Tuesday, January 29, 2008


I can't believe I forgot to mention in yesterdays rant...the power went out in the middle of the 7hour jewelry shoot....for 2 HOURS! Here's where the ...what more can they do to me?...quote really is appropriate. At first we thought we had blown a fuse, my lights were getting kind of hot...but noooooo, power was down within a 10mile radius (Julie's husband works for the Diablo Canyon Nuclear energy plant, but even her connections didn't help:)

So.... Julie went to get lunch and I took about a 5 minute break before I figured that, not knowing how long this outage would last and really not wanting to spend the night (newspaper photos due in the morning) I needed to keep going. I changed the settings on the camera and took pics by the light from the window....which was inconsistent because it was cloudy outside....yeah, this is fun!

OK, options.... whine (too late, already doing that!) cry (another check) quit (my usual response) or...... I could decide to learn something here....hmmm...novel idea...let's go with that one.

I would do so many things differently next time (and there will be a next time). Different apertures, different shutter speeds, better lighting (looking into umbrellas and diffusers as we speak), better backdrops (bringing my own next time!) and most importantly a better tripod....one that actually stands still! I will be researching studio lighting, scouring jewelry websites, and practicing....ALOT!
I will get good at this....dag nabbit!

And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
Romans 3-5

Monday, January 28, 2008

My sister-in-law ...

....the Artist

Drove to the coast this last weekend to take photos for my sister-in-law Julie's website...she is an amazing jewelry creator and was struggling with getting a decent photographer to take the pics without costing her a fortune...so instead she went with the hack she is related to and who just happens to be free! All kidding aside, and nowithstanding the couple of good pics I did get (see above:) mostly it was (yet another) disaster....I'm beginning to wonder if the
lessons learned part of life ever gets past the painful lesson part. I must admit I'm getting tired of trying to find the silver lining...the character building part...the painful part...that's all I seem to get.

The photos that worked, the ones that are the most like what I do...the ones in my comfort zone...the ones that are portraits of jewelry, I like some of those. Everything else was ....not bueno...(to quote my children). Colors were off (and I mean apple green is YELLOW) lighting was off (splotchy...possibly a direct result of using my son's desk lamps for lighting) and worst of all, the tripod I borrowed from her husband kept listing (one of the leg locks was broken ...which took us a while to figure out and then we had it propped on paint cans....long story....AND the piece that locks onto the camera and fits into tripod kept coming loose so every 10 photos or so I had to take it off and screw it back in again...what more can they do to me?...suffice it to say that at one point I told her we should take a photo of the set-up just for fun..of course it would have been more fun if the shoot had been successful) And I have no remote release for my camera, so to counter any possible camera shake I used the timer for every shot...which just prolonged the agony of the whole situation. 7hours of work (she has a lot of jewelry and I'm slow) But at least that part I know can be taken care of with a purchase...or 2. The color issue is something I have had to deal with a LOT lately...and no one seems to be able to figure it out...ugh. The frustration is monumental and I am once again questioning my abilities and what direction my photographic life is going in. I need prayer...or at least wine :)

Friday, January 25, 2008

My Daughter is the Best!

We're doing a water challenge on 365 and my DD suggested we take pics of her in the rain jumping in puddles. I was ready to quit after about 2 shots (hey, it was cold!), but she
insisted we keep at it and of course the last few were the best!!!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

For My Friend

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Looking forward to Retirement!

Working people frequently ask retired people what they do to make their days interesting. This is my favorite response...ever....

The other day I went into town to do some shopping. I was only there for about 5 minutes, and when I came out, there was a cop writing out a parking ticket.

I said to him, "Come on, man, how about giving a retired person a break"? He ignored me and continued writing the ticket. I called him a "Nazi."

He glared at me and wrote another ticket for having worn tires. So I called him a "doughnut eating Gestapo." He finished the second ticket and put it on the windshield with the first. Then he wrote a third ticket.

This went on for about 20 minutes. The more I abused him the more tickets he wrote. Personally, I didn't care. I came downtown on the bus, and the car that he was putting the tickets on had a bumper sticker that said, "Hillary in '08."

I try to have a little fun each day now that I'm retired. It's important to my health.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

That's my boy!

Wils basketball game last night was not pretty....they lost to Selma by at least 10. But hey, I got this cool picture :)

Friday, January 18, 2008

Another one of Nico...

