Category Archives: Railroad

Suds, Dickcissel, and Lensbaby Redux

Hey, I screwed up the schedule of posts and 2 posts accidentally posted at the same time yesterday. This one, that I took back down and re-posted and another one with daffodils. It is possible that you didn’t get the post about the daffodils yesterday. If that is the case, click on the link below:

My soul and pocketbook are glad to announce that I have finished THE CANVAS WALL PROJECT. 5 new canvases arrived on Monday and I was able to get them up that night. Here are the 5 final canvases:

Before the Swallow Dares – 2020

There is also an update on Naima and birthday wishes for Jorge in there.

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My soul and pocketbook are glad to announce that I have finished THE CANVAS WALL PROJECT. 5 new canvases arrived on Monday and I was able to get them up that night. Here are the 5 final canvases:


Canvas No. 73

Canvas No. 74

Canvas No. 75

Canvas No. 76

Canvas No. 77

This is what the wall looks like:


Canvas Wall Finished

Now, I realize that when there is furniture in place, not every picture is visible. That isn’t the important part. The important part is that they are there at all.

On to the next decorating project. Whatever that may be!
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I don’t consider pictures that were taken in the same calendar year in which we currently exist to be a backlog. However, if I did, this collection of images would be somewhat of a backlog. This clears out all images from January and February that had yet to be edited or curated.

Pictures from a trip to Dickcissel with Naima, some Lensbaby tests, and a picture of the Root Beer Symposium we had during movie night back in January.


Backyard Bird Art

Naima Lensbaby

Naima at Dickcissel

Naima at Dickcissel

Naima at Dickcissel

Naima

Naima

Naima

Root Beer Symposium

Root Beer Symposium

Root Beer Symposium

Michelle Lensbaby Test

Derrick Lensbaby Test

Derrick Lensbaby Test

Winter at Dickcisel.

We haven’t had Movie Night at The Union Street theater since February, so we haven’t been able to crown a root beer champion, but those pictures might give you the slightest indication of how messy my basement is right now. Although I would estimate that the big parts of the basement cleanup are about 30% done.

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This is your reminder that SIGNS is this week’s THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE theme:


WEEK 247 - SIGNS
SIGNS

A SIGNS picture is just that, a picture of a SIGN or multiple SIGNS. Remember, there are more than one kind of SIGN(S).

Happy photo harvesting!

An Artist’s Notebook Post #3751

We have hit another milestone in the history of “An Artist’s Notebook”. Post #3751. I would normally make these statistical look back at the past type posts on even numbers, but I felt you guys were probably chomping at the bit to see the entries for RULE OF THIRDS.

This blog/online journal burst onto the world on August 9, 2006. Nearly 14 years later, it is somehow still around. That is success of some kind. At least it is perseverance.

As you know, I like meaningless statistics. That is what these posts are usually about. That and to take stock as to how I’m doing with my original mission to:

#1. Write in it.
#2. To be truthful as possible towards my true thoughts and feelings.
#3. Produce something that makes me worthy of having a pretentious sounding journal title like: “An Artist’s Notebook”.

I’m going to say that I continue to manage all 3. You probably wouldn’t know if I was being honest with you on my thoughts and feelings anyways. You’ll just have to take my work for it.

The last time we looked at these stats in Post #3500 on October 4, 2019 these were the 10 most popular categories on “An Artist’s Notebook”:

10. Photography – 311 Posts
9. Teresa – 312 Posts
8. Carla – 314 Posts
7. Shannon -351 Posts
6. Black & White – 390 Posts
5. Weekly Photo Challenge – 394 Posts
4. Jesse – 404 Posts
3. Animals – 477 Posts
2. Portrait – 516 Posts
1. Flowers – 537 Posts

Here are the current “standings”:

MOST POPULAR CATEGORIES

10. Mom – 332 Posts
9. Teresa – 338 Posts
8. WPC – Submissions – 342 Posts
7. Carla – 354 Posts
6. Shannon – 384 Posts
5. Jesse – 455 Posts
4. Portrait – 491 Posts
3. Animals – 554 Posts
2. Black & White – 568 Posts
1. Flowers – 594 Posts

Back in October, these were the 10 Most Popular Not People Categories:

10. Art – 243 Posts
9. Nature – 260 Posts
8. Personal Photo Project – 261 Posts
7. Road Trip – 288 Posts
6. Photography – 311 Posts
5. Black & White – 390 Posts
4. Weekly Photo Challenge – 390 Posts
3. Animals – 477 Posts
2. Portrait – 516 Posts
1. Flowers – 537 Posts

