Saturday, December 31, 2005

Living room studio...

So we took down the Christmas tree and most of the decorations which just happen to free up some space for my little "studio" if you can call it that. I have wanted to try some more shots with the white material Denise had found me. I pulled out the gear and set everything up. I started shooting with Desirae, then some of Devin, and then put them together for the shot above. The backdrop was a little small so I had to keep getting Devin to lean the other way because he was pushing the framing out of the backdrop. It is going to have to take some practice to really get this down - but it was nice to get a chance to do it and both the kids really wanted to do it. Though they do get bored REALLY quickly.

I did setup another shot of Denise after the kids went to bed. She was trying to watch a television program and I asked her to sit in the makeshift studio. After doing the first segment I had a better idea of things to try and I think I captured a better image on this one. I also think I might need to re-think my "high-key" type of shots with one light - meaning I probably should stay away from the light backgrounds - it is too difficult to get the lighting right with a single light.

We also decided to go into Boron for lunch today at Domingo's Mexican Restaurant and I think that was a big mistake. The food wasn't that great, the service was bad, and overall the experience wasn't too good. We should have just went to Ramons. However, we were trying to do something different, and we did accomplish that.

Other than that is was a fairly boring day. The weather was cold, windy, and rainy so there really wasn't much to do outside so we pretty much stayed around the house - except for lunch. The big thing was taking the tree down, which was kind of a pain actually, and we watched some movies. Kind of nice and relaxing.

We are also not really into the whole New Years "thing" so we will shut down early and just watch to news in the morning to see if anything "interesting" happens. Otherwise that's pretty much it. However, Happy New Year! to you and we wish everyone a wonderful year. For us this last year with all it's ups and downs has been wonderful and I only see things getting better every year!

OBTW - I think taking the tree down was not a good idea for my back - I think I sent it into over drive and it is really tensing up. I did down the pills so I HOPE that it will take the edge off, but that was REALLY STUPID on my part. I sure hope I can MOVE in the morning!

Friday, December 30, 2005

A time to sew...

Since Deanna is starting to get a little more active and bigger Denise decided it was time to make the shopping cart "Cootie Cover" to keep Deanna safe when she is riding in a basket. She found this pattern a while ago and they were not available when Devin and Desirae were smaller. Denise hasn't been able to find time to sew so with me being off today I have been able to run a little interference with Devin and Desirae. For the most part the kids are being pretty good though.

The most interesting thing from today was the telephone call I received from Jax who was a very good friend of mine from High School. As I mentioned before we had lost touch and just recently re-reconnected. She is currently living in England going to school and working. Pretty exciting stuff and it was a real treat to get a chance to actually talk to her. We had been trying to coordinate this for the last few days but the time zones have been the real problem with that. With me being home today (more later) it was the perfect opportunity to talk. I really hope we can connect more often, but if not there is also email and blogs!

CAR SAGA - Okay, Nissan still has not finished my car because the "new" (not really new, but I don't really care) new one did not show up this week. They do have the car detailed, gassed up, and ready to go. I could go get it, but then I would have to deal with the logistics of getting the car back to them so I think I am just going to wait. As it stands right now they MIGHT get the radio in on Monday but then again they might not. So I am not sure what to do. I guess I could just get the car and take it back next weekend if they get it in. I don't know... What a pain.

Ah, speaking of pains, my back went out AGAIN and this time (yesterday) I just went to urgent care. Back (muscle) pain can really be discouraging and I figured I would just go get some REAL drugs to deal with it. They have helped and I also got my first ever doctors note to stay home, not that I really needed it. Hopefully things will get back to normal soon. I think I have been a little stressed/frustrated and that my back has taken the brunt of the pain on this.

Oh, and in case you are interested I did use the new Alien Bee AB800 to illuminate the above photograph. That is a pretty neat unit and it is going to be great getting more used to it. Hopefully if I am up to it this weekend I will take some more portraits.

