I never found a companion that was so companionable as solitude.
Henry David Thoreau
Nothing to add. Back home now. Had a great time helping my sister celebrate her birthday.
This weekend I am in Akron, Ohio helping my sister to celebrate her birthday. Normally, I stay out of these parts until springtime! When I landed in Akron, yesterday, it was a brisk 19 degrees. This morning, 12 degrees with wind chill of -6. Totally unheard of in Charlotte – thankfully!
I debated about going down to the Towpath, a walking path that goes from Akron to Cleveland. I kept looking at the weather and thinking that I didn’t want to be bothered. However, soon, I bundled up, headed out, and had a pleasurable hour walking around, taking photos, and enjoying the silence. There was no one around save for me. Near the end of my jaunt, I did run into a guy who was walking as well. I told him: I bet you thought you’d be alone this morning. He said: Yep! I have been for the last two days. You’re the only person that I’ve seen down here since Tuesday.
I guess that I’ve not lost so much of my cold hardiness! At any rate, it’s probably because it is such a different thing for me and I wanted to be out in it. Were I still living here, I probably wouldn’t have been out, but I’m just passing through. I’ll return to the warmer embrace of Charlotte, NC on Sunday!
Yesterday, I was walking along through the neighborhood, admiring the light, patchy fog. There’s one house that has 4 dogs and they are usually out in the yard and usually celebrate my passing with a chorus of barking. I pay them no mind, generally, because they are fenced in. You can see the fence in this photo.
However, I heard another sound, an unfamiliar sound coming towards me. I turned around, saw a dog running across the yard, in my direction. My first thought was, is he restrained. I saw that he was. OK. Safe. Next, I noticed the fog, the dog’s stare in my direction, the light. I raised my camera, framed, and shot two quick shots. Neither showing the dog facing me because he had already lost interest in me. Overall, probably about 2 or 3 seconds had elapsed.
My how time flies!
Normally, winters in Charlotte are pretty mild, this year being no exception. It seems that the plants know it too. During my walk, I’m noticing several plants deciding to sprout here at the end of January. Many trees have their springtime buds on and ready to go, though they’ve not blossomed just yet.
This is a nice message of hope and transition. Spring is on the way … at least here in the south! Heck! Daylight Saving’s Time starts in 2 weeks, which seems quite ridiculous, but I’m OK with it.
© 2013 Graham Glover
Thank you very much for your guide, “Taking Basketball Photos – A Detailed
Guide”. I’m a photography student, working through the NYIP course on
Professional Photography. Also, by day I too am a programmer.
Next Friday I will be photographing my first basketball game as a school
assignment. It will be a high school varsity girls game. I did some searching
for what folks say works for photographing basketball. I saw your webpage on it
and then found your guide. It’s nice work and very helpful. Thank you for
When I wrote my first draft Taking Baseketball Photos, it was more of a ‘interesting thing to do’. It got lots of hits. Later, after an almost complete rewrite, making it a PDF, and placing it prominently on the web site, it continues to get lots of hits, especially between November and March. This is no surprise, as it is basketball season. At least a couple of times a month, I’ll get e-mails from people who said that they have read the guide, liked it, and are about to use the techniques within. I always ask them to share their photos, but I’ve never heard back … until today.
I received an e-mail from a gentleman named Graham, saying that he had found my guide and that he was going to shoot a basketball game as an assignment. Graham is taking a photography course through The New York Institute of Photography, NYIP – I remember taking this course some 30 years ago! Of course, I asked him to share his results after he photographed the game and, finally, someone did! He sent me a link to his Zenfolio gallery with those shots. I asked him permission to share a couple of shots as well as the link to his portfolio of shots and he kindly agreed.
It was a nice group of shots showing lots of key moments captured, most with the ball in frame, save for a couple where that was not the intention. I chose these two because they had elements that I really liked and talked about in my little e-book. The top one, I like the intensity of the shot, the view of the defender’s eye over the shoulder of the opponent. The other photo, to the right, I liked because it contained the shooter, the ball going through the hoop, and the teammate waiting for a rebound, just in case. Add to that the fact there is enough depth of field to see the faces of the crowd. It all works.
Graham, thanks for allowing me to share and for giving me feedback on my book. I appreciate it!
Reflections: I remember when …
Over the years, I have so many photos of Hobbs that I could make a book, and I will. I didn’t intend to document his life, it just sort of happened. However, now in his later years, it seems essential. I’m watching him age, sometimes gracefully, sometimes not so much. He has his good days and bad days. Sometimes he’s full of energy, other times, seems lethargic, dazed, and confused. Today was one of those confusing days for him, or at least I think that it is confusion. Sometimes he’ll just stand in one position, stare, turn around, stare, and complete that loop several times before finally deciding to lie down or perhaps do something else. I know that his vision is not good, but sometimes he has no problems, other times, he’s bumping into things.
There have been a few times when I’ve come home and found him in unusual places, like in the closet. He was probably looking for me, couldn’t find me, ended up in the closet, and couldn’t figure out how to get back out.
I’ve taken to keeping a camera in the living room. In the above picture, he was about to get into his bed; however, he just stopped and stayed right there for about 3 or 4 minutes, doing nothing. Eventually, he got into the bed. Each morning, the sun shines through the window to the left and usually, he’ll get out of his bed to lie in the shaft of sunlight. I guess that the warmth feels good.
I think that, now, in his advanced age, it’s important for me to relish and photograph these different moments. I guess that is how projects are born. We photograph that which matters to us over time.
Last night, some time around 21:15, or so, I was hit by a SPAM storm. This has happened before, but the combination of Akismet and Sparm Karma 2 was generally able to keep it bay; however, last night, I suppose the torrent was too great and it caused my site to exceed my CPU allowance on my host. That said, they deactivated my site. This morning I called Bluehost, my hosting company, and asked what I needed to do to get back into business. They said that I had to install a ‘captcha’ plugin.
I don’t know about you, but I absolutely despise, no abhor, no make that – have a deep, visceral hatred for captcha. I find it very annoying when I run into it. It gets in the way of the commenting flow to have to try to read those crazed, squiggly, warped letters and numbers. So, I made a concerted effort to put into place something that would work, yet wouldn’t be an impediment to posting. I found GASP, which stands for Growmap Anti Spambot Plugin. Totally simple in design and function. It’s a simple checkbox that says: Confirm you are NOT a spammer. I’ve surrounded the box, in the above image, with a red rectangle.You’ll see it right below the comment button. If you forget to check it, you’ll be presented with a dialog box reminding you.
I hated to have to add it, but, SPAM is now a way of life and we need all kinds of ways to combat it.