Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Happy New Year!!!!!!!!!!!

As the year 2014 fades in the rear view mirror, and 2015 looms ahead, I hope everyone had a wonderful year.  May the next year be even better, full of wonderment and good photography.

Happy, Happy New Year everyone!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Collected Links

I'm still collecting links.  Here are a few that have popped up lately.

A Kodak Instamatic commercial.  Film in a cartridge and flash cubes.  What more do you want?

Using a 8x10 film camera in the field.  Everyone should try this at least once.

 Mythbuster's Jamie Hyeman gets his photo taken.  A tintype.  Almost 7 minutes, but it is a good overview of the wet plate process.

Understanding curves in Photoshop.

Since it is the holiday season, here is the Avengers singing Christmas carols.

From DIY Photography.  20 Kickass projects from 2014.

Batch processing raw time-lapse images.

That's all for now.  I hope your day is going well.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Keywording my Photos

I'm really bad at keywording my photos.  While I know I should, it's usually a afterthought.  That can make it problematic sometimes when I want to find a specific photo.  It's something I keep meaning to go back and start building lists and keywording  the photos. 

One of the issue I have is coming up with a complete set of keywords for a photo.  Recently I found out that there are keyword list available to download.

If you are a Lightroom user, there is a list available at  This one is free, but is just starting out.  Installation instructions are available on the site as well.

If you use more than just Lightroom, there are sets of lists available at  While these are not free, they are far more comprehensive.   There are also subscriptions so you can keep up to date.  If you need more info, look under the resources item for links to books and articles.

Another site is  This is another list for sale, thought somewhat cheaper than the one above.  While they just mention Lightroom by name, they have instructions on importing the list into other programs.  They also have a set of free lists at, though they only have instructions on importing them into the list they sell.

There are other lists available, a simple Google search will bring them up.

Since I primarily using Lightroom, I'm downloading the free list.  I'm going to try to start using it on the next set of photos I import.  Hopefully, I can then go start keywording  all the rest of my files.

I'll let you know how it goes.

Monday, December 1, 2014

O'Neal Lake

O'Neal Lake was a man made lake on the southern end of  Wilderness Park in the Northern Lower Peninsula of Michigan.  Formed by damming a small stream, it was a place for canoeing, wildlife and especially birding.   It was a popular migrating bird stop and a Loon nesting area.

Access to the lake was a small two track dirt road that several people had issues with.  I was there for the first time in June, and found a beautiful area with a small ghost forest, and a quiet lake that was a great place to get away from the hustle and bustle.

Unfortunately, sometime in late summer, the dam failed.  The DNR ended up draining the lake while they figured out the issues.  It turns out the dam was ok, but some of the surrounding dirt berms had failed during heavy rains.  As of October of 2014, there was a promise to fix the berms and restore the lake.  Hopefully by the time I get up to that area early next year, that will have happened.   I would like to explore the area more.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

An excuse (again)

Sorry I haven't been on here for a while.  Even the last post was started in April and just posted, as you can probably tell.

Part of the problem is that I've changed my photographic workflow, and I don't have anything to post when I have the time to write.  The other problem is I've been busy.

I've been in 3 local shows put on by the West Michigan Photography Collective, of which I am a member.  I've entered two pieces in the Newago County Council for the Arts Statewide Photography Juried show.  Both pieces got accepted and one won an honorable mention.  I've also entered two pieces in the GR Festival of the Arts Juried Show and one piece got accepted.

Plus I've been trying with varied success to get some actual photography in.  Along with my personal life and work.  It's been an interesting time, as usual.

I'll get some photos up this week.  Plus I will be up north in a week, so I'm sure you'll see something then.

Take care.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Link Roundup

I haven't done one of these for a while, so I thought it might by time.  That is my faithful photo assistant above.  She hasn't got much praise here lately, so I thought it might be time....

It turns out this past Sunday was World Backup Day.  I didn't know that we needed such a day, but any way to remind people to back up their work is good.  This is specific to the Mac, but the advice is good for anyone.

World Backup Day from TUAW

If you still have Peeps left over from Easter, some science experiments you can do with them.

Make Magazines Annual Peeps roundup

Two juvenile Mountain Lions get harassed by five Coyotes.  I'm kind of surprised the Coyotes stood around for an hour while someone was standing by photographing.  A happy ending though!

Using fire painting in a fashion shoot.  It's giving me ideas....  :)

A private island in Lake Superior put in trust as an Artists retreat.

