A few hours in Kailua Kona – Part 3 (the waves)

I’d hoped to cover the 90-minute photo session in two posts, but it turned into three posts. The first post (HERE) covered my encounter with the rusted truck relic. The second post (HERE) dealt with the surfers I photographed. 

This post has forty-four photographs in the gallery at the bottom of the post.  However, I won’t post all of them in the body of the post. I also have seven videos to share, all of them less than a minute long (you know, for them who have the attention span of a gnat). 

The photos and videos are primarily of waves . . . with the exception of the photos opening and closing this post. Those photos are of the rusty truck and the red flowers hedge.

Before I continue, some housekeeping . . . 

Some of you might have noticed a recent lack of contributions to this blog. Some might even have noticed I’m not as engaged in your blogs as I might normally be. There’s a reason for that. 

That reason is also why you might not see or hear much from me in the next four-to-six-weeks. Life demands more of my attention than normal. 

Before anyone starts to worry . . . I’m not sick. No one in my family is sick. I have no lawsuits hitting me right and left and I’m not under investigation (I fly pretty straight; I might not know where I’m going, but I’m heading straight there). I’ve not won the lotto and about to become a hermit. I’m not joining the Witness Protection Program and I’m not scheduling elective surgery to become even purdier. Despite my intellect, wisdom, and winning personality, I’ve not been drafted to solve the world’s problems. I’m not writing a book, composing music, or building a monument to Salami and Cheese sandwiches. 

Basically, I’m busy; nothing bad, nothing good. Just life. 

I plan on dropping a few posts here and there, but it’ll be mostly for my relaxation and enjoyment. Others are welcome to enjoy them . . . or not. For instance, I’ve been processing the 1,300 photos from September 11 (Alaska cruise). I assume that at some point I’ll be done, and sometime later I’ll post a few hundred of them. 

The only thing I feel bad about is that I won’t have time to read all the blogs I follow. I’ll catch a few posts here and there, but whereas I usually read every post from blogs I subscribe to, I’ll probably miss a bunch and — sadly — I don’t plan on catching up when my normal life resumes. 

Really . . . if you are inclined toward worrying about me, don’t. Believe me, plenty of bad stuff has happened since I’ve had this blog, and no one knows anything about it. Heck, if I were dying, the last place I would mention it would be here. So, really, if I didn’t say anything and just dropped out of sight, then you might wonder if I’ve died or lost all my fingers, butI’m telling you . . . it’s just life. 

Now, this seems long, as if overcompensating . . . nope! It’s just that only a few people will read this, and I want to impress upon them — the ones I care about — that nothing’s wrong. The majority of “readers” won’t even get past the first photo and, frankly, I don’t care much about them. 

And now, the first wave photo . . . 

As usual, you can click on the photos and a larger version will open in a new tab or window. And, I finally dumped all of the photos into a SmugMug gallery (HERE) for them who want to see better versions than what WordPress offers up. 

So, where was I? Where did I snap these photos? Here:

The V-shaped complex at the top is Casa de Emdeko. The majority of the times we’ve previously visited the Big Island, that was our destination. It was where we stayed on our first visit here, and it was where we spend the first two weeks here when we moved to the Big Island. 

I got to be honest. I wouldn’t stay there again. For one, they pissed me off because they closed off access to the shoreline but, for another, the complex is showing its age and . . . well, there are better places to stay.

The “X” in the above photo is where I snapped most of these photos and videos. The arrows indicate the directions I was shooting. Some of the videos are from the other side of the pool (I mention the pool because it shows in some of the photos and videos). The building visible in a few of the videos and photos is the one I’ve marked. 

Depending on the direction and the relative position of the sun, the water can appear very different from one photo to the next. I processed them as best I could to keep them somewhat consistent. The videos are where you’ll see a big difference. This next one is the first thing I shot right when I got there.

As a reminder, switch the setting to HD; you’ll get a better version, especially if you go to YouTube to watch it. 

The same advice goes for the photos . . . larger looks better. Click for a larger view or go to SmugMug for the option to see them at full size. 

Hint: if you click on the photo and when it opens in a new tab or window the cursor shows as a “+” (plus sign), it means you’re not seeing the largest version. It also means you’re seeing a version that WordPress uglified. Click anywhere on the photo to see the largest version possible. You should see a change in the details of the photo (for the better). 

Did you see the heart shape? It means these waves love me.

These were not big waves . . . at most, four-to-six feet. All of these photos are taken with the D7000 and the excellent 70-200mm f/2.8 lens to capture details of the waves. In particular, the color and the shape of the water when the wave breaks. 

All of the above waves were shot looking in a Northwest direction (the top arrow in the location photo). These next ones are shoot looking almost directly South. Note the difference in the color of the water. 

Often, the water looks like glass sculptures . . . which is either a testament to glass sculptors or the ocean or both. 

