Monthly Archives: December 2012

Another Year Ends…

When I rebooted this blog a year and a half ago, I had no idea that it would become what it has. One thing I said then was that I would post about things that I was passionate about, and that’s certainly been the case. I just didn’t understand that the passion would be almost entirely photography, and I really didn’t understand what a huge percentage of the happiness I’ve had would come from taking pictures. Honestly, this would have been a pretty bleak year if I hadn’t had my camera to help haul me up out of the depths. To give you some idea of what a major player my camera is in my life now, consider this: In 2010, I took 1600 pictures, nearly half of which were taken during the legendary Spring Break Road Trip with the kids. In 2011, I took about 7700 pictures, after having got my DSLR in May. In 2012, I have taken over 28,000 pictures. Can you see a trend here?

Another piece of my world that has given me a great amount of pleasure is Google Plus. My participation has grown all throughout the year, and it has been such a wonderful experience to be a part of the community there. In October of last year I wrote about my experience on G+ up to that point, and I mentioned how gratifying it was that about 80 of the people that I was following had in turn followed me. It makes me shake my head in disbelief when I look at those numbers now, and see that over 12,000 people now have me in their circles. Very flattering, and very humbling. It’s been a fun G-ride in 2012, and I’m looking forward to 2013.

One can never tell what the new year holds in store, but I have a few goals in mind. One is to start taking better care of myself. I have recently been reminded of my own mortality, as well as my keen desire to be healthy enough to do all the things I enjoy doing for many years to come. My goal for that is to exit 2013 skinnier, healthier, and happier than I enter it. I also want to take pictures. A lot of them. And get better at doing it. I figure the healthier I am, the more pictures I’ll take :-).

On a less selfish level, my hope for the world is that it’s a better place next year than it has been this year. May your 2013 be filled with peace, happiness and music. And on that note (pun intended), I will leave you with the final entry in my 366-day non-project. See you next year!!!

This Ain’t a 366 Project 366/366 – Music in My Heart


It’s hard to believe there’s only one day left in my not-a-project-project. Where did this year go? The year’s penultimate shot falls under the category of “caption this”…

“What? My trainer says I should stretch before I go for a swim.”

This Ain’t a 366 Project 365/366 – Stretching

Fire-Star Orchid

I had to go do a little shooting with my new macro lens, and decided some place warm would be a nice place to go. A place where orchids grow…especially ones that look like they are in flames. Very cool…

This Ain’t a 366 project 364/366 – Fire-Star Orchid


So, I asked Santa for a 1DX for Christmas…didn’t happen. BUT…I did get the world’s smallest digital camera!

This Ain’t a 366 Project 363/366 – Tiny DSLR

Product Photography

Back in the days when I ran the Systemcooling web site, I did a lot of product photography. To be more accurate, I did a lot of BAD product photography. This was long before I developed a serious in photography, and my product shooting setup consisted of whatever point and shoot I had at the time, along with the built-in flash, and the background was whatever space I could clear on my workbench. Obviously I didn’t come out of it with much worth using, and I spent hours and hours in Photoshop trying to make the shots look less horrible than they came out of the camera.

I haven’t done any product stuff since then, but when the Fedex guy showed up with my shiny new 100mm f/2.8 L Macro lens, I thought I’d try my luck again. The setup isn’t much more sophisticated than back then, but at least the execution is a little better. I used the 5D2 with the 50mm f/1.4, equipped with a cheap and cheerful 150-LED video light on-camera. The background is 2 sheets of 13×19 glossy photo paper. It’s not perfect, but it’s miles ahead of what I did back then, AND I only spent about 2 minutes in Photoshop!

This Ain’t a 366 Project 362/366 – Product Photography


When the Lord of the Rings trilogy came out on bluray, I picked up the boxed set, which came with a set of pewter figurines. I decided to have a go at Gandalf with my macro lens just for fun. The portion of the figure you see here is about an inch tall.

This Ain’t a 366 Project 361/366 – Gandalf

All I want for Christmas

Is for the Broncos to win the Superbowl. Hope that’s not asking too much…

This Ain’t a 366 Project 360/366 – All I Want for Christmas


This is what little brothers do when big sisters are too far away to give them a whack…

This Ain’t a 366 Project 359/366 – Raspberry

Tiger Pair

In black and white, no less…

This Ain’t a 366 Project 358/366 – Tiger Pair

Don’t Make Me Angry

You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry…

Well, the world did not end yesterday, although I suspect there are people with hangovers so bad that they WISH it would have…anyway…

This Ain’t a 366 Project 357/366 – Don’t Make Me Angry