I’ve entered the Substack World

Somehow I got started recently with Substack.  I’m using it like a blog.  I don’t get much social engagement with this blog ( which is ok by me) I thought I’d try Substack.  I have one paid subscriber which is nice.  I try to be attentive to posting there for all subscribers but certainly for those that are paying for the feed.

Besides paid subscribers they also generate these little adds that you can use on your other social media platforms.

Horsecapades = Westernaires

Our neighbors have had their girls involved in the Westernaires for some time now.  They came around to sell us tickets to their annual Horsecapades show at the Western Stock Complex.  I bought them just to help them out never thinking that I would actually go.  Vicki wanted to go so we bundled up on a cold pre-snow Saturday and went.  It was very exciting and clearly these kids have learned a lot of skills, not the least of which is how to be part of a group with defined goals.

More Alfie Shots

I’ve had more time with the Alfie, Half Frame camera and even with the aperture of f/125 the pictures are not very sharp.  I can whine about this OR change how I think and use this camera.  If you think of it as a crappy plastic camera in half frame you will do better.  The much cheaper Kodak H35 does a much better job getting you sharp pictures.  There is even an upgraded version now , the H35N.  So in the final analysis I would NOT recommend the Alfie Half Frame unless you want a crappy camera photo platform , for which I am sure there are plenty of cheaper alternatives.

Fall Skies

I don’t think we look up enough.  The Fall sky with its blues as the backdrop to the color changes in the trees are really awe inspiring.  Just a few shots from the backyard.

Alfie Half Frame Review

I recently received via Kickstarter my Alfie Half Frame camera.  It has a rechargeable battery ( via USB), several different lenses mounted on a rotating lens turret: 33/8, 30/8, 25/56 and finally a pinhole 25/125.  It has a mechanical winding mechanism with rewind without having to set a rewind button. My first trial was a disaster because of the film I was using : Arista EDU 400 which appears to be best shot at ISO 250.  I also didn’t understand which lens I was using - it was easy to miss this detail in the manual.  The images presented here were done with the 33 f/8 lens - as they say not the sharpest tool in the shed.  I will of course try the f/125 pinhole which should help.  I got stuck in one of the menus and couldn’t figure out how to get out of it - Dave at Alfie Cameras was quick to get me straightened out - what he sent me should be in the manual and maybe it will end up there in the next iteration.  The build quality of the plastic body feels really robust.

The images below are clearly soft in their focus.  This is why I will be interested in the f/125.  That being said with the f/8 setting you get the ‘artistic’ crappy plastic camera mode in a half frame.

Adobe Love / Hate

I’ve had for a number of years a love hate relationship with Adobe.  When they went to a monthly subscription model I was not happy.  So I switched to Capture One which is a great program.  According to August Dering who teaches on the web - it has one of the best RAW developers out there.  BUT then Capture One went to a subscribe model as well.  GAME OVER>. Then I was tasked with teaching a BW photography course at CPAC and because most folks seem to use ADOBE products I started my subscription to their products.

The benefit of the subscription model is it keeps money flowing into the company hopefully for them to continue to innovate.  This certainly has happened with Photoshop and Lightroom - their latest effort is ” Lens Blur” which is amazing.  One press of a button the program figures out what is the central subject and then blurs the background.

Now this is just a sample - I wouldn’t want to blur this background typically but it gives you a sense of what this new feature offers.

Happy Little Accidents

I went out today to test a new half frame camera and I screwed up the exposures big time and the focus was way off.

Bur then I realized that I’ve been looking at some photos of Josef Sudden - famous photographer of Prague and his early stuff looks like mine.

So maybe there’s hope for me after all.  Here’s a video about the photographer

Hexar RF

I finally broke down and bought this camera again.  It is a rangefinder film camera that was made by Konica.  It took M Leica lenses although some folks back in the day said it didn’t focus right.  Many people have had zero problems with this.  It has standard 35 mm loading and motor wind build in. It is what the Leica M7 should have been.

Books Sold!

I know it’s pathetic but I did sell some of my “Prairie Madness” book out of a bricks and mortar store and got paid for it.  Parthenon Books in Syracuse, NY to be specific.  And because the Nobel Prize in literature has already been given away this year I’ll just have to wait patiently for 2024 !!

Hogg House is Sad

In my travels thru rural eastern Colorado I travel thru several small town.  Joes, Colorado is one such town.  I noticed that right on Highway 36 there was a motorcycle club.  I stopped and talked with two guys for the better part of a half hour.  Unfortunately the man on the right lost his battle with lung cancer.

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