Tuesday, December 29, 2009

R.I.P. Kim Peek

Monday, December 28, 2009

FANTASTIC reading: What every aspiring photographer should know http://ping.fm/N5bsn
Moxxie better be a good puppy for Kim & Matt today!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Had an early dinner at IHOP. Damn, those biscuits & gravy with sausage links are uber-filling, and yummy.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

We have 10 different cheeses, and I have little cheese experience, so we had a small "cheese tasting" tonight. Reviews: http://ping.fm/Hwu5S

For the love of cheese!

Outside of some of the common cheddar, mozzarella and "American" cheeses, I haven't got much experience with cheeses. But Karrin and I have picked up a bunch of cheeses at various places, and received a few others as gifts. We have something like nine different cheeses. Tonight I set up a platter with six of the cheeses, and I thought it might be fun to review them. I made a rule for myself: I have to actually have the cheese in my mouth as I'm writing about the flavor, so that I'm writing about the actual taste and not just my *memory* of the taste. So here are six cheeses, as experienced by somebody who's fairly inexperienced with cheeses. Applewood smoked -- spicy smokey flavor. Soft and creamy texture, only a bit more firm than spreadable cheese. The warm rich taste is very nice, largely thanks to the applewood I think. (Apparently smoking cheese over applewood is an Ancient Roman tradition.) I bought mine at Everybody's Store, a fantastic and unforgettable old-fashioned country grocer in Van Zandt, Washington. There was no brand name on the cheese. Finlandia Emmental -- An imported cheese from Finlandia Black Label, the aged Emmental is very like a swiss cheese. (Oh, wait... now that I look it up, Emmental *is* what is often called "Swiss Cheese.") It has a firm texture, rather hard for a cheese, with a very sharp and slightly bitter taste. Did I mention how sharp and tangy it is? Wow. It's got quite a lot more bite than the Swiss cheese I've tasted in the past. I wonder if it has to do with the aging? Honey & Pistachio cheese, by Australian cheese company Moondarra. Oh my god, I am in love with this one. It's soft enough to spread, but firm enough to eat with fingers if you like. Quite sweet in taste, with just a touch of tangy, smoky flavor. The pistachio adds variety to the texture and warmth to the taste. I'm instantly mad about this cheese, and can't get enough! Tillamook Sharp Cheddar -- I'm a longtime fan of Tillamook Sharp Cheddar (made locally in Oregon), so it's probably a bit unfair for me to review it. To me, it is the perfect cheddar. Tillamook's mild cheddar is very nice, but I prefer the slightly more adventurous bite of their sharp cheddar. Classic, creamy taste, and unlike many other cheddar cheeses, Tillamook's melts smoothly, not lumpy. If you are a cheese fan but you haven't had Tillamook, your cheese experience is simply incomplete. Get some! Queso Fresco -- Made even *more* locally at Gothberg Farms in Bow, WA, the queso fresco is a homemade goat cheese. It has a medium-firm texture, and a rich, milky flavor. Very nice; I love the simplicity of this pure, natural cheese, made from the milk of LaMancha goats. Dill Havarti -- very creamy taste, fairly soft but not spreadable. The cheese itself is very creamy and mild, while the dill adds a nice tangy zip to it. The contrast between the smoothness of the cheese and the bite of the dill is really nice. The Dill Havarti was also purchased at Everybody's Store, and had no brand name on it. We'll be having three more cheeses on new year's eve, including Norwegian Gjetost. (I actually got a little taste of Gjetost today -- it's intense and very unique, but I'll wait to write about it until we have it with the other cheeses next week.)

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Religion is mind-rape. But Merry Christmas anyway!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

I love the "Photoshop Disasters" blog. This entry is particularly awesome/horrific. http://ping.fm/oG2Rn

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

I'm with the werewolves! TEAM LUPIN!!!
Dear Montel: When we spend money on space exploration, we ARE spending it on Earth. You don't know jack s**t about it, so maybe you should keep your uninformed flap shut.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Happy Solstice to all the Satan-loving pagans out there! ;-)

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Brittany Murphy (who I, at least, knew best as the voice of Luanne on King of the Hill) died of cardiac arrest. She was only 32. Very sad...
Tired, aching all over & very depressed. I *BADLY* need a road trip out of town today, but it's not happening. I look forward to Monday.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Worst Photoshop disasters of the decade! Too funny! http://ping.fm/jPTeE

Friday, December 18, 2009

WARNING! As of today, Facebook will automatically start plunging the Earth into the Sun. To change this option, go to Settings --> Planetary Settings --> Trajectory then UN-CLICK the box that says 'Apocalypse.' Facebook kept this one quiet. Copy and paste onto your status for all to see.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The pain improved a lot Tues eve, though I'm feeling twinges again now. Saw "Half-Blood Prince" again; it was just as good the 2nd time.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Kidney stones slicing through me like hot, angry little knives. It's been going on day after day for weeks. So stressed & exhausted...

Monday, December 14, 2009

SO EXCITING!! As a designer I've wanted an open-source spot color matching system for a long time. One is in the making! http://ping.fm/QqJ7S

Saturday, December 12, 2009

2008 was SO productive and I was on a fast-track to success, shooting often and getting better with each one. 2009 has been disastrous. Everything has stalled. It's all been on hold for many months. My career and dreams are stone cold dead in the water.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Ice skating (for the first time in my life) with Karrin was awesome! Watching "The Shining" now, all full of Taco Bell.
I thought for sure the song in the Cadillac SRX commercial was by Morrissey/The Smiths. It's not. The bit they used sure sounds like it. http://ping.fm/6DaVj (the bit they use is at 1:25)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

I'm really seriously starting to hate that commercial for the Palm Pixie, with the awful pseudo-Chipmunks music.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

So frustrated with the kidney problems. Go away, pain, I want to do work & feel good.

Monday, December 07, 2009

Taking Moxxie to have his photo taken on Santa's lap. Unfortunately, I won't be the photographer.
11 months with Karrin and Moxxie. I love them both madly! And on January 6th it will be a year!

Friday, December 04, 2009

Can't wait to watch "Creepshow" with Karrin tonight! I'm pretty sure she'll love it.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Why don't I get copies of every photo? http://ping.fm/tuhce
Why don't I get copies of every photo? http://ping.fm/FrP2J
Who owns the photograph, and how can it be used? http://ping.fm/Ar7dp
Who owns the photograph, and how can it be used? http://ping.fm/zLxWI

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Left home with EXTREME back pain (kidney stones again, but worse than normal). After being violently ill, it's receded a notch. Slightly.
"Christmas Vacation" was funnier than I remembered when I saw it 20 years ago. But couldn't they TRY to be consistent when casting Rusty and Audrey?

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Here, this should cheer you up instantly... http://ping.fm/1BVdP

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Planning a big trip to aberdeen tomorrow.

Friday, November 27, 2009

full of turkey, pumpkin pie and fruit salad!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

First Thanksgiving

My first Thanksgiving with Karrin and Moxxie was beautiful. We woke up unusually early, in time to watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade. I put the turkey in the oven at 10:30, and just kept basting it as necessary. We had dinner around 4 p.m.: Turkey, mashed potatoes, my special turkey gravy, stuffing, buttery brussel sprouts, whole-berry cranberry sauce, and my family's traditional fruit salad. We gave Moxxie his own little plate, and sat him up in a chair. He was perfectly behaved, putting his front paws on the table to take bits of turkey off his own plate; he never made any attempt to climb onto the table or do anything wrong at all. Dinner was wonderful. The turkey turned out just perfect, and everything went well. I'm very happy with our first Thanksgiving together. Now, off to carve the rest of the bird, put leftovers away, and clean up.
Top 20 Unfortunate Lessons Girls Learn From "Twilight" http://ping.fm/cFASg

Top 20 Unfortunate Lessons Girls Learn From "Twilight"

http://ping.fm/LWd2s
Top 20 Unfortunate Lessons Girls Learn From "Twilight" http://ping.fm/jXy1d

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

OMG! I want one 'cos it has USB!! http://ping.fm/ET57z

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Argh! Why have I still not done my Thanksgiving shopping? Better get started!
Yes, it's viral, and rightly so! The Muppets sing "Bohemian Rhapsody" -- http://ping.fm/hRXd1
Gorgeous! This is JUST the type of photo I'm inspired by with my conceptual, antique-styled photography: http://ping.fm/IaJwb
The vulcanologist's favorite movie: "Four Weddings and a Fumerole."
I think the next Batman movie needs to have the Riddler played by Matthew Lesko. (Don't get it? Do a google image search.)
Hatred is an extremely strong thing which ought to be reserved for murderers, rapists, child molesters and Republicans. Oops, that was redundant.
What if Earth had rings? Incredibly freaking awesome! http://ping.fm/s8aLa
8 ways to kill ideas http://ping.fm/V8UcX

Monday, November 23, 2009

An article about the great photographer Darius Kinsey -- one of my heroes! -- with a photo from Barron, WA at the top! http://ping.fm/1aRBU
Randomly obsessing on the ghost town Barron, WA again. I've wanted to see it for several years. http://ping.fm/yM1R6
Randomly obsessing on the ghost town Barron, WA again. I've wanted to see it for several years. http://ping.fm/f90vO

Sunday, November 22, 2009

First Twilight was too girlie, but New Moon is much better. Good story, lots of metaphors about manhood, and Alice has a bigger role.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Getting ready to go see Twilight: New Moon. Go Team Alice!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Hana teriyaki for dinner, and now next top model finale!
Yet another big wind storm howling. Is that 5 this week? Yeah, think so.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

"I like things that have only one thing instead of two things." -- Philip J. Fry

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Power just came back on after three hours without. Can I finally have dinner? Stupid windstorm!