Here are the current “standings”:

MOST POPULAR NOT PEOPLE CATEGORIES

10. Naima – 263 Posts
9. Photoshop – 285 Posts
8. Art – 287 Posts
7. Nature – 303 Posts
6. Road Trip – 308 Posts
5. WPC – Submissions – 342 Posts
4. Portrait – 491 Posts
3. Animals – 559 Posts
2. Black & White – 568 Posts
1. Flowers – 594 Posts

I anticipate by the time we get to post 4,000 Black & White will surpass Flowers. Especially considering I’m giving some consideration into breaking Flowers down by flower type. All that would be one beast of a job.

Back in October, these were the 10 Most Tagged Humans:

10. Jen – 222 Posts
9. Vest – 234 Posts
8. Willy – 238 Posts
7. Derrick – 267 Posts
6. Jay – 294 Posts
5. Mom – 300 Posts
4. Teresa – 312 Posts
3. Carla – 314 Posts
2. Shannon – 351 Posts
1. Jesse – 403 Posts

These are the current standings:

10 MOST TAGGED HUMANS:

10. Jen – 243 Posts
9. Vest – 247 Posts
8. Willy – 258 Posts
7. Derrick – 284 Posts
6. Jay – 312 Posts
5. Mom – 332 Posts
4. Teresa – 338 Posts
3. Carla – 353 Posts
2. Shannon – 384 Posts
1. Jesse – 455 Posts

It is strange that the Top 10 Humans is almost identical. Except Carla has passed Teresa.

You may be wondering, what does it take to improve my Photography 139 Score? How do I get on the big board by the time Post 3750 comes around next August-ish?

1. Submit pictures for the WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE.
2. Assist or pose for photo projects.
3. Be related to me.

If you are wondering who is just outside of the top ten? The 3 people just outside of the Top Ten are Kim, Sara, and Logan.

But what are the most popular pictures and galleries of this website?

Currently, there 74,942 files in the Photography 139 Gallery. That takes up 450.88 GB of storage space on the SmugMug servers.

Over time, it is historically difficult to determine what is the most popular photos and galleries. I can only track statistics for the last 365 days. But for the last 365 days, these are the most popular albums:

TOP 10 PHOTOGRAPHY 139 ALBUMS (POPULARITY BY VIEWS)


Baby Tri-Force 1st Birthday Party

#10 Miller Triplet 1st Birthday Party – 13751 Views

Miller-Peterson Christmas - 2019

#9 Family Happenings – 14222 Views

Iowa State vs. Iowa

#8 Iowa State Cyclones Football – 2019 – 15711 Views

#7Naima– 16108 Views

Taylan Howard

#6 Taylan Howard -2020– 21320 Views

Autumn Sharp

#5 Autumn Sharp – 2020– 21852 Views

WEEK 158 - BOREDOM - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT

#4 Weekly Photo Challenge – Year 6– 29218 Views

July 14, 2019

#3 Selfie Project – 2019 – 40726 Views

9 Emotions - Bill

#2 9 Emotions Project – 43867 Views

WEEK 222 - SPORTS/GAMES - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT

#1 Weekly Photo Challenge – Year 7 – 48433 Views

These are the 10 Most Popular Images (by Views):

10. 973 Views

Camping World Bowl Road Trip - Day 3

9. 1056 Views

Minnesota State Fair - 2019

8. 1063 Views

Rapid City Mission Trip - 2019

7.1082 Views

Thanksgiving - 2019

6. 1116 Views

Howards - 2019

5. 1141 Views

Autumn Sharp

4. 1635 Views

Garrett Larson

3. 1261 Views

Stenslands- 2019

1283 Views

July 15, 2017

1. 2283 Views

January 14, 2019

I’m surprised that THE 9 EMOTIONS PROJECT is still so popular, since I haven’t touched it in over a year. But I do hope to get back to it. In fact, I have purchased a few things to make it possible to get back to THE 9 EMOTIONS PROJECT while safely physically distancing. So if you are interesting in being a victim… err… a subject. You know where to find me.

WEEK 245 THEME REVEAL

I need to start this post by pointing out that today is a very important day. Today is Stephanie’s birthday! Happy birthday Stephanie!


Stephanie Kim - 2009


I hope your birthday is safe and amazing!