I purchased a new book yesterday, Photoshop LAB Color : The Canyon Conundrum and Other Adventures in the Most Powerful Colorspace that covers an alternative way to post process your images in photoshop to bring out the color saturation in the images. I decided to play around with this and I thought the results were really impressive. So, below I have a LAB (pronounced L A B) process image and the original I posted on the blog a while ago. It is truly amazing what you can accomplish in Photoshop

Wednesday, December 28, 2005


Bob (aka Apple iMac) decided to play nice and worked for Denise today. I still am not sure what exactly happened but so far it hasn't happened again so I think we are through the woods!

I did get a nice surprise when I came home. The house smelled like abondagas (I have no idea how to spell that) soup. Denise decided to re-make the receipt that Marco (from our local mexican restaurant) gave us a while back. It was pretty good and a nice treat. I am not sure if it is something that Denise is going to continue to make, but maybe.

For some strange reason I decided to post that mouse picture on the forum - mainly for my own entertainment but I actually received a couple of comments on it, and they were both positive. I really figured I would get nothing. That was kind of interesting.
Oh, I almost forgot, I got a car update today. I did have to call and REMIND THEM that they needed to call me but at least I got a call. So as it stands now another radio is on order and should be here ANY day now and they think that it will be this week and I can get my car this weekend (maybe earlier). Also for my troubles they are going to detail and gas up the car. Since I haven't washed it in a long while and I wasn't sure there was enough gas to make it to the gas station I think that is okay. Not happy about it - but if they are going to make it right I guess that is a good thing.

Okay, I think I mentioned something about looking at new trucks (again). I THINK we have decided to probably/maybe not do it right now. The truck we were looking at was REALLY nice but also REALLY expensive. I did do the thing (thanks Kris) to check the price and even though I couldn't "build" the truck that we were looking at (I don't know what the deal is there) but it looked like the price they were going to sell it to me for was right in line with that.

Oh, you may have also noticed the addition of Jax's Blog on my "Friend's Blogs" on the right. She is an old friend from way back in High School and we just re-re connected. She has decided to start a blog about her adventures in England. I am really looking forward to reading it and staying in better contact with her!

Well that's pretty much it for now. You probably already noticed that I didn't have any photographs for today - I just couldn't pull anything out of the hat for today. (We also spent most of the evening watching Lost season 1 episodes so most of the time was wasted with that!)

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Do you really NEED a mouse?

I mean how important are they really anyway. If the pointer will move what more do you need? Well, I guess you need a CLICK!!! For some reason after I left this morning (with everything working fine) the Mac decided it didn't want to do a mouse click anymore but instead it would open the spotlight window (for non-mac folks, this is a way cool system search thing that works pretty darn well). So, left click - spotlight, right click - spotlight, middle click - well nothing. Denise calls me this morning asking what the heck is up with the computer. Well, I have only been doing this mac thing for a year so it isn't like I have everything memorized like I did with XP so I wasn't sure where to begin. I did try to walk her through a few things from remote - but it was pretty much a waste of time.

When I got home I was able to narrow it down to (I think) a mighty mouse driver conflict. Now I only figured this out because after I tried everything else I could think I plugged back in the old mouse and everything started working again. So I removed the "control panel" for the Logitech mouse and rebooted the mac. So far everything is working fine, though I am not completely sure I really fixed the problem. I did shut down a few times and logged in as different users to try and mimic the problem. But everything seems to be okay (I think Bob (the mac) just doesn't like her).
So, I know you are dying to know what Nissan said about the radio... Well, so am I!!! I guess calling back wasn't part of the deal. I think you have to pay extra for that, though I thought I was CLOSE to that price considering the ransom I paid them yesterday.

I think I hate Nissan

Okay, here is the deal. You may remember a week or so ago I took my Murano into the dealership to have the Bose CD player and power mirrors looked at and fixed. I gave them instructions to keep the vehicle until they were done with it. In the meantime they also informed me that I should have the 30k mile service done and then told me I also needed new tires. So that whole ordeal was a little over $1k. Anyway, I have the day off and we decide to go into town - Bakersfield to be exact because Nissan tells me they have the new radio and the car will be done today, "Come on by at 5pm and pick it up" is what they tell me. So I think, heck, it is like 1pm right now so this will work out great. We can go into town, do some running around, and go pick up the car!

