Contrary to local belief my Head is full of ideas, most of them fleeting and unformed. Some reoccurring, but needing some form of outlet. A few are actually pretty good. Lets see what comes up!
Looking for something motorsport related consider visiting our sister site www.speedovision.com It's HOT!
As of today consider this site a work in progress. Things just are to dated and in no way reflect my current level of competence. Look for lots of unannounced updates, and structure updates. A total redo if you will .. But it all has to start somewhere. Like now!
New Kid in town.
Mainly me, Downtown Baltimore that is. It might have taken over a quarter century but I finally made a visit to the iconic Bromo-Tower in Downtown Baltimore. Thanks to a Baltimore Bizjournal piece I stumbled across Friday that discribed the upcoming (Saturday) Open Door Baltimore event where 27 building that were not accessable, or had Limited or sporadic access to the public. I quickly scanned the list and picked three buildings for targets. The aforementioned Bromo-Tower, the spectacular Peabody Library. And to wrap it up the iconic Baltimore shot Tower.
Of the three the Shot Tower was the most disappointing to me. Mainly due to it vast interior space which was dimly lit and very hard to photograph. Of course all these are accessable at various times, and of course all will be revisited at a later time for additional attempts to capture these treasured bits of Baltimore history.
and maybe another lunch at my favorite Baltimore dining spot. Harry Attman’s Deli on Lombard st
What's New With You?
Nothing much as of now. Did visit the past in Ilkchester MD, The ruins of “St Mary’s Monastery” and Simkins Paper Mill will warrant a revisit as will the Old B&O rail infrastructure.
Later on in the week it was a visit to the Providence Cemetery in Gamber MD.
2014 Off and Running
Look how fast this year is already going, it seems only short time ago I was waiting at Liberty Reservoir for the first Sunrise of the New Year.
And now day 1 is almost history.. One of my New Year’s resolutons is to spend time updating the Doug Miller Photography website, I’ve been a sadly remiss in that area.. Second New Years Resolution is to post to this blog at least once a week. If for nothing else then getting back on the NSA tracking list..
I would like to wish all a Happy and Prosperous 2014.
See you soon.
Here and there and back again.
A passing of an age. fdphotovideo
On Friday night I left the light in www.ffphotovidoe.com go out for good.. I've had the site up for almost 10 years but lately with the new www,speedovision.com site showcasing motorsport events, It became more and more obvious,that maintaining three sites were just to much of a chore. So it's God Speed and Following Winds to you and all the joys you brought to countless children over the years. Well maybe that part is made up.
To every thing turn turn turn, there is a season and a purpose under heaven.
How do you spell "Train Wreck"?
For starters try this example www.dougmillerphotos.com!
I noticed I hadn't done much with this website since I spun off www.speedovision.com and www.dougmillerphotos.com from www.fdphotovision.com, while trying to add the Nadirah Nasreen's Annual Hafla! event. It became apparent this puppy need a major overhaul both to structure. and content. Well there's no time like the present. Please bear with this mess until I can redress, and redo.. What's that I hear Mr. Anderson, sounds like old 99 a coming down the track. I better get started quick.
Dance they said, and it was good. Update
This year events seem to be few and far between. Almost at the last second, my young Child Bride (CB) and her dance companion decided to attend Nadirah Nasreen's Annual Hafl at the Pasha Land restaurant in Gaithersburg MD. Reservations were made over the phone for the following night (Sunday) and the excitement slowly started to build for both of us. Her, because she loves the Dance , and has so for almost 35 years. Me, it was an event, my real passion, photographing events. I have my favorites but as a rule, The Middle Eastern Dance events are not on the top of my list.. Don't get me wrong, I love photographing Middle Eastern Dancers of all shapes and sizes. And what's not to love, the colors, movements, music? No what's not to love is the venues.. It's a real challenge to capture a worthwhile images of the dancers in a High School Gym, Senior Center, parking lot or worse. Which with small exception is where they are. Fact of life, the girls love to dance where ever they can to show off their skills, and to do this "You takes what you gets."
But I have, as they say, digressed. We both went into our usual preparation modes, hers are not for public consumption, mine are more of a mechanical nature. Batteries to be charged, cameras & lens' needed to be selected. Which always proves to be a dilemma. Most times not knowing the where's why and whens of the venue always makes it at best, a guess. This time not being different, I decided to travel light with the 5DMII, a 50mm f/1.2, 100mm f/2.8, and one flash to deal with what ever lighting situations were presented.