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I’m going to be away from computers for much of today, so I won’t be able to reveal the RULE OF THIRDS submissions until some point tomorrow. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t start working on this week’s theme right away:


WEEK 245 - SELF-PORTRAIT
SELF-PORTRAIT

A SELF-PORTRAIT picture is quite simply, a picture of yourself. Almost, but not quite as easy as RULE OF THIRDS.

I look forward to seeing your interpretations!

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I also recently added to THE CANVAS WALL PROJECT. I eight new 16×20 images to the wall. I’m almost done with the project. I have basically the bottom row to finish. Most of those pictures have been ordered too and should arrive sometime this week.

However, these are the eight 16×20 images that were most recently added to the wall:


Canvas No. 53

Canvas No. 54

Canvas No. 55

Canvas No. 56

Canvas No. 57

Canvas No. 58

Canvas No. 59

Canvas No. 60

After I get the pictures that should arrive on Wednesday in place, I believe I will only need 4 more pictures to finish this project off. But it could be more. I could also be less. But my initial calculations indicate 4 more.

But I’ve been wrong before. Don’t want to be wrong any more.

WPC – WEEK 239 – ART

I need to start today by wishing the happiest of birthdays to Faust!


Iowa State vs. Texas

Iowa State vs. South Dakota State

Mankato Road Trip

Mankato Road Trip - 2009

Iowa State vs. UNI

It has been a couple of years since I saw Faust in person. When this virus passes, he will be on the shortlist of people I need to go visit. And not just because he lives in close proximity to a sweet Godzilla statue.

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We did it again! 28 straight weeks of double digit submissions! Woohoo! Apparently a lot of you have ART in their lives. Which is why Obama once said, “The arts are what makes life worth living. You’ve got food, you’ve got shelter, yeah. But the things that make you laugh, make you cry, make you connect – make you love are communicated through the arts. They aren’t extras.”

But you didn’t come here to listen to me talk all tommyrot about participation rates! You came to see the submissions:


Katelyn and Aubrey Augustin
Katelyn and Aubrey Augustin

WEEK 239 - ART - ANDY SHARP
Andy Sharp

WEEK 239 - ART - ANDY SHARP
Andy Sharp

WEEK 239 - ART - DAWN KRAUSE
Dawn Krause

WEEK 239 - ART - DAWN KRAUSE
Dawn Krause

WEEK 239 - ART - KIM BARKER
Kim Barker

WEEK 239 - ART - KIM BARKER
Kim Barker

WEEK 239 - ART - SHANNON BARDOLE-FOLEY
Shannon Bardole-Foley

WEEK 239 - ART - MICHELLE HAUPT
Michelle Haupt

WEEK 239 - ART - TAMARA PETERSON
Tamara Peterson

WEEK 239 - ART - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT
Christopher D. Bennett

WEEK 239 - ART - CARLA STENLAND
Carla Stensland

WEEK 239 - ART - CARLA STENLAND
Carla Stensland

WEEK 239 - ART - TERESA KAHLER
Teresa Kahler

WEEK 239 - ART - JOE DUFF
Joe Duff

WEEK 239 - ART - BILL WENTWORTH
Bill Wentworth

WEEK 239 - ART - ELIZABETH NORDEEN
Elizabeth Nordeen

WEEK 239 - ART - CATHIE RALEY
Cathie Raley

WEEK 239 - ART - MICKY AUGUSTIN
Micky Augustin

WEEK 239 - ART - MIKE VEST
Mike Vest

WEEK 239 - ART - JODIE CUE
Jodie Cue

WEEK 239 - ART - JODIE CUE
Jodie Cue

WEEK 239 - ART - JODIE CUE
Jodie Cue

WEEK 239 - ART - JODIE CUE
Jodie Cue

WEEK 239 - ART - JODIE CUE
Jodie Cue

WEEK 239 - ART - JODIE CUE
Jodie Cue

WEEK 239 - ART - JODIE CUE
Jodie Cue

WEEK 239 - ART - MONICA HENNING
Monica Henning

But enough dwelling on the past. Time to look to the future. We are all interested in the future, for that is where you and I are going to spend the rest of our lives. And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future! This week’s theme:


WEEK 240 - EARS
EARS

EARS! What a great theme! But what is an EARS picture? An EARS picture is any picture of EARS or something that is affiliated with EARS. Like headphones or hearing aids. Remember, there is more than one kind of EARS and I’m not just talking about how frogs hear with their lungs.

I look forward to seeing your interpretations!