Monday, November 16, 2009

I am open and honest, and will not hide my problems like a coward. I have a major form of depression called dysthymia plus ADD. If you don't want honesty, un-follow me or un-friend me. But if you VALUE that honesty, thank you--you're a true friend!
I am open and honest, and will not hide my problems like a coward. I have a major form of depression called dysthymia as well as severe ADD. If you don't want honesty, un-follow me or un-friend me. But if you VALUE that honesty, thank you--you're a TRUE friend!
Still have horrible cold. coughs are getting really painful, and not very productive. And I'm out of medicine--and out of money.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

I need a sign like this! http://ping.fm/l79Nl
I've had a horrible cold or flu since Wed. afternoon; painful coughs, sniffles, congestion... This sucks. I'm so drained.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

What is your favorite literary first line? "It was a bright, cold day in April and the clocks were striking thirteen." I'm not telling what it's from. If you know it, you are officially awesome!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The kidney stone pain was continuous all morning and afternoon. Since evening, it comes and goes. I hope it just plain GOES overnight!

Monday, November 09, 2009

Crippling kidney stone pain. This is indescribable.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Yes, the House passed a health care reform bill. But DON'T get excited yet. It has to be reconciled with the more conservative Senate bill.
Nice afternoon in Everett with Karrin! Home again now, thinking about Next Top Model cycle 1, disk1, and maybe some overdue cleaning.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

One day you're in, and the next day -- you're out.
Remember remember the 5th of November, the gunpowder, treason and plot. I know of no reason why the gunpowder treason should ever be forgot.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

VOTE TODAY! And please, Washington State peeps, if you have a soul or a heart, vote YES on Referendum 71 and NO on Initiative 1033!!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Your special Halloween message: http://ping.fm/j2Uo6
Girls Costume Warehouse! BWAHAHA! http://ping.fm/m0F4Q

Friday, October 30, 2009

After work I'll be taking some of the cutest Halloween pics ever with freshly-groomed puppy, and more tomorrow in the park.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Tom from MySpace gives Facebook a try. http://ping.fm/kSVZw

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

"I don't have faith in faith, I don't believe in belief, You can call me faithless, You can call me faithless./ But I still cling to hope, And I believe in love, And that's faith enough for me, And that's faith enough for me." -- Rush

Monday, October 26, 2009

What were the skies like when you were young? They went on forever. When we lived in Arizona, and the skies always had little fluffy clouds in 'em, and... they were long... and clear and... there were lots of stars at night...

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Six pro photographers share their most guarded digital secrets http://ping.fm/LgM3x

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

If you haven't checked out Porcupine Tree, their video for "Time Flies" is available FREE on iTunes right now. Go grab it! Go grab it! Go grab it! NOW! http://ping.fm/AfJ1k iTunes

Monday, October 19, 2009

Just setting up a blog for models of all skill levels, from brand new to experienced working pros, at http://ping.fm/5km8J

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Karrin is in the new issue of "B'ham Alive"-- 3 photos, one being a 2-page spread!! Grab a copy at Haggen, Woods Coffee or Village Books

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Chowder & shrimp cocktails with karrin! <3 awesome lightning storm right now.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

If you don't have Halloween plans yet, how about this? http://ping.fm/udSl3

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Karrin's in the new issue of "Bellingham Alive"! Get it at Haggen or Woods Coffee.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Dental mannequins are SO creepy and so cool! http://ping.fm/3Mqn6

Monday, October 12, 2009

"Where the HELL is my chiffon?!" -- Andraé in Project Runway season 2 ("Andraé? What happened to Andraé?")

Sunday, October 11, 2009

The truth about deadly, tampered Halloween candy. This is AWESOME! Read the yellow part at least. http://ping.fm/xsiYS
How Twilight should have played out: http://ping.fm/EafHV

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Making spaghetti while Karrin and puppy relax on the couch. Can't wait for dinner!

Friday, October 09, 2009

Wow, I'm back online sooner than expected, thanks to the Jezebel Rebels who just paid me for a photo shoot. Holy sh*t, can I relax now?

OFFLINE!

I have no internet access for the foreseeable future. That means I can't read or reply to emails or any online communications at all. I have no idea when I'll get back online. I hope it is soon, since all of my secondary income (photography) business is conducted online. I have to pay Comcast $185 before service is restored. More pressing, my electricity is going to be shut off on October 20 if I don't come up with $120 before then — and Oct. 20th is my next pay day, too late to keep the power on. Plus I've just missed three days of work due to a bad flu bug. So we're in a very bad mess right now. Sorry for being unable to reply to any emails or online messages of any sort. I hope we find a way to get back online soon.
I have NO INTERNET for the foreseeable future & no mobile device. To contact me text or phone 360-920-9630.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

My internet got shut off. Im so screwed. Text if you want to reach me 360-920-9630

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Cable shut off today. Internet shutting off any time now. Unspeakably upset, angry, depressed. Just paid $200! What do they want?
Cable was shut off today. Internet expected to go off at any time now. Unspeakably upset, angry, depressed.
Caught between needing to work so I make money, versus the flu bug I've got. Ugh. I need the money, but I will NOT infect anybody!

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Woke up with sore throat, tight chest & cough. Reluctantly called in sick. Sipping TheraFlu now and feeling awful.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Preparing to do a paid shoot on Monday after work. I'm determined to give the money's worth; reputation is EVERYTHING!

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Karrin's been sick & thinks it may be H1N1 ("swine flu"). I've been a bit sick, and am just now feeling warm, dizzy & nauseous. *concern*

Monday, September 28, 2009

Return of the back pain. Slowly though. I hate kidney stones i hate them i hate them arrrgh!
I loved "Watchmen." Helluva good movie, and thought-provoking.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

I'm hired for a paid shoot next Monday, in a week. Very happy -- I really needed this about now!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Hey Bellinghamsters! Hurry down to Film Is Truth for a FREE rental and cookie, tonight only! It's their anniversary celebration!
Wiped the hard drive last night and did a clean install. It's like a brand new computer! It'll take a while to set it back up though.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Processing & posting photos for a couple hours, then I'll join Karrin for a marathon of "Next Top Model." Been a while since I posted photos -- here goes...
Cane home from work a bit early. Nasty kidney pains. Going to get subs with K-girl then relax & try to feel better. This sucks.
Kidney stone hell.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

"Redecorating" the office. That is to say, everybody is pushing printers around and then wondering why they don't work anymore. Whee.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

When I'm down I drive the hearse...

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

PT's "Remember Me Lover" stuck in my head. And if you don't know what PT stands for, you haven't been watching my updates closely! ;-)
"A Haunting In Connecticut" was interesting but not at all scary. Also it was obviously trying to be for today what "Poltergeist" was for 1982.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Weasel Pot Pie! This guy opened for Porcupine Tree. He's freakin amazing. Check it out! http://ping.fm/rnQGH

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Off to Seattle to pick Karrin up after she had a big paid shoot for "The Stranger." Gonna crank Porcupine Tree up LOUD the whole way! :-D
Weasel pot pie!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

My lyrics game: When listening to music, change ALL occurrences of the word "love" to "shove", and "dream" to "scream." Try it! It's fun!
Today's plan" Northgate Mall, Silver Platter Records, and maybe Marie Callander's for dinner.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Yay! Going to see "Inglourious Basterds" shortly! I loves me some Tarantino. The commercials make this one look a bit Coen-brothers-ish.
Sweet! Karrin and I are identifiably visible in one of the Porcupine Tree tour photos! I circled us in yellow. http://ping.fm/iLNdN

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Making split pea soup for my supermodel sweetheart! <3 And I heard the commercial for Porcupine Tree's new album on TV a few minutes ago.
Making split pea soup for my supermodel sweetheart. And I heard the commercial for Porcupine Tree
4 awkward moments in Facebook "likes". LOL! http://ping.fm/gQrj1
"Hide behind the pile of dead bards!"

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

How I Met Steven Wilson of Porcupine Tree -- http://ping.fm/HibMa

How I mete Steve Wilson of Porcupine Tree

On Tuesday, September 15th Porcupine Tree played the Moore Theatre in Seattle. It was the opening night of the tour. Since I'm a member of the elite commando squad of super-fans "Residents Of A Blank Planet" I had bought exclusive advance tickets months earlier. So after work I picked Karrin up and we headed to Seattle. We found reasonably priced parking right on the opposite corner from the theatre, then snapped a few shots of the theatre and the marquee announcing Porcupine Tree. After documenting the building and marquee, Karrin and I headed downhill to the waterfront and grabbed dinner at my favorite Seattle restaurant, Steamers. She had calamari and I had Alaskan cod. We then headed back uphill and picked up my tickets at the box office, along with blue wristbands which got us in before everybody else. We found our seats in the fifth row (row E, seats 7 and 8). Eventually everybody else was allowed in and the place began to fill. The opening act one a one-man-band called That One Guy. I had almost no expectations, but he was fantastic. His musical instrument was an interesting home-made looking essentially like lengths of steel pipe with lots of joints, plus a few buttons he used to trigger sounds. He first played the pipe by bowing it like a cello and controlling the pitch with a gentle touch at various locations. Soon he began also slapping it for percussion, and triggering samples with the two buttons. Two pedals on the floor allowed him to control bass drum samples. Overall his act was exceptionally physical from all the movement it required to play his unique instrument effectively. And listening to the music he made, nobody would have ever guessed it was all one person. After playing the first two tracks from their new album "The Incident" ("Occam's Razor" and "Blindhouse") they paused, and Steve Wilson announced that they were going to perform the entire 55-minute suite/album. He also mentioned that this was the first time they would ever play the new material for an audience. After that, they launched into the rest of the album, and played straight through to the end. I don't believe there were any more interruptions, and Steve didn't speak again until after the last track. As I expected, "Drawing the Line" rocked. "The Yellow Windows of the Evening Train" was accompanied by footage of flowers blooming and trees gently waving in a breeze, and then came "Time Flies", accompanied by the projections that are seen in the online video. "Octane Twisted" had a projection video in which we see the familiar little metal stick-man seen previously in the footage for "The Start of Something Beautiful" and "Sleep Together." The film depicted the unfortunate guy getting on a train, only to have the train run wild, hitting breakneck speeds, until it reaches a trestle bridge. The bridge breaks and cars go flying in a disaster. After the last song ("I Drive the Hearse") Steve again stepped up and announced the intermission. When they returned they went to their back catalogue, presenting (not in this order) "The Start of Something Beautiful", "The Sound of Muzak", "Russia On Ice", "Lazarus", "Normal", the heavy middle section of "Anesthetise", "Way Out of Here", and for the encore "Mother And Child Divided." Strangely, I can't recall whether they played "Blackest Eyes" or "Strip The Soul" but I'm pretty sure one of the two was in the set. I was stunned that "Fear of A Blank Planet" wasn't in the setlist; before the show I would have bet money that it would be played, I was so certain. Nothing from "Signify" was played during the show, and they didn't go back any further/deeper than "Russian On Ice" from the "Lightbulb Sun" album -- but that's to be expected these days. At one point early in the second set Steve spoke between songs saying (paraphrasing), "I have to admit, we were really nervous about playing all that new material for an audience for the first time." At another point -- I believe it was as Steve strapped on the acoustic guitar for "Lazarus" -- he said (paraphrasing again), "The metalheads in the room are all thinking, 'Oh great, he's going for the acoustic guitar again.'" That got laughs. After the last song of the encore, I pulled out the point-and-shoot camera and took a couple photos and shot a very short (maybe 5 seconds) video clip of the band waving at the end. Here is the video. After the show I waited outside at the front of the theatre and met my longtime Internet friend Johnny V. I've known from online for years and years, but this was the first time we actually got to meet. Johnny told me he had been talking to Porcupine Tree's tour manager in the last few days, and that the band might possibly come out to greet a few fans. Something like 40 minutes later, as roadies loaded black tour cases onto the bus behind us, Steve Wilson came out. He looked completely exhausted, spent, but he stopped to sign autographs for about 25 fans. He signed a sticker for "The Incident" album for me. I would have brought something better to sign if I'd known, but I had no clue I might meet him until Johnny mentioned it after the show.
Back from the Porcupine Tree show. Holy crap! I can't believe I actually met Steven Wilson. Post coming up, with a few photos...

