Here is a map of Pedernales Falls State Park, (courtesy of TPWD.) Pedernales State Park is a 5,211 acre park located in Blanco county, just east of Johnson City, Texas. The park is located approximately 45 minutes west of downtown Austin.
Activities available in the park include hiking, horseback riding, fishing, tent and RV camping and swimming. Please note that during periods of heavy rainfall, the Pedernales river is prone to flash floods. Park visitors should be aware of flood warning sirens and watch for rising water following thunderstorms in the area, and seek higher ground at the first indication of possible danger.
Click on image for full sized view.
The park may be reached by traveling 9 miles east of Johnson City on FM 2766 or by traveling west of Austin for 32 miles on U.S. Highway 290, and then north on FM 3232 for 6 miles.
Focus stacking is a technique which uses multiple photos of the same subject (yet taken at different focal points,) to achieve the effect of all of the subject being in focus in the final image. Here is an example of some photos of Spanish moss taken with a Sony Nex7 and a Sigma 105mm f/2.8 DG Macro HSM combination. (This is a Sony A mount lens attached to the Nex7 using a LA-EA2 adapter.)
I’ll admit that Spanish Moss is not the most photogenic subject, however I deliberately chose it because it is a good example of something that can be difficult to photograph due to it’s focal depth.
The first images were taken at various focal points and then uploaded into a program called Helicon Focus. (One of the better non-shareware focus stacking programs.)
Below is the final result after stacking the images using Helicon Focus. Most of the strands of moss are in focus in the final processed image.
One of the shortcomings of focus stacking programs such as Helicon Focus is that most are unable to cope with moving subjects such as insects, wind blown flowers, etc. Also, unless you have a very steady hand, even on a tripod your individual photos may be different enough to cause problems during processing. I’ve found that focus stacking works best on inanimate objects, slow insects and landscapes. Depending on what aperture you are shooting at and the depth of your subject, my may need up to a dozen or more images to avoid having blurred parts of the stacked image.
For Sony Nex7 Users
The Sony Nex7 includes a stacking mode, though it is not for various focal lengths. The “Anti Motion Blur” mode is for objects which could move, or to reduce camera shake. One press of the shutter takes 6 images, which are then combined into one JPEG. I use this mode quite often for insects, such as the butterfly below which was taken hand – held. (This photo obviously could have benefited from focus stacking.) Far from being a gimmick, this in – camera stacking process is very handy. It would be really nice if someday Sony included some kind of in camera focus stacking which worked with the camera’s auto focus.
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Photo of morning glory flower taken with Sony Nex7 and 70-210mm zoom.
Below is a photo of fall leaves floating in a small stream in Lakeway Texas. Image with Sony Nex7 and Zeiss f/1.8 24 mm lens. Taken on a tripod, 1 second exposure at f/22. Image re-sized for web with Sizerox.
Photo taken with Sony Nex7 and Zeiss 28mm f/1.8 Lakeway Texas
Cherokee Texas is a small town in San Saba county Texas which is home to only a handful of people. It is home to one of the few six man football teams in Texas. Six man football teams were common for many years in small school districts where there where not enough players for regular football. The Cherokee Indians have one the Texas six man football championship a couple of times, including 1973 and 1978. Six man football is beginning to slowly fade out in Texas since many rural schools such as the one in Cherokee are losing population. Despite that, six man football in Texas will probably not go away so easily since it is steeped in tradition and history.