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.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Observations, Thoughts, Question Marks

It got cold here in Chaumont, NY last night. 14 degrees F.
Thursday evening my mother went to the hospital. Fluid build up in her lungs. Spitting up blood. IT's congestive heart failure. She has no pain, just concern. The Doctors want to drain fluid out of her body. She's admitted to intensive care.

I gave up all alcohol for lent. Today is Sunday. My Mother is still in the hospital. I play a 3 hour guitar gig at Carl's Furniture in Watertown. Paid a hundred bucks. At 3:00 I visit my Mother. I am told she has pneumonia. I don't like the sound of that. She seems weaker and frail. It is the first Sunday in Lent and I have given up all alcohol for lent. But, it is SUNDAY. So I stop at Gold Star Liquors and buy a bottle of Merlot. It is Rex-Goliath to be exact. A reasonabubbley priced and flavored California wine.

It is the first Sunday of Lent and I am at Carl's Furniture playing guitar. Paul Ferguson comes in and sets up 3 video cameras to tape an hour or so of my playing. I mention to him that my mother is having some issues and is in the Hospital. He tells me that his mother passed away a year ago this last September. She had a stroke. But the stroke did not kill her. She was recovering just fine when, still in hospital, she got pneumonia. That was the beginning of the end of her. So I finish up my gig at the furniture store, collect my pay and go to the Hospital to visit me Madre. She looks weaker than the day before. She is breathing harder. My Celebrity Brother is there. The doctors had earlier informed him that she has developed pneumonia. Today I took no photos of her.

I am drinking the Merlot, hic-cupping in between sips as I write this. The Academy Awards are on TV in the background. Who cares? Not me. I could give a shit. Pardon the vulgarity. Hic-up.

I need to get out and play Thousand Dollar Gigs. ten or twenty of those a year would be a help.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Congestive Heart Failure

I snapped these photos last night. My Mother was taken to the hospital with what I believe is congestive heart failure. We think she will be in hospital for 2 or 3 days. However, in such matters the unexpected is always lurking around the corner. We hope it's not too serious.
I will try to find time to go into this situation in more detail later.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Gary Walts Plays Vincent (Starry Starry Night)

This is me playing Don McLean's Vincent (Starry,Starry Night). I was playing at Carl's Furniture in Watertown, NY. this past February 12th.

This classical guitar version as arranged by John Knowles, Nashville, TN.

The video was made by Paul Ferguson, Watertown, NY.

Paul is an excellent and widely known entertainer. He is also a videographer. He was using me as subject matter to experiment with some new video editing software and multiple cameras. I think he did a great job. The audio is less than ideal, but that's not what he was as concerned about. He was experimenting using multiple camera's & angles. So the audio has some ambient background noise. The microphone was a the built in one on one of the cameras. An external shotgun mic would have greatly improved upon it.

For the past month Carl's Furniture has been hosting a Sunday brunch in their store with live entertainment from 11:00-1:00. Paul had no idea who he was going to find playing there. It just happened to be me. He asked if he could use me as a subject & I said "Go for it."

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Variations On A Theme: Case Road Winter Scene

Two or three weeks ago we had one of the very few snow falls of the Winter. I like how the snow packed against objects on the side exposed to the prevailing wind. So I kept my eye out for something to show this bit of Mother Nature's artistry. Thus it was I stopped my 2002 Dodge Caravan and snapped the following pictures.

As with all things that catch my eye I set about photographing them and "working" the subject. Varying the focal length of the lens, camera angle, depth of field and the like. Later during the edit process it can be difficult to settle on a favorite image from the whole take. This evening I am leaning toward the upper most photo as my favorite composition.

The scene is on Case Road in the Town of Lyme, N.Y., about 3 miles from my home.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Cafe Mocha

A couple of days ago I was in Clayton, NY, visiting my good friend the artist Greg Lago. We walked to The Lyric restaurant where I ordered a cafe mocha. The ligjht was such that I was compelled to make a photo of it. That photo is presented here. It was taken with a Nikon D300.

I have a busy day tomorrow. At 2:30 I am to make some photographs at the Oswego Maritime Museum in Oswego, NY. From there I drive 45 miles to Syracuse & shoot a job at 5:30. After that I drive BACK to Oswego to photograph a basketball at 7:00pm. That's a rather brutal schedule.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Some Post Midnight Observations

Every once in a while I have a spiritual experience with the guitar. Tonight was on of those times.

Late Nights combined with wine are seeds for inspiration... IF you are working. As I was tonight.

The late night, the work, the wine, AND THEN: The spiritual event occurred. Tonight. The work was with the guitar. Once again the connection I made with God was because of music.

There have also been times in my life when I have co0me face to face with incredible photo ops that have mad me feel the same way. As if God unfolded a view, a scene, a situation in front of me. Just for me. Just because I was there and it's as if HE were telling ME to stop the car (or what ever I was doing) and "...photograph that which I am presenting to you befor you eyes." What else can I do but obey?

Locally on the music scene I realize this: The savvy old guys realize that Gino is the man. Who is Gino? That is for another day.

Saint Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day.

I took this photo in Syracuse N.Y. It says "Love Me." How appropriate. Saint Valentine's Day is evidently named for at least three different Saints with that name. I personally think that it has morphed into a goofy tradition of exchanging cards, gifts and flowers. God forbid if a man should overlook it and not do something of the like for his Sweet Heart. So last night I went out and bought flowers, card and candy which will be awaiting the Better Half when she rises and shines this morning. She will appreciate the gesture, but she will not touch the candy. She doesn't like it. Doesn't eat it. So, that leaves me to consume it all. Hey, I need to get something out of it too. If I didn't get her candy for me to eat I would get nothing at all because, my Better Half never gets me anything on Saint Valentines Day. No card. Nothing. But you know what? That's OK with me. I still think it's silly and I see no reason for her to go out and make a fool of herself like I do.
A Google search just informed me that we will spend $414.7 billion dollars on Valentines Day stuff.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Spaghetti and Hot Dogs

I found this idea floating around on Face Book. I don't know who to attribute it to.
Looks like a fun idea for kids. The photos are not mine. When I try this myself I will, of course, photograph it.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Amish Boys At Dekalb Junction N.Y.

It is a beautiful day here in Chaumont, N.Y. The Sun is out, it is 29 degrees F.

A few days ago I posted a photo of two Amish boys in Dekalb Junction, N.Y. Yesterday I came across a second image of thos same two kids. This was taken inside the barn during a cattle auction. Data with the digital, file indicates I scanned the Tri-X negative in 1996. I believe that I actually took the photo some years earlier.

The following photos I got from the Town of Dekalb historian web site.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Morning Sun

Woke up to some Sun this morning. I was turning on my lap top computer and noticed the Sun on the eye glasses in this photo. So I snapped it.

Last night I played some guitar music during the cocktail hour of the 60th annual Shapiro Award dinner. It was held at the Ramada Inn in Watertown, N.Y. I was quite satisfied with my playing.