Friday, April 06, 2018

A Good Crop - 2018-Q1

Over the past several years, I've done a year end photo review, based on the old Ansel Adams quote "Twelve significant photographs in any one year is a good crop."...

Well, this year, I decided to take the 1/4 pole and see how the year is going.

I had a couple of personal goals for the year:
  • Use my DSLR.  I've gotten lazy, or perhaps complacent with the generally good quality of my Compact Digital and iPhone 7.  But I want to be more "intentional", and also not settle for "generally good" as easily.
  • Focus on Photography...  but NOT stress about photo-a-day.  Plan photo excursions and go crazy.  I'm still posting the best (or favorite) at 365project, but over several albums, and backdating....
    So, how's that going, and what do I have to say for myself?

    • I'm taking a lot more photos.  Just based on what I'm posting at 365project, I've presented 56% more photos than 2017Q1.  
    • I'm using (and enjoying) my DSLR.  It represents 44% of the posted photos this quarter, vs only 11% in 2017Q1.  That works out to a 500% increase based on posted images!
    • My ratio's of "popular" and "trending" photos is double the first quarter last year, Which is some measure of success.  And I have a lot more photos that I'm really pleased with.
    • I've started posting selected photos to Facebook from my photo outings.  And have had several people give good feedback (face to face and in posted comments).  That's pretty cool.  I've also started cross posting some of those to one of the facebook photography groups I'm on.


    A couple of interesting things, maybe negatives, maybe just things:
    • I find that I'm not participating in as many challenges at 365project as before.  Rather than thinking about an "assignment", I'm going where happenstance leads me.Probably a bit of good and bad to that.  And I missed the WorldWidePhotoMinute last month, which ticked me off.
    • I feel like haven't really been posting that much here on the blog..  But counting says I've dropped from 28 over Q1 last year to 21 this year.  So not too bad a percentage drop, but still far from active.  Adding in Happenstance, and the numbers tell a different story.  My posting there is way UP, 38 images over Q1 this year, vs only 14 last year.  So maybe I'm just crazy.  Still 59 posts over 90 days, split between 2 blogs?  Not setting the world on fire.
    Anyway, I feel like it is a godd start, and I'm hoping I can keep it up.  Still looking for new venues / photo-communities.   Any suggestions?

    Wednesday, April 04, 2018

    I Just Wanna Be Popular - March 2018

    A continuing series....   (January, February):

    Most of you know that I post regularly to 365project.org.  Or if you didn't, you do now!  Check out my project!  Anyway, they have a function that selects photos for their "Popular" page.  Of course, the actual algorithm to define what's popular is secret, but it is still cool when one of my images makes the cut.


    So, looking back at March 2018, what did I do that was popular?  I posted 36 images to my three albums in March, and only had 1 make the popular page.  Kind of disappointing, after 3 in January and 5 in February.  But I aslo had 1 make Trending (but not popular), so that's cool:

    Popular:


    posted 3/24/2018

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    Trending:


    posted 03/11/2018

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    I actually had several photos I quite like in March, but they didn't make "popular".   I'm not really sure what all goes into the algorithm, though....

    Aside:  The post title is taken from the Pete Townshend song from his album Scoop

    Monday, April 02, 2018

    Pitt Is It

    Spent a few days in Pittsburgh, as my son is considering U of Pitt.  Managed a few images around campus:




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    Sunday, April 01, 2018

    Around The 'Burgh

    From last week's trip to Pittsburgh / Univerity Of Pittsburgh.  A few non-campus shots:


    It was grey and rainy almost the whole trip...  I saw these two while aiting for the elveator at the hotel (7th floor aspect).  


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    Hot O Shop....  This is along Forbes Ave, in / around Pitt campus.  Looks like this place was here when I lived just up the road (in the 70's)...  but I don't remember.



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    Interesting remnants of something....    I came across this site by happenstance. Driving around the north hills of Pittsburgh (Shaler Township). Not sure what it was, but I thought it was pretty interesting. 