The angle of the camera to the wave, position of the wave relative to the Sun, the amount of white water (from the breaking wave), and metering, all affect the exposure of the photo. I could probably shoot in manual mode, but as I move the camera, the measured exposure would be wrong. I should shoot in Aperture mode, but for me (others might disagree), it works best when I shoot in Program mode with the metering set on Center-Weighted and an ISO of 100. 

Depending on the amount of white and the zoom I’m using, that is sufficient (at least for these conditions) to get shutter speeds between 640 to 2000 and above. My main concern is avoiding blur, and as long as the shutter speed is 2.5x the zoom, I’m generally successful because waves don’t move all that fast and, anyway, I pan them. If it’s overcast or lighting is not as bright, I typically adjust the ISO to keep within that bound of shutter speeds. If I’m using my 80-400 f/4.5-5.6, I’m usually at a higher ISO because that’s a slower lens.

If all that means nothing to you, don’t worry about it. If you have advice on other ways to do it, that’s what the comments are for. 

I like shooting waves and I’m particularly interested in two features of the breaking wave . . . one is the shape of the crest of the wave from when it begins to break to when it crashes after it curls. The other feature is what I call “linear water” . . . 

That’s the back of the wave, where it looks smooths and lined. 

You can see it happen on videos (remember: HD) . . . 

. . . but it’s easily observed in still photos. Often, you can catch both examples of the crest breaking up and forming interesting patterns and the associated “linear water” behind the crest.

Sometimes, you just get the splash . . . do you see the Cookie Monster on the right side?

Still, videos are also fun to watch. The end of this next video jumps around because a particularly friendly wave wanted to hug my feet. Yes, I escaped high and dry. Just before that, there’s a decent example of linear water at the top of the cresting wave. 

Here are more examples of linear water (the first one is one of my top three favorites photos of this post) . . . 

If I’d have to choose my favorite shot of this post, I’d have to go with this next one. 

I mean, it’s close; there are other shots I like (the gallery at the end has more than what I show in the post) like, for instance . . . 

I had mentioned the pool and shown this shot in the previous post . . . 

The high vantage point gave me the opportunity to capture great examples of linear water . . . 

It almost looks like someone brushed it . . . perhaps I should call it “brushed water”.

At this point, I concentrated more on the other side of the pool because I wanted some slow-motion shots and the Note 8 doesn’t have a zoom feature. The waves on the other side were closer.

This next video is a minute long and has two parts in slow-motion. Also, remember: YouTube and HD. Honest, I won’t mention it again. 

I split my time between shooting videos and capturing breaking waves . . . 

The shot above either shows Aquaman surfing inside the wave or a frier from Costco surfing inside the wave. Take your pick. 

This next video is 47 seconds . . . I say that for people whose life is so busy that 47 seconds seems like an eternity and they just can’t be bothered to watch it; if you are one such person, just skip to the photos after it. 

For them wondering about the difference in color and contrast and sharpness, those differences are a product of the mediums and the fact that motion capture is different from photographing a scene. Also, the photos are zoomed into a particular area and hence you don’t get the interference of the other parts that you see in the video. 

The photos are a lot closer to the color of the waves than the videos, although, yes, I do spruce them up a bit. 

I suppose I could invest in a more expensive camera or invest in a proper video editing software program . . . but, as they say, this is fine for government work. 

Just to be clear, that’s just a saying. I have no association whatsoever with any governments or their workings. 

This next video is one minute and has to sections in slow motion. Not as slow as the previous videos. I think this is at 1/2 and then 1/4 speed, but don’t quote me on that as I’m too lazy to check. 

I like capturing the interaction of waves and rocky shore . . . but yes, I still like just plain ole wave photos. 

Here’s the last video; it comes in at 1:10 minutes . . . 

And here’s the last two wave photos. 

I’ll end this post with the reason I went to this place . . . 

No, not the flowers . . . the rusty Euclid dump truck with the ElBob moniker on the bumper. 

I hope you have enjoyed this three parts series and — again — I’ll be even less prominent on the InterWeb than I currently am. I hope people will be able to cope with less exposure to the joy that is me.

Here’s a random poll about car and truck paints. I’m always amazed at the innovative names car companies come up with to entice car owners into buying their expensive cars. 

I’ve always wondered whether — since, you know, I purport to be a writer — I could maybe venture into that arena. 

These are my attempts at enticing car owners by offering unique colors for their automobile investments. Pick the one that would enticy you:

I’m in a hurry and my brain is otherwise taxed at the moment . . . if you don’t see a favorite and would like to add your own suggestion, drop a comment below. I’m sure other readers would appreciate it. 

Here’s the gallery of the above photos (plus a few more):

That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.


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. . .  my FP ward  . . . chieken shit.

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