Pool Shark

A boy plays his first game of pool... My son plays his first game of pool...while doing a Cub Scout achievement no less!

To capture a moment of timeless contemplation what else to do other than get a nice photo finished as sepia?

I am really starting to enjoy environmental portraiture.  To photograph people in their element makes catching a glimpse of their soul so much easier!

For you camera geeks like me...shot with a Pentax K-5, Sigma 17-50 F2.8 OS with reflection coming off the pool table itself actually giving me some fill light!  Fantastic combo of camera and lens.  Post was completed in Nik Silver Efex Pro 2.


Scouting Growth

Scouts plan the assembly of a diorama for their Bear badge I often don't get to travel and grab majestic photos of the grad highlights of the world outside of work travel.  Usually the reason is that I am helping nurture the greatest treasures we all have...our children.  Whether it is my family, or my extended scout family, it is the focus of what we do all the time.

This photo shows three of my cub scouts doing one of our projects.  They are completing a diorama.  I showed them how to mark off an area where they would put the "fort" and now they had to place the catapult, trees, soldiers, earthworks and catapult projectiles.  We'd then glue everything down and be ready to show it off at the pack meeting.

This is all part of an 18 month project to get them ready for Boy Scouts where they will set the agenda and execute it.  In little steps they are learning to draw out plans on a board, identify materials required to make the project, identify who has the skill to do the job, and then think through spacial relationships to make it all come together.

It is an awesome adventure for both them and us parents.  Thankfully I have good parents who are fully involved the program, and we've resolved we are not going to make this play time....we're making it focused character growth time.  Things like launching playdoh bombs from a working model catapult..well that is just tactile reinforcement of a job well done!


Perspective Changes

In the Review mirror of a Model A After shooting several people in the Model A truck over a few days, I had to literally find a new angle to shoot the truck.  Looking up I saw the mirror, and decided to have some fun with it.

I like the photo, but the reality is that you cannot tell if this is an old truck, a Jeep, or a go cart.  So I learned something about perspective in reviewing this shot.  The first lesson was if you keep looking around you can find interesting perspectives of a subject you missed before.  This perspective change may not however meet the goal of the image's sponsor to show off people in a clearly identifiable Model A..  In this case I have a cool photo, but it does not scream, "Cool Model A!"



Final 2012 Veteran's Day Tribute

I am always emotional on Veteran's Day.  This year even more so since I was not with my brother Knights of Columbus in Virginia executing a Flag Retirement.  In the past we hosted over 120-140 people.  We'd provide flags to veterans, police and fire flown around the world at memorials and cemeteries.  As I am now living in Georgia, I could not be a part of that great event this year.. Tonight my Cub Scout Den held a Veteran's Appreciation Ceremony for John 'Jack' Dehaven.  We sang him songs, I gave him restored photos of him in WWII, listened to his stories and made it as special as possible for him.  He sits behind my family at church, and is the most gentle guy you could meet.  I laughed when I realized how he crossed paths with my grandmother in the Boston USO, and my Mom's family in the Leigh Valley of Pennsylvania (He is from Allentown).  It really is a small world.

I've made it a habit to review my old photo collection and some old books every Veteran's Day.  I was taken back by the power of photography to be 12 watching my Dad at Camp Zama, Japan, a 17 yr old cadet at West Point, 23 yr old LT again in Germany, 25 yr old Executive Officer in Bosnia, 28 yr old Commander in Kosovo...and the memories of the men and women I grew up with came back as a tidal wave.  I love my life now with four children and a good job, but those days really helped me become the man I am today.  They made me dream, gave me drive to succeed, care for people and a life full of experiences to take with me on my next set of journeys.  I was blessed to serve, but never called to serve like my brother or recently retired Bradley crewmate SSG Thornburg of Phoenix City, Alabama.  They gave so much more than ever asked of me, and I am humbled when I tally up the days away from "normal" life they racked up over the course of their careers.  My commanders don't know how much I learned from them...I served under some pretty darn good men.

So here are some of the photos I shared tonight.  They are a fraction of the photos I reviewed.  A fraction of the memories and family history of service...a fraction of what is needed to keep us free.  Even though some may not be in uniform...know they served with honor and distinction.



God Bless our Veteran's

[slideshow] God Bless our Veteran's of past and present.  May this generation raise up a new and valiant set of defenders who will keep our honor bright.

A special thanks to those I served with across the world.  And another thanks to my immediate family who served:  Dad, my brother Karl, Sister Sonja, DjaDja, Great Auntie Josephine, Great Uncle Walter, Uncle Joe, My Father-in-law, Great Grand Dad (in-law), and of course the lovely Army nurse I stole from the ranks at Ft Benning...my wife.



EXTRA EXTRA! As of today I am in business!  Everything is in with City Hall and approved.   I can now take orders and provide photography services to you!

It is an exciting day.  I have a long way to go before I can quit my day job, but now I can grow in new ways!

So if you are looking for someone with passion who wants to tell your story...I'm available and ready to serve you!


Beauty in the midst of our lives

Like most homes with four homeshooled children, and both parents involved in scouting leadership, life is a wild ride.  I am often wonder how I will grow as a photographer in the midst of all this "living." This weekend was no different.  I was at an all day adult scout training event, and I thought I would never get a chance to shoot something really nice.  Then I looked over and saw light streaking through the trees to a red bush being backlit.  It was like a fire alarm went off in my head...that might be the shot of the weekend!  I grabbed my P&S and started to crouch and follow light...frame the photos...switch to aperture mode to try a few creative visions.  Then I snapped away.

Meanwhile ten other adults looked at me with a grin and bewilderment.  I could almost hear, "What is that guy doing?"

Little did they know, I was chasing my dream while facilitating those of my family and friends.  It might be a road less traveled, but it is the one that has made all the difference.  It makes me who I am, and ever more appreciative of the beauty in the midst of our lives.