Bethlehem Art Walk

Me at the beginning of the show, before hours of sitting through the slow slog of mercantilism crushed my spirit.

Just returned from the Bethlehem Art Sit Walk, where I had my first ever booth, from which I tried to sell photographs and fine photographic accessories.

For my first time, it was a good outing. The rain stayed away and I sold many cards, sets, and even one print, which I didn’t expect.

Below Average White Balance

Tree in field outside Bethel, Maine.
Tree in field outside Bethel, Maine.

I was shooting some little stuff at the dining room table last night, using my new 100mm Canon macro lens. I didn’t want the overhead light to turn everything yellow, so I adjusted my camera’s AWB settings for indoors. I forgot to change it back, which is unfortunate for what it did to an otherwise lovely photo opportunity. I saw this tree driving to Falmouth this afternoon and made a note to try and shoot it when I was driving back.

The bad AWB setting screwed with the color. It’s kind of interesting in an off-world way, but I would have much rather just captured the light that I saw. (I tried using Photoshop to fix it, but the video tutorial went over my head; I have no idea how people figure that thing out.)

Still, the macro has some really sweet capabilities. The narrow depth of field makes it hard to focus, of course, but I like how I can blur backgrounds now without cheating on the FocusPro app.

I really, really like my new lens.

New Glass

Last night, Mrs. cpb made me open my birthday present two days early. She got me a 100mm Canon macro lens, which will allow me to take closeup photos of small objects without having to use my zoom lens. The zoom served me well, but that kind of focal length can lead to distortion and blurred images, especially if you can’t keep your hands completely still.

I knew an honest-to-God macro would improve my closeup stuff, but wow, was I unprepared for the difference. I have a lot to learn—the depth of field is about the diameter of a hydrogen atom—but even these crummy photos are light years better than the stuff I was taking before.


Harvestman in the snow, Randolph, NH.
Harvestman in the snow, Randolph, NH.

There are over 4,000 species of harvestman, a type of arachnid often called daddy longlegs. We spotted this individual while snow hiking around Durand Lake. He was chilling out on the crest between two cross-country ski tracks. My son nudged him a little and sure enough, he was alive and probably doing fine. We left him alone and went on our way. Any tiny black critter confident enough to hang out on a cold, white background deserves our respect.

By the way, it’s a myth that these creatures have the most poisonous bite in the arthropod phylum, but have fangs that are too weak to penetrate human skin. None of the species in this group has fangs or poison. They have to pounce on their prey and pry it apart. This is unlike their soulless cousins, the spiders, who employ more cowardly methods. Like poison, webs, and lurking in my bathtub.