This is a day lily in our backyard. They only bloom properly for a single day, according to Marian, so I hustled out on D-Day and got this picture.

In reality, this flower is pure yellow, but I dehazed it to get the deep orange in the middle. Dehazing has gotten something of a bad rap for being overused, but that’s mainly because too many people use it to actually dehaze hazy photos. Generally speaking, if you have fog or haze in a landscape, you should leave it there. It’s part of the scenery, and trying to remove it doesn’t improve things. However, I occasionally find it useful in modest quantities for pictures where the lighting is just a little too drab. This very much includes portraits of people taken indoors in very flat lighting. Today’s picture is sort of the flower equivalent of that, except that I felt free to use more than the usual level of dehazing because it’s just a flower and I didn’t care about hurting its feelings.

July 14, 2018 — Irvine, California

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LET’S TALK ABOUT OPTIMISM FOR A CHANGE

Democracy and journalism are in crisis mode—and have been for a while. So how about doing something different?

Mother Jones did. We just merged with the Center for Investigative Reporting, bringing the radio show Reveal, the documentary film team CIR Studios, and Mother Jones together as one bigger, bolder investigative journalism nonprofit.

And this is the first time we’re asking you to support the new organization we’re building. In “Less Dreading, More Doing,” we lay it all out for you: why we merged, how we’re stronger together, why we’re optimistic about the work ahead, and why we need to raise the First $500,000 in online donations by June 22.

It won’t be easy. There are many exciting new things to share with you, but spoiler: Wiggle room in our budget is not among them. We can’t afford missing these goals. We need this to be a big one. Falling flat would be utterly devastating right now.

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