Monthly Archives: April 2012

A message from God

Yesterday’s post was a lot of lamenting on my part. As is usual, the blogosphere responded with a lot of really constructive suggestions that I’ll generate individual responses to shortly. The important message though is to point out rather indirectly that I’m sitting around complaining when really I have only myself to blame because I haven’t put the work into the whole photography thing. Long ago I had a business on the side that was reasonably successful and it only worked because I busted my behind to make it work. Photography is no different. You get out of something what you put into it and while I’ve been more than willing to go take the pictures I’ve done a terrible job at the other part of this concept: drumming up business. It’s not entirely surprising because I really do suck at self-promotion. That’s the part I need to work on and that’s the challenge!

This evening I went and walked about the neighborhood rather lazily snapping photos with the fish-eye. As I walked past the local church suddenly inspiration struck with the sun eclipsing behind the spire of Advent Lutheran Church in Zionsville. It was about this time that I realized that I need to devote a couple of nights a week to this process. If I expect to have anyone wanting my free services then I need to promote myself and distinguish myself from the crowd. So I sent off an email to the Zoo with yesterday’s pictures and Advent Lutheran Church. We will see what transpires but I thank the blogosphere for pointing out my error.

Anyway, a photo. This is a blog about photography after all.  The Advent Lutheran Church in Zionsville Indiana nearing dusk.

From Advent Lutheran Church 2012-04-16

22 Comments

Filed under Landscape photography, Zionsville

It’s all happening at the zoo. I do believe it, I do believe it’s true.

Tonight finds me in a bit of a quandary.  On one hand, I feel fairly good about the crop of photos from the day.  We took a trip to the zoo and came back with a fair number of interesting subjects.  All’s right with the world, eh?  On the other hand, I can’t help but feel that I’m still really missing out.

The other day I printed several hundred business cards.  Since that time I’ve been busily trying to find ways to distribute them.  I’m a firm believer that photography magic is out there just waiting to be had right here in my back yard if only I can connect with the right people.  From my perspective I’ve done everything right.  I’ve put together a portfolio of my work, I’ve advertised, I’ve offered my services for absolutely nothing.  What else can I possibly do?

To be fair, the people at work are starting to take notice.  I’ve been asked to do some photography at our annual company meeting and to do some marketing pics at a site visit to a customer in a few weeks.  I won’t deny that I was absolutely beaming at both prospects.  The idea that a software developer actually has a creative side is a bit of a hard sell but it seems to have taken hold. So I won’t deny my giddiness but my analytical side still questions why I have ANY free time left at all. Part of me won’t be satisfied until I have a non-paying photography job every single night of the week. It really shouldn’t be THIS hard to find jobs for which you don’t expect to be compensated. Never in the history of the universe has it been so hard to spend one’s time in the unrewarded service of others.

Alright, enough philosophical meanderings. Today, as I said, we wandered ourselves off to the zoo. Lately when I find myself in a particular locale, I tend to play the “pick a lens and stick to it” game. It causes one to stretch as a photographer and helps to put a certain spin on the day. Today’s choice was the 8mm fish-eye lens but ironically the photo chosen for the day is with a telephoto that I gave up and moved to after I realized that I’d already taken the 3 pictures that lend themselves to fish-eye. So much for consistency, eh?

This particular specimen seemed rather attentive to our presence. By attentive I mean that he stared at the exact same spot for 20 minutes and we managed to move ourselves to that spot. Ahh, the beauty of photographic illusion. Sometimes the photo comes to you and sometimes you go to the photo. At any rate, so closes today’s post. Do you have ideas for things towards which I should point my lens? For the love of my sanity, let me know what those are. Like I said, I work for free. You certainly can’t beat the price.

22 Comments

Filed under Indianapolis, nature Photography

Fatally Cold Feet

Friday morning I found a mosquito frozen to the roof of my car after an unexpected frost.  Since the light was poor and I did have that pesky JOB thing to go to, I collected him up for later photographing.  It turned out to be well worth the trouble of keeping him intact for a couple of days.

From Mosquito Macro – 2012-04-14
From Mosquito Macro – 2012-04-14

PS: Don’t forget to go like this page on Facebook!

13 Comments

Filed under Indianapolis, macro photography, nature Photography

The Spider’s Parlor

A few days ago as we were bringing in the groceries, I couldn’t help but notice a rather frustrated buzzing sound.  A brief investigation revealed a fly struggling in a spider’s web.  A few hundred photos later, I give you a time-lapse of the struggle and a rather chilling still.

From 2012-04-09

12 Comments

Filed under Lafayette, macro photography

Just another Day

As I look at my photo archives I realize that as of late my albums bear rather generic titles. In some ways it’s as if I’m just randomly throwing crap into the ocean of the internet. Looking at the results though I can’t help but feel quite a bit of pride. Each day that I bother to take photos I feel as if I come back with something pretty interesting despite the fact that my planning is exceptionally minimal. I enter each day with very few intentions and yet good still seems to result. On some deeper level I can’t help but ponder what that means. Am I just casting my lucky chafe to the wind or is there some larger statement being made? I like to think that the statement in question is simply that “the world is beautiful all by itself if you will only take time to look!” For every picture I do take there are a dozen that I cannot that I wish I could. Our world really is a beautiful one but how many of us actually take the time to realize that? While those who bear the official title of “professional photographer” click away at the same rehearsed, banal, redundant poses, I’m hopeful that some of us will still spend the time to capture the natural world as it is, without embellishment. OK, enough philosophy. How about some photos?

