Sunday, February 7, 2016

Untitled 2016

I have so much to be thankful for over the past few days.  Rather than inundating you while I am in my feelings, I will sum up my thoughts with a simple phrase, "But God!".

Saturday, January 9, 2016


For the past four years, I have blogged about how the new year would allow me to explore new avenues of my photography.  This year is no different.  I still have my goals as a photographer for the new year, but this blog post will not feature them.  Instead, I want to look back to some photos I took in 2015 with a camera lent to me by a mentor who is pretty much family by now.  Although I shot with this camera some this year, I did not understand its full effect until the past month.  Below are some of the pictures that I went back to edit.  

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Hawai'i Vacay

I miss Hawai'i.  I miss the aloha spirit, pristine beaches (the Hideaways, Poipu, Hale'iwa, and Lumahai), delicious foods.  While I only got to visit two, the islands are wonderful.  I miss the hikes (Koko Head, Makapu'u Point, Diamond Head, and Kalepa Ridge), warm waters of the Pacific, and beautiful sights.  I miss the sounds of the birds, wild chicken running around, and occasional pop-up shower during the day.  I miss the freshness of the seafood and what was for me the exoticness of the fruits I tried, such as lychee, passion fruit also known as lilikoi, and papaya.  I miss our Sumiye newlyweds, our amazing hostess in Oahu, Tigist (sorry again about the shower), and her new kitten Lilikoi (like the fruit), and our Poipu Inn (our bed and breakfast we stayed while in Kauai).  I miss dancing in the sand with my fiancée, holding her hand while walking along ridges, and laughing together when the waves would knock us down

No matter how much I work on my photos to recreate the magical feeling, it will never replace actually being there.  These pictures help add to the experience of the trip.  My goal is to go back and island-hop once again.

Hanalei Valley

View from Diamond Head looking onto Honolulu and the neighborhood of Waikiki.  

Downtown Honolulu from Magic Island

Lumahai Beach

Waimea Canyon

The Hideaways with Bali Hai in the background

Lumahai Beach

Sunday, September 6, 2015

How Was Your Day?

Winning the four ribbons for my photography at the 2014 Kentucky State Fair brought about a great sense of accomplishment.   It is as if all of the miles driving, time shooting, and bugging my fiancee about my photos were validated.  Since I earned a blue ribbon in the Aspiring Division, the fair regulations now required me to enter my photos in the Accomplished Division, which is the highest one can enter.  With the accolades also brought a new challenge.  I barely got my matted prints through the door from the state fair last summer, when I began to set my sights on this year's entries.  

Moving up to this division would be no easy task.  I felt the need to step my game up if I was going to hang with the big dogs.  I sought to grow as a photographer in many ways, such as relearning the fundamentals, poring myself over books and blogs, picking up infrared, post-processing a photo, and understanding that sometimes I have to physically take extra steps instead of relying on a zoom to frame a picture.  In theory and in technique, my thoughts were consumed with photography at home, at work, in sleep, and in shower.  What to enter for the fair became a frequent topic with my fiancee-- taking over how-was-your-day formalities during meals and even our intimate pillow talk. Driving to each destination even became a hunt for the most picturesque route.  Each time I pulled my car over to take a picture, I kept thinking to myself that this landscape might just be the blue ribbon shot.  For nearly a year, this was the new normal.

Fast forward to this year's Kentucky State Fair.  I submitted three entries in the competition; two did not place, as the classes within the division were very competitive.  The winning photo (below) of Beargrass Creek placed Second in the Monochromatic Photography Division.  In the clutch, I captured this moment on an early July morning-- just one month shy of the submission deadline.  Dinner conversations have returned to normal.  For now.  

Saturday, August 15, 2015

City Slickers Part 3

On a whim, my fiancée and I decided to drive to Red River Gorge to view the Perseids meteor shower, which peaked last Wednesday.  We were told one of the better places to view the night sky without a tree line obstruction was on the famous Half Moon Arch, which happens to be an unmarked trail.  Let me put on record that we are not even close to what you would call "hikers".  We had no legit flashlight and no compass-- just my photography equipment and the light beams from our two trusty iPhones.  Kids, do not try this at home.  We stepped out of the vehicle into a darkness that I have never been blanketed in.   All I could hear were crickets and cicadas as I recalled the zombie-survival skills from watching The Walking Dead.  After twenty forever-minutes, a half mile down the trail, and friendly greetings from other Perseids-viewers, we got to Half Moon Arch.  It is possible to continue past the arch for an amazing view point, but we were on the cliff side, and we've made deposits for our wedding, so we stopped where we were in order to keep safety first, and just looked up.  This is what we saw. 

The streak at the top center of the photo captured the path of a falling meteor.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

My Pleasant View

Photography is not just about the picture perfect moment.  It's about what it means to you when you find it.

Sunday, May 31, 2015


Two and half months between posts is a long time.  Each time I would start to write, it felt that I was trying to create a post based upon necessity of trying to keep up a presence on social media rather than having a desire to write what was on my mind.

So much to catch up on!  First, Spring has been absolutely beautiful in Kentucky.  I feel that it has been God's way of allowing us to enjoy this beauty at least one more time.  I have been able to explore into different variety of photography from infrared to long exposures.  Secondly, I did it-- I proposed. I am getting married.  I have not been able to stop smiling since the first of May.  She said yes! Finally, I am getting married.  :)