Video of the Gemfield Gems Chalcedony Claim

The Gemfield Gems Chalcedony Claim north of Goldfield, Nevada. Multicolored rocks and possibly antelope. Certainly wild burro.

Official site:

Gemfield Gems Chalcedony Claim from Thomas Farley on Vimeo.
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What Color Do You See?

What Color Do You See?

As those who follow me on Instagram know, I was recently out on the Gemfield Gem Claims near Goldfield, Nevada. I picked up a few pieces of chalcedony showing a nice, soft blue.

I later had lunch at the Dinky Diner in Goldfield with the claim owner, Sharon Artlip. I commented on the blue tinged material I collected. She said she would describe that color as gray, not blue, certainly nothing like a Robin’s egg blue. I agreed with that but thought the pieces still displayed a nice color. I went out to my truck and brought back in what I collected. 

Putting them down on the dining table, I had to agree with Sharon. They were showing a light or pale battleship gray. No blue. We talked this over. She said she was extremely reluctant to call anything at Gemfield blue. She later said, “I am one of those people who try to err on the side of caution because I know we all see things a little differently.  It is amazing how two people can take a picture of the same thing at the same time and both pictures come out totally different because of angle, lighting or whatever.”

Or whatever. At the time I collected I was working in harsh, direct sunlight. With sunglasses on. Sunglasses have distorted my color perception before and it was certainly possible they could be doing so this time. Yet they still showed slightly blue in Las Vegas when I got them home, this time without my sunglasses on.

What we saw inside the Dinky Diner was the result of indoor, artificial lighting. It took away the subtle color. I don’t photograph indoors because it renders flesh tones incorrectly and does not give a true portrayal. We all know how badly we look in a bathroom mirror depending on what kind of bulb is used. This leads to a deep subject called the temperature of color.

I think jewelers use a standard light setup to judge gemstone color but I don’t know much about that.

What else could contribute to people differently perceiving color?

A persons’ slight or major color blindness.

As stated, artificial light or even a difference in the light outdoors from the time something was collected.

The angle of view.

The background.

On a computer, a difference in monitors might change what is perceived in person.

In print, the printing process may poorly represent what one saw in person. Within the printing world, different paper will give different results.

Cameras. Different digital cameras show colors differently. The same with print film. Digital files are usually manipulated or processed. Depending on the work done in “post,” this may contribute to the problem. A filter on a lens will certainly change the color. Any camera on automatic will fight to brighten or darken an image without any signal to the photographer.

I thought about showing those pieces of chalcedony to you, but my photos aren’t correctly displaying what I see in person. In fluorescent mineral photography, this is an accepted problem. You take your best photograph, and then you fuss endlessly with it in post, trying to adjust the controls until the image on the screen finally represents what you saw under the UV light. Or, most often, _close_ to what you saw.

Update: Here are two unprocessed photos taken on an iPhone. The first photo  was taken indoors ten feet away from a window. The second was taken at the window.  Note especially how the upper third of the rock in the first photo was faded in the first photo but comes into prominence in the second photo. Same rock, different light, different angle, different results. Does either look blue to you?
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Dah Rock Shop in Tucson, Arizona

Dah Rock Shop

I missed these people on my Travel List, apologies. (external link) It’s easy to get distracted when you are in Tucson for the Big Show.

I have heard of this shop but I think I got it scrambled with Dials Rock shop, which I’ve covered, and a man named Dahl, who came up with the Pet Rock. In any case, I am looking forward to visiting this rock shop which also sells crystals and beads.

Dah Rock Shop
3401 N Dodge Blvd
Tucson, Arizona 85716
520 323-0781

N 32°16.16333′ -110°54.87833′ W

No website but a Facebook page:

I normally take my own photos but I can’t do that now. I have taken two off the net, one from Gordon G and another from Steve S.
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You Don’t Have Enough

Crossposted to my writing website.

I recently took fifteen minutes to write out my thoughts on the satellite terminal I just bought to a website that had little information on the device. That site deals with communicating on the road, particularly to the RV set. The website said they had no plans to test the equipment themselves so I thought I’d share what I found out and included links to the videos I have done.

The response? “Thank you for the feedback. You can leave your comments on the SatFi page if you are a member.” Memberships start at $85. They want me to pay them $85 to tell them what I know!? This is completely insane and right in keeping with every dull tool that thinks I am profiting over what I do.

If I am rockhounding, law enforcement always asks if I sell what I collect. No. If I am taking photographs, the question is always whether I am selling my photographs. No. A security guard at a park came over to me when I was experimenting with my satellite phone, to ask me if I was running a business. No.

Am I making money off my websites? No. See any ads? See any copyright restrictions? Am I selling anything? No. Why not? Because you don’t have enough money to interest me.

Nothing you can afford to pay me would be worth the bother of running ads or selling a rock or a photo. In years past I tried a variety of schemes to make money off of my websites and they were all stupidly impossible to carry out. Ads made the sites look messy, they disrespected my readers and there was this stench of begging that repulsed me. You don’t need that, I don’t need that.

Notice my videos? I stopped using YouTube because of their ads and am now using Vimeo which I pay quite a bit of money for each month. Just to kill the ads. Google sticks ads on them when they get published to YouTube but I collect _nothing_. Google does not have my bank account information, I am in no program to monetize them.

Whatever the average reader can afford to look at my work is not enough to bother with charging. I have over a hundred photos and videos and Wikimedia Commons that I put in the public domain with no restrictions on them whatsoever. Maybe they can do somebody some good. There isn’t any good for myself by trying to sell them. So, why bother producing all of this material?

Because I want to share my interests, of course, just like the 100 million other personal websites on the web. And also, perhaps, just perhaps, to help some people along the way.

My rockhound related travel files (external link) took over two years of off and on work to complete. They are an enlargement of chapters I had written for my now dead book project. Might as well put them on the web, expanding them along the way. I’m charging nothing for them and I know from reports that many rock shops say I have driven customers to them. I support the rock, gem, and mineral trade and I do so by doing!

Sorry for the rant, I am still bothered by my offer of help to be turned into a pitch for money. I don’t know why I am still astonished by bad behavior on the net as it is a breeding ground for soulless cretins who only want your wallet. After all, the internet and everything related to it was designed for one purpose and one purpose only: to get you to click on an ad.

I’m done. For today.