A lot happens in a month

For starters while perusing through the thousands of photos I have taken I stumbled upon this choice shot taken of Alcatraz prison from my balcony aboard the Royal Caribbean Mariner of the Seas.

Spooky photo of Alcatraz with no effects

Spooky photo of Alcatraz with no effects

I have more shots but nothing this dramatic.

Paying to access beauty

Now we all know that as photographers we have to jump through hoops and hurdles to get the right shot. We have to wait numerous cycles for the breeze to unfurl a flag just right or for the child’s eye’s to give that “plugged in and lit up” look.

Sometimes, we have to sign forms stating that we know we’re walking into a dangerous area and that we won’t sue the owner of the facility/property if we get hurt. Well it’s become that time of year in Texas where wildflower shots are readily available.

There are hundreds of free places to get these shots…like IH10 just outside of Seguin on the way to Houston. There are tons of locations around San Antonio too. But the places that I want to hit are the places that are forbidden unless you have the wallet for it.

Take for instance, the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin. It’s a gorgeous place filled with the beauty of wildflowers year round. They charge you to access the facility if you want to look but if you pack a camera, look out. You can be slapped with an $100/day camera fee.

There is a new canyon at Canyon Lake and it has some awesome views as well. If you want to walk down that trail, you have to hire a guide and you have to also pay a fee. Combined, it can also run you about $100 and that includes LIMITED access to the area.

So please take this warning. If you are going to a favorite location and plan on taking your camera to capture some of the beauty, you better pack your credit card or a lockbox for your camera because cash strapped facilities are looking for new and better ways to generate revenue and our love of nature’s raw beauty and power is going to cost us.

A digital photographer has lots of help today

A podcast is a simple audio or sometimes video file that provides you with any of a long list of items that can be used to teach you different languages, math, science, and even digital photography.

Some of the best guides and tutorials are podcasts. 

Here are some of them that I listen to:

The main advantage of these podcast tutorials is that you can run them on your iPod or media player while you sit at your PC or in the field. 

If you know of any others, please let me know and I can add this to the list.

There’s nothing like high school–

So I made the dumb move of joining Facebook. People I don’t even know are clamoring to be my friend. Who are some of these people?

Anyhow, an old friend from high school showed me my alma mater’s group in there and like a dummy I joined them. Why did I do that?

These are good people that bring out the absolute worst in me. I go from being the intellectual and overly intelligent person that I am normally to this freak who is scared out of his wits of saying the wrong thing, doing the wrong thing, or just breathing wrong. These people intimidate me for no reason other than they have always scared the living bejesus out of me.

Like I said, these are good people with warm hearts and so very friendly. They never, ever talk bad about someone and it’s because of this niceness that I feel so very out of place. I don’t belong, or at least I think that I don’t. Some of these young ladies that I went to school with 20+ years ago are the same sweet and wonderful ladies I met that first day I walked through the gym with another sophmore.

Anyhow…so how do I go from a guy who is so rock stable sure of himself to a buffoon who second guesses every single thing about himself and his actions especially.

Okay…the venting is over. I’m going to go watch House and remember what it’s like to be a jerk again. Thanks for listening.

Welcome to the family little pup

Today, we were able to get Cujo a new friend. It’s a cute little animal from the Schertz, TX Animal welfare group. These guys do not have a facility so a lot of really goodhearted people foster these poor pets until a suitable foster can be located.

The unnamed female puppy

Bailey the puppy

We haven’t had a female dog since Pebbles left us. I’m hoping we can find a suitable name. She doesn’t respond very well to “hey you”

Post your suggestions below. Thanks!

Cutting the umbilical cords

With my webhosting needs diminishing and the loss of two major clients due to the fault of my soon to be former service provider, I have decided to essentially fire them. I was paying them several hundred dollars per year for hosting services and they repaid the favor by trying to prove me wrong whenever a problem surfaced rather than fix the problem.

Sorry Dave you cannot do that

Sorry Dave you cannot do that

This happened time and time again. I won’t even go into the time they made a major service upgrade and lost not just all of my data but the data for most of the subscribers affected by the upgrade.

Basically…I started with this company when they were small and now they don’t even do web/email hosting anymore. Their sole focus is server monitoring.

But if you want an idea how frustrating dealing with these guys were you can read this exchange with their tech support

Anyhow…I’ll be working with this new site now. Let me know if you have any ideas.

Another day..another photo

Back in March of this year, I was at a birthday party for William Lee Calk. He turned two. While there was some downtime inbetween castle bounces, I walked over to the nearby San Antonio river and took some photos of its inhabitants, the ducks.

A photo of ducks doing their thing in the San Antonio river in Brackenridge Park

A photo of ducks doing their thing in the San Antonio river in Brackenridge Park

I was contacted tonight and ask by a small online guidebook if they could use my photo. Of course I said yes! Once they tell me when and where this is published, I’ll be sure to let you know.

Wow…rain…

It’s raining outside right now. That’s perfect. We really need it and my house really needs it more. Can you believe that last year it rained almost twice every week during the month of July and this year, we didn’t get two rain events the entire month?

Apartment resident looks out as rain soaks her makeshift patio

Apartment resident looks out as rain soaks her makeshift patio

Oh and you should know that I have not removed the old site yet so there may be some DNS resolution issues as I migrate the other domains that I manage from one hosting company to another. Don’t worry…everyone’s content will be safe.

I’ll let you know if I need any help.

Thanks!