Category Archives: Katie Rose

Stories that weave through my blog

I’ve been writing this blog since 2005, which is to say over twelve years. Sometimes there’s more, and sometimes I have less to say, but the average is about ten stories a month. That’s quite a bit of material; back-of-the-envelope it comes to more than 1,400 stories.

Of course, some are more weighty than others. But it will probably come as no surprise that some stories are serial and sequential, and build on each other through an adventure or fraught life event. 

Kumano Sanzen Roppyaku Po © Harold Davis

Kumano Sanzen Roppyaku Po © Harold Davis

The purpose of this meta-blog story is to point out a few of these embedded series, and to show you where you might start reading if you are interested.

The Birth of Katie Rose—My daughter was born very prematurely, and we didn’t know if she would survive. I photographed her in the NICU, and wrote about what was happening in real-time. You can start with First Look or The Birth of Katie Rose Davis (written after she came home and was out of danger).

Hands © Harold Davis

Hiking the Kumano Kodo—In 2013 I hiked the famous Kumano kodo pilgrimage trail in Japan. You can read about some of my adventures in Japan starting with Noriko Tries to Poison Me, and read about my hike starting with On the Kumano kodo.

Tree and Reflection, Nara © Harold Davi

Tree and Reflection, Nara © Harold Davis

Camino de Santiago—More recently, in the spring of 2018, I hiked a portion of this famous pilgrimage trail in Spain. My pilgrimage story starts with Beginning My Compostela.

Romanesque Bridge along the Camino © Harold Davis

Does the Wilderness Care About Me?—Back in 2005, I launched myself on an ill-prepared early season venture into the Ansel Adams Wilderness. I survived to tell the tale that starts in A Walk on the Wild Side.

Alone I Stand © Harold Davis

Vietnam—In 2017 I visited Vietnam with my longtime friend Eric. Our ostensible goal was to visit the largest cave in the world, Son Doong. Along the way, we saw many strange and wondrous things, starting with the Long Bien Bridge that was important during the American-Vietnamese war because it connects Hanoi by rail with the port of Haiphong.

Son Doong Cave © Harold Davis

Cuba—In 2009 I visited Cuba with a photography group. You can read some of my observations starting with Fifty Years after the Cuban Revolution.

On the Cover © Harold Davis

 

Also posted in Cuba, Japan, Vietnam, Writing

Katie Rose and the Swallow

Alas, Katie has had a sinus infection, and antibiotics have been prescribed. She has graduated from solution to pills, but she does not like swallowing them, and makes a production out of it twice a day! Katie is the youngest in our family, and I am always amazed at how fast the years go, and how slow it sometimes seems (simultaneously!). I picture time as a river, with rapids and slow-moving water in stretches that occupy the same topography.

Katie Rose contemplating the swallow © Harold Davis

Also posted in Kids

I Heart Mom

Here’s a portrait of her Mom that Katie Rose made using her pastels. I can sure see the spirit and the likeness in this drawing!

I &#9829 Mom © Katie Rose Davis

I Heart Mom © Katie Rose Davis

Katie and Mask

Katie Rose loves to draw and paint, and make things like the mask shown in the photo. If you ask her, she’ll tell you she wants to be an artist when she grows up.

Katie and Mask © Harold Davis

Katie and Mask © Harold Davis

Also posted in Kids

Achieving Your Potential As a Photographer is now available

My new book, Achieving Your Potential As a Photographer: A Photographer’s Creative Companion and Workbook, is now available and shipping. Per our family tradition, Katie Rose is shown with the new book cover. In addition to my images and words of wisdom, Achieving Your Potential includes a 48-page tear-out section you can use as your personal photography workbook to enhance your creativity. A pre-publication review in Rangefinder Magazine put it this way: “The indomitable Harold Davis—fine-art photographer, author, educator, all-around oracle—[has] now added to his extraordinary canon an interesting fusion of photographic wisdom and down-home advice.”

© Harold Davis

Katie Rose with Achieving Your Potential cover © Harold Davis

For me, a trip down memory lane, here are some previous book covers with Katie Rose: Monochromatic HDR Photography; Creating HDR Photos; Photographing Flowers; Creative Landscapes; Photoshop Darkroom 2; Creative Portraits; Photoshop Darkroom; and Creative CompositionHa! Good thing Phyllis and I had Katie’s help with all these books, otherwise we never could have gotten ’em done.

