There are a lot photographs in the book, so here's the place where I'll show the ones used for the chapter headings and some of the other interesting shots used in the book and tell a little bit about them. The techniques used to create the banners are not connected with the chapters.
Fotoshop – The Squirrel Hill Fotoshop, Pittsburgh, PA. In business from the 1950's to 2006. I worked here for a couple of years during grad school at Duquesne University and learned a whole lot about doing digital photo restoration with Photoshop. Ironically, though this image looks very odd and "Photoshopped", there was really very little done to it in Photoshop. It's a reflection in the front window of the bike shop on the opposite side of the street. I just flipped it (to make the reflected signs readable) and did a few other minor tweaks.
Pink Wall, Riverside, CA – This pink wall and bike rack were shot near the California Museum of Photography. But I really liked the color of the wall and the geometric pattern of the bike rack. Of course, the "graffiti" was added in Photoshop.
The Cathedral of Trees – A few years ago we did a bicycle tour of Northern Ireland with some friends (you can see the rest of my group in the distance in this shot). This is Bregagh Road near the town of Ballymoney. Apparently it's pretty famous for these trees and you can see why. The National Association of Photoshop Professionals selected this as an "Editor's Pick" in September, 2013.
Sunset, Kiawah Island, SC – I was there to run a half-marathon but took advantage of the photographic opportunities while staying on the island. Sunsets are a bit of a cliché but still fun to do when you're somewhere this beautiful.
Pre-Dawn Light, Fairport, NY – Sometimes the best light comes just before the sun comes up.
The Royal Crescent, Bath, England – This is one of the most famous buildings in a city known for its beautiful architecture.
Morning on Grandfather Mountain, NC – Every year I work at the Grandfather Mountain Nature Photography Weekend. Besides judging the photo contest and helping out participants I do get to partake in some photography myself.
Bee in the Garden, Pittsburgh, PA – Just hanging out in the back yard with a 100mm macro lens, watching the bees collect pollen.
After Sunset, Kiawah Island, SC – As so often happens, the most dramatic light comes after the sun has set.
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada – One of my favorite cities, Vancouver is photogenic everywhere you look.
Superbike Racing at Mid-Ohio – I love photography, motorcycles and racing (I used to race, myself) so shooting the Superbike race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio was an experience that was pretty hard to beat.
Hummingbird and Hosta – Staying at a friend's cabin Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, I spent an entire afternoon and over 500 shots to get this keeper.
Geese Flying South in October – It's hard to believe that the place where I took this photo is barely a 15 minute drive north from Pittsburgh, but it's true. It's North Park in October just before sunrise and these geese are beginning their trip south for the winter.
Shanty Branch Panorama – In the south (southern U.S., that is) they have all kinds of words that mean "stream": "Fork", "Run" and "Branch" are the three I know of. Shanty Branch runs off the north slope of Grandfather Mountain in North Carolina and is always a good spot for photography.
Barngate Farms – Another spot in the Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina. I was on my way out for some early morning photography and had barely driven a hundred yards down the road before coming across this spot. The "barn wood" used for the lettering is actually from a weathered cottage door I photographed half way around the world in the Cinque Terra region of Italy.
The Peak, Ashe County, NC – Is far as I can tell, there are two peaks in Ashe County that are simply called "The Peak". So... this is one of them.
Sea Kayaks, Anglesey, Wales – Anglesey is an island in North Wales and one of the reputed birthplaces of Merlin the Magician. Looks like a good place for kayaking, too. (That's the mainland of Wales in the background.)
Stone Wall on Inishmore – The Irish island of Inishmore has more drystone walls than any other place I've ever seen. My guess is that the earliest inhabitants had to clear the stones from the fields before they could plant anything and they ended up with so many they had to find something to do with them all. Hence, lots of walls.
Dawn at Stinson Beach, CA – This is just a few miles north of San Francisco (in fact, that shoreline way in the background is San Francisco) before dawn one summer morning. The misty effect on the water is caused by the long exposure time – about 30 seconds.
Hiking in Snowdonia, Wales – Snowdonia is one of the most stunning parts of Wales. Very mountainous, it's the home of Snowdon, the tallest mountain in Wales. This photo was taken as we were just nearing the end of a long hike that had taken us to the top of Snowdon.
Sunrise in the Dolly Sods Wilderness – The Dolly Sods Wilderness is an amazing area in West Virginia. I camped out for the night under a heavy overcast, hoping the clouds would disperse for some good sunrise photography. (When the clouds disappeared around 3:00 a.m. the moon was so bright it woke me up with a start.)
Rusty Pipe in Galway Harbor – Galway is probably my favorite city in Ireland. While walking through the harbor I noticed this rusty pipe just above waterline. I have no idea what it's for but I love the textures.
Horses in the Blue Ridge Mountains – This was taken just about a mile off the Blue Ridge Parkway near the town of Blowing Rock, North Carolina.
Trails in the Dolomites – Hiking in the mountains of South Tyrol, Italy is a fantastic experience. Challenging terrain, beautiful scenery and great hospitality at the huts ("rifugios") along the way.
River Cher and Town of Montrichard from Château Montrichard – During a bicycle tour of the Loire Valley in central France we stopped in the town of Montrichard. The imposing castle ruin atop the hill in the center of town looked too good to pass up so we went for a visit. The highest tower was blocked off with yellow caution tape but we were told we could go up and have a look "at our own risk". Well, we decided to risk it and I took this panorama of the town from the highest point in the castle.
Sunset on Attic Window Peak – I often camp out on Grandfather Mountain so as to be in a good location for sunrise photography in the morning. On one such trip I grabbed this quick shot at sunset, thinking the really good photos would come with sunrise. But a thunderstorm blew in around 5:30 the next morning and I got no sunrise photos at all.
Sky and Clouds in the Dolomites – This image is a composite of two different photos taken in the Italian Alps of South Tyrol.
Sea and Sand, Kiawah Island – For some reason, a lot of my photos from Kiawah Island lend themselves to the wide aspect ratio format of the chapter heading images for this book. Once again, the wood texture is from that cottage door in Italy.
Indian Cucumber Root (Medeola virginiana) – This blossom is barely a centimeter wide. I shot it with a 180mm macro lens while hiking the Tanawha Trail, just off the Blue Ridge Parkway near Julian Price Park in North Carolina.
Night Time in Jacksonville – Shot from the window of my hotel room in Jacksonville while in town for a conference. A couple of filters in Photoshop give the "painted" look.
Irish Sea Near Rathlin Island – This island in Northern Ireland is home to an amazing bird sanctuary. I took this photo on the ferry ride back to the mainland at the end of the day.
Egret Over Bolinas Lagoon – I caught this egret in flight over Bolinas Lagoon a few years back. The effect that blends the ripples in the water into the text is called a Displacement Map.
Moon Over San Francisco at Sunrise – Very early one morning I caught this crescent moon over San Francisco just before sunrise. Since Chapter 1 opened with a photo of a sunset I thought ending with a sunrise was appropriate.