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Heading to Seattle with Karrin to see Porcupine Tree at the Moore Theatre!

For ALL my friends who have ears

If you've known me any length of time at all, you've probably heard me gush and blather senselessly about my favorite band, the fairly-obscure British quartet called Porcupine Tree. I first discovered them when I was running an online radio station about ten years ago, and since then I've only loved them more and more as time goes by. Here is a very brief, quick introduction to them, thanks to YouTube. IF YOU DON'T WANT TO READ, JUST SKIP TO THE LINKS BELOW FOR A "QUICK FIX." PLEASE, GIVE THEM A LISTEN! Over the years, Porcupine Tree's sound has ranged very broadly, covering everything from the underground metal scene to psychedelia to electronica to alt-pop. But through their entire history there is a continuous, steady sense of respect for music not just as amusement but as genuine art. In this age when even a four-minute song is too long and demanding for the stunted attention span of the average listener, Porcupine Tree does not cater to the merely-average listener. They are one of the few bands who don't just write songs; they craft entire, cohesive albums -- complete works with a sense of unity and direction, with a cohesive theme both musically and lyrically. They have written albums telling an emotionally griping ghost story (2005's "Deadwing"), albums about serial killers and others who lack a conscience (2002's "In Absentia"), and the devastating impact that hyper-exposure to media and technology has on kids (2007's "Fear Of A Blank Planet"). Their new studio album, "The Incident" (which is just now hitting store shelves), addresses how media reports dehumanize life-altering events by depersonalizing them -- horrific tragedies are reduced to mere "incidents." Porcupine Tree attempts to inject humanity back into a few such events, while interweaving poignant autobiographical vignettes from band leader Steven Wilson's own life. "Time Flies" is the first video from "The Incident", and breaks the somber mood of much of the album with dreamy, romanticized lyrics: "I was born in '67, the year of Sargeant Pepper, and Are You Experienced..." "Time Flies" by Porcupine Tree http://ping.fm/gE0vc Their previous album, 2007's "Fear of A Blank Planet", dealt with how a mix of technology, media saturation, and excessive medication are ruining the lives of kids today. The title track sums up the album's theme. Here is the video. "Fear of A Blank Planet" by Porcupine Tree http://ping.fm/qIhvo The track "Way Out of Here" addresses the desperate longing for escape from the numbness and stress. "Way Out of Here" by Porcupine Tree http://ping.fm/0Pjzg For a rather jarring change of pace, going back ten years to their 1999 album "Stupid Dream" you find a more playful -- but no less meaningful -- side of Porcupine Tree. Their song "Piano Lessons" addresses the shattering of idealism and naiveté through a cynical girl who teaches piano. The video flirts with the absurd, the psychedelic, and a touch of steampunk sensibilities. "Piano Lessons" by Porcupine Tree http://ping.fm/O3yMK And finally, a live performance of one of their most beautiful, romantic songs, "Trains" from their 2002 album "In Absentia." This performance is from their live DVD "Arriving Somewhere But Not Here." "Trains" (live) by Porcupine Tree http://ping.fm/4ZFdm Karrin and I will be seeing Porcupine Tree live at the Moore Theatre in Seattle tonight, Tuesday, September 15th. I got advance tickets through the exclusive fan club, and expect we'll probably be right up front by the stage like when I saw them in 2007. I can't wait! FOR MORE ON PORCUPINE TREE: Their official website: http://ping.fm/UYgKG Follow them (and hear/see more) on MySpace: http://ping.fm/hQb8c
Just saw "Westworld" again. Yul rules! Tomorrow right after work Karrin & I go to Seattle to see Porcupine Tree at the Moore!

Monday, September 14, 2009

How 20 popular websites looked when they first launched. http://ping.fm/taTTF
Greek Festival was delicious! Lamb gyros, filo cheese puffs and baklava. Next big event: Porcupine Tree concert Tuesday night!!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Heading to Greek Fest. Karrin looks gorgeous! And I can't wait to shoot with Kelsey again!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

In response to Glenn Beck getting the keys to Mt Vernon, Jon Stewart has officially been offered the keys to Bellingham!! http://ping.fm/UUERf

Friday, September 11, 2009

"You know, it took me about a year to start hating the 9/11 victims’ families. It took me about a year... When I see 9/11 victim family, you know, on television, or whatever, I’m just like, ‘Oh, shut up.’ I’m so sick of them. Because they’re always complaining. And we did our best for them." -- Glenn Beck, founder of The 9/12 Project

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Car battery died while out. Got jump but only got 6 blocks. We bushed it a bit then abandoned it. Home now panicking. I'm screwed.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Facebook is launching a Mac OS X native application. Looks sweet! I'll try it. http://ping.fm/fU1lR

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Obama is addressing congress tomorrow night. I think he'll talk about how awesome the Beatles Rock Band is & how great the remasters sound
And in really shitty photography news.... http://ping.fm/KLDEI

Monday, September 07, 2009

Had a good shoot with a new model, and now heading up join Karrin at her parents. I miss her badly the very moment she's out of sight...

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Rain is viciously beating on the house like it wants to pound the roof to splinters.... on my way to meet Karrin for dinner. She's just finished a shoot.
Really nice day in Seattle with Machine. His salmon dip is freakin delicious, and the eggplant casserole was awesome. What a great guy!

Saturday, September 05, 2009

On our way to seattle to work with machine! Woo!

Friday, September 04, 2009

Going to see Machine on Saturday afternoon. Can't wait!
Glenn Beck doesn't even deserve the keys to the restroom of the gas station at the Anderson Road exit, much less the city. Scumbag!

Thursday, September 03, 2009

To 10 signs you might not be a Libertarian. AWESOME! http://ping.fm/3KQCJ

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

The cell phone in 1910. This is just. freaking. awesome. Wow. http://ping.fm/oU6m7
Doing a late-night photo shoot with Karrin. Corset, pinstriped black hat & pants. Hope it turns out as good as envisioned.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Sick today, at home. Feeling awful. Tomorrow better be a big improvement.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Very excited about Karrin's bright future! And I hope mine goes as well in time!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Assisted Billy Pegram today as he shot with Karrin. Feeling VERY optimistic about Karrin's future & a little more hopeful about mine also

Friday, August 28, 2009

Photoshop Disasters. Hilariously awful, and awfully hilarious! http://ping.fm/KUgS4
There's no leopard like Snow Leopard!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

"That which we are, we are -- one equal temper of heroic heart, strong in will, to strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield." -- Sen. Ted Kennedy, quoting Tennyson's "Ulysses" in 1980

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Wake up, throw all hopes and dreams in garbage & instead go to work, work till exhausted, come home, sleep. Repeat daily until dead.
400 years ago today Galileo announced his invention, the telescope. http://ping.fm/xcqDf
Saw "How To Lose Friends And Alienate People" starring Simon Pegg and Kirsten Dunst. Unexpectedly totally awesome and funny!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Hmm... Ponyo. Wasn't that an album by The Cars?

Saturday, August 22, 2009

This vacation was truly miserable. The fair on Monday was nice, but every single other day was miserable. This has been just awful.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Thinking about SERIOUS photo work. Need to IMMEDIATELY start perusing Vogue, Elle, Marie Claire, Seventeen, etc. & give myself assignments.
Thinking about SERIOUS photo work. Need to IMMEDIATELY start perusing Vogue, Elle, Mademoiselle, Marie Claire, Seventeen, etc.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Took 5 hours to limp the car from Eatonville to Bellingham at 45 MPH. Incredibly stressful & exhausting. Early part of day was GREAT tho.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

On our way to mount rainier!

Monday, August 17, 2009

And my week of vacation has officially started. Heading to the Northwest Washington Fair with Karrin & family.
Trying to finish and post a shot or two of Liisa before bed. Tomorrow Karrin & I hit the NW Washington Fair.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Had a really good shoot with Liisa today. But I miss my Karrin so much! Going to pick her up in a few...

Friday, August 14, 2009

Degrassi Goes Hollywood tonight! Woot!
Trip to heave and ho! Last night we rode the Octopus ride at the Skagit Fair. FUN! But was dizzy and a bit nauseous the rest of the night

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Les Paul was alive and well, but then suddenly -- whammy! But don't fret...

