Great egret watching

Yesterday, I ventured out to take a few photos, not really planning where I would go. I decided to check out the Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area for my first time. It’s just a few miles from home and I think about visiting it every time I drive by it.

I loved it but instantly regretted not taking longer lenses with me. These were taken with the 18-55mm kit lens, the longest “reach” I had with me. I thought I would end up doing street photography in Downtown Sacramento, not spending so much time watching birds. I ended up observing this great egret for ~45 minutes while it flew and hunted amongst some shallows, near the trail.

Branches like neurons

Last weekend, I wandered the Effie Yeaw Nature Center for a few hours, hiking a little over 2.5 miles, testing out my newly acquired XF 16-80mm f/4 lens.

First, it felt great to get out into nature after a long, busy week. It was my first full week back at work and school and, well, let’s just say that it took a lot out of me.

I purchased the lens specifically for hiking as I wanted something versatile yet light and compact. It’s still early (this was its first outing, after all) but I do think this lens is a definite keeper. I attached it to the X-T1, on which it fits and balances perfectly, and barely felt it hanging from my neck for the duration of the hike.

In hindsight, I rushed through a lot of the photos. Partly because I was just excited about trying out the different focal lengths of the lens, partly because I didn’t really setup the X-T1 the way I should have, and partly because I was just excited to be out and about.

Slowing down, practicing patience, and paying more attention to detail. Those are just some of my photography goals for 2020. I didn’t work on them during this outing, though.

As a side note: every time I use the X-T1 I am reminded how much I really enjoy using it. I like the “older” colors and overall image quality that comes from it. You can see some imperfection in the color photo, along the right edge. Of course I could have edited it out but, I kind of like it. I like the imperfections.

Lone Survivor

There are two rose bushes, one on each side of our front walkway, leading to our front door. They flourish, much more than they should because, each week the HOA’s landscapers butcher them, hacking them down to an “acceptable” size (as deemed by the HOA).

It’s unfortunate that this week, only one remaining rose remained after the landscapers passed through.

HOAs are evil.

I couldn't make it through December

I gave up on my Dec.19 project – taking one picture a day during the month of December – because I was reminded how much I don’t like “photo a day” type projects.

They’re not the way I like to photograph. And soon, as in this try, it begins to feel like something I have to do, not want to.

You can see that the quality of the photos declines as I moved through the month, which reflects my attitude with the project. I think this was the most disappointing to me.

I’m glad I tried it, though. It was meant to be a primer, a test, before starting 2020. One of the photo projects I was considering was a Project 365 (photo a day). Thankfully I’ll scratch that one from the list.