Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Why I don't do weddings

It's been awhile since the last post, but I haven't been sitting around.  I've been shopping.  Trying to get back to a level of gear that I feel comfortable with.  I know some say "It isn't the gear that makes the shot, it's the photographer and their vision."  Yeah, well, thank you very much, but I like my gear just the same.  Pretty soon I'll be back up and shooting.
I did have a chance to figure out why I have no interest in shooting a wedding, besides the fact that a great amount of skill is necessary to do it properly.  This last weekend we traveled North to my parents home to throw a 50th wedding anniversary party.  It was quite the shindig.  I was, of course, tapped to carry my camera and get some shots throughout the day.  After a couple of hours of not getting more than 5 feet from the keg that was tapped,  I handed my duties over to my 11 year old daughter.  Now, to give you an indication of how much I really didn't want to be "the" photographer, I didn't even flinch when my daughter asked me for my camera so SHE could get some shots.  Go for it I said and I didn't really think about it again.  She did a really good job, too.  And I got my camera back in one piece.  So, yeah, it might be different if you're shooting someone's party and you don't really know the people, but, when it's a family gig and you are seeing people you haven't seen in many years, the pics take a back seat.
A couple more points about a party in Wisconsin:

You advertise a two person band and broasted chicken, they will come.
If you think you brought in too much beer, think again.
You could have 40 days and 40 nights of rain, like it seemed they had in that part of the world, but, if you lived a good life, the sun will come out and give you a gorgeous 80 degree day.
A two car garage that's been organized and swept can double as one of the finest dance halls in the land.
It's a lot of work pulling off a party like they had. I'm not saying for me, but I saw alot of people working hard.
Seeing the enjoyment on my parent's faces, priceless.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Oh no, not again

Well, after 4 days of pouting about not having all my photo gear, I attached my old 18-55mm lens that came with my camera originally and grabbed some shots.  Nothing spectacular.  Just showing how dumb, and I'm not sure if that is the right word to use, but I'm using it anyway, how dumb Robins can be.  If you remember, we had a robin build a nest on one of my deck speakers right above my grill which is used almost nightly especially at this time of year.  Well, we showed respect for the Robin and her offshoots by keeping the Cubs games on low volume, kept the AC/DC music from cranking out, and moved the grill temporarily, until she and her babies flew the coop.  No problem. And once they were gone, the nest and pics became a great show and tell project for my son at school.  I thought that was the end of it.  Guess again.  She's baaaaaaaack. She spent a couple days last week rebuilding and tonight while the mama was gone, I took a peek into her nest and see 3 more offspring waiting to be born.  I did some research the first time and found out they will lay 3 sets of eggs in the span of a couple of months, but never did I expect her to rebuild in the same spot. We will respect her domain again, but, she and the kids better be Cubs fans. A couple of new pics, not repeats from May.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


Yes, this day will live in infamy.  Thieves have struck.  No image in this post to signify the fact that I was the victim of a lecherous crook.  I went out to my vehicle in my driveway early this morning and everything seemed to be in place.  Less than two hours, later there was a trail of camera parts and accessories leading down the sidewalk, with a camera bag and laptop missing from my car. In broad daylight.  The fortunate thing:  I don't always put things back in their place, so, therefore, my camera itself was not in the bag, but along side it in my vehicle. It is still safe in my hands.  The unfortunate thing: Almost all of my camera gear is gone. The camera bag was not zipped up.  The thief grabbed the bag and took off down the sidewalk spilling lenses and accessories onto the sidewalk as he/she ran.  Most all camera gear/lenses are either gone or of no use due to their hitting the cement sidewalk.  So, until I figure out a plan or win the lottery, posting will be light or may include shots from the vault for awhile.  And if you see any photography on the web that looks like it might have come from me, let me know.  Perhaps it is being shot with my equipment.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Taking a long walk off a short pier

No, I didn't do that but it was foggy enough at the end of the pier where one might do that.  One more of my fog shots from this weekend.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Perfect weather....for some

In some ways, todays overcast weather with light rain was a perfect day.  The cool morning brought in the fog once again.  I decided to head north to a state park not far from the house when I saw the low ceiling of fog this morning.  I've been through there before and never really found any great shots while there.  But, it had been awhile since I had been there and with the fog it was worth checking it out again. I spent some time in the park and fired off some shots, but it was as I was heading out of the park that I could see off in, well, I don't think its called a field if it is a protected area, and it wasn't what they call a fen....Anyway, it was a swampy area off the road a couple hundred yards and I could see a bunch of white specks in the water.I'm sure a person with 20/20 vision would have been able to make out the birds.  I had to park it and raise my camera up and look through my lens to see it was a big resort for my white herons that I like.  They were having a good time.  Flying around and messing with each other and doing what they do when they are in water.  I'm sure some fishing was going on.  It was a pretty nice sight especially since I didn't have to crawl through the grass and mud like I often do in order to grab some shots of them.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Sunsets are cool

After a not so "hot" spring, summer is kicking in with a bang.  It is officially beach season in my household.  We, especially Derek and I, have beach fever.  When we first moved here 13 years ago, one of the selling points to me was the close proximity to a public beach. I definitely have made good use of that proximity over the years and didn't even realize how much more we would get out of it once we had kids.  Both my kids are fish and love being on the lake in a boat or just some time on the sandy beach.  For the second year now, my 7 year old has made it his personal goal to be the last one out of the lake every day of the summer.  He didn't make it last year which I'm sure was my fault, but, so far, through 4 days this year, he's on pace to do it.  Only about 88 more days to go.  We'll see. Each night of this season has been blessed with an incredible sunset.  Hey, maybe I'll post a sunset pic every night of this season.  Maybe not.  Saturday was my son's birthday and he had a party.  One of his friends stayed the night and we hit the beach after dinner.  I already knew that most people don't make it a regular ritual to run from the dinner table and throw on their swimsuit and hurry to catch an hour or so of beach time, but it really hit home when my son's friend turned to me on the way home that night and said, "You're the bestest dad in the world."  Now, I know it was the heat of the moment and that he might tell that to any guy not telling him to clean his room, but it was still cool to hear just because I took them to the beach after dinner.  Perhaps the best thing about beach season is once you are there, there are no phones( I don't bring a cell), no computers, no TV's, no video games, etc.  It is strictly one on one time with the kids.  And that is probably the real reason to throw your swimsuit on after dinner and head on out.  Oh yeah, the sunset's are really cool, too.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Excuse me, I'm a little Horse this morning

One more from the fog shots from the other day.  This one was shot about 10 minutes before the sun finally burned off all the fog.

Friday, June 3, 2011

7 year itch

The great thing about your children's birthdays is you usually can remember where you were on a certain day years ago.  I know, 7 years ago, my wife and I were at the hospital having a baby.  Well, my wife was.  If I was having a baby at that time too, this blog would be about a whole different subject.  But, I digress. 
It was the last time we experienced that special moment.  Twice was enough.  A beautiful girl.  A great boy. And now that baby boy is 7 year's old today.  The only thing I wish for in the next 7 years is that the Sponge Bob Squarepants fixation goes away.  But, I bet his wish when he blew out the candles was for another 50 years of new Spongebob episodes. Happy Birthday, Derek!!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

The Lonely Hunter

Here's a shot from my "Fog Fest" pics from Sunday.  This guy flew in just as I was scoping out the area for anything to shoot.  I stood around and watched him for about 15 minutes and grabbed some shots.  I don't think he moved once during that time.  Once again, not sure what kind of bird he is.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Morning Fog

Sunday morning was a fog fest. Landscape shooters love them some fog.  Throw a red barn into the mix and we're in heaven.