Somber

“…conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.”

Abraham Lincoln. 11/19/1863
Devil’s Den from Little Round Top at Gettysburg National Military Park. | Order a copy of this , or other, images.

Travel

Apparently this has been the summer of travel and I’ve really got to work on the whole travel photography thing. I tend to overpack for any trip when it comes to my gear. About a third of my carry-on luggage was devoted to the overflow from my gear bag!  Anyway, from NYC to LA (yep coast-to-coast) I got some decent images.  Maybe it’s time to flip over to the whole mirrorless thing…

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Very other-worldly out there in the desert – the heat was making me see things.

Henge

Bucket list item – henge road trip:

  1. Stonehenge (Witshire, England) – ✓
  2. Carhenge (Alliance, NE) – ✓
  3. Foamhenge (Natural Bridge, VA) – ✓

What’s next – suggestions?

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RVTY 51

I've got a lot of traveling to do - this would be a fun RV trip. http://www.roadsideamerica.com/story/29025

I’ve got a lot of traveling to do – this would be a fun RV trip. “Stonehenges” in the United States.

It’s Only Tuesday, It’s Snowing and I Don’t Have My Selfie Stick!

I’m amazed that this is only our second day in the parks – we’ve done so much already this week and a great deal of it has nothing to do with Disney.  Ya see, we’re selling our house and closing while we’re down here.  Geez.  Thank goodness we have a kick-ass realtor!  Anyway, I’ve been itching to get up in the air to shoot some awesome photos, but I’m more than slightly concerned about the Disney no-fly zone.  I’ve checked, and our hotel is outside the 3-mile radius, but still…ya know?  And I’ve only taken my good equipment into the parks once – to Hollywood Studios for the fireworks.  Didn’t get a really good angle, but still a great show.  So most of my images have been with my GoPro, which isn’t a bad camera, but it won’t shoot RAW – BOO – anybody at GoPro reading this? 😉  And yes, Disney has now banned all selfie sticks.  They even have pamphlets about it!  BOO – anybody at Disney reading this?  I can actually understand that rule, but I’m not the idiot who’d do something stupid with it.  It’s everybody else :P.

I have an awesome photo in mind that I'm still going to try to get before the end of the week - fingers crossed!

I have an awesome photo in mind that I’m still going to try to get before the end of the week – fingers crossed!  This one’s still cool though, right?  Snow at Disney in July…

Travel

So it’s time to start traveling with the aerial rig.  I’m starting to think that my galleries are getting a little saturated with Winchester images (makes sense, right?).  Anyway, I know this isn’t very far from me, but it’s a start.  I recently shot some aerial footage for the town of Front Royal and, as always, I grabbed some stills while I was up there.  Gonna see if I can snag a Disney panorama while we’re in Florida this year.

Front Royal

It’s been a while since I’ve “framed” one of my images, but this one fits the bill. My goal is to do this up and down the valley with as many towns as possible…a little local traveling. | Order a print of this image.

Challenge

I’m committing to competing in the Challenge Williamsburg this Summer.  I took an entire year off of racing and am itching to get back “in the saddle” so to speak.  I think I might be done (won’t really say “never”) with pure bicycle racing for now, but need/want to stay fit.  I think this is how I’ll do it.  I was looking over the course maps and sure enough, this is where it starts!

Jamestown Beach Park near Williamsburg, VA

Jamestown Beach Park near Williamsburg, VA

Icon

This time last year I was at Hollywood Studios shooting a Marathon.  I never made it back to the hat to get the night shot that I’ve always wanted.  Guess I never will.  Bummer.

Long live the sorcerer's hat.

Long live the sorcerer’s hat.

Keyhole

Feeling creative on a trip to Williamsburg a year or two ago.

The Wren Building on the campus of William & Mary.

The Wren Building on the campus of William & Mary.

The Big Apple

Might be time for another road trip…

The Big Apple

I think cabin fever is getting the best of me.

 

RAW

With over 35,000 images shot last year there’s bound to be some I missed.  I’m kinda bummed that some of my old stuff wasn’t shot in RAW.  Not that they aren’t goo images, I just can’t do as much with them  with all the stuff I’m learning.  Oh well.

This was a side trip that I took on the way down to shoot the VA Beach Shamrock 1/2 Marathon last year.  It also sparked my interest in visiting more lighthouses.

This was a side trip that I took on the way down to shoot the VA Beach Shamrock 1/2 Marathon last year. It also sparked my interest in visiting more lighthouses.

Revisit

Along with continuing to shoot both photos and videos and teaching a photography course at SU for the Spring semester, I’m going to look back at some of the images I created before I really knew what I was doing.  I might revisit the edit or I might just post as-is because I’m satisfied with what I already accomplished.  I’ll start with an easy one (best way, right?).  I’m pretty happy how this turned out – not just in the design, but because I can now say I shot Africa’s Big 5!

