Tag Archives: canon

Pansy

Friday Flower Fiesta — #9 (March 23, 2012)

Friday Flower Fiesta

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I got into trouble at Walmart today. I stopped to get some Shedd’s Spread after my home inspection. As usual, I always enter and leave through the gardening center. They were particularly well stocked today with some beautiful flowers. I decided to take the Shedd’s Spread to the car, get my Canon 550D, and take a couple of pictures of the columbines and pansies. Turns out that you are not supposed to take pictures inside Walmart. I asked how they monitored all of the smart phones with cameras. No answer. Of course, I had a big, bad, professional DSLR….

Picture 1 — ColumbineColumbine

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Picture 2 — ColumbineColumbine

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Picture 3 — ColumbineColumbine

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Picture 4 — PansyPansy

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Picture 5 — Pansy Pansy

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Picture 6 — Pansy Pansy

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Columbines and pansies are two of my favorite flowers, definitely in my
Top 10. I was surprised to see so many pansies in the garden center since they really are a winter plant here in San Diego.

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

All pictures taken by Russel Ray with a Canon 550D camera and a Canon
55-250mm lens. Post-processing was done in Adobe Photoshop CS6 Beta, and picture framing was done in Corel Draw X6.

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

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Computer Science & Engineering Building at University of California San Diego

Funky architecture at University of California San Diego

Andrea Swiedler, real estate agent with Prudential Connecticut Realty in New Milford, ConnecticutThis post is dedicated to Andrea Swiedler, a real estate agent with Prudential Connecticut Realty in New Milford, Connecticut. I have known Andrea for a few years through a real estate professional networking site. I highly recommend her for anyone needing real estate services in the New Milford, Connecticut, area.

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Out of the five or six hundred college and university campuses that I’ve been to, University of California San Diego (UCSD) ranks as #1 in terms of interesting architecture. I think most college campuses try to maintain a consistent architectural look to their campuses. Not UCSD!

Here are a few of the interesting buildings that I got pictures of yesterday before I ran out of daylight:

Computer Science & Engineering Building at University of California San Diego

Computer Science & Engineering Building at University of California San Diego

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

University of California San Diego

University of California San Diego

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

University of California San Diego

University of California San Diego

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

International House at the University of California San Diego

International House at the University of California San Diego

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

House on a building at the University of California San Diego

House on the School of Engineering building at the University of California San Diego

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Geisel Library through the eucalyptus grove at the University of California San Diego

Geisel Library through the eucalyptus grove at the University of California San Diego

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray PhotosAll pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Recent posts related to the University of California San Diego:
» The Geisel Library at the University of California San Diego
» The Sun God of the University of California San Diego
» A challenge to all my real estate friends: List this house!

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

All pictures taken by Russel Ray using a Canon 550D camera and a Canon 55-250mm lens. Picture frames from Corel PaintShop Pro X4.

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

House at the University of California San Diego

A challenge to all my real estate friends: List this house!

Ron and Alexandra Seigel of Napa Consultants in Santa Barbara, CaliforniaThis post is dedicated to Ron and Alexandra Seigel, luxury real estate marketing consultants and owners of Napa Consultants in Santa Barbara, California. I have known Ron and Alexandra for a few years through a real estate professional networking site. I highly recommend them for anyone needing luxury real estate marketing services anywhere in the world, not just in Santa Barbara or California.

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

When I did a post on March 2 about Dr. Seuss and the Geisel Library at the University of California San Diego (UCSD), I was reminded that there are lots of picture-taking opportunities on the UCSD campus. It ranks probably as the quirkiest campus I’ve ever visited, and I’ve been to five or six hundred college and university campuses, maybe more.

An addition to campus late last year was a house. It seems to be a standard house, until you look at where it’s located. Is this an example of the old real estate adage: “Location, location, location.”

I want all my real estate friends to come up with their best listing presentation for this fine piece of Southern California real estate:

House at the University of California San Diego

House at the University of California San Diego

House at the University of California San Diego

House at the University of California San Diego

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

That house sits on top of the Irwin & Joan Jacobs School of Engineering building, which I think is six stories tall. Irwin Jacobs is a founder and former chairman of Qualcomm, the company that makes much of the stuff that lets your mobile phone do what it does….. blame him.

I went over to the Geisel Library, sixth floor, to get one more picture:

House at the University of California San Diego

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Related posts:
» The Geisel Library at the University of California San Diego
» The Sun God of the University of California San Diego

All pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

All pictures taken by Russel Ray using a Canon 550D camera and a Canon 55-250mm lens. Picture frames from Corel PaintShop Pro X4.

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

Snow in San Diego!

In the eleven years that I have been making a living doing home inspections I have only had to do an inspection in the rain seven times. Interestingly, I’ve done two inspections in the snow, both right here in San Diego County.

Yesterday my inspection was out in Cuyamaca, a great retreat 6,000 feet above sea level where you can go camping, birding, boating, fishing, hiking….

Location of Cuyamaca, California

It snowed in the East County mountains two nights ago, with some areas receiving up to eleven inches of snow. Snow in the mountains means that the population of the City of San Diego drops to about 600,000 at times while the other 600,000 head to the mountains to play in the snow. I’m not one of them. I’m afraid that the heater in my car will stop working as soon as it sees snow…. Car’s way of punishing me for taking it out in the cold.

