Thursday, January 26, 2012


Had a chance to go to the lighthouse in Rincon, Puerto Rico this afternoon. We caught a splendid sunset as surfers attacked the final waves for the day.

Monday, January 23, 2012


Working in Shadows

Changing perspective becomes a necessity, even at times a learning tool. Photographers learn to manipulate light, shadows, color, perspective, and textures. By managing these variables they can create new images of familiar objects. Since none of us sees things exactly the same, it's imperative to change our perspective from time to time. Thus we become familiar with other dimensions of the same object.

Lately, I've been fascinated by the shadows cast by the winter sun. It makes sense to notice it since the sun's angle is different in the winter months. It's taken me a long time to realize this. It could very well be that I was too busy before and preoccupied by other distractions. Regardless of the reason, I notice shadows now.

Photography affords me the skills required to makes sense out of shadow ambiguity. Life never clearly spells out the details. I suppose it makes living more interesting knowing that you don't have an eternity to figure it out. Learn to enjoy the details in both the light and shadows. You will be surprised by the results.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

What If?

From: "What If?"
Zion National Park
Springdale, UT

It's been slow in coming but I am working on a new card series: "What if..." This series features both my photography and simple one word thoughts. The card series is meant to jar and inspire. The premise behind the card is the phrase "what if?"

Playing with this concept as I was processing this image, I thought, what if Moses had an iPad, how would history have been different? It may sound extreme but it makes you think and get out of the rut, the familiar. Can you imagine Charlton Heston coming down the mountain with one iPad in each hand? He instructs the children of God to tap on screens and scroll down to view each new God given instruction. Each day the Israelites sync their iPads so that they are in accord (sync) with God's will for them.

Yes, it's outrageous, but it absolutely makes me think and I believe that most of us need to be jarred and cajoled so that we get our heads back in the game of living. Please bear with me while I indulge in this concept further these next few days.

The card sets will be coming soon and will be made right here in the USA by moi.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Dance With The One Who Brung Ya

Canyon and River
Zion National Park
Springdale, UT

In Texas, we have a saying: "Dance with the one who brung ya." Although it implies to stick with the people who have made you successful; it could also be construed to mean go with the skills that have brought you this far.

While our education system and our business world extolls the virtues of team work, what happens to those disenfranchised from the team? There are times in life when you have to go beyond the team. You have to dig deep and survey your own resources and what has contributed to your survival thus far.

As you explore yourself, you discover the different dimensions of your personality and your various skills. There are many things I do well these include but are not limited to: photography, public speaking (English and Spanish), writing, finance, and marketing. Some of my skills can be measured and some cannot.

This year, it's time for me to make profitable use of my skills. It's time to thread the needle and sew my skills into a product that will provide me with passion and income required to survive. It's an exciting time in my life.

Friday, January 13, 2012


Zion National Park
Springdale, UT

My friend Harry Sandler and I were discussing this morning how useful it is to revisit images over time. We both know that our skill palette changes and therefore gain different tools to interpret and render images. In essence, you not only develop acumen but also artistic maturity and confidence.

While everyone who has a camera can take a snapshot not everyone can turn a photograph into a meaningful living image. This requires time, skill, passion, and attention to details. As photographers, we know that some images will never win awards. However each image affords us an opportunity to sharpen, renew, and expand our skills. We draw from our maturity and experiences.

There are parallels that we can draw from in life. We live in a society that discounts the value of maturity. Like old buildings, we demolish them to make way for the new. If the Coliseum was in existence today, we would implode it simply because it is old. This lack of vision lacks perspective.

All of us should consider revisiting images and thought. In the context of time and experience, how would you do things differently? What have you learned? Would you make the same mistakes or would you be able to enhance the same situation today? Don't discount maturity.

By the way, although neither of us realized this today, both Harry and I, worked on images from Zion National Park that we took several years ago.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Tempus Fugit: Time Flies

Tiempo Mexicano
San Miguel de Allende, GTO, MX

Have you ever noticed how long twenty or thirty seconds seems when you stare at the clock? Put something in the microwave, punch in the time and just stare at the clock. Try it. The tick of each second seems like an eternity gone wild. The end doesn't seem to come quick enough.

Now remove yourself from the clock. Do the same exercise, but this time step away from the clock. Go and sit somewhere and forget the clock. By the time you sit and get comfortable, the timer will go off.

Each time that we eagerly wait for something to happen the same occurs. Time lingers while we wait. It really doesn't does it? It's the same measure but our perception is what is different. If we remove or provide ourselves with "distance", time flies. This is not a new concept. The Romans even had an expression for this: "tempus fugit, momento mori". Loosely translated this means: time flies remember your mortality.

Regardless of whether your stare at time or you ignore it, time marches on. What appears to be an eternity is simply a matter of distorted perception. Time measured in terms of our lives is not forever. Keep this in mind the next time you choose to stare at the clock. You would be better served to do something else in between the clicks and tocks or the LED movements.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Anticipation and Dreams


There's been a lot weighing on my mind this past week. As a seasoned salesman, I can sense when a deal of some kind is about to happen. Just have an overwhelming sense that things are about to change again for me this time for the better. The outcome is nebulous at best, but the feelings just wont subside.