So, I go and get the car and pay my ransom money to them. But, in the mean time we start SERIOUSLY looking at the Nissan Titan trucks. They just happen to have a model with the features I want and we do the look around, drive, and numbers game. So we get all the paperwork on the deal and head out to leave so we can look at the PAIN and decide if we want to do it. I figure no problem, just drive the van and my Murano over to our pre-selected dinner spot and we can talk about it and stuff like that. Plus I am thinking about the nice Bose CD sound I am going to enjoy on the way over there.

But wait, I start to drive away, turn on the radio, switch over to CD and NOTHING. Well, nothing as in the display says "PRESS EJECT". So like I press EJECT and it does nothing but continues to say "PRESS EJECT". I mean WTFO. They had the car since last - last Thursday and the boneheads didn't CHECK to make sure the CD player actually WORKED!!! I mean give me a break. So now I dropped the car back off at the dealer at their "early bird" window and I still don't have my car.

Needless to say I am pissed off about this. I mean they should have fixed the damn thing. So I dropped $1k for the other crap (service and tires) and I still don't have a car to drive. Well I guess I could have kept it and who knows WHEN I would have been able to get back over there to drop it off again. This is total BS.

Oh, and about the truck. We are not completely sure what we are going to do about that. We don't really want to extend and increase a payment, but damn those are really nice trucks and it would be nice to have something that everyone could fit into that we could also pull the trailer behind. More than likely we are not going to do the truck thing - but we haven't ruled it out yet either.

So, aren't car dealerships just WONDERFUL!!!

Okay, so it appears that they are going to have to order another Bose radio for the car. I have not yet received a followup call on this so I am not really sure where we are with this. I did tell them that I was NOT happy about this and that they needed to do something to make this right. I am not sure if they are going to do anything, but I hope they do. I also don't know when I am going to get my car back. So stay tuned for this experience!

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Merry Christmas...

Well the big day finally arrived and the kids made out like champs! You can see here them playing with their favorite toy, the Leapster eeked out over the other toys today. Though Devin also spent a lot of time playing his new Star Wars video game. It is one of those self contained games you just plug into a television. Desirae's other favorite toy was her knitting machine and mermaids. Deanna was completely uninterested in everything that was going on.

My back is still out-of-whack so I didn't take any photographs today and pretty much just laid low. I did spend most of the day ripping the CD's we got for Christmas. Denise got me Ozzy Osbourne - Prince of Darkness and I got her The Chronicles of Narnia. The Narnia set was an audio book that included 33 CDs. She is really looking forward to it. The Ozzy CD set was pretty cool and something I was thinking about getting; and it's pretty good too. Denise also caught me taking a nap with Deanna. She was pretty fussy at one point and I just took her back and had her lay down with me.

Well we hope you all had a Merry Christmas and got everything that you were hoping for!

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Christmas Eve...

Amazingly enough the kids have been pretty good today, so I don't think there will be any coal tomorrow! It was a pretty lazy day today and we did not really do too much. I tweaked my back somehow so I have been laid up pretty much most of the day. I have no idea what I did, I just hope it goes away tomorrow!

I was thinking about backdrop stands and I have been looking at them on eBay. Well, for the most part they are basically just light stands with a pole so I improvised with my other two light stands and a metal beam for the other crib the we have in the garage. It made a perfect backdrop stand so I decided to just out the stand and the flash. Below are the pictures I took of Desirae then Devin.

Friday, December 23, 2005

First Attempt at rice...

Yesterday we tried to feed Deanna some rice cereal. She is showing all the signs of being ready for solid food so Denise gave it a try. We don't think that she really ate anything - but it was the first step though. We are kind of surprised though considering she is four months old and premature at that. She does seem to be doing a lot better when we medicate her up. Otherwise she is VERY snorty and has a difficult time breathing...
Okay - I think I need to clarify something about comments. I have turned on comment moderation so that I have to approve comments before they are posted. This is a sanity check to make sure nothing odd is posted. So, if you post a comment and it doesn't show up it doesn't mean it didn't work - it just means I have to check the comment before it is posted.

