Saturday, March 31, 2012

focused eyes

After viewing the first D800 frames, my friend David asked me to zoom in on my dog Lilybee's eyes so he could check sharpness.  I thought it would benefit us both, however, if I shot some studio portraits with our new fluorescent lights.  So, after class on Friday, I asked one of my former students, Jesse Fox, if she would stand in for the test.  Sharpness looks fine to me, and the fact that these 50 MB files can become 20x30 inch prints makes the D800 a special camera. And the eyes - well, they belong to a young photographer who was just voted the 2nd best visual artist in Cincinnati by City Beat Magazine. Sharp & focused.


Look up, look down, I told my Photo 1 students this week - their minds & eyes usually intent on what's directly in front. And, I reminded them - you don't need a helicopter or airplane to shoot aerials.  Sometimes the view is great both ways, and sometimes a single frame encompasses all.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012


I guess excitement and expectation would best describe the unboxing of a new camera. Although as pros we claim to look at our cameras & lenses as tools, we all have a little 'gadget freak' in us.  So it was when I opened my new Nikon D800 and shot the first few frames yesterday.  The D800, although much like my other Nikons in appearance, is a radical departure in its make-up.  Creating frames 3 times the size of my D3, the 800 makes for a huge change in resolution, handling/storing of files and a general re-thinking of how to approach digital photography.  It's like loading a roll of Kodachrome 25 again - you have to slow down your approach & attention to detail and work a little harder at making images that live up to the potential of the camera. 

Saturday, March 24, 2012

fast horses

Spring is rushing at me faster than I thought - the magazine asked me to photograph a Mint Julep at Virgil's in Bellevue, so we must be closing in on Derby day. We tried to make Juleps once, even used small batch whiskey & mint from the garden - but it must take a long, dry day at the race track to really enjoy them.  Got to admit, however, that Eric the bartender serves up one that looks pretty refreshing.

Saturday, March 17, 2012


There was a time when all books, posters and cards were typeset & printed by hand.  Like many things, that era has largely passed. But now, in a small shop on Main Street, Brian Stuparyk - a fellow NKU instructor, has opened Steam Whistle Press. Filled with wood, steel, lead & ink, art has now returned to paper.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

farmers hit the big city

Sometimes people get the recognition they deserve.  Congrats Marvin, Earl & Loren...


GREAT NEWS!  I'm really excited to share with you that we entered the Photo Essay in the CRMA awards competition, for photography.  (CRMA=City and Regional Magazine Association). And, it is one of 4 finalists to win in that category.

Congrats!  Thanks for bringing beautiful work to the magazine.  We'll keep you posted - they announce the winners in May.



morning light

 Early morning light, upstairs in the old farmhouse.

Monday, March 5, 2012

is it sharp

It's spring break at NKU and I had hoped to be shooting something really exciting this week but first, a problem.  While rooting around in my camera closet on Saturday I dropped my 60mm micro lens - the money lens (because of all the cash it's made through the years) - on the oak floor.  Ouch.  So, just to make sure it was still functional I decided to test it this morning by shooting stuff in my office. There's the bridge pins on my Martin & the red spruce grain of my Guild @ f3.2, Elise and Dan Gurney @ f2.8, my dad's Indiana Hoosier @ f5.6 and my Domke.  All good it appears, so on to spring break.