Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Branching Out

This place is due for a facelift.  The background image hasn't been displaying in years, the blogroll is outdated, full of dead links and dormant blogs. The format is too narrow. In short... it needs an overhaul.

But in lieu of doing that, I went and started another blog purely for my photography. I figured I'd give this Tumblr thing a try... even though I'm still not entirely sure what its purpose is. I may migrate that stuff back to here, or at the very least cross-post once I fix this joint up.

Or maybe I should just build my own damned site. Of course, that would require me to actually learn how to code a web page. Something I should have done 15 years ago. Naw... too much work.

In the mean time, please swing by and take a look. Some old shots, and some new ones too.

Of course, as always, even more are on my Flickr page.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Tiny Challenges

I'm off to Vegas again in a couple days. Back when these plans were forming many months ago, I feared that this second trip in just over a month would be reluctant. After all, 3-4 days in Vegas is plenty, and a recharge before returning is always good. But I'm actually really stoked about this one. Different group, different experiences, and the enthusiasm of my friends is infectious.

One minor debate I had with myself was if I wanted to bring my camera gear again. December saw the camera, a couple lenses, Promote Control, 6' tripod, and other doohickeys. Out of that, I got some pics I'm pretty happy with, and a few I'm really happy with. This trip will have 4 full days, with the potential for plenty of lulls in activity... which could be ideal for a photowalk or two. But I've decided less is more. So the only camera I'll have with me is my iPhone, and I intend to use it.

It's not a great camera. It's terrible in low light. It's obviously pretty much full auto. Still, I think I can do some interesting things with it.

That is, when I'm not rolling dice, hitting max bet buttons, or begging for a dealer Pai Gow. Oh, and video poker... I've decided to give that a real try this time. Although I just don't see that as a winning proposition, it could be okay for tier points.

Monday, January 09, 2012

Through the Beer Glass, Darkly

More blahdeblah about photography classes.

I wrapped up another semester in December. It feels odd calling them semesters since I'm only taking one or two courses, at night, once a week.  Still, it's class, there's work involved.

Next one starts this week. A continuation of a previous class, and I have little idea what will be asked of us. I imagine more of the same, perhaps with more specific direction.  But if history is any guide, the final product will be graded on "is it pretty pictures?"

Regardless, my final portfolio assignment for last semester was centred around the idea of a home poker night. Maybe it was burn out, maybe it was laziness, but I just couldn't get the shoot I wanted together. Instead, I went with what I could get. Of the 5 shots I presented, there were only two I really liked, and that was pretty much reflected by the class's reaction.

Poker Night
This one pretty much came out exactly like I wanted. Tight, right angle, shallow depth of field... aces.

Poker Night
This one had the idea exactly right, but something about the shot didn't quite work for me. Maybe the darkness reflected in the bottom of the glass. Maybe the framing. A taller shot might work better. However, I think the intent was strong enough to carry the shortcomings.

Funny thing - I've owned the Godard chip set for years now, but it wasn't opened until this shoot.

Tuesday, January 03, 2012


I'll be honest - I have about zero willpower. Occasionally I'm able to tear myself away from cravings and desires, but most of the time? Hand in the cookie jar, exercise not done, and decisions that are more fun than good.

So far, it's worked out okay.

But I'll make some resolutions anyway.  Maybe putting them in ethereal ink in this here space will make them more real.

- In bed by midnight on work nights. Not necessarily asleep, but in bed. Because once I'm under the covers, I'm less likely to find a thousand things to keep me from going to bed.

- Lose 25lbs. Half a pound a week should be do-able, right? 190.4 as of this morning. 165 by New Year's Eve would be sweet.

- Swim more. I pay for a pool.  It's an elevator ride away. I've used it maybe three or four times in 7 years, none of those since they converted it to a salt water pool something like a year and half ago. And I LOVE swimming. I also pay for a gym and squash court that are just as conveniently located, but let's be realistic here.

- Get off my ass and do something when I think about doing it. Instead of putting aside for later. Seriously, it takes an hour to do my taxes and I get them in late every year (and I mean LATE). Piles of crap build up because I don't bother to deal with them. Dust develops sentience because I don't grab the swiffer and spend 5 seconds wiping down a shelf. I'm not talking epic tasks here, just the little things.  Which reminds me that I have a mail-in rebate to fill out when I get home.

- Organize my photos and get some displayed already.  I have over 35,000 images that I took sitting on my computer. Maybe 1/4 of them are tagged.  That same number could probably be deleted without being missed. The New Years weekend had no small amount of time spent keywording these things, and that's where it stands. As for displaying - there's a Vegas sunrise photo hanging in at least 3 or 4 people's homes (if not more), but not mine. I have a metallic print of it sitting in my closet. It should go in a frame. So should about half a dozen others. And dozens more should be in the digital frame gathering dust next to my computer (see the above resolution). That doesn't even get to the half a dozen other prints and original pieces of art I've bought over the years that aren't up.  I suck.