I almost forgot - our new table top arrived yesterday. They were scheduled to be here between 1200 and 1600 hours and they arrived at 1030... Kind of weird for delivery. So, Denise and I were both expecting something to be wrong and I think because of that everything was fine. So we FINALLY have a new table that we don't have to worry about falling apart. Even with all the problems that we had we are really happy with the table.

Thursday, December 22, 2005


Do you ever consider your perspective when you look at things? I mean you can have something in front of you that to anyone else can be a simple gingerbread house but if your perspective is skewed what do you see? How is it that different people can look at the exact same situation and perceive it completely differently then the next person? I suppose it is the old adage “can’t see the forest through the trees”. Some things just don’t need to be so complicated…

Deanna is responding well to the new medications so that is a relief...

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Deanna's sick

So I guess our lot in life is to have a sick kid every other week. Or at least it feels that way. So Deanna was up pretty much non-stop starting at around 1 am. I took the day off so that I could get Devin out the door and take care of Deanna so Denise could get some sleep. Then Denise (after almost 3 complete hours of sleep) took Deanna into urgent care. As is typical in these situations it is 6:53 pm right now and Denise still has not been able to pick up the prescription. She is on her way back to the pharmacy so hopefully it will be ready - but I wouldn't count on it. If they do have everything ready then she can start the 45 minute drive back home. So needless to say she is have SO MUCH fun today!

The only other interesting thing is I took the kids out to lunch when Devin got home from school. They were pretty good though neither of them really ate anything.

Hopefully tomorrow will be better...

I do have an idea for a photograph that I want to take. It is going to be a bit more sophisticated then I have done before and it is going to be a location shoot. I can see the image in my mind and I think I can pull it off. I have to find the right location and props and then figure out the time of day. This image has been stuck in my mind for a few days now. I will need Denise to be play a key part in the photograph and I think it will work. We MIGHT be able to give it a try this weekend but I am not sure. Anyway stay tuned...

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Some assembly required...

Today ended with the kids (mainly Denise) making a Ginger Bread house. It was one of those kits but it was pretty cool. Devin in particular was wanting to do this all evening and he finally got his chance after dinner.

Nana and Max also left today to drive back to Livermore. We had a really great time this weekend and it was great that they came down. The kids really enjoyed it too - though we had to drag Devin away from his new video games to say goodbye. He was like "Goodbye!" as he moved his head toward the door but his eye's never broke contact with the television. We finally shut it down for a few so he could do it properly.

Well, tomorrow should be interesting. Everyone on my little team is on leave and the SHTF (again) last week so I have a bunch of stuff (busy work) to do while they are gone. I am "like so" looking forward to it I doubt I will be able to contain the excitement to sleep tonight! Anyway - hopefully it isn't too bad and like Denise said this isn't going to last forever. I also have a studio light en-route this week so at least I have something to look forward to each day (it could arrive any day!).

Saturday, December 17, 2005


The main point for the visit from Nana and Max today was to do an early Christmas for the kids. They were VERY excited about this and couldn't wait to open presents. We did wait a bit until everyone was able to wake up and take showers. Devin and Desirae were VERY good about it, but when time came to open presents they were ready to go. First up was the presents they (Devin and Desirae) bought for Nana and Max. That included fishing stuff and it was cute how excited the kids were in giving them their presents. Then it was down hill from there as Devin and Desirae ripped through all their presents. It was good fun and it is always great to watch the kids like this.

We also did the Christmas dinner thing and made turkey and all the normal stuff. I think we have decided to just do all turkeys in the grill so we did that again today. The only problem we ran into was when we ran out of propane, but I had another tank - switch them out -and was up and running again. Even finished on time.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Friday - Nana & Max

Nana and Max came down this weekend to spend an early Christmas with the kids. Devin and Desirae were really looking forward to them coming down. Fortunately they were able to leave early and made it down in pretty quick time so they had a good opportunity to play with the kids. So tomorrow's plan is to basically have an early Christmas complete with a turkey dinner and the kids will open their presents (from Nana & Max) probably in the morning. It should be interesting!

On the work front I am SO GLAD that it is Friday. This week was really a pain and I was really glad for it to be over. Next week is going to be a lot of fun (sarcasm intended) especially with everyone gone - so I will get hit (or continue to get hit) with all the BS that is my current work situation. At least I have a new monitor at work to make the mundane look better (feeble attempt at optimism).

