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Archive for August, 2017

Silly Photographer, Lights Are For Inside

Disclaimer: This post is not intended to offend it was just a catchy title bases on a slogan from Trix cereal that was part of many of childhoods.

Now with that said…

One thing that always dumbfounds me is when people make things harder than they have to be. We see this in all walks of life and across ages and cultures. As a person who works with portrait and model photography, I’ve noticed this when is comes to outside shooting sessions.

I have noticed fellow shooters lugging around all sort of contraptions from soft boxes to reflectors and everything in between for a shoot in the local park, at a pool or whatever setting it may be. The problem it, it’s not necessary and in some cases might even be a negative.

Simply put, NOTHING, and I mean nothing, beats working with natural light, especially during the “golden hour” period. It gives off a glow that just can’t be replicated with strobe units and reflecting devices. Basically, because it looks -natural.

No disrespect to people who do use studio fixtures outdoors. This is my opinion and this is art. Far be it for me to ever say anyone’s art is “wrong” in any way. Do what you do and if you are satisfied, fine.

But I  have run into several shooters who instantly get defensive or cop an attitude about it. Some would state that people only prefer natural light because they don’t know what they are doing with studio gear. My response would be that perhaps those who want studio fixtures in outdoor shots don’t know how to use natural light. In fact, I would suggest that it’s harder to work with what is available rather than having something at your hands to manipulate things.

If you shoot natural light (whether or not you do studio work too) and would like to join a group that uses this method, check out Natural Light Photographers International.

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A Chat With Hula Hoop Superstar Katie Sunshine

After her recent appearance on the new version of “The Gong Show” I reached out to this talented young lady who is widely recognized as one of the major talents in hooping today.

Q: Where you always a performer or did hooping start this for you?

A: I wasn’t always a performer, in fact quite the opposite! I was painfully shy in middle school on up into my high school years, I was just one of those kids that took a long time to emerge from my shell. I never did gymnastics or dance or cheerleading or any kind of performance, really. Hooping has definitely done wonders for my self-confidence and my ability to be comfortable in front of a crowd.

Q: Before getting involved with hooping what did you want to do as a career?

A: I have always had a passion for art so from a young age I knew I wanted to be involved in the arts somehow. I taught elementary art for several years before leaving to hula hoop full-time. Now I work for a non-profit art museum in Little Rock managing the gift shop. I get work with local artists and buy their work for the store which I absolutely love.

Katie Sunshine of The Gong Show

Q: How much does it help with fitness and health? 

A: As far as I’m concerned, hooping is the best exercise there is! Hula hooping great for toning core muscles and burning calories. Plus, it doesn’t feel like a workout so you’re more likely to stick with it longer and not burn out. Lastly, hooping is a great stress reliever. It’s easy to forget how important managing stress is to leading a healthy lifestyle and because hooping is fun and challenging at the same time, it’s great a great way to let off some steam.

Q: What type of songs are your favorite for doing your performance?

A: I’m a music lover and I can hoop to just about anything! I prefer songs with a faster beat because it’s more inspiring to get the hoop moving faster.

Q: You are a business woman too. What has that been like for you?

A: The business aspect of my hooping has been a huge learning experience. I’ve learned the importance of networking and nurturing the contacts you make as a business owner. The hula hoop community is a growing one and there are lots of opportunities to work with other performers if you’re willing and able to put yourself in the position to meet new people.

Katie Sunshine hoops on stairs

Q: Can you give me an example of a unique or interesting experience you had during one of your shows?

A: Every show I do is a unique experience for sure but I definitely have some moments that stand out. One of my first ever performances for a live audience happened in Philadelphia at Citizens Bank Park. I was going to hula hoop with the Philly Phanatic on top of the Phillies dugout during the 7th inning stretch. The weather had been misting rain all evening and right before I walked out to perform, one of the employees of the park said “the top of the dugout gets really slippery in the rain, that’s not a problem, right?” But before I could even answer I had to go out! I was terrified the entire performance of slipping and falling off the dugout! Fortunately I didn’t fall, the Phanatic was a great hooping partner, and it was the biggest adrenaline rush I had from a performance!

Q: What other creative pursuits are you interested in or considering giving a try?

A: I have so many creative interests I feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day! As I mentioned above I love art and painting has been a passion of mine even before hula hooping. I love to paint, although I don’t always get the time to, and I also love ceramics. I’m still a beginner with a pottery wheel but I’m definitely hooked! I also play the drums and want to learn how to do tricks on roller skates

Q: You make your own hoops – how did you get started doing this?

A: I started making my own hoops to try to save money on all the hoops I was buying! Designing hoop tape patterns and colors is definitely another creative outlet for me.

Q: How did you start working with flames and where you scared of getting injured?

A: My first experience with fire hooping came about when a hoop-friend of mine brought her fire hoop to a gathering. I had seen fire hoops on Youtube and was interested to try. I had hooped for long enough at that point that I was very comfortable with my hooping ability so I felt I was ready to go for it. I was absolutely terrified of getting burned! However, with some encouragement and a tutorial from my friend I felt confident enough to try. And I get more and more comfortable hooping with fire every time I do it. Of course, safety is always first priority and I always make sure to take all the necessary precautions.

Katie Sunshine

Check out Katie’s official website at www.katiesunshinehoops.com

Daydreaming in Kyoto By Dan Brook

To say Dan Brook enjoys art would be understating things to an extreme degree. While he works primarily as a political science professor in California, he also has engaged in a series of projects doing everything from photography to writing literature.

One of his really unique writings is a publication entitled “Daydreaming in Kyoto”  which is mentioned on his Smashwords page as showing “this magical city through evocative and provocative haiku and photographs.”

Check it out when you have a chance.

Daydreaming in Kyoto

 

 

Easiest Screen Recorder Ever

In this age of video content and all sorts of media, it makes sense that a lot of us would like to save some content for personal use (reminder – for commercial could  be breaking copyright laws so be careful) from time to time.

So it is probably hard to fathom that doing so can be so complicated. But even though you may think you’ll need to either have a lot of technical skill or buy expensive software applicaions, there is one tool out there that makes it really simple.

If you have an Andriod tablet or phone, check out DU Recorder. You’ll be glad when you do.

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Ann Elliott and Her Spiritual Designs

If you’re interested in designs that fit this notion, you might like the work of Ann Elliot. Check out one of her shirts here:

https://www.etsy.com/listing/526990598/spirit-and-fire-worship-flag?ref=shop_home_active_3

ad

Info about the piece listed:

The symbols of the dove and fire are the appearance of the Holy Spirit in the Bible. The Holy Spirit appeared as tongues of fire on the first Pentecost of the birthing of the church. This image invokes the fire of God for revival, and the power of the Holy Spirit.

The image was drawn in pen and ink during a time of worship. God gave me this image as I was planning to move to China to teach.

Ann Elliott is from Michigan, USA. She lives and works in Shanghai, China.

Ann has led prayer, dance, and Bible training classes in Shanghai since 2015.

Ann has had a gift for drawing since she was a child. God inspired her to create art work when in worship.

Artistic Displays in Gardening

The Summer time is always a wonderful season to see flowers in bloom and the stunning elements of the natural world displayed. And with that being the case, what better time is there to showcase amazing and artsy garden areas?

Here are some samples of such areas for your artistic benefit.

Click the photos for links to the original source.

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Adult Coloring Books From Professional Photographs

During the last few years, the shelves in stores of all types have seen a major growth in the atsy and entertianing adult coloring book selection. Not only do these books offer an artistic option for people of all ages but it is also a good way to manage stress.

This is one of the reason’s why I’ve decided to begin selling copies of my photography pieces as pages for adult coloring. The shots below show examples from two of the categories (Landscapes and Models) in which you can find pics to order as such pages.

Price is $1.00 each per download.

coloring page

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