In the last 6 weeks, I have had a chance to visit Joshua Tree National Park, The Salton Sea, Palm Desert, San Jacinto, Boa Grande, Captiva Island and Red Rock Canyon.  I have photographed glorious sunrises and sunsets, full moons, crescent moons and half moons and I am slowly learning how a camera really works.  I have seen great architecture as well as nature at its best.  I feel privileged to have captured some of those moments and share some highlights with you in this special travel issue. In This Issue
May 2013

The Moon

The Sun

Memorial Day

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Greetings. Welcome to our Newsletter! We wanted to share the many photos we have taken of places, people and things throughout the country and beyond. Each month, our headline photo will be something new and different. The caption will present a small explanation. We hope you enjoy. We do not want to waste your time. Articles will contain generally less than 250 words. Please have a look and give us your feedback. By all means, forward to a friend using the link at the bottom of the Newsletter. Thanks. Questions? Send me an email!


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The Moon

On April 25th, 2013 I had the chance to visit Joshua Tree National Park with my tripod and my camera.  Not knowing a lot Moonabout what I was doing but having some great help from my brothers, we all set out to shoot the moon.  I tried various automatic settings which failed to capture anything but a white light in the sky.  I tried aperture priority which didn't seem to work.  I played with my ISO settings and the higher I set them, the worse things got.  I then settled in on shutter priority so I could choose how long the shutter would remain open.  As with high ISO settings, I found the longer I let the shutter stay open, the whiter the moon got and the blurrier it became.  Truth be told, it is a moving object. But, it started making sense.  With my zoom all the way out to 300mm, I started reducing the length of time the shutter remained open.   By 10:30pm, I set the shutter speed down to 1/640th of a second with a low ISO of 200 and f/5.6, these settings seemed to give me the best results.  I was able to get the definition of the craters that I had been looking for.  I was pleased.

Click on the picture and you can see the original cropped version.

 My camera is a Nikon D7100 24 mega-pixel camera with a 18-300 f3.5-5.6 lens. And again last week, I was able to catch the moon - or at least half of it on a clear night in Bonita Springs, FL. Again 1/640th of a second shutter speed at f/6.3, but this time ISO was set to 3200.  I was again able to capture the craters clearly Half Moon-especially along the edges.  You will note that the sky was still light. This picture was taken shortly after sunset around 8:25pm.


The moon is really fascinating. It is said that if it were not for the moon and the global changes in tides, that life may never have been possible on earth. Although I have never been a follower of astrology, the moon governs the zodiac sign of Cancer.  Is it a coincidence that I am a cancer? 


And not only does the moon circle the earth, but it also rotates.  However, rotations match its orbit, so even though it rotates, it always shows us the same face.




The Sun

I love sunrise and sunset.  To me, it is the very best of every day.  Each one is different depending on the temperature, the  Sun through Palmclouds, the humidity, and of course, the landscape.  Looking at the sun fall through the trees (as in the first picture) is always wonderful, but seeing the sun fall into the horizon is, to me, the very best.


Especially when the clouds are ominous like in the second picture.  All three of these pictures where taken on the west coast of Florida and over the Gulf of Mexico.


What really thrilled me this year is that I was able to get a picture of the mysterious green flash that may appear at sunrise or sunset when the conditions are just right.  May 16th was just such a night.  It was a dry hot day with no clouds in sight.  At 8:00pm on a sunset cruise, the sun fell swiftly into the sea.  I was ready, my camera at full zoom. As we swayed gently, I shot 60 plus shots of the falling sun.  In a single split second, the last picture I Clouds at dusktook captured the change of color from yellow to green as the spectrum of the sun fell through the atmosphere. 


Click on any of these pictures to see the full image. 


The color in these pictures has not been altered.  The green that you see in the last picture is caused by the light of the sun traveling through the earth's atmosphere.  Like you see in a rainbow, the atmosphere acts like a prism separating the light into different colors.  The green is the last spectrum of light you will probably ever see and it is difficult to see with the naked eye. 


It is such a fascination that Jules Verne wrote a book, The Green Ray, in 1882.  A French film of the same name was Green Flashproduced in 1986 where the climax of the movie is the viewing of the green flash. According to Jules Verne, when one sees a rare green flash at sunset - our own thoughts and those of others are revealed as if by magic.  I hope you all have the chance to see this phenomena and share your thoughts with those around you.



Memorial Day

Originally known as Decoration Day and sometimes referred to as Remembrance Day, Memorial Day has been around Memorial Daysince the days of the Civil War.  It was first observed on May 30, 1868 when flowers were placed on the graves of the Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.  It is observed today for all those that have died serving our country.

Preceeding each Memorial Day since 1948, every available soldier in the 3rd U.S. Infantry places small flags on more than 260,000 graves at Arlington National Cemetery. A tradition known as "flags in". They patrol the grounds 24 hours a day insuring that all flags remain standing through the weekend..

A resolution was passed in December 2000 which asks that at 3PM local time, for all Americans to voluntarily and informally observe in their own way a moment of remembrance and respect, pausing from whatever they are doing for a moment of silence or listening to Taps.


If any of the information here is of interest to you, please drop us a note. If you would like to see specific information on technology issues that affect you and your business, please let us know.


Robert McKay Jones
50 Leominster Road
Suite #3
Sterling, Massachusetts 01564


Copyright 2013
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All Photographs Copyright 2013 by Robert McKay Jones
Artists Sketch byBruce Davidson

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