The Big 5

I’m no hunter so my African safari consisted of a 2-week long photo shoot. Our guides were probably more excited than we were that we got to see Africa’s Big 5. | Order a print of this image.

 

Pit Stop

Any excuse to take the aerial camera out and fly it, right?  I saw these trees across the highway on the way down to Florida and said I thought it would make a cool image.  So we stopped on the way home.  I really missed out on some cool photography on our cross-country RV trip a couple of years ago.

Our first rest stop on the way home from Florida.

Our first rest stop on the way home from Florida.

Giving Thanks

With it being almost a year since the demise of the local ABC affiliate in Winchester, I’m thankful that I was able to remain in that area and that my family was supportive as I made the transition into doing what I enjoy doing.  It’s been somewhat of a bumpy ride and it’s certainly not over yet, but I’m thankful that they came with me.

I know, it's not the most traditional image of Thanksgiving.  Just another thing I'm thankful for (we missed the first big storm).

I know, it’s not the most traditional image of Thanksgiving. Just another thing I’m thankful for – we missed the first big storm back home.

Drink Lid

I think Snapple drinks have programmed everybody to look under the lids of their drinks to see what’s under there.  You know you do it.  I’m alway looking under the lid.

I think I got somebody else's drink.

I think I got somebody else’s drink.  This was not a Snapple, by the way.

Material

Do you think there’s an American restaurant in Japan where they grill hotdogs and hamburgers and participate in various American idiosyncrasies?  I wonder what those idiosyncrasies would be.  And I wonder where the Japanese restaurants here in the U.S. get their material.  Is there some father somewhere in Japan making onion ring volcanoes for his kids at dinner?  Is there a Japanese mother making beating heart shapes out of rice?  These are things that make me go “hmmmmmmm…”

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Hidden Mickey

It’s a real thing.  At least as far as the public goes.  Disney has yet to officially acknowledge the Hidden Mickey phenomenon, although they do sell Hidden Mickey books in their gift shops.  hmmm….

Apparently it all started when EPCOT was being planned as more of an adult-targeted park including the sale of alcohol.  Since Disney characters and alcohol were taboo together it was established that none of the characters, especially Mickey, would ever be seen inside that park.  Well, the Imagineers took it as a challenge and started incorporating them into everything they could.  Voila!  Hidden Mickeys.

The general rule is that if it’s not associated with Disney then it’s not really an “official” Hidden Mickey.  It’s still fun though.

Not so hidden, but it makes for a great image. | Order a print of this image.

Not so hidden, but it makes for a great image. | Order a print of this image.

Griffith Park

The whole time I was here I kept thinking how cool it would be to fly the drone over it.

That's the Hollywood sign at the very top right of the image.

That’s the Hollywood sign at the very top right of the image.

Customer Experience

“Adults are only kids grown up, anyway.”

– Walt Disney


If I’ve learned anything from any of my trainings throughout my entire life, it’s that successful businesses get that way by putting the customer experience at the top of their priority list.  The two companies that immediately come to mind for me are Apple and Disney.  Sure, they’re for-profit companies, but their ultimate goal is to deliver a customer experience like no other.  When you can put aside that “I’m gonna get rich doing this” attitude and focus on being creative and innovative it all tends to work itself out.  And Disney is exceptionally good at it.  To watch my dad over this past weekend was pretty cool.  At almost 80 years old, he enjoyed that park every bit as much as any of the adolescents who were experiencing it for the first time.

There were a lot of ways I could have gone with today's post, but this image worked no matter which way I went.

There were a lot of ways I could have gone with today’s post, but this image worked no matter which way I went.

Viewing Size

Every once in a while I’ll post an image that’s just not meant to be viewed on a mobile device.  Realistically, I’d love for these types of photos to be viewed on a large HD screen of some sort where you can get in close and see the whole range and all the detail.  This image is a prime example, but unfortunately it’s too big.

I’m wrapping up a whirlwind weekend in California that literally began back in February when I registered and began stressing about having to run (everything went well, btw), and I’m sitting in the airport a whopping 5 hours early for my flight.  So I need to kill some time.

I shot a series of images of LA and the surrounding area today while in Griffith Park so I decided to try something – a mega/super/ultra, or whatever you want to call it, panorama image of LA.  It turned out great, but it’s going to be sized to fit your screen so it’ll appear really thin.  I posted it on Flickr (500px has a limit of 15,000 pixels on the longest side!), but it’s still sized to fit.  Bummer.  I wonder if I can get it printed full-size…

16 individual images.  File size is 2.82 GB.  Dimensions - 30926 X 3121 or 128.9" X 13" or 3.273 M X .33 M!

16 individual images. File size is 2.82 GB. Dimensions – 30926 X 3121 or 128.9″ X 13″ or 3.273 M X .33 M! It’s 10.6 feet long!