Sunday, January 31, 2010

choices

choices


This is another shot from the abandoned high school in Helena, Arkansas. The way the light filtered into the building was wonderful. This was one of the few times I shot 100% manual. I was able to capture a bit more mood exposing it myself. I've since learned that exposure bias can help me do the same thing with a little less work.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

mixed signals

mixed signals


I got lost took a detour to Hagarville, Arkansas one day. I found a bunch of cool, weathered buildings. Since I had the Holga with me it turned into a great little side trip. I really liked this building and the broken antenna.

Friday, January 29, 2010

rule of thirds

rule of thirds


This is Haw Creek Falls in Johnson County, Arkansas. It's a lovely little waterfall. There happens to be two other fairly well known falls nearby. I attempted to make my way to one of those, Packrat Falls, and took off in the wrong direction down Haw Creek. (Packrat isn't even downstream of Haw Creek Falls by the way. It's actually upstream on another smaller feeder creek.) After going over a mile in the wrong direction I came upon a road and realized my mistake. I wasn't going to tell that story, but it turns out two other photographers that I know have more since then I do have done the same thing. (The guilty shall remain nameless. Haha.)

Thursday, January 28, 2010

spork at your own risk

spork at your own risk


I saw the "Not Responsible for accidents" and I was left wondering what prompted the sign. Was it an incident similar to the scalding hot coffee at McDonald's? Did someone choke on a hot dog? Did a plastic knife actually cut something for once? Or was there a deadly spork standoff? (A snack attack!) These are things I need to know.

This was taken at the Booger Hollow Tabernacle. The place was pretty interesting, although I probably say that mostly because of the name.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

be cool man be cool

be cool man be cool


The roads at Camp Orr are pretty rough. Some would say they were too rough for my car. My tires seemed to agree, because I ended up with a flat tire after this trip. My father and a few friends worry about such trips. I need an old 4WD I can take on photo adventures.

Anyway, I liked this sign. It is just before the road takes a much sharper decline. It was a mile of very steep and windy roads down to Triple Falls.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

sorrow

sorrow


The mood around this building near Keo, Arkansas was a sad one. I couldn't help but feel that not much goodness or life was here. Certain places give off that feeling. You might think it's just that it's abandoned and overgrown, but I've seen abandoned places that still felt happy, and some like the Blytheville Laundry Cleaners still felt like it had life.

Anyway, I felt sad here, so I was rather happy when I got the Holga shot back and it seemed to capture the same moodiness.

Monday, January 25, 2010

expansive

expansive


Here's another shot from the trip to Flatside Pinnacle with Zack. This is one of those shots that had a high ISO. The view up there is amazing. We got there about two hours before sunset, but I enjoyed every bit of waiting around for sunset. I have a feeling it would take a long, long time for a view like that to get old.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

a trip into the fog

a trip into the fog


Yet another fog shot. I was pretty happy with how a lot of these turned out. Fog tends to make everything a little more eerie and interesting doesn't it?

Saturday, January 23, 2010

holiday house

holiday house


It's a bit late to be posting a festive image, but whateve. I head out to the Arkansas State Capitol to capture some of the holiday decorations. I managed the shots sans tripod in some fairly low light. I guess I hadn't been inside the Capitol since a Elementary School field trip. I had forgotten just how grand everything feels in there. I might have to go back and try to get some pictures without the decorations.

Friday, January 22, 2010

spiritual building blocks

spiritual building blocks


I spotted this little church in Scott, Arkansas a while back. I didn't manage any good shots then, so I had it in mind for a reshoot for a while. I wanted to give it the Holga treatment. Here's a wider view of the place:

keeping the faith

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

hit the road, jack

hit the road, jack


I'm a sucker for a good vanishing point and/or road shot. I try my best to only take these on a fairly straight stretch of road, because I like life more than a good photo. I finally managed to get a decent one in the fog. Usually the fog isn't thick enough for this to work right. I played around with curves in Photoshop until the roadside blended better and the yellow line popped. I hope you guys like the edit!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

directing

directing


Photography is a lot of things for me. I use it to remember and document my life. I use it to kill time. I use it as an excuse to go explore. It makes me happy. Sometimes it's a distraction and I use it to cope when something bad has happened. Maybe it's my adult version of a security blanket. It tends to be something I can go no matter what is going on. Sometimes it reinforces joy and sometimes it creates joy from the ashes of whats broken.

It's funny I can look at most of my pictures and tell what sort of mood I was in, even if it was a mood I didn't recognize at the time.

I was in a mood and took off for Northwest Arkansas for a few days in early December. I spent most of my time wandering in a haze just thinking about life and taking pictures. I came home in a better state of mind and with some pretty cool pictures. The shot above was taken in Prairie Grove, Arkansas. I love finding interesting little churches.

Monday, January 18, 2010

busting out

busting out


If cameras were people my 40D would be the type to just give in to whatever I say. If it did something weird it'd be from my own short-sightedness. There is no real surprises with the 40D. My holgas are like the friends you have for life yet never know what they will do next. It's a wild card. I've had entire rolls of film be rubbish. I actually been close a few times to throwing my 120N in the trash. I've thought, "Forget it. I'll use up the rest of this film, then I'm done!" Then the Holga turns things around and kicks out some great photos. If it were a relationship, Miss Holga and I would list our status as "it's complicated" on Facebook.

Miss Holga and I seem to be in a good place when it comes to black and white film. I shot two rolls back-to-back about a month ago. Every shot ended up being something I loved. Above is a shot from Scott, Arkansas. I like a lot of the little towns on Lonoke County. There's so many interesting old buildings.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

pinch me

pinch me


I'm pretty grounded even if I do tend to be a bit arty and weird at times. It's rare I catch myself in what feels like a waking dream. It's so, so rare to completely (100%, from my head to my toes, from inside out) enjoy life. It's a blessing when it happens. This was one of those days. I tend to get a lot of great photos on these days. Here's some examples. (1 | 2 | 3)

As I've mentioned Dismal Creek happens to be a gem. It's one of the most beautiful areas I've been lucky enough to explore. The sight of a waterfall (The Glory Hole) that has slowly formed a hole through the bluff it once flowed over is breathtaking. It seems so fragile yet powerful at the same time.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

watching water rise

watching water rise


People don't seem to see much value in Lake Conway. I've always liked it. I find all the trees and stumps interesting. I say that, but growing up my dad took mom and I out on a small fishing boat and got stuck on a stump. (I think it was at Lake Conway anyway.) I was very young and afraid of the water. I started imagining the boat would tip over before the end of it. My mom was already laughing hysterically that we were stuck. I started crying out of fear. My dad was flustered that we were stuck, and he started cussing. I imagine if anyone had happened to see a family cussing, laughing, and crying they would have thought we were crazy.

I think depending on your view of the world the lake makes for great photos. I've gotten a few beautiful sunsets on the lake and managed to make myself late meeting friends. The day I took this shot was not a good sunset day, but the bleakness meant I could get some decent moody black and white shots.

Friday, January 15, 2010

slipping and sliding

slipping and sliding


This is a small cascade along Dismal Creek. I find the name of the creek fascinating, mostly because it's one of the prettiest creeks I've seen. How it could ever be called dismal is beyond me. I caught myself imagining some great accident or something along the creek that might have caused someone to view it as dismal.

There are tons of waterfalls and cascade along this creek. It also forms the waterfall The Glory Hole. I will post a shot of that soon.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

the forbidden unknown

the forbidden unknown


I love fog shots. I always get a tad jealous when I see a great shot someone's taken in the fog. Mostly because I always manage to miss fog. Having said that, I guess you can imagine that I was tickled pink when I was out shooting and "thick as pea soup" fog slowly formed. I probably stopped at every interesting tree and fence post until I had driven out of the fog. I know all the other people on this highway weren't very happy with me.

This shot was taken on my way home from the Glory Hole. No, I haven't formed any new, seedy interests as of late. The Glory Hole happens to be an amazing waterfall located near Fallsville, Arkansas. (I so didn't mention the Glory Hole for google search hits either.)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

let it snow

let it snow


Well folks, I type this in the midst of a record breaking cold year. Here in Arkansas temperatures below freezing are almost unheard of. We've had many, many days under freezing. I guess that's great news for the bug population next year though. We've even had some snow, though Little Rock has seen very little of that.