    Looks like a large loading bay facing the road. 
    The ramp at the back, going out of picture to the left crosses a stream, to (remains of) a small building by a railroad track. To the right is a large open field, presumably the former site of an industrial facility.The the main road (Rt. 8). I'm guessing this was some sort of depot for whatever factory used to be here.

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    Homeless....  We saw these two gentleman a couple of times over the 3 days...  Outside the CVS on Forbes Ave.  


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     We passed though Cleveland on the way home.  This is actually Ohio City, on the west side of the Cuyahoga River from Cleveland.  Lots of effects here, to emphasize the lines....


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    Friday, March 30, 2018

    Jerry's Records Again

    Another trip to Pittsburgh, and another trip to the greatest record store in the world!  As I noted last fall, Jerry's is "An amazing place, bin after bin after bin of records, along with stacks and stacks of records and all surrounded with shelves and shelves of records."  And it still is.

     Here's some photos...  It looks small from the outside, but up the stairs, it's huge!




    My son and I spent ~1 hr wandering the stacks, and came up with a nice selection.    Could've stayed longer, and bought more, but.....

    So, my purchases (in alphabetical order)
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    The Jags - Evening Standards.  The Jags had a "hit" in 1979 with song "Back Of My Hand".  I had (and have) on 45.  This is the 1980 album that includes the single.  I spot checked a couple songs at the store, it seems good.
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    Marshall Tucker Band - Ride Like The Wind.  I had looked for this on CD a couple of times, but never found it.  This is the last album by MTB from the 70's (this is 1979) and the only one from that decade that's not represented in my collection.  I don't know any of songs, though.
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    Original Soundtrack - FM.  From the 1978 movie.  I've had this one (CD format) on my Amazon Wishlist for a while, but haven't pulled the trigger.  Seems to me it just belongs on Vinyl though, as an homage to 1970's FM radio.
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    Original Soundtrack - More Music from The Man From U.N.C.L.E.  My son saw this on the way out, had to buy it for the album cover alone.But how can you go wrong with the topic, and "arrnaged and conducted by" Hugh Montenegro!
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    Linda Ronstadt - Living In The USA.  For some reason, I never had this 1978 release from LR.  I do have her previous 4 releases, and saw her on this tour.  And I know probably 1/2 the songs.  A solid addition, if a no risk one.
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    Sniff 'n' The Tears - The Game's Up. (sealed)  I know Sniff 'n' The Tears from their 1978 debut release "Fickel Heart", which featured the awesome song "Driver's Seat".  I bought that album (in 1978) based on the strength of the song, and the album is really solid.  But they didn't exactly go on to stardom in the US.  This is their 2nd album, I hope it is as good as the first!


    My son added three albums, I can't speak to them, but he gets high marks for interesting!

    Devoto Noko - Luxuria
    Stark Raven - One Hundred Million Rwasons
    Three O'Clock Train - Muscle In




    Monday, March 12, 2018

    The One You Have With You?

    So, one of the truisms I've long touted is "The best camera is the one you have with you".  In my case, I mean it as a recognition of the value of a smaller, more portable camera.  It is one of the reasons why I have a good compact digital:  a camera that fits in a shirt pocket or a briefcase.  But it has occasionally become an excuse for not using my "better" DSLR.  after all, it is larger, bulkier...  more ...  ...  ... noticeable.  Recognizing that, one of my goals in 2018 is to push myself to do more with the "good" camera.  And I'm pretty pleased with my results so far.

    BUT, there are times that the compact digtal and iPhone still earn their keep.

    Last weeekend we made a quick trip to Janesville, WI, and I discovered a cool nature area,  Carver-Roehl State Natural Park.  Unfortunately, the lighting was rather harsh, but I still managed to take lots of photos.  Some of which I like.  Almost all from my DSLR, but here's a few from my iPhone:






    That last one is my favorite from the day.  Shot on a iPhone, processed on the phone (with a free ap: snapseed). 

