although I experimented with Topaz Gigapixel and Topaz Sharpen on another image of this same duck, this one I left as originally shot and edited because I like the colors of the water in which the little guy is swimming......

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There are still a few leaves stubbornly hanging on to their branches, especially near the water:

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WEEK 49, it's December and we're in the home stretch, folks!

Kicking off the series, one of our resident geese on a lovely sunny morning when the water was calm:

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Lots of indoor shooting this past week, more experiments with abstracts, light and color (or lack thereof):

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Had fun one afternoon experimenting with colors and shapes:

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Another afternoon was spent playing with marbles for Mike Buckley's CS "Games People Play" theme this week:

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Another day I was trying something else a bit different:

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I really had fun with my Lens Ball and those marbles!

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Another abstract image:

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'Tis pinecone season and I decided to get upclose and personal with one:

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Thanks, Urbanflyer! I love being retired -- I can do pretty much as I like when I like and where I like..... That said, of course since the beginning of the pandemic I've certainly stayed at home much, much more than I normally would do, but I've managed to find plenty here to keep me busy, both photographically and otherwise!
 
Thank you, Terri! When looking back to the beginning of this project, it is interesting to see the progression of images as I was at first still finding my way with what was then still new gear, plus trying to find something interesting to shoot during the cold winter months, etc......then moving on into the spring and warmer months which of course were affected by the pandemic so that I didn't go out-and-about to other interesting places around here the way I would normally have done. I was fortunate to have such a scenic environment right here outside my own front door so that regardless of the pandemic at least I could get outdoors and shoot interesting subjects, primarily wildlife. My subject matter definitely varies with the seasons. Now here we are again heading into the winter months so my creative juices will have to work overtime!!

I seem to be hooked on this project, though, so am already thinking ahead and planning to indeed do a 52 Weeks project for 2021 as well.....
 

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