Tag Archives: Garden

The Grass Is Always Greener … Covid-19

The Grass Is Always Greener on the other side, and it’s true. Now get this, ….I know why and I will tell you all right now. The grass nis greener over there because there’s more bullshit (pardon my profanity) over there to fertilize it.

Anyway I always thought that I’d love to have more time to work in Light Room. It’s been an unrealized dream.

I’m not a heavy shooter, just 186lbs…laffs. The thing is, I have time to process from a days shoot because ,I don’t burn a lot of pixels. The time I dreamt of was time to go thru decades of photos and re-shoot them and find the ones I let sleep in hopes of one day bringing them home. Well Mr Covid 19 has put the lid down on my thinking. Now I have the time  to do the editing and sorting I always wanted.

The time we desire is the time we waste and the time we live is the time worth dying for. Now I have time to edit and process and whatever. I even have time to discover the things in LR that Olivier shows me. What do I do, well the green green grass of home is with my cameras.  Lucky enough, We have a garden out back and big enough I can find things to make photos of.

So, having time to spare and waste, causes the brain to kinda turn to spaghetti. I said to my self,  don,, yes…. we need to do photography but spend time doing it. Hmmmm we both thinks me has a good idea. I will take the new Fuji X100V  out to the garden and make 1 frame Just 1. Ok, sooo where’s the magic? Well I go and make 1 frame and then come into the PC and do Light Room on that 1 frame.

The idea for me is, to use time productively and be aware of the process.  This method works. I have shot a fair amount of frames and processed a fair amount. This gives me the experiences that I no longer have till Mr Covid-19 let’s us breathe again.

This has been an ordeal for Tanya and me. I’ mean we all know I am easy to live with, get along with almost everyone, just a joy to be around. Well, sure we all know that, it’s a constant in the universe. The thing is, Tanya has her own ideas. Every time I go to the garden, she wants to know what I’m doing.

See, she knows when I have a camera in hand, I am in another plane of existence. I could walk on her seedlings or plants etc raspberry or strawberry plants and then not even know I destroyed things. But I get the photo I tellya, like she gives a hoot, no damn sure don’t  Even Barsik the cat is careful in the garden We have there bags and fill them with  good soil and she plants stuff in them. They are great because you can move them to where the sunlight is. Barsik thinks they are his litter bags.

Of course for me everything is camera food. I mean Mr Covid-19 has locked me in and as I write this, I am 33 dayz in.   I started to wonder what Tanya is doing in the yard. She’s smart and frugal as she’s digging a big rectangular hole. I guess she want’s fresh dirt cause it’s a deep hole.  She’s digging and the looks at me and has this kinda weird smile like a Hitchcock smile, Well, I won’t say anything we both need to have a way to spend our time.

Stay in, stay focused, stay safe and keep an eye out for others. We are all in this together so, be aware………….I’ll write again soon but Tanya just told me I don’t have to worry about that. She’s digging and a digging…..

Streets Of Philadelphia … A Visual Diary … Page 63 … A Gift Of Life From The Garden


My wife and I do a nice garden every year. Well, Tanya makes the garden and I make the photos from it. It’s very inspiring to me and also rewarding in a way that’s hard to explain. It’s like New Life has come to visit me and maybe help me settle a little with the anguish living inside me. I won’t get too mushy here or explain too much detail but I will state that I feel every Vet from every war would benefit from doing a garden. Instead of seeing things dying all the time and that’s not just in Combat, it’s the aftermath that is the hard time to deal with and they call that PTSD. Vets see their relationships slipping away and dying and not know how to deal with it and even worse, not give a shit about it anyway.

The Garden brings new life without prejudice of what was before. So, I do as the flowers etc suggest…..just bring a camera and enjoy making photos….and I do.


The Tulips are just starting to come up and they call to me right away. Tanya does a lot of work like the Garden’s Mother taking care of her children. I go out and just find a few moments of peace and tranquility. I don’t expect or ask for more.

Every minute is “A Gift From A Flower To A Garden”.

May 30th, 2014 … The Fuji X100s – XXX Rated Version

05-14-0485-EditSo I was working on some interviews for The Inspired Eye Magazine. I read an email from a woman shooter that has an amazing eye and she is being interviewed now. I was very happy to read that she enjoyed my blog post and especially yesterday’s. Thank you Maria K…that made my day and will for days to come.

So I didn’t sleep last night. The unnamed Fuji X100s was on my mind. (Really it was Doc Shioko but we don’t want bad relations with Russia, things are bad enough already) So I couldn’t wait for the bus and train so I ran the 15 miles and got to the VA long before my appointment. I’m in the waiting  area and there’s a lot of vets here. I mean a lot. Well, the receptionist calls out..Anyone here for Doctor so an so…3 guys raise their hands. She ask again..anyone her for Doctor so an so?…. 9 guys and 4 women raise their hands.

She ask again…is there anyone here for Doc Shioko?   95  guys raised their hands not including me.

The Fuji X100s is an amazing camera. It’s seems like it may be limiting because it sees 35mm ONLY. Well, for decades that’s what I used on my Leica M’s. Well, that is something that each must determine the value of the FOV on your work. For me, it’s still my Natural Field of View. I love it and am in the middle of a very passionate affair with…no…my unnamed camera.

It’s a perfect size for me. On the street I reconfigure myself according to how my central processing unit, brain, wants to work. Neck strap, wrist strap, thumb grip on/off, it depends on what’s going on. The key thing is, the camera is small but not too and also, it’s lite. I can go from horizontal to vertical very easy with no resistance due to weight and size.






So finally it was my turn to be inspected, rejected, infected and detected. Shioko tells me to put the gown on and lay on the table. Did ya ever see Superman change in a phone booth? Well, he lives down the street from and I’ll tell ya this. He’s sloooo compared to me . I was on that table before Shioko blinked twice. so I closed my eyes and let the hands of an angel discover all the pains I had caused my body over the years. She asked me, Mr Springer, have you been taking those hot showers I asked you to do?  (in my mind, I answered…No Doctor Shioko…I was waiting for you)..in reality I said.. Tanya said I can only do 1 a day because I’m too old to do that many hot showers.

Shioko stated ..I will call her and explain why you need to relax the muscles.  (I’m dead meat, caught between a common reality and my dreams.) I said to Shioko.” Doc, not a good idea, Tanya would not agree and regardless of what she would agree with you, I will have to fight with her.” Shioko agreed not to call if I explained the situation. Situation, am I sick..I forgot…geeze…..

05-14-0503-EditThe framing accuracy is uncanny with the X100s. I mean it’s very, very accurate at every distance. Beautiful camera.

After Shioko spends 20 minutes checking my muscles and entering the data in my file…I sadly get ready to leave. I put my unnamed X100s in my hand with the Luigi wrist strap. Shioko says…”That’s a beautiful camera, where is it made?” Japan I said. “She says, beautiful”. I said…all things from Japan are beautiful.

She ask to see the camera and for me to show her how it works. So…hmmmm I’m thinking …3 week workshop and I can teach here how to load the battery.

I hand her the Unnamed Fuji X100s and she looks at it very closely, touching it gently. Now get this…I’m watching her inspect my camera. The camera has a 35mm fixed lens on it. We all know that. Well..(XXX Rated Part)…As she is handling the camera, won’t say fondling, I see the 35mm lens start to increase out of the body  to like 90mm. I said, that’s my camera…YAH!

05-14-0507-EditThe X100s is very responsive and fast to operate. The interface and layout on the back and top buttons make the camera a joy to use. I have yet to read the manual have yet to be stumped. Due to it’s smaller size and weight, it lends itself to getting close and not bothering anyone.

There’s a sound when the shutter is pressed that I adore. It’s the most amazing sound. Very nice to have.

Shioko says we’re don for the day and asked me if I could be there again on monday. I told her I was sleeping in the waiting area until my appointment. She laughed and thought that was funny. I was being truthful.  So the unnamed Fuji X100s and I left the hospital and headed into Center City so I could walk a few miles. I remember back in September being with my friends Ray and Pete. We walked all around and Pete was using the X100s.  Ray left and pete and I went to the Reading Market to get a beer and a shot.



05-14-0519-EditThis beer is dedicated to Ray and Pete….

Youse all have a good weekend and remember…..dunno..forgot what I was gonna say…………

April 20th, 2014 … Daido the Fuji X20 … The Importance of the Family Snapshot Album

04-14-0402I was on the beach with Bobbie, Jimmy, Mike and Jock the Pro Shooter…uh with a camera from Oz. Of course we all had our M16’s with us except Jock, as we leaned back to see the sunset. Chu Lai, VietNam  was where we were stationed for the moment. We were allowed to take off for the evening because in the morning we had to take a truck out to LZ Liz because the troops needed supplies. Jock of course was not allowed to make the run with us.  As I gazed into the sky just falling into a restful state, the sunset started to wake up.

Now I know that there’s beautiful sunsets all over the world but non ever approach the beauty of VietNam.  I thought, this is what life should be about.

My brother Jerry called me and asked if Tanya and I would like to do something on Saturday. Of course, what do ya have in mind? So we decided to make a run to Cape May NJ.  I immediately got into the camera choosing frenzy because I wanted to take someone along but who? Well, Garry and Andre’ seemed to be resting and Daido the Fuji X20 was ready to do the mission.

So I picked up Daido and a few spare batteries, much needed…and put him in my jacket pocket.


This is my Brother Jerry and sister in law but I never liked calling Helen my sister in law because she’s always been just my sister….Period! I introduced them to Daido but I didn’t tell them Daido’s name was Daido because they think I’m still kinda sane and this would not be good to name and talk to a camera around them so I just introduced them by making photos.


This is Tanya. She knows Daido and actually likes him the most of all the cameras on the shelf. She thinks he’s more intelligent and capable than any other camera because he does everything very easy in any situation.



A big treat for people at Cape May is to find very special pebbles. There’s an art to the selection procedure and there is no instruction manual for pebble selections. It’s strictly an intuitive kinda thing.


Obviously Jerry and Tanya are not caught up in The Art of Pebble Selection at Cape May Beach.


I turned around quickly and thought I saw Georgia standing there. I knew it wasn’t here because I wasn’t ever Alfred……


They let this guy out for fresh air once a day. I hear that he’s kinda lost talking to people but does very well with the Dolphin. The Dolphin was not amused and wouldn’t look at Daido….eh.


This is at the Lookout Tower that was constructed during WWII. This memorial of course was of utmost importance to me. I go thru life and I know I’ll never find my way home but memorials are constructed for all Veterans so that they have a point of reference for the journey along the way. It lets us all know that we are out there wandering thru life but not alone.


Tanya was looking up at something….she found it very interesting but I don’t think anyone else did except Daido.


My brother Jerry has many brothers that I don’t have but all those brothers that have him as a brother don’t have me as a brother but…many of the brothers he has are also my brothers because some are patriots and some are Veterans. I tried to memorize all his brothers names but it was too many to count.


I started to feel hungry so we went to a Hibachi and sat there as the chef…(Better name I don’t know)…. did his magic with his tools. He definitely had tools as he never named tham. He’s young so in time he’ll remember that crazy old shooter as he starts to name his tools and bring them to life so he can do his mission in life…

The food was good as Japanese is my favorite as is Greek, Italian, French and French Fries that I can’t eat anymore. I couldn’t make any shots of the food because it was there and then it was gone….Daido took a nap during dinner.


Sometimes a Family Snap Shooter tries to get Artsy……


Yeah, yeah, another Artsy shot.


We are at Stewarts because I was thirsty and we had sodas and soup stuff and coffee. Yup, Tanya let me drink coffee that late at night. Of course it’s now 0925 the next day and I’m still awake….


Daido was jumping on the table and talking to Aunt Helen….I wanna make a photo of Mom and Dad…..Helen of course couldn’t say no and this is their collaboration……


I was wondering how Tanya would look in that outfit…hmmmm, I guess I’ll never know.

Anyway, never ever take the Family Album for granted. It is and always will be the most important work any photographer will ever pursue.

Have a good Holiday and get yer buts making photos for the Family Album!

seeya tomorrow…………..

April 9th, 2014 … The Fuji X20 named Daido captures Mr Bokeh

04-14-0147-EditWell, I’m sure it’s no secret about the Mr Bokeh dude. There’s millions and millions of shooters that buy a lens just so that Mr Bokeh will stop by and spent time in their photos.

Let’s get this straight right from the gitgo. I don’t believe in Mr Bokeh. He’s prejudice and only lives in longer lenses. If you wanna see him in wider lenses ya gotta know how to trick him into showing up.

Anyway, I had just gotten back from town and I even made the post yesterday on this here blog about the escapades we found. Then on the shelf Daido the Fuji X20 was anxious to go back out and be in the garden and told me to get going. I did, I always listen to my cameras and that keeps my shrink at the VA busy because if I was cured then I wouldn’t need  him and he would be sent back to the factory instead of me.

Daido was ready I tell ya. He was wearing the nice black soft leather strap and looked very stylish if I say so myself. So I put him around my neck so he could see what I’m seeing but he gets to see it better than me because he has a zoomie lens and I don’t. We made a few shots of the strawberry patch because we wanted to and this way any shots we make all year get cataloged in LR so that it’s easy to see in a chronological order what was going on. So there’s not much going on in the garden yet cause it’s still way early in the season and that’s just what I thought until!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I thought I saw something move against the wall of the garage. It was just like a shadow or something and I wasn’t sure what it could have been. Man, was I in for a surprise. I changed Daido to a 28mm FOV. Se, Daido has many tricks up his lens. He can be a 28mm and even go out to 112mm. I know, I know….multi tasking may not be my forte but it sure is Daido’s.

So Daido and I slowly walked to the garage wall and that’s also where the raspberry bushes live. Barsik the Cat who thinks he’s my BOSS and that I should do everything in my power to satisfy his ever growing belly is following us to the Zone of Confrontation! I saw a Raspberry cane that looked like it had something to say. So….Daido switched into Super Macro Mode and that gets my line of sight and FOV focused to a very small narrow area. Well, I decided I had to make a photo because that”s what I do. I make photos and I work with my friends the cameras that have names and feel like they are friends and not tools so that’s THAT!!!!!!

Man Daido was at the ready. He was focusing wherever I put the focus box. No matter close or closer. He was hot and ready to work. I could feel the heat from the battery and the LCD just warming my hand to keep Daido charged and on point. Well, a few weeks ago, John the family and sports shooter from DC sent me some stuff for Daido before he was named Daido. Imagine that.

There was a magic Red and Silver button that many call a soft release. For lack of a better word, I’ll use that also. So Daido and I are getting ready to make an exposure of the Raspberry cane that lives near the garage wall and then…..to my surprise, catching me totally off guard….and making me catch my breath so as not to tremble and ruin the macro shot that Daido does so well ……

Just as I was ready to press the button that many call a soft release, on the far left of the screen I saw this guy start to appear as if he was a shadow and was going to sneak in the shot and not tell me about his presence but just be there and he thought I was stupid and that Daido the Fuji X20 wouldn’t even know he was there.

Well…Daido waited and I waited and I moved a little so that the sneaky shadow guy was in the frame and then>>>>>>>CLICK. ONE SHOT! That’s all we had, just one shot but Daido was up to the task.

Me, well…I’ll have nightmares for a long time about that guy in the shadows. See, he looks like it could be me but alas…it’s not…look close, pixel peep if you will and you’ll see that that is MR. BOKEH..alive and well on Montour Street in North East Phila, Pa USA.

shooter out………………………………………………………………………………….

April 8th, 2014 … The Un-named Fuji X20 is a Friend on the Street and gets NAMED…DAIDO!

04-14-0130-EditSo Andre’ the Fuji XP1 and Garry the Fuji XP1 were very tired and wanted to nap. I didn’t have much time today as Tanya had other plans for me besides being on the street. So, what to do, what to do? I thought about taking the Un-named Fuji x20 but geeze, I don’t even know it’s name. It has not even given me a clue and it’s been a good while.

How the heck am I supposed to go out and be serious about my photography and the camera is like a …a….a…tool! The HORROR of it all! This can not be, this will not be this is being resolved right now. Well, not actually right now because theres a time lag between you and me and writing everything and processing in LR5.4..(new update….) and a cup of Green Tea and watching CNN for a spell to get my news fix but you get the point.


So here we are and I took everyones name into consideration. The Fuji X20 which is Black with the hood and filter and stuff that John from Washington sent me is named…..the name that Tommi suggested is the one I’ll use for no other reason than it’s the right name but don’t sweat because if you submitted a name and didn;t win the grand prize, you win anyway because if you send me an email with your address and only if you LR because the presets don’t work in LR unless Olivier the wizard from Florida waves his magic wand and then all things in the digital world are fine…..well, the camera is now named Daido. This was a hard choice because I try to name a camera after a photographer that has knowingly influenced me. Daido influenced me without trying.

04-14-0117-EditSo just send an email or post your email address in the comments box and I’ll send you a set of presets. They only work in LR. I said that but for disclosure of the highest order, I must repeat. Well, not now because I already repeated it and I’m not a complete idiot, not even friends!

The thing with the X20 is that is really is an all around camera. Daido can do tele shots, normal shots, wide angle shots and even 2 ways to do macro. He’s even got this little flash hiding inside the top plate and if ya don’t know it’s there, it will never bother you. Where the heck is the on/off switch? He ain’t got one….turn the lens barrel and eureka…it’s a freakin’ miracle I tell ya.

The ISO is very good to ISO 800. Many shoot higher than that and it’s cool but noise and funky artifacts start growing and….imagine..me the image transposer worrying about noise. Yeah, I actually do. I like to control the look of my photos and not have the camera mandate what will be the result.  High ISO is good if your prepared to get that look and can work with it. I can but I want to choose when and how.

Daido does Manual Focus like he owns it and no one else can come close. It’s true, it’s true. Andre and Garry the Fuji XP1’s get angry and tell me to forget about Daido and his fancy schmancy ISO tricks. check this put…I have to post this so the XP1’s don’t get to read it or the camera shelf will be a war zone.

here’s the Hyperfocal Distances for the Fuji X20.
2.0     10.1′
2.8       7.1′
4.0     5.0′
5.6     3.5′
8.0    2.5′
11.0   1.8′

The left column, such as it is, is the f/stop on the camera. The right column is the Focus Distance, in this case the Hyperfocal Distance. If you go to any f/stop and set that on the camera, then focus the camera to the corresponding distance, it’s easy to see why Daido claims to be King of the Hyperfocal Distance. Divide that focus distance in half and you see your DOF is very nice.

So, let’s say we are at f/5.6. Then if we focus the camera to 3.5′  we see that we have from 1.75′ to infinity in focus. Amazing!


I think another reason that the un-named Fuji X20 was given the name Daido is because he works the way I like in destroying the preconceptions I try to do with my Dreamcatcher Series. Of course we both fail because trying to destroy preconceptions just creates new preconceptions but…..BUTT! The files from Daido lend themselves to crazy processing that i like to do.

Anyway, tomorrow is another day and I’ll go to the streets with Andre’ because I miss him.  Please contact me for your free presets…..

shooter out………………..out of mind but out!…………………………

March 9th, 2014 ….. The Fuji XP1 & X20 Teaches A Cop How To See The XT1



Ok, you all know I’m a little strange, great guy but strange. Check this out…… I didn’t have much time but I did hit the streets and el train for a little bit. Nothing out of the ordinary yet….right. Well, my neighbor the cop…is a friend and to protect him and his family, he’s just “The Cop” across the street. I told ya’s he got the XT1 and some sweet lenses. Well, before I left the house he showed up and was telling me how he doesn’t like the 23mm and the 60mm Macro. Tsk, Tsk I said……So to add a little fuel to the fire I showed him Andre’….XP1, remember….ok…. well he says that it looks like an old school camera like me but he’ll grant my wish and look at it.

I told him to be careful because the XP1 has a very addictive OVF and once one looks thru it, well…the sins of the DSLR world become evident. He smiled and then put Andre’ to his eye…. (shhhhh…whiles he’s doing this I’m thinking that I sure would like his 23mm yup! Well, a few minutes pass and I show him how the finder switches to EVF.

As we packed his XT1 in the box for return, he asked what else he needed for the XP1. I told him to get a thumb grip and an ACMAXX for the screen. He doesn’t do eBay so he placed the return order right away. He’s exchanging for the XP1. So we sat back and drank a beer and I asked him in a very uninterested way what he was going to do with the lenses. He suggested that I should get the 23mm and he would just make sure that everything was tidy on the credit card. Well, ya know…I don’t really need that stupid lens but if you really don’t need it, we can make a deal. Yeah…..ya know, maybe I shouldn’t have showed him the 18mm or 21 Skopar and especially the 15mm Heliar.

03-14-0155Now my friend the Cop is actually a seasoned ex-pro shooter. He sold all of his Canon stuff and that’s where he got the moniey for the move to Fuji. So we are sitting and starting our second beer. He’s got Andre’ in his hand and I can see he understands the camera immediately…all the sudden….Tanya enters the room. She’s standing looking at me like a mother would do to a child, par for the course. She immediately reminds me that I am in complete violation of the Russian/American Alcohol Consumption Treaty Act of 2007. I am made aware of the penalties of such act. I told her I had Law Enforcement on the scene to monitor behavior patterns.  She told us both that there shall be no money exiting procedures from our bank account to the Cop’s. This includes the hidden photo account that she doesn’t know about but monitors.

03-14-0144So to keep peace in the home-front and as it turns out, both home-fronts…we decide to make some kind of a deal that goes un-noticed by the 2 female executive officers, otherwise named wives. So we know that we are not getting into beer #3 but if we are telligent menz, we can horse trade some kind of a deal to make each party happy.

The unnamed X20 is sitting on the table just minding it’s own business. It’s feeling out of sorts because the XT1 that won’t get a name because naming a camera is ludicrous according to the COP but is sitting next to the lucky one, Andre’ the XP1. He asked me what I use the little unnamed camera for. I stated, it’s in testing procedures for street, snap shot stuff but most importantly macro. Ahhhh, the garden…right? Yup, it does that better than any camera ever.

I also told him that the X20 was a natural FOV finder camera. I showed him how he could see the FOV of different lenses and one could test and find theirs with the little unnamed camera, the X20. So he asked to borrow the unnamed X20 for a little bit so he could test it out and make some decisions.

The unnamed X20 camera made all the photos in this post as part of preset development in the LightRoom Processing Department. I happen to be in charge of everything photographic because Tanya lets me be the CEO.

03-14-0153I know the Apple Store is around here somewhere….She is not amused….

So the unnamed X20 is on leave and Andre’ the XP1 is back to active duty. Somehow, I gotta make a deal for the Cop’s 23mm….all was going well until the the Cop knocked on y door…he said…yo Don…don’t you have an XE1?

