Friday, April 15, 2005

It's starting to feel a lot like....

No, not Christmas! It's starting to feel a lot like spring time. I'm getting a bit excited. I like to do a lot of outdoor and landscape photography, but I think last summer just sucked. It was nice that there weren't a lot of hot days, but there were just way too many rainy and overcast days. I had some decent weather on a few of my smaller trip here and there, but there were even more bad days. My August trip around Michigan got half rained out. Half of my lighthouse trips ended up being overcast skies. Not to mention (unrelated to photography) I hardly got to do any swimming all year. While not a horrible summer, I was more than a bit disappointed.

In fact, thinking back about it now, I was starting to wonder if maybe I was having clouded memory about just how bad the weather was last year. So I decided to go back and review the summer/fall months from last year to see if it was as bad as I remember. A quick look at the historical data over at Weather Underground (a wonderful site to get your weather from) shows that,'s not just my memory. June was really the first month after getting my camera in which I was able to start doing some decent shooting, so I started there. So how bad was the weather? For the summer months (June/July/August) here is what I came up with:
19 sunny days
28 partly cloudy days
2 completely overcast days
43 rainy days

Wow...that's one heck of a crappy summer. September offered a bit of relief, with 18 sunny day(thats one day less than all 3 summer months combined), 8 partly cloudy, 1 overcast, and 3 rainy. However, October went back to the bad weather: 5 sunny, 4 partly cloudy, 8 overcast, and 14 rainy.

This year, Mother Nature is starting to get my hopes up for some good shooting weather. There have been a tremendous number of clear days so far. Lots of beautiful sunrises and even some nice sunsets. One day had one of the coolest sunsets I've ever seen. The clouds had rolled in as a solid layer, but there was a break at the horizon for the sun to do some dramatic side lighting on the wavy underside of the cloud layer. I was completely unprepared for what was about to happen, and I didn't have my camera on me at the time, but my brother-in-law was able to snap a nice shot on his Canon S-70 from his front porch.

Last week, the first flowers started popping up. First it was some daffodils at work. I could not resist snapping a few shots of those, including the following.

Then at home, our tulips just started to open, along with some other purple flowers which I planted a few years ago, but can't remember the name of. There were also some yellow blossoms opening up on one of the neighbors bushes.

So anyway, I'm just hoping that this is really a sign of a nice summer to come, and not just Mother Nature's way of torturing me with a sick sense of humor. I'm looking forward to getting some better photo opportunities this year. I've got a few trips planned already.

In May, I'll be heading to Seattle for a week. I hope to hit a number of sites there. I'd like to spend a whole 2 days on the Olympic peninsula: in the mountains, the rain forest, and stopping off at the ocean beach. I'm also planning a day for Mt. St. Helen's (volcanic activity never know what it's going to do lately), and another day for Mt. Rainier. That leaves 4 days to see other things. Of course, I'll hit the usual spots downtown (waterfront, pikes place, space needle). I also hope to get to Snoqualmie Falls. Other than that, we'll see what happens.

In July, I've got a trip planned for 4 days in Copper Harbor, Michigan. There are a few lighthouses in the area I'd like to see, some wonderful shorelines, some old growth forests, lots of small towns, and a few decent (though not huge) waterfalls. Unlike my usual trips of packing a lot of things into a few short days, I'm intentionally under scheduling this trip. My hope is to just be able to spend a lot of time in one area, and really focus on shooting more of the smaller details This is in contrast to my usual strategy of getting the grand overview of a place with some basic but lovely shots, and then moving on. With the extra time, hopefully I'll be able to get some better shots, and be able to capture more of the heart and soul of the area.

1 comment:

Zimm said...


I've been reading your blog for a while, and I enjoy it thoroughly. I have a friend in Bloomfield Hills who could use an 'amatuer' photographer to shoot some simple guest shots during the cocktail hour of her wedding. It would be a paid opportunity, and I thought you might be interested. I was going to do it, but I'm unavailable that's the saturday after July 4th...I believe it's the 9th. If you're interested, leave a comment, and we'll connect. Thanks for the great site!