Dan Kehlenbach Photography: Blog http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog en-us (C) Dan Kehlenbach Photography dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) Wed, 20 Jun 2018 19:52:00 GMT Wed, 20 Jun 2018 19:52:00 GMT http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/img/s/v-5/u122910686-o492538875-50.jpg Dan Kehlenbach Photography: Blog http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog 101 120 Powhatan Creek Morning http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/6/powhatan-creek-morning A morning mist with a high tide made for a peaceful paddle on the northern end of Powhatan Creek

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) powhatan creek virginia http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/6/powhatan-creek-morning Wed, 20 Jun 2018 19:51:37 GMT
Postcards from Spring in Williamsburg http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/4/postcards-from-spring-in-williamsburg Just a few images from spring here in Williamsburg, Virginia:

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) colonial parkway colonial williamsburg spring virginia http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/4/postcards-from-spring-in-williamsburg Fri, 27 Apr 2018 11:18:59 GMT
Colonial Kitchen http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/2/colonial-kitchen With temperatures near 80 degrees and the daffodils blooming, we decided to take a stroll around Colonial Williamsburg.  We have season passes, and it's fun to visit throughout the year and witness the changing of the seasons.  It is also nice to not be pressured and try to see everything in a few visits.  We usually pick on building or trade per visit.  Today we went into the kitchen of the Governor's palace.  They were just finishing up a meal cooked over a traditional fire.  It smelled delicious!  Here are a few images:

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) colonial williamsburg http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/2/colonial-kitchen Sat, 24 Feb 2018 19:30:56 GMT
Pocket sketches http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/2/pocket-sketches Many times I like to head out with a small pocket camera.  These days it's my iPhone or an older Canon S95.  Sometimes I tend to take photography too seriously and having these small cameras fosters a sense of play that is quite enjoyable.  I also enjoy not looking like a 'serious' photographer to be able to blend into the crowd more easily.

Here, in no particular order are some images I captured with my small pocketable cameras.  Some are black and white, some are cropped, but they were all enjoyable to photograph.

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) destinations projects http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/2/pocket-sketches Tue, 20 Feb 2018 15:43:01 GMT
Fun With Super-zoom Cameras http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/fun-with-super-zoom-cameras Over the years I have really enjoyed using prosumer super-zoom cameras by Canon, Nikon, and Panasonic.  Super-zoom cameras feature focal lengths that almost defy belief.  My current super-zoom camera, the Canon SX50 HS, has an equivalent 24-1200 mm lens.  Lugging around let alone affording equivalent lenses in the D-SLR world is completely out of the question.  Here is a practical example of the focal lengths:


Can you spot the alligator?

24 mm equivalent


Here he is!!

1200 mm equivalent


While no camera system is perfect, I find myself grabbing my super-zoom camera when out photographing in nature.  They have several distinct advantages:


  • They are extremely light

I can hike all day long through challenging terrain and conditions and hardly notice my 21 ounce camera.  All of its accessories fit in a small camera bag and I can place that bag along with a lunch, my rain jacket, etc. in a small backpack.


  • Extensive depth of field

The small 1/2.3" sensor allows for great depths of field making close-up and macro photography much easier.  Often I like to depict elements of nature within their natural habitat and environment.  The small sensor cameras make it ideal - here's an example:

This mushroom is only a couple of inches tall.  Photographing this with a D-SLR would have rendered the background completely out of focus.


  • Impressive stabilization

These little cameras have very good image stabilization systems.  Here is an example of a handheld shot at 1000 mm equivalent at 1/60 second.  Not too shabby!


  • Easy to maneuver 

When I lived in Connecticut, I had a favorite bird photography spot along the edge of a salt marsh.  Getting to this spot was quite an undertaking.  I had to thread myself through patches of thorn bushes and overhanging brush.  Once there, I didn't have much room to work with and maneuver around.  Having a small camera on a small tripod made it much easier to negotiate a smaller area.


  • Silent shutter

I really enjoy photographing birds on a feeder.  With my previous setup, the feeder was about ten feet away from the open window in which I photographed.  A loud shutter would have certainly scared many birds away.


  • Working distance

Having a large working distance from your subject is important.  Many times if you try and approach an animal be it a bird, mammal, or insect, it will usually flee.  Perhaps even more important is avoiding altering the animal's natural behavior.  Many animals have a hard time merely surviving, so giving them space is important.

Using a super-zoom allowed me plenty of working distance with this resting Plover.  These little guys expend so much energy during migration and refueling, and being able to photograph it from a distance allowed it to rest.



All-in-all, super-zoom cameras are a lot of fun to use.  Here are some of my memorable photographs taken with super-zooms:


dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) super zoom cameras wildlife http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/fun-with-super-zoom-cameras Wed, 24 Jan 2018 21:14:05 GMT
Winter Beach http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/winter-beach The Ocean is mesmerizing.  When we were visiting Cape May for the holidays, I decided to put together a mini-project focusing on the beach in winter.  We've always enjoyed walk along the beach during the quiet winter season, and this trip we experienced calms, gales, snow squalls, and frigid windchills.  Couldn't ask for better conditions!

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) destinations projects http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/winter-beach Wed, 17 Jan 2018 17:33:58 GMT
Learning from Leonardo http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/learning-from-lenardo This year I’d like to read more biographies.  Wandering through the bookstore a couple of weeks ago, I happened to pick up a copy of Walter Isaacson’s Leonardo da Vinci and glance at the inside book jacket.  Isaacson wrote, in part, “Leonardo’s genius was based on skills we can improve in ourselves, such as passionate curiosity, careful observation, and an imagination so playful that it flirted on fantasy.”  With those words, I purchased the book and was extremely glad that I made this book my first biography of 2018. 

