Project Time

When the weather turns cold and the snow starts to fly, I have to settle down and start organizing digital pictures.

There are duplicates and bad pictures that need to be deleted.¬† That’s time consuming but easy. However, some are organized by date and others by topic and this is where I run into trouble. In the long run, organizing by date doesn’t work because you have to know what year or month to look under to find anything. This works for birthdays and events you associate with a specific date but not much else.

So I think they need to be organized by topic and then by date but this part of the process sounds overwhelming. Plus, I have pictures burned to disc and saved on Snapfish but not anywhere else. Not to mention the stacks of prints waiting for albums.

If I get started this November, I should be all caught up in five or six years!

Who has tips for organizing digital photos? I would love to learn from your experience!

 

Merle

I got my first good digital SLR about thirteen years ago. The day it arrived, I took a walk with my folks and encountered my Uncle Merle doing something in his driveway.

I couldn’t tell you what he was doing but he was standing in the bed of his truck. I had a new toy and took advantage of the moment to grab a few pictures while he was distracted, talking with my dad.

I captured two images that late winter evening.

This one I call “Confidence.”

He always looked exactly like this. The flannel, the trucker hat, that stance. And he always had a cigarette in one hand and a cold drink in the other.

He was a capable man, a confident man. The kind of guy who could take apart an engine and put it together again without hesitation. The kind of guy who worked from sun up to sun down, often doing back breaking work to care for his family. The kind of man who could diffuse any situation with a funny joke or a smart remark.

He had the best sense of humor.

I also made this image. I call this one “Just Merle.”

It wasn’t long after that evening that Merle was gone. Taken from us far too soon in a work related accident. He was just 43.

I love these pictures and am so grateful that we have them.

This is why we take pictures- not just to show our friends on social media what we had for dinner. Not just to take up space on our phones or computers. Not just to say we have them.

We make pictures to capture a moment, a place, a person important to us. We make pictures so that we can remember the gleam in the eye of a person we adored on the anniversary of their death- like today. Merle died on this day and we still miss him, we still shake our heads in disbelief that he’s gone.

He still holds a place in our hearts and at the table at every family function, even if we can’t see him. He’s forever young thanks to these and other pictures.

Incidentally, the digital files appear to be long gone but luckily I still have the prints. So don’t just collect those digital images on your device. Print them too. You never know when a phone will die or a computer explode and your images will be gone.

I would hate to think I no longer had these pictures to remember him.

The Year In Pictures (Proof That It Does Get Better)

When the year began, this is is what I was photographing.

As you can probably see, my mood was dark and brooding. I spent hours stomping around in the cold and looking for anything I could find to occupy my mind and camera. My world was quite small too. My adventures took me around my own property and local state parks but not much further. Life was quiet and introspective. It was intensely focused on self betterment and on finding beauty despite the starkness and darkness that seemed to envelope my world both inside and out.

If you’ve been following this blog you know I’ve come a long way since January. In fact, I’ve come a long way since starting this blog over the summer. And I am thankful for that.

This has turned out to be a very good year. A beautiful year, actually. I’ve had so many adventures as well as time with friends and family and have learned a lot.  I’ve traveled near and far, spent countless hours relaxing on the back porch and met some special people along the way.

I still do some black and whites but have come to enjoy more playing with color and light. In fact, most of my recent black and whites exist because the color or light is poor but the conversion salvages the picture. Here’s what I’ve been photographing lately.

My eye reaches for happier things… I call this photographic proof that it does get better.

48416903_10209755131673433_8729230697920724992_nMy life isn’t what I thought it would be a year ago but that’s ok because it has turned out to be great anyway.  In fact, looking back on last January, it’s leaps and bounds more than I could have asked for or imagined.

I am cautiously optimistic that 2019 is going to be even better and I look forward to seeing what life has in store. I’m certain something special is around the next corner.

Happy New Year, my friends. Make 2019 amazing!