Eight years

I can hardly believe the time has gone so quickly. It was only yesterday that we met again after so many decades separated by life’s diverging paths. Shutterfly. It sends me pics from way back. ??? How??? How’d they get into my private life? Ah!! The bastards mine my Apple iPhoto shares. Well, it is entertaining. I share to family in order for them to keep up with our lives. Interesting? …on many levels. Emma was terrified to find out mom had a boyfriend. Jen had a secret codeword in case things were not going well during our first date. You know, the usual. That bowl of soup?!! It was Colleen’s first taste of hot and sour soup. Rock!! She’s been under a rock. I grew up with that soup! She loved it! ….about, sorry, more (the soup) than me?… no, she loves me more!! We had a grand time. Little did we know that this was the start of an extended honeymoon. Yeah, we did it backwards and celebrated first. The marriage came a few (five) years later. I will never live that one down. But then again we separated for about five decades after childhood. What was the rush?

Selfies. We do ‘em all the time. I am not an iPhone guy. So we use whatever camera is in my hand. Keep in mind the backdrop is NYC. Guess where? … museum, Grand Central, west side highway…. I shoot redundantly. It ensures that one image will likely have both of us smiling. I’m left handed. You knew that? So mostly I shoot with my left hand. But the reality is that the shutter button is top right and so the fingers reach there from the left hand when you are holding the camera backward. Duh!

And Shutterfly sent this collage to me on the day I scheduled this post. Thanks.

One shot

Pick one. … to go with birthday wishes. Ummm, no card. Shhh… I forgot! Oh now! It will be a special day! We got all sorts of things planned. And to finish? Dinner in a favorite restaurant. I got it covered. A sentiment? Sure. I’m very lucky we met again. It was the third grade when we met. And then we parted for (decades) a very long time. Lucky. Sometimes life throws you rainbows. Happy birthday, my dearest.

Critique: Portrait. You want to try to be flattering. I used bounce flash. You get relative even lighting with less shadow. Composition: good. Smile: warm – like a hug. Background: it could be less cluttered. Focus: good. I could do better. This was a find after a quick perusal of the files in my catalog. Find one on the go!? Ha ha. It ain’t easy. Thankfully there were choices. Sorry, I didn’t get a card. I was remiss. We were never out where I was never alone to get one. But then a picture tells a thousand words. And there is little doubt I wish you the very best!


Well, folks, don’t do this. I shoot thru my car window, hence the tint. Clouds! Neat! Dramatic! The camera is set on auto. I use ?? 50mm lens setting. Fire away. You’ll get the hang of it pretty quick. Avoid traffic clutter and cars if you can. Bridges can be dramatic. And by the side of the road you can always see interesting stuff. But, the clouds are dramatic and deserve some credits. After all you will not see this formation again. What I shot is once and one of a kind. It’s humbling.


After a long hiatus – ha ha – about nine years or so, give or take, I have revived this blog, sort of. My humor has not diminished. In fact, it’s probably more cracked than ever. I do not intend to publish with much regularity. Much of what I talk about will be how I got the shot and how the reader might learn. Tips. It’s about tips to improve your own photography – which is already perfect in every way.

Groups. First you gotta have one. Then you gotta herd them into position. Herding cats. Mostly folks are fairly cooperative. Ya gotta get them to look at the camera. Right!

At the end of the day, be sure everyone gets a copy. It will ensure cooperation when the next gathering comes next year.

I use flash. The bright “pop” gets everyone to notice that the camera is taking their picture. Someone always has their eyes closed. So be it. I do multiple takes. I do not overthink. And I do not Photoshop the image. I pick out the important people – me and Colleen – and make sure they look good. After that I publish one or two copies.

In this image I used a higher vantage point – staircase. I used a wide angle lens. It’s a group shot and they spread out! Flash helps to get even lighting and minimize shadows. More than one shot ensures that fewer people are caught with their eyes closed on any given shot.

See! Easy!? Right!