About this blog title

I cannot tell you how many times I have shown up at events with a couple of cameras around my neck, a gadget bag full of odds & ends and a lighting kit and have been asked that question. If it happened once every few years, that would be one thing. But it happens a LOT. It's like getting pulled over by the police and he's standing there with uniform, gun, flashing lights and asking him "Are you a cop?" I would love to come back with a witty reply, such as "No, I am Jesus. Don't you recognize my beard?" However, I cannot be that rude.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

New guitar for my birthday

Last Sunday, April 13th was my birthday. I spent the weekend in Philadelphia with Niece N and her family. I had a most wonderful time. While there I went to Yhe Classical Guitar Store where I bought a new guitar. It is an Alejandro Cervantes signature series Master model with cedar top and Ibdian Rosewood back an sides. The instrument is an absolute dream. I should be in bed right now but I was playing a couple pieces by Francisco Tarrega and the quality of the sound was so fantastic I had to take time to write this. And also to thank God for having blessed my life so much. I thank you dear Lord for all you have provided me. Family, work, talent and more. Happy Easter everyone.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Blue Moon at Art's Jug restaurant in Watertown NY

Sister S from Tucson , AZ was in town for Few days so we had dinner at Art's Jug in Watertown. I had a Blue Moon beer. The light on the bottle caught my eye so I snapped the photo you see here. As usual when I snap something like this the waitress and others often wonder what exactly am I photographing?

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Snow banks in April

It is April 2nd and we have a paltry 42 degrees temperature out doors. We had more fuel oil delivered yesterday at $4.19 a gallon. Unbelievable! I snapped the photo shown here in Pulaski, NY just at the RT81 off ramp at Byrne Dairy.
Snow banks at Byrne Dairy parking lot in Pulaski, NY.    photo by Gary Walts

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Local guitar gigs

Recently with the assistance of Karen Lago, librarian at the Depauville Library in Depauville, NY, I got a NY State arts grant to do ten local classical guitar concerts & workshops. Each will take place at a library in Jefferson County. I did one in Alexandria Bay in February. I did the 2nd one this past Wednesday at the Lyme Free Library in Chaumont. The photo here is a sign on the street outside the  library in Chaumont. That event went pretty well there were about a dozen, maybe 15 people turned out for that.
Sign outside3 the Lyme Free Library in Chaumont, NY, promoting my classical guitar concert/workshop.  Photo by Gary Walts

Tonight I performed four pieces by Francisco Tarrega at the North Country Arts Council annual Muse project held at their gallery space in downtown Watertown. That went very well. I had a couple of brief fumbles that were really insignificant. No one but I knew they happened. I was complimented much afterward. Originally I wanted to play some Beatles songs arranged for classical guitar but as I took my seat I changed my mind. I generally save Beatles arrangement for later in any given set after I have warmed up a bit. Going into them cold may (or may not) have gone well. Rather than gamble, I played it safe. After all I only had  about 10 minutes and I did want to make a favorable impression, which I did. I counted roughly about 75 people in the audience. Thre years or so ago we had over 200 in attendence. 

Monday, March 24, 2014

Frost on the window pane and jury duty

It was a frost 10 degrees here in Chaumont NY this morning. Snapped this photo of frost on a window pane in the wood shed.
Frost on a window pane in the wood shed. Photo by Gary Walts

Yesterday was a rather pleasant one for me. I got a couple of hours of GOOD guitar practice in. Managed to paint most of our large bedroom. Did the regular chores too, bringing in fire wood and that sort of thing. The Better Half wasn't doing so well. She woke up with a stomach ailment and spent most of the day and night lying down. Finished the day off with a nice bottle of Thorny Rose Cabernet Sauviogn and watch The Amazing Race on CBS tv.