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HOUSEKEEPING


A MESSAGE FROM THE PHOTOGRAPHY 139 RULES DIVISION

The picture has to be taken the week of the theme. This isn’t a curate your pictures challenge. This is a get your butt off the couch (my personal experience) and put your camera in your hands challenge. Don’t send me a picture of you next to the Eiffel Tower, when I know you were in Iowa all week. I will point out that I have let that slide some in the past. I will not in the future. Since it is literally about the only rule.

Your submission needs to be emailed to bennett@photography139.com by 11 AM on the Monday of the challenge due date.

OR

I now allow people to text me their submissions. In the past, I had made exceptions for a couple people that aren’t real computer savvy, even though it was an inconvenience for me and required at least 3 extra steps for me. I am now lifting that embargo because I have a streamline way of uploading photos. I’m not giving out my phone number, but if you have it, you can text me.

It should be pointed out that this blog auto-publishes at 12:01 on Mondays. So it wouldn’t hurt to get your picture in earlier.

That is it, them’s the rules.

A MESSAGE FROM THE PHOTOGRAPHY 139 SHAMELESS SELF-PROMOTION DIVISION

Nobody showed class, taste, and sophistication this week by signing up for a Photography 139 email subscription. I’ll try and do better next week.

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That’s all I got for today, so if the good Lord’s willin’ and the creek don’t rise, we will commune right here again next Monday. Hopefully it will be a very eerie Monday!

2009-10-01

I need to start my post by wishing a very happy birthday to my man Andree!


09-25-07 Wever Wedding

December 28, 2019

Photo Journal - Page 56 Reject

Happy Birthday Greg!

04-19-08

Happy birthday Andree!

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The picture in the folder 2009-10-01 are from a trip I took to an Art Festival in Ames with Johnathan and Logan. Plus there are a few pictures there of Thomas the Tank.


2009-10-01

2009-10-01

2009-10-01

2009-10-01

2009-10-01

2009-10-01

2009-10-01

2009-10-01

2009-10-01

2009-10-01

2009-10-01

2009-10-01

2009-10-01

2009-10-01

Coltrane's 1st Wife's Middle Name

By adding these pictures to the Photography 139 Gallery, I was able to restore the following historic “An Artist’s Notebook” entries to their original glory:

Coltrane’s 1st Wife’s Middle Name

Next Saturday’s walk down memory lane will involve shirts with beavers on them.

Who’s a Big Boy – Chapter 3

This is my final collection of images from the day I spent following the Union Pacific Big Boy a little ways across central Iowa.

The Big Boy is 133 feet long and 17 feet tall. A standard diesel locomotive is 74 feet long and 15 foot 7 inches tall. A school bus is 40 feet tall and 10 feet tall. A standard sedan is 16 feet long and 5 feet tall.

These last pictures were taken just west of Carroll, very near a town called Maple River.


Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

In “Who’s A Big Boy – Chapter 2”, I discussed my big gamble and defeat by the high bridge. Well here is a picture that Teresa got of the Big Boy with the RX0 II:


Big Boy

This concludes my Big Boy photos. Means I need to get out there and take some more train photos in the near future. Don’t care who calls me a foamer.

Who’s a Big Boy – Chapter 2

The last time I discussed the day I spent following the Union Pacific Big Boy from Cambridge to Carroll, I noted that I rolled the dice and lost big time when the Big Boy crossed the High Bridge. I decided to setup shop on the north side of the bridge. There were several hundred people there to watch the Big Boy cross the bridge. Almost all of them set up on the south side.

I decided to setup on the north side because the bridge that the Big Boy was going to cross is the north bridge. The south bridge no longer has traffic go across it. By setting up on the north side, I would have an unobstructed view of the Big Boy.

However, minutes before the Big Boy crossed the bridge, a regular old freight train stopped on the bridge. As if to purposely make sure I couldn’t see the Big Boy. Oh well. There is never a shortage of train picture opportunities in Boone.


Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

For the record, I do some day want to eat at Angry Beaver. 100% seems like my kind of place! Still at least 1 more collection of Big Boy photos on their way.

Week 225 Theme Reveal

Today I reveal the 2020 Photography 139 Calendar images for September and October.


2020 Calendar - September
September

The September image is of the Union Pacific Big Boy. It was taken a few miles east of Boone, near Jordan. It was taken on August 2, 2019. The Big Boy was on a tour to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad.

Details

Camera: Sony ILCA-77M2
Focal Length: 28mm
Aperture: f/8
Exposure: 1/400
ISO: 100


2020 Calendar - October
October

The October image was taken in the Discovery Garden at the Iowa State Fair. The subject is a monarch butterfly on top of a zinnia. The picture was taken on August 19, 2018.

