Broug Dadford turns 80!

Posted in Caving, Events, motorcycle, outdoors, Photography, Travel, Uncategorized, wildlife with tags , , , , , on May 24, 2015 by thecaptainnemo

Brug Dadford turns 80! Brug Dadford turns 80!

For many years now It has been a Mother Lode Grotto tradition to Celebrate Doug Bradfords birthday with a trip to one of our favorite caves. He has made this an opportunity to encourage a better sense of style and attire amongst cavers, by making this a formal affair. He certainly makes a dapper figure caving in his tuxedo!

In the cave In the cave

This years trip was a great success and while Doug said he doesn’t intend to continue (it is a pretty strenuous hike, usually leaves me feeling tired for a couple of days after), hopefully others will continue this great tradition.

Once in the cave Dave had fun directing a photo shoot  and I got to test out a couple of new video lights I picked up- overall consensus was they were pretty darn bright. You can check out the results- http://captnemo.smugmug.com/Video/CaptNemos-videos/i-Cfn5hqR/A

You may want to go make some popcorn first though its 20 minutes long or just skip ahead to 12:45 that’s my favorite bit.

Matt poses over the lake Matt poses over the lake

There was still a little water in the cave though the water levels were not surprisingly very low.

Conrad,Rich,Forest and Scott. Conrad,Rich,Forest and Scott.

Millipede in the cave. Millipede in the cave. approx. 6cm

Sun setting as we hike up. Sun setting as we hike up.

lupine lupine

After our great trip we enjoyed a wonderful dinner at El Jardin, though our party filled the restaurant to capacity. I still had a long motorcycle ride before I got home but it was worth it.

 

 

Hunting for Succulents at Huntington

Posted in Uncategorized on May 5, 2015 by thecaptainnemo

Tiny Pomegranate

Tiny Pomegranate

Earlier this year my parents invited me to go along to Huntington Gardens, this time to attend a special show and sale for members of Cactus and Succulent clubs.

Aloes in bloom

Aloes in bloom

It turned out to be an excellent photo opportunity as a great deal of the aloes and cacti were in bloom.

Cactus blooms

Cactus blooms

succulents in bloom

succulents in bloom

There were special tours of the succulent greenhouses which my Dad really enjoyed and even some for sale so we had to load up the car for the trip home.

The rest of the gardens were wonderful as all ways and we enjoyed lunch over by the Chinese gardens at the tea house.

Also we got to see the fruit of Titan arum, the giant flower that apparently only rarely sets fruit so this was a neat thing to see. the giant red cluster was very impressive.

Titan arum (Amorphophallus titanum)

Titan arum (Amorphophallus titanum)

flowers by a stream

flowers by a stream

Chinese Garden

Chinese Garden

We also admired some of the planned expansions for the already impressive Chinese Garden before heading for home. I look forward to returning to visit “The Huntington” again.

More flowers

More flowers

cactus bloom

cactus bloom

bird perched by aloe flowers

bird perched by aloe flowers

To draw or not to draw, another silly question?

Posted in illustrations, Uncategorized with tags , on March 16, 2015 by thecaptainnemo

Fabric, charcoal drawing

Fabric, charcoal drawing

Last semester at Bakersfield College I was told a class in the arts was necessary before transferring to Cal State. I happily enrolled in Drawing 101 and enjoyed it immensely. The teacher chose to have us work almost exclusively with charcoal, a medium I had not previously used. I found the shades, tonal range and ease of use to be pretty good.

 

My rendition of plate 5 by Charles Bargue

My rendition of plate 5 by Charles Bargue

One of the most carefully studied bits of Styrofoam ever :)

One of the most carefully studied bits of Styrofoam ever :)

Ears are deceptively difficult to draw!

Ears are deceptively difficult to draw!

Crosshatching techniques

Crosshatching techniques

Skull and Cross bone?

Skull and Cross bone?

Architectural

Architectural perspective

Portrait of a caver

Portrait of a caver

At last a little bit of color!

At last a little bit of color!

My final project- Game over man!

My final project- Game over man!

I really enjoyed the course and intend to continue drawing with charcoal- I’ve got a new project on my desk right now :)

 

Night in the City of Angels

Posted in outdoors, Photography, Travel, Uncategorized, wildlife with tags , , , , on March 4, 2015 by thecaptainnemo

L.A at night

L.A at night

Since I was driving down to the airport at LAX to drop off my parents I decided to make an evening of it  and drive around taking some pictures.

