The Daily Disappearing Act

I had a last minute opportunity to travel to my favorite place and took a path that I have never traveled on. There was nobody around except for the changing of the guard that occurs each day as the sun sets and the second shift of crepuscular creatures make their grand and vocal entrance.

It was me, a raccoon, and some great-horned owls nearby. I I was really excited to see these beautiful pink streaks above these magnificent clouds.

The Daily disappearing Act

Lake Worth Pier 9-27-15

I remember waking up early Sunday morning. I had my usual mental struggle which doesn’t necessarily involve what I am going to eat or wear, but whether or not I should take photos. I am happy where I live, don’t get me wrong, but I am not usually very enthusiastic about taking pictures here in downtown Lake Worth. I am more comfortable in nature without the sound of horns, expletives, and police sirens.

The couple of hours prior to church doesn’t afford me the luxuery of taking photos. Sunday was an exception.

My brother called me on his way to the Lake Worth pier which is about 5 minutes from where I live. “Robby I am on my way to the pier – grab your camera”. The opportunity gave us time to catch up, laugh, and take some photos in between those moments.

Lake Worth Pier 9-27-15

I remember going to this very same place as a little boy. Fishing off the pier despite not having any clue what I was doing. I was more comfortable fishing at a lake or canal. It was more familiar.

This particular morning was busy and it was evident I was not going to be able to setup at the very end of the pier.
I am usually not a fan of having people in my landscape shots, but it really helps to give perspective here.

I find it fascinating how light dramatically changes a picture depending on your angle to the sun.

Here are two other photos from the pier.

View from the Lake Worth pier - Single Exposure - Not HDR

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Storms Rolling In

I hadn’t taken pictures in a while. Meek Micaela​ went to her cousin’s so I thought it was a good time to bring the boys out to take pictures. I needed a much needed mini-minecraft mental break.

I had originally set out for Arthur R Marshall and had some reservations due to the amount of ground we would have to cover. Long distances do not pair well with 9 and 11 year old legs. As we drove west the sky became dark and it was evident a really terrible storm was converging at my intended destination.

Storms Rolling in - Not an HDR

I arrived at Lantana and 441 and headed towards Southern Blvd so I could head much further west and hopefully beat the horrible weather.

Isaiah and Christian were easy to bargain with. All it took was a couple bottles of water and some chips to convince them that going further west was a good idea. I even picked up some spicy chicharrones. In fact I am still suffering some discomfort, but it was worth it.

This was one of the shots taken tonight because the boys were weirded out from the isolation. I left a little earlier than I had planned. We were in the middle of this vast space and you could see walls of rain and lighting approaching. I think it was the lack of video games that was the real motivation…

The night ended dining at the boys favorite place, Downtown pizza, and I get to relax and go through my photos. Perfect day!

“And the Kingdom Fell” Photoshoot

I really enjoyed this photoshoot on 8-2-15. There was initial worry concerning the unpredictable weather, but it provided the perfect backdrop for the shoot.

I am always looking to integrate my subject(s) with the environment and I was pleased with this result.

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Photo shoot with "And the Kingdom Fell"

Night Lightning at Lake Worth Beach – 8-13-15

I was fortunate enough to photograph another storm recently. They are a daily occurrence in South Florida’s tropical savanna climate. The most ideal time for me is when I am able to take photos of lightning, at night, without actually getting rained on. This particular combination is not nearly as frequent. A perfect storm within a storm if you will.

I know my camera is weather sealed. I am just too paranoid about being outside in the rain with electronics. I suppose it’s about as crazy as someone putting plastic on their furniture. No offense to anyone who still subscribes to this practice…

I was able to find a few places at Lake Worth beach that allowed just enough cover to keep my gear dry while taking photos.

I made the mistake of going under the pier and there was a couple under it. A lot of giggling ensued and things were just entirely too creepy so that didn’t last long. I also found out that it’s not wise to try and take long shutter shots when the tide is able to reach your tripod. It makes for a rather unstable platform.

Luckily I was still able to come away with the following photo.

Lake Worth Beach - 8-13-15 - Lightning between Florida and Freeport Bahamas

Magnolia Green Jumper – Lyssomanes viridis

This little jumper gave me just enough time to snap a couple photos before he jumped out of the frame.This was the smallest magnolia green jumper I have come across. I didn’t expect a worthwhile shot because I wasn’t using my extension tubes at the time, but am pleased with this effort.

Magnolia Green Jumper - Lyssomanes viridis


In Florida and other southeastern states, the Magnolia Green Jumper is one of the most easily recognized of all the jumping spiders. Its vibrant green coloring along with that stupendously orange cap and huge, forward-looking eyes give it an eerily cute appearance. But have no doubt, this little spider is a balls-to-the-wall predator, easily hunting and capturing prey many times its own size.

