While visiting the Center for Wooden Boats I can across this particular item.  The boat looked like it was carved out of one piece of wood and was painted pretty elaborately. I’m not sure if the markings are native American or not, but they kind of look like they could be.  Which made me wonder if the boat was a re-creation of a native American canoe.

It was moored by the bank on Lake Union and is obviously used regularly as there was an oar inside the boat and the inside was wet.  Anyway I grabbed some shots – I went down to the jetty to get as close to the water level as possible so I could get a good reflection in the water.  I took several pictures and then some people came out of the main building, got in the boat and pushed away from the side – and off they rowed into the lake.

From this position I managed to get a lot of green reflections from the bank in the water and a reflection of the boat too.   The colors of the boat were great against the water (all the oranges, browns and blacks).  I liked the dock just in the picture to the right too.  So the image came out quite well.

This is getting worse!  The guys are dropping like flies and I’m now convinced that this is no longer an accident!  Poor Red was ill watching this, they found Carter Clone on the top of the burner – it was a mess.

It’s weekend time again folks so tomorrow I’m off out to get some new pictures.  But for tonight we have another shot from the Center for Wooden Boats.  If you go there you can sign up for a workshop and learn how to fix your own wooden boat.  If you attend a class, this is where you go.

They have this shed area where you have the lessons and stay undercover when you do – what ever you do when you fix boats.  I took this shot as it was quite dark under the roof and I wanted to see if I could get the interior to come out.  This picture was heavily processed but it was only one shot.  I managed to bring out the shadows in the ceiling and still now blow out the outside.

I really liked visiting this place it was pretty cool.  If I wasn’t completely allergic to exercise I might even be tempted to take a row boat out, but lets not go nuts!

Tonight the guys decided that one of them should sit at the top of a tree.  They rock, paper, scissor’d for it and Red won.

I really hope you like boats, as I still have some more to post.  One of the challenges around this “post a picture a day” resolution is that I visit somewhere, take a load of pics, and then don’t go out again until all the pictures are posted.  So you tend to get all the images from one location together.  What I should have done, is visited a few places and rotated images from each location, so it’s not so boring.  Maybe next time I do this I’ll try that.  WHAT AM I SAYING – I’m never doing this again and only have 18 days left – I’m SOOOOO excited.

OK, so about the image.  I was at the Center for Wooden Boats (obviously) and saw this boat mored against the jetty.  What caught my eye was the reflection in the water.  It was so clear (almost like a mirror) that I couldn’t take the shot quick enough.  I also loved the fact that the colors appeared so well in the water.  You can see the blue sky and blue and yellow flags and white posts.

I composed this so that there was more water than land deliberately, but of course Lisa on seeing this said “but you can’t see the reflected things above”!  I actually liked this composition and had another one where you couldn’t see the real boat at all.  But that just looked like an upside down slightly blurry picture so I didn’t select that one for posting.

Anyway, if you get the chance to visit the The Center for Wooden Boats I really recommend it.

Master Chief decided to visit Carter’s new house today, it’s very cool and rather festive!

I was walking around the Center for Wooden Boats taking pictures and some girl walked past me who obviously worked there.  So I asked her if it was OK to shoot and grab some shots (I know it is ok, they don’t mind – but it never hurts to ask).  So she said “Yes of course, thanks for asking” with big smile.  I guess people don’t usually ask her.  So them she asked if I wanted to shoot a picture in their main workshop.  I’m not sure if people are allowed in there but she was all friendly and offered so I jumped at the chance.

The workshop was very cool.  It was a wooden building with a long wooden bench against the wall that was covered with tools.  There was also a boat in there that they were working on  and there were sails hanging from the ceiling. At the end of the room was some guy working on something small at his desk.

I set the camera on a tripod in the corner and composed a nice shot to include the boat in the foreground and the tools and bench at the back.  This picture was five exposures all one stop apart.  (Basically I took 5 pictures starting with a very dark one, and subsequent shots with double the amount of light in each).  When I got home I put the 5 pictures into Photomatix and “tonemapped” them into a single high dynamic range picture.  You have probably heard of this as HDR.

So why do this?  Why is HDR interesting?  Our eyes are just amazing, people think their eyes have enormous field of vision which is kind of true (it’s almost 180 degrees), but really you only focus on about 5 degrees at a time everything else is blurred.  We overcome this by moving our eyes around a scene all the time.  Your eyes also manage dynamic range this way too (how much light and dark we can see), by moving our eyes, we can see in shadow areas and bright areas at different times, but you walk away remembering everything.  Unfortunately, cameras dynamic range sucks.  When you take a picture the camera try’s to expose for as much as possible, but in scenes like this where there is bright light and dark shadows, the camera will fail, there will always be areas you don’t see.  By creating an HDR image you really get to “see” what you would have seen if you where there.

That’s why I LOVE HDR.  It can turn a boring image into an amazing one.

A couple of the guys were trying to move a present today, but something was stopping them – or at least making the job much harder.

So I did tell you that I would be posting some “boats” over the next few days.  Well, what did you expect, I mean I went to the Center for Wooden Boats, I kind-a have to do it.  Tonight’s boat is, well, a blue one.  OK I admit it, I don’t know anything about boats, but this one is made of wood, it’s blue, oh it’s a row boat and it looks like someone who doesn’t know what they are doing rowed it last – hence the broken front bit.

So why this picture?  Hell why this boat?  Well I really wanted one shot with a shallow depth of field, the bow of the boat really sharp with the focus falling off towards the back.  I even had this composition in mind, one of the oar’s visible and lots of water in the picture.  There have probably been thousands of shots like this, but never one from me.

I’m not sure why I like this picture, I mean it’s basically a mainly out of focus boat, but for some reason I find the image calming.  Probably not everyone’s cut of tea but I like it.

Today the guys decided to carry out a box climb.  This involved scaling a pretty high stack of boxes that Lisa got out for Christmas.