I think I have had a revelation working on these pics. Nico was such a great kid and I was fortunate enuf to get a chance to photograph him because he was not financially able to hire a photographer to do his senior photos. Since I am new and still just 'practicing' I did them for free and he is allowing me to use them in my portfolio. It was such a great feeling being able to do this for him that I have decided to make it a ministry...I will still need to build a business (must eat!) but in addition to my paying clients I want to be able to offer free sessions to certain kids and photos at cost (most printing is fairly cheap). I'm in a unique position with Steven teaching at the High School; he can scope out the Junior class for victims and we can approach them with the offer of free photos for letting me use them in advertisements etc. The hard part will be narrowing down the pool of deserving applicants...we have a fair number of households in town that qualify for poverty status, kinda sad. My prayer now is that the Lord give us wisdom in choosing students and discretion in approaching them.

But Peter said, I do not possess silver and gold, but what I do have I give to you
Acts, 3:6

Thursday, January 17, 2008

The Red Door

Nico has the greatest smile! And if every senior boy was as happy and cooperative as this kid, I would SO have the easiest job....

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

My Talented Daughter

Annie has been taking lots of photos and now is delving into Photoshop....I love what she did with this photo!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Nicos senior pics

Really starting to doubt my ability/willingness to go for the whole 'senior photographer' job description...I get sick to my stomach with doubt every time I get asked to do this, and I don't even charge yet...eek! This shot was one from today's session, it's acutally a 'mulligan' (do-over) from the session I did last summer but was not happy with (tho his family ended up liking them). His aunt really pushed to get me going today, she loves my pics and has been a big encouragement in getting me going. I asked for help in putting together a portfolio so she basically wouldn't let me off the hook here, and I ended up being really glad I went. I have always loved railroad shots and tho I don't care for this location (we were actually scouting packing house doors looking for something interesting) I do like the mood of the shots I got.

My issue tho is that I still don't feel like the shots are professional looking, like there's something missing. Not sure if it's my photography or my photoshopping that needs the most work tho. I started the NYIP photo course last month and so far it has been a huge disappointment; incredibly boring and not at all helpful. I'm giving it one more session and then looking elsewhere. But what I really want to be able to do is hone my photoshop skills. I think you can really take a good photograph and make it look fantastic with a bit of photoshopping.

My goal for this year is to improve my knowledge of lighting and how to shoot a properly exposed photo...and then to really learn how to creatively use photoshop. Mostly tho, my goal is to not give up!

...and to pick out a really good white paint for my kitchen cupboards :)

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Something to think about...

A father wanted to read a magazine but was being bothered by his little girl, Shelby. She wanted to know what the United States looked like. Finally, he tore a sheet out of his new magazine on which was printed the map of the country. Tearing it into small pieces, he gave it to Shelby, and said, "Go into the other room and see if you can put this together. This will show you our whole country today."

After a few minutes, Shelby returned and handed him the map, correctly fitted and taped together. The father was surprised and asked how she had finished so quickly. "Oh," she said, "on the other side of the paper is a picture of Jesus. When I got all of Jesus back where He belonged, then our country just came together

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

...and another

On the first day of school a first grade teacher explains to her class that she is a Yankees fan. She asks her students to raise their hands if they, too, are Yankees fans.
Wanting to impress their teacher, everyone in the class raises their hand except one little girl.
The teacher looks at the girl with surprise and says, "Janie, why didn't you raise your hand?"
"Because I'm not a Yankees fan," she replied.
The teacher, still shocked, asked, "Well, if you are not a Yankees fan, then who are you a fan of?"
"I am a Red Sox fan, and proud of it," Janie replied.
The teacher could not believe her ears. "Janie, why pray tell are you a Red Sox fan?"
"Because my mom is a Red Sox fan, and my dad is Red Sox fan, so I'm a Red Sox fan too!"
"Well," said the teacher in an obviously annoyed tone, "that is no reason for you to be a Red Sox fan. You don't have to be just like your parents all of the time. What if your mom were an idiot and your dad were a moron, what would you be then?"
"Then," Janie smiled, "I'd be a Yankees fan."

Monday, January 7, 2008

Baseball humor....for Red Sox fans

Four baseball fans - a Cubs fan, a Cardinals fan, a Red Sox fan, and a Yankees fan - are climbing a mountain and arguing about who loves his team more.

The Cubs fan insists he is the most loyal. "This is for the Cubs!" he yells, and jumps off the side of the mountain.

Not to be outdone, the Cardinals fan shouts, "This is for the Cardinals!" and throws himself off the mountain.

The Red Sox fan is next to profess his love for his team. He yells, "This is for everyone!" and pushes the Yankees fan off.

...tee hee...

Thursday, January 3, 2008

More from Christmas day

I'm still kind of impressed that my kids were willing to stop playing ‘guitar hero’ long enuf to make it to the top of the hill …tho it might explain all the running on the the way back down!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

View from the top...

...actually it's about midway up the hill but that doesn't have quite the same ring to it...