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

I don't believe in angels; I believe in doctors & nurses. I don't believe in demons; I believe in insurance companies and their advocates.
The Death of My (Barely Begun) Photography Career -- http://ping.fm/K7zy7

The End of My (Barely Begun) Photography Career

I got my camera back in March 2006. An Olympus EVOLT E-500. Not a serious professional camera by any stretch of the imagination, but it was better than the Nikon point-and-shoot I had been using before. It came with two lenses: a 14-45mm (not wide enough to be a useful wide angle lens) and a 40-150mm (not powerful enough to be a really useful zoom). It wasn't professional, but I made do with it, and a lot of people never knew I was only using a cheap entry-level SLR. For almost three and a half years I shot exclusively with it. I could never afford to buy any other lenses, so everything was shot with the two lenses that came with it. And I was never able to afford to buy another body as back-up. I always knew that if something happened to it, my photography efforts would immediately die -- end of story. Last weekend, the 40-150mm lens (which I use for about two-thirds of my shooting) went belly-up. All I have now is the 14-45mm. That's not enough to keep pursuing photography. I have a shoot lined up for this Sunday, and I'm talking to a few people about other shoots. I should be able to finish those shoots using just the 14-45mm lens, though it will be limiting. But I'm going to wind things down after completing the shoots I'm already discussing and planning. I can't afford a new lens, and I certainly can't even DREAM about replacing the low-end, aging Olympus with a more serious camera. My only digital camera is dying, and so my photography career dies with it. Photography is for wealthy people -- or at least people who are making a profitable living. My girlfriend, a model who has recently been catching some serious good breaks, recently did a shoot in Seattle with somebody who has a $50,000 camera. That's unimaginable to me. I can't afford a modern, more serious camera; I can't even afford to replace the lens that just died. Photography is for the affluent, not the poor -- regardless of passion, and regardless of talent. Talent and passion can't buy you a new camera or replace a broken lens. I could have been professional, but I needed a business partner. With my full-blown ADD, I needed somebody else to handle the task of promoting my work and contacting clients, magazines, ad agencies, and such to sell my work and commission shoots. It would have been lucrative for me and the business partner, but nobody saw the potential or cared enough. I guess nobody believed in me as much as I believed in myself -- and maybe they were right. So now, my photography career is dead before it really got started. So I'll now wrap up the last shoots that are in the works, struggling through them with just the 14-45mm lens, and then I'll just put the lights away, dismantle the backdrop support and put it in the closet, and turn away. I just hope these last few shoots can be really outstanding, because I'd rather go out with a bang than a whimper. I leave you with a few of my favorite shots from my career. Thank you to all the models who worked with me. I am grateful for the opportunity to photograph you.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Moving Karrin's big furniture in today -- new bed, 2 dressers, rocking chair... Excited and happy!

Monday, August 10, 2009

(looks outside) Wow. It went from early-August to mid-November overnight! Does that mean Halloween candy is marked down on-sale?

The Small-Time Scam That Can Kill Photography

A note especially for models, but also for photographers: The vast majority of serious, working professional photographers do not make their money by taking pictures; they make their money by selling the finished photo, by either (1) selling prints of the photo for use or display, or by (2) selling a license to usage rights which allow the photo to be used by another party -- magazines, ad agencies, book publishers, etc. Very little money is ever made from the act of taking photos; it's the sale of the finished product that makes it possible for people to make a living at photography. Without copyright laws to protect the rights of photographers to profit from their work, there would be no such thing as a professional photographer. Here's how a lot of people make it impossible for photographers to make their living, and essentially rip the photographer off: A photographer is hired to do some work -- senior portraits, wedding photos, whatever. The photographer shoots the photos for cheap (shooting rates for most photographers are far too low to make a living just by taking the photos). The photographer works with the client to select the final photos, and then he presents them with proofs. The photographer is at this point counting on the client to buy a bunch of prints so that he can stay in business, feed his family, pay bills, and just make his living. The photographer knows that many people who know the client will want prints, and the sale of those prints is where the money is made... But the client purchases only one print of each photo they like from the photographer. The photographer winds up making no profit on it, or even losing money depending on his investment and how his rates are distributed. The client takes those single prints to Costo and has Costco make a bunch of copies for less than a dollar each. This is how professional photography gets killed. Fortunately, all of the reputable, quality places that make prints of photos will tag any photos that look professional and will insist that the person making prints show a signed "permission to print" form. This way the printer not only makes sure that photography remains a career option, but -- more to their own interest -- makes sure that photographers don't sue the living fuck out of the printer for engaging in obvious copyright infringement. So, to all models doing TF* shoots, if you want prints then you have to insist that you get the signed "permission to print" form from any photographer whose photos are worth printing. It's for their own protection that such forms are required, and any photographer who isn't a scumbag trying to trick you will be happy that you ask, because it shows you know how professional photography works, and you respect the rights of photographers to make a living.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

I met machine! Must have gabbed for an hour about photography. Great guy!

Friday, August 07, 2009

"The Gamers: Dorkness Rising" rocked! Hilarious! Now I have to unexpectedly drive to Seattle 'cos Karrin missed the last bus. Oops.
Watching "The Gamers: Dorkness Rising." (Hi, Jen!)
Upset & irritable. Karrin is shooting in Seattle with a photographer I've wanted to meet for years. Getting more upset by the minute.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Available to shoot Friday, Aug. 7th, in my studio at 7PM. Contact me NOW if interested! See my updated shooting info: http://ping.fm/AsXTh
Just revised & updated my Model Mayhem profile. If you're a model, photog or MUA, have a look! http://ping.fm/IIUn4

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

My comprehensive, in-depth review of Mi Mexico restaurant in Bellingham, WA: **YUM!!**
Someday I am gonna grow wings, a chemical reaction, hysterical and useless, hysterical and--

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

DEEPLY digging the album preview for "The Incident"! http://ping.fm/29ET3 Holy crap I can't wait to hear it all!

Monday, August 03, 2009

Suddenly I have more plans and more possible shoots this month than I can keep in my head. I need to start organizing & planning better!
Screw shark week -- I'm waiting for butterfly shrimp week. Fried in tempura. Yum.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Yesterday: Gasworks in Seattle, then to Westport and finally family in Aberdeen. Today: picnic in Cornwall Park, then washed my car.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Did my first studio shoot (with somebody other than Karrin) since February. Psyched about how it's looking. I NEED to get back to shooting.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Off to work. It reached 106 degrees Fahrenheit yesterday. Unspeakably miserable. I hope it's not so bad today.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Played in sprinkler with supermodel and pooch, then walked in park, and finally had DQ ice cream. 10:30 pm and it's TOO FREAKIN HOT!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Swam in Lake Padden with Karrin & Moxxie. Now getting the best burgers around from Boomers. Dear sweet satan do I ever love Boomers!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

We just saw Harry Potter 6. Awesome! The darkest HP for sure. Also <3 Luna Lovegood!
My dog can eat a whole watermelon!!
I will be myself from now on. I won't sacrifice everything, not myself and not my career.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Shot photos on sunny Mt Baker early today, then drove though downpours and big lightning storm on the way home. We're home now.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Heading out to the cabin with wonderful, gorgeous girlfriend and cute li'l puppy for swimming and mountaintop fun. Be back Saturday!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

I know how to pursue artistic ambition & seek to be better at what I do. But business isn't what I do. I need a serious business partner.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Thinking about "Rubin & Ed"... "My cat can eat a whole watermelon."
Where the hell are my new lights? This is getting really irritating.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

I need to get this photography thing going, but need a business partner... or agent... I don't know WHAT I need. What's the next step?!?

Monday, July 20, 2009

40 years ago today my mother put me in a high-hair front of the TV to watch the moon landing. I was exactly 6 months old.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Hitting the road for an all-day trip with Karrin & Moxxie around the Olympic Peninsula to beaches, Forks, and then visiting family.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Bad news: Walter Cronkite has died. Good news: NASA just released cleaned up, enhanced & expanded films of the moon landing 40 years ago!
Plotting another lo-o-ong adventure driving around the Olympic Mtns to the beaches, Forks & Aberdeen this weekend.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

For they marched up to Bastille Day, the king will kneel and claim his bloody prize! BastilleDay Rush

Saturday, July 11, 2009

I'm going to be losing my Internet access very shortly, probably next week sometime. My site will be gone, & email access & all web access.
Got beautiful shots at Blanchard Mtn. Going to bed. Saturday we plan to go to the cabin...

Friday, July 10, 2009

Going up to Blanchard Mountain for a quick shoot with Karrin. Hope the sunlight isn't too harsh for good shooting.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Was planning to visit family this weekend, but Mom is sick. :-( Might reschedule.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Q: How is Michael Jackson different from Legos? A: Children can still play with Legos.
The ONLY reason to be interested in a dead child molester's funeral is to confirm for certain the MF'er is definitely dead. michaeljackson
The ONLY reason to be interested in a dead child molester's funeral is to confirm for certain that the m.f.'er is definitely dead.

Monday, July 06, 2009

As of today, Karrin and I have been together for six months. Half a year with her. (And Moxxie, too.) <3

Sunday, July 05, 2009

The 4th at Lake Cavanaugh was great. Just on the way out we passed a wildfire on Mount Cavanaugh. Photo: http://ping.fm/1vUZv
The 4th at Lake Cavanaugh was great. Just on the way out we passed a wildfire on a hilltop. Took photos. I hope some turn out.

Saturday, July 04, 2009

I don't like to pimp my photos this way nowadays, but please do take a peek at my two newest shots! http://ping.fm/QgWi8
Happy Underpants-dance day!

Friday, July 03, 2009

Back from a beautiful day in the HOT North Cascade Mtns. Tomorrow we go to Lake Cavanaugh for the 4th. And I <3 Karrin & Mox!
Heading out into the North Cascades with Karrin & Moxxie!

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Do you think at his funeral, Michael Jackson will do the "Thriller" dance?
Woot! I just got the old Pocket PC online via wifi without buying a plan. Sweet!

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

I was awake and felt the earthquake. It's always a weird feeling. http://ping.fm/fMqkj
Happy Canada Day to my friends in the Great White North!!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Rick Astley found dead in Berlin hotel room. http://tr.im/qkh2 Please retweet!
Well into Degrassi High disk 3. Woot!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Explored some Mount Vernon parks Sunday. Little Mountain Lookout is particularly awesome!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Back from the Bell Vernon AKC dog show in Mount Vernon with Karrin & Moxxie. Got lots of photos then had ice cream at The Big Scoop.

