Archive for 2009

Here’s an obligatory clip from Simon’s first “concert” at school.

I’ve discovered that taking a picture of one kid is pretty easy, compared to getting a picture of two. Today we took the kids out to try and get a decent picture or two for our Christmas cards. In keeping of the tradition of posting outtakes, here’s a small taste of what we had to deal with.

I am DONE with pictures!
Dude. . .relax

I’m not sure why I didn’t post this earlier in the week, but I wanted to get it up here before the next game. That’d be tomorrow, against Miami. Anyway, I couldn’t have picked a better finish. The Hokies, after an opening TD drive, did precisely squat offensively the rest of the game. The D and special teams (as well as a few favorable calls and mistakes on Nebraska’s part) kept them in the game for these last minute heroics. I LOVE the frenzied joy that comes with a last minute victory. And experiencing it in person was fabulous. You go from the doldrums to ecstasy with 65,000 of your best friends in about 5 seconds. It’s pretty cool.

Quick Update: I forgot to include this little conversation I had with my brother’s roommate right before this series. An “Overheard in the Stands,” if you will.

Steve (Murray’s Roomate): You know, all it takes is one big play.
Me: Steve, what have you seen in this game that makes you think we’re capable of even a single big play?
Steve: *shrugs*

So yeah, this shows what I know:

I’m a full 3 weeks, 4 weeks, well, let’s just say I’m WAY behind on my Adventures in Produce posts. The thing is, I’m not really that sad about it. This has been a frustrating project for me for several reasons, and I’m happy to throw it under the bus. All my fault, for sure, but frustrating nonetheless.

The problems that stand out most in my mind are:

  • Logistics and Time Constraints – I simply didn’t have the time I wanted to put together these shots. Everything seemed rushed. I didn’t really anticipate the craziness of walking in the door from work and trying to set up and shoot the weekly produce picture with kids were underfoot in the 30-45 minutes I had before dinner. Additionally, Kate was sometimes needing some of the produce we got for that week to cook dinner.
  • Lighting – I was extremely frustrated with the lighting in my house. Our house doesn’t get a lot of natural light, and the little we do get is difficult to work with. I was having all sorts of issues with exposure and white balance that I just didn’t have the time to mess with in the short period I had to take the pictures (see item one).
  • Equipment – When I started this project, I fully expected to be purchasing the beginning of my strobist-inspired lighting equipment. I planned on having at least one strobe, one lightstand, and one umbrella with which to light. Er, yeah. . . about that. We had a couple of unexpected expenses this summer. Air conditioning, medical bills, auto stuff, hi-def television. . . you know, all essentials. What’s that? YOU try saying no to your wife when she tells you that it’s okay for you to go buy a replacement TV. I mean really, the GALL of that woman! Kidding hon, TOTALLY kidding. As an aside, now that football season has started any buyers remorse I had over that TV has been magically cured. Funny, that.

    So anyway, the flash equipment purchase got put off indefinitely, and I haven’t been experimenting with any of the light stuff I wanted to experiment with.

  • A Generally Disappointing CSA Experience – In general, I have been a little disappointed by the quality of the produce we’ve gotten from the CSA. The fruit has generally been very good, but I have not been thrilled with the veggies, and we have gotten a couple of items that have been downright dreadful (the green beans from a couple of weeks ago qualify). Being not super-enthusiastic about the produce we were receiving made me even less motivated to take pictures.

    That being said, we LOVE our trips to the farm to pick our own produce, and the farm itself is a really fun place to visit. I’m not sure if we’ll do the CSA again next year. We still have a month or so of late summer and fall produce to go, so I’m going to withhold final judgement until it is all said and done.

So as of now, my photography goal is to get caught up processing all the pics that I’m backed up on by a couple (almost 3?! Ack!) months. I’m not even considering another “project” until I get caught up on the family shots.

Kid is growing up ridiculously fast.

First Day of Preschool 1

The season is almost here. The Hokies start the season with a huge game against #5 Alabama in Atlanta, GA on September 5 (8:00PM, ABC) . If this doesn’t get you excited for the game, nothing will.

Go Hokies!

Because this week’s CSA photo was so pathetic, I thought I’d share some pics from a previous dish that we made with our CSA food. The only CSA item in this dish was the peaches. The blueberries were a supermarket special. The “mint” garnish is really basil from our garden. Next year I’m planting mint just to use as dessert garnish. The recipe is from The Art of Simple Food, by Alice Waters.

Peachy Blueberry Crisp
Peachy Blueberry Crisp - Ready for Eating!
Eating the Peachy Blueberry Crisp

I’m really not happy with this week’s picture. Boring, hazy, and generally uninteresting. Exposure and white balance are a little off, and I didn’t have the wherewithal to fix it in post. As an apology, a bonus week 9 post is forthcoming.

CSA Week 9

CSA Supplies Received:

“Donut” Peaches
Classic Freestone Peaches
Cabbage
Squash
Zucchini
Cucumber