learning curve

August 03, 2020  •  5 Comments

While watching the SpaceX Dragon capsule splash down in the Gulf of Mexico yesterday, I was struck by the complicated technology dance of the crews - from those on the small boats who retrieved the parachutes, to the men and women aboard the vessel who pulled the capsule onto the deck.  One lone still photographer was recording the event on the ship, and I found myself watching him.  He was wearing at least two different cameras around his neck and several others in different locations on the deck.  I suspect the cameras had presets.  No flash was used, and he was moving so quickly and freely among the other techs that I assume he was part of the Space X crew, documenting the extrication of the astronauts from the capsule.  He was everywhere he could be without getting in the way, a perfectly skilled professional among the other scientists, technicians, and doctors.  At several points, he was using what is called on my modest camera a "live view" mode so that he could see on the screen what the camera was seeing without using the viewfinder.  Being a total viewfinder photographer, I must be honest and say I don't use the live view element, but have seen photo-journalists doing it when they need to hold the camera above them in a crowd.  It beats having to carry the equivalent of a selfie stick.  With that event as well as other recent ones, such as peaceful protests, I decided my lesson for the week is going to be using the live view mode.

Photographing and editing images of my husband, Fred Black's Navajo-Churro wool rugs, is one of the types of photography I do.  But being the great "outside the box" thinker that he is, it was his idea that led me to the live view images in today's blog.  Shooting the portfolio shots of his work from above has opened a new way for me to photograph products in the future.  Rug # 340 is shown here. Fred used a number of the varied natural grey colors from Connie Taylor, the doyenne of Navajo-Churro sheep and wool.


 Below are two details from the rug.  The stripe is a cobalt blue, and the burgundy color of the squares is similar to Connie's cereza negra or black cherry color.  The striping is described as ombre´ or ombrez in French, or blending one color tint or shade to another.  A softer blending, which this may well be, is called sombre´.


Thanks to Barbara, Suz, Donna C., Orlando, Jean and Sam, Wayne, Debra, Maria, and Steve for your comments this week.  As we open the month of August, I hope you are all safe, well, and finding new adventures in photography and life!

until next Monday,


a passion for the [email protected]


Great photo of that beautiful rug. I mostly use the viewfinder, also.
Ingrid Upton(non-registered)
Anyone buying this rug will own a masterpiece and a pro took those wonderful detailed photos.
Wayne Gesterfield(non-registered)
Oh, BTW I sure love Fred's designs and work.
First rate.
Wayne Gesterfield(non-registered)
Yes, live view does come in handy in large crowds.
Large crowds !!! Remember those days when you could be in large crowds.
So long ago, in a galaxy far, far away.

Get on top of your roof and do live view pointing down.
Such a different perspective.

Speaking of new things to do, I have recently started to do a lot of Sudoku. Hadn't done it before. Anybody else doing it?
Since my work background is being a numbers guy, It sorta keeps by Finance Degree exercised.
Steve Immel(non-registered)
It's a treat to learn a new trick isn't it? Live View proved to be very effective in photographing Fred's extraordinary rugs. These tight shots or details render the rugs in a very appealing and abstract way. Like you I am a committed viewfinder photographer and have yet to shoot stills using Live View. It is the mode I use for the odd video that I do, however and lets you see the whole scene without being stuck in the viewfinder. Is #340 Fred's latest?
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