Archive for the ‘Fun Stuff’ Category

Nikon D7000

Nikon D7000 (Photo credit: jaredpolin)

My typical camera bag is showing its age. It is a great backpack and I’ve taken many times on driving and flying trips. These days, however, there is the added need of taking a laptop. When going by car, this really isn’t much of a problem. I put my MacBook in another bag with books, power cords and other materials. Taking two bags on a plane though, that’s a problem.

I started looking at larger backpacks that could hold the 17″ laptop. Holy cow they are expensive. I settled on one from Sam’s Club. The Case Logic DSLR Travel Pack. Though it is inexpensive, I am already seeing problems in the design. For starters, it doesn’t seem to have much room and there are no straps for the chest and waist. Hiking is going to become a problem. I don’t need to worry too much about the tripod as it isn’t making the trip (all aluminum and too heavy).

I have an idea, I’ll pack my existing bag in my suitcase. I stuffed it full of underwear, etc, placed it in the suitcase. It fits! Well, sorta. There is some room leftover, though not enough. It will have to stay home and I’ll need to get used to the new bag.

The biggest problem here is that I really do need two bags. I need one large enough for traveling. Stuff all my gear, lenses, cleaners, filters, laptop, etc. Rugged so I can take it on the plane. Once where we are going, I need a smaller one for hiking around, whether town or wilderness, in which I take only what is needed for that trip. I have tried a few other bags, results are crap.

Are there any bags out there that fit this bill? Perhaps a bag in a bag? Let me know.

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Cincinnati skyline

Cincinnati skyline (Photo credit: joseph a)

Today I did something I’ve never done. I work at AAA in Cincinnati and today was our annual Children’s Outing. This event takes many disadvantaged children from the tri-State area and gives them a day at King’s Island. This year was the 105th anniversary for this event. It is great community outreach and way for our company to give back.

This year, I was asked to take pictures of the kids during the event. Though I seem to be suffering from a cold, I thought that perhaps the sun would do me good. I’ve also taken pictures at various beer fests in Cincinnati and Columbus, so I’ve do events that require lots of walking around. Wow, I had no idea what was ahead.

Arriving on time, I neglected to put sun screen on. Big mistake as the temperature climbed to over 90 degrees. I did my best to stay hydrated, taking breaks inside every few hours. By 4 am, however, I was done. All pains and sunburned have, I barely made it home. Once cool, I started to get cold chills from the cold and sunburn combination. Yeah, I’m in a world of hurt.

No mater. I would do it again for the kids. To see their faces all smiles all day long at King’s Island is worth far more than price. To have their smiling faces thank you for letting them come is a warmth that will break the hardest heart. These kids have tough lives and it was good to give them a happy day. The event is one that all the kids talk about for the rest of their lives. Some were able to rise above their situation and look to give back through the event.

What a great day!

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It is time to mix it up on my YouTube channel. It is time for a video challenge like no other in the history of YouTube. What could that be???

This challenge has no real rules, no real goals, no prizes, only journeys, only growth, only fun. So, check out the video introduction for the video challenge.

Here’s the story:

  • Have fun. Make what you want.
  • Expand your thoughts and ideas. Learn new techniques. Grow in your skills.
  • Have fun.
  • Post your videos and keyword to June 2012 Video Challenge
  • Use content you never have before
  • Have fun
  • Don’t worry about the video being perfect.
  • Be in front of the camera, be behind it, use computer generated, make slideshows. It doesn’t matter.
  • Did I mention to have fun?

That’s it. That’s the whole thing. Go. Start. Learn. Grow. Post. Enjoy!

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It is mid-August and Summer is doing its best to hold on to the weather. The days are still warm, but without the humidity normally associated with Cincinnati. The nights too are cooler than summer. It is the yearly reminder that fall will soon be here and summer will be gone again till next May.

Fall is a great time of year for those who love the colors and terrible for those with allergies. Some do prefer the term Autumn, though somehow it feels more archaic to my ears. Coming from one who strives for the proper use of whom and laments the passing of Old English letters such as Þ and Ƿ this may seem odd, but the word Autumn just has a feeling of foreignness about it. This may be due to its French and Latin roots. This does make it a loaner word while Fall is more Germanic in etymology.

The colors will soon be returning, their level of brilliance determined by the amount of rainfall at the right moments. I’ll no doubt be out looking for chances to take pictures. It will also mean a cooler time Geocaching under the forest canopies. In all, a welcomed time of the year.

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In August, Miami, Florida is hot and very humid. It’s tropical nature can fully be felt this time of year. It should not be surprising that this time of year is also the slow season in Miami. Many hotels have too many empty rooms and prices for them are quite a bit less. So, of course I was in Miami for Top Gun Training.

Friday gave rise to some Geocaching, claiming the the Florida badge and dropping off a travel bug that I found in western North Carolina. I added some miles to its journey by dipping it in Geocaches in Virginia, West Virginia and around Cincinnati. That little one has been around quite a bit. Happy travels.

The training itself was incredible. How often do you get to spend time with not one, but three self-made millionaires in the ways in which they acquired it. For those you could see outside the discussions, leadership by example was quite evident. It is now time to put all those ideas, philosophies and methods into practice. Otherwise, the investment in time and money will have been for little.

Travel back was a bit of a nuisance. Leaving Miami late, the tardiness and annoyances kept falling like Dominoes. Late to Atlanta, waiting on the gate to be cleared, late leaving Atlanta and then having to wait 20 minutes for the bus to the long term parking lot. By the time I arrived home, I was not only very tired, but with the beginning of a bad headache. Such are the sacrifices of the Entrepreneur.

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It Is Hot!

Today in Cincinnati, it is hot. Depending on where you are, the heat index will feel like 102-110 F. Yeah, I know that isn’t a real temperature, but it is still stifling.

This seems to happen every year. Every time when the calendar says it is summer, it gets hot. Some summers are hotter than others. When the rain is less, the humidity grows every day. It gets hotter. The ground gets drier. Why?

Why does it get hot every summer? Why does it always have to be unbearable? I mean, come on. What’s up with that? Summer? Really? Why is it so hot in August and July?

No one seems to know. Algore Gump blames the cars and trucks. Some unbelievers blame that big fire ball in the sky. All I know it is hot.

Come back in 6 months when people are complaining about the cold.

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Yesterday was hot and fairly humid. Today, it was more of both. Basically, hair was on instant frizz. The winds out of the south to southwest, depending on the time. The wind was more like a hair dryer though.

In the morning, before all was too humid, my daughter and I were able to shoot some video covering how to shoot HDR images on a Nikon D7000. The sunshine made viewing the screen on the D7000 difficult, but moving to the shade for the setup solved that. I also learned that the flip does not focus, so getting too close was a problem. Oh well, live and learn. Will put the video together with the images and move forward.

Vacation is basically half over. Now it is time to start moving wake-ups back toward where they need to be come next week.

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