At times I run out of ideas on what to photograph.  Not sure if this will help, but it can't hurt.  I spent the money on it, but there are free versions as well.  For iPhones, a assignment generator.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Catching Up

     Just getting out of the annual winter blahs and thinking hard about what I want to do with my photography this year.   More on that in a little bit.

     I did finally end up out with the Midwest Large Format Asylum a couple of weeks ago for their March outing.  It was the first time I was able to find to to take a Saturday to get out with a camera.  Since the outing was in the middle of Illinois, I drove down Friday eve and came back Saturday.  It was great to get out with the camera again, and just spend a day photographing with a group of like minded individuals.  A great group.

     I've also been in two shows so far this year, with two more in the planning stages.  They are both groups shows though.  I need to get a body of work together and have a solo show.

     I've been exploring bookmaking and alternative processes some more.  I want to combine the two and do a small book of alternative prints.  A small number of copies as well, either one or two to start.  If this goes well, I would try a somewhat larger edition.  I also want to learn some more historic processes.  Wet plate photography for one, as well as photogravure for another.

     I always tell myself I want to get out and photograph some more.  Hopefully this year I will.

     Sit and think about my work.  I really don't spend a lot of time just going through my old work, and seeing how I've changed over the years.  I also need to start organizing my photos better, and pruning out the rejects.

     So here is the list, in no particular order.

  • Shoot more.  Preferably film, since it slows me down, but anything.
  • Learn more.  If you're not learning, you're dying.
  • Publish more.  Whether it is here, in a book or a show.  Get my work out where people can see it.
  • Get a real website.  I need someplace where people can see my work and buy it.
  • Enter more juried shows.  I've been entering the regional art competition every year, but I need to enter more. 

     As a side note, I will be giving my Night Photography talk at the Big Rapids Camera club this month, as well as a talk about Backups for Photographers at the Grand Rapids Camera Club.  If you're around, stop by and say hi.

That's it for now.  I hope spring gets here soon, and things are going well for you.  Thanks for reading!!

Sunday, February 17, 2013


I've been busy, which is hardly new.  I've got images in one show that is currently hanging and I'm trying to get ready for another. 

I've got three images, of which one is above.  Nudes, but tame in my opinion.  They are going in a local pub starting the 2nd of March.  In other words, I need to get my butt in gear.   I'm planning on printing the three images as cyanotypes, which is one of the first, if not the first ways of printing images.  A simple process, it needs just two chemicals for the print and a tray of water to develop.  Hopefully I can get one done this weekend and I can post it.

I still need to come up with a name for the series, hopefully that will come soon.

More later.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Link Roundup

     I'm sorry, as usual, I've been a little busy lately and haven't got out much to photograph or post to this.  I did take a few photos around Christmas, including the one above.  Unfortunately, I was in a hurry, took the photo handheld without a tripod, and there is more camera shake than I would like.  So you will only see this one on the web.  I believe the lights are still up, but with a early January thaw, there is no snow.  It wouldn't be the same, though I may go try.

   I'm participating in a group show starting January 19th in Kentwood Michigan.  I'm part of a small photography called the West Michigan Photography Collective.  We formed to help each other improve our work and display.  Only a year old, but we are learning every time we get together.  The show will be held at Frames Unlimited on East 28th St. near Woodland Mall.  It runs from January 19th through February 19th.  We will be having an artists meet and greet the 19th from 5 pm to 9 pm.  Light refreshments will be served.  Please stop by and say "hi" if you are in the area.   For more info:

    Battery management is a struggle for anyone who photographs these days.  Whether it's the batteries in your camera or batteries in your flashes, you need them.  Speedlites especially can run through a lot of little batteries.  A good article about managing all those batteries at

    I follow  Not sure why, the are usually a little kitschy for me.  But once in a while they come up with good ideas.  If  your looking for a photo project look at,  there are some good ideas.

    Another good idea is a weekly photo challenge.  A good place is the weekly photochallenge.  They are on week two, but that just means you need to get your butt in gear.

    If you're trying to do flash photography and get professional at it, and you're not following the Strobist at, you're missing something.  I especially liked this article about photographing shiny black articles on a white background.

That's all for now.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas Day 2012

As Christmas winds down for another year, I thought I would take a moment to hope that you had as wonderful a day as I did.  It was a day of family and friends, and cooking.  Lots of cooking, with a dash of photography thrown in.

Hopefully you got lots of photography gifts, and maybe you gave a few too. 

Merry Christmas!