Leonardo da Vinci was a man far ahead of his time and his contributions to art and science are incredible.  Isaacson concluded the book with a list of life’s lessons from Leonardo.  They are:

  1. Be curious, relentlessly curious
  2. Seek knowledge for its own sake
  3. Retain a childlike sense of wonder
  4. Observe
  5. Start with the details
  6. See things unseen
  7. Go down rabbit holes
  8. Get distracted
  9. Respect facts
  10. Procrastinate
  11. Let the perfect be the enemy of the good
  12. Think visually
  13. Avoid silos
  14. Let your reach exceed your grasps
  15. Indulge fantasy
  16. Create for yourself, not just for your patrons
  17. Collaborate
  18. Make lists
  19. Take notes, on paper
  20. Be open to mystery


I can’t help but notice how applicable this is to photography.  Even #10, procrastinate (which is often perceived negatively), when viewed in Leonardo’s perspective, can serve to enhance creativity.  Looking through the contact sheet of my latest self-project Hidden in Plain Sight, I can certainly identify with at least 10 of these lessons.

Each year I start off with a new Moleskine notebook to carry with me to jot down notes, ideas, and ramblings.  This list is on the first page, and I intend to refer to it often.

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) hidden in plain sight projects http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/learning-from-lenardo Wed, 10 Jan 2018 13:00:00 GMT
Hulls http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/hulls I was listening to an interesting podcast by Lenswork magazine that explained different ways to identify personal projects.  One of their tips was to go through your Lightroom collections and see if you can identify any commonalities.  I enjoy photographing nautical subjects, and discovered that I had a couple dozen pictures of hull close-ups.  I thought this might be a fun mini-project.  They are interesting to photograph and full of textures, patterns, and if they could talk, could surely share some stories.  Here are a few:

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) nautical projects http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/hulls Mon, 08 Jan 2018 13:45:00 GMT
Ongoing project: Blending In http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/ongoing-project-blending-in Blending In is a project I started a couple of years back that has been a lot of fun.  I have been inspired by Art Wolf's book Vanishing Act, and thought it might be fun to try something similar.  


For many thousands of years, the very survival of many animal species has depended on their ability to blend into the environment in order to catch prey, or become prey themselves.


Here are a couple of photographs from the project.  Can you spot the animal (or animals)?

*Updated 1/6/18 with new images


dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) projects wildlife http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/ongoing-project-blending-in Sat, 06 Jan 2018 12:30:00 GMT
Snowy Owl - Cape May, NJ http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/snowy-owl---cape-may-nj Last week LuAnn and I decided to visit Cape May for the holidays.  We were stationed there for back-to-back tours from 1996-2002.  Known primarily as a summer resort, we’ve come to enjoy the seaside town during the slower months.

There are several parks and trails around town that are nice to explore.  We made it a point to go down to Cape May Point State Park and stroll the beaches (when the temperatures climbed out of the 20s and the winds were less than 40mph!).  One of those strolls we came across a Snowy Owl on the beach and were able to get several photographs from a respectable distance, but I was concerned.  It was sitting on the beach with its wings splayed out.  Since this was on state park property, we went to talk to the park ranger.  They were going to contact the Audubon society, but she seemed to think that it was covering its prey.  Bob Armstrong, a good friend of mine, and a biologist/naturalist based in Alaska indicated that these owls often head south when their normal food in the Arctic is not as plentiful.

Seeing such a beautiful bird is always a rewarding experience.  Here are a couple of photos:

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) cape may wildlife http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/snowy-owl---cape-may-nj Thu, 04 Jan 2018 20:12:43 GMT
Hidden in Plain Sight - Day 36: Last Day http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-36-last-day

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) hidden in plain sight http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-36-last-day Wed, 03 Jan 2018 11:48:51 GMT
Hidden in Plain Sight - Day 35 http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-35

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) hidden in plain sight http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-35 Wed, 03 Jan 2018 11:47:46 GMT
Hidden in Plain Sight - Day 34 http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-34

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) hidden in plain sight http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-34 Wed, 03 Jan 2018 11:47:14 GMT
Hidden in Plain Sight - Day 33 http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-33

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) hidden in plain sight http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/1/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-33 Wed, 03 Jan 2018 11:46:37 GMT
Hidden in Plain Sight - Day 32 http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2017/12/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-32

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) hidden in plain sight http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2017/12/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-32 Sun, 31 Dec 2017 12:30:00 GMT
Hidden in Plain Sight - Day 31 http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2017/12/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-31

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) hidden in plain sight http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2017/12/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-31 Sat, 30 Dec 2017 12:30:00 GMT
Hidden in Plain Sight - Day 30 http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2017/12/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-30

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) hidden in plain sight http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2017/12/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-30 Fri, 29 Dec 2017 12:30:00 GMT
Hidden in Plain Sight - Day 29 http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2017/12/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-29

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) hidden in plain sight http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2017/12/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-29 Thu, 28 Dec 2017 12:30:00 GMT
Hidden in Plain Sight - Day 28 http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2017/12/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-28

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) hidden in plain sight http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2017/12/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-28 Wed, 27 Dec 2017 12:30:00 GMT
Hidden in Plain Sight - Day 27 http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2017/12/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-27

dan.kehlenbach@mac.com (Dan Kehlenbach Photography) hidden in plain sight http://dankehlenbach.zenfolio.com/blog/2017/12/hidden-in-plain-sight---day-27 Tue, 26 Dec 2017 12:30:00 GMT