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Monday
Jun302014

The Faces of my Career(s)

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A friend of mine posted on Facebook recently, about me that "Some people have hobbies, you just go master several careers." and of course he was being funny and flattering and was really just referring to my tendency to research and superficially absorb many different things.   The operative term being, superficially.

I suppose that's the great thing about information dissemination in the age of Google.   In times of past, we'd have to study as an apprentice under a tradesmen for years to get the meat-and-potatoes of a particular trade. Even Da Vinci called someone Maestro, early on.  Now, enthusiastic self-published youtubers are happy to show you their skills.

That isn't to say it is reasonable to expect a person to gain a full mastery of a topic via 'googling it' but certainly it seems to be the way to overcome roadblocks.

In my programming career, I've used search engines plenty to solve errors, which are usually not errors in programming syntax or algorithms but challenges in the programming environment or frameworks.   Visual Studio Wonkiness, Apple xCode unexpected behaviors, etc. I know plenty of highly talented and skilled developers that use Google, Bing, StackExchange, GitHub and others to build nearly all of their code.   I think that pattern of find, copy-and-paste code will one day soon be replicated via a clever code-generating Neural Network.

For every case of the good-spirited, brilliant-minded problem solver helping solve others problems or taking the time to post solutions to common problems, there seem to be 4 or 5 other internet-forum-trolls who are just angry about something, contributing only snarkiness.   These were the mean kids in your kindergarden class that snickered out loud as you raised your hand to ask teacher a question.

Then, in photography there is this amazing wealth of information, much of it for free or cheap to teach you about anything you'd want to know about cameras, technique, software, publishing, printing, editing, etc.    It is the reason why there is such a flood of amazing photography.  Almost  everyone has access to the Ansel Adams equivalents of our time through social media, from which to study and learn technique.

Between the incredible pace of technology growth and understanding and the accessibility of the arts to everyday people like myself, I feel we are truly amidst another renaissance of sorts.

That is, of course assuming that the internet meanies don't squash innovation and expression with cynicism and wrong-minded comments and posts. 

 

Monday
Jun232014

Must... shoot.. in.. RAW!!

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I will freely admit that ever since I started using Lightroom a few years back, I've become somewhat of a "Raw Snob".
What's that?  Our refrigerator doesn't shoot in RAW?  It's crap!

But.. honey.. it's just a refrig... nevermind.

It's like I'm channeling Admiral Ackbar "It's a TRAP!" but instead "It MUST BE RAW!"
And yes.. I think I fell into the trap laid by some over-opinionated 'professional' who wrote on some photography blog somewhere that shooting in RAW + JPEG is stupid and needless...

Yet, now I find myself cleaning up/ archiving brackets of photos from 2011 and I have to say, I really wish I had out-of-camera JPEGs for these shots, so that as I delete the 40+ meg RAW files at least I'd have a pure example of the image for historical posterity.

So, what spawned this is I had turned off Camera RAW inadvertently and went out to shoot the Zinnias in my wife's garden.     At first I cussed alot when I saw the herd of JPEGS evacuating the memory card but then it occurred to me, 

"Dang, that camera has pretty good color!"
What's a Corellian to do?  For now, I guess it’s continue exporting to JPEG and deleting those RAWs from 2011.. :)

 

Sunday
Jun222014

Miles Versus The Dark Side

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Friday
Jun202014

The Seven Dwarves' Cottage

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Can't overstate enough how fun this ride was.     :)

Thursday
Jun192014

Jim the Ragtime Piano Plater

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Playing in the Magic Kingdom, since 1983!

Thursday
Jun192014

Making the Best of the View at Hand

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When I heard that the Polynesian would be under construction when we got there I was concerned that our view would be jacked up.

(not that you spend all that amount of time in the hotel room, anyway)

I actually didn't mind the view of the Bungalows under construction one bit. In true Disney fashion, when they are done they will fit in the environment as if they were always there!

Monday
Jun162014

Seven Dwarfs Mine Train

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This was a fantastic ride! Just enough thrilling to be fun for the adults but not too much so as to be overly scary for the little ones.

It is interesting b/c you can feel the train braking to keep a smooth speed and control descents.

Some interesting queue games as well.

If you can't get a fast-pass, it is still well worth the wait. Twice the sign said 90 minutes, and it was only about 60 both times.

Sunday
Jun152014

The Keynote Speaker @ the DragonFly Convention

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Sunday
Jun152014

The Colors of Summer

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Sunday
Jun152014

With Eyes to See

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One of the things about being a photographer is I feel that it makes you more aware of the environment and more appreciative of the small things in nature / around us.    

I think it's that spacey-ness that we try to medicate out of kids and that formal education tries to exercise from people and replace with structured fact and knowledge recall.
But, I digress..
This little guy was flying around the pool between various plants and after I held still for a bit, he let me get pretty close to snap a shot.  

The only (slight) bummer was I had the camera shooting JPEG, not RAW but I was pleasantly surprised by the JPEG's quality.