Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Trick of the Week and Motion

Dog Blog Post #304:  This weeks trick both builds on previous tricks, and is another step to greater things...

Touch (with your nose)

This week, during dog class, I brought a palm-sized lid with me, and worked on Henry touching it with his nose during "Wendy's Talking" times. Henry can already touch a target stick with his nose, a mouse pad with his paws, and my hand with his nose, so this was mostly just extending existing behaviors.

What I'm hoping to do is attach a name to the behavior (not there yet) and then transition the lid away from my hand and then eliminate the lid but keep the behavior. The ultimate goal will be to be able to point out an obvious object, tell him to touch it, and he'll do so with his nose.

How cute will that be in a picture!

Not quite sure what my cue is going to be, just something other than Touch or Push (I'm open to suggestions if anyone knows of a good word.)

(Sorry about the bad picture - I didn't think about how it was going to look to the video camera, and while I recorded a half-dozen in a row, most where pictures of Henry's lovely fluffy tail and poofy breaches, and not much else!) 

On to the Daily Shoot, and whew! Finally, an "easy" one - or at least one that doesn't require research, strange props, or setting up "the set".

Illustrate motion in a photograph today.

Ball!... and I was fully prepared to take the dynamic duo outside for a game of long ball (at least, as long as I can throw it, which is thankfully less than our not overly long yard! Which is not to say I still haven't managed to bounce it over the fence a few times, but thankfully, just a few, and we have very nice neighbors.)

But it decided to rain.

Or, it decided to think about raining, as the skies darkened and it sure smelled damp, although ultimately very little in the way of precipitation actually occurred.

Anyway, while the outside was trying to make up its mind, I moved the party indoors, set up the tripod at one end of the house, turned on every light in sight, and proceeded to play fetch with Zachary.

I would chuck the Lacrosse ball down the hall (yes, it is heavy, and yes, it does make horrible sounds when it hits things. But my mother doesn't live here, if I break it, I'm already the one who bought it.)

So, I chucked the Lacrosse ball down the hall for Zachary, and then snapped a picture at some point either during the launch or during the return. I had already fixed the ISO at 100, which I hoped would make the camera slow enough to blur moving things, while keeping things everything else as crisp as possible (at least, I think that is how it works.)

I'll let you be the judge of the results. The basic background does seem to be "grain free", and the linen cabinet in the background (home to Mr. Tacky Knick-Knack) appears sharp as well. For reasons I can't explain, Zachary's head is totally crisp, while the rest of him is totally in motion. Henry is in front, being Henry.

Throw It!
Where did my baby go???
You might have picked up on the fact, at the start of all this, that I said I was playing fetch with Zachary. That's not because Henry wasn't in the room, but because Henry is still learning the finer aspects of playing fetch. He has the chase part down, the pickup is clean, and the return is lovely, but he's at the age where, despite clearly wanting to, he can't seem to get the ball out of his mouth.

He's my third golden, and all three have gone through the same phase. Much mouthing of the ball, and head tossing, and head shaking, but it's like they can't seem to figure out how to spit it out. Eventually (10-15 seconds later), he'll manage to let go of it, and then I can throw it again.

You can clearly see Zachary gets frustrated, and at times he looks ready to rip the ball right out of Henry's mouth (but that would be rude, and thankfully Zachary doesn't do rude.) Zachary's solution is to try even harder to get to the ball first, so he can get it back to me as fast as possible, so I can throw it gain. Henry, contents himself with feats of acrobatics (see above) and the joy of chasing Zachary up and down the hall.

Finally, we have the (non-dog) Scavenge Challenge picture - #5: "Cloudscape - sheep in the sky"...

Sky Sheep

... at least I don't think I've shown that one here. Unlike the daily shoot, I can do several challenge pictures at a time, but I'm just trickling them out here.

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Amber-Mae said...

That sky pictures is absolutely breathtaking!

Pup Fan said...

Love the motion photos!

Elaine Pritchard said...

Is that what some people call a mackerel sky because it looks a bit like the markings on that fish? I'm not sure where I dredged that thought up from. Beautiful picture anyway - as always xx

houndstooth said...

I have been trying and trying to get a good sky shot, but there are either no clouds or it's one solid grey cloud mass of sky! Phooey!

I loved your motion shot! You totally captured their energy with that one!

Greyhounds CAN Sit said...

Great motion shot, especially with Zachary's head being in focus and his mouth open, kind of gives it a surreal effect.

Pretty clouds too.