This morning the Better Half was still feeling ill with the stomach thing. Tomorrow I have to report to Watertown City Court for jury duty. That's all for now.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Notes to myself from Friday March 7th

It is Friday night and I am feeling inspired. For the past week I have been home alone. Last Sunday the better half went on vacation with her daughter and her family to Florida leaving me here by myself. unknown to her I took the week off from my job with the Syracuse media group and post standard news paper. So, I have been away from my job and my better half for almost a week now. I have gotten back in touch with myself it feels. In fact about the only person I have been spending any time where is my brother Ron. He has been here every day working on building a closet in one of our bedroom rooms. While he has been doing that I have begun digging out the clutter in my dark room. I am dismantling the dark room. It has been a difficult thing to do for me. Anyhow I could go on and on Rambling, but the short story is, it has been refreshing to be , for the most part alone. I suddenly just this evening feel like I am myself again.

Shutting down my darkroom

Panorama view of my darkroom after the 8' sink was removed. The doors and woodwork are for a bedroom closet. Removing the sink gave me space to stain and polyurathane the wood. 
So while the Better Half was on vacation in Florida I decided to begin to dismantle my darkroom. In the last five years or so I have not done any printing in there and has slowly descended into a hopelessly disorganized junk room. I have plenty of black and white paper, various grades of RC and fiber based, and chemicals. But the space has become an embarasment of clutter. The photos I present here are somewhat misleading in that I moved a lot of stuff off to one side so as to make room to stain and finish some wood panel closet doors. I performed that work in the space that occupied my darkroom sink.
Freshly stained closet doors rest on what used to be the base of my darkroom sink.

A lot of clutter. Looks a bit worse because I piled everything to one side of the room to make space for finishing wood panel doors.

A lot of clutter. Looks a bit worse because I piled everything to one side of the room to make space for finishing wood panel doors.

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Jars of change accumulated over a long time. Cashed them in and was disappointed how little money there really was there. You can see a lot of silver there, but it was mostly pennies. 

clutter, clutter. 

One of many photos that are in unorganized stacks. I suppose I should at least sign them and maybe that will have some effect on their value.  

Snowy Watertown NY street scene

I snapped this photo on February 27th. Another miserable Winter day in the North Country.
Watertown street scene photographed through snow windshield with an iPhone5.   photo by Gary Walts

Monday, March 3, 2014

Another day below zero

The Better Half flew to Florida yesterday with her daughter B and her family. That would be B, husband and two kids. I just got out of bed here in Chaumont NY and it is 7 below zero. To make matters worse the oil furnace will not turn on. I think we probably ran out of oil. We just had a 150  gallon delivery a few weeks ago. We have a wood stove too so it isn't a real crisis but I am surprised we are running as much oil as we are. I was caught off gaurs.

Monday, February 17, 2014

yesterday I awoke to minus 6 degrees. This morning it was minus 13. Man, oh man, these tempratures are getting old. The heat bill is out of control. Lately gasoline prices ahve been rising. I don't know where all this will end. It's ridiculous.
Yestrday I played guitar for a couple hours at an indoor farm market at the Chaumont Fire dept. hall. From there a birtrhday party  for the Better Half's grand son #3.
G's sixth birthday.  iPhone photo by gary walts

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Another cold morning in Chaumont NY

It was 13 below zero this morning in Chaumont, N.Y. I don't have the energy to ezplain the genesis of this photo other than to say I snapped it with the iPhone through the kitchen window.
View from a kitchen windo of my home in Chaumont, NY.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Photo District News magazine, Eugene Meatyard book

September 2000 issue of Photo District News. A story about me appears on page 114.

I have had a nice darkroom in my home for many years. However, in recent years I have simply not iused it and it has turned into a room full of junk, likem a giant unorganized closet. Well that is about to end. Yesterday as i was cleaning out stuff, throwing stuff away, I opened a box and found a September 2000 issue of Photo District News magazine that featured a story about me and a photo essay I made about my father. I also discovered one of my favorite books that I have been looking for for quite some time. That would be an Aperture publication of Eugene Meatyard photos. I love Meatyard's work. I wish I could have met him.
September 2000 issue of Photo District News. A story about me appears on page 114.

This book of Eugene Meatyard photos is among my favorites. This volum was published in 1974. Meatyard had an exhibition of his photos at Jefferson Community College in Watertown, NY in (I believe) 1971. That's where I first saw his work. I loved it. Still do. I have another book about Meatyard that I have also mis-placed and hopefully will find it amid the clutter one day soon. 
1971 Aperture publication about Eugene Meatyard, one of my all time favorite photo books.