I’ve been looking through photos from back when we could, you know, go places and found a set from the hills above North Tustin during a year that we got enough rain to turn the hills green. There were some really clear shots of Peters Canyon, Saddleback, and even some south Orange County hills that I couldn’t identify. There was a spot that I remember being a turn-out that’s finally eroded away to the point that it’s been fenced off.
And there was this gate, which I think might have been across the road to Camp Myford, a Boy Scout camp on the Irvine Ranch that closed back in the late 1980s. I remember working as a camp counselor for a Cub Scout day camp during the last month — possibly the last week — it remained operating, before the bulldozers came in.
I remember lots of eucalyptus trees, hiking trails and dirt roads, a couple of buildings (though I couldn’t tell you what was in them), a fire ring, and a whole lot of giant pipes that were going to become the sewers and storm drains of the housing tract that was going to be built any moment now. And I remember being told in no uncertain terms that we were supposed to watch our language around the impressionable younger boys (who were, of course, a lot more foul-mouthed than we were).
And I found this article through the Tustin Area Historical Society, summarizing the history of the canyon as far back as the Mexican Rancho system, when it was named Cañon de las Ranas (Canyon of the Frogs) because it drained into the Newport Back Bay, known then as the Marsh of the Frogs.
Peters Canyon was once Canyon of the Frogs
Camp Myford, an Irvine Co. gift to the Orange County Council Boy Scouts of America, was named for James Irvine’s youngest son. Peter’s Canyon Regional Park offers a well-used oasis of wilderness amid the sprawl of development in the North Tustin area…
In 1984, the Olympic torch relay for the Los Angeles games ran down my street in Tustin, California. My family all went out to watch it, and at the age of 8 I took this photo with a Kodak Instamatic. It was the first time I successfully tracked the movement of a subject.
The rain on Friday dropped the annual light dusting of snow on Saddleback. I caught glimpses of it while out walking with J on Saturday, but the peaks were still shrouded in clouds. Sunday, however, the sky was almost completely clear.
I kind of wish that sign wasn’t in the middle there, but my Photoshop (well, Gimp) skills aren’t quite up to it. Maybe I’ll give it a shot with context-aware fill at some point.
It was awfully hazy toward the north, though, and you can see the San Gabriels are fading into the haze toward the left of the frame.
These were taken at the same spot as the loooong snowy panorama from January 2008, the Misty Mountains from December of the same year, and the cloud window panorama from January 2010. (I should really just come up with something to tag all the photos I’ve taken there.)
So, remember this photo of a door labeled “This is not a door?” Last year, someone else sent a picture of the same door to FAIL Blog. Then a week ago, someone submitted mine to Friends of Irony, where Katie spotted it a few days later.
Here’s where things get interesting.
On both sites, people were absolutely convinced that it was “obviously” photoshopped.
No, it’s real. It’s in a small business complex at the corner of Newport Ave. and Irvine Blvd. in Tustin, California. You can go there and look if you want. And of course there are the two photos taken from different angles.
The obvious conclusion is that people don’t really know how to tell whether a photo has been manipulated. At least on FAIL Blog, some of the doubters had reasons, even though they amounted to not understanding perspective.
I was tempted to post a comment linking to this XKCD strip (My hobby: insisting that real-life objects are photoshopped), but settled for requesting a photo credit instead.
Yesterday morning on my way to work, I looked over and saw the San Gabriel Mountains practically glowing with the morning light of the sun. A layer of cloud blocked the sun where I was, making the distant peaks look that much brighter. I stopped at a spot where I knew I’d have a good view of the mountain range.
It turned out to be a really interesting view, as you can see from the panorama below.
District Mountain Panorama
By lunchtime, the sky above was mostly clear, and clouds were bunched up against the mountains, completely blocking them. I was indoors most of the morning, but it seemed as if the cloud layer had just blown northward until it hit the mountains, then stopped.
Click on either image to go to its Flickr page.
Side Note: Stitching
Since Canon’s PhotoStitch no longer works on Snow Leopard, I’ve tried out Hugin again. It’s come a long way since I first tried to use it and spent hours just getting a panorama to break up spectacularly and went hunting for PhotoStitch on the disc that came with the camera! I can’t get it to automatically detect control points on Fedora, but it does a surprisingly good job even when I’ve only marked around 10 or so. The ability to customize things like which pieces appear in front of others, or which projection to use, has turned out to be useful as well.