It's a widely known fact I'm a bad driver. I don't test my skills when it starts to snow (or mostly ice). We had a bit of snowfall last week, and I wanted to capture it. Here's a self portrait I took in my backyard to celebrate the snow. It was only a dusting here, but up North they got a bit more snow to enjoy.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

rocky waters

rocky waters


This picture sparked a discussion on Flickr about the blue-green water that's present in most of the Ozarks. I hadn't given it much thought other than knowing it was either something living in the water (doubtful since it's so wide-spread) or some sort of sediment suspended in the water. I, however, didn't know enough to claim to be an expert and post why.

I asked my on-call expert, Brian Cormack, about it. Here's what he posted:

    The blue-green water in the Ozarks is from tiny suspended particles of limestone in the water. The minerals in the water cause it to reflect this particular wavelength of light back out of the water. The creeks and rivers get the bits of limestone from the rocks and cliffs that make up the Ozark plateau.

Anyway, if anyone wondered there's the explanation. This is Six Finger Falls which is created by Falling Water Creek. It's near the small town of Ben Hur, Arkansas. There's a few very pretty waterfalls along this creek. Most of which are viewable from the road.

Monday, January 11, 2010

spit free zone

spit free zone


I try to take my camera with me if I'm headed anywhere remotely interesting. (That basically means anywhere I go.) Even if I don't stop for pictures, I tend to view the world around me a little differently when I have a camera with me.

This shot above is a great example. It's in Cabot, Arkansas and located a few buildings down from my dogs' vet. I had to have seen the place dozens of times. However, this was the first time I've noticed it. I love the hand-painted signs all over the walls. I love the fake leather couch sitting outside. I especially love the warnings not to spit on the slab!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

on edge

on edge


I met up with Zack for a shooting trip at Flatside Pinnacle. This was the first time I'd met him and the first time I'd been out to Flatside. It was a lot of fun other than I forgot to set my ISO and left it on auto. It ended up picking an ISO much higher than I'd like for some shots. I decided not to fret about that too much though. A little noise never hurt anyone...right? It's like film grain.

Flatside Pinnacle is in Perry County. Despite the similar name, it is a different mountain from Pinnacle Mountain. This is great, because I'm still mad at Pinnacle Mountain for the angle sprain from last Spring.

Anyway, the sunset ended up being a little flat, but it was still worth the trip out there just for that amazing view. I just can't imagine having many worries in life standing at the top of Flatside and looking out over the Ouachita National Forest.

Friday, January 1, 2010

december 2009 (best of)

I've slowed down with shooting in December. Winter makes me cranky. I did manage a few shots I'm proud of though.

'tis the season


I went to the Christmas Light lighting ceremony at the Arkansas State Capitol this year. It's the first time I've been. It was cold, but I still had a lot of fun. Actually the joy I felt as a kid during the holiday season resurfaced for a brief time. My face was numb but I still know I was smiling. There's something to be said about free hot chocolate, friends, Christmas music, and decorations.

a walk to remember


Here's one from Eureka Springs. This was taken inside the Crescent Hotel. Rumor is the hotel is haunted. People run around with cameras trying to capture orbs. I actually got a few myself, but they were light reflections off the ceiling fan. I still sort of believe in that stuff and would love to stay there overnight.

congressional christmas


I went back to the Arkansas State Capitol to capture the holiday decorations inside. Even in the middle of the day on a weekday I'd have to patiently wait for quite a while for areas to clear out. These decorations are pretty popular. The Capitol is beautiful as it is, but with decorations it really shines!

the CAT prowls


I wanted a picture of the trolley in front of the Capital Hotel and Stephens Inc. for a while now. The light or sky was always wrong. This day I hadn't even planned that shot, but the trolley happened by when I was there so I finally got the shot!

pinch me


The Glory Hole is an amazing place. I spent part of Christmas Eve there, and it really was glorious.