Friday, June 26, 2009

She's sixteen years old, yet forever an infant -- the Curious Case of Brooke Greenberg. Amazing. http://ping.fm/kW2P1
Photographer remembers Fawcett's iconic poster shoot. A short, very sweet read. http://ping.fm/j0R3s
Jackson, Fawcett, McMahon... http://ping.fm/PoBA8

Thursday, June 25, 2009

12 things you THOUGHT were bad for you -- http://ping.fm/th1OG
Pondering an important, complex photo I've been working on for some time. It got to be exactly right!
NEWS: Supreme Leader of Iran orders immediate stop to Jon and Kate divorce

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Hump day? Ew, that's gross and dirty!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Ninety-nine bottles of chloroform on the wall, ninety-nine bottle for chloroform...
11 things the Bible bans but you do anyway. http://ping.fm/MhrpT

Monday, June 22, 2009

First look at Tim Burton's Alice In Wonderland. Wicked cool! http://ping.fm/QQgUS
Single income is not enough. I am working my ass off, killing myself over it, and it's not enough. Single income is NOT enough.
Exhausted and feel like s#&t. I need another day off. Not feeling good.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Slept 1 hour at the cabin. At dawn we drove up to Heather Meadows on Mt Baker and I photo'd the mist & light in the hills. We're home now.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

We're going back to the cabin Sat-Sun! Yay! http://ping.fm/kyTRT
The article "Twittering helps shrews find their way" wasn't what I thought. http://ping.fm/r4PKH
Wow. The secret life^d^d^d liver of Steve Jobs. http://ping.fm/XQdXn #apple

Friday, June 19, 2009

Degrassi High season 1 disk 1 arrived! Watching now. Woo!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Sore and tired. Thinking about a girl and a dog. I love them both like crazy.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Deeply immersed in reading & writing about Morse Hardware, Robert I Morse, Cecil A Morse, Pierre B Cornwall, and old town Sehome & Whatcom
We took Moxxie to Cornwall Park in his new shoulder carrier, then to Elizabeth Park. Home now. Hot dog lunch, then writing Morse essays.
Been watching poor injured puppy constantly. I have to buckle down and finish writing two articles for the Morse Foundation tonight.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Last night I grabbed http://ping.fm/24GaO for myself.

Friday, June 12, 2009

We're home with Moxxie now. His wound in stitched, he has a cone on, and starts medications tomorrow. I feel terrible about it.
Moxxie got cut while i was clipping him. We're at emergency clinic getting stitches. Traumatized.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

I have a fashion shoot Friday, then Karrin & I are planning to hunt ghost towns in Okanogan Saturday -- Bodie & maybe Molson or Chesaw!!
I have a commercial shoot Friday, then Karrin & I are planning to hunt ghost towns in Okanogan -- Bodie, and maybe Molson or Chesaw!!
Simple, great advice for everybody: How To Be More Photogenic http://ping.fm/Kdyd1

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Left side of neck has been killing me for 24 full hours. Just took three aspirin. If that doesn't work, maybe lysergic acid diethylamide?
Suddenly I need an ordering system so people can buy photos, pay, and provide a shipping address. And I need labels for the photo backs!
Suddenly I need an ordering system so people can buy photos, pay, and provide a shipping address. And I need labels for the photo backs!
Tuesday night's dinner included an appetizer of frog's legs. There was nothing weird about it. Yummy, essentially like buffalo wings.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

It's official -- Karrin lives with me now. Time to figure out where her furniture goes.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Going to some big thing Sunday afternoon. I'm weirded out and nervous. Looking forward to arriving home again afterward.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Everybody wants something, they take your mon-ey -- and never give up!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Hmm! Some of my friends around Seattle are talking about wind and thunder. The sky is still totally clear here so far. Is a storm coming?

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Still having bad stomach pains. Better than this morning, but still not good. This rather sucks.
Really violently ill. Ugh. Feels like food poisoning, but I'm not sure if that's it. Ugghh...

Monday, June 01, 2009

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Busted my ass processing photos, and am still just half done. Have to finish them Sunday night. Blurgh....

Friday, May 29, 2009

Oh, Mr Belpit, your legs are so swollen!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Exhausted beyond words. Good -- freakin' -- NIGHT!! Zzzzz...

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

I have a paid photography gig immediately after work Wednesday! Yay! Now if only I could get several a week... I need a business partner.
Drove all over Western WA Monday, from Port Townsend through Port Angeles, Forks, the beaches, Aberdeen, & back up I-5 to home. SOO tired!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Might be heading to Forks today, for Karrin's enjoyment -- and the Pacific beaches for my own. Nervous about such a big trip.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Back from the cabin. Got tons of photos of Ski to Sea cyclists passing, and of Mt. Baker. BTW, the ice cream in Glacier rocks. #skitosea

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Heading out to the Snowline cabin past Glacier, right on the Ski to Sea route! Will be back Sunday evening. #skitosea
Very frustrated that I missed the Ski to Sea parade. I was asked to photograph a particular float and was excited about it. Ugh.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

A long holiday weekend is coming up and I have no special plans. Sucks. :-(

Monday, May 18, 2009

Wow. I got asked to do another interview, right after the first! Here it is: http://ping.fm/mQK4e

Exposed! A second interview with Dave Ward Photography

Hot on the heels of my first interview, I was asked for another interview. This interview was conducted by Dani.

In the position you now hold, what do you do on a typical day?

As an independent, part-time professional photographer, I'm currently very free to focus on whatever I choose from day-to-day. I work a "day job" during weekdays, so both shoots and development/post-production all take place on evenings and weekends.

On the evening of a shoot, prep time is usually fairly quick -- 30-45 minutes to set up lights, change backgrounds, swap new batteries into the main flash, make sure memory cards are cleared and ready, etc. Once the model arrives, she may or may not take more prep time for her hair and makeup, and then we get right down to shooting. Most shoots last between 30 minutes and 2 hours, but have been as short as 15 minutes or as long as an entire day. Once the model leaves, I break down the lights and other equipment, and download the shots to the hard drive. Post-production usually takes several days, sometimes a week or more. I create rough JPEGs of all shots in Adobe Lightroom and select the shots I will finish from those. To create the finished shots, I usually return to the RAW file and process it in Photoshop. Photomatic Pro has also just entered my workflow in the last few weeks when a bit of HDR is called for. Finished shots are uploaded to my flickr account (except when prohibited by the client) and sent to the client. The best shots are also uploaded to my Facebook, MySpace and Model Mayhem accounts, and added to my professional website's online portfolio at my own domain.

What are the most interesting aspects of your job?

Developing my "eye" is very interesting, and I'm always fascinated by anything that shows me that I see the world differently.

And although it's cliché, the people are definitely the most interesting. When I went from photographing alleys and plants to photographing people, I was a very asocial person -- introverted and a bit hermit-like. I'm still mostly like that, but photographing people has forced me to become more social that I ever dreamed I would be. I've made some wonderful contacts and even real friends through this work, and have learned how to "come out of my shell."

What part of your work do you consider dull or repetitious?

While shooting is always exciting and fascinating (I often break into a sweat and get an adrenaline rush), developing and post-production can be mind-numbing sometimes. When I was a little kid my father taught me how to develop black and white film and then make prints from the negatives. Seeing an image "bloom" under the red safelight never lost its magic, but my workflow is entirely digital now and digital developing doesn't have the same excitement and magic. It's made up for by the incredible control and precision we have when working digitally. But the sense of "magic" you get from seeing the image materialize in the chemical tray isn't there.

What percentage of your time must you devote to this activity?

I'm not full-time professional yet -- I still work a day job -- so the percentage is nowhere near what I hope it will eventually be. I'm also devoted to my girlfriend, so I keep plenty of time for "us." It's very easy to get on the computer and spend an entire evening working on images, but I try not to let it take over too much of what spare time I have. It's hard to guess what percentage I spend, but it's currently rather small, as I set photography on the back burner for the last few months and am only just now starting to arrange some new shoots and get things moving again. Late last year, when I was shooting more normally and regularly, I was probably spending 25% of my time on photography, which is a great deal considering that about 45% of my time is already spent on my day-job and commuting. During the last few months I've spent less than 10% of my time on photography. That will be changing quickly.

What specific field do you work in?

Commercial fashion and high fashion, and editorial/art photography.

Are there any specific courses a student might take that would be particularly beneficial in this field?

I never had formal training -- I learned from my father when I was a kid, and then learned the rest on my own. However I can say that while I neglected photography during my school & college years, I was a very prolific and passionate art student. I did tons of drawings with pencil, ink, colored pencils, airbrush and other media, and worked as a newspaper illustrator and cartoonist in the early 1990s. All those years of art trained my eye and taught me composition, use of tone, subject selection, and other basic skills. When I got back into photography in the early 2000s, those skills were already well developed. The basic skills of art are the same for all the visual arts.

What entry level jobs qualify one for this field?

I work as an independent photographer, but if you want to get hired for a photography job you can start out by serving as an assistant for another working photographer. Get to know the local photographers who shoot weddings, and let them know you would like to be their assistant for a shoot. You'll probably wind up doing very simple jobs like carrying equipment, holding reflectors and baffles, or herding bridesmaids, but once you assist at just one shoot, you've got resumé fodder and you've got your foot in the door.

What aspects of a career in this field do you consider particularly good? Particularly bad?

Photography is a very rewarding creative outlet and you get to meet and work with fantastic people. The feedback you get on your work can be fantastic. And for an independent photographer, it's just amazing when you get an email completely out of the blue from somebody you've never heard of who wants to license a photo for an ad campaign, annual report or brochure.

On the downside, photography is not a steady field. If you shoot weddings and high school portraits, you'll have some busy spells and long stretches of nothing -- and the thin wallet that comes with those times; the business is a constant toggle between boom and bust. If you work for a studio as an employed photographer, the threat of layoffs and downsizing is always a possibility. If you shoot stock photography, well, stock is an incredibly bloated market so it's extremely hard to make a living in that field. And if you're a photojournalist, the work might be steady, but newspapers are currently in a long, continuing slump that has been happening for years and will certainly continue. Photojournalists also have to fear downsizing, plus the hard fact that the newspaper market is in a long contraction. Photography is a hard business, and is not stable, reliable work.

