Submitted by Visitor on Sun, 20/12/2009 – 9:39 p.m.

“Along the simple line-
a stream of pebbles—
on the unruffled forehead
of a wall
in joyful and large openings.
where numerous geometrical shapes
border an innovative perception
movement meets stillness
hey there you are
art and technicality of fantasy and creativity
there your beauty resides
Along the line
On a wall
And everywhere
an essence providing meaning to all forms
I proclaim your motionless dance.”

Snapshot of the entrance of the Frank Gehry’s Museum at the Pacific entrance of the Panama Canal in Panama City, Panama. Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.


“What if I fall?
Oh, but my darling,
What if you fly?”

Erin Hanson

It’s time to turn the page and move on to new territories.  Hope to find you there and share with me the experiences of exploring the reality around us.  Good Day.

Last Sunday my wife and I drove over to La Calzada de Amador to take pictures of Frank Gehry’s Museum, still under construction, although you can visit it during Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.  Even though it was a dark, overcast day with cobalt skies, I was able to take several pictures with my ole Canon PowerShot A720 IS.

For those of you who are not familiar with Frank Gehry, let me say that he is a Canadian-American architect known for postmodern designs, including the Walt Disney Concert Hall and the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain.  Based in Los Angeles since the 1960s, Gehry is among the most acclaimed architects of the 20th century, and is known for his use of bold, postmodern shapes and unusual fabrications.

Frank Gehry was creative at a young age, building imaginary homes and cities from items found in his grandfather’s hardware store. This interest in unconventional building materials would come to characterize Gehry’s architectural work.

In 1956, Gehry moved to Massachusetts with his wife, Anita Snyder, to enroll at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. He later dropped out of Harvard and divorced his wife, with whom he had two daughters. In 1975, Gehry married Berta Isabel Aguilera, then a Panamanian citizen, and had two more children.

Perhaps as a deference to his Panamanian wife, he accepted to design a museum in Panama City.  When it is finished, I’m certain it will become one of the main tourist attractions of the country, next to the Panama Canal, the Old Shell of Panama City, and the Ruins of Panama Viejo.

Below are some of the pictures of the Gehry’s Museum shot last Sunday.  Enjoy.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

In an effort to create some expectation for more pictures of Frank Gehry’s work in Panama, I thought it would be proper to avoid saturating the reader with excessive pictorial content.  If you have enjoyed today’s post, then please return tomorrow to view the remaining pictures of this outstanding work of art.  Good Day.

In an effort to continue my self-education in the field of photography and enhance mi skills, I finally received a working tripod from Amazon last week.  This time everything went well and no legs fell of like the previous occasion.  As I mentioned on an earlier post, I selected a Manfrotto 190X ProB 3 section aluminum pro tripod to take night pictures of the city.  I’ve always wanted to capture the bright lights of Panama City after the sun had gone to sleep.

Panama has a vibrant life full of color, movement and class.  Capturing its night life is one of my dearest projects and the tripod will make this aspiration materialize.

The main specifications of this product are:

  • Q90 horizontal column capability
  • Robust construction
  • Perfect for wildlife and location photography
  • Works with DSLR and point and shoot cameras

Below are several pictures of my newly arrived tripod.  Can’t wait to take my night pictures of urban life in Panama City.

Snapshot of the Manfrotto tripod fully extended and with the ballhead installed. As you can see it’s quite tall and sturdy. Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Snapshot of my Canon DSLR EOS Rebel T2i camera installed on top of the tripod ready to go. It was a breeze to set the tripod up and install the camera on the plate. Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Snapshot of the tripod with the ballhead without extending its telescopic legs. The height on this position is about 22 inches high. Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Snapshot of the Manfrotto tripod without the ballhead. Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

In this shot you can see the bubble to balance out the tripod. Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Yesterday we drove over to Amador’s Causeway to take pictures of the Frank Gehry’s Museum.  The vividly hued concrete and steel biodiversity museum sits dramatically along the Amador Causeway, former site of a U.S. Army base at the Pacific entry to the Canal.

The morning turned out to be very dark, gloomy and damp.  Soon after we got there, it started to drizzle, so we abandoned the idea of setting up the tripod and taking our pictures.  However, I did manage to take some pictures using my compact P&S Canon PowerShot A720 IS.  They turned out pretty nice.  Should be posting them here probably next week.  Meanwhile we are planning to shoot some pictures of Panama’s skyline from the Cinta Costera during the early hours of the evening next Sunday.  We are crossing our fingers that everything turns out fine.  Good Day.

After a long and tedious research on the Internet, I finally decided to acquire a tripod and its corresponding ballhead.  It was not an easy task, considering I’m not a professional photographer and the zillion of options out there.  Pinpointing the best one is almost impossible, plus there is always the monetary constraints factor.

After a tiresome screening I made up my mind and settled for a Manfrotto 496 RC2 ballhead with a quick release plate.  The tripod was a Manfrotto 190 XProB 3 section aluminum pro tripod.  Manfrotto is an Italian company who specializes in manufacturing high quality photographic equipment.

The selected ballhead is medium size, light, with quick release–perfect for amateurs and professionals. Strong enough to take 35mm SLR or DSLR with medium lenses, and light medium format cameras.  It has a single indexed “ratchet” locking knob for 360° pan and +90° -90° tilt movements.

It’s equipped with a 200PL quick release camera plate system with a secondary safety catch.  Camera plate has 1/4″ male thread.  Head to tripod attachment is 3/8″ female thread. Material used is all aluminum construction and black finish.

Its main specifications are:

  • Supports up to 13 pounds
  • Repositionable locking lever for most comfortable use.
  • New ergonomic design.
  • New friction control for better control.
  • Quick release system features a new style secondary lock.
  • Price:  $79.00

Below are several pictures of the Manfrotto ballhead purchased on-line through Amazon.com.  Here we go.

Snapshot of the Manfrotto ballhead box with the manufacturer’s logo and name. Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

In this picture you can easily read the name of the model of the ballhead and the name of the countries where it is marketed, (e.g., Canada and the United States). Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Tomorrow I plan to post the pictures of the Manfrotto tripod itself.  We went to Amador Causeway this morning to experiment with the new tripod, but the day was overcast, dark and rainy.  Took some pictures of the  Gehry Museum which I positively know will need to be post processed to make them decent enough to share with our readers here.  Not very happy, but I know better days will come in the upcoming week.  Perhaps taking pictures at night will be the day I inaugurate my new gear.  Good Day.

Several months ago (April 2014), I make the decision to buy a tripod to take pictures at night or at very low levels of light.  That has been one my graphic projects for a long time.  Panama City has a wonderful skyline which glows in the dark like a fairytale story.  This is what drives me crazy.  This is my dream.  This is what won’t let me sleep at night.  This is my burning desire.

After researching the subject on the Internet, I decided on the Ravelli 65″ carbon fiber 3 axis ballhead camera video photo tripod with a quick release plate and carrying bag, professional.  It turned out to be a bad decision.  The second time I tried to set it up to make sure it would hold my DSLR camera and its heavy lens, one of the legs fell off.  On April 28, 2014 I returned the defective tripod to Amazon and requested a refund.  The tripod had a one-year guarantee.  I was surprised to find out that the carrier, Aeropost, would take care of the refund, since all their packages are fully insured.  Sure enough, in less than one week I was paid in full, including the transportation charges from Miami to Panama.

I was back to square one researching for a replacement tripod.  Three month later and endless hours before a computer screen, I selected another tripod.  This time it was the Manfrotto 190X ProB 3 section aluminum Pro tripod with a Manfrotto 496 RC2 ballhead with quick release.  It arrived home safely and in perfect conditions shipped by Amazon.com.  I also purchased a bag to protect the tripod and the ballhead from scratches, unexpected bumps and normal wear and tear while traveling.

Tomorrow morning, my wife and I will travel to Amador’s Causeway to take pictures of the Gehry Museum, a.k.a. the The Biodiversity Museum: Panama Bridge of Life, and experiment with the new tripod during the Golden Hour of the morning. Fingers crossed.

Below are several pictures of the bag in charge of protecting the tripod and ballhead.  The bag carries the name of VidPro TC-27 padded tripod bag for 27-inch long tripods.  The main specifications of the bag are:

  • Heavy-duty, Cordura webbed nylon
  • Accommodates: Tripod with head, up to 27″ long
  • Shoulder strap and handles
  • Large zippered exterior pocket
  • Price:  $13.59

Snapshot of the Vidpro bag which includes a large exterior side pocket convenient to carry photographic accessories. The materials looked very strong and resistant to our Tropical hot and humid weather. Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Snapshot of the tripod with head inside the bag. Everything fitted like a glove. Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Snapshot of the closed bag with the tripod and the ballhead neatly tucked inside. We are ready to go. Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Tomorrow I plan to post pictures of the ballhead and the next day of the tripod itself.  For the time being, there will be a long wait until I save more money for new gear.  This hobby is getting pretty expensive for a retiree with a cash-strapped budget.  Good Day.

Red Drums

Snapshot of red drums at El Machetazo Supermarket yesterday afternoon. You can almost hear the energetic rhythms of the great Gene Krupa or Buddy Rich in the exhibition room. Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

There was another famous drummer whose name circled the globe many times over during the roaring sixties.  His name was Richard Starkey,  better known by his stage name Ringo Starr. In hindsight, I don’t know if he was famous for being a gifted drummer or for being one of the Beatles.  What do you think?

Fridge Magnets

Many people use their refrigerator as the favorite water hole for the family’s communications system.  Under small magnets they leave the messages they want the family to acknowledge.  The fridge is like a very simple, no-nonsense, straight-to-the point communications center.

We don’t follow this pattern.  Instead, I prefer to use my computer to remind me of what I need to know, and it does it quite efficiently.  Appointments, To-Do-Lists, Birthdays and other important information is stored and retrieved in the computer with satisfactory results.  My main computer is our family’s waterhole.

Having said that, we do have fridge magnets, albeit with no messages.  There is a Chinese tea I drink to help me tame the reflux problems.  The name of the tea is “Super Strength Premium Dieter’s Tea” from Sun Valley, U.S.A. Each box includes a free fridge magnet, which my wife diligently places on the top door of our fridge.  We have an increasing collection of cute magnets decorating our refrigerator.  Take a look.

Snapshot of several colorful magnets decorating our loyal Whirlpool refrigerator. Notice there are no messages attached to them. Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.


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