30 April 2008

"Huzzaah," cried all the Mac fanboys (Billy, Sam, Marcus, etc)!

Well, it happened. Not much to do now but accept it and run with it.

1.) The screen. It's brighter and sharper from more angles than anything else I could find (Thinkpad, you lost yourself a sale because I couldn't find ONE of your notebooks in ANY stores around.)
2.) The price (haHA! not!)
3.) I'm excited to see how much smoother the OS system is. From what I understand, Macs run differently (more efficiently?) than PC (regarding RAM and whatnot) so I wanted to see this.
4.) I realized that there's really not much I (we) do that's NOT related to photography/music/video (other than processing words) so why not get something that's a well known workstation for those items?
4.) I was not at all looking forward to Vista. Period.

There are more (see below), but those are the main ones. In general, it seems like a better personal media workstation than any PC I've seen. I liked that.

Macbook Pro Features & Specs

15-inch widescreen (1440x900)
2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
2GB memory (soon to be 4GB thanks to Crucial.com)
200GB hard drive
Double-layer SuperDrive (which is what they call a DVD/CD Burner)
NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT with 256MB

So that's it. This is our P(eace)C(orps) workstation. We'll see how it goes. I'm still not even sure I can get used to the "minimize/restore/close" buttons being on the left much less a completely new operating system. I guess I figured, I'd have to learn a lot with Vista so why not do that learning on something that seems fun.

Next Day Update: Well, after a few brief hrs of use, I'm afraid to say, I'm enjoying it a lot. I still don't fully understand the operating system and how the icons and bar at the bottom and top interact. I need to read. However, even on the standard 2GB of RAM it flies. It starts up and/or shuts down in 4sec and installs/updates things super easy and super fast. It came ready to roll. The hardest part was choosing a user name and password :)

28 April 2008

Jamaica - July 01, 2008

It's official. We have 9 weeks until we leave on our 2-year all-expense-paid trip to Jamaica. Wow.

To quote the eloquent Martin Lawrence, "This shit just got real."

If this hasn't made sense up to this point, we're joining the Peace Corps. This might clarify things.

Could everyone who reads this do me a favor and comment below? I know who some of you are, but there are several hits on my sitemeter every few days that I don't recognize and it would mean a lot to hear from everyone. It doesn't have to be much, just "(So & So) here" or something like that. Thanks.

Hiphopopotamus vs. Rhymenoceros

Seriously. I really find them funny.

Albi (the rascist dragon)

You'll Never See This, But...

Happy Birthday, Dad!

Had I had a choice, I could not have picked a better dad.

24 April 2008


(People show Wii-intensity in many different ways.)

I went to the dePaula's last night for Jenn's birthday. It was fun. We played Wii, poker (not me because I dislike cards so much), and ate cake and chicken tenders. I also got Cara to walk around with the external flash and point it places while i took pictures. A good time was had by all... except for the Wii noobs who broke several things.

I like the dePaulas. They have a good movie collection. I think I could talk to Marcus about movies or music or something else for a extended periods of time.

Below is the ever so helpful, Cara and her somewhat difficult to catch on camera husband, Dave. They're great.

(Apparently, this is "poker.")

(What the Wii sees.)

OH! Marcus is notorious for giving inane greeting cards, so I tried to repay the favor with this beauty (sorry Jenn)...



Anywho, thanks for the cake and sandwiches, guys.

23 April 2008

Some Random Stuff from ThinkGeek.com

I love this website. These are just a few items I saw on the "e-newsletter" I got. I just love the originality of all their stuff.

The Earbud Speakers

The Cassette Tape MP3 Player

And finally, the Optimus Maximus keyboard. I remember hearing about these a while back and now it exists... for $1600! (113 independent LCD screens (i.e. 1 per key))

22 April 2008

Happy Bearthday, Todd

(No, I have no idea what I was thinking)

You don't know how badly I wanted to find the full size of this little gem (but it appears that Todd hasn't kept up with his web hosting... much).

And finally, this is possibly one of the only existing photos of current Todd. Possibly.

Union Station

Union Station

I really feel like this is my most balanced and refined (HDR) shot thus far. I like it.

(Thanks to my awesome wife for accompanying me and being such a lovely assistant!)

21 April 2008

18 April 2008


Donelson Bowl(ing)

There's just something really enjoyable about taking a rather ordinary scene/object and turning it into something (somewhat) extraordinary. I'm sure someone's said that more eloquently than me, but farts to that. I don't know where I fit in on this scale of "transformation," but I enjoy it. I think I'll keep doing it.

(More details about the photo (and larger version) on Flickr.)

17 April 2008

Anybody want an SLR?

Just saw this on Craigslist. it's a SWEET deal for a Nikon D70 (which is almost exactly what I have). There's no lens, but you can get a kit lens for less than $100. Plus I bet he'd take $350 for it. Really good deal.


(If you have any questions about it call me. 715-7354)

16 April 2008

Lunch: Wed, April 16, 2008

(Chicken Sandwich and Bite-size Snickers not pictured)

Yeah. That just happened.

This is life.

(This is not my shot. I came across this today while browsing Flickr.)

Photo by Dejon.

The detail in the shot is unbelievable. Hardly looks like a person.

15 April 2008

For Scott...

Customize here. (There's plenty more where that came from, Scott.)

(I assume the DCI logo is free for commercial use.)

14 April 2008


Couple things...

a) I sold my first item on RedBubble the other day. Oddly enough, it was a "Poop Back and Forth" t-shirt from the movie You and Me and Everyone We Know and not one of my photographs. Ah well. (Here's the other one.)

b) Omitted until further notice.

c) These look fun. Maybe if you aren't really into photography (or even if you are), these short little video portraits sound like a nice (short) way to document times: Long Portraits.

11 April 2008

The Dinner Party

For everyone's Office that got interrupted last night with a tornado warning...

10 April 2008

In case you missed this episode. Baldwin is just incredible.

09 April 2008

Tokyo Police Club (Part Deux)

Josh Hook

Well, this was the 2nd time we saw Tokyo Police Club here in Nashville (I'm pretty sure they've only been here twice though). It was a awesome show. Totally different from last year's. I wish I could write a lot more about it but I just don't have the time. Sorry. Hopefully the photos and video will be enjoyable on their own without my gift of speech... and writing.

(Check out the LEDs they brought with them. Quite Epilep-tastic.

(If you click on these, there's a link to view it full sized... if you like)

The YouTube Generation Above the Show TPC's Guitar Chest

This was the opening band, Eagle Seagull. They were easily one of the most enjoyable opening bands I've seen.

07 April 2008

Variations on a Jesse (with LAB color)

I just thought this was a good photo to show some color processing I've liking lately. These don't produce real crazy images or anything "hdr" related ( :) ), but the more you get into this stuff, the more you appreciate subtleties. (In fact, it's kind of like drinking in that way... bear with me. Like when you first "learn" to drink, you want to see how much you can drink and you think it's so awesome drinking a lot. However, the more experienced a drinker you get (hopefully), the more you realize anyone with a mouth can get drunk. It's the person who can drink and handle it and NOT go overboard who's more respectable.) Anywho, the first image is the original straight out of camera shot. Pretty dog gone awesome shot if you ask me, but the white balance is a little off, so some of the colors get washed out.

This first shot is using LAB color mode and enhancing the colors that way. I've just started messing with this, but it can be incredibly useful. Here's a pretty good example of fixing a washed out photo. The shot below is my finished. It's not a drastic change, but I don't want something drastic for this type shot; subtle is the name of the game.

You can see how the colors are just a lot more saturated. And using this (LAB color) method is probably the least destructive way of saturating the colors. (If you have photoshop, that tutorial above will show you everything in a manner I'm not willing to make the time for.) Here are a couple more examples (with a touch of unsharp mask) (notice how no highlights are blown and no shadows are lost):

This next one is a variation on Cross Processing (without the yellow). I guess it looks more like some type of film. My knowledge of film is quite limited, so I'm not sure which type this resembles. But I like the slightly off-balance colors. The blues are sort of inverted, whereas the blue is taken out of the highlights and increased in the shadows (an inverted Blue curve does this).

I like this option a lot because it just really takes the date out of the photo. It's kind of like B&W in that it makes the shot almost "timeless" (in the sense that it's hard to place it in time due to it's colors/lack of) (I think the Blue Blockers help make it timeless too :) ). All of those shots from my birthday were processed like this. It obviously takes a little extra care because just like anything, you can get a little crazy with it.

Anyway, both of these post-process methods give you a lot of color/look options. Pretty cool stuff. I never ceased to be amazed at the amount of "invisible" information present in a jpeg/digital photo. It's just incredible.

04 April 2008

Nashville Street View is Up

Has anyone noticed that Google Maps has the Street View option up for Nashville? Incredible. They went EVERYwhere! Check it out.

The Shelby Bottoms Bridge

Shelby Bottoms

Hopefully these will make up for my crap-ly previous attempt.

And the saddest picture of the day? This... on the new bridge.

Jesse claimed that mound fair and square.

I think I forgot to mention that I did get Tripod in. I was a bit worried about it's size and weight at first, but after a few hrs of use I'm loving it. The ballhead is incredible. I'll post some pictures of my own soon.

03 April 2008

Firefox 3

The final beta version of firefox is out! It definitely seems to be running faster than 2. Give it a shot.

Firefox 3 (Beta 5)

Also, there some contest on a photography blog I check out and to enter I just put a link to their site on my blog, so, booyah...

This Week in Photography

02 April 2008

Secret Bridge

Have you guys seen this giant hidden suspension bridge over by Opryland and Two Rivers Park? It's blocked off from the Two Rivers side, but the bridge is definitely done. It's crazy huge! I'm excited to go back over and check it out. We were running late so we didn't have much time. And just to prove I ALSO mess up plenty when taking pictures, here's my crappy shot of the bridge (taken at ISO 1600 instead of 200)

At 200mm

This zoom is really fun. I haven't had any zoom since I got my Nikon. Just like with any lens, there are certain shots you just can't get without a certain amount of zoom/DoF compression. I'm liking it. Not to mention this lens seems to render color and sharpness extremely well.

Also, I'm not sure if you've been on Google Earth lately, but wherever you go on there, you'll find submitted pictures of locations. So I've been putting some shots from Bonnaroo up there hoping to get them on Google Earth...


The film-like processing on them is really enjoyable to me. I'm only uploading them at 300x500 because Panoramio doesn't seem to have any "protection" or even a good way to get in contact with the photographer, thus I only put up the small size and watermarked them. Anywho...