It’s Worth The Price

Yellow -headed Blackbird by Gary Gray
Yellow -headed Blackbird

Feathered Friday.

Still not much happening with my photography these days, so I’ll share some older stuff until the new stuff arrives.

There is a area near Walden, Colorado where these Yellow-headed blackbirds often gather. They are not easily spooked and make good photographic subjects. I think they are lovely and enjoy finding them.

Things are beginning to green up here in Colorado, at least below 6,000 feet. It will be another month before the high country sees what we have down here in Denver.

This is the time of year we do out house repairs and we just finished installing a very long stretch of privacy fence. Once I get through with the maintenance stuff, I’ll be heading up north to get the cabin opened for the season. The cabin can be hit and miss. About half the time we have a plumbing problem with the water pipes. Winter runs long and is harsh in the Laramie Mountains of Northern, Colorado. It’s worth the price.

This Time Last Year

Lewis and Clark Bridge on the Ohio River in Louisville, Kentucky
Lewis and Clark Bridge on the Ohio River in Louisville, Kentucky

Man, does time fly by?

It was about this time last year when I was visiting my mother and photographing Thoroughbred horses near Midway, Ky. Near the end of my trip, I arranged to meet my older brother in downtown Louisville.

It was a perfect weather day, the city was preparing for the Kentucky Derby as they do each year. Spring was in full swing. I decided to drive downtown along an old familiar route, River Road and photograph all the bridges across the Ohio River from Madison, Indiana to New Albany Indiana.

This particular bridge is the Lewis and Clark Bridge on the Ohio River in near the city of Prospect at a place called Transylvania Beach. This bridge is fairly new. Back in the day I spent many hours on the Ohio River. It was our recreational zone of choice for house boating and water skiing and other odd things.

Remnants of the old boat docks still protrude from the banks of the Ohio as this stretch of Kentucky shore-line was once filled with private boats and docks. Those days are mostly gone now. Floods, fuel costs, and other factors have conspired to change the culture. There was never a bridge here when I frequented the Harrods Creek/Ohio River channels, so seeing this sitting on top of my memory is sorta like having your old home torn down and in it’s place is a parking lot.

As for the other bridges, I managed to get everything done while I traveled along River Road to meet my brother for lunch. We finished up the last bridge together, tromping around in the thickets along the banks of the Ohio River in New Albany, Indiana. It was like we were 12 years old again.

Interestingly, this photo is pretty popular with my stock agencies. I made the right choice to go for them them.

First Times

Photograph of Ava riding a horse.
Ava rides a horse for the first time (photograph by Trudy Gray)

My granddaughter, Ava, was with my wife the other day when they drove past a field with horses. Ava got excited about the prospect of seeing the horses and was able to get a closer view of the critters from the fence. But that wasn’t enough.

Trudy subsequently contacted the owners of the horses to arrange for Ava’s first horse ride. Yesterday, they visited that ranch and Ava got her first taste of horse riding and my wife. Trudy documented it with her Sony RX100 II.

This is four year old Ava riding a horse for the first time in her life. Her excitement leading up to the horse riding lesson was uncontrollable. I’ve never seen a little girl so excited and this photo explains the joy of her first time perfectly.

I see a lot of horse riding in her future.

That’s A Different Story

Bull moose in a lake. Northern Colorado
Bull Moose – Northern Colorado

I suppose I’m a traditional type of person in that I find emotional comfort in certain traditions.

For internet purposes, I practice the tradition of “Moose Monday.”

I’m not quite certain of the origins of “Moose Monday” as it’s been observed by quite a few people I associate with. I’m I the reason? I don’t think so, but I may have contributed to the delinquency of others.

The Moose Collective. I think the first guy other than me who I recall using the phrase was Matt Dirkson and he too appears to have this insatiable appetite for photographing wild moose but we aren’t alone. Birds of a feather so to speak, it was inevitable that we collide and join a growing a photographic tradition of naming specific photographic themes for days of the week. Some days are better than others, literally.

Still, no one person gets credit for anything organizational in a collective. It’s more symbiotic than organized. We have “Moose Mommas” in the group too, so it isn’t a guy thing, I know that much.

These things aren’t just limited to Moose either. Us moose people in the collective are sort of a sub-collective. There are many sub-collectives in photography and we all appear to be traditional people from what I can see. Many of us are obcessed with our traditional ways, so we find our collectives and carry on.

To add to the confusions, I’ve picked up a nick-name as well.”The Moose Whisperer.” I’m not certain of the origin of that name, as I’ve heard it used many times over the years describing me but that’s a different story.


Until I’m Gone

Photograph of a misty fog over a lake in Colorado
Dawn in the Rocky Mountains

A much needed dose of peace and tranquility.

Some mornings you wake up and the world’s conflicts are thrust upon you.

I’m cognizant of the fact that I’m far more fortunate than many to be able to experience peace and beauty in my life.

This photograph is a reminder that not everything in this world revolves around politics and war.

May you enjoy peace and tranquility in your life.

I hope I can keep it this way until I’m gone.

Daydreaming of The San Juan Mountains

Panoramic photo of the San Juan Mountains in Colorado
San Juan Mountains – Colorado

After three weeks of website work, I’m taking Friday off. My mind is burnt and I’m daydreaming about getting into the mountains.

Today’s photo was taken near Ridgway, Colorado a few years back.

I’ve visited this location many times over the years. It’s a grand view and the variation in weather, sky and autumn color from year to year always makes for a new and interesting scene.

I’ll be working in the San Juans this Autumn and taking bookings for private photo tours. Check out my main website for more information.

Wednesday’s Photograph

Sunset on the windows section of arches national park
Arches National Park, Utah

I’m still holed up in my office working on Internet stuff but this warm weather is calling me to get outside.

I’ve started a new project helping a blind friend build a website and that to me seems more important at the moment than more photos of Blue Heron.  I have photos of Blue Heron.

I’ll be patient until spring is in full swing.


Vintage Lenses

Landscape Photography by Gary Gray
Merrimac and Monitor Butte Near Moab, Utah

I’ve been playing with a vintage Nikon lens on the D810.

The Nikkor 35-70mm f/2.8 D

An older lens built in the day for use on their film bodies, this lens can be found dirt cheap on eBay for between $200-300. 20 years ago, this was a professional grade lens and it was commonly used by photojournalists. Production ran from December 1987 through 1992.

Today, it’s been relegated to the odd collectors item.

You can read more about this lens here.

Today’s photo was taken with this lens using a Nikon D800.

The quality holds up too.

I’ve been contemplating selling it, but for what it costs I’m not sure I want to let it go.