1-15-13 Weekly Photo Challenge: Illumination

This week’s challenge is: Illumination.

So many possibilities, so little time.  I went digging through the files and for this pass, (maybe only, maybe first, who knows) decided to go back to Akumal.  A lovely moon rise.

This photograph was taken at ISO 3200; 18mm lens; f/stop 7.1; shutter speed 30 seconds; no tripod but balanced on a wall.

This is how it looked straight from the camera…


and (here comes the tech stuff) this is how it looked after moving the white balance from a temp of 3900 and a tint of 5 to a temp of 2850 and no tint, a slight nudge (+ 5) to the highlight tones; a push (+ 19) to the dark tones; removing (-100) the shadow tones and boosting the heck (+ 82) out of the light tones.


Some other Illuminations that you might enjoy…

yi-ching lin photography

Wind Against Current

Spinsters Compass

Broken Light Collective

Ruth E Hendricks Photography

West Coast Kayaker

Nirvana Trails

Mostly Monochrome

Ruined For Life

There are hundreds of others – check them out!

12-16-12 Travel Theme: Transportation

Ailsa’s theme this week is transportation.  Lots of ideas and possibilities there.

In the immortal words of Tracy Nelson: “take a train or a plane/ it’s all the same/ just get out of here/ take a bus if you must/ but make sure you just/ oh, get out of here…”


Tall Ships and police boats on the Hudson River, airplane above

or you can try it this way…


Rented vehicle in Akumal, Mexico

Not as fast but a lot of fun.

3-29-11 Post 1(of 2): Off Topic – Akumal

So we returned home late last night from 6 days in Akumal. We are usually a city vacation family with “go-go-go” being our motto, so this was an unusual trip for us.

Loved it!

Starting with our dealings with LocoGringo , a lovely agency, everything was smooth and easy. We went back and forth with them for over a month as they supplied us information on our various lodging choices, worked with our needs and (very limited) budget until we finally decided on Vista Del Mar. This was a lovely little place with a great staff and easy access to everything in Akumal. We are not an all-inclusive type family so if that is your thing, do not come here. If you want to be comfortable, on  the water, plan your own days and just be, cook for yourself on occasion, blog daily -wifi access – this is the place for you.

Moonrise Day 2


Sunrise from the patio Day 4

Our flight down was amusing as we had 6 guys who clearly watched way too much Jersey Shore sitting in front of us. It is hard to believe but they made the Jersey cast look like intellectual powerhouses. The one who most “impressed” Abigail was the guy who kept marveling that you couldn’t smoke on airplanes and added at the end of the journey that they really had screwed up and had not drunk nearly enough on the flight, but, in their defense, they were very polite to Katherine as they were moving their seatback to a down low and locked position…My personal favorite was the youngest whose t-shirt read: “I Am Not An Asshole”. Good to know and thanks for sharing.

Must recommend two restaurants, El Ultimo Maya which is over the bridge in the Pueblo of Akumal, excellent dinner, lovely people who own it and, since, unfortunately for the owners, we were the only people there (it was after happy hour) – and we didn’t object, the cook/co-owner, kept his boom box blasting the entire time, everything from Jessie J to Beiber to AC/DC!  Second place to recommend is La Cocina Economico just before the arch where you enter the Playa area.  A great, economical breakfast.

The Mayan site at Tulum is a marvel and that is before you go down to the beach.

Final recommendation is AKTUNCHEN, a nature adventure.  For flat out fun they have a zip line “ride” that goes over the jungle, but the real attractions are the cave walk and the underground Cenote.

Unfortunately, the underwater snorkeling shots were done with film (how retro…) and are not processed yet so I have no idea if 1: they came out or 2: are any good.  In any case, if you are on the Mayan Riviera make sure to get there.

Just for fun we rented a golf cart and Abigail got her first experience driving.

Unlike many of her friends, she did not crash and she even drove at night.