Appointmentless

Appointmentless

In not sure if appointmentless is a word, but that’s how I am today.  No appointments.  I have time to work on this router problem and Route 66 photos.

Okay, forget about the router problems.  I want to concentrate on Route 66 stuff.  Check out the website.  I got lots done today.  http://www.route66photographers.com.

Rain

It is pouring today.  It is a good day for rain.  All my work is inside.

Taking advantage of this rainy day, I am kicking out Route 66 posts and photos like crazy.  I am also e-mailing various contacts about Route 66.  Some are business owners, others friends.  As a result, I’m getting lots done.

Because I am working on Route 66 stuff I am glad I blogged as we went.  I am already forgetting places and people.  It is good I have my blog to fall back on.

copyright 2017 db walton
Sunset On Route 66

In contrast, I fell behind on this blog because of router problems. Beckwithmansion.com is the website my router won’t allow access to via http.  Without that access I cannot update this blog.  (I am only doing it now because I have reinstalled the old router.  This is only a temporary fix.)

Template Errors

I also stopped using the iRibbon WordPress Template from CyberChimps.  It is generating errors.  When it rains, it pours.

 

 

Calibrating

Calibrating

At today’s CSM Photographer’s meeting I trained them about calibrating their monitors.  Not all monitors display equally… but the ones that area calibrated do!  That’s what I did today.  (I also do mentoring as part of my photography by db walton llc business.  Click on the link and it will take you to read more about mentoring.)

I spent the entire morning putting together my power point presentation for the training.  I found it is really difficult to get pictures when you’re calibrating because screen captures don’t really show what’s going on.

After the meeting was over I attempted to take a nap.  Wouldn’t you know it the phone kept ringing.  Ugh.  90 minutes laying there and just as my eyelids were feeling heavy, the phone would ring.

I finally got up and decided I might as well get ready to go to the temple because I wasn’t going to get any rest.  (Next time I’ll turn my phone off so the calls go to voice mail.)

We had a busy, but always wonderful, night at the temple. We managed to get some of our family names done.  We’re working on my Green line.

Philly Temple

I see the Philly Temple is now accepting reservations for the open house.  It calls around the time my girls will be visiting.  I really want to go, but we’ll have to see how we can fit it in.

copyright 2015 db walton
Philadelphia Temple

First Monday Flowers

First Monday Flowers

Today is the First Monday Event and 4 friends came over where we stat around and photographed flowers.  This was more of an exercise in doing time exposures with flashlights, but flowers make a great subject.

copyright 2015 db walton
Rose Lit by LEDs
copyright 2015 db walton
Rose Straight-on

The nice things about photographing flowers inside are 1) you don’t have to contend with the wind.  Even the slightest breeze will interfere with your picture, and 2) you can photograph from the comfort of a chair.  No fussing around with trying to get to the right height to shoot the flower.

So, it was a successful First Monday.  I’m enjoying the results of my flower pictures.

Elizabethe and I talked to a lady from Children Awaiting Parents.  They are looking for photographers to voluntarily photograph the children.  This goes right along with an idea I’ve had about starting a non-profit organization that would coordinate with photographers and adoption agencies to provide high quality portraits for the orphans’ file.  While it would be quite an undertaking, it would be a worthy cause.

The lady took us around their office and showed pictures other photographers have done.  She went down the list of the photographers they’ve used, and I didn’t recognize a single one of them.  That aside, I think I can help promote the idea and get some high-quality photographers involved.

A Shoot and More

A Shoot and More

Today I had a shoot and more.  It’s the more that keeps us photographers busy.

When it rains, it pours as they say.  All of a sudden, and I mean sudden, I have a whole bunch of pictures to retouch.  While some are at the end of their retouching, I got several orders rolling in today.

Most people know I dislike the word “edit” when it comes to retouching, because “editing” does not describe the work of the retoucher.  Back in the 70s when I retouched my first photograph, it was a job requiring a loop (magnifying glass), and some sharp brushes and pencils.  Today, the same work is done on a computer using a tablet and stylus.  Editing on the other had is simple.  You look at an image and say, “That’s trash”, and then you throw it away.  That’s editing.