    I'll post some of the "real" camera images in the next day or so....  but here's a teaser:

    Carver-Roehl State Natural Area #1

    Friday, March 02, 2018

    I Just Wanna Be Popular - February 2018

    Most of you know that I post regularly to 365project.org.  Or if you didn't, you do now!  Check out my "project"!  Anyway, they have a function that selects photos for their "Popular" page.  Of course, the actual algorithm to define what's popular is secret, but it is still cool when one of my images makes the cut.


    So, looking back at February 2018, what did I do that was popular?  I posted 40 images to my three albums in January, and had 5 make the popular page.  Here' they are, in chronological order:


    Posted 02/01/2018

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    02/17/2018

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    02/22/2018

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    02/24/2018

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    * "On Target" and "Lost In My Mind" also were tagged as Trending, which the site defines as "the Hottest photos on 365 right now".  So I think that meeans super-popular?

     
    Aside:  The post title is taken from the Pete Townshend song from his album Scoop

    Sunday, February 25, 2018

    Lost In My Mind... Saturday Photos 02/24/2018


    So, I planned to do a photo excursion Saturday afternoon.  It was grey, but dry all morning and into the afternoon.  Right up until the time I was looking to head out (2-3pm), when the rains moved in.

    I almost aborted, but decided to push on.  I headed out to Choteau Island, and managed to come up with a few images I'm happy with.  The one above seems to have been particularly well received,   After 24 hours at my 365project, this has received a Popular tag and the rarer Trending.  And is now my #2 "Top Rated" photo in my 3 years at the site.  (behind, coincidentally, another photo of the same bridge).  UPDATE:  as of 2/26/2018, this is now my Top Rated photo on the site.  Yee ha!

    Here's the others from yesterday:

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    Friday, February 23, 2018

    Tonight * * * Walk The Moon


    So, yesterday was my son's birthday, and he wanted to go see a concert with a couple of his friends.  After some negotiating, we agreed, even though it was a school night.  Part of the negotiation was that I drive, since they're not very familiar with that part of town, and we didn't know what the weather would be like, and, and, and. 

    I did check out some of their songs, and happened to cacth them on the Tonight Show, so I figured they weren't too evil wicked mean and nasty.  Couldn't the actual performance on line, but this is the song they played.

    So, it was off to The Pageant to see the band "Walk The Moon". 

    And, of course, I did manage a couple of iPhone shots afterwards, waiting for the boys to get through the Merchandise line.

    Verdict:  They boys gave the show highest marks.  Enthusiastic highest marks.

    I'm glad they had a good time, and I like the photo I took.  And while I'm a little disappointed I wasn't invited, I certainly understand.  And it brings back memories of  the couple of times when my dad dropped me off at venues to see a show.

    Wednesday, February 21, 2018

    Between the lines of age...


    Just a little something at a barn down the street a bit....    Thanks to Neil Young for the title, from the song Words.

    Tuesday, February 20, 2018

    Weekend Photos - 2/17/2018

    I've been trying to take some time for photography at least once per weekend...  real live "photo outings".  Last weekend, I woke up to snow, and decided to stay pretty local.  Most of these were taken around the Mont Rd intersection of the Glen Carbon Heritage and the Goshen Bike Trails...

    Click on title for larger version at 365project.

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    It was a nice outing, just over about an hour, covering probably less than 2 miles of wandering... 

    Happy Ansel Adams' Birthday!!

    Ansel Adams was born on this day (2/20) in 1902.  Adams was, of course, a rock star in the world of photography, famous for his black and white landscape photography. 

    Ansel Adams was a significant inspiration when I was learning photography.  I'd like to say influence, but that would give myself too much credit I think. I remember studying the images in his books in my high school library, and seeing his exhibit at the Smithsonian back in the early 80's. 

    It has been over 30 years since he died, but his photographs live on.

    So, what are YOUR favorite Ansel Adams photos?

    My top 3 are:
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    And a pretty obscure one: