Our Father…

    The “Our Father” is the perfect prayer since Christ himself taught it to us.  It is therefore so fitting we say it just before we approach the altar to receive communion.  I reminds us of the awesomeness of God, the reverence for his name, the greatness of his kingdom, the submission to his will required to be part of the kingdom on earth and in heaven.  The prayer then foreshadows the transubstantiation of Christ in the Eucharist by asking for our daily bread!  Finally it asks for forgiveness of our sins, and the openness we must have to forgive others who also come home to the Lord.  Why?  We are all sinners in a fallen world where temptation lurks everywhere.  We will all fall from time to time, and have a need to come back into the good graces of God.


PS  Sorry my thoughts are so jumbled this week.  I feel like I have a huge case of writers block!


The hour is almost here!

The hour is almost here! 

The hour is almost here! 

Are you ready?  Easter is. Day on the calendar, but the challenge to your faith in the one true God could come at any time.  Are you ready to carry your cross? 

I can only hope and pray I will not fail my Lord when my time comes.  That cross looks heavy to me!



Revisiting a shot…and Christ’s example today

I only learn with each visit how much more I have to learn...

I only learn with each visit how much more I have to learn…

    Two nights ago I read a very short essay on photography.  The author (Scott Bourne) exhorted readers to revisit a site time and time again.  To shoot the scene from above, below, left, right, with new settings and depth….all because in photography we try to capture three dimensions in a two dimensional frame.  When you also consider we artists may try to communicate a sense of the environment and emotion in those same two dimensions I think you can agree the task of making art communicate is actually harder than it looks.

    So that is why I again visited a familiar subject.  The cross in our sanctuary at St. Thomas Aquinas Church here in Alpharetta, Georgia.  I’ve heard a few sermons about Christ’s victory on the cross recently, and it made me think in new ways about those hours when he sacrificed himself for us.   Then last week I read about using flash with grid to isolate a subject in broad daylight.  Well I had no flash, but I could play with my exposure meter just enough to get me on my way to the same effect.  So in the silence of the church I was able conceive in my mind a vision of a piece of art I wanted to share.

    I wanted to convey the feeling the devil wanted Christ, and you and I, to feel when crucified or targeted by his dark friends.  I wanted to convey the sense of darkness surrounding Christ on the cross.  While I conveyed that, I also wanted to give us viewers a sense of hope.  I did that by making sure the inner light of the word made flesh shone out above the darkness.  I thought this might show how he gives hope to the world in our darkest moments.

    See I could also see, in the back of my mind, the terrible atrocities being committed against Christians in the Middle East.  Boys and girls my son’ Kevin’s s age are being tortured, and murdered, under the crucifixes of their churches because their hearts stand with God.  As a father and shepherd, my heart and gut is wrenched thinking of what happened to them.  I fear what could happen to my sweet children, if spiritual and martial defenses weaken in the slightest degree. The darkness is my fear revealed.

     I can also see the light.  Those young innocents and martyrs also demonstrate complete faith in Christ’s word.  They literally display the faith of a child in the face of men with weapons and fully developed strength.  Those children are the light of Christ on the cross, hands outspread, using their final acts of faith to call me to greater unity with God in my daily lives.

     I have so much more I need to learn and do to live the life God intended for me.  It makes me wonder who and where my next lesson will arise from.



Saint Thomas Aquinas

St. Thomas Aquinas

St. Thomas Aquinas

    St. Thomas Aquinas wrote millions of words in his lifetime.  Today was St. Thomas Aquinas’ feast day.  So my picture tonight is of his last work, the Shorter Summa.  I must say it is a masterpiece.  It says more in a paragraph than I can muster with a novel.  I am slowly working my way through it.  I can handle one chapter at a time.  Then I have to really meditate on what he said, because see I am just an old infantryman not used to such big thoughts.  Once I get it though, I am inspired for weeks.

    Been working the real job a total of 15 out of 16 days straight….so I’m a little tired but also creatively needy.  So when my patron saint’s day came up today, I just had to take a few minutes to enjoy it in my own special ways.  First I got to be with my kids, watch a few minutes of a movie, say a rosary with my daughter, and then grab the camera of course to remember the man for what he was most famous!  No I will be off to bed for a long winter’s nap!


PS To get the effects I experimented with gels on my flash.  It was quite fun!  Processed in Capture One 8, my current favorite editing suite.