If Doppler ever learns to talk, her first words will be, “Turn off the damn camera!” I’m taking advantage of the situation. She can’t say no. She’s been my photographic subject thousands of times.
Every once in a while a single photo will stand out. This one does to me.
Helaine was drying Doppler after her shower. The blow dryer was farther down her back. Doppler was prone with her snout flat on a towel.
I was flat on my belly and on the other side of the bedroom when I snapped away. It wass a 300mm F/4 lens, a telephoto. I shot at 1/200th, slow for this focal length but OK because of image stabilization.
The ISO was 4000. Very high. You get tiny noise specs on the photo. It’s the price you pay for sharpness in low light.
This lens, configured this way, produces a shallow depth of field. On shots like this you try and get the eyes in focus and forget everything else. That wasn’t happening. Her bangs worked fine. Doppler’s nose is slightly out-of-focus while most of her body is softly blurred.
I like this shot in part because of the incredible contrast in her fur. Bright white to shadowy dark grey are represented. Each cluster of strands lies a different length from the lens, so not only is there contrast in luminance, there’s contrast in sharpness.
When Doppler speaks, after she tells me to stop, she’ll let me know this photo captures her essence.
If it seems like computers get slower over time, you’re right. It’s not because they’re wearing out. It’s because we’re inadvertently adding little helper programs every time we install something new. These are the programs that check to see if your software needs updating or get large applications started faster.
All of this happens at the expense of your computer’s performance.
No matter how hard I try to avoid these little vampires, they accumulate. After a while, a fast computer becomes a slow computer.
That’s the story with this Windows 7 laptop I’m typing on. Photo editing became a painful experience. Other chores too.
The disk light was constantly flashing, a sign I’d used all 4Gb RAM and was manipulating data on the much slower hard drive.
This afternoon I pulled off the data and moved it to an external drive. Next, three DVDs with the restore software had to be burned. Then, with the first disk in the drive I hit the power button.
This is not for the faint of heart. The laptop is returned to its original factory state. Everything has to be reinstalled. Passwords must be remembered.
It will take most of the week before this machine has everything it needs. I have all the disks. It’s just the time.
Right now I’m downloading 500Mb of Windows 7 updates! The computer seems a lot peppier. It would be nice if my effort made a difference.
I got an email from Rick Allison this morning. It was an email forward from his voiceover agent, forwarding an email from Sarah Douglas.
Dear friends and family,
I want to share with you that Hal moved on from this life last night. He died just as he lived- with grace, courage, and tranquility. My mother and I were by his side.
If you are so moved, join us in thought and prayer as we surround his soul with love and peace for the next stage of his journey.
With warmth and gratitude, Sarah
The name Hal Douglas probably doesn’t mean anything to you, but you know his voice. You’ve heard it a thousand times. He voiced everything!
How was it possible to have a voice so rough and simultaneously so clear? That was Hal’s gift. There’s really nothing more you could do than marvel at it. Certainly no one could compete with it!
The New York Times wrote about Hal five years ago.
Mr. Douglas says he can’t keep track of what trailers he recorded yesterday, much less over the almost 60 years he’s been behind a mike. He did “Philadelphia” and “Forrest Gump,” “Men in Black” and “Coneheads,” “Stranger Than Fiction” and “Marley and Me.” He recorded a voice-over for the Broadway play “Equus,” narrated programs on the History Channel (in the days before “Ice Road Truckers”), and served as the voice of the WB network.
“The fact is, my voice has been out there,” he said. “And it hangs out there. You sit down in the theater and sometimes in three out of four trailers I’d be on them.” – NYTimes.com
Hal’s name came up often in my conversations with Rick. We’re grownups. We discussed Hal like we’d discussed Mantle or Mays as kids. He was larger than life. A certain part of both of us wanted to grow up and be Hal, if only in front of a microphone.
There are other deep throated, beautifully phrased v/o guys. There was only one Hal. He will be missed.
Last year as we decided where to move, Doppler was a large concern. We wanted a dog friendly place. That’s part of why we chose Orange County.
Because of weather, life is lived more outdoors. And most places without roofs welcome dogs. You see dogs at the mall. You see dogs in Home Depot. You see dogs on restaurant outdoor patios.
That’s where we took Doppler tonight.
Woodbury Town Center is our local shopping center. It’s got a Ralph’s (supermarket), Home Depot, Staples, Trader Joe, Walgreen’s, banks, medical, dental and vet offices and a bunch of smaller shops. There are about a dozen restaurants clustered together in an outdoor courtyard.
We sat down outside at The Counter. It’s a build-your-own burger place. Doppler supervised quietly from Helaine’s lap.
The waitress saw me taking a photo with my cellphone and pointed toward a nearby fountain. She said it was perfect for sunset shots. She was right.
We wouldn’t take Doppler into a store with food, but other than that she goes nearly everywhere. We’re never the only people with a dog.
Irvine produces a lot of strawberries! It’s likely the farmland will become housing at some point. Not yet. Meanwhile, the satellite image (thanks Google) at the top of this post shows one of many strawberry fields in my part of town. If there’s a crop that lends itself to the anal retentive it’s strawberries! The […]
My dad and I were on the phone yesterday. He told me he just ordered corn flakes via Amazon. A click in the evening brought the flakes 36 hours later. “How do they do it,” he asked? My mom and dad, now living comfortably near my sister and her family in frigid Wisconsin, aren’t very […]
Busy Tuesday. Part planned. Part surprise. Up the 5 in traffic. That’s the norm. We’re 45 miles from Los Angeles. An hour without traffic. Hours with. Plan on an hour and a half, then pray. I met Gary Brown on the edge of Beverly Hills at a Starbucks. Gary was news director at Channel 3 […]
I bought a new car a few months ago. Traded my SLK230 for an SLK250. Higher number. Smaller engine. Well played Mercedes. It’s been 15 years since my last new car. Lots has changed. I like having Bluetooth. I like satellite radio. This car feels more substantial… and it’s a lot less noisy. And then […]
My audio studio is taking shape. A mic stand came this morning. Now my MudGuard, Blue Yeti microphone and wind screen are all at eye level. I am so dweeby. Part of this afternoon was spent getting a cable at Fry’s. I love Fry’s. They have a full aisle of cables! Now there’s an extra […]