Cuyamaca is just 60 miles from downtown San Diego. Theoretically, that’s a one-hour drive. On any given snow day, though, that drive could take you three or four hours, due mostly to traffic on those winding two-lane mountain roads.

Following are a few snow pictures from yesterday’s journey to Cuyamaca.

The main road, State Highway 79, is just a two-lane winding road with lots of switchbacks:

Two-lane winding mountain road to Cuyamaca

There is no stopping on most of the road but where stopping and parking is allowed, it’s full on snow days:

Parking areas are full on snow days

When you find a line of empty cars, just look off to the side of the road in the snow to find the people who have abandoned their cars:

People playing in the snow

I couldn’t stop on the way out because I had a schedule to keep. Here’s the house that I inspected, except that I disclaimed the roof:

House in the snow

Once work is done, it’s time to play. First, go exploring the small roads through the neighborhood:

Road through the forested neighborhood

If you’re lucky, you’ll find a snowman:

Snowman

 On a snow day, the boats are docked, waiting for warmer weather:

Not too many boaters out today

The fields look beautiful in their white dress:

Field of snow

Can you feel sorry for a rock? This one looks cold:

Snow-covered rock

I wasn’t looking for birds, but I did find quite a few, including this Canada goose looking lost and forlorn, and speaking his mind about the snow:

Canada goose speaking his mind about the snow

Will Hamm, real estate agent in Aurora, ColoradoThis post is dedicated to Will Hamm, a real estate agent with Cornerstone Homes/Metro Brokers Marina Square in Denver, Colorado. I have known Will for a couple of years through a real estate professional networking site. I highly recommend him for anyone needing real estate services in the Denver, Colorado, area.

All pictures taken by Russel Ray using a Canon 550D camera and a 55-250mm Canon lens.

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

Shoebill at the San Diego Zoo's Safari Park

The shoebill: Some birds just look weird

I had a home inspection up in Escondido today, and when I’m in that area I always try to make it by the San Diego Zoo’s Safari Park for a little while. Safari Park comprises about 1,800 acres, eighteen times larger than the San Diego Zoo. That makes it feasible to have some animals that require more room to roam than what the Zoo can provide.

The mountains are bigger….

The lakes are bigger….

The gardens are bigger….

Some of the birds are bigger:

Shoebill at the San Diego Zoo's Safari Park

Shoebill at the San Diego Zoo's Safari Park

That’s a shoebill (Balaeniceps rex), named for its massive shoe-like bill:

Shoebill at the San Diego Zoo's Safari Park

I don’t have any shoes like that, but it does remind me of those wooden shoes that they wear in Holland.

The shoebill gets up to 59 inches tall, weighs up to 15 pounds, and has a wing span up to 100 inches. It is indigenous to tropical swamps in east Africa.

Known to ancient Egyptians, the shoebill was not classified until the 19th century when the scientific community got some live birds. Originally it was classified with the storks but recent DNA studies indicate that it is more closely related to pelicans. Some ornithologists consider the shoebill to be the missing link between pelicans and storks.

Habitat destruction and hunting have resulted in the shoebill being listed as a vulnerable species.

There are two shoebills at the San Diego Zoo’s Safari Park. Check out the look that this one is giving me:

Shoebill at the San Diego Zoo's Safari Park

Belinda SpillmanThis post is dedicated to Belinda Spillman, a real estate agent with Cornerstone Homes/Metro Brokers Marina Square in Aurora, Colorado. I have known Belinda for a couple of years through significant interaction on the Internet at a real estate professional networking site. I highly recommend her for anyone needing real estate services in the Denver, Colorado, area.

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

I went out birdwatching and came home with these….

Picture of the momentI went out birdwatching early yesterday morning with the San Diego Beginning Birders.

Although I got lots of good bird pictures (San Diego: A bird-lover’s paradise), I also came home with pictures of some of our fine, furry, four-legged friends.

Fine, furry, four-legged friends (dogs!)

Fine, furry, four-legged friends (dogs!)

Fine, furry, four-legged friends (dogs!)

Fine, furry, four-legged friends (dogs!)

I particularly like the last picture of the dog resting on the picnic table waiting for his master to return. Master had gone to the edge of the woods to spread some bread for the birds.

Find other posts in my Picture of the Moment series by clicking on the logo at the upper right.

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

My first whale-in-the-wild pictures

Picture of the momentI have lived in San Diego since May 1993. Although I have been familiar with the whale migration that occurs along the San Diego coast, I had never been on a whale-watching cruise until last month.

Surprisingly, whale-watching cruises are quite affordable. For anywhere from $30 to $45, one can take a 3½-hour cruise out into the Pacific ocean to watch the whales on their great migration from Alaska to Baja California in the late fall and early winter to have their little ones, and then back to Alaska in the late winter and early Spring.

Although there is no guarantee that you’ll see whales on any specific cruise, most of the cruise companies will give you a ticket for another cruise if yours is whale-less. On the cruise that I went on, we saw dozens of whales in addition to many dolphins, seals, and sea lions.

The swales were six to eight feet and we were rockin’ and rollin’. I set the shutter speed on my Canon 550D to 1/500, thinking that should be adequate.

It wasn’t.

My first whale pictures are a little out of focus. All that means, though, is that I’ll simply have to go on another whale-watching cruise to get better pictures. Until then, here are my best three:

Whales migrating past San Diego

Whales migrating past San Diego

Whales migrating past San Diego

Find other posts in my Picture of the Moment series by clicking on the logo at the upper right.

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat