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Some cool “cheats” for amature nature photgraphers

As a photographic artist, one of the things that might appeal to you is shooting stunning shots of some of nature’s wonderful scenes and animals. But, depending upon your location and ability to do some traveling, this may or may not be something that you can easily do. 

In cases in which you can’t get out to the wide open spaces in the American Western states, take a trip to Australia or the Arctic, or even check out the hot, dry African wilderness, there are still some “cheats” you can do  order to get some incredible shots of majestic beasts and landscapes.

1. Head to the nearest zoo  

If you hit these facilities at the right time, you can get some great shots on animals and the man-made scenes that are set up for them to stay. Sure, you might have to deal with crowds and fences but there are sections that you can work around such problematic elements. You might also come across some aqua exhibits that you can explore through glass.

Here are a few samples of my own  wildlife and nature photography at the Pittsburgh Zoo.

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2. Find a local park or hiking tail

Some of these will feature beautiful vegetation and waterways and you might occasionally get a photo of anything from a small animal to something as large as a deer or bear. Of course, in these cases you have to be a little more careful as that there is nothing to come between you and the animal if it decided to get a little daring.

These are a few of the pictures I have taken on trails.

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A new poetic style

As a person who loves to be inventive in my own way, it was a while back that having been inspired by the likes of the Sonnet, Limerick and Haiku, I thought about trying to develop my own poetic format. This is what I ended up developing. Who knows, maybe it will catch on.

I call it Singular Linearism.

The name is a result of the fact that it is made up only lines of a single word or single small phrase of less that 5 words. The full piece can be either 16 or 20 lines. And the structure is as follows:

If 16 lines –

Lines 1 – 3 – One word

Line 4 – One phrase of 3 to 4 words

Lines 5 – 7 – One word

Line 8 – One phrase of 3 to 4 words

Lines 9 – 11 – One word

Line 12 – One phrase of 3 to 4 words

Lines 13 – 15 – One word

Line 16 – One phrase of 3 to 4 words

If using 20 lines the phase should be at lines 5, 10, 15 and 20.

Sample:

The Seasons

Heat

Vibrancy

Exhilaration

Golden Rays

Earth

Trees

Breeze

Falling leaves

Cold

White

Ice

Glistening snow

Rebirth

Uprising

Sun

New life

 

 

Artist Micaela Buantello Enriquez

Art comes in many forms and it’s always a fun experience to learn about a new artist that you have not heard of before. This was the case when I came across the vivid and detailed creations of one Micaela Buantello Enriquez.

While this young lady does a lot of work in the horror genre (you can check out her Facebook here), she is rather diverse in her designs and certainly offers an intriguing style for her fans.

Below you can take a peek at a few samples of some of her pieces.

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Amy Oestreicher in her hit one-woman musical Gutless & Grateful

Following sold-out runs at The Triad NYC, The Bijou Theatre, United Solo Festival, Barrington Stage Company (Tony-Award winning William Finn’s Cabaret Series) and a nationwide tour from Washington D.C. to Hawaii, the captivating Amy Oestreicher will bring her hit one-woman musical Gutless & Grateful back to NYC at the internationally acclaimed Metropolitan Room on February 5th and 25th, 2017.  Through interwoven song and dialogue, performer Amy Oestreicher shares a primal piece of live-storytelling – weaving her near death experience and inspiring perspective with an eclectic set of songs, hilariously highlighting struggles, triumphs and “beautiful detours” in her life.

“Gutless & Grateful is not a story about a victim, but one of a survivor. Amy has channeled the pain of her experiences into something far greater.” – Michelle Alerte (Woman Around Town)

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Nominated for “Best Theatre Debut” in 2012 (Broadway World), and Bistro Awards Top Pick, and featured in Huffington Post, Gutless & Grateful, takes audiences on a musical journey of determination, grit and “guts” as Oestreicher shares her humor, her strength, and her soaring vocals with the world. Oestreicher’s script was inspired by the thousands of journal entries she kept over the six years she endured unable to eat a morsel of food or drink a drop of liquid.  Co-conceived by Oestreicher and musical director David Brunetti, the show is directed by Broadway-veteran Jerold Goldstein, also on piano.  “Gutless” also features the song “Still Alive” which was written for Amy by acclaimed composer David Friedman with lyrics by TV personality and lyricist Kathie Lee Gifford, after she appeared on NBC’s TODAY Show in 2011.

“One part moving testament to human indomitability, the other a thoroughly satisfying evening of song. While each element is strong enough to stand on its own, combined they illuminate and enhance each other. Rarely have I seen narration and song so artfully meshed, and Oestreicher’s likeability, good humor, interpretive skill, and manifest commitment to what she is saying and singing make us not only understand her story, but also feel it on a very deep level.”
-Roy Sander (critic for BistroAwards.com)

Amy had ambitious plans for Broadway, until she abruptly developed a blood clot the week before her high school senior prom. After being rushed to the hospital, her stomach exploded in the operating room, and after both her lungs collapsed, she nearly died. After waking up from a coma several months later, she was told she no longer had a stomach, and it was unknown whether she would ever be able to eat or drink again . After 27 surgeries and six of the past ten years unable to drink a drop of fluid, Amy’s digestive system was miraculously reconstructed and she learned that the human spirit heals through “gutsiness”, gratitude, and an overabundance of humor.
Amy Oestreicher is an artist, author, speaker for RAINN and TEDx, writer for The Huffington Post, award-winning health advocate, actress and playwright, eagerly sharing the lessons learned from a decade of trauma through her writing, performance, art and speaking.  Amy’s story and show have appeared on the TODAY Show, CBS, WNBC Cosmopolitan, Seventeen Magazine, Unmistakable Creative, Good Housekeeping, among others, and her writings have appeared in over 70 notable lifestyle, wellness, and arts publications.  Amy’s “beautiful detour” inspired her to create the #LoveMyDetour movement, a campaign inspiring people to flourish because of, rather than in spite of challenges- also the subject of her ’16 TEDx Talk and upcoming book, My Beautiful Detour. Oestreicher will also be giving another TEDx Talk this February in Virginia.

Oestreicher’s story is always inspirational and surprisingly funny.” – Paulanne Simmons (Times Square Chronicles)

Come for a moving night of song, stories and possibilities, all in a 70-minute musical comedy. Gutless & Grateful is no ordinary one-woman show, but a powerhouse production that leaves the audience in tears, laughing hysterically, and savoring every last bite as though it were their very first.

Amy Oestreicher in Gutless & Grateful plays the Metropolitan Room on 34 W 22nd St, New York, NY 10010, on February 5th at 7pm and March 26th  at7pm.  Doors open 30 minutes beforehand.

Tickets start at $24 and there is a two drink minimum.. Tickets and information are available at http://metropolitanroom.com/event.cfm?id=239500 and by calling (212) 206-0440

For more information on Oestreicher’s unique story and highly esteemed show, visit www.amyoes.com  and follow her on Twitter @amyoes or Facebook @amyoestr

The poetry of Johnny Cash

Anybody who has even a casual knowledge of music history knows about the one and only Johnny Cash. He was known for his deep words and often melancholic tone. But until recently, few realized that we also wrote poetic works.

In a book called “Johnny Cash: Forever Words,” his son collected 41 pieces that he had skillfully crafted and had them published for music and literary buffs. I got my copy a few weeks back but have not yet gotten much of a change to delve in.

If this is something you might like, check it out today.

It is available at retailers such as Amazon or can be ordered at your local bookseller.

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NFL star is talented artist

Here’s an interesting story from ESPN.

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Tips for Shooting Photos on a Cell Phone

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Ever new high end cell phone that hits the shelves promises, among other stuff, a better camera. And while these have come along very well since the early days of mobile phone based cameras, the truth is that they will never be able to compete with a real SLR of DSLR.

However, the limitations do not mean that you can’t take some really cool, high quality shots. Here are some notes to help you get the most out of your cell pics.

For macro photography, get as close as you can to the subject and use as little zoom as possible.

Keep the flash set to off at all times except when absolutely needed.

Get a good editing app, I recommend Photo Editor by dev.macgyver

Buy a cheap lens kit to clip on to your device. I found one on Amazon for $5.99 and it works good enough to do the job.

Know your cell camera’s limitations. Some are good in low light, some are better for distance…

No matter what you try, keep being creative.

 

 

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