New Website

I’ve decided not to continue to contribute to this blog anymore since I haven’t had much interest in it lately.  Instead, I set up a new showcase website of my best images over at http:\\www.photoskunk.net (may need to clear/refresh browser history if that link just brings you back here to WordPress).  Additionally, I’m still on Flickr, Instagram, and 500px.  Thanks for reading, the nice comments, and all the interest in my photos.

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Shoreditch Street Art

I know, it’s been way too long since I last posted.  I’m still trying to figure out how to get out of my photography rut.  I need to get back into the habit of adding photos here.

I did want to share a collage of photos I took in May while on a business trip to London.  I stayed in the Shoreditch area of East London, which is rich with bizarre and interesting street art.  I walked around trying to capture as much as I could find but there was literally something around almost every corner so I’ll have to see if I can find more if I go back.

Image

Waiting for a Strike

Goal:  Capture a good image of bowling pins exploding in the air as the ball hits them.  Not there yet.

Of course it would help if the people I was bowling with got strikes more often.

Of course it would help if the people I was bowling with got strikes more often.

Photo Resolutions (Not the Technical Kind)

Happy 2013!  Wow, I’ve been neglecting this blog.  So it’s time to get back on track.  Problem is, my photography rut that I was in last year has kind of continued.  So I really need to work harder to get out of it.  I’ve been taking some photos, just not as many as usual and nothing too exciting.  I have made several photo books in the past couple of months and am working on my 2012 family photo album which is going to take a long time (already up to 10 pages for just January – and I hardly ever take photos in January!).   I joined a weekly photo challenge at PhotoChallenge.org but never submitted anything for week 1 when the theme was “Icon” (and we had 2 weeks to do it, so how bad is that???).  I could have submitted something from my archives, but the idea is to shoot new photos each week for the theme.  So I’m going to try really hard to do that.  Additionally, I’m going to continue to experiment with my growing collection of presets and also try to get more into working with my light-boxes and more “table-top” photography since around here it’s too cold to get out and take good pictures.

So I resolve to try some new things this year and just continue to have fun with my photography.  Will post things along the way and see what happens!

Just a camel. No reason.

Just a camel. No reason.

Collage of the Week: Leaf Pile

ImageThis past weekend we were working on getting the yard raked and ready for winter and of course my daughter had to take advantage of the leaf piles we were creating.  She and a friend spent quite a bit of time playing in the leaves and happily posing for photos which I took with my point & shoot Canon S95.  Even though I shot the photos in RAW they are never quite as nice as when I use my DSLR.  As I was going through them I applied some presets in Lightroom 4 to get the more flat “autumn” look – I believe I used the “Brannan” preset from the Instagram collection.  I really like the end result and one of the photos from the set (not pictured here) ended being the one I chose for my Christmas card.

 

Star Wars Celebration VI – Flickr Set

Boba Fett Waits PatientlyIron Man R2Lego Boba FettLego Boba HelmetTroopers in a Dune BuggyRancor
Lego Speeder BikeLego Scout WalkerSith Checking Out a CarTruckRebel Car With DriverObi-Shawn
Rebel CarLego SignSpeeder ShopBlue Milk CafeMy Lego MasterJabba's Food Court
DroidChewie PosesWaiting for the PanelMC David CollinsDave Filoni & Joel AronGeneral Krell Concept Art

Star Wars Celebration VI, a set on Flickr.

All my photos from the Star Wars Celebration VI convention from August 23-25, 2012 in Orlando, FL.

No Photo Time

Wow, my summer has kicked into high gear and I’ve had NO time to devote to my photography lately.  I’d love to be out shooting more but haven’t been able to fit it in.  So as a reminder to myself, here is my list of photo projects that I need to work on:

  • Edit photos from the Mu Daiko drum performance I attended at Caponi Art Park this past weekend
  • Finish Shutterfly photo book (Groupon) before August 14
  • Order canvases from Fabness (LivingSocial coupon) – set of 3
  • Continue working on photo club photo book project
  • Shoot the summer flower show at Como Conservatory
  • Pack gear for vacation
  • Start planning September outings
  • Keep blogging!

Groupon Stole My Stolen Photo

This photo, titled “Bucktoothed Determination” is my most “famous” photo.  I’ve made money from it (admittedly not that much) and it’s currently featured on the Como Zoo & Conservatory’s website in the zoo animals gallery.  I took the photo at the zoo in 2009 during an early morning photography class and this young orangutan was very active.

I sent this photo to the Como Zoo and they asked me for permission to put it on their Facebook page, which I allowed.  I didn’t realize until much later that they’d also put it on their website, without my permission or even crediting me as the photographer.  The use of it on the website doesn’t bother me too much – after all, it’s a non-profit, 100+-year-old zoo and I’m happy to support it since it’s a wonderful community asset.  However, since I didn’t realize it was on the website, I was quite surprised to open my daily Groupon email one day last year to find my own photo featured in the daily deal, a discounted membership to the zoo (which has free admission, but they sell memberships that are more like sponsorships).  I certainly didn’t give permission for it to be used by Groupon, and I still don’t know if the zoo gave them the photo or merely told Groupon to go find a photo from the website to use.  A few months after the Groupon was first offered, the deal was offered again and my photo showed up in the Groupon daily email yet again, as well as in another daily deal email that consolidated various deals from different sites.

So what did I do about this unauthorized use?  In the end, nothing.  My husband, an attorney who practices copyright & trademark law, thought I should contact both Groupon & the zoo to try to at least get a photo credit.  But I left it alone, partly because I’m not a professional photographer and do not have much in the way of “damages”, and partly because it’s a bit flattering to see your photo used.  So it’s a mixed bag for me – it doesn’t make it right that they used it without my permission but ultimately it doesn’t hurt me that much.  I really should start adding watermarks to my images, especially now that I’ve decided to make them more widely & publicly available, but I don’t feel that strongly about it just yet.  Other amateur photographers I’ve asked about this have the same variety of opinions on this topic.  Some really don’t care if their images are used without their permission and some care very much.  I would love to hear from others on this issue, especially if you’re not a professional.

Take it up a Notch

I’ve decided I’m going to reinvent this blog from an image-only display space into more of an actual blog about photography.  I’ll still be posting plenty of images but I’m going to start writing again too.  I’ve been feeling lately that this blog is too redundant since I do post my photos in so many other places – Flickr, Facebook, Google+, Instagram, etc.  I’d like to write more about my own interest in photography as well as display photos from outings and other events.  So stay tuned for upcoming changes!