Around 4pm the phone rings in the studio.  It’s my granddaughter, “Grandpa, can we walk to Mark’s Pizza for dinner?”

I told her we could.

About 5 minutes later, a knock comes on my studio door.  It’s my grandson.  “Grandpa,” he asks, “can we walk to Mark’s Pizza for dinner?”

“Sure, as long as it isn’t raining,” I respond.

He looks at the sky and decides the wind is in our favor and that we’re walking.  But, it was only 4pm and not quite time for dinner.

5pm comes along and I bring my retouching to a stopping point and guess what?  It’s pouring down rain.

Jennifer drove us all to Mark’s where we enjoyed pizza while the rain came down in sheets.  After a mad dash to the car, we came home, dashed into the house, and me to my studio.

Here I am, working on retouching.  I don’t think I’ll get done tonight.

Heavy Junk

Heavy Junk

You’ve heard of heavy equipment, well this is heavy junk.  Some of it works, and some if it is just rusting away or in a state of arrested decay.

We had a First Monday Event today and we went to a guy’s property where he collects heavy equipment.  I like going there because it is a trip back in history as well as a lot of fodder to photograph.

copyright db walton 2015
Old Chevy Flatbed Truck
copyright db walton 2015
Steamrollers

Did you know “Buffalo Springfield” was named after a steamroller?

It’s time we stop, hey, what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down

copyright db walton 2015
Engine and Compressor

We had 4 people show up.  A couple of the people had never been there before and so they found a lot of pleasure in discovering this cool new place.

 

Missing the Boat

Missing the Boat

There are a lot of people who call themselves photographers who are missing the boat.  While some young folks may not understand that saying, let me spell it out:  If you’re late to the dock, don’t have the proper paperwork, and aren’t ready to board your ship, it is going to leave without you.

After my doctor’s appointment, I had a networking meeting (one of those ways these photographers miss the boat), and then it was off to speak to the Finger Lakes Professional Photographers (another missing the boat opportunity).

My presentation was about closed networking.  I got a very good post-presentation reception.  I felt I had motivated these seasoned professionals.  Of course, they are going to follow through and the young folks who are trying to figure things out well… the ship has already left.

It took me a few years of being in business to discover this opportunity for grabbing new business.  It didn’t join sooner because nobody told me about it.  However, when I tell some business owners about it… well… they just doing get it.

If you know a photographer, ask if they are a PPA member.  If they are not, suggest they get in touch with the local PPA section and join.

Learning About Your Camera

Learning About Your Camera

Learning about your camera is the best way to avoid bad photos.  One fortunate student got to learn about her camera today.  Yes, even when I have one student I hold my New Camera Class.

I teach a class a couple of times a year called, “So, You got a new camera.  Now what?”  (Visit my web site by clicking here to learn more.)  I go through all those knobs, buttons, and menus and explain what settings you want in order to get the best pictures.  I also talk about the best way to hold the camera so your pictures don’t end up with motion-blur (the most common type of blur on an auto-focus camera.)

copyright 2015 db walton
A Selfie Done Right

It’s a 3 hour class and after the class I went to work on checking e-mail and all of that stuff I have to do on a daily basis.  I get bombarded with e-mails.  It’s my own darn fault.  I’m on the board for the Chamber of Commerce.  I’m on the board for Finger Lakes Professional Photographers.  I’m serving a church service mission.  I own my own photography studio.  I own a tourist home, and I could go on.  Add to that I’m married and have children and grandchildren.

Who has time to play?

Speaking of playing, I would love to do some playing with a creative type who would also like to model.   I’ve got all this lighting equipment I put together while I was laid up with my broken leg.   (Yeah, I laid there with a broken leg and ordered a bunch of stuff off eBay.  Now that I’m getting around I want to ‘play’ with this newly acquired equipment.)

I can only take so many selfies.

