PANASONIC LUMIX DMC FZ1000 – Marilyn Armstrong

I got a new Panasonic Lumix DMC FZ1000 (25 – 400mm). I got it at a good price.

I’m pretty sure it’s a great camera, except it isn’t at all what I thought it would be. I expected it to be pretty much an upgraded version of the DMC FZ300 — which was an upgrade to the FZ200.

But it’s something else and I’m not entirely sure what.

It’s got a whole new plethora of things it can do, most of which I didn’t know cameras could do.

So last night, while “Singing in the Rain” was playing the TV, I was doing what I usually do with a new camera, especially those which come with either none or entirely useless manuals.

I was taking pictures of anything on which I could focus. While exploring the whole focusing issue — which in this camera is significantly more complicated than I’ve ever seen — I found something called “point focus.”

“I wonder,” I said to myself, “What this can do.” So I flicked it on and aimed it at Gibbs who was sitting in the middle of the sofa. This was our living room in television mode. Meaning there’s almost no light except for the TV and two 40-watt lamps at opposite sides of the room.

The computer (I mean camera, but maybe I really mean the camera’s computer) narrowed in Gibb’s nose, enlarged the area, focused and told me it was going silent because dogs don’t like noise. How did it know I was shooting a dog?

I took a few pictures. They came out  — well, you tell me. Not bad, considering Gibbs was moving, the light was low, and the lens is only f2.8.

The camera then gave me a little onscreen lecture about — I kid you not — babies, dogs and camera noise — and how you should set your camera on silent when shooting them. Also when you are in a place where you don’t want them to notice you.

In slightly better light

Who knows what other secrets it holds?

Stay tuned.

POPULARITY: UPS AND DOWNS by Marilyn Armstrong

Recently, I got “set up” with Instagram. Assured that I could be very popular on it, I set up a password and was left still baffled by how come I can’t use one of my laptops. I don’t have an iPhone and I’m not really comfortable on my mini iPad. But no matter. I could work it out.

All I need to do, is want to make it work. Which I haven’t done.

Assured that I could be very popular, I realized I wasn’t sure I wanted to be more popular. I think maybe I’m entirely popular enough. I feel obliged to respond to commenters. As it is, I barely have time to do anything but work on the computer.

When I have a busy day that requires I do outside stuff — like shopping or cooking or spending the day on telephone hold — I look at my “inbox” and there are hundreds of new emails. I know I won’t be able to even open them, much less answer them. As bedtime rolls around, I delete almost everything, saving a few things that I really want to read and hope I’ll find time for.

Tomorrow is another day. Another few hundred emails will show up. If I leave today’s stuff until tomorrow, I’ll be buried. I may never dig out.

So is that the only reason I don’t want to be “more popular?”

Not entirely. To me, at least, popularity is responsibility. People in my world — online and off — expect me to respond to them, to answer their comments, to pay attention to what’s going on in their world — and rightfully so.

Except — I’m out of time. I can’t do it.

I can not do one thing more than I’m already doing. I’m stretched thin. Of those hundreds of daily emails, I’m able to read fewer than half. I barely have time to entirely read even the few I open, much less thoroughly read anything. Of the (too many) blogs I follow, I read maybe a third of them on a good day. On a less good day during which I’ve got other obligations than computing, I may not get to anything. I find myself at midnight looking at a mass of unopened emails and knowing I can’t do it. I’m tired. All I want is to read for a few minutes and fall asleep.

I’ve run out of conscious hours.

Too much of something is very similar to nothing at all. Having mountains of material to read and being unable to spend any time digging into it is very much like not reading. The result is nagging guilt. This is not what I had in mind.

I don’t want to give up on the people I follow, but I’m in over my head and that’s without adding anything more. So no Instagram for me. No more anything. Garry’s surgery is two weeks away and I’ve got to find time to deal with him and me and our lives. Everything else will have to wait.

Being more popular is not what I need.  What I really need is more time!

DAYLILIES – Marilyn Armstrong

Flower of the Day – July 2, 2018 – Daylily

I got a new camera today. If I should ever figure out how to properly set it up, I’m pretty sure I will love it. It is very similar to the one I gave to Garry, but it has a larger sensor and the lens is only 25 – 400 mm. Garry’s goes from 24 – 600 mm. Otherwise, the cameras are very similar, though mine is heavier. In fact, it’s as heavy as a full-size DSLR.

I have not figured out why it is so much heavier. It’s got a 1″ sensor, but how much could that possibly weigh? I think the lens is a bit bigger, though also shorter. Maybe it’s the body. It certainly feels sturdy enough.

I spent several hours today trying to find specific information in their so-called manual. I found some of the information I wanted, but not nearly enough. There’s no index, so I don’t even know if the information is in the manual at all.

There are functions which are not explained at all. I don’t know what job they perform,  so being asked to set it “on” or “off” is meaningless.

You can see Garry back behind the garden, chatting with the dogs.

I really wish they would do a better job on the documentation. I know it’s futile for me to say that, but I spent a lot of years working hard to make the books I wrote correct and accurate. These flimsy half-assed “documents” offend me.

PILES AND STACKS OF BOOKS AND CHAIRS AND LOGS – Marilyn Armstrong

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Piles or Stack

Woodpile at the sawmill. Soon to be your new flooring

It’s so hot here that a lot of the area has no power. Brownouts. They warned us about them. We’re okay, but down the road, there’s no power.

A pile of chairs with snow …

It’s all the air conditioners that are sucking the electricity to nothing. It is so very hot and humid, too, so it feels even hotter than it is. Rain may come on Thursday. The plants would appreciate some water.

Gretchen Archer’s books

We don’t water the flowers. Our well is okay, but we can’t waste water on the flowers. They will have to make it on their own. Anyway, it rained last week several times, so under the dry topsoil, it’s still damp.

Even in the middle of summer, we know winter will come

The dogs have decided to stay inside. All day. They will go out now that the sun is setting, but all day, they have been on the sofa.

But wait! I hear thunder. Wait for it … Yes. It’s raining!

LOST IN THE DETAILS FROM LOST IN TRANSLATION – Marilyn Armstrong

THURSDAY’S SPECIAL: LOST IN DETAILS

It’s not a macro, but it is as detailed a photograph of a daylily as I’ve ever taken. 

jupiter najnajnoviji

BACK TO THE GARDEN – COLUMBINE by Marilyn Armstrong

I thought the Columbine was finished for the season, but they seem to have come back again. Everything seems to be going around twice. Crazy weather, crazy garden. Crazy world!

So today, let’s take another look at the Columbine again. Because I love the color.

Columbine – 1
Columbine along driveway
More of the same 
Columbine, more 
And finally …
FLOWER OF THE DAY

REJUVENATION AND THE FINAL ORCHID – Marilyn Armstrong

RDP #24 -REJUVENATE

Two of four
Getting the color right is the hardest part. The petals are so translucent, they pick up any other strong color nearby.

We were away for a few days. Three, arriving home late on that final day. It would have been earlier but it was Friday and it was rush hour and the first weekend of summer. Everybody was on the road and it was a slow road home.

All four!
Three of four

But for all that, it was good getting home. It was good because all the flowers were blooming like crazy and, this morning, my fourth orchid opened up.

Four orchids, all in a row
It’s a duplicate with a small tone change. Using more red to catch the purple heart in the flower.

This was the last bud, so I assume this will be the final flower of this set. I’m sure no one is surprised I took a lot of pictures.  All of these are macros.

Will these rejuvenate again next spring? I hope so. I was just delighted that they bloomed. After the long, hard winter, this was such a wonderful surprise!