What special advice would you give to a young person entering this field?

Shoot a lot (always in RAW mode!) and save all of it. Your morgue file is valuable; you never knew when you might be able to sell a shot you took years ago. Don't expect fame and glory; do the work because you are passionately driven to do it, not because you think it will make you wealthy. And always shoot photos that are pleasing to yourself; if you are shooting to please others and not yourself, it will show through. Be authentic, and don't take pictures that you don't love.

What inspires you to do photography?

The need for a creative outlet.

When I was 8 years old (1977) I discovered that I could draw better than most kids, and I focused my creative energy on drawing from then until the mid-1990s. I worked for a while as a newspaper illustrator and cartoonist. In the mid-90s, my physical energy was starting to sag. I also realized around that time that although I was good enough at drawing to impress most people, I wasn't good enough to have the kind of career in drawing that I wanted -- an illustrator or professional cartoonist. But more pressing, I just didn't have the physical energy that it takes to keep drawing at the prolific rate I always had. I more or less gave up drawing in the mid-90s, and didn't have any creative outlet for years. In the early 2000s I got my first digital camera, and rediscovered photography. At first I just took the type of personal "life-documenting" snapshots that everybody takes. Gradually realized that the fact that I no longer had to pay for film and wasn't limited to rolls of 12, 24 or 36 shots meant I was liberated to experiment without feeling like I was wasting anything; I could literally afford to waste shots. So I began paying attention to composition, tones, visual texture and so on. In the fall of 2004 I discovered the website flickr.com, which was at that time a small startup website operating out of Vancouver, B.C. I posted a batch of photos on flickr at the end of October, and started receiving feedback. I just plunged headfirst into serious photography at that point, and photography replaced drawing as my creative outlet.

I always needed a creative outlet like a boiling pot with a lid needs a steam vent. I don't know how I survived the years after I stopped drawing and before I rediscovered photography!

Photography is not something I want to do -- now it's something I have to do.

What is your favorite subject to shoot? I know this chances from time to time, but what is it right now?

I mostly work with models. I used to shoot a lot of subjects and would swing through various interests in phases, but once you find your specialty -- the thing that you really excel at -- the other subjects naturally fall to the back burner and become "hobby subjects" while your specialty becomes the center of your serious efforts.

A have a lot of really fantastic models. Ruby Hardt is one; she's an alternative fashion model who focuses on rockabilly styled clothing and has a brilliant smile like a spotlight. "Miss Cat" is another; it's a shame she isn't pursuing modeling more seriously, as she's a classic mainstream beauty and the camera loves her. But my "primo" model -- my most perfect creative collaborator -- is Bridgette Colette; she always brings a whole list of fantastic ideas to every shoot, and nails each and every one of them easily and beautifully. We also seem to work together on a near telepathic level, as she does what I'm about to ask just before I say it.

How do you decide which shot to use out of the entire selection from a photo shoot?

It can be a big task, since I typically shoot hundreds of photos in a session. First I create what I call JPEG "rough mixes" from the RAW files in Adobe Lightroom. Then I open all the shots from a particular pose or scene in Preview (the standard image viewing application on the Macintosh) and start flipping through them. I'll select the best shots that way. Often I'll narrow it down to two or three shots, and then just flip back and forth between those shots until I start seeing little imperfections in one of the shots. Once I choose the shot I want to finish, I usually label it (under File > Label on the Mac). I often choose the shots I'll finish, and then start processing the selections, so labeling helps me remember which ones were best.

How do you know when a piece is finished?

I wish there was a simple answer I could explain, but when you're working on a photo, there is a certain feeling you get when it's finished. It's a feeling of satisfaction and completion; if you have ever done a jigsaw puzzle, then it's the same feeling you get when you put the last piece in and step back and look at the finished puzzle. You have to learn to pay attention to that feeling. Don't stop working on the photo until it "clicks" as finished, but also don't keep working on it once you get that feeling.

Describe what you think your style is.

Much of my commercial photography can be summed up fairly in the word "clean." There are a lot of qualities I try to put into my photos, but at least regarding the commercial work, the word "clean" sums up a trait my work has that makes it stand apart from most others.

On the other hand, my art photography is often dirty, gritty, visually a bit messy -- multiple textures stacked up with different lighting modes, one ore more vignettes, and often even a layer of dust that I scanned from some old mistreated negatives I took when I was a kid. I can spend hours essentially destroying a photo with grit, grime and garbage -- but destroying it in a way that I think and hope makes it uniquely beautiful and compelling. I can understand the pictoralists like Anne Brigman who poured chemicals on their finished prints and then smeared and scratched them with their hands to make them look like paintings. In art you sometimes are at your most creative when you appear to be "destroying" your work.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

My first photography interview, now on Facebook, with photos! http://ping.fm/RUKPA

The first interview of Dave Ward Photography

My photographer friend Alisha has to interview a few photographers as part of her photography courses, and she asked me to be an interview subject. I accepted, so here is the first interview of Dave Ward Photography. 1. Do you have any formal training? No, but I'm not untrained. When I was about 8 years old my father, who had been doing photography since the late 1950s, took me into his darkroom and taught me how to develop b&w film and then make prints from the negatives. I learned the joys of Dektol D-76 and watching the image appear under the red light, and I learned the not-as-joyful experience of winding exposed film into the developing wheel in pitch black darkness. My eye for photography was developed during years and years of art training in school. I never took photography very seriously when I was younger, and instead did a lot of drawing, eventually becoming a newspaper illustrator in the early-90s. The art classes in high school and college taught me how to "see" a good image, and how to work with composition, tones, etc. The principals of visual art are the same in all fields, so when I got back into photography in the early-2000s (and finially took it seriously) those skills were already in place. 2. What part of your job do you consider dull or repetitious? Shooting is never boring. But processing photos (I work all-digital now) can be very tiresome. While it's exciting watching the image "bloom" in the chemical dray in a dark room, it's usually not as exciting tweaking every setting while developing RAW into 16-bit Photoshop files, or while doing tone mapping for HDR work. The developing & post-production phases in digital photography are far more controlled and precise than in analog (film) photography, but the gain in control is balanced by the fact that it's less exciting and less "magical." 3. What would you say is the most important step in developing or refreshing your creative thinking? First: Right from the start, learn how to be inspired and excited. In my experience, developing your "eye" makes this easy. Once you learn to see the beauty that others walk right past and take for granted, you'll find inspiration and creative stimuli everywhere. I remember walking through Whatcom Falls Park with somebody and being stunned by the leaves overhead; the sun was shining above, so looking up at the leaves you saw this luminous green glow coming through them. It was just stunningly beautiful. I tried to show the other person, but the response was completely blasé. I felt a little sad realizing that most people don't have a developed eye and can't see everyday beauty like that. Second: In the book Shambhala Chögyam Trungpa writes about a phenomenon called "the coccoon." People like to stay in the places, pattern and mindsets they are familiar with. The familiar feels safe, so we surround ourself with familiar, comfortable things, creating a "coccoon" that we feel safe in. It feels cozy, so it's easy to think of it as a good, nice thing. But you have to break out of the coccoon if you want to be a mature and beautiful butterfly. Trungpa was writing about personal psychological growth, but this applies perfectly to creativity as well. You have to deliberately CHOOSE to get out of your little ruts in life, whether it's going grocery shopping somewhere you don't usually go, cooking a new recipe you haven't tried, or simply taking a different route to work. Next time you're driving or walking and pass a street, ask yourself "Have I ever been down that street?" and if you haven't, turn down it. Even the tiniest little adventure can refresh your thinking and recharge your creative batteries. 4. What does Photography mean to you? Whether it's drawing or music or photography or writing, I approach all arts authentically: I create for myself, and hope that it will also appeal to others. So photography is my expressive and creative outlet, even when I'm doing simple commercial shots. When I was in school, drawing -- pencil, pen and ink, Prismacolor pencils, even airbrush -- was my creative outlet. I also was writing and recording music a lot at the time as a second outlet. But in the early 90s my energy started declining, and drawing became to much work and too time-consuming. The music, too, went on the back-burner. I gave up drawing in the mid-90s, and only occasionally draw since then. For years in the late-90s I had no creative outlet. I became very frustrated for years. Then in the early 2000s I got my first digital camera. For the first few years I just took personal "life documenting" photos like everybody else. But in 2003 I started paying more attention to composition and treating photography more like an art, and I started expressing myself creatively with photos. In the fall of 2004 I found the upstart website flickr.com and quickly got deeply involved in the photography community there. That was when I truly started pursuing photography. The creative outlet I had once had in drawing was finally replaced. 5. What are the biggest professional challenges you face? I have full-blown Attention Deficit Disorder, which is a lot more serious and challenging than most people can imagine. My own self-confidence is also not especially strong. So I'm practically crippled in terms of both self-promotion/advertising, and in terms of the business acumen which is absolutely necessary for a successful career as an independent photographer. I the last year I have come to realize and accept that I will be a failure in photography (at least in terms of a career) unless and until I find a business partner who will do the promotion and handle the business aspect -- organizing and planning, tracking expenses, etc. 6. How do you go about promoting your work? As I mentioned, I'm practically incapable of real self-promotion. I'm too terrified to submit my art for inclusion in a show or display in any gallery -- or even in a coffee shop. Instead I post all of my finished photos online on flickr.com, and also cross-post the best ones under my facebook and myspace accounts. I do have a website, daveward.net, and recently redesigned the entire site. I do have business cards, and the footer of all my emails and online communications includes the name "Dave Ward Photography" and the address of my web page. Unfortunately, that is the extent of my self-promotion. I'm good at creating promotional materials -- my "day job" is graphic design, and I have a background in advertising design specifically -- but I'm just not able to work up the confidence to promote my own work. 7. What has been your greatest accomplishment with your work? There are two measures of accomplishment or success in arts: commercial/professional accomplishment, and artistic accomplishment. Artistically, my greatest accomplishments are my "Apothecary Women" series which depict women holding old pharmacy bottles with the photos processed to appear very old and worn, and a few high-fashion shots I've done in the last couple years. My greatest professional accomplishments are the twenty-something photos I have licensed to the Washington State tourism campaign, and a license I sold last year to use one of my photos to advertise heating pumps in Denmark and Europe. 8. Who are your influences? My two single biggest influences are the photo-secessionist member, Anne Brigman -- the greatest of the pictoralists, in my opinion -- and a brilliant photographer-friend of mine in Australia named Kate O'Brien. Brigman's photos are very painterly fine-art. Kate's work is surreal, witty, gorgeous and absolutely unique. I've also been influenced by Art Nouveau poster master Alphonse Mucha and 60s pop artist Roy Lichtenstein. I also have to mention a brilliant Danish photographer Lasse Hoile, whose melancholy, moody style is also very inspiring and influential to me. 9. What was your funniest, scariest, most bizarre, or most touching story from a photo shoot? The model I have the best working relationship with is Bridgette Colette. Our creative sense and our artistic goals just line up perfectly, and we work together almost telepathically when shooting. She lived in Marysville, which is a full hour from my studio in Bellingham. In November 2008 we did our first shoot. I drove to Marysville to pick her up, drove us back to Bellingham to do the shoot, and when it was over I drove her back home and then finally drove myself back home. Four hours on the road just for the benefit of shooting with her -- but it was VERY much worth it. A month later I was planning a Christmas shoot and had a model lined up, but that model got very sick just a few days before the shoot. Bridgette agreed to step in for the shoot, and also pitched several other ideas, so we set up a big shoot only a few days before Christmas. The day of the shoot, it snowed. I drove to Marysville, finding the roads icy and dangerous. It was nasty, but I *had* to do this shoot with this fantastic model. The drive with her back to my studio was a little more challenging; snow was falling hard, and the roads were getting worse and worse. We shot in the studio for several hours, and got in the car to drive her back home around 8:30pm. Now it was dark, and the roads were horrible. The one-hour drive to Marysville stretched into nearly two hours, but Bridgette and I talked the entire way there, making it enjoyable despite the nasty conditions. Once I dropped her off, I headed back north to Bellingham. That drive was a whole different affair. A new snowstorm was hitting hard, and now the lanes were completely covered, and much more slippery. Worse, there was a lot of blowing snow. For several miles north of Burlington, I was stuck in a genuine whiteout. All I could see was thick, swirling whiteness at the hood of my car. I could not see the ground, nor even the headlight beams. The only thing guiding me for a while was two little red dots — the taillights of the car in front of me. I just hoped that they knew what they were doing and steered to keep those red dots in front of me. It was all I could do. I couldn't pull over and stop because I couldn't even tell where the edge of the road was. It was the most intense, stressful, exhausting drive I've ever done. But to shoot with Bridgette, it was absolutely, unquestionably worth it! 10. What other thoughts would you like to share? Don't get so caught up in being "artistic" that you lose sight of commercial value in your work. And conversely, don't get so caught up in being "marketable" that you start making your photography in order to please other people. It's a balancing act. Also, shoot in RAW mode, keep every original RAW image on a hard drive (a RAW "morgue file"), use a gray card (!!!), and pay attention to the tonal dynamics in the photos -- too many photographers have flat images because they don't pay attention to the full range of brights and darks. And finally, please, for the love of God, don't get caught up in photo fads like the current one with tastelessly exaggerated HDR effects.

Friday, May 15, 2009

We took turns chucking puppy in the bay so he could swim out. Eventually he'll lose his water anxiety. Beautiful evening.
Off work at 5:30. Thinking of taking girl and pooch to the bay and chucking one of them in the water. Probably the pooch. I <3 them both.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Swine flu will make your head explode like in that movie "Scanners"

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Stayed overnight at the cabin in woods, went up Mt. Baker this afternoon, now back home to make baked potatoes. Beautiful weekend!

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Going out to the cabin by Mount Baker for the weekend! It will be the closest I've been to a day of vacation in about three years.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Do you know anybody who needs some professional or personal photography work? I need work--don't even have cash for food or bills. HELP?

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Crisis time! Suddenly I have no money to get food or pay bills for two weeks. Do you want some photos done? Know anybody who does? HELP!

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Annoyed with stupid assholes who tell lies in desperate attempts to cause trouble. May they choke in their sleep.

Monday, May 04, 2009

May the fourth be with you! #starwarsday
Exhausted. I did not get a weekend. Not at all. Desperately need to relax, but no--back to work starting today. I'll be a wreck all week.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

I'm a grown-up; I use Facebook.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Photographers -- check out the HDR Manifesto http://ping.fm/ufbXn

The HDR Manifesto

<a title="The HDR Manifesto, by daveward" href="<a href="http://ping.fm/L5x8l"><img">http://ping.fm/L5x8l"><img</a> src="<a href="http://ping.fm/iyPPM"">http://ping.fm/iyPPM"</a> width="500" height="375"></a> <b>----- The HDR Manifesto -----</b> High Dynamic Response (HDR) photography has become a widespread phenomenon lately. But two things have gotten lost in this hot new photo fad: the purpose of HDR, and the taste and restraint that come naturally to mature artists. The camera lens can never really equal the human eye. When we look at something directly in front of us, our eye adjusts depending on what we are looking at, allowing us to see details in the dark shadows as well as in the bright highlights. But cameras capture a static image, meaning details in the darkest or lightest areas have to be sacrificed. The intent of HDR processing is to reveal the details in darkness and bright spots which our eye will see in reality, but which the camera can not capture by traditional methods. Tasteful, restrained use of HDR gives photos depth, detail, and intensity. But now you seldom see a restrained use of HDR because it has become fashionable to apply intense, exaggerated HDR to photographs. The "coolness" of the exaggerated HDR effect is often serving to obscure lousy photography. You don't have to browse for long before you'll find photos with intense HDR that get a lot of praise, but which, without the HDR effect to make it look "awesome", would be a technically very poor image. Many viewers are willing to overlook things like poor composition and lack of imagination if there's an exaggerated HDR effect slathered thickly over it to tart it up, like far too much makeup on a fundamentally unattractive girl. Occasionally an exaggerated, intense HDR effect can be nice. In the case of this car photo I think it works. (And make no mistake -- the above photo is an exaggerated HDR effect, not restrained.) But in general, I intend to usually apply HDR only in tasteful, restrained moderation, with the original purpose of HDR in mind. Exaggerated HDR is the "Magic Eye" of the late-00's. It's the new pet rock, the new Macarena, the new Furby. And hopefully it will go away as quickly as they did, leaving the use of HDR safely in the hands of those with better artistic sense.

Friday, May 01, 2009

Having an exotic dinner -- poulet frite au Kentucky. Yum!
Had to leave puppy home alone when I went to work. I hate doing that. Poor li'l guy. :-(

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

over-freaking-whelmingly tired, stressed out, burned out. Need to relax, and have no idea how. Plus I lack the will to relax, honestly.
Arlen Specter WTF? =8-O Arlen Specter FTW! :-D
Saw Toilet.... I mean Twilight. ;-) It wasn't bad. I can understand why so many girls love it (but also why guys generally aren't).

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

So full of fish and fries and strawberry lemonade...
It feels like this work-week has gone on for days, and yet it's only started. Ugh. So tired and stressed.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Made epic trip across the North Cascades Sat., walked the beach at Birch Bay on Sun., but now our colds have caught up with us. *sneeze!*

Saturday, April 25, 2009

The highway 20 pass through the North Cascades opened Friday! We're planning a trip across in the morning. Can't wait! Will take photos.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

About 8:10 I got word that a gas station was working in Mount Vernon. Drove back and gassed up. I just got home, finally.
Sadly, people are *not* helping each other in this emergency. This is disturbing.
Been sitting at gas station waiting for power so i can get some gas and drive home.
Stuck in a massive regional power outage for 2 hours. 30 miles from home, out of gas, stranded.
WTF? Now http://ping.fm/p5zFq is using my copyrighted photo without permission. The same photo keeps getting stolen!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Verizon Wireless gave HORRIBLE customer service and is screwing me, charging for services never delivered. NIGHTMARE. Blog coming soon...

Monday, April 20, 2009

wow, I have turned into such a degrassi junkie!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Poetry Month

April is poetry month, so here is one of my favorite poems. This is from the under-recognized (yet widely studied) great Theodore Roethke: Moss-Gathering (1944) To loosen with all ten fingers held wide and limber And lift up a patch, dark green, the kind for lining cemetery baskets, Thick and cushiony, like an old-fashioned doormat, The crumbling small hollow sticks on the underside mixed with roots, And wintergreen berries and leaves still stuck to the top,- That was moss-gathering. But something always went out of me when I dug those loose carpets Of green, or plunged my elbows in the spongy yellowish moss of the marshes: And afterwards I always felt mean, jogging back over the logging road, As if I had broken the natural order of things in that swampland; Disturbed some rhythm, old and of vast importance, By pulling off flesh from the living planet; As if I had committed, against the whole scheme of life, a desecration.

Poetry Month: Roethke

April is poetry month (thanks, Melody!) so I thought I would post one of my favorite poems. I might post more later, but this is from the brilliant, under-recognized poet Theodore Roethke. Moss-Gathering (1944) To loosen with all ten fingers held wide and limber And lift up a patch, dark green, the kind for lining cemetery baskets, Thick and cushiony, like an old-fashioned doormat, The crumbling small hollow sticks on the underside mixed with roots, And wintergreen berries and leaves still stuck to the top,- That was moss-gathering. But something always went out of me when I dug those loose carpets Of green, or plunged my elbows in the spongy yellowish moss of the marshes: And afterwards I always felt mean, jogging back over the logging road, As if I had broken the natural order of things in that swampland; Disturbed some rhythm, old and of vast importance, By pulling off flesh from the living planet; As if I had committed, against the whole scheme of life, a desecration.
This breakfast in bed routine could spoil me. What did I do right to deserve this girl?!
Teabag protests? No, more like douchebag protests.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Did you notice the "tea" protesters today? Then you should watch this! http://ping.fm/IWTbU
AAARGH! Totally forgot to do my taxes. Anybody know if Bellingham post offices are open late? I won't even be back in town until 6:30pm!
Just reactivated my old phone. The phone number everybody has for me is working again, after being inactive for about 6 weeks.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Great: being surprised with breakfast in bed this morning. Wow. Lousy: I really seriously need caffeine right now. Seriously badly.