I also got a call from the Nissan folks saying - OBTW - you need new tires... So this entire ordeal is going to end up costing me about $850. I am not very happy about that I would have rather had that occur in a couple of months (I knew the tire thing was coming). Had a realized that I probably wouldn't have done the service on it - and just stuck with the warranty repair. Speaking of that - they ordered a new replacement stereo and I should get my car back sometime next week.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Adventures in Bakersfield...

Well, I finally got sick and tired of the left channel on the cd player and the left mirror control in the Murano going out that I finally called and got an appointment to take it in today. Everything is still under warranty (thank god) and since Devin had a physical therapy appointment it worked out pretty good. There is also a service advisory on it so they are going to check that out as well. I probably won't get the car back for a week because it looks like they are going to replace the stereo in it and that will have to be ordered. I told them that I didn't really care how long it took and that I didn't want to get the car until it is finished because of the distance. So I will just drive the Bronco until they are done.

After that we hit Barnes and Noble were I purchased Portrait Photography: Secrets of Posing & Lighting which looks like a REALLY good book. For looking at it while there it seems to cover a lot of information in detail with diagrams so I think it is going to be pretty good. I did see this book reviewed in a magazine and it was on my short list of books to check out. I actually went there to find a different book (which they had) but after looking at it decided not to get because it didn't really have the information that I wanted.

From there we went to dinner at the Red Lobster (that's were the photograph was taken) and had a pretty nice dinner. We haven't gone there in a long while and it was pretty nice. We also arrived early so it wasn't too busy and we were seated as soon as we got there. But the time we left the place was packed. On another note - the photo was taken at an ISO of 1600 with that 20 F2.8 lens - I sure like that lens for stuff like that...

So it was a pretty long day but at least we got some things accomplished!

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Gift Exchange...

The local "Mom & Me" group had a gathering, gift exchange and potluck at our house today. Denise said the turn out was really good with 12 adults and 18 children at the house. I called at one point to see how everything was going and it sure sounded like there was a ton of people over there. Other than one kid getting some splinters in their hand there were no catastrophes and everyone seemed to have fun. Desirae got some type of make-up thing, at least I think that is what it was - it could have been a drawing thing too - I was not really sure.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

It's only Tuesday...

Well, not too much going on today. It feels more like a Thursday instead of a Tuesday but oh well. Deanna was in a pretty good mood when I got home and she was smiling, laughing, and drooling. She didn't seem to mind me taking her photograph either although the flashes were surprising to her.

Denise bought Deanna a "Bumbo Chair" which the physical therapist showed her the last time she took Deanna. It is really nice and gives really good support for the body to sit up straight. It is really wonderful for working on head/neck control. We had Deanna in that a lot today and it was really neat to see her sitting up. She can only do it for about 30 minutes before it is too much for her, but she did that multiple times today. I will try to get a photograph of that soon.

Denise has an event at the house tomorrow - though I can't remember what it is right now. So she spent time making candies and such. I had to fix the office area - which meant shredding everything that has been piling up for the last week or so. It seems like we get a ton of junk mail everyday.

Oh, Kris had a really good come back for my posting yesterday,
How do you know when you have too much photo equipment? When somebody at a child’s Christmas play thinks you work the local newspaper!
I think he MIGHT have a point...

Monday, December 12, 2005

First Grade Christmas Program

Tonight was the school Christmas program where the first graders performed for their parents. They had four different classes perform a variety of songs. Devin's class, Mrs. William's class, was the 3 to up on stage and they performed "Must Be Santa" and "Rudolph, the Red Nosed Reindeer". It was pretty fun to watch and it looked like the kids (and parents) were having a pretty good time. We were a little worried at first because when the class first came out Devin was nowhere to be found but they brought him out after everyone else was in place. This time they had him stand and didn't make him sit - he wasn't on the platform but he was standing there with everyone else - and this time he even sang!