Also posted in Writing

My Karate Kids

My Karate kids and Karate spouse, Phyllis, Julian, Nicky, Mathew, and Katie Rose are shown at the Rohai Dojo in Berkeley, California where my family learns Cuong Nhu, a Vietnamese form of Karate that blends “hard” and “soft” for a complete, well-rounded martial art.

Also posted in Kids

Katie on the hiking trail

On a beautiful spring Sunday with glorious clouds and shifting light I took my four kids for a hike in Tilden Park. We parked a car near Lake Anza (Phyllis helped with the logistics), then drove to the trail head at Little Farm. We walked around Jewel Lake, ascended the Upper Packrat Trail, switched to the Memory Trail, crossed Canyon Drive, turned left on Selby Trail, and proceeded on Selby Trail back to the parked car. You can see a park trail map by clicking here (opens in a new window).

Katie on the hiking trail © Harold Davis

Katie on the hiking trail © Harold Davis

The route was probably about three or four miles, with plenty of up and down, and tired us all out. But the kids did wonderfully, with only a little whining from Katie towards the end, and only a little stick-and-sword play from the boys.

The image was photographed using my iPhone camera, and processed on my iPhone.

Also posted in Hiking, iPhone, Kids, Photography

Katie Rose, Photographer

Mommy was very tired. Mommy gets up most days at 5:30 am to get the four kids to school, ferries them to karate, and works hard too. So Mommy went upstairs for a short nap.

Stuffy Study #1 © Katie Rose Davis

Stuffy Study #1 © Katie Rose Davis

Katie Rose, now six years old, knew Mommy needed her nap. When she was a little younger, Katie might have kept her mom from napping so she could play with her. If Katie had been sleepy, too, she would have snuggled in for a nap herself with mommy and her favorite blanket.

Stuffy Study #2 © Katie Rose Davis

Stuffy Study #2 © Katie Rose Davis

But neither of these were the case. Katie Rose had an idea of what to do. Once her mommy had fallen sound asleep, she went and gathered all her stuffed animals (a/k/a “stuffies”) and brought them en masse up to her mom’s bedroom.

Stuffy Study #3 © Katie Rose Davis

Stuffy Study #3 © Katie Rose Davis

Next, she went hunting for her mom’s iPhone. She found it in a side pocket of her mom’s purse. Heading back upstairs with the iPhone, she proceeded to arrange her stuffies in situ for portraiture, and used the iPhone camera to make a series of about 24 photos, ten of which you see here.

Stuffy Study #4 © Katie Rose Davis

Stuffy Study #4 © Katie Rose Davis

No adults intervened, or were even aware of what Katie Rose was doing until after her mom woke up, when Katie Rose showed her the photos on her Mommy’s iPhone.

Stuffy Study #5 © Katie Rose Davis

Stuffy Study #5 © Katie Rose Davis

This is a true story, and Katie Rose’s very first copyright notices. There will be a limited edition of prints (just kidding!).

Stuffy Study #6 © Katie Rose Davis

Stuffy Study #6 © Katie Rose Davis

Stuffy Study #7 © Katie Rose Davis

Stuffy Study #7 © Katie Rose Davis

Stuffy Study #8 © Katie Rose Davis

Stuffy Study #8 © Katie Rose Davis

Stuffy Study #9 © Katie Rose Davis

Stuffy Study #9 © Katie Rose Davis

Stuffy Study #10 © Katie Rose Davis

Stuffy Study #10 © Katie Rose Davis

Katie Rose and the ice cream cone

What fun to pick Katie Rose up at her pre-school, and wander down the coastal range by footpaths, steps and stairs. To watch her pleasure at an ice cream treat, and to sit on a bench in downtown Kensington, California near the big ice cream cone as she enjoys every last lick and crumb!

Katie and Cone © Harold Davis

Katie and Cone © Harold Davis

She starts Kindergarten in a matter of weeks, and it is always appropriate to remember her beginnings, and to be happy with gratitude for her compelling life force.

Meanwhile, Mathew isn’t exactly happy with his braces, but he understand the necessity, bears them with surprising fortitude, and enjoys showing off their color coordination.

Mathew © Harold Davis

Mathew © Harold Davis

Also posted in Kids

Kate Rose is doing fine!

From time to time I get asked for a follow up on the story of Katie Rose from people—both strangers and those I know—who remember how she was born. Katie Rose is doing just fine, which counts as a major miracle in my book, considering that she was born at one pound with complete cardiac and lung failure. She’s shown here via a recent iPhone capture in the playground.

