Beaches, birdies and bikinis

Look, I know I’ve been going on and on about my Florida vacation.  But I need to focus on it so that I’m not focusing on other things.  If you know what I mean.

And that includes the remainder of the photos from my cameras.

I spent Memorial Day at Flagler Beach, along Florida’s Central Coast.  I figured each camera I brought would provide different views of the sunshine coast.

And I started at 6:00 in the morning with my Nikon Df camera right on the shoreline, focusing along the horizon to get the sunrise off the water.

Flagler Beach sunrise
Flagler Beach Sunrise. Nkon Df camera, Vivitar 19mm f/3.8 lens. Photo by Chuck Miller.


Wow.  Scuse me while I dance.

I took a few more photos, then ate some breakfast at a nearby eatery called the Funky Pelican.  I asked the server for the local morning cuisine, as I could eat bacon and eggs back home.  She recommended I try the shrimp and grits.  I’m glad she did.

I went back to the car and swapped cameras – this time pulling the Nimslo for some three-dimensional film photos.  Since there were birdies on the beach – mostly they were swiping bait from the fishermen – I waited until I could catch a bird and shoot it.

And you know by “catch” I meant photograph, and by “shoot” I meant photograph.  Right?

Oh look, there’s a little black bird on the pier.  Stay still, little black bird.

Come on, Nimslo, do your best.  Get me a shot of that little black bird.

Great shot of that little black bird on the fence posts.  That works.

Sorry, readers… for some reason, I’ve got a little blackbird on my mind.

Time for more photos.

I took a walk back onto the shore, and found a flag that warns not to swim out too far from the shore.  Hmm… what would this flag look like in a 3D construct?

Let’s find out.

How many shots do I have in the Nimslo?  One left.  Okay, I guess I could take another picture of the “no swimming” flag… then go back to the car and get more film …

Hey, wait a second.  There’s a lifeguard.  And she’s walking by.

“Scuse me.”

She looked at me.

“Is it okay if I take your picture with the ‘no swimming’ sign?”

“Um, I don’t know… I tell you what.  You can take my picture as I’m walking by it, how does that sound?”

Works for me.

One shot, Chuck.  Make it count.

Got it.  Okay, now I need to get this person’s name and have her sign a release form so I can enter this picture in competition season 2017 and …

Oh, crap.  She walked away.  Dang it.  Seven other lifeguards in red swimsuits.  No fair.

Oh well.  I may not be able to enter this photo in competition without a signed release…

But it still looks nice on the blog.

On Wednesday, I drove to Daytona Beach, checked out Daytona International Speedway – took a tour of the grounds, almost saw Danica Patrick there – and then drove over to the white sands of Daytona Beach.  For an additional $10, you can drive on the beach sand, just like the stock car drivers did in the old days – although now you must maintain a 10 mph speed limit, have your lights on (at high noon, no less) and keep one side window open while driving.

I continued forward.  Okay, Leica Green, it’s your turn to shine.

Oh look, someone built some sand castles with a little plastic pail.  Man, this feels great.  I asked the family of sunbathers next to the sandcastles if I could take a photo of the sandy artworks.  They said yes, and then handed me an iPhone so they could get in a picture as well.

“That’s a neat old camera you’ve got there,” one of the family members said to me.

“I know,” I smiled.  “It is a neat camera, isn’t it?”

Beachbuilder's dozen
Beachbuilder’s dozen. Leica M3 (double stroke), Summicron 50 lens, Kodak Ektar 100 film flipped to B&W, then selectively color to restore color to the sandpail. Photo by Chuck Miller.


I walk down the beach, and as I do, I see the lifeguard dragging that high chair to another location.

Oh yeah, you think I’m going to miss an opportunity to get a shot like this?

Silly you.

The Lifeguard at Daytona Beach. Leica M3 camera, Summicron 50 lens, Kodak Ektar 100 film. Photo by Chuck Miller.


Dang, those lifeguards at Daytona Beach are strong, aren’t they?  I’d better not joke about if this lifeguard was previously selling shoes and working in a shopping mall… #blottohumor

Back to the car, and this time I brought out the Rolleiflex.  Yes, I’m going to shoot with every camera on this trip if I can.

I still wanted to capture some ocean birds in their environment.  And unfortunately, these birds were a bit camera shy.  Although they did enjoy eating bait from various beachgoers.  And by “bait,” I mean Cheetos.  No lie.  These seagulls and pelicans and whatnot were more than happy to chomp on junk food.

I did get this shot of one bird soaking his little birdie toes in the surf.

Wade in the water
Wade in the water. Rolleiflex Automat MX camera, Fuji Velvia 100 film. Photo by Chuck Miller.


Damn that’s so peaceful and serene.  And I’m just feeling great.  Smiling like I just discovered milk chocolate.

On Thursday, I started to head home, but first I made a pit stop at St. Augustine Beach.  I picked up dozens of little beach shells for future projects.  I’m always thinking of future projects, I don’t know why…

But now it’s time to bring my Russian ultrawide Krasnogorsk FT-2 camera into the mix.  Come on, Raskolnikov, do your duty…

St Augustine long pier
Along the pier. Krasnogorsk FT-2 camera, Kodak Ektar 100 film. Photo by Chuck Miller.


Wow.  If I keep getting shots like this, I might stay in Florida and never come home.

A few steps around the beach… I grabbed the Rolleiflex and took a few more photos on the pier itself.

Gone Fishin'
Gone Fishin’. Rolleiflex Automat MX camera, Fuji Velvia 100 film. Photo by Chuck Miller.

//, of course, you know this final photo from my trip.  My final photograph, which among all my treasures from this Florida vacation, this is the one that I’m going to enter into competition.  I don’t even care that of the seven cameras I brought to this trip, this photo came from my eighth camera.

Yep.  I’ve decided that one of my entered photos in Competition Season 2016 will include my BlackBerry PRIV’s camera.

St Augustine Pier
The Pier at St. Augustine Beach. BlackBerry PRIV camera. Photo by Chuck Miller.


I have to hold on to these great memories of my first visit to the Sunshine State.  I have to.  I need to hold on to these as tightly as possible.

I need to hold on to the memories of the good.  The fun.  The peaceful.  The serene.  The amazing.

It was my last great adventure with my 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt SS.

And of the three cars I’ve driven in my lifetime…

I’m going to miss that car most of all.