After the prolonged sabbatical, I recognize the old feelings of anticipation and of a deals about to happen. The way things are shaping right now, I may have multiple options including pursuing my photographic interests. I remain guardedly optimistic and ready to stimulate the economy. I have monitored and pinched every penny trying to out manage even the best of financial managers. I've robbed Peter to pay Paul and made our dollars stretch. My wife has been right by my side shouldering most of the load throughout this ordeal.

The list of things we need to do is quite endless including carpet replacement and interior touch ups for the home and of course personal items like purchasing nice trousers and shoes to replace my jeans and sandals. Despite these obvious needs,  at the very top of my list is to continue to serve and help others. This is something I can't forget or ignore. Each one of us at some point in his/her life, needs help. It simply is not enough to offer words of sympathy or to pawn this off to some agency. We need to act and help. We are called to do so. To this extent, my experience has humbled me and renewed my conviction to serve and care through my involvement in the Lions Club.

My generation was challenged many years ago by young idealistic President John F. Kennedy. He spoke these words: "Ask not what your country can do for you, but ask what you can do for your country." For a brief moment in our history his speech sparked volunteerism amongst a generation. The same generation participated and watched as it put a man on the moon. 

In our generation, we also saw the fruition of another man's dream, Dr. Martin Luther King. His dream emboldened us to overcome the shadows of bigotry and poverty and to embrace the concept of our founding fathers' that all men under God's eyes are created equal. The fulfillment of these dreams required work and sacrifice. It required the participation of many. Collectively, we still can make a difference by serving others.

We achieved many great things but lost our way down the road. Our idealism gave way to our new found affluence and our visions gave way to political and ideological cynicisms. As a country, it would be wonderful to experience the same sleeplessness over the idea that something good is going to happen to those who have had little reason to hope and have been left behind. We should want to feel excited that we can make a difference in someone's life and in the world. 

Thursday, January 5, 2012

More Change

Winter Blast
Keller, TX

Change is constant in life. Each day someone is born and someone dies. Someone laughs and someone cries. Nature provides its own change: sun, clouds, rain, drought, day, night, dawn and dusk. We live with change and mark our calendars by it. You might say it's ecclesiastical.

Since December 21st, the days have begun to get longer. For me and others like me, it's significant. Unlike Count Dracula's sidekick, Renfield, some folks prefer light and lots of it. Winter forces repose with its absence of light.

The mornings are beginning to change again. Albeit prematurely, I already long for spring, a time of spiritual and natural renewal. Things are changing around me but spring will always follow winter and precede summer.

Although I've been impatient most of my life, I recognize that change is part of life. Sometimes, I simply must wait for change and the promise of spring. It has felt like a long time, but I can sense it and feel it.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Walking the Fence

Walking the Fence Line
Keller, TX

The new year affords us the opportunity to start fresh. As a photographer, it's an opportunity to sharpen old skills and learn new ones. I spent the greater part of yesterday trying to learn some new iPhone techniques from Dan Burkholder's recent tutorial in Petersen's Photographic Digital Photography Guide.

The results were good but the perfectionist in me knows that I still have to master more techniques, patience, and tools. I have a whole new year ahead of me to learn.

Life's lessons require time. Our ability to learn does not cease at a particular age. Learning requires practice and motivation. It also requires time.  If you are teetering on the creative fence make the commitment that creativity requires. You might surprise yourself with the results.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Like Me

See The Light
Keller, TX

As as salesman my vocation was simply to get people to both like me and my products. Not only was that my job, but quite frankly it was was my style. It truly worked for me. I mean after all what's there not to like about me? To me, it was as simple as the old jingle I use to sing as a child: "I like people and people like me."

My daily walks afford me with both an opportunity for exercise and self-discovery. The other day I was more introspective than usual. I decided to change my perspective and look up inside the covered bridge I walk through every day and I noticed this lone light bulb. That's when it dawned on me. I am bothered by the fact that people don't always like me. In fact some aren't convincible and will never buy. Some folks just don't like people and they certainly don't like me.

At first, the notion was hard to bear. They don't like me and they don't care. The more I thought about this, I could feel the burden of trying to please seem to grudgingly ease off my shoulders. Not everyone is going to like you let alone understand your motives. It doesn't truly matter and it certainly is not going to change your life drastically. What does matter is that you like yourself and enjoy what you do.

In part, my photography, releases me from this phobia. It enables me to create and enjoy my own creativity. It grants me the opportunity to like myself. It reacquaints me with the gifts that I enjoy about myself and allows me to befriend myself.

You might say that it's more important to be friends with yourself first than it is to be friends with anyone else. If you do this, you will find the value of true friendship. You will learn why we need each other to survive and thrive. As I stared at the light bulb under the rafters of the covered bridge, the one in my head went off. It's more important to accept myself at this stage in my journey than it is to get others to like me.

This does not mean that I no longer will care. It simply means that I need to value both. However, I can't waste time trying to get someone to like me or my work. In the end, what matters most is that I like me and enjoy my work.

Having said this, I have a favor to ask. It would be awesome if my followers from Australia would contact me and get acquainted. It still is good to make new friends. Keep in mind we are all different and some more capable of giving than others.