I did have one parent come up to me asking if I was taking photographs for the paper (I told him I wasn't) and then he asked me to take photographs of his kid so I went ahead and did that. When I went back to get his email address he tried to give me money but I refused. I guess I should check into the paper thing - I mean if I am going to take the shots anyway I might as well offer then to the local (weekly) paper.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Putting up the tree...

Well, this is a bit odd because we pieced it together like a puzzle - but it doesn't look too bad and the already setup lights are pretty cool. It is actually bigger than the last couple we have had too - in this photograph it doesn't have the top on it. Devin, as usually was really wanting to help. I will try to get another picture of everything complete but I just didn't get around to it today. But at least we finally have one and I think Denise is happier with this because we don't have to worry about watering it or having it die on us. We generally get tress late because we want to make sure they last so now we will be able to put it up right after Thanksgiving.

We have also done most of our shopping already (online) and we are just waiting for things to arrive now. We did get a couple of things yesterday when we were out - but generally we are doing the online thing again this year.

Oh, one other thing. I had lost one of the disfuser domes for one of my flashes and I could not figure out where it was. I was planning on just buying another one to replace it. When we were moving stuff around to put up the decorations Denise found it next to the couch - so now I have found everything (I think) that I have misplaced from my camera gear. I am happy about that!

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Christmas Cards...

We decided to try a shot of the kids to include in the Christmas cards Denise is getting ready to send out (probably Monday). It was kind of an impromptu shot setup in a makeshift studio in the living room. Once complete I edited in Photoshop and then uploaded it to Costco for printing and we picked up the prints when we went into town. That was the first time we have tried that and it worked very well and was pretty cool.

The whole point of going into town was to purchase a fake tree. We found one that we liked at Sears and it is sitting in the Murano right now. We got home kind of late so we will set it up and decorate tomorrow. It was kind of weird buying a fake tree - but at least we don't have to worry about Devin having problems a real tree in the house - and we don't have to worry about it dying on us!

We also stopped by Kris's house on the way back and our wives had a chance to meet for the first time. Well, this was also the first time I ever met his wife. That was cool and we even went to dinner together. At least the kids didn't drive them TOO crazy. Oh - and I got to see his new Canon 20D digital camera... That's pretty neat!

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Day Trip

This is a photograph from the other day - but I thought I would post it anyway! Denise rounded all the kids up and headed out to Michelle's today for a little (long) day trip. I don't really know the entire reason for the trip but I think it had something to do with getting Michelle some stuff that she either left here or needed. But considering they are leaving for Bolivia sometime this month and will be gone for a minimum of 4 mouths to determine if they are going to stay there forever I figure if Denise wants to see her sister, then she should go! As it stands right now they are on their way back and haven't made it yet.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Playing with light...

We decided to play with some lighting techniques - or at least to play with a single strobe to try and figure out if we could like a portrait a certain way. I say we because Denise was the photographer for most of the shots tonight. So the setup basically included a single Nikon SB800 shot into an umbrella and I used the window shade from my car as a reflector. It was really kind of neat to play with setting up the light in different configurations and positions and to watch the change of light with the use of the reflector. It was also the first time I had been on the other side of the lens when flashes were in use - so that was kind of a different perspective as well. We kind of ran out of our window with Deanna so we didn't get a chance to take a photograph of Devin, but he was VERY helpful on reflector duty. Again the main point was to play with the flash units and try understand a bit better how the different configurations were going to work.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Deanna's last day of PT...

Today was Deanna's last day of PT. They still want us to continue doing the exercises for her - but they are pleased with her progress and think that she is fine. The lump on her neck is not that bad any more either. So at least Denise doesn't have two mandatory trips in town, now we only have the one for Devin.

Oh we have about had it with our medical insurance and since it currently is open season we are going to make a switch. We will be getting out of this HMO BS and into a PPO. I know it will probably nickel and dime us to death - but our current HMO is doing the same thing - including limiting our DME so they are now not covering all of Devin's braces. They have setup a per year limit on DME and as of right now we have hit that limit. The new plan just has a 10% charge on the equipment. The only bad thing about that is you don't really know what you are going to be paying because they don't know what the charge is until they get it. Sounds a bit confusing but what the heck, we are sick of Pacific Care and are switching...

