As always, you can click on the pictures to see them larger.
So the last post was all pics taken in the morning; we went back to the cabin we were all sharing (six of us), got cleaned up and ate breakfast, and had some class time with the workshop teacher. Then in the evening, we went back out into the swamp and *this* time we got a boat with a motor that actually worked. (We still brought paddles, just in case.) So here's some pics as it gets closer to sunset.
I love how the pictures look so different depending on if you're facing toward the sun (silhouette) or away (pretty colors). This might be one of my faves from the weekend, I just love the dappled light on the tree trunks.
Trees, trees, trees. So, Lee and I have been shooting in aperture mode pretty much since we got this camera, but the teacher is all about manual mode. I tried it, but most of the time I couldn't get any good shots because some of the settings were off and I didn't know which ones. And I didn't want to miss getting good pictures trying to figure out how to fix it, so I stayed in aperture mode. Except for a few of them, but we'll get to those later.
There's another alligator for you. Since we were in a noisy motorboat, we couldn't get too close before the alligators would submerge to get away from us, which was fine by me ; )
I wish I'd framed this one up a little better and put the bright green closer to the bottom of the frame. Otherwise, I kinda like it with all that Spanish moss.
Sunset in da swamp.
And then I have about forty billion pictures that look more or less like this.
I like this one where it's still a silhouette, but the colors on the sky are softer. So once it started to get dark, we took the boat back in and grabbed our tripods out of the cars to set up to take more pictures of the night sky. My full-dark pictures still aren't anything to write home about, but I did get a couple shots just as darkness fell that I really liked.
OH THE PRETTY BLUES. I have three that are very similar to this one; I think this will make it into our calendar for next year. I'm not sharing any of the other night shots; they were all a bit blurry and Lee's like why didn't you use the timer? And I'm like I don't know how and he's like I showed you how and I said I forgot and it was dark and you're not supposed to turn on lights to check your camera settings so back off I got one good picture okay! And he was like fine.
The next morning, we got up at around 5:20 to apply bug spray and get back out to the swamp for sunrise pictures. The road into the swamp is no kidding 17 miles long, and it was "blue light" just before sunrise as we were driving down it so we stopped to take pictures and this is what I got. And that bug spray did absolutely NOTHING, the mosquitoes were out in force and I'm mortally certain this is when I got the seven or eight bites on my hands. Maybe there were more, but they're starting to fade. Wish the one on my left elbow would leave already, that one is seriously annoying.
These pics were all taken on manual mode, and I remembered enough to set the shutter speed. Longer shutter speed = more light coming into the camera = lighter colors, so I started out at 5 or 10 seconds and then went down from there. I think I took several at two seconds, and then as it got lighter I increased the shutter speed some more.
So if you scroll through those three pictures, you'll see that they each get just a little bit darker blue. I done learnt somethin'!
You can see just a smidge of fog in the lower left corner in this one.
And this was taken facing more toward the east, so you can see the sunrise starting.
I think I should have put the shutter speed somewhere in between this one and the last pic; this one is a bit too dark but the other one could be a little bit darker. Oh well.
I like this one with the fog : )
You see that big blur on the one tree trunk? That's a MOSQUITO that got in front of my lens as I was taking the picture. She was aiming for my hands. Evil little monsters.
After the sun came up, we walked a little ways down a boardwalk trail into the swamp. We saw zero alligators (we could hear them), but we did see several dragonflies and far too many spiders. Hate spiders. They are also evil little monsters. Only some of those are evil giant monsters. I'm so glad spiders don't fly. (If there are any spiders that fly, DO NOT TELL ME SO. I would like to sleep tonight without flying spider nightmares.)
I thought the clouds were interesting on this one.
And just an interesting tree trunk silhouette.
This is a stump in the swamp at the end of the boardwalk trail. Lee liked this one, he thought it was interesting.
After that, we walked back to the car and drove out to an area called the Sills, and then walked down there for a bit where we saw one last alligator.
And we saw vultures. They did not sing "We're Your Friends" like on the Jungle Book, though. And those two on the right side of the tree sat there for at least a solid minute with their wings out like that, almost like they were waiting for us to take their picture.