Monday, April 13, 2009

I'm just not impressed by photographers who are self-consciously hip. Art is about honest expression, not "Everybody look how cool I am."

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Did an art-nude & pinup shoot Thursday. First photo up! (NSFW -- you've been warned) http://ping.fm/hJPTy

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Not getting NEARLY enough sleep lately. Ughh...

Friday, March 13, 2009

Hey, serious photographer friends! Ever used Portrait Professional? What did you think? http://ping.fm/H2axH

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Car is fixed, brakes working beautifully. Karrin is by my side, hearts pumping wildly. <3

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Ugh. This is miserable. I just want my car fixed and Special K in my arms.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

My no-brakes car is in the shop. I'm anxiously waiting to hear back. And Karrin is recovering well from surgery. I can't wait to see her!
HELP! No brakes at all on my car. Broken rear cylinder leaks all fluid out. Anyone know a B'ham mechanic who can come HERE to fix it? HELP!

Monday, March 09, 2009

Karrin is in surgery, and I'm snowed in -- couldn't get to work. Ugh. I hope she's doing well. Waiting to hear from her, maybe not till tonight.
Karrin has her heart surgery today. I'm freaked, even though I had exactlu the same surgery. Waiting to hear from her...

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Giving the little white doggie a bath.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

I'm missing Karrin like crazy, but taking Moxxie out for a big day together!

Friday, March 06, 2009

Help! I can't put my new Pocket PC down. It is freaking awesome fun! So THIS is why people get addicted to smart phones!
Sad that Karrin will be away for a couple days, but happy to have Moxxie while she's gone, and excited about the new phone

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

NOT looking forward to the weekend. Karrin will be gone, then she has her surgery Mon. Might not see her til late next week. Really upset...
NOT lonking forward to the weekend. Karrin will be gone, then she has her surgery Mon. Might not see her til late next week. Really upset...

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Don't Be A Sucker

From a very concise little article about astrology: Five thoughts: 1) Distances. As anyone who has taken introductory physics should know, the force of gravity goes with the inverse square of the distance... ie., the further a body is from you, the less it will affect you. Remember how far away Earth is from the Sun, Moon, and planets (hint: MILLIONS of miles). Though the person who delivered you at birth may be much less massive than any celestial body, they are much closer and would certainly affect you more than the positions of the planets. 2) Other influences. For argument’s sake, let’s say that there is some unknown force that far-away celestial bodies do exert. The laws of physics have yet to be completely understood, so I’ll concede that it may be possible that there is something that works independently of distance and might influence the lives of people. But if that force is not distance dependent, why aren’t stars, galaxies, quasars, or black holes included in astrological forecasts? 3) Uranus, Neptune and Pluto. The three outermost planets were only discovered within the past three centuries. How does that work with the claim that astrologers make about the accuracy of their art for previous times? 4) Precession of the Earth. Due to the slight wobbling of the Earth’s axis, the current position of objects in the zodiac circle are no longer consistent with the tenets of astrology set up thousands of years ago. Your "sun sign" is actually currently shifted over by one (i.e., a Leo is really a Cancer). 5) Build me a house of ham. If you’ve thought about the human reproductive process, you know that a baby spends about 9 months gestating in the mother’s womb before it is born. Why, then, does your birth time matter? Shouldn’t it really be the time of conception that would affect who the baby is to become? Or is it that the muscular lining of the mother protects the fetus from all external forces? In that case, shouldn’t a ham enclosure do the trick? The full article is found at http://ping.fm/XfLPi

Friday, February 27, 2009

Saw "Slumdog Millionaire." It was fantastic! I highly recommend it to all. #oscars

Thursday, February 26, 2009

All this snow does not bode well for my ability to get to work tomorrow. Hmm...

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Tired, very sore, and both depressed and upset (though not for any reason I can discern). Just clinical depression probably.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Did a great shoot with Anne today, followed by a trip to Birch Bay & Semiahmoo beaches with Karrin & Moxxie. Making cobbler now. Yum!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Stressed, tired. I need this week to be over. I need a weekend, for my sanity. At least there are Karrin & the pooch! <3

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Read "A Small Paper, A Big Dream and a Bigger Crash" at http://ping.fm/ASWXs

A small paper, a big dream and a bigger crash.

Back in 1992 I was hired out of college (actually left college to take the offered job) to become the graphics editor at a small newspaper. It was a local paper serving an oceanside community which was half fishing-town, half wealthy summer-home resort. Several of us who had run the college paper pretty much on our own (very little guidance from the teacher) were offered jobs at this paper which promised to grow into a county-wide newspaper. Our little newspaper had previously served the tiny community for decades, but had gone out of business. It had been bought by a thirty-something woman who had a small inheritance. Her dream was to run a newspaper, but she had no knowledge whatsoever of the industry. She made herself publisher, and then hired us to make it happen. We took it seriously. Collectively, with our heads and experience put together, we had the knowhow to run a serious newspaper that could take on the longstanding paper which had a monopoly on the county's newspaper market for generations. We busted our asses. I remember many times working overnight. Sometimes I was the only one there, and would take a brief break at 2 a.m. to walk alone across the street to look at the pitch-black Pacific Ocean from the empty, dead-silent beach. Eerily beautiful. We worked to transition the paper away from fluffy small-town news and turn it into a serious newspaper that would do serious local journalism. One early clash -- and a sign of things to come -- happened when we put a story about a fatal automobile accident on the front page, albeit below the fold. The woman who owned the paper called us to a lunch meeting. "That story was a real downer," she said, "I don't think people want to see stuff like that when they get their paper in the morning." She urged us to find happy, positive stories to run in the paper. Daryll (the Editor in Chief and a good friend of mine) planted his face in his palm with an audible groan, and the rest of us just shook our heads in disbelief. Still we plugged away at it, working far more than eight hours a day because we believed in it and wanted it to happen. We were filled with passion and dedication and belief. The business decisions were abysmal, however. The owner kept throwing lunch-parties. At first it was "Hell yeah! Fancy hamburgers and fresh fish -- count me in!" But after about three of these lunches, all of us were starting to worry. We couldn't see all the figures, but we all knew the paper was only just starting out, and was not yet making a profit. She hired an experienced local businessman to make some hard business decisions in order to "turn things around." He came in, worked with us all for a few weeks to see how everything operates, and then he made recommendations on sweeping changes. He then left, and all of the recommendations were summarily ignored. Then she found new talent for the newspaper in a way that could save money: unpaid interns. A couple of local high school students were brought in to intern, being given course credits in exchange for office work. Nothing like student slave labor. One day the owner started calling us up to her office for important one-on-one talks. Word got out quickly that she was asking us all to take 50% pay cuts. Since I wasn't one of the first to be called in for the talk, I had the chance to do some quick math: I took the value of my last pay check (I was paid a flat salary) and then divided it by the number of hours I had actually worked. When it was my turn, I listened to her make her statement about the need for pay cuts, then I said, "I have something to show you." I repeated the math I had done. "This is the size of my salary... and this is how many hours I worked in the last month. Divide one into the other, and here's what we get..." Then I asked her, "Do you know what the minimum wage is in Washington State?" Yes, I was making less than minimum wage. I did not get my pay cut. Things got more and more tense. We knew very well how to run a successful newspaper, and various staff members kept urging -- sometimes begging -- the owner to make various essential changes. One day she and Daryl disappeared for the afternoon, leaving the rest of us buzzing with concern. Daryl returned that evening and told the rest of us that he had laid it all out to her, telling her all the changes that needed to be made if the paper was going to remain afloat. He urged her to let us, the people with newspaper experience, make the decisions and do what we have to do to make the paper a success. Do I even need to say that she flatly ignored all pleas, including Daryl's? To the woman who had bought the newspaper, it was just her way of living out her fantasy of owning a newspaper, and nobody else was going to tell her how to do any of it. After Daryl confronted her and she made it clear that nothing was going to change, the members of the original team started jumping ship. It was a classic, definitive example of rats leaving the sinking ship. I'm a loyalist, sometimes to the point of stupidity; I was the last one of the original group of talent to leave. I trained a few kids she hired to replace us, and then left at the very end of 1992. The paper continued to publish my comic strips for a few weeks in early 1993, but then the checks for the strips stopped showing up, so I put an end to that as well. In spring 1993 I noticed that the paper's vending machines were empty, and new issues stopped turning up. I dropped a line to one of my old friends and found out what had happened. The brilliant new team running the paper had done an April Fool's Day edition. The front page of the paper contained fictional stories about a major earthquake devastating the area. But the real damage was the back page of the paper: a fake ad for the local supermarket containing coupons with the decimal places all moved one place to the right, so instead of 50 cents off various items it offered $5 off, etc. The ensuing lawsuit shut the newspaper down. This is what happens when somebody gets more money than they have basic common sense, and don't know when to leave things to the people with the expertise and the experience. Should anybody reading this ever start your own business, I hope you'll have the acumen to hire people who know how to succeed in that business, but also the wisdom to step back and let THEM run the show.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Hrm. Shouldn't "The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog" have a comma in it?
In love, emotional, exhausted, stressed out. Going to bed. I think I need a week off for my sanity, but no way is that going to happen. Ugh.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day! I love you madly and absolutely, Karrin!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

I love her so much I don't even know how to properly express it for Valentine's Day. Need to come up with a creative, expressive idea! Ugh
For design geeks: branding is not a science http://ping.fm/5MBW2 Man, I love stuff like that.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The effects of the economy on logos -- LULZ! http://ping.fm/foDC0
Working, looking forward to shooting with Caitlin tonight and then seeing my girl!

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Wow! The most AWESOME Obama soundclips ever! http://ping.fm/cTLDf

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Karrin's surgery got postponed for about a week. Yikes. This means we get to be together for our one-monthiversary on Friday!
Karrin goes into surgery at 8 a.m. for the same procedure I underwent a few years ago to fix the same heart defect I had. I'm so anxious...