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CategoryDaily (or So) Update

What are We Doing?

Hanging out at Xi’an’s Big Wild Goose Pagoda taking IR images.  Need more sun.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giant_Wild_Goose_Pagoda

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Faces of Xi’an

I’ve now expanded my “Faces of Chennai” to “Faces of Xi’an”.  All but two images are candid, i.e. no permission asked.  Out again today for more walk-abouts in Xi’an.

Can you tell which were taken with my near-infrared converted camera?

First “Face(s) of China”

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This gentlemen was resting at the DaXingShan Temple yesterday and by habit I gave him my head bobble (used in Chennai during photowalks to get the okay to photograph).  He looked at this strange Laowai (foreigner) and was okay with a photo.  Need a different introduction in China for street portraits.

Today is Chu Er – 2nd Day of CNY which dictates a gathering of the family for a great meal.  We’re headed for a great local Hot Pot restaurant at noon (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hot_pot).

Chu Yi – 1st Day of Chinese New Year: Time to Visit Your Local Temple

Every year on Chu Yi, we visit our local temple – Da Xing Shan where we are amongst 1000s of worshipers.  As usual, fireworks never cease at the front gate as seen in this series of stills.  Very loud as intended to keep the xiao ren (devils) away and keep your luck for the year.

Nikon D300S Infrared Converted Camera – 1st Image

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Out of camera the IR image is fairly bright red in color as one would assume given it’s IR at 720nm.  This above image is after I applied an Adobe DNG (RAW) file profile change in Lightroom to extend the range of the white balance temperature slider.

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Next, the image is taken to Photoshop where a Channel Swap is performed, i.e. Red and Blue channels exchanged.  Have a photoshop “action” already setup to make it happen automatically. I could have stopped here with Faux (False) colors yet took it to B&W.

The featured image is now the B&W conversion processed in NIK Silver Efex Pro, love the high contrast and detail.  Many more to process yet thought I’d stop and share.

Yes this is the second to last step in getting a rice paddy ready for planting the seedlings, i.e. cultivating the mud.  Look at those add-on metal frames over the wheels for traction.

Visited Sri Venkateswara Swamy Vaari (Balaji) & Thiruthani Temples

Got up early and ventured northwest from Chennai to visit two famous temples in Tamil Nadu’s northern neighbor, i.e. state of Andhra Pradesh (AP).  Of course, those who know – Balaji Temple it’s a word-class Hindu site and not to mention with vast wealth.  The grounds show.

The Balaji Temple was at 30% capacity and even at those numbers it is was full enough for me.

On our way back to Chennai, one could see multiple groups of pilgrims dressed in “yellow” garb walking north towards Balaji Temple – days for some in bare feet the entire way including a 4-6 hour hike up the mountain top.

Lots of images to process yet I’m back out Sunday morning to shoot my D300S IR converted DSLR for the first time.  Sunday night will be packed with new adventures to provide you, our viewer.

Here 22 ladies are all lined up to finish planting a rice paddy.  Stopped on the road as the group just took off planting in a somewhat un-orchestrated start.

 

Macro Continued

Today I continued my experimentation with Macro Photography just outside the house, i.e. a photo-crawl.

From a technical perspective it’s a bit boring if all you want is a 100% sharp, in-focus image. (actually I’d love to have a dead-sharp image – in time)

Yet with a shallow depth of field, one can bring out an artistic side taking insignificant objects and making then known to others.

Not sure I’ve accomplished this today, maybe tomorrow.  Need to find some bugs.

Did you know that Butterflies have bulbed antennae, while Moths have feathered ones?  Now we do.

Polambakkam – Bullock Power

Stopped on the way back from Polambakkam to witness rice planting and tree (Tamarind) cutting. Always an adventure.

Rice paddies can be planted 3x per year if there is ample water while ten women can plant rice seedings in a 100 x 150 yard paddy in one day.  Back-breaking work.  The man is using his bullocks to complete the final leveling of the paddy ahead of hand planting seedlings.  Another hard-working job in the mud.

The Tamarind trees along the road plus others are numbered and controlled by the Gov’t requiring permission to cut and delivery for Gov’t auction.  Apparently this wood is used for heating, nothing special like furniture…

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