Details

Camera: Sony ILCA-77M2
Focal Length: 200mm
Aperture: f/5.6
Exposure: 1/320
ISO: 400

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If things go right, by the time you read these words I will be somewhere in Illinois or Missouri or maybe even Kentucky on my way back from Orlando, still high from a Cyclone victory of Notre Dame.

Therefore, when I get home from Orlando I will publish all the submissions for last week’s theme CANDID PORTRAIT.

However, just because I’m out cruising through the country, doesn’t mean you should be delayed on starting this week’s theme:


WEEK 225 - HDR
HDR!

HDR! What a great theme! Wait a second. What the Hades is an HDR image?

Okay, so this is the one that I was pretty sure would end the double digit submission streak. If the holidays didn’t end it already, but CANDID PORTRAIT is a pretty easy theme especially when, is there a better CANDID PORTRAIT opportunity then little kids opening presents on Christmas morning?

But none of that answers the question what is an HDR image? HDR stands for High Dynamic Range. Here is a great explanation from Digital Trends:

HDR stands for “high dynamic range.” For those who aren’t so acquainted with this high-tech shutterbug lingo, dynamic range is basically just the difference between the lightest light and darkest dark you can capture in a photo. Once your subject exceeds the camera’s dynamic range, the highlights tend to wash out to white, or the darks simply become big black blobs. It’s notoriously difficult to snap a photo that captures both ends of this spectrum, but with modern shooting techniques and advanced post-processing software, photographers have devised ways to make it happen. This is basically what HDR is: a specific style of photo with an unusually high dynamic range that couldn’t otherwise be achieved in a single photograph.

The best way to think of it is several pictures taken at different exposure levels, combined to create one image.

How the hades am I going to do that? Well, it isn’t as hard as you think. Pretty much every camera (including your phone camera) has a setting that will do this for you automatically. For example on my Pixel 2:



I can turn off and on HDR. Or even enhanced HDR. Look under you camera settings, you can find it there too.

You can also try to get fancy and take individual pictures yourself and try combining them yourself. You can even use an HDR toning program to create an HDR image from just one image.

As you can see, this isn’t an intimidating theme at all. You can literally take a picture of anything, as long as you change a setting on your camera before you take the picture.

It is almost too easy!

Sky

Today we will reveal the January and February images for the 2020 Photography 139 Calendar.

The January image:


2020 Calendar - January
January

The January image was one of the earlier pictures I took with the drone. It was taken for the TRANSPORTATION theme of THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE. The image is of the original Kate Shelley High Bridge and the less pleasing aesthetically bridge that replaced it. This image was taken February 23, 2019.


Details

Camera: Hasselblad L1D-20C
Focal Length: 28mm
Aperture: f/4.5
Exposure: 1/160
ISO: 100
Altitude: 420.3 meters above sea level

The February Image:


2020 Calendar - February
February

The February image is of a pink hollyhock that grew in my backyard. This photo was elected by popular vote to be entered in the Nature category of the Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest. It won first place in that category. This picture was taken August 6, 2013.


Details

Camera: Sony SLT-A35
Focal Length: 60mm
Aperture: f/9
Exposure: 1/160
ISO: 400

We will reveal the March and April images tomorrow.

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Back in March Logan got a dog. A dog named Sky. He brought it over to my house so Sky could meet Naima. Here are a few pictures of Sky:


Sky

Sky

Sky

Sky

Sky

Sky

Sky

Sky

I don’t know that I have seen Sky since this day. It would seem that Logan should correct that.

Who’s a Big Boy? – Chapter 1

Before we get into the meat of this post, I’d like to remind you that tonight at the Boone First United Methodist Church from 5:15-6:30 we are having a soup supper that is a fundraiser for our 2020 Mission Trip to Indianapolis:


2019 Soup Supper Poster

Hope to see many of you there tonight! You can even stay for the Christmas Concert that follows!

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Back in early August, the world’s largest steam engine (or something like that) the Big Boy toured through Boone. It was on its way from Des Moines to Omaha. I took part of the day off and followed it from roughly Cambridge to Carroll. Here is a collection of some of the pictures:


Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Big Boy

Teresa joined me after the Big Boy stopped in Boone for the rest of the trip.

I took a gamble with where I set up for when it crossed the high bridge and I lost big. Very big. But I’ll get into those details in Chapter 2.