Oh, I do have an interesting story about that new Domke camera bag I purchased off eBay. As you may recall it was in a unique color (olive with black trim) and I am pretty darn happy with it. Well, I wanted to find out if I could get another model bag in the same color combination so I wrote Domke to ask them about it and I commented on my recent eBay purchase. I received a reply email from them saying that they don’t have bags in that color and that I have a knockoff. I replied back saying that was a bummer and I also forwarded the Domke email to the person I bought the bag from. I received a reply from the seller telling me she was the head of Domke for a while and that she had the bags made as tests or trade shows and such with a bunch of other detailed information. I thought that was a bit surprising and I ended up sending that back to Domke asking if I was getting completely snowed. They then responded back saying they were surprised by my attachment and that he would have no idea as to the samples that were made in the past and to “Rest assured that what she said then, is that you (I) have an authentic Domke Bag.” So, at least I know I wasn’t scammed and I also have something pretty darn rare. Heck – even if it was a fake it was such a good one that I would have gotten years of use out of it. Considering that I have been using my original Domke back since mid 80’s and it is still in good shape I can’t complain about their quality!

On a final note I have been using the image below as my desktop image for the last couple of days. It has really started to grow on me and I thought I would share it here. It was the other photograph I was talking about from this Sunday.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Photos at work...

Well I had a quick lunch today but I decided to stop by the museum today and take some abstract engine photographs. I only spent about 15 minutes there (if that) but it was nice to do some photography wise and get my mind off the normal work stuff.

I did have an idea for a portrait of Devin that I wanted to take today when I got home, but I never pulled it off. I got home, we headed out for dinner and by the time we got back it was pretty much time for the kids to start getting ready for bed. So maybe tomorrow I can give it a try.

Oh, I have also been listening to the podcast and it has been VERY interesting and educational. That is probably the reason I made the shots today because I was listening to it at lunch and it got me thinking. Pretty neat stuff - those podcasts.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Too early...

Well, I finally did get up early before the sunrise and made my way out in the desert! And you know what? That was not any fun at all! I happened to get my self situated before the sun came up and made a few captures of a joshua tree. Denise liked this one the best and I went ahead and used this shot and another I took this morning plus the rock image and used them in the dinning room. So I now have something on that wall. I only used three shots so I have 1 large frame and 2 small frames left - so I should be able to do something with those too.

Denise went into town today to the grocery store and bought some fruit. When she got home she thought that the tangerines would make a nice photograph. She had some old black flannel that I used as the background, her white pie dough rolling thing, and a single flash. It turned out pretty good and the black background worked out pretty good.

I also lost the lens cap for my 18-70mm lens. I think I lost it when I did the dirt path photograph a couple of days ago. I thought maybe it was in one of my pockets or in the Bronco but it is nowhere to be found. The thing that really sucks about this is that they are $14 for a stupid lens cap - but I guess I need to replace it before I bash the front element and kill the lens.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Rocks & Bakersfield

I made an attempt to get up early and try to re-shoot the dirt road photograph. I didn't get out as early as I would have liked and I also did not find a road that looked good to shoot. I did end up going up the hill we use as our shooting backdrop and took a panorama of the town and this rock photograph. The pano didn't turn out as good as I would have hoped and of the different images this shot turned out the best.

When I got home Desirae really wanted me to take a photograph of her. The lighting was really nice in the office and I decided to try a reflector on her left side to see if that would make a difference. It actually worked really well and softened the shadow on the left side of her face (right side of the photograph). The photograph before I did that the shadow was pretty dark.

We did something different and went to Bakersfield today. Denise really wanted to go to Babies-R-Us to see if they had a particular bag she wanted (they did) and to go to the Macaroni Grill for lunch/dinner. Other than the gobs of people that were out and about it was pretty nice. The only other place we went was Wal-Mart (which was a MAJOR zoo, to get pants for Devin) and drove through Starbucks for a coffee. With all the people out there it took WAY TOO LONG to do everything. We had originally planned to go to my grandmother's house - but we just ran out of time and needed to head home.

I do have an idea for some photographs tomorrow and I am going to try and head out early tomorrow morning to see if I can get something good.