Over the past week or so I’ve been fiddling about with the idea of letting the camera do what it’s good at when it comes to time-lapse photography. Until this week I’ve been very strictly following the idea that you pick an exposure and let the camera carry on with it throughout the life of the video. This was advice received very early on and it made sense since you typically want a video to be exposed consistently. This week it’s become apparent that modern equipment is much smarter than the human eye so I’ve let the light meter do it’s job. As a result, I’ve managed to span the day-to-night transition quite adequately. (Though I do tend to go out and max out the exposure time at 6 seconds as light levels drop so the timing stays in step)

Today I spent a fair amount of time on the ground. These dandelions could not be resisted against the morning sun. (Oh, as usual, you can see the day’s whole album online.)

From Misc for 462012

Later in the day, Laura and I spent a good hour chasing these Tree Swallows around the Celery Bog.

From Misc for 462012
From Misc for 462012
From Misc for 462012
From Misc for 462012
From Misc for 462012

As usual, there were always plenty of Flowers.

From Misc for 462012

Spring is sprung, and what would spring be without the six-spotted tiger beetle?

From Misc for 462012

At the end of the day, there was, of course, more yard fluff to look at. I’m endlessly fascinated by dandelions. Those barbs remind one of a really terrible weapon of some sort.

From Misc for 462012

And what would any day outside be without a shy spider.

From Misc for 462012
From Misc for 462012

The last shot of this post strikes me as … well, very touchingly maternal. I’ve had many shots that people didn’t really appreciate until I wrapped a few words around them. This one just makes me think so much of parenthood. The dandelion is spent, its seeds exhausted, yet it looks back on this long line of hopeful seeds finding their way into the wind. It’s tragic and yet hopeful all at once. In retrospect I’m not exactly sure how this shot was even possible. It was just waiting there for me to find it.

From Misc for 462012

As I sit here at almost 1am, my mind wanders a bit from the creative to the material. Today when Laura and I were out shooting it became evident to me that her camera is starting to creep towards its last legs. Auto-focus is becoming increasingly questionable, sensitivity in the sensor is starting to decline. She’s using my Canon 20D which is a hand-me-down that I bought used several years ago. Her artistic desire is strong yet her equipment is failing. Many times on this blog I’ve gone on about how art, especially that drawn from the simplest realities of the world, should be free. It’s times like this though, with old equipment starting to fail that I wish my viewpoint was a tad more materialistic. New cameras do not buy themselves no matter how altruistic the intentions.

26 Comments

Filed under Art photography, Lafayette, Landscape photography, nature Photography, night photography

Operational Delay

It’s been three weeks since I last wrote. At least in part this is because my internet was out for nearly 2 weeks. In that time, I got into the habit of not bothering with the internet. There are, it seems, still an ocean of books awaiting my attention. However, I still wandered with the camera. I just didn’t quite bother to blog about it. At any rate, on with some non-textual somethings. As always, click the photo for more detail and to scroll through the bits of the album that I don’t bother to post about.

On St. Patty’s day Laura and I wandered about downtown. We found this couple getting their picture taken. I’m always amused by the gyrations that professional photographers put their clients though. Is this REALLY the best representation of their relationship? The same stale repeated poses that everyone has in their photos?

From 2012-03-18

Later in the weekend, we found ourselves at the IMA. I was tickled by this bug and his shadow.

From IMA 03-18-2012

It was a day for macro and shallow depth of field. I admired the detail on this silver urn

From IMA 03-18-2012

And this archer looks interesting at extremely close range.

From IMA 03-18-2012

The detail of this oriental urn is inspiring.

From IMA 03-18-2012

Jumping forward a week, I spent some time during the last storm trying to capture some lightning with variable success.

From 2012-03-25
From 2012-03-25

During some of the drier days, I traipsed about in the forest quite a bit. This next photo of an ant peering into the abyss is one of those that I find exceptionally gratifying. It is, so far, one that I only seem to appreciate.

From 2012-03-25

And these tiny snails love to nibble on mushrooms as much as I do.

From 2012-03-25

And no day outside is complete without some bug porn.

From 2012-03-25

Today was a trip to the IMA grounds.

From Misc Weekend of 4/1/2012
From Misc Weekend of 4/1/2012
From Misc Weekend of 4/1/2012

I shot a few time-lapses during this time too of course. On the canal…

Purdue University during passing periods…

And Lafayette downtown.

My apologies for the rather un-detailed brain-dump here. Catching up from weeks away is never pleasant either to do or behold. Check out my photo gallery  and my YouTube channel if you like. These are all updated more or less immediately with my work but it apparently takes me several weeks to write a blog entry sometimes. If all that’s not enough, you can go like the Facebook page too.

30 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized