Tag Archives: Leica M

May 18th, 2018 Rain Dancing With Walker the Fuji X-Pro2 … The 2 Button Rule For Street

There is a camera strap called the ARTISAN AND ARTIST ACAM-E25R. I use it with some cameras and especially Walker the Fuji X-Pro2. Great strap and great camera. The thing is, the 2 together have a sense of humor. Oh yeah, they do. See, I have Walker on the strap around my neck. It’s raining out and Walker is a trooper for the bad weather. So we be waking and a shooting and then all the sudden, I look at the screen and it’s in multiple shot mode. This is a post coffee incident. So the freak out point is reached quickly. I’m panting and losing my cool, don’t have much to start with but what I have is boiling over. I like my screen to be b&W. I’ll explain some reasons later but Walker and the un named camera strap have had another laff because i see the screen is in color and also I’m shooting in jpeg because the camera is now in multiple-exposure mode.

Now we all know that a camera strap can’t really talk to us but surely can communicate. You ever have a neck ache or shoulder ache from a camera on a strap? Well, that ache and pressure is from the strap, not the camera. If you communicate with things other than living matter, you know that the strap is saying…. damn dude, this camera is heavy and I’m not digging to have to have it on me. So, because you think less of me because I’m a strap, I’m gonna pass along some pain to you. See that guy down there at the end of your arm?   He’s the hand guy and he can hold your camera named or unnamed with or without a strap. Do it and I’ll stop hurting your dumb ass.

Anyway, back to the issue at hand ummm, errrr  issue hanging around. See, the buttons on the back of Walker the Fuji X-Pro2  will change as you walk or whatever. It doesn’t take much of a press to get a nice intrusion in the groove of working.  TWO THINGS THAT ARE A MUST DO WITH THE FUJI CAMERAS.

First, set the camera up the way you want to work. Then set the AF box where you want it. Ok, good….now carefully and paying full attention to the screen….press the joystick in straight and then you will see it is locked in position. The AF box will not move against your side or chest whatever. Press again and it releases the lock.

Second, press and hold the OK button until you see the LOCK on the screen.  Now most buttons with a sense of humor are locked.  The ones that are nice don’t need the lock so you can still access them. You can work without much aggrevation. Press and hold the OK button again and the UNLOCK is shown.

This info is available all over by many photographers. I post this because most here are shooters and have no time to get technical with cameras. They just want to work. (pre button lock experience) Walker decided to change my vision from B&W to Color. I did not ask him to do this. I think he felt I needed to analyze my intent. Oh, before I go any further, I have been known as a Camera Whisperer for some time. How else do ya’s think I can name my cameras and talk with them? Walker is not only one of my partners in photography, he’s also one of my patients and I his.

I’m standing on 10th Street and Market and just breathing. See, Walker decided I need to do color and he changed himself to make me do and see color. I see the screen in color and, well decided, maybe he’s right. Besides, I just wanted to work and knew I could have a chat with him when we got home.

station break but not commercial……. Walker and many cameras can make me think about what I’m doing, how I’m doing it and why I’m doing it. That’s exciting, or is it? Andre’ the Leica M240 is the opposite. I can take him out day after day and never ever see any changes on the camera. If i make a change, ok but Andre’ never ever does, or does he? Perhaps Andre the Leica M240 makes the changes in the most important manner. They seemingly go unnoticed.

See, the Inverse square law, (invented by my great great grandfather, cobble street shooter) says that more is less and less is more. So, he noticed that the digital cameras of the time, I think 1492 cause he documented the arrival of Columbus, had so many features that he needed to think less cause the camera did more. He met a young lad named Oscak Barnack and asked him, Oscar, can you make a camera with less functions that need to be changed and just let the camera work with the HEART of the shooter and not just the mind.

So, Oscar thought what a novel idea and set forth to make a camera to Cobble Street Shooters ideas. Oscar made the camera. No, not just a camera. He made a camera that for all time would place the heart of the shooter in the foreground and always make sure that the process of vision and feeling would override every other intrusion.


The reason that this story is not widely known is because even tho my Great Great Grandfather had great cameras, there was no film invented yet or sd cards. Unfortunately, we dont’t have any records of his work but he sure enough inspired Leica.

Little know tale….. I need to write more about the idea and application of Color vs B&W and i will start that post now and send it before the weekend is over.

April 8th, 2018 … The Myth of Cameras and Other Things

Many say that any good shooter can get a great photo with any came

ra. That is the absolute truth. It’s also not the only truth. There are other truths to uncover and reasons for those truths.

As photographers, we need to have an underestanding of what our camera is. I name my cameras because I can and because I see a shrink on a regular basis. The idea for me is that the name of my camera is a metaphor for my entire process of photography. But what role does the camera really play?

The camera is a translator of light. I will not get into the controls as we all know and use them. The camera has another purpose and that is to inspire. As a translator, the camera brings to the sensor, the light from the scene. But is that all? What about emotional impact, how about the esthetic or even the graphical content? Can and does the camera capture those elements and more? How exactly does that even happen? I gotta tellyaalls, all my life I have sought and found questions. I love questions but I don’t really seek answers. Let’s assume that life is a journey of self discovery. So, while you will find many questions and should take them on one at a time. That allows us to find and process more than one answer to any given question.

I actually don’t want a real answer to anything, except what time dinner is. The question is important and the journey to find an answer is life and the answer, while it may annswer the question, it can’t ever be complete.

So, hopefully you follow me here and see what it means to photography and to your time above ground. I take Mom the Ricoh GRII out and I am intoxicated. I am in a zone that happens on first touch with the camera and actually last for a looooong time.  It makes myhand float like some kinda vessel and I just watch the screen as we make the frame. Snap focus and that’s it. It’s all about seeing and feeling.

The Fuji X-Pro2 is named Walker after Walker Evans.  The camera has a very professional feel to it. Really, it’s an amazing camera cause even in the rain or snow, it does what ya want a camera to do in adverse conditions as well as good conditions.  It’s nice to have interchangeable lenses. I use the EVF mostly.  Just let me get the meat going….. just a min, trust me, I’m not lost.

The Leica M240. Gotta tell ya, I have used Leica’s  the better part of 48 years. That doesn’t make it right, it just means a long time running. I’m not even gonna push the Leica or any other camera. You have your own and good.

Ok, we have the pc and the software that takes care of the processing. It’s basically a constant.  We have the scenes out there that we work and it’s a inconsistant constant.  I was told by some mentors and Isee now that many people teach, see something as if it was the first time your seeing it. Well, it doesn’t mean work a street corner and next time jump from a roof so you can see it for the first time the next time. I have tried this many times and failed. My uncle Birney told me many years ago, that it means you have a poisened mind. So, I call that exercise bullcrap. It’s impossible or is it? Well, not totally either way.

So, there always is a common denominator in life but that’s not always what we need. Sometimes we need to cut the edge with a new way of thinking. So, if we have the pc and processing running and we have our streets (anything you call subject)….working, how do we change our way of thinking and seeing?

Enter the camera. If you let your camera be your friend instead of a tool, you will find that your synergysm with your camera, will start to awaken the interior thoughts and feelings that you can find out there and get into your photos. some of the shooters I mentor insist that the camera is a tool and that they command it’s use.  It makes me sad when I come across someone that thinks this way. I mean, it’s like there’s no attachment and kinda feeling like the master of their universe. So sad. I often wonder how they are with people and family.

Then there are those that come and start off feeling like the master of their world and after some time and some chatting, things start to change. Usually a slow process but what’s interesting….we share photos on Saturday Breakfast, and I can see the progression in the work as they become more human with a camera. There is a definite visual progression that becomes obvious to all. On the other hand, my friends that insist on having a tool as a camera, usually but not always, the work is at a stagnant point. That’s why we meet anyway so it’s ok.

I think for most humans, not politicians or lawyers etc, the compass should be our guide. So, as you walk the streets with your camera, and seek your photos, your camera is the conector between you and your lifes work and your images. It’s this way for everyone, like it or believe it or not. If this is truth and it is Gospel as photopgraphers should believe, how is it possible to disrespect photography and Mother Light by having your camera be a tool? Oh my, how can one disrespect themselves that way? Look, I’m old enough to realize that there are many ways to approach things. That’s not the issue. The issue is, that I express myself and hang my um…. on the wall. You may or may not agree but you know where I stand. When I was younger and totally engrossed with photography, I loved it all, every single part.’ I don’t love it anymore, I LIVE it.

I go out to shoot almost daily. I walk my miles and make photos, not many but enoough to keep me above ground. I am connected and my camera helps me feel at one. I get home and shelf the camera and I start to feel lost. I start almost immediately missing my work and my life.

Be Blessed everyone and I hope you find the light to make you excited and maybe name your camera.


March 27th, 2018 … The Streets … Casual Encounters

Try as I may, I can never figure out how the visual weather effects my work. I get all excited and have a plan and location to work and the minute I get on the bus, I can’t remember my name. Another good reason to name your camera and keep it as a friend. Here’s something that happened a few weeks ago.

I had 9 people in a Saturday morning lecture. Suzanne and Polly and 7 others. They start passing prints around so we all can see what’s going on. Then Brant and that’s his name, starts sitting back in the chair, taking deep breaths and says the remark that puts rocket fuel up my butt. “I’ve seen that a 1000 times.” He looks at some more prints and makes remarks like the previous and like, “you have a good eye, you just can’t see with it.” Then Suzanne hands him some prints and he glances to me as he starts looking at her prints.

So Brant starts making commments and again states, “I’ve seen this 1000 times.” Suzanna kicks my leg under the table to come to her defense but I was anyway without the reminder. So I ask the group to turn the prints upside down and to eliminatte distractions so we can chat. So I ask a question to Brant.

Brant, do you have any books around. Have you ever seen books in a store, a shelf, a library or anyplace? He looks at me in his A-Typical smug fashion. Of course Don, I’m not stupid, so what? Books vary in in size, thickness, color, covers, paper, pages and may other things. All these things add in to make a book exciting and beautiful and interesting but…..

The essence, the heart and soul of a book is the words. The words are the lifeblood of books. It’s what makes the same catalyst become singularly unique.

So maybe you have 1000’s of books, byt each is unique because of content. Photos work the same way and so does many things in life. People are the exact same. Photos generally are on paper of a size and stock from a box from a mill that makes it. What makes a photo unique is the single simple fact that the photographer made it. Looking at photos or words is the exact same thing. The difference is in the syntax of the language.

Photography, especially street is about chance encounters. We travel around, and seem to click from time to time and find a photo or the photo finds us. The encounter is what makes our single breath at the moment of realization and exposure totally unique. Brant, if you placed your camera on a tripod and made 1000 photos without changing position, no two would ever be the same. It’s just like books, all have similar appearance and construction but no 2 are ever the same. This in fact is true with an edition. If you look closely, there are things that make them different. This is not about the details but the obvious.


So the conversation goes around for a bit and Brant says to me. Don. that’s all just obvious and no need to lecture about that.

I take a breath and said…. Brant, you know why you don’t have a boyfriend, because you see everyone as if you’ve seen them 1000s times and you never see the heart that makes anyone unique.

Be blessed everyone …. shooter out……

January 23rd, 2018 … Finding the Un-lost … or … (put your title here)

….. don’t start that crap. It’s real easy to go out there and look for new places to work. It’s stimulating and exciting for sure. It’s like everything is seducing your senses and all you can do is see the magic in front of you. We are like virgins in front of Mother Light. Standing proud and tuned into the oneness of it all. The photos come to us as we become more and more aware of the newness of seeing and feeling. The camera, (you do name your camera, don’t you) ready to make the exposures just as perfect and articulate as can be.

Your a street shooter, there ain’t nothing better in the world. After a walk around, you breathe deep knowing that there, there on the card in the camera, lives the images you saw. made and are excited about to bring to life. Maybe Frankenstein felt this way making his creation come to life. You did it, be proud of yourself, you made photos of the easy side of the street.

What shooter? You best explain yerself old man. What’s this easy side of the street? Well, we all have mental blocks to deal with. Everyone. Maybe you don’t like to address it, or allow others to know you have a block, or maybe be in denial, but we all fall to the cutting edge of the executioner of our creative self.

I remember being 13yo and working with my Grandfather doing hardwood floors. We would come home for lunch and pop would sit in his big chair with 2 arms so he could rest. I’d sit across from him on the sofa and pop would say as he watched television, look at this Donald, it’s like being in Hawaii and in 10 min we will be in Japan, and never have too leave the chair.  Now I’m 68 and I often wonder what I would have done in Hawaii, which I have been too, and Japan and a number of other places that I visit thru other shooters and television etc. I often wondered if I would have made a great body of work and been happy enough to die for.

Then, my mind wakes up and my feelings stir and that itch in my eye gets going and my finger longs for Andre’ or on other other family members…… to be close by. My feet kinda vibrate, it’s not the tremors but the energy that is building. I sit resisting the call and trying to stop myself from succumbing to the call of the streets. My heart rate raises some and my breathing is getting rapid. My thoughts of Hawaii and Japan leave my mind. I start to get peace and tranquility in the knowledge that soon, in just a little while, the exhaust of the traffic, the junkies and the working people, the young men walking around talking together, the woman, seemingly frustrated and inside abused somehow, still radiate the beauty Mother Nature has instilled in them. The homeless that most know me by now as I share what funds I have so we all can eat a little. They trust me because I respect them and don’t care if they respect me.

I am home on the streets. I am home in Philly. I am a tourist thru life, we all are tourist thru life. No one gets a permanent visa. I make photos because otherwise I’d be watching the world go by and not even know I was a part of it.

I admire tourist. They come to Philly and most follow the beaten path set before them for many decades. They find the photos that keeps the memory alive for them when they leave and move on.

I wonder how many photos have been made of the Liberty Bell. I wonder how many variations on a theme there is. I wonder how it’s possible to think that anyplace but home could be better to live and work. Even if you move, in time the new place becomes home.

I guess in my own silly way, I wear ruby slippers. When I go to work, I just have to tap them 3xs and say,

There’s no place like home, There’s no place like home, There’s no place like home, ……….. it’s not about saying it, it’s about living it with a camera in my hand.





























January 2nd, 2018 … The Journey To The Land of Inspiration … Thanks to Marie Laigneau

Happy New Years everyone, may you be blessed and have good light.

It started around mid December last. I was kinda just going along but not really inspired and not really caring either. The weather is changing and it’s bitter cold. I hate the cold but love to work in it. Go figure, My elder friends call this an elder moment. That’s a good excuse as any and I seek not to improve that. Anyway, when I get this winter doldrum going, even in warm weather, I kinda have a bug up my butt.  That’s the get your lazy ass out and go work bug.  So the issue is, not that I am aware that I am having a dry season but that I can’t dock in the slip of complacency. The boat of fruitful, emotional, and productive travels, will not rest nor will it ever seek port at the island of lazy and discontent.

So the journey for personal inspiration was under way. I suppose youse alls noticed my absence. I have been on a journey with no destination or goals. I know enough at my age to realize that any journey really is within oneself. I traveled thru the land of lost creativity, the land of sorrows of forgotten images. As I moved forward on my journey for inspiration, I came across the vallet of tears. Here, in the valley, the cliffs on either side are covered with the photos that have escaped the moment of capture. I saw a shadow of Andre’ the Leica M240 in between the boulders. I felt sad. He was just there with no love, no use and he cried out to me….”Shooter, we all love you, we all miss you”..and he faded into the unknown. I needed the guidance and the sheer strength of heart of Atreyu….but alas, he was busy fighting the nothing. I thought I was on my own.

I ventured into the library of forgotten thoughts. It had been a sourse of nourishment for my heart and soul for decades. I felt empty and untrusting of what could be.  I sat back and thought about how to solve the riddle of inpriration. I started to look at the Inspired Eye magizines. See. as co-publisher of the mag, I have every issue. Yes, it’s made to inspire and it was doing that with me.

Now get this straight. It matters not where your inspiration comes from, just that you recognize it and activate it. I saw an interview that I did with a woman shooter. I realized she was my….

Childlike Empress (Moon Child). There was a time when this woman was unjustly juudged by some shooters. I was enraged and came to her defense immediately. This was some time ago. I am not saying she is a hero of mine just a woman that makes photos I relate to. In fact, at this time I related to her work more than my own. That’s inspiration. Her name is and I hope she doesn’t get upset with me is Marie Laigneau marielaigneau.com The nice thing about being old is that I am not uptight about giving credit to others. Anyway, I saw some recent photos she made and the there was one like a selfie with her Leica in the reflection. Don’t ask wy but all the sudden, I felt a weight lifted that was bearing down on me for weeks.


The point is that regardless of what we feel or believe, we really are not alone. In this time of isolation and dispair, Marie came to my rescue and she never even knew. We need to keep an open mind, heart and eye so that we continue to evolve as humans with a camera. We all, well we all that are real with things have down times. I even teach this in my private workshops. I find it delicious that a person I never really met and have had little web contact with can throw a life raft to me in the sea of sorrows and lost inspiration and not even know she did it. That is poetry of living.

So I thank you all for being here and wish everyone a Blessed Happy New Year. Marie, maybe you will never know how you saved me but I wish you all the best and a safe journey thru your life.

Take care my friends and if you get lost or bored or even tired, someplace is your inspiration and you need not go to far to find it.

November 17th, 207 … The Memory of Being

Leica M240 35mm Zeiss

………what about being in the moment? Is it really a moment? Is it just ONE moment and then it’s over? Maybe it’s a series of moments and then it’s not a moment at all. Perhaps as photographers, we really should not live in the moment but just have the memory of it. Maybe what’s really important is not the moment at all but the memory of it. Surely the memory will outlive the event of the moment. No matter if it’s The Decisive Moment or just a regular non specific moment.

The important thing is not the moment but being in the moment. Maybe that’s not right either and I personally believe that the memory of being is all that matters in any situation. The memory of being is all that remains after a breath passes.

Photographers are possessed with being in the moment and capturing an image that reflects the memory of the experience of that moment. I am not convinced that I succeed in that mission. I fail because I make photos that are more of a personal outlook to me then the actual living breathing moment.

Years ago I embarked on a body of work about American Artist. I used an 8×10 Deardorff named Margaret after my exes mother’s name. I made countless photos of many famous people. It was a humbling experience to say the least. As I moved along the journey, I started to realize that death was my partner on this project. Most of the artist were much older than me.  As I released the shutter, I felt that being there was a special emotional moment that I wanted to cherish forever. That set the framework for all the photos. I wanted a descriptive living document of all the ones I photographed.

I wanted the families and friends and collectors of these people to have THE image of that particular artist. I’m not saying I ever succeeded in anything but creating a false representation of a reality, that suggest to me or the viewer that I was there and this is what I saw.

So the memory of being introduces an element at the moment of release that I can’t get past. That element is, being aware of being in the moment, or being aware of making the memory of the moment. Perhaps the 2 live side by side and only some people even care about it.

I write these things as observations that have captured me along the way. You may or may not find worth in it but I will continue just as I will continue making photos.

Be blessed all………end transmission…………..

November 3rd, 2017 … Motivation vs Satisfaction … The Battle to Sustain the Self

The idea of the Unique photo came up in my last post. A rehash; the photo that makes you sing and that you feel is the best you get. This is a great experience, or is it? I will make a scenario and feel free to change the numbers as you see fit. Digital shooters normally make many exposures. Let’s say that a shooter makes 100 exposures. Out of the 100, there is 1 unique image. I’ll tell ya this, that’s a great percentage rate of Unique images. In real world, I doubt anyone gets close to this.

So what does this mean? Well, I believe the Inverse Square Law is applied here. I don’t exactly know how but maybe as we go along, it will reveal it self. Look,we are all in the same boat. We strive for that unique image because it gets liked and loved by the many. We feel a satisfaction that is stimulating and that drives us to continue. We have grasped the brass ring and feel that all that we were and all that we are will now continue on the Path of the Unique Image.

Well, that’s nice and worthy but what about all the ones left behind. If we are using 1/100 = Unique, what then of the 99/100 left behind? If the 1 Unique drives us and gives us energy and motivates us, what do the 99 others do? (ISL may apply, you decide) Do the 99 not give satisfaction even if in a different way? Do they motivate us in a way that maybe we aren’t sure of? Well, I believe that the 99 are just as important as the 1, (not talking USA politics)…

The 99 are not strangers to us. The 99 help to direct to the 1 because if we understand our work, they are a clear road map to the 1. All important decisions about gear, processing and everything will be handled by the 99. If we dismiss the importance of the 99 and only respect the 1, well soon there will be a loss in our light. See, the masses of images that we acquire and continue to make, are all that we are as a person.

I remember at the Museum, Ding pulled out a few boxes of Paul Strands work. He trusted me to be ok holding the photos because he taught me to di it proper. We put a box on a table and started going thru it. My heart raced as I went thru the photos. I could feel Paul standing behind me as I gazed upon his work. His existence was there at my fingertips. Ding said, the Curators did a splendid job here. After a minute I came up for air and turned to Ding, I asked what do you mean the Curators. Paul selected the photos right? Ding said, doesn’t really work that way. Paul makes the photos Ns the Curators will select the photos they want for the collection. We of course have the majority of his work. Then Ding told me to open this box that was around 11×14″. I opened it and the air from it was released and I breathed it in.

I started going thru the collection and there were photos of his garden, friends, Hazel and some from his ex-wives. Many photos came to light and I was totally absorbed. Ding said, these are the photos Paul made for himself. The ones that didn’t get selected. I felt a sense of well being. I mean I felt that maybe the Wizard was shown to me in actual light.

What this boils down to is this. When you look at someone’s work you admire, remember that there are more photos that are not seen than those that are seen. Chances are that a curator or editor has helped in the selection of what your seeing. It’s all good and it works this way. Perhaps we need not cut ourselves to pieces by comparing our work to another. Maybe we should seek the unique and compare it to our own work. That’s the best way to have sustainability and to manage to love our work and ourselves. We are all unique and if you learn to love your mundane, then maybe your unique photos will come to light.

…………………………………………….end transmission……………………………..

October 31st, 2017 … The Dreamcatcher … Recipricating Energy

Andre’ the Leica M240 and i was out on Market Street. We were walking at a nice comfy slow pace for 2 old guys. Actually I’m older than Andre’ but his lineage predated me so, we are equal. One should always be equal with their camera. One should always be equal with their process. No matter how hard one tries one will never be equal with life.  What does this mean? I’ve talked about stance before. Stance is how you are perceived by the world. What you do and how you do it effects your stance.

Well everyone on the planet has a stance. For shooters the stance is crucial to making photos. It’s not just about how you work your stance but also just as important… how the world and the people in the Frame work their stance. and how you perceive that. Of course this is all reality based. I mean that mostly things are tangible and thue we can accept them or not. Even if not, we can grasp what we not accept.

What about things not tangible. Things that exist but maybe in a different state of being. How about thoughts? What dimension are thoughts? So the way I see it is, thoughts, emotions, feelings all manage to effect our stance. Our stance has a direct relation on what and how we make photos. It has the innate ability to conjure up dreams. These dreams will flow into your thoughts. Your thoughts will seek the affirmation of being  real by trying to find photos.


When you find your photos they may become a catalyst  to create thoughts  and those thoughts can trigger dreams. This is an example of the photographers concept of Reciprocal Energy.

Anyway, Andre the Leica M240 and I were out making photos. I mentioned this at the start of the post. For as long as I can remember, I have been drawn to isolation, loneliness, detachment  and other emotions similar to these. I suppose that I am seeking my self out there with my camera. I think I find pieces of me in the photos I make. Maybe the photos are more me then I care to admit. This is of course a very personal situation and I understand the position this places me with my work. I kinda think you, yeah YOU the one reading this has a similar situation.


So I look at my photos and many are the catalyst for my Dreamcatcher work.  When I sleep, which is never long, I may see these photos in my minds eye. It’s better than the nightmares that usually haunt my mind. When I wake, perhaps when I’m out working, the thoughts from the dreams manifest in my vision and I seek to satisfy those thoughts.

The energy a photographer acquires and uses is the driving force of his/her vision. Un-Photographers walk around and see things and most does not penetrate the mind or heart. Photographers see things and make photos of things. When the mind processes these images, they become a part of your photographic value system. You can not escape this reciprocal energy. Fight it as hard as you may and you will lose every time. These thoughts are what make you and your work unique in the universe of photography. They give birth to your photos. They keep driving you to find the next photo. They bless you with a photo that sings a song that Mother Light smiles upon. They don’t happen very often. We don’t want them to anyway. They would dilute themselves into excellent mundane photos.

The beauty of the Mundane is that it makes contrast to the excellence of the Unique. They say and I damn sure don’t know who they are but I assume they are someone……that the Unique photo is what keeps you driving and working hard to find you next photo. It is supposed to be the driving force. Well, I don’t feel that way. I am a lifer in photographer. I have learned that what drives me is not the Unique photo but the entire process of working. I am not now nor ever was a heavy shooter. I go out and usually make around 20-30 frames. I do this 3-5xs a week for over 50 years.

I love my cameras, I name them. I love the entire process of photography. I love the reciprocal energy that drives me. I get my share of unique photos and even some that sell to my collectors and galleries etc. I LIVE making photos. They are all my children and I am the origin of my work.

I have more thoughts and will post in a day or so…….. be blessed everyone and maybe once in a while, take note of what your doing and fall in love with it.

October 20th, 2017 … The Workflow Mistake and the Seeing Color Again Post

Ok, so I been on Lightroom since the beta. I been on DNG since Creative Cloud was released and I was there in NYC when they announced it. Yes I am pointing out that  I have experience in the processing and workflow.

Well I was on a walk-a-bout with Andre the Leica M. I’m seeing the fall light and that activates the color sensor in my brain. I decide to go with it and just breathe in the cool fall air and spend some time with Andre. Ya know how most cameras make a great JPEG file and it’s always nicer thank the Raw file? Well the Leica’s don’t do that. Oh’ they make nice JPEGs but the DNG files are just totally intoxicating. Why do I mention this…………………………………………………………..>

<…………………………………………………………….. We headed home and I got LightRoom loaded and ready. I take the card out of Andre and slip it in the card reader in the PC. LR does it’s thing and the files are imported to the catalog. So now it’s like film processing and seeing the negs, for me that’s what it’s like. I see the photo above, the 1st one here, and I start to run presets because I want to make sure if I use the Leica DNG’s, I am ready to go. The files are so workable that I start to mess around with the image and get excited how things are working.

Then I decide to do that side by side comparison thing. (I never do Raw + JPEG, just Raw only but this time I wanted to do color comparisons so I have JPEGS.)

I load the JPEG on the left and the Raw on the right. Well, I see that the DNG does not need much work if anything but I like to experiment. Well, I pull the card from the pc and put it back in Andre and format the card. One step done. then I decide to shut down and I click the left photo which is the JPEG and delete….LR ask if I want to remove or delete…. kill that sucker, delete it.

At 68 yo I still have a sense of humor with the world. When I do something wrong and or  stupid, in a few minutes or so I realize I messed up. I click that photo and hit delete but LR deletes the DNG file. It’s one of those highlight issues. You can’t always see it. So I realize the DNG is gone. I close LR but quick exit so I can do other things. Eureka! I open LR again and then I get this kinds burping on the brain and I need a toilet quickly. Why you asked? Because the last import is POOF’D. I didn’t back it up.

Sandisk Disk Rescue didn’t work. It’s a Sandisk card and the new 300mp/s dude. So I give up and surrender  but fo 68 seconds. I search the web and find many programs that claim to recover things. I try some and this sickening feeling is growing.There are cost involved. I see from $69.95 – over $99.00 USD.

I see this site that has a card recovery program and I try the demo. Man, all the photos are there. I am amazed. I decide if it’s under a Hundred bucks, I’ll get it. I do this stupid stuff not often but this is a security blanket. The Card Recovery program says I can buy it to get the files. Well. I clock buy and it’s $39.99 USD. So I sit back like a kid and the click save and sure enough the program puts all the photos in a folder.

I am wiggling and squirming and almost giggling with joy. I open LR and import the photos and it was all there. I sat back and thought that this little program saved me a lot of grief. I didn’t tell Andre’ the Leica M about this but I think he will be ok with it.

I guess the point is, one is never too old to learn or mess up. There is always a solution. The real point for me that I feel is the take away is….I wanted to experiment. I did and actually, this entire episode has been an experiment.

I have taught countless people things about photography. I know some will be reading this and I will no doubt get messages…..

“shooter, how many times I tell you don’t format the card till your all done”?

Have a good weekend alls………………





October 17h, 2017 … Flashback … Hue Vietnam … Losing My Religion

….. “Jingles, get your ass out of there and fall in.” See, I been here long enough to know I ain’t got much humanity left in me but dang it, I’m a photographer. We are humping thru what’s supposed to be friendly area and not have to sweat too much about ambush or fire fight or mortars. So they say. We get near these statues of Buddha and other spiritual beings. I am like in awe of this. My eyes wander all over and I pull the Leica and start making photos. Yes, your right. I was making photos back then and not taking them.  I could feel the energy from Buddha and it’s like he was crying. I lowered my head and my heart took over. Not supposed to do that, supposed to be a grunt. Well, I found that Grunts have more heart than any living being. I looked up at Buddha and I felt a weight being lifted. No, it was Hentz taking 60 rounds from my sack. Well, that’s a poor excuse but at this precise moment in life and my time, I felt a kind of spiritual awakening.

I was born Jewish and did the Bar Mitzva and went to Hebrew school. I wanted to be a good guy with a strong religious belief.

Anyway, back to Hue. As I stood in front of Buddha I knew that I had lost my religion. I felt like in order for me to regain my humanity, I would need to abandon many things I learned. I would need to stand in front of THE LORD and and be accountable for my life and actions. (what’s this got to do with photography Shooter?…relax)

I could feel the cold steel of my M-16 on my shoulder. Then all the sudden, these rays of light passed by Buddha and fell upon me. I looked at my Leica and felt my rifle and as the light shinned upon me, I felt like I wasn’t lost anymore. I wasn’t just lost in Nam, I was lost in life. The light that shinned on me was from Mother Light. I could feel the warmth of my Leica. I felt like I was being born again and that a religion was being born from within me and I understood. I knew standing in front of Buddha that he had blessed me with the love that photography would provide all my life. I had abandoned what I thought was Holy and let myself be born to a belief that was in me since I was born.

I wish I could say that I made all this stuff up and that I was a good writer. Bill tells me I am but the thing is, I write what’s coming from my heart. It is something I can never get used to. I turned 21 in Nam and turned 68 on the 8th of Oct. All this time these things have lived inside me. They never went to sleep permanently. Some say that life is but a dream. For me and countless other vets, Nam is life and we live it every moment of our existence. Reality that I am a part of  in the here and now, that’s not life to me. That’s the Dream.

Photography still allows me to make photos of the Dream I am in. My camera’s name is Andre’, together we are the Dream Catcher.