Venice at night

Venice at night

My first stop was Venice beach. It certainly has a different vibe at night. I especially enjoyed taking pictures of bicyclists going by with led’s in their spokes as the long exposures made for some interesting shots.

Bicyclist at Venice beach

Bicyclist at Venice beach

Even the Murals and graffiti take on a different appearance at night.

Mural with graffiti

Mural with graffiti

St. Mark Mural, Venice Beach

St. Mark Mural, Venice Beach

Touch of Venice Mural

Touch of Venice Mural

Next I headed down towards an inlet.

Waterway inlet

Waterway inlet

Here I spotted this Pelican.

Pelican

Pelican

and while taking the pelicans picture I was lucky enough to spot a night Heron.

Night Heron

Night Heron

I then headed towards downtown Los Angeles, hoping to get a skyline shot.

I worked my way through the garment district and wound up in some sketchy neighborhood.

Right after I took the picture at the top of the post several police cars came speeding past and then were questioning someone just up ahead. I also became aware of huge numbers of homeless people sleeping on the sidewalk on the numerous side streets,  so that was enough for one night, I made my way back to the freeway and headed home.

Big Bird

Posted in family, outdoors, Photography, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on March 2, 2015 by thecaptainnemo

Got an eye on you?

Got an eye on you?

My Aunt suggested a trip out of town to check out an Ostrich farm. This turned out to be a marvelous idea.

While it was chilly in Tehachapi, it was a beautiful sunny day making for some great scenery on our way there.

We started out with feeding the ostriches and that was fun for the kids, especially when the greedy birds tried to snatch the bowls away.

 

Feed the birds

Feed the birds

After a short walk around the farm we stopped at a pen to meet the ostrich celebrities.

Ostrich Celebrity

Ostrich Celebrity

This bird has starred in music videos!

Getting acquainted

Getting acquainted

After our tour we visited the gift shop where they had loads of ostrich related products, feathers, eggs, even ostrich oil which is described as having all sorts of benefits when used on your skin.

finally we headed into town for lunch at the ‘Burger spot’. A great wind up to a fun outing!

 

Keep CALM and enjoy the lights

Posted in Events, family, outdoors, Photography, Travel with tags , , , , on January 22, 2015 by thecaptainnemo

Christmas lights

Christmas lights

Still playing catch-up on my posts. So this is from Christmas. A bunch of the family headed out to C.A.L.M – California Living Museum for their annual fundraiser/ Christmas light show. I think C.A.L.M is great here’s a quick quote from their website-

Founded in 1980 and opened to the public in 1983, CALM displays and interprets native California animals, plants, fossils, and artifacts to teach a respect for all living things through education, recreation, conservation, and research.

And I love going out there to see the animals but the Christmas lights are fun too and make for some interesting photos.

Bright lights in the woods!

Bright lights in the woods!

CALM

CALM

Calm Lagoon

Calm Lagoon

There was plenty of hot cocoa and kettle-corn and the kids really enjoyed the train and merry go round. It made for a very fun outing.

Michael on merry go round

Michael on merry go round

 

Here Comes the Parade

Posted in Events, Photography, Travel with tags , , , on January 10, 2015 by thecaptainnemo

Marching Band

Marching Band

My apologies- this is a belated post, I was hoping to catch up on my posting during the winter school break, but since the switch from Bakersfield College to Cal State only left me with a week and a half off things piled up quickly. I’m back in school, fighting off a cold and hoping to get some posts done before the homework assignments pile up. Going back to November I managed to make my way downtown for Bakersfield s Veterans day parade and take a few pictures. In fact I got carried away and took more then a few which is why it took me so long to edit them all.

Between the various military organizations and their impressive floats and vehicles, most of the areas middle schools and high schools marching bands turned up which made for a very entertaining morning. There were also car clubs, horse riders and of course since this is Bakersfield an off road club that entertained everyone by driving up each others tires as they went.

Hot rod

Hot rod

 

Beardsley marching band

Beardsley marching band

I hear these guys practicing down the street from my home all the time- nice to see them in performance :)

Hmmm-get a lot of naked folks leaning on your truck do you?

Hmmm-get a lot of naked folks leaning on your truck do you?

Parade Float

Parade Float At least they seem to be enjoying themselves!

Climbing tires

Climbing tires

Eventually it was time for me to depart as I’d agreed to join my parents for Lunch at Milts diner (celebrating the 50th anniversary of the diner) So I made my way out of downtown but it was quite a parade.

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