Saturday, November 22, 2008

The two shall be one

There are multiple variations how to create this image with one of the most common methods is to place a ring in middle of a Bible and shine a light into it from the side of the ring[s] out of the view of the image.  My wife and I were chatting about its effect when she suggested using two rings to see how it looked.  Sure enough it created a romantic look with two hearts becoming one.  
I used the Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 on my D200 on a tripod.  Settings: f/5, ISO 800 1/5 second.  
If you try this, experiment with different aperture settings.  As you get closer to wide open you will notice more of the text will be 'blurred out' as well as parts of the ring will go out of focus.  I selected f/5 because I wanted both rings to be in focus.  At f/1.8 there is very little in focus outside the focus point.
Have fun and enjoy the weekend!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Guest post - QBQ QuickNote

(This is an image from a few years ago of me. We were in Florida and I was navigating my way through a small pond when the next thing I knew I was in the mouth of this large reptile. I had to get a picture of it [of course]. A tourist standing off to the side snapped this shot of me.
{OK, it is a staged photo of me but it is a fun story. ha ha}

One of my all time favorite books is QBQ, [The Question behind the Question, by John Miller]. Below is a QuickNote written by John and used with permission. If you never read the book QBQ, then I highly recommend you pick up a copy and read it or download it from

If you take the time and apply what you read, it will change you.

QBQ! (The Question Behind the Question) QuickNote

QBQ! QuickNotes™ may be forwarded by email to others or printed in their entirety with full credit given for personal and group use. © QBQ, Inc. 2008. All rights reserved.

What If Your Guy Loses?

Note: Please join John Miller and Dave Ramsey on Thursday, November 6th on The Dave Ramsey Show on FOX Business Network (TV) as they explore "Personal Accountability and the QBQ!"

Well, every four years in America we vote for the POTUS (President of the United States), and every four years on the day after there is weeping and gnashing of teeth by the losing side. And the truth is, the losing side is just about as large as the winning side. Amazingly, there could be 60 million people who vote for the ticket that does not win on November 4th, 2008. That's a ton of people who'll have a choice to make.

The choice to whine, complain, bemoan, and blame—or simply bring personal accountability to their daily walk by asking The Question Behind the Question (QBQ), "What can I do today to move on?" "How can I be my best on the job?" and "What can I do to serve people?" These questions enable those whose candidate remains a U.S. Senator, to avoid the humanness of finger-pointing, victim thinking, and discouragement.

And for the slightly larger winning side, where does personal accountability come into play? Will this group think that now all is right with the world? It's so easy to give a U.S. President too much power—in our minds—over our lives. It always makes me laugh when, with our massive, ever-changing, and complex economy, we think it's all about the man in the Oval Office. The truth is, economies go up and they go down—and then they go up again. By their very nature they are cyclical. When they're strong, the President gets too much applause, and when they slump he's buried in way too much blame. And so, in that vein, for the winning voters on Wednesday morning November 5, how dangerous these thoughts would be: "Yes! My guy won! Now I'll have a better job and more income and good finances and perfect health and a happier life and ... !"

Really? Does the POTUS have that much power, influence, and control? Would we, in a democracy, want him to? Can he give and take away joy? Will he help me get my personal finances in order? Will his tenure improve my relationships or keep me in shape? Do I really need my guy to be in the Oval Office for me to excel at my work, love and provide for my family, and contribute to the lives of others?

My wife, Karen, gave me a t-shirt that reads: It's All About Me! I don't think it was a positive statement the day she handed it to me, but in reality, aren't my successes and setbacks all about me? Isn't it about me taking ownership for my personal growth; me contributing; me setting and reaching goals?

Me loving life? Me loving my country?

Yes, regardless of who's in the Oval Office and what political party is in charge of Congress, it's really all about personal responsibility—individuals making good choices each day, and being accountable for those choices.

And for all of you who vote for the guy who doesn't make it, I say TAKE HEART! There'll be another election in 2012 and another round of advertising and debates. And that campaign will begin in January ... 2009.

Meanwhile, I recommend using what we call the Ultimate QBQ! - "What can I do right now to let go of what I can't control?" Remember, no matter who is elected as the next POTUS, for each American there is no debate: The answers are still in the questions, and personal accountability is still the secret to our success.

John G. Miller

Author of QBQ! and Flipping the Switch

Edited by Kristin Lindeen

QBQ! speaker/workshop facilitator

Please enjoy two QBQ!® interviews:

The Dave Ramsey TV Show QBQ! interview:

CBS-4 QBQ! interview:

QBQ, Inc.

Helping Organizations Make Personal Accountability a Core Value ™

11368 Nucla Street, Denver, CO 80022

303-286-9900, Fax: 303-286-9911


Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Always be ready for candid shots

 Some of my favorite shots are not of posed images but from random moments of sheer fun. The first image is when the little flower girl wanted to give her mom a gift in the middle of the couple exchanging vows.

The second image is another of my favorite 'candid' shots.  We were setting up the bridal party for the posed shots and out of the corner of my eye I noticed one of the 'little' girls walking toward an adventure.  White dress, no problem.  White dress, water and dirt, a challenge indeed.  :-)
This is what happens when you feed little puppies.  They get bigger and want to dance.

Photography is way too much fun to be considered legal.  Get out and enjoy life!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Fun pix -

I had the privilege of spending the afternoon with my daughter, her husband, and puppy yesterday and I was able to grab a few 'fun' shots.  There were many more that I liked but these are a few of my favorites.  In the first image it appears as if their puppy [boss] is kissing her but he was going after a chip that was on his nose a few seconds earlier.  He flipped it up and I was able to capture the shot and it appears as if he is kissing her.  I cloned out the chip that was in the air.
You can see the chip in this image.  It appears as if it is sitting on her head.  :- ) Actually it is floating in the air.
In this image, boss is going after bubbles which he loves to play with and does a great job jumping for them.  I cannot believe the agility he has especially with his size.  All the images were taken using the Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 and the Gary Fong Lightsphere II attached to a Nikon SB-800.  As I wrote in previous post, it does a very nice job in reducing or eliminating harsh shadows.  
Have fun and get out and capture the beauty of life!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Don't Quit!

A few years ago I created the base for this image. Recently, I added the image in front of the cross which represents the 'reward' [to us] of Christ not quitting. He conquered death and Hell when he rose from the grave! Even when times appear to be very challenging and it feels as if we are going to crack; keep in mind Christ did not quit. He provides us the strength we need to 'win' in life's challenges.

Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

The media would have you to believe your strength comes from a politician or government. The Bible states; Colossians 1:27 . . .; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:

Christ is the only hope to a world frustrated by poor decisions of business and government 'leaders'.

Please take the time to study the image. Regardless of your 'challenges' in life, Christ is the only hope to a world frustrated and scared over the continued negative news that pours from Wall Street. I once heard a pastor state that in his dictionary the word 'kwit' did not exist. He cut it out!

"Effort only releases its reward after a person refuses to quit." Napoleon Hill 1883-1970

"The only people who never fail are those who never try." Og Mandino 1923-1996

Proverbs 24:16 For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: . . .

It is Christ and Christ alone that will never leave you nor forsake you!