That’s another story for another time…..

shooter out…………………………………………………………………………………………….


February 11th, 2014 ….. I Shoulda Carried The Black Fuji X-Pro1

02-14-0324So I was walking home from town. I had to drop off the Fuji X-E2 that the Inspired Eye was doing an observation of. You’ll see it over there after Olivier gets it up. Anyway, I’m freezing….my hands are really cold. Yeah, I have gloves but there are in my pocket. See, I was carrying the Ricoh GRD4 because it blends in with the snow really well because it’s white.

See all the snow in the photo…see the camera…nope, I told ya so. Well, there’s a reason I go to the VA Hospital and get to talk to the nice Doctors there. There’s a reason I have a Russian wife that explains why I’m doing things wrong all the time. It’s ok, I think that mostly they are right. So I thought to my self….“Self, we should use the White GRD4 because there’s a lot of snow around and the camera will blend in and be almost invisible.”  It does sound reasonable. My doctors would be happy that all the time spent updating the firmware in my head was worth it. The would say to all the medical staff…”We got streetshooter thinking and acting like a semi-normal person, look, he’s using a white camera out there with all the snow.”

They could all sip their fancy wine and Single Malt and smoke real nice Cuban cigars that they could get from immigrants trying to get into Florida but can’t afford to pay the graft so they get turned away and are used as Shark Food but dammit…them cigars aren’t wet…lets light em up.

Well with all this going around my head and being proud of my white camera making snaps in the snow I forgot….I’m wearing a BLACK COAT. See a white camera against a black coat….well, you ain’t out boy anymore. Send em’ back to the factory……

See that guy up there…yeah, the one in the photo….it’s 24f out…I’m freezin’ my butt off, everyone thinks I’m nutz cause I think my white camera will be hidden from view against my black coat…..what about that guy……..and you think I’m nutz?



January 27th, 2014 ….. Street Shooting with The Eye, Heart and Mind.

01-14-0498Regardless of how we think or even with what we try, we are polluted with the history of our very being. Don’t get me wrong….yeah you in the green jacket….be cool dude….the idea of personal history is a very cool concept if you know what it is and how to deal with it. When it comes to ex-wives, nah I can’t deal with it. When it comes to missing a camera I used many  years ago, I can kinda deal with it.

These are not the history we need to discover and work with on the streets. Say we are walking down Market Street….go on say it…..ok…..

Maybe I’ll just explain how I do things and then if you want to figure out your own stuff, ya might get an idea from this post. Ya might not but then it’s your issue, not mine.

I’m walking down Market Street and it’s kinda funky light. In one area about 20′ in front of me it’s shade….then 20′ more and we have that harsh winter sun, ya know the kind that doesn’t even add warmth. So the issue of light has to be resolved. Of course light is what makes the exposure reading from the meter in the camera tell us what to adjust to get the photo recorded in proper exposure. Well, technically that’s kinda what happens but not for real street shooters.

See, street shooters are very fast in seeing because every one that has ever been borne or that will be borne is working at a super higher rate of consciousness then the people walking the streets without a camera. See, it’s because they, the camera toting people known as street shooters are in touch with their Eye, Heart & Mind.

A couple of pointers here. I use Auto ISO because I shoot in Manual Mode. This means I set the shutter speed and the aperture that I want and I trust my camera to set the proper ISO. Why do I trust the camera to do this and to do it well. Because I test my camera and the way it thinks. You can change the way a camera works but you can’t change the way it thinks. 01-14-0509So what I am getting at is simply difficult. When we SEE something we want to make a photo of, at that point, there can be absolutely no intrusion from the camera. So we would get the camera at the ready and the exposure WE want is already set and the CAMERA will make the exposure work. If the photo works, it’s because we were in the EHM zone of photo awareness. If the photo doesn’t work, it’s because we were distracted by something and hopefully it’s not the camera.