 

 

My Turn

My Turn

Today was my turn to have some fun.  I drove in to Rochester and took pictures at Artisan Works.  That’s fun.

Speaking of fun…

I recently heard someone say the only thing that is important in life is if you’re having fun.  My reaction, although I didn’t say this, was, “How shallow.”

“Men are that they might have joy,” as it says in the scriptures, does not mean we are here to have fun.  I define joy as inner-peace and happiness.  I define fun as being entertained.  I think there’s a difference.

It is not “fun” having someone run you down in a crosswalk.  But, one can still feel joy in knowing you have friends and family around to help and support you.

It is not “fun” having someone treat you badly or abuse you.  But, you can still feel joy in knowing it isn’t your fault and you have a loving Heavenly Father.

What I did today was “fun”.  Coming home and seeing my wife gave me “joy”.  Had I been locked inside Artisan Works and told I couldn’t leave  for a week might be “fun” for a little while, but once the fun wore off I wouldn’t be experiencing much “joy”.

So, I was out having fun for a couple of hours.  Here’s some of the results…

copyright 2015 db walton
Painter’s Brush Jars

There were several photographers there.  A guy in Rochester posted it as a Meetup Group activity.  Plus, we saved $6 off the admission price.  That made for a nice surprise too.

copyright 2015 db walton
Mermaid

D. Brent Walton, author of this blog, is a Certified Professional Photographer and Photographic Craftsman and owner of photography by db walton llc.  You can see his work at www.dbwalton.com and www.FineArtbyDB.com.  He also teaches workshops.  See www.palmyra-ny.com

Selecting Images

Selecting Images

Selecting Images for International Print Competition (IPC) is quite the chore.  Every year, PPA (Professional Photographers of America) hosts a huge print competition.

I anguish over the selection process.  And, for some crazy reason, time slips away from me and all of a sudden I only have a few weeks to come up with suitable images.

It would really be nice to have someone with a Master Artist eye could sit with me and say, “Yeah, that one… no, not that one… Okay, there’s a good one… oh, and that one there.”

Anyone qualified for the role?

A few years ago, I tried getting friends to help in the process.  (If you are one of them, please don’t take offense at what I’m about to say.)  The problem was they were all “yes-men”.  Everything was good.  Plus, one has to understand the process of Print Competition.

The ideal screener would understand the 12 elements of style and be able to say, “That needs this done and that done.”

Elizabethe suggested I not worry about print comp, but having a goal to shoot for gives me motivation.  Without that motivation I don’t get anything done.  I guess I’m just a goal-oriented type of person.

The weather is still cold.  I think this is the February Don McClean wrote about when he said, “February made me shiver.”

Yeah.  It’s cold.

Custom Backdrop

Custom Backdrop

What does a photographer do when he can’t shoot?  He designs a custom backdrop on his laptop.

So, here’s the deal…. a 5×7 backdrop runs around $100 for starters and who knows how many photographers end up with the same 5×7 backdrop.  I decided I would investigate and find a place that will do the 5×7, double sided, based on my designs.    I found one and bingo!  It arrived today.

This is the last part of my grab-n-go kit.  I now have all the pieces.  I’m so jazzed.

The backdrop is actually a very heavy jersey material.  It’s a lot like what quality sweat pants are made from.  Only, this is a big 5′ x 7′ blanket that on side is a traditional cloudy pattern, and the other side are grungy tiles.  While, I don’t have any portraits to show you, I can show you what the overall look is like…

 

copyright 2015 db walton
Tile Side

The above side will look cool with some splashes of light – like a bright red, blue, purple, etc.  It’s more contemporary

copyright 2015 db walton
Cloud Side

This side is more traditional.  It can have its color changed by my splashing it with blue, teal, orange (for a brown look), etc.

The funny thing is, no photography was involved in the creation of these backdrops.  Yeah, it’s all artwork done on my computer.  I’ve got about 8 more designs I want to produce.

What is more cool is that they roll up so tightly.  My grab-n-go kit easily has room for 4 of these 2 sided backdrops.