Friday, November 30, 2012

Race for the Cure: Nashville" Family and Friends: A Group Photo!

The team below was having a lot of fun.   

They willingly gathered together for a group photo but haven't told me their names!  

Regardless, my sincere thanks to you all!

Thursday, November 29, 2012


It had been almost 10 years since I had been to California for something other than work.  So, I was pleased to make a trip there recently to visit friends. 

Meet Barney and Maria!

They were gracious enough to drive me around and ply me with wine! 

They are wonderful hosts and friends.

We ended the trip there with a dinner at their home.  It was a beautiful evening and the table was set outdoors.  This isn't a bad shot, considering it was hand held with the aperature wide open!

Thanks Barney and Maria!  I will try to get a trip scheduled again VERY soon.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

HDR: Grasses in the Sunrise

OK, this isn't a portrait.  I know.  It's my blog.  I can change from time to time if I want.
This is one of my first attempts at High Density Resolution (HDR) imagery. 

You take a photograph with your camera set to take three images with one press of the shutter.  Each of the images are different in terms of the color balance (the correct term is "bracketing")   Using HDR software, you blend the three images and, in theory, take the best of all three.

This was taken at sunrise.  I did a little editing with the software just to see what it looked like.

I rather like it.  But, I am not sure how it works for portraits.  I will need to find out!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Halloween with the Little Ones

I happened to be visiting my daughter over Halloween.  I don't get to visit as often as I would like.  So, being there when the kids were especially "active" with something was pretty fun.

Meet Big J and Little J:

In the photo above, Big J had put Little J inside, out of the reach of the candy.   It's all about protecting your turf, ya know.

Hi Buzz!

Hi Woody!  Woody, you need to learn to eat sitting in the kitchen rather than wandering around with pizza all over your mouth and fingers!

Monday, November 26, 2012


When I was in Nashville, I had the chance to visit my friend Oleg.   If you follow Oleg's blog, you will recognize today's portrait!

Meet Gremlin!

Thanks for standing still long enough for me to zoom in!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Race for the Cure: Nashville" Family and Friends: Random!

The family/group below saw me wandering around taking photos and asked if I would be willing to get a couple of photos of their entire group.
"Of course!".  It was my sincere pleasure!  I did not get everyone's name for these photos.  But, they were delightful and charming.  I thoroughly enjoyed meeting them.
I actually stopped these three first.  I loved the balloon hat!

Meet the entire group!

Finally, I asked whether I could take this gentleman's photo by himself.  I LOVED his smile.  He was having a great day with his family and friends.  You could tell! 

My sincere thanks to you all!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Race for the Cure: Nashville" Family and Friends

Normally as I walk around, I am the person asking to take someone's photo.  I was delighted at this event when two different groups of people asked me to take their photos. 
It was my sincere pleasure to help both groups celebrate this event.
Meet Group 1:  (I really need to be more creative with group names!)
Front row: left to right:  Joyce (purple coat), Rudy, Toledo (in the pink wig), and Corsica.
Second row: left to right:  Melissa, Ben, Bobby, Dot, and Terrell.  My apologies to the group if I got someone's name out of order!

Terrell asked whether I would take a photo of him and his artwork.  He has a number of beautiful pieces on display.

This group was walking to celebrate Joyce's surviving.  She was just eight weeks out of surgery.
My sincere thanks to all of you.  And, thank you for your kindness in asking me to take your photos.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thanksgiving: 2012

First, to those whom I communicated with as to the timing of future posts, my apologies.  I have delayed all scheduled posts for a couple of days to account for the holiday and personal issues. 

Now, for the Thanksgiving post.

As we look at our lives, there are obvious things for which we can be thankful.   They include family, friends, food, health, etc.  All are important.  All are priceless.

But now and then, it is important to be thankful for the mundane; for the ordinary.

Meet Little J and his father.

The conversation went like this:

My daughter:  "Honey, will you please check Little J?  I think he has a messy diaper."
There is nothing more to be said after that.

Be thankful for what you have.  While it could be better.  It could be worse.  Keep your balance. Keep your compass.  Take care of yourselves.  Love those about you, near and far.  And, be kind and gentle to one another.  We can be pretty fragile.

Little J was hospitalized this last week.  He was a very sick little man.  He is home now and feeling better.  But, we are watching him closely.

Be thankful for what you have.  It can all change in an instant.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Race for the Cure: Nashville 5 Ford 2/2

OK, I am the first to admit the title for this posting isn't very creative.  But, it is descriptive.
Here is the second group of charming volunteers at the Ford booth!

Meet Amber!

Meet Marva!

Meet Sanna!