01-14-0510Maybe for the casual shooter this stuff sounds boring and or to deep for what it is. For the serious shooter, especially on the streets….it’s just the beginning of understanding the journey and finding one’s way on the street.

I’ll do more tomorrow….. Make sure to grab a copy of the Inspired Eye Magazine….it’s a great issue.


January 23rd, 2014 ….. A Muse, a Mentor and it’s Freakin’ Cold Out but the Fuji XP1 makes it WARM!

01-14-0445See that Kewl Kat…that’s Barsik. He’s not really cool at this moment, he’s warm. He’s my main Muse and when it comes to relaxing…he’s my Mentor. So I went upstairs and grabbed my XP1 and put the 35mm 1.4 on it. I came down and put the camera on the table and sipped some more Green Tea. Barsik looked at me with a grin. He knows when I want to make photos….like always.  See, cats are easy to work with cause they just sit and try not to move. Barsik of course has a sense of humor and that is flavored heavily with a Russian taste. He will sit still until just before the shutter gets to release…..then right at that fraction of a second….he moves and sometimes changes position all together.

I know and appreciate the fact that he’s teaching me patience, framing, improvising at the spur of a moment….I get all that, I really do…what I don’t get is a good photo. Cats will only provide a good photo if an agreement is made for exchange. Food, brushing, lap holding, any number of things will do but it’s gonna be something or….no photos for you!

The above shot was a sneak attack and I used all my military training to sneak the shot. Luckily the XP1 has a good screen and even at odd angles, you can see and make the shot. I knew I had him…it was a sweet feeling, I mean I got the Barsik and he didn’t know…..Proud I was and happy with my trusty camera……then I looked at the file in LightRoom…..sure enuff…..sucker got his eye cracked open. Sheeeesh….just when ya think ya got it down……..!


01-14-0451I’m outside now, well not really now but then. This is my favorite Rose. We planted it this year and it did ok. I made many lovely photos of it and it’s friends all around the garden. See that last remains of the last rose just laying there all alone? Well that’s the hope of next season. It’s my favorite plant outside and we have a lot. This rose for me, especially at this time in these conditions is what survival and diligence is all about. I look at this rose every day and I get a lift to just move on and not be deterred from progress.

The temperature at exposure time was: 4F or -15.5C.  Now this is Philadelphia and know for the City of Brotherly Love. Well, you can bet there’s a lot of lovin’ going just to stay warm. I wanted to make a few photos just because I could and I owe it to all this people, friends, shooters etc in Australia that are sweating it out….Tsk Tsk whatever shall they do…….

01-14-0455This is my bench in the back of the garden. It’s the safe spot for me when Tanya gets pissed off and I have to sit like a bad school boy. I actually don’t mind it at all. It provides  a safe haven away from the ruckus in the neighborhood. Well, the snow likes the bench also. I asked it….Snow, when will you get the hell off my bench? Snow replied, it’s cold out and I have more snow friends coming in a few days. so get used to it.

I asked the bench,,,,,Bench, are you cold? The bench said to me….yo…I’m made of cement, I ain’t go no mouth, I gotz no ears…..what the hell are you doing talking to me stupid? I thought for a moment and decided that there exist no logical answer to this riddle. I also knew that if I mention this conversation to my Dr, I’ll get sent back to the factory.

So I just decided to mark the moment and make a photo. The XP1 turns me on more and more day after day. I’m hard on a camera. No I don’t mean banging it around….I mean application. I make all kinds of photos and if I find something the camera won’t or can’t do…..someone else gets to try. The Fuji XP1 so far has proven the most capable camera I have used since the start of the digital revolution. I won’t name names like Canon, Nikon, Leica, Blad, Olympus, Panasonic etc…..just know that if I’m still using a camera after a good period…..it’s a winner.

What makes me different than anyone else? I will not tolerate the slightest intrusion on my process at anytime whatsoever! I do not compromise with cameras.

Have a safe good day and night……

shooter out……………………………………….