Signs of Thanksgiving


This downtown Roswell attraction is where I might go to celebrate finishing my healthy weight correction strategy…and I go into maintenance mode.

This might be a good time to explain one of my thought processes and creative exercises.

I used a 43mm prime on and APS-C body for most of my walk through of Roswell this weekend. This gives me about a 63mm equivalent, or mild telephoto, lens. I used this one lens for 90% of my shooting that day.

Why shoot with one lens? Why leave the standard zoom behind? The answer is to enhance my creativity. I know this sounds contrarian, but it works when I have the mission to be creative.

If you put a prime on, you are forced into looking at the world from a fixed focal length. You give up the versatility of a zoom, but you normally get a stronger optic at one focal length. The way you change the photo becomes limited to aperture, shutter speed, ISO and foot powered perspective change. Ok there are other things but you get the point…focal length is fixed. So you have to contemplate image creation with a limitation, but hopefully a stronger optic at that specific focal length than a zoom would provide.

It is this limitation that ignites my imagination. It forces me to examine options I would probably miss by taking an easier route with a zoom.

Look around the world and I think you will find this is no different than the rest of life. It is also rather important when creating spiritual growth. Many of the best retreats take away something we are used to, external worldwide communications. This separation from the rest of the world removes the noise which often prevents us from contemplating what keeps us apart from God.

As we prepare for the wall of family, commercial marketing, and noise of this season figure out how best to put some focus on giving thanksgiving to him who gave us all things.


Family Ties


Many things in life today take us away from splendid pleasures family’s used to share. My lovely wife does a very good job of making sure our family slows down whenever possible to recognize such golden moments. This photo records one of those times.

My mother-in-law spent a year learning new techniques and searching out patterns to sew us a huge quilt. The quilt says little things about American history in a very lovely, folksy and informative way. It means a lot to us because we are an Americana loving couple.

So this photo records a moment where she took the time to demonstrate this quilt. Carrie explained stories, special sewing techniques and the small attention to details Grandma put into it. We are doing our best to make sure the kids can understand the difference between this work of art, and a Walmart import special.

We only put value on things we understand and experience. This is a moment we intend to repeat from time to time to make our children and family aware of the talents and values we hold dear..we’ll pray it takes root and makes trees reflecting the best sum of their ancestors.


Happy Fall Day

Today was a happy fall day in Roswell, Georgia.  I enjoyed company of visiting family, and the warmth of their love matched the warm fall day.

Roswell is a very nice town, just north of Atlanta on the north bank of the Chattahoochee River.  Originally a milling town for textiles and lumber, it grew into a quiet suburb of Atlanta over the last 35 years.

Our downtown has a little historical center, often used for movies and promotional photo shoots.  Today I was able to take a walk down the street and catch a few photos.  While we were walking back, the setting sun was too low to obtain any good photos along most of the steet.  I didn’t put my camera away though.  Just a few feet short of the car the sun poked through a cloud and illuminated this cute doll.  Since my camera was still out and on, it took but a second to frame and shoot three shots with different creative settings.

Just like everything in life, we always need to be prepared.  The best camera you have is the one you have with you.  The best camera available is the one out and powered up.

It is a metaphor for us all as we face the many challenges of our lives.  When faced with an ethical choice do we have tools needed to negotiate them ready?  Do we have the background materials available to study the problem in greater depth?  Do we have our courage up and ready to defend what we know is right in the face of serious straw men challenges? Are we ready for deep cutting personal attacks rather than philosophical or logical ones?

We will never know the time or day of our greatest crisis, but we are all called to be ready to the utmost of our abilities.  God will help carry us though the rest, but only if we prepared for the test.


PS Stand by for a few more Roswell photos over the next week!