Jumping spiders are small to medium in size, stout-bodied and short-legged, with a distinctive eye pattern. The body is rather hairy (pubescent) and frequently brightly colored or iridescent. Some species are ant like in appearance. The jumping spiders forage for their prey in the daytime. They approach prey slowly and, when a short distance away, make a sudden leap onto the unfortunate animal. They are good jumpers and can leap many times their own body length.

Jumping spiders have excellent vision, with among the highest acuities in invertebrates. The eight eyes are grouped four on the face (the two big Anterior Median eyes in the middle, and two smaller Anterior Lateral eyes to the side), and four on top of the carapace (two medium-sized eyes toward the back, and two very small eyes in front of them). You can think of the Anterior Median eyes (AME) as acting like our fovea, with high acuity but small field of view, and the remaining six eyes acting like our peripheral vision, with lower resolution but broad field of view.
The AME’s are long and tubular, which helps their resolution (longer focal length, more magnification) but which means they have a narrow field of view. Since the AME’s have a narrow field of view, the spider needs to point them in different directions to see different things. To some extent this is done by moving the carapace, but the eyes can move as well. This is not done by moving the whole ‘eyeball’, since the lenses of the eyes are actually built into the carapace. Instead the retina moves around, while the lens stays fixed. This retinal movement is accomplished by extremely tiny muscles.


Lake Worth Beach Night Lightning 7-30-15

Micaela and I were grocery shopping a few nights ago and I couldn’t help to notice the constant flashes of lightning just east of our location. We luckily live approximately a mile from the ocean and  I was long overdue for lightning photos. It was not raining at the moment so I was already considering the possibility of lightning photos. I quickly used my android lighting tracker titled Blitzortung Lightning Monitor. Really amazing and easy to use program to find out exactly where lighting is striking, it’s frequency, etc.

In a matter of seconds it was evident the lighting was situated between between Lake Worth, where I live, and the Bahamas which is a short distance away off our coast in South Florida.

I drove home to drop the groceries and Micaela off and then was at the beach within 2 minutes. Unfortunately by the time I arrived the flashes were no longer constant.

Luckily I will still able to pull of a couple shots.


Lake Worth Beach Night Lightning 7-30-15

Lake Worth Beach Night Lightning 7-30-15

I was hoping to be alone…

Yesterday morning was interesting. I was up at 5:00am and made coffee and quickly gathered my gear to take some photos. When I arrived at the beach the only visible lights were on the pier; otherwise the sky was dark. As my my eyes adjusted I noticed something approximately 20 feet in front of me. I assumed it was a patch of seaweed. As the sun was rising it became evident the vegetation, rocks, etc. was actually someone who was sleeping on the beach.

And I thought I would be the first one on the scene?

My goal was to take shots without any people in it. How did that work out up ask? In utter failure!

Instead the result was the following:

1. Sleeping person
2. Couple in the water
3. Man texting while holding a fishing pole
4. A boat which pulled close to the shore during the shot

All I was missing was a hot air balloon, blimp, :fill in the blank:

Maybe next time…

Looking back just prior to Sunset

This shot was taken after 8:00pm the other night when the sun was already below the horizon. I decided to look towards the east and noticed this varied cloud formation. My biggest regret when taking landscape photos during sunset is leaving too soon. The sun is great and all, but the real magic happens just after it is gone.

I snicker when I see other photographers leaving before the sky reaches this dramatic peak. It’s a gamble; never knowing when it’s going to occur. It can change from one minute to the next in the most unbelievable way.

There is something to be said about having patience…

Looking back just prior to Sunset

From wiki: As a ray of white sunlight travels through the atmosphere to an observer, some of the colors are scattered out of the beam by air molecules and airborne particles, changing the final color of the beam the viewer sees. Because the shorter wavelength components, such as blue and green, scatter more strongly, these colors are preferentially removed from the beam.At sunrise and sunset, when the path through the atmosphere is longer, the blue and green components are removed almost completely, leaving the longer wavelength orange and red hues we see at those times. The remaining reddened sunlight can then be scattered by cloud droplets and other relatively large particles to light up the horizon red and orange.

Out of Memory

Sadly I have a dozen memory cards in my camera bag and too many other adapters… well me and every other photographer on the planet… It occurred to me. If you think your desktop is clean just take a shot at a very narrow aperture and you’ll see everything.

It’s hard to believe how inexpensive memory is compared to 1984 when my parents purchased a Commodore 64 for me. I just pulled the cost of memory that year and worked with looking at how much our current common memory sizes would have cost back in 1984…

Out of Memory?