“Once it’s too late, you appreciate what a miracle life is.” Bill Watterson
“You have entered an abnormal, lonely, and unwelcome new world where you are nothing but an island of sadness.” Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
“In this world of basic stereotyping, give a guy a big nose and some weird hair and he is capable of anything.” Frank Zappa
“Start by asking the question ‘Why’. This is because behind the question ‘Why’ there lies answers to your question.” D.S. Mashego
I got this software free with a photography magazine a couple of months ago and wanted to do a review of my initial impressions. I needed a new photo to use and since it was raining decided on a wet horse in bad light.
So after getting the newspaper and coffee I drove to the back of my local Aldi parking lot where the horses wait, contemplate the meaning of life and stare into space for a while.
A buggy soon pulled up just as it stopped raining and I said hello to two Amish girls, asked if I could take a few photos which they said was fine, and they told me their horse’s name is Firefly.
She’s hard to see because I shot wide but there is a woman walking towards me between the mirror on the right and the small tree. I said hello but was completely unprepared for a lecture on morality.
After standing there with her arms crossed and shaking her head for a while I looked at her and said: “What?” She mumbled a few things I couldn’t hear and I went back to trying to get a decent composition.
Then she said: “This is very disrespectful.” I told her that I had permission but she continued so I said: “Disrespectful to who, the horse?” This seemed to confuse her but finally she said: “It’s disrespectful to the whole culture.”
Now I was mad, my camera was acting up, it was starting to rain again and I had missed the decisive moment. I thought about fighting her but she was big and I wasn’t sure I could take her. Photo shoot ended.
ON1 Effects is fun to play with but in a way it’s a little like Photoshop. There are so many different effects and filters, each one customizable, that after a while you start to wonder if you should take up golf.
For this photo I used an effect called Automagic and one of the thousands of borders. I felt this would be a good one for Firefly to post on his social media and discuss ethics with his friends.
On my way home I wondered if Miss Manners was right, so I told the story to a girl at a convenience store who said the woman was stupid and arrogant. I would have used different words but okay.
Case closed, morality issue solved. Someone once said do not seek the truth, only cease to cherish opinions. Someone else said that opinions are like a wet horse in a parking lot, shoot first and ask questions later.
“It’s remarkable how we go on year after year, doing the same old things. We get tired and bored, and ask when they’ll come for us.” Yasunari Kawabata
So I’m driving down a backroad in the middle of nowhere when I see a van pull over and out of the corner of my eye I spot what looks like an animal up a tree. I quickly turned around thinking it might make an interesting photo.
It seemed that two large cats were stuck in a tangle of branches attached to a telephone pole. The woman with the van was noticeably upset and borrowed a ladder from a farmhouse nearby.
Now I’m basically a nice guy, I help old ladies cross the street and give money to the homeless though I’ve never rescued a cat and wasn’t sure if they really needed rescuing, but I got out with camera in hand.
Being a former house painter I’m very familiar with ladders and know that if you set them in the mud and climb to the top you end up on your ass. But after five or six tries I managed to reach the first cat and grab him.
The second one either liked the view up there or was panicking and refused to let go. Out of frustration I got off the ladder and pulled at the branches until the cat was within reach and pried his claws free.
The woman wrapped them both in a blanket to put in her van with two dogs who were watching the whole thing. I wondered what she was going to do with them and figured the dogs would probably have them for breakfast.
After it was all over she thanked me and my emotions were running high. I was annoyed that I didn’t take a few more shots, my mind was racing with thoughts of post processing and I had to pee.
There are a million stories in the naked county; this has been one of them.
“In the beginning there was Dust, and in the end there will be Dust, and in the middle there is Dust, Dust, Dust!” Catherynne M. Valente
“If you can not find the truth right where you are, where else do you expect to find it?” Dogen
“I love the rain. I love how it softens the outlines of things. The world becomes softly blurred, and I feel like I melt right into it.” Hagumi Hanamoto