Katie Rose in the playground via iPhone © Harold Davis

Katie Rose in the playground via iPhone © Harold Davis

For me, whenever things seem hard in the world or I am unhappy, I remember that miracles do indeed happen in real life—and Katie Rose is here to prove it!

Related: The Story of Katie Rose book; Katie Rose category on my blog.

Also posted in iPhone, Kids Tagged , |

Advance copy of Monochromatic HDR Photography

I am very pleased to post the traditional photo of Katie Rose holding a fresh, still smelling of printer’s ink advance copy of Monochromatic HDR Photography. The publisher is Focal Press, and the formal publication date is October 22, 2013. I am very pleased with the way the book came out, and I think you will find that it contains some unique techniques and ideas, as well as my imagery.

Katie Rose and advance copy of Monochromatic HDR Photography

Katie Rose and the advance copy of Monochromatic HDR Photography

Also posted in Writing

Happy Fisheye Family

Every once in a while a photographic gadget comes along that is simply so silly, and such a kluge, that I have to try it! After all, photography is about having fun, and not just about making “serious” images. In that spirit, I ordered a set of auxillary lens for the camera in my iPhone from the always-fun Photojojo.

Mathew with iPhone Fisheye © Harold Davis

Mathew with iPhone Fisheye © Harold Davis

The set of lens arrived via UPS in an envelope with a plastic dinosaur. I’m not sure what message the dinosaur was intended to send, but it was kind of fun—part of the point of the affair. The set comes with a telephoto lens, a wide-angle lens that unscrews to reveal also an extreme macro lens, and a fisheye lens. Note that the zoom facility within the iPhone itself is purely digital, and doesn’t provide any optical differentiation; hence, the desirability of a set of auxiliary lenses that do work optically.

Katie Rose with iPhone Fisheye © Harold Davis

Katie Rose with iPhone Fisheye © Harold Davis

The way this accessory lens set attaches to the iPhone is that you stick a magnetic disk that has glue on one side onto your iPhone around the camera optics. If the idea of gluing something to your iPhone gives you the creeps, then this isn’t for you!

Phyllis with iPhone Fisheye © Harold Davis

Phyllis with iPhone Fisheye © Harold Davis

Each lens is magnetized and snaps onto the magnetic side of the disk. This works reasonably well. So far, I’ve had most fun with the fisheye lens, shown in these images. The kids wanted their iPhone fisheye picture taken while they mugged for the camera, and I used a tripod to make a self-portrait.

Who knew that the audio cable of an iPhone can also double as a cable release? Maybe you do, but I didn’t. To make this trick work, with the camera app active and the ear buds plugged in, press the “up” volume button on the ear buds wire (indicated by the + symbol).

Well, if this all sounds pretty jerry-rigged, it is truly not the sturdiest setup in town. But it is fun while it lasts, and look at it this way: they laughed when Leica first introduced the 35mm camera, and also called it a “toy.” In photography, toys have a way of sometimes outlasting “serious” gear.

Self Portrait with iPhone Fisheye © Harold Davis

Self Portrait with iPhone Fisheye © Harold Davis

Wonder whether I’ll be using these photos as blackmail when my kids are older? Me too. Here are some other fisheye shots of Katie Rose and the family from a few years back, shot with a conventional camera and the Nikon 10.5mm digital fisheye.

Also posted in iPhone, Kids, Photography

Katie Rose does Cuong Nhu

Here’s Katie Rose in her Tiger Team outfit, ready to take on the world!

Kate Rose does Cuong Nhu

Also posted in Kids, Photography

Katie Rose is Five

Yesterday we celebrated Katie’s fifth birthday with parties at Step One (her preschool) and at home. Katie Rose is a charming, wonderful little girl—and living proof that there are miracles.

Katie Rose is 5 © Harold Davis

Katie Rose is 5 © Harold Davis

How time flies! Five years ago we were caught in that country where the boundaries of life and death come close. How reassuring it would have been to look forward those years to see her now.

Click here to read more about The Story of Katie Rose.

Also posted in Kids, Photography

Katie Rose in Tiger Paint

Up at Step One, Amber face-painted all the pre-schoolers. Our Katie Rose became a tiger—not inappropriate for someone born with her fierce life force and will to survive. She’s also very sweet, at least when she gets her way!

Katie Rose in Tiger Paint by Harold Davis

Katie Rose in Tiger Paint © Harold Davis

I’ll miss Katie and her brothers very much while I am away—but I’m glad to know they’ll be doing well, and that I’ll be coming home to Phyllis and the kids.

Also posted in Kids