Clyde Aspevig Interview

A New Mini-Documentary Video

I’m very excited to show you this little interview!

In case you don’t know of the great painter Clyde Aspevig (or you missed that bit in my book where I referenced his paintings), then this is a great chance to do so.  I was lucky enough to spend several days with him again in Montana at a ranch, and I did not waste it.  Many of you know my fascination with the French Impressionists; the idea that I was able to talk to a modern day reincarnation of one was thrilling.

Daily Photo – Clyde Aspevig in the Wild

While I was out there with the D3S (see my Nikon D3S Review) taking video, I also grabbed a number of stills.  While Clyde was in the middle of one of his paintings, I knelt down to grab this one.  I love it… I think he looks like a demigod.

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Running Wild, Across the Meadow

I Need a New Phone! Help, my Euro and Scandinavian Friends!

So, I’ve decided to give Android a chance for a bit. But, I want a good unlocked phone so I can pop a sim card in for any country. I like the looks of the Droid X, but it’s locked down. I figure that my European and Scandinavian friends know the models of some great new phones that run Android really well.  Here in the US, it’s hard for me to get a good grip on what the hottest Euro/Scand phone models are!

Here is what I need:

  • An unlocked phone where I can pop in any Sim Card (not sure which US service I will use yet)
  • The ability to use it as a wi-fi hotspot so I can connect my laptops and iPads (I can do this in Europe too, I assume)
  • The menu system in US or UK English
  • NOTE:  If there is an AWESOME one coming in the next few weeks or months, I can wait a bit too!

Update:

  • Based on feedback and tweets, I’m leaning to the HTC Desire
  • Wondering if I should wait on the HTC Desire HD in October !
  • Or if there is another good one coming out between now and then…  that will let me pop in another sim card

Why I am switching from iPhone (since I know many will ask!):

  • I love the apps, but, really, I use 90% of them now on my iPad.
  • Because I use apps on the iPad, on the phone, I find myself only:
    • Talking with voice (AT&T is awful)
    • Looking at Google Maps (which are better on the Android)
    • Use Twitter (plenty of Android apps)
    • Light web surfing…  (and rarely, at that)

Daily Photo – Running Wild, Across the Meadow

I was just returning from one little adventure and then I stumbled onto another one!

Every day, about this time, a few dozen horses from the ranch run free across the meadow to graze in distant pastures. They stay cooped up inside the corral for most of the day, so they love the chance to run free. The cowboy rides behind them, cracking his whip. It echoes through the valley and everything seems right in the world.

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The Forest on the Mega Volcano

Interview on Trip Atlas

I'm making this 200-400mm lens look a lot lighter than it actually is. Shortly after this shot, I collapsed in screaming agony.

There is a new interview at Trip Atlas. We talk about this and that. How’s that for a description?

Nikon 200-400mm Review

I have put up a new Nikon 200-400 Review here on the site and sprinkled many new photos inside! I rented it from Borrowlenses.com last week while I was in Yellowstone. It was a fun lens to use and quite different. I pushed myself to do a few landscapes with it, and one of these is posted below!

Daily Photo – The Forest on the Mega Volcano

I would guess about 50% of people know this, and I should not take it for granted that everyone does.  But Yellowstone sits on top of a giant caldera, and it’s due to go off any time (at least, geologically due!) If you look at a map of Yellowstone from above, you can see the clear outline of the caldera.  When the mega-volcano strikes, it’ll be a doozy!

In the meantime, the ultra-thin crust of this area gives way to some remarkable geothermal events. There is a period of the morning when the air is cool and the earth is hot.  It creates an exceptional amount of steam in some areas.

I woke up about 5 AM to go catch this morning steam.  I use the D3S as my backup camera, and I had the 200-400mm affixed.  I challenged myself to capture some compressed landscapes, and this area seemed just about perfect.
This is a single-shot HDR that came from a RAW file.  These RAW files contain a lot of light information nowadays.

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The Gentle Eye of the Beast

Amazing Time with the Wounded Warriors

Last night I had the chance to meet and present to a group of wounded soldiers that have recently returned from combat.

I’m still here at this ranch in Yellowstone, and we had some recent arrivals. There is a program called the Wounded Warrior Project, and many groups of soldiers come out to Montana to do a bit of fly fishing.

I sat by Dave Kumlien at dinner tonight (read about Dave here), who helps lead the Warriors & Quiet Waters program. He’s a master fly-fisherman (we call him the “Trout Whisperer” around here). He told me a bunch of different stories about this program over the last four years. He’s worked with over 150 vets and has 150 stories about how they have changed. I’m trying to convince him to write a book about it!

Anyway, after the big dinner, we all retired to the Great Room, and I gave a little half-hour presentation on photography. We had a great time during and afterward — and I was happy to meet and talk to them all.

Daily Photo – The Gentle Eye of the Beast

I gave a little impromptu workshop a few days ago.  I took a group of friends for the afternoon and we went out for an instructional photowalk, followed by a hardcore critique.

On the short walk, we visited a barn and a stable.  I gave assignments to people to all gather photos of the same subjects, find unique bits, and then submit a few photos for critique.  I’ve done this sort of thing many times before, and I’m always surprised at what I see.  Everything from the mundane to the stunning.  However, I am always impressed at what people find that I did not see.  I sometimes like to think that I can find many of the cool tidbits and angles, but then I am humbled when “newbies” find things that I completely missed!

Anyway, we had a great time milling about and comparing notes.  I did the whole assignment myself, and submitted this one into my own critique.

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Our Night Under the Stars

Daily Photo – Our Night Under the Stars

I’m in the middle of a great trip to a ranch in Montana that I’ll never forget.

The nights here are always strange and different.  I’ve only gotten outside a few times to take photos, mostly because of inclement weather.  During the first week or so, the moon so high and bright that it caused everything to get blown out.  That’s no good and makes for a boring night.  Who needs a boring night?

The moon was just about to rise behind the mountains, and the night air was crystal clear. The soft cloud from top left to bottom right is the Milky Way, and it gave the night a nice texture.

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