I hope I got everyone's name right!  It was a bit chaotic with me trying to get photos and names while they were busy helping others in the Ford booth.

My sincere thanks to you all!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Race for the Cure: Nashville 5 Ford 1/2

Ford had a rather large booth at the Race for the Cure event in Nashville.  I really enjoy seeing corporations contributing to social and health causes.

They had a large group of very cheerful and helpful volunteers.  They graciously volunteered to let me take their photographs.  

So, for the first group (of two postings)

Meet Christine:

And, meet Liz!

My thanks to you both!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Race for the Cure: Nashville 4: Harley's!

People support the Race for the Cure in a varity of ways.

Meet Bo!

He purchased a pink Harley and he and his wife bring it to various Race for the Cure events around the country.   They set up a tent. And, people can sit on the Harley and have their photos taken.

He and his wife drove all the way from Ohio for this event. 

Thanks Bo!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Race for the Cure: Nashville 3: Angels

How can you pass up a photo of someone wearing hair like this? 
Meet Ashley

And, Ashley and Angelus!

Angelus is Latin for Angels.  They were walking for Kenita!  Ashley and Kenita had gone to school together.  They were walking to support her.

My sincere thanks to you both!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Race for the Cure: Nashville 2 Walkers

This is the first image I took of people who had completed the walk.  These two were smiling and laughing with one another.  So, of course, I asked to take their photo! 
Meet Elin and Alison:  Mother and daughter!

After the first shot, Alison asked if I could take a photo of the sign on her mother's back.  They were walking in memory of Shirly, Elin's sister.

My sincere thanks to you both!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Race for the Cure: Nashville: 1 Support

I had the opportunity to be in Nashville for work. It just happened to be the Race for the Cure weekend right outside my hotel. So, I got up early, avoiding anything that remotely looked like work, grabbed my camera and went for a walk.

Meet Lea and Lisa!

Cool hats and warm, kind hearts!

Having local law enforcement on site is always nice!

Meet Steve, Tommy, and Allen!

I think they were a bit supicious about having their photos taken.  But, I managed to convince them it was safe after I explained the whole blog thing. 

On a side note:  one of the issues about taking "group" photos is the dead space between the individuals heads.  OK...I know that sounds funny.  But,  if you look at the top most photo, you will see that both of the individuals have their heads slightly tipped toward one another.  This reduces the "space" between them and makes for a better photo.

This was as close as the police officers were going to get.   When I started, they were about 1 foot apart from one another.  They were gracious enough to crowd together for the shot!  I really wanted them to get a bit closer.  It was a little funny.  And, they were amused with it, too.

My thanks to you all!  And, as I told the officers, it really won't hurt.  REALLY!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Cherry Dirt!

I always appreciate musicians.  They work hard.  They practice long hours.  And, sometimes they get the weirdest gigs.

Meet Cherry Dirt!

What struck me, at least for the set that I watched, was that the gentleman above was playing a uke!  Nope, NOT a guitar!  A uke!  He was quite good!

It was a tough gig.  They played outdoors for a few hours.  And, as you can see, it was a bit chilly!  It is hard playing guitar (or a uke) with cold fingers!

The woman vocalist had a wonderful voice. 

My sincere thanks to you both!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Another Photographer

I wasn't the only one chasing little ones around in the corn maze. 

Meet Stephanie!

I notice her because she was riding herd on 3 or 4 kids.   And, she was doing her best, as many people were, trying to get a good photo of the kids!

Thanks Stephanie!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Grab the Bull by the Horns?

I had the chance to wander down the Promenade in Santa Monica for a few hours one day recently.  If you haven't been there, it is a street closed to traffic.  Crowded with shoppers and street entertainers, it can be very fun to just walk and observe.

Since I like hats, I had to get a photo.   He was supporting a street musician.  He was proud of his friend.  And, his friend was doing just fine.

My sincere thanks!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Sunday, November 11, 2012


I took the Big D to the local corn maze and watched as he ran through the hay bales.  It occurred to me that he was meeting and overcoming challenges of his world.  I left him alone.  He did just fine.

Which way to go?

Think outside the box!  You don't need to color between the lines!   Go UP!

JUMP that huge canyon!

I could feel his joy at RUNNING.  I suspect this is the feeling people get when flying, riding a motorcycle, free diving, jumping out of airplanes.  It starts young and needs to be encouraged.  It helps us grow.

Of course, a rest is important, too.  

Well done, Big D.   Well done!   I believe you will be fine.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

RIP Mary

Many friends know that my daughter's mother-in-law has been fighting a battle with lung cancer.  She lost her battle early Friday morning, at home.