When we arrived at Pasha Land at the appointed time, I was a bit distressed to see the restaurant was really not that large, and was packed with dancers and guests, with space already at a premium . which built when we came to find out our reservations had more or less, "flown the coupe". Lucky for us the owners daughter did some magic logistical redirection and we were ushered to our table, right out front. This was much appreciated by CB and friend as they almost were out on the dance floor. For me any use of the 100mm F/28, was ruled out. The only other bullet I had was the 50mm f/1.2 which was still a little long for this space. ("Darn why didn't I pack a wide angle?" ) As the excitement built, drinks ordered, menu choices made, I stated to realize the pickle i was in. When the dancers started to line up for the first group dance, the front line was only a foot and a half away from the front of the lens.
Nor perfect but Oh well, time to make some lemonade.. It's only pixels anyway. The music started, the light dimmed (I wish) and the magic started. Knowing things were far from perfect but I would get what I could i sat back, stretched my right pointer finger and started firing away. The rest of the afternoon was a blur of whirling dancers, delicious food and trying to get that "perfect shot.
A note of apology to the dancers, I was unable to capture "keepers" of all the dancers due to their proximity and lighting, and I'm still trying to mach the dancer listed in the flyer, to the images..
My thanks to all involved in making Nadirah Nasreen's Annual Hafla! a smashing success. The images posted are from my Flickr site but many more are posted or are in process of being posted on my gallery site. so check back often. .
Changing Seasons, Changing directions
Look outside the season is changing, summer is giving way to fall, which will in turn give way to winter. My approach to images likewise has started to change somewhat. Prior I would accept more of less what ever the camera had captured, perhaps with some minor tweaks in Aperture. Now more and more I find myself using one, or more, of the NIK plugins, with an occasional forays into PhotoShop to use the AKVIS SKITCH plugin or to provide background effects.
Above John Brown - NIK HDR Efex Pro 2, NIK Color Efex Pro 4
Above "The Dancers" Post processing With Aperture 3, NIK Color Efex Pro 4, ApertureExpert’s Preset Pack #5 “Film & Funk”
Above NIK Color Efex Pro 4 and Aperture core tools.
NIK Silver Efex Pro 2 and Aperture core tool set. Also becoming a fan of the square crop in many circumstances.
Above Aperture 3, Adobe Photo Shop, AKVIS SKITCH Photo Shop plug-in, NiK Color Efex Pro 4.
PressPausePlay by House of Radon
An extremely well done media project on the current state of electronic media from the inside.
Society has been given a gift. This wonderful film has captured the interior segments, discussed and speculated on it's ramifications. As is the case of so many of the best gifts, it was dreamed of, but not asked for. Many who profit will find this gift unwelcome and try to control, or even stifle it in the name of .........…whatever.
The "Old" look on this gift with speculation, the norm is changing. The old don't like change. It means learning new rules and at best once learnt, becoming a second rate player. Hence the attempts to control change. In the name of………..whatever.
The "Young" don' t look at this gift as a give at all, It's just there. Part of their world. Just there.
In the new paradigm all can play, be a part and produce. But the hard realty is the collective hive mind of the mass will dictate what will stay today, and what is relegated . That's the scary part, as this is the same mechanism that gave us chain restaurants, kept American Idol on TV, and of course made "The Twilight Saga" hit media.
Gone in 1 Minute 42 Seconds.... BCTRA Indoor Flat Track Racing 121011 on Vimeo
How bout some back story on this Video? When I shoot motion related events I like to shoot a lot of images, lots a lots of images. Why motion is hard to catch, it's easer out side with lots of light, but that makes indoors is even more of a challenge due to the lower light levels. And it is most important to have the camera pointed in the right direction, and focused on the subject(s). To me more shots = a greater chance of catching that "Once in a lifetime" special moment.
This image i shot at a NASCAR race at Dover Dl. Was totally a fluke. The wreck was already in progress and for once I had the camera to my eye, focused on the action, and a clear view, I actually squeezed off 5 shots before before everyone stood up.
But I ramble .. When one is looking at 1800 images, one better have a great workflow tool, and I use the best. Apple Aperture 3. It only took about 1 hour to do a 3 pass selection to get the real keepers and start post production. And what can I do with 1500 some images that are left? Make a movie out of them.. Of which you seen the first quick version I more or less threw together with Apple Final Cut Pro X NLE (Non Linear Video Editing) software and some event sound I recorded on a Zoom H4n. As long as it stays fun, it's all good right?
It's Beginning to look a lot like Christmas. www.wackytackychristmas.com
Firstly I love Christmas, the memories, the songs, the warm feeling of goodwill, but not what it has become.. Think about it 100 years ago Christmas was basically a secular holiday, family gathering, and light gift giving. Largely seeped in Germanic traditions. Today it's non-stop exposure to print, broadcast media, even the internet, that invites up to Buy Buy Buy. Santa ditched his traditional sleigh for a new red Mercedes $250,000 SL300. The media would have us believe that many give new cars to spouse, siblings, wrapped in giant red bows. Giant RedBows where do you get them anyway? They're not sold in Kmart. What kind of message does this send out to the masses, well at least to the 99%.. Try harder, work harder and someday this could be you. Or sorry looser, maybe you can dream about buying a winning lottery ticket. The music. Each year I love to hear all the traditional Christmas songs. Once, not over and over and over, no matter where your go. Food shopping, why do I need to listen to "Santa Clause is Coming to Town" while buying a can of sauerkraut, some milk. Or while eating lunch in my favorite store front pizza joint? If a little medicine is good for you then lets take more cus it must be better. Well at least until the Alzheimer's, or death takes them away I still have those special memories of Christmas as only a 5 year old can have. All was good, all was bright and Santa and his Sleigh were coming tonight..
But how about WackyTackyChristmas I did this website about 6 years ago as a lark, just a virtual sandbox to play around with I feel is an overlooked segment of the Holiday, mainly bad Holiday outdoor lighting. Tasteless, excesses, all are fare game.
As Clark Griswold Jr. said to Senior in that venerable holiday classic movie Christmas Vacation "Dad. I owe everything I learned about outdoor lighting to you"
Currently playing in iTunes: Fir Coat by Widowspeak
"Dust-n-Dirt" - A peek into the (my) creative process.
BCTRA After the Gold Rush A retrospect
A visit to the track the day after the final event.
How long has it been? July 3? I'm falling behind almost too much to catch up on but I'll try.
(Quick note, seem my old favorite blogging software BLOGO doesn't support the new Mac OS 10.7, so I'm giving MarsEdit a try until……. BLOGO comes up with an updated version, I find something cheaper <$39.00-ouch> , the 30 day trial is up and I have to buy.)
But I digress, back to orginal story line.
The 5 race BCTRA Kevin Mcnicholas Memorial Short Track Racing Series has come & gone As schedule would have it, I only had the opportunity to attend the 4 Friday night sessions, but I'll take what I can get. How can you even begin to look back at those 4 night of action? The racing was hot (so was the weather for the first 2 sessions if I recall), attendance light compared to other years. Seeing as the new groundbreaking Mac video software package Final Cut Pro X is in my toolbox, this year I decided to try something completely different. Less captured images, more HD video for a project I decided to undertake, attempting to capture some of the special magic offered up by the BCTRA and the dedicate army of local racers. Unnamed as of yet, it has been quite the learning experience. The video part is easy as long as one keeps it simple, trying fancy Hollywood techniques, like extreme DOF in daylight using neutral density filters, maybe not the best idea. Slide tracks, again a cool effect, but a real PITA to drag around. The interviews presented a "whole-nother" challenge, like sound. Which bit me in the but all 4 nights. I got better at it but their is room for improvement. End state I shot less images, maybe less then 2K for the whole series compared to the 10K I shot at last years events. But captured over 2 hours of interviews, race and "B" roll segments. Enough for now, back to processing media from Friday night. 1385 stills 1 hr of DV video, 38 min of HD video. Lots of material to work with.
Gary Nixon RIP You will be missed by me and the local racing community.
(Note: Links to all my racing images can always be found at my FDPhotovideo Website)
About the iPad, Netfix and crackers.
iPad's, Netflix and Crackers. What does that have to do with anything?
Last Thursday Craig, a good friend and incredibly talented photographer lent me his older iPad (V1) for a few days. Of course the official task was to check out, and troubleshoot iPad specific WordPress plugin i've installed over at the Central Maryland Photographers' Guild website. Which was done but sadly most of it's use can be categorized as:
Laying in bed, watching documentaries on Netflix, while my hands are exploring the inside of a not doctor approved, box of crackers
Of course not all the time was spent on Netflix, I played around with apps mirrored over from my iPhone. (Did I mention I love apps?) Time was spent viewing some training vids on Lynda,com, and maybe even a little "Angry Birds" time was logged.
While all but one of the iPod touch/iPhone apps worked on the iPad, some were standouts
The Audubon app was much better on a bigger screen, MovieSlate likewise. The image slideshows of myHDR's from the Air and Space Museumwere breathtaking, as good or better as portrayed. The Flickr experience was much better than on the smaller devices, much....much better.
As I user the iPod Touch/IPhone apps a lot and is painfully aware of the small screen limitations, I'm not surprised how much I enjoyed the iPad experience overall.
But as in many fairy tails.. this one had to end on a sad note....... Mainly I have to package it up so as to give back tomorrow, and the finances just wouldn't support a iPod purchase in the near term. Guess I'm just left with the Crackers box and the need for a winning lottery ticket for the time being.
Cold as Ice.. and not outdoors.
While working to complete a project due this week it has become evident the aperture library contain all the 2000-2008 projects, versions, keywords, locations. are located on the failed Drobo. Sure I have all the images stored on other drives, but realizing not having that Aperture library, and from web searches, not really not expecting Drobo to proved any real support that will restore the data contained, sends a cold chill down my spine.. My mood is now as fowl as the weather outside. Gone Gone Gone,
Welcome 2011. Out with the old, In with the new.
Happy New Year to Every One. My wish is that peace and prosperity rein supreme.
Gung hay fat choy (a New Year greeting meaning, "May you become prosperous.")
Sun nien fai lok (meaning, "Happy new year")
Xin nian yu kuai
Aide shoma mobarak
Aith-bhliain Fe Nhaise Dhuit
Gutes Neues Jahr
Hauoli Makahiki Hou
Nyob zoo xyoo tshiab
Boldog új évet
Selamat Tahun Baru
Buon Capo d'Anno
Akemashite Omedetou Gozaimasu
Maligayang Bagong Taon
Szczesliwego Nowego roku
Feliz ano novo
La Multi Ani
S Novym Godom
Feliz Año Nuevo
Wilujeng Tahun Baru
Gott Nytt År
Yeni Yiliniz Kutlu Olsun
Blwyddyn Newydd Dda
Gettysburg, why the fascination?
Over the years I visited the Gettysburg battlefield maybe over 100 times. And with out fail, on each return, I see it in a slightly different light. Over the last few weeks I've been fascinated with capturing sunrise images, which of course, means.
- Checking the weather forecast.
- Getting up at 0 Dark 30, & making the 45min drive.
- Picking the spot to be when the sun come up and hoping it works.
Other days it's some where else.
But the end state walking (yes walking is involved) around the park, seeing it in early morning "magic light, always adds to my sense of what went on here so many years ago and the sacrifices men of both sides made for their cause. Which of course adds yet again to my fascination with the place.
Two of the big helps have turned out to be a pfd copy of the Official Park Map, which is stored on an ipod touch, and of course, my AMOS AGL3080 Geotagger, which allows me to pin point exactly where each images is taken, which is referenced to above said map.
.... To be continued
Toying with the technology.
I've become totally enamored with applications that can share with others.
Example is an image of one of the performers in the recent Bellydancers Passionate for Pink Performance on 101610. Image is hosted on Flickr. Just opens up a whole new realm of possibilities. Maybe not new to all, but new to me.
Photo Exhibition Kick Off Party
The CMPG had a kick-off party for it's Photo Exhibition at the Penn Camera's Laurel MD location. A fine time was had by all who came out and as noted by our President." I hope that you all noticed that we had more of our membership at the Penn Camera opening than at any of our meetings.
Maybe we need to have free food at our monthly meetings." Shamelessly displayed is my "CMPG members selection vote winner"
3 weeks ago I didn't even know MD had sunflower fields, but thanks to the gang over at CMPG (www.cmpg.org. ) I became caught up in sunflower mania. Which it turns out isn't such the bad thing. Caught the sunrise over this field this morning. I'm really addicted. Might give it another shot tomorrow.
Workflow is back.. Testing B-T-F post #fb
Have no idea what froze up the system while attempting to Geotag Sundays images from Delta Pa. Aperture 3. But things are more or less back to normal. I noticed while geotagging the entrance to the Delta Fairgrounds is in MD all the rest in Pa.
While we're at it, lets test a Blogger to Twitter to Facebook post
Workflow is not working
Went up to Delta Pa. today to shoot the BCTRA motorcycle races. Even thought it was hot and dusty, had a great time and retuned home with about 1000 images. The problem at hand is so far it's taken over 2 hours to D/L from the cards. Import into Aperture 3, and Geotagging. I hate to let the program do it's thing overnight. Plus I shot the images, I want to see them!
Still more advances
Science moves on.. This afternoon I was able to send a calendar event to this twitter account . Can calendar blog posts be far away. Don't think so,
55th Combat Camera
55th Combat Camera on Vimeo
This team of Army Combat Photographers/ Videographers HQ's is right down the street from my day job. Cutting edge under fire while making sure the batteries are charged & cameras at the ready.
Happy Birthday (of a sort)
Just noticed this Site has now been in place for one whole month. Maybe it's time to really start to pour in content. Just saying.
The Story Behind the Image - Hill County Water Garden
CMPG Aug meeting
I think perhaps one of the central themes that is most important to any photographer is peer-to-peer interaction to help foster understanding and help build technique. Tonights critique of images at the Aug meeting of the Central Maryland Photographers' Guild was one of those nights.
Neuschwanstein the trip home
A close friend posted an image of Castle Neuschwanstein on her flickr site which made me remember this image I shot on a long, cold, wet, walk down from the castle on a earlier that week. Neuschwanstein the trip home
Penn Camera Display image attached
I guess injecting images need a bit of work