kdf on April 28th, 2010

The Internet is a wonderful thing. Earlier I posted a short piece about creating more accurate color from the RAW images of my Panasonic Lumix LX3. I admit it wasn’t really that great a post. But it gets more hits than anything else I’ve written. That means that wherever you are, whoever you are, you can help others by just writing something and throwing it up on the Internet’s collective wall. People who are looking for that info will find it.

Still searching for accurate color from the LX3, and feeling bad about the previous post not really solving the problem, I’m back with more info. Read the rest of this entry »

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kdf on April 11th, 2010

This post is nothing more than an excuse to put something fresh up. I recently processed a few shots I took with the LX3 at the Cars and Coffee show in Irvine. I thought they looked nice and so I decided to share. In this group of shots are some of my favorite cars.

Number one is the Austin Healey 3000. Read the rest of this entry »

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kdf on March 9th, 2010

I purchased a Quark Mini 123 flashlight from 4Sevens.com roughly 2-3 months ago. I’ve carried it in my pocket everyday since. It’s slightly larger than a wine cork and it’s the brightest flashlight I own.

Quark123 Quark123 Quark123

It has three brightness levels that are changed by screwing the head in to turn it on. Then turning it off and back on again switches it to the next brightness level. It uses a CR123 battery which can be a bit costly, but they’re available online for considerably less than your local drug store. Read the rest of this entry »

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kdf on March 8th, 2010

This last Friday, the 5th was the first Friday of March. that means it’s a First Friday Nighter TSD road rally night. My partner Lance and I hadn’t done a rally in 5 months so it was time.

This rally drove north from the usual starting point in Mission Hills to the 14 Freeway, then it settled in the Agua Dulce and Acton areas. This rally was a lot of fun. Long winding roads through canyons and two passes through the small town of Acton at night. Read the rest of this entry »

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kdf on March 7th, 2010

The Westboro Baptist Church came back to Los Angeles today and Kevin and his friends were there to meet them.  This time they were out in front of the American Jewish University on Mullholland in the Sepulveda pass.

The WBC arrived at 11:47 from having parked up the hill east of the University’s entrance. Kevin and his friends had parked on the university’s grounds and came running down the hill shortly after the WBC arrived.

Kevin, dressed again as Jesus, opened his giant folded sign that read “I’m with Stupid.”  He sang his own songs to drown out the protester’s songs. His friends engaged the protesters in a dialogue, without much success at convincing any of them in either direction. There were a few car horn honks, but I think they were mostly from drivers upset at those cars taking off when the light changed. There were also a few “one finger salutes” from some drivers.  I’m guessing drivers were mostly confused at the conflicting messages.

The WBC left after only 30 minutes. According to their website, most of their protests are short appearances like this. Their next protest is scheduled for an hour and 45 minutes later at the Sinai Temple on Wilshire Blvd.  After that Kevin and his friends will pester them somewhere around the Academy awards.

I dug out my 80-200 f2.8 Nikkor for most these shots. It’s much sharper than my 18-200. Heavier to be sure, but worth it for its image quality.

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kdf on February 28th, 2010

Back in 2002 my dad, my son and I went to an old shipping warehouse (transit shed)  in San Pedro to see the progress of a pair of Pacific Electric Red Car recreations being assembled there.

Click the photo for more pictures

There were actually three cars, two were recreations and a third was an actual restoration of an original Red Car.  The project included a 1.5 mile section of the original Red Car right-of-way in San Pedro from the cruise terminal to just south of the Ports O’Call village. This project was funded by the Port of Los Angeles.  I happened to be back there this weekend and was delighted to see the Red Cars running.   They look like an old photo come to life. I’m very impressed with their appearance.  It was raining when I took these photos but that didn’t dampen my enthusiasm to dig up old photos of the day we visited the open house. Read the rest of this entry »

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kdf on February 25th, 2010

I couldn’t be prouder of my son Kevin.  He got out there in Long Beach protesting against the WBC (Westboro Baptist Church) from Kansas. This group hates gays, Jews and even American soldiers.  Apparently they’ve gained notoriety protesting at the funerals of returned service members.

The tactics of the anti WBC protesters is to block, annoy and diffuse the message of the WBC.  Watch the video and you’ll see  many conflicting messages including my son the dancing Jesus. Talk about confusing, I wasn’t sure what I was seeing.

Long Beach is great community. The fifth largest city in California and it feels like a small town. A diverse place that values that diversity enough to stand up for it. Go Long Beach!


Watch this video and you’ll see more of the WBC speaking for themselves at another protest outside Wilson High School.  I learned from Kevin that the WBC choose Wilson because that’s where a national gay and lesbian student group formed. Kevin, a recent graduate from Wilson finds that kind of ironic since that group had maybe three members in it his senior year.


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kdf on February 13th, 2010

When I started this site four and a half years ago, I all kinds of enthusiasm and strong intentions that quickly faded. But now my interest has been rekindled by a friend who has started a blog that is actually read (or at least visited) by people he doesn’t know. It helps that his blog www.frontageroads.com is focused on all things bicycle. I hope to one day find a focus for this blog, but until then I’ll continue to share what ever interests me at the time.

BTW. It’s my buddy John’s birthday today. In my life, John has held the position friend longer than anyone else. He’s been my best man, twice! He tolerates our differences and remains a solid steadfast friend in spite of me.  Here’s to you, John!  Happy Birthday.

image of new site design

image of new site design

kdf on February 4th, 2010

This was an observation my daughter made about one of her toys. She was describing a creature’s make up in terms of the animals it resembled. At first her mom, (and I as well) thought she’d described this creature as more than a whole. Then we realized she was correct. She had not exceeded 100%.
I thought about renaming my site to ahalfasixthandathird, because I like how it forces one to realize the world’s a complicated place. That even as we try to understand an issue or event in simple terms, it’s really the sum of everyone’s understanding, that makes up the whole. What a first seems like different parts that don’t fit together are in fact a whole. The good, the bad, pretty and ugly. Cops and robbers, they all rely on each other to survive.

kdf on February 1st, 2010

I’ve been using Lightroom 2.6 to do my conversions. It’s pretty quick, and I love the gradient filter tool. But, I have been experiencing less than desirable results lately, specifically with my LX3. The pictures had either a green or magenta cast to the shadows, and reds were very difficult to get right. I searched the Internet for a camera calibration profile that matched my camera and came up empty. Adobe’s RAW conversion software recognizes the camera and corrects for lens distortion, but it misses the color.

I found someone sharing his camera calibration settings for the LX3.  They’re not for every situation, but they are a great starting place. The settings are:

RedHue -4

RedSaturation +21

GreenHue -14

GreenSaturation -20

BlueHue +3

BlueSaturation -6

I added -6 to the shadow tint setting.

Now I’m applying this to all my LX3 RAW conversions first before making individual adjustments in Lightroom.

But what about Lightroom? Is it still my first choice for quickly correcting a group of images?  I decided to compare it again to RAW Developer and to the new Lightroom 3 beta. Read the rest of this entry »

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kdf on January 31st, 2010

Left the house early to check out the new home of the Supercar Sunday meet in Woodland Hills. It was a lot bigger than I’d expected. For a ridiculously cold morning there was quite a turn out.

There were three Mercedes 300 Gullwings, a Ferrari F40 and this Porsche Carrera GT. Tesla was there with 4 cars and a few salesmen. Lotus Elise/Exiges were everywhere. A great morning for motoring and sightseeing.

I think it’s great how guys with half million dollar cars will get out of the house early on Sunday to share their rides with the masses.

Click the photo for more pictures

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kdf on January 5th, 2010

Well, It’s officially a tradition. That is if doing something twice, and speaking of doing it again next year can be said to establish a tradition.
John, Rob, Ken, Brian and myself met up in Malibu for a day of canyon driving and some quality standing around visiting. After driving Yerba Buena road for the first time, we all agreed it was a must do on our next trip. Lunch was at the Reel Inn in Malibu and was delicious as usual.

Here’s a link to our route through the canyons. You can see from the data there, where we stopped and see our elevation as we traveled.

Kens Cortina as a late 70s magazine ad.

Ken's Cortina as a late 70's magazine ad.

Read the rest of this entry »

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kdf on November 29th, 2009

What’s more fun than going shopping on Black Friday? Just about anything, but for myself and some old friends we took a leisurely drive in the Santa Monica mountains. My friends are all fortunate to have vintage rides from the 60′s and 70′s. I had to make due with my modern car.
We met up with a vintage car club in a parking lot in Malibu at 9:00 am, check out their rides and then headed out on our own.

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kdf on September 14th, 2009

Treffen, is German for “to meet up” or “meet”. This VW meet in Anaheim, CA is in its 3rd year. Featuring cars from 1957 and prior, it’s a very nice collection of VWs, all over 50 years old. A couple of favorites were the original KDF-Wagons from the Hitler era.

And these very cool convertibles, VW Rometsch Beeskow Cabroilets. They were built on a VW Chassis by a German coach company headed by Rometsch. It’s an aluminum body with suicide doors. VW eventually prohibited the sale of chassis to Rometsch to eliminate the competition. VW then produced the Karmann Ghia.
The brow over the front wheel reminds me very much of the brow over the front wheels of my father’s 190SL Mercedes. Not too surprising since Beeskow designed the 300SL two years after this car.

Shows like this always get me motivated to acquire an old car.

Click on any of these pictures to see them more or less full screen. After the jump, use your arrow keys to advance to pictures from this event.

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kdf on August 19th, 2009

A road trip much better suited to younger folks. We left my house at 3:00 A.M. Sunday. We arrived in Monterey at 8:00 A.M. Had breakfast at a local diner and were in the raceway by 9:30. Walking though the paddock areas we were free to enjoy the cars close up. The crowds were not large and it was very easy to move about and enjoy the sights, sounds and even smells of all the old cars assembled there.
I’m very happy with the how my pictures came out. Pretty much every picture from the paddock area was taken with the Lumix LX3. This link will take you directly to my favorite view in my Vintage Races gallery. Use the arrow keys after following the link to advance the pictures.
We left Monterey at about 4 and traveled south on Carmel Valley road. It was about 50 miles of unspoiled California. The road narrowed in places and the center line wasn’t even there. Tight and twisty I’m sure we all wished we were behind the wheels of our own cars.

Read the rest of this entry »

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