Meet Mary:

This is not a great photo of Mary.  I wanted to get a photo of her last weekend when I had the chance to visit.  But, she was suffering greatly by then and I did not want to add to the stress. 
I had to crop this image out of a much larger family photo and lost some of the clarity.  But, it does convey a bit of the joy Mary brought to her family and to those of us who were fortunate to know her and her kindness and generocity.  Her home was the focus of wonderful family gatherings filled with laughter, music, and wine. 

In her final days, the family moved a hospital bed into her living room where she should see the backyard and grandkids playing. 

We will all miss you, Mary.  Thank you for your kindness.

Friday, November 9, 2012


The gentleman below was at a winery as a vendor selling clothing made of Alpaca hair.  I suppose there was also clothing made from Llamas, Icelandic Sheep and other "fiber" animals.

This gentleman raises the animals!

Meet Tom:

Nice stasch!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Sister Night Out

The three women below were all sharing a table having a wonderful time.  I was actually sitting just behind them and kept smiling at how the interacted and how much fun they were having.

Meet Diane:

Meet Karen:

Meet Linda:

They are not, in fact, sisters.  I sort of missed the exact connection of how they knew one another.  But, they had a remarkable story of courage and hope.   One lost her husband not long ago.  The other is a breast cancer survivor.  And, I know there was something about a kidney donation with the third.   Well, I BELIEVE that is right.

Regardless, the women were charming,  gracious, and filled with hope.

My sincere thanks to you all.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Julie and Friends

This group was listening to the band and having a wonderful time.  I finally had to approach them and ask if they were related, work associates, or just friends. 

Meet Julie and friends!

I tried to get everyone's names. But, I know I wasn't successful.  Julie is in front.  And, I believe Dave is in the white shirt.  Fred is between Julie and Dave.  Just behind Julie is Jim.  And, Paul is the very distinquished looking gentleman on the left.  I could, of course, be wrong.

I believe I am missing the names of the woman in the upper left and the gentleman in the upper right.  If someone would send me an email validating the names, in order, I will update this post!

Here is another shot of the two I believe whose names I am missing:

But, this group was wonderful.   They were having so much fun.  I had to smile when I observed them.

Thanks all!  Julie, that's a fine posse you have there!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Confidence, Grace and Polish

I have women friends and we talk about business trips and sitting in a bar, alone, having a drink.  Men do this all the time.  I've done it.  It gets me out of the hotel room and around other people.  Even if I don't talk to anyone, the social experience is important. 
Most of my women friends will not do this.  If they are at a hotel, they get a drink and bring it back to their room. 
Meet Doreen!


I noticed her sitting alone and assumed she was waiting for someone.  So, I interrupted her and asked whether I could sit next to her for a few photos of other people. I wanted to get the photos before her other party came and took the chair I needed!

She graciously let me sit and get the shots.  Once I got those photos, I turned and thanked her.  This was the look she had.  So, I HAD to ask to take her photo, as well. 

She was, in fact, alone.   "Confidence".  I liked it.  I was trying to figure out what drew me to her portrait.  And, I think that was it.  Confidence.  She wanted to get out and listen to the band and have some great sushi.  So, she did.  Well done!  We briefly chatted and she was grace and polish personified.

Thanks Doreen!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Brother and Sister

My guitar teacher mentioned the band was playing again at their regular local gig.  I really like going there to hear the band and to visit with the restaurant patrons. 
Meet Hannah and George!

They were relaxing and listening to the band. They had just finished their shifts working at the restaurant and were meeting friends.    Hannah didn't think she photographed well.  I beg to disagree.  I think they both look great.

Thanks Hannah and George!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Dental Hygientists are Fun Too!

I have been going to the same dentist for a long time.  And, with one exception, I believe this specific hygientist has always been the first smiling face I see when I get in that chair.

Meet MB!

She has a wonderful sense of humor that cracks me up.  And, I must admit, she knows what she is doing!  It's all business but with a bit of a gentle touch!  Not bad when you consider she has all those sharp impliments in your mouth!

Thanks MB.  I always leave with a smile, showing off my clean teeth!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

The REST of the Band: The Martinez Brothers

I always try to be polite and careful when photographing anyone performing.  It is easy to get sidetracked and forget where you are.  Well, maybe for someone as old as I am, it is easy.

Meet the Martinez brothers.

I took several photos of the base player.  But, he was so into his music, so relaxed, that he played with his eyes closed.  I really enjoyed watching him.  

I am trying to remember what the gentleman below was playing.  I am drawing a complete blank!   I owe him an apology!

The band was fantastic! 

Thanks all!