Slo Mo Action & My First Car Trip

Just a little Slow Motion action today.  Not that freeze frame stuff, but action/behavior none the less.

One of the oldest “gimmicks” for flight shots is to catch soaring or hovering birds at the moment they hang in the air.  This slo mo shot is of a Forester’s Tern.  I did use 1/640th of a second shutter speed.  Reasonably fast but slow compared to the 1/5000th sec. I am seeing today. Also the 6.3 aperture is shallow enough that I had to shoot for the eyes as the dof was too shallow for much more.1aHoricon09d 120

If the water was not clear most viewers would think this Grebe was just floating.  The truth is that it was paddling away and making turn after turn.  This is both behavior and action although it is of the slower variety.HGrebe1 064b

Distant flocks of birds can actually be a nice slo mo action subject.  These are American White Pelicans.6DSC_2699

I’ve caught a lot of ducks in mid-dive but I have always loved the way this emerging Goldeneye still was wearing a hat made of water.  The shutter speed aperture combo left this shot well within the realm of doable action, although focus at 5.6 needed to be right on.DSC_7319b

This male Red Fox just made a sunrise return to his family of a vixen and six young ones.  He immediately cached a rather large squirrel.  It was summer with all the mosquitoes, ticks and other bothersome critters out in force.  This was the last time I saw this hardworking and dedicated male.  I certainly consider this to be action and a sad day as well.7 13 10 072

No, the first two pictures below are not action shots.  I caught this male (shedding)  Mt. Goat at about 14,300 feet, posing nicely in the rocks.  There was maybe 15 more feet of mountain remaining so he turned and proceeded to the top and down other side.  Yes I do consider this third super close shot to be an action image.  Slo mo yes, but action.PicasMarmotsBirds 100PicasMarmotsBirds 112PicasMarmotsBirds 109


My First car Trip

I recanted this story a few years ago on this blog.  I searched my memory bank and have given a more complete account below.

When I was just a wee little child, I had a propensity for getting into trouble with my parents. I am sure I am not alone in that. I wasn’t a truly bad kid, and most of my troubles came from wandering too far, or attempting to have an adventure that was beyond my years.  I wasn’t brave, just curious.  What’s over that next hill?

I grew up in a home that almost always had two cars.  One good car that was bought new and was the family car and my Mom’s car.  A second car that was  old and was my Dad’s car.  I of course got to ride in  Dad’s car a lot.  I loved those old cars and some were so old they actually had running boards. They were great  for me and my friends to play gangsters and G-men, riding on those running boards with our machine guns.

My favorite car of my Dad’s was a 1948 Frazer.  What?  In the 1940s and early 50s Kaiser Aluminum made Kaisers and Frazers.  There were some aspects of the Frazer that was futuristic, and some that were outdated. The Frazer still had an old-fashioned starter button.  Today (and usually then) when you turn the key it activates and spins a starter motor.  That motor connects a gear to a flywheel which turns the engine and starts that engine.  In these older cars you turned the key on to advance electricity from the (old 6 volt) battery.  The starter was activated separately with a button on the floor or the dash.  Our Frazer had a manual transmission and my father made the mistake of parking it in either first or second gear.

I was four years old and thankfully I did not have access to the key of the old Frazer.  That didn’t mean that at four years old, I couldn’t take off for my first ride through the neighborhood.  I reiterate that I was not a bad kid, I just craved travel and adventure.

The old car was parked on the street and I sat behind the wheel pretending I was driving a race car.  As was usual, my father left the car in gear.  With no key, I could not start the motor but I found out I could drive the car. Of course I could not see over the steering wheel.  When you push the starter button and the car is in gear, the starter will turn the motor (not start it) which will turn the drive shaft, which is connected to the rear gears, which turn the rear wheels.  Two feet at a time, I could make the car move.  One push of the starter button at a time, I turned the car out into the street and drove it down the block.  At four years old.

My father happened to look out the rear window of the house and noticed that his car was gone.  He ran out to see if there were any signs that the thieves left behind, only to see the car itself a little less than a block away and in the proper lane…and moving…slowly. The problem was there was nobody in the car.  Well nobody that he could see.  He ran down the street only to find his four-year old son taking his first car trip.  He was happy to see I was okay and to know that his car hadn’t been stolen. Those facts saved me some punishment for sure.  He had his keys in his pocket and miraculously, I had not killed the car’s six volt battery by driving  with the starter.  He fired it up and drove us home.  He was both mad and relieved but I do think he was maybe “just a little proud” as well.  I had shown some initiative and obeyed the traffic laws as best I could.

It is those formative years that make us who we are. I admit that I am lucky to have survived my youth.  That youth is what as an adult put me on the back of horses in the mountains, and motivated me to roam and explore America while expressing myself with a camera.  It taught me that we can’t do everything we want, but we can do things we never thought we could.

Treasure that youth and God Bless,                                                                                                  Wayne

Below we have a photo that I found on Google Photos of a 1948 Frazer.  Ours was black, and worth about $50, this one just sold at auction for $12,000.  The car was actually only 7 years old when I took my little trip.  It had been pretty used up before my father bought it.  Like all of my father’s cars it was always neat and clean and was kept in proper running order. frazer-00001-1

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2 Responses to Slo Mo Action & My First Car Trip

  1. Darlene says:

    Thank you for sharing this first car trip story with us Wayne. I could really see you doing this along with a sense of accomplishment tucked away inside! Happy days, great memories!

    • Hi Darlene! I was pretty proud until my dad walked up, but I could see he just wasn’t as angry as I thought he would be. I just thought it was time I should learn to drive and strike out on my own…lol. Great to hear from you!

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