Humpday Humpdate

Well, it’s Wednesday, I’ll give it that much. Honestly, though? The days are just sort of blending together for me recently.

I mean, at any given time, one of exactly the following thoughts is going through my head…

  • I’m tired.
  • I’m sore.
  • I wish Lexi and Sloane would admit that they’re meant for each other, and what ever else happens, they’ll get through it if they just focus on that.

Yeah, Grey’s Anatomy got its hooks into me a while back, and I’m too far gone to care.

Anyway, apart from the above, and my shockingly consistent use of Instagram and Twitter, here’s what’s been going on…

The quest for new gear.

I’m slowly getting the cash together to pick up some new photography gear. And when I say “slowly,” I mean it. Being a responsible adult sucks, and since I’m still considering photography a hobby at this point, it’s pretty much dead last in my budgeting process.

That’s okay, though, because I honestly don’t know which sort of gear I should pick up first. I’m torn between lights (so I can work indoors when the weather is hideous), a new lens (probably a zoom telephoto for wildlife), or a filter or two for my existing lens (so I can do long-exposures in full sun).

My gut says “go for a new lens,” but my experience says “you will not go outside during the winter, so buy some lights.”

The news can fuck right off.

For those of us who aren’t stupid or sociopaths, the world kinda sucks right now. I won’t go into the specifics, both because you probably already know them and because this blog is already enough of a downer with all my “I’m tired”-themed ramblings, but…yeah. Things totally blow right now.

Not too long ago, I made a daily habit of reading 50 to 100 news articles across several reputable sources, but as of today the number is basically zero. And I’m fine with that.

Beyond the pure, elemental basics of survival, my first three priorities are family, photography, and my health, and lately I barely have enough energy to handle those.

Not my job.

Related to the above, my patience with people has reached an all-time low, and my willingness to deal with shit that’s not in my job description is next-to-none. For instance: I’ve hung up the phone twice this week when the person on the other end couldn’t answer a yes-or-no question.

Other Person: “Thank you for calling [Insert Store Name Here], this is Rick, how can I help you?”

Me: “Hi, do you have any [Insert Item Here] in stock?”

Other Person: “We actually have a sale on [Insert Other Item Here]. Are you look–“

Me: *click*

Some people might find that rude, whereas other people don’t want to hear a story when a simple “yes,” “no,” or “I’m not sure, let me check,” would suffice.

Anyway, that’s how my week’s going.

Good times!

Three things I’m shouting into the void

There’s a recent trend among bloggers and the Internet famous to write posts with titles like “Three things I want you to know,” and text which is just a little more involved than a list. And since they look like just about the easiest damn things to write, and it’s been two weeks since my last post, I’m jumping on that bandwagon like it’s the last burrito of the post-apocalypse.

Of course, since nobody actually reads this thing, it’s more like yelling into the void than sharing (allegedly) interesting tidbits about my life, but whatever.

I’m doing Instagram things.

I’ve been on Instagram for a while, but only started really using it about a month ago. A lot of my photography is going up there these days. My goal is one new photo a day, and so far I’ve been making that happen, which is kind of surprising given my track record when it comes to social media. Even more surprising, though, is that people are following me and my photos are starting to show up in the “Top Posts” for some of the tags I’ve tossed them into.

What I’m trying to say is that you should follow me over there. Follow me, like my stuff, comment on it. Pretty much anything you can think of to boost my numbers and inflate my sense of self-worth would be totally sweet.

I’m still trying to figure out what sort of photographer I am.

I realize I’m contradicting myself here, but I’m taking more photos of flowers, trees, and other “nature” type things and I’m kind of enjoying it. Like, a lot. In fact, the photo on this post is probably in my personal “Top Five.”

That’s…a little frustrating, actually. I mean, I’ve been taking photos (and taking photography seriously) for six or seven months now, and while it’d be insane to expect to know everything about the subject, it seems reasonable to assume that I’d at least know what I like at this point.

But no. No, one day I’m out shooting power lines, the next it’s architecture and candid street photos, and then later on I’m up close and personal with marigolds and begonias.

I’m trying to assume that this is all just part of the natural, creative process of anyone just getting into something like this, but I’m leaving open the possibility that I’m just a loon.

I’m still not sleeping, I still hate winter.

Despite one or two nights of exceptions, I’m still not sleeping much at all. So that, you know, sucks. Also, the first day of autumn has come and gone, putting me that much closer to another winter in New Hampshire. I’m going to do my absolute damnedest to get outside despite the cold and the snow, but…

Look, it’s really hard for me not to just start stringing together expletives and slamming my head against the keyboard when I think about winter. It’s seriously, absolutely impossible for me to even pretend to sound positive about it.

I hate winter. I hate everything about it. I think I even hate the people who enjoy it, just on general principle, though probably not, or at least not very much.

Whatever, though. I’m just going to tough it out. Get some decent boots, buy a solid base layer, then go out with my camera whenever I manage to summon the will. Which, if previous years are any indication, won’t be very often, but I’m going to give it my best shot.

Anyway, that’s what I want the two and a half of you reading this thing to know.

Occasional color

I’ve been shooting a lot of black and white lately, and I’m pretty sure that’s a thing I want to keep doing.

Maybe it’s the prominent interplay of light and shadow, maybe it’s that it looks more like “art” to me, or maybe I just plain don’t “get” color–whatever the reason, my photographs tend to end up monochrome.

I do shoot a little color, though. Like the photo over to the right.

I don’t know if it was the light when I took this, or maybe it was the funky color at the heart of these (to me) unremarkable flowers, but I shot it knowing I’d turn it into something more “painterly” than “real.”

Does that make sense?

In other news, I seriously messed up my back on Saturday morning, and thus didn’t have the sort of Labor Day Weekend I was hoping for. I spent most of it flat on the couch watching Netflix, counting the hours between doses of over-the-counter anti-inflammatories.

My back’s doing much better today, though, so I’m…still flat on the couch watching Netflix?

Whatever. Don’t judge me.

Writing, playing, and not sleeping

It’s been a weird few weeks.

I figure I’m getting about one good night of sleep out of three, where “good night” means about six hours of being dead to the world. The other two nights? Yeeeeaaaaahhhh…let’s not even talk about them.

Insomnia blows. And it’s blowing extra hard for me right now because I’m stuck in a writing project I’d really like to finish, but it is kind of impossible to even get into when I’m so sleep-deprived I’m getting motion hallucinations, and the few functioning brain cells I have are busy counting the hours to the next time I can put my head on a pillow.

Wow. I just had a whole, minute-long blank stare at the screen after typing that last paragraph. Jesus, I’m screwed.

Anyway, what little writing I’ve managed to do has been pretty fun. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’m having more fun with it than I’ve had in years, which is saying a lot. Or would be, if I didn’t have this nagging feeling that it’s nothing but gibberish and I’m too tired and out of it to notice.

Whatever. At least I got a new phone.

My old one finally hit the glass ceiling of available memory, and Android’s pretty damn cranky when that happens. Updates wouldn’t download, I had to clear cache and reboot multiple times a day–it wasn’t fun. So, I dug deep and pulled a couple hundred bucks out of my ass for a new phone.

A new phone which has a new, much nicer camera than my old one.

Oh, happy day!

Even with the whole lack of sleep thing harshing my mellow, I’ve been having a blast with this thing–going out every day, experimenting with all the available settings, and generally just playing around.

I’ve mainly been posting over on my Instagram and Facebook profiles, but if you don’t follow me there, I’ve thrown a few of my photos into a gallery here…

Some of it’s pretty weird, but, as I said, it’s been a weird few weeks.

Vacation

Tomorrow, my daughter and I head off to a friend’s place for a week. It’s something we do every year–hang out, play games, have fun. This year’ll be much the same, but we might toss a road-trip or two into the mix. We’ll be only a few minutes drive from a relatively large city (well, New Hampshire’s largest, anyway), and I’d love to run around it with my camera.

Speaking of cameras, here’s a photograph I posted recently over on Instagram…

I’ve been using Instagram a lot lately, mostly because I’ve been really using my shitty, smartphone camera a lot. In fact, it’s kind of become my favorite way to shoot. Part of that’s down to convenience–it’s always with me, fast to use, and doesn’t attract the attention that my “real” camera does.

Mostly, though, I’ve found that I can actually take a pretty good shot with it, if I pay attention. It doesn’t work for everything I want to do, but it does for enough that I find myself shooting most every day.

 

And on that note, I’m off.