Mildly Amusing Musings & Some Photographs

Posts tagged “Nikon

Flava in Ya Ear – May 15, 2012

I just uploaded my pictures to ADAY.ORG for their worldwide photo project.  The goal was to capture your daily life in ten photos shot on May 15, 2012.  I worked that day but I also had to to take Big Papi to Mini to have his power steering replaced.

My loaner was a 2012 Mini Countryman.  I loved the color & the SiriusXM.  I didn’t have anyone with me to take advantage of the extra roomy backseats but they looked really nice.   There was a sunroof for the front & a moon roof for the rear but I still prefer the full convertible.

Most of the day was grey & rainy & my workload was so spread out that I didn’t have much time during work to shoot anything outside of my route.  Around noon, I decided to take advantage of the loaner Mini’s SiriusXM radio & I started shooting what I was listening to as well as a photo of what was outside at that time.  Syncing the photos to the radio photos was a task I would never complete in a timely fashion & I couldn’t find just ten that worked well for the project.   This made me miss SiriusXM & it also made me want a radio that displayed all the titles of what I listen to.  I suppose an iPod would work too but I liked the idea of selecting from 100+ stations that I didn’t control.  I did take a break from the radio for a little bit to re-take the “There’s A Law” shot I missed last time I had a loaner.

Subsequently, I tested some of the other CDs I had with me to see which would register the song titles.  Besides those few, here is what I listened to May 15 between 11:57am & 6:13pm when I returned the loaner.

I wound up not getting the power steering repaired because they saw my brakes & tires as a bigger safety issue & I just couldn’t afford both.  Big Papi & I are in a very abusive relationship.  Whenever something breaks, I feel like I should sell him & get something cheaper to fix but then I see him & drop his top & our love affair continues…

I really love my expensive, little buddy. His brakes, two tires, a belt and an oil change came to $1100.  The power steering & new related hoses will be in excess of $1500 but they said I can’t damage it anymore than it already is & I can continue to drive him without power steering.  K turns are now Super Triple W turns but otherwise I almost prefer the tighter steering & my arms really could use the workout.  Already the driving muscles I used to have from driving the Dart are coming back.  I wish the Dart would come back too.


“I’ll close my eyes & listen to you read the story…”

I keep not finishing any of the SXSW posts that I start writing because I am too lazy to upload the photos for the third time (they’re already on facebook & flickr) SO I am just going to post a bunch of highlights, starting with my most favorite moment.

During the BLURT Magazine/ Dogfish Head IPA party at The Ginger Man on Friday, March 16, 2012 at SXSW…

This is Jon Auer & Ken Stringfellow playing/singing “Solar Sister” about five feet away from me.   I am not able to post my own video of this event because someone (me) was screaming a bit too loudly.  I get excited. I can’t help it, especially when I’m in an open space & may have consumed a few glasses of wine.  You can see a great video of it here & be sure to listen up for a special name change in the middle.  When I heard it live, I thought it was just my imagination.  Actually, this whole night was nearly out of my imagination.

Earlier in the evening, Ken started his set with my most favorite of his songs, “Any Love (Cassandra et Lune)” & also played my second favorite, “One Morning” as well as a boatload of great new songs whose titles I don’t know.

Mmmmm… Gretsch.  I love Gretsch.

I have continued my trend of being too close to get good shots.  Luckily, I have great memories despite having a crappy memory.  I shot this with my newly acquired Sony Mavica CD-400.   When we stopped in Delaware on the way to Texas, my brother gave me it because he wasn’t using it anymore.  I had previously had the 300, 400 & 500.  As my dad upgraded, I would get the old one.  I would then find a way to crack the LCD screen.  One time it was because someone said they saw a snake & I fell while running away.  Motherfuckin’ snakes.   Unfortunately, we weren’t in any one place long enough to charge the batteries fully so I didn’t shoot too much with this.

This was also our first time seeing Jon Auer solo.  His “Burn & Shine” medley was particularly exceptional.  He didn’t break any strings though. This might be the first time we’ve seen him play & not break a string.

His open hand was begging for a glowing orb.

I know driving to Texas isn’t free, but did I mention this was a free show?  It was AND there was more greatness to follow when Jody Stephens joined in for some rollicking Big Star songs.

Many special guests came out, including some of the great “Third” singers/players, John Doe, the guy from Blitzen Trapper, Ian Moore & Peter Buck from R.E.M.  I kept thinking Peter Buck looked like Bill Murray so I couldn’t say hello because I kept laughing, expecting him to start reciting “Groundhog’s Day” lines (because I am sure that is what the real Bill Murray does when he isn’t loading Tia Carrere’s band van).

I should start taking notes of set lists or get a new battery for my video camera so I can at least have a poor recording to reference.  Suffice it to say that this only fed my frenzy of adoration for these guys.  Every time we see them together, I fear it will be the last time & I don’t ever want that to be the case.  I do want the next show to be somewhere where it is ok to dance though.  The sitters behind me weren’t too keen on my desire to dance to “September Gurls.”  I hate sitting down almost as much as I hate being quiet.

These guys are the greatest.  Induct them into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame now please (& don’t forget John Fry).

My Nikon D70 – The Best of What’s Around

For over a year, I have worried that my Nikon D70 will just die.  I have taken well over 100,000 images with it.  I can no longer count them because round about February, the weird end-of-file errors turned into an image saving problem.  I can no longer just leave the actual file numbers as my file names because every time I stop shooting, the camera starts a new folder & renames the images within starting at DSC_0001.  For instance, if I take pictures of 15 different things while I am driving, I will have 15 files named “DSC_0001,” each of them in a separate folder.  While this makes uploading files to the pc way longer than it used to, it is highly tolerable but less fun than my April problem.  That is when the lcd screen died.  Luckily, the camera was set at ISO 200 & shady white balance at the time so I can still use it for daytime driving shots. 

While I would prefer to shoot manual (except for focus), I have relegated myself to aperature priority mode.  For live shows, I have to use manual mode or Nikon will pretend there is only enough light to shoot at one second shutter speeds & that just won’t work.  For shows with really great light, I can get away with 1/60.

Boyd Tinsley

(C) Conn!

 For shows with no light, I am stuck using a flash (where allowed).   This is where I have the most fun.  Not only do I have to set the flash, but I also have to figure out a good angle for it to bounce & an appropriate shutter speed & aperture.  It is a crap shoot, almost like shooting film.  Almost.  Unfortunately, I now want to only edit the Nikon show photos because I already saw the Canon ones & know that I don’t like them.  The Canon has been soft focusing & pretty slow lately.  It is probably going to die soon too.  I just hope that it lingers the way the Nikon has been doing because I really like coming home to images like this.

(C) Conn!

Is it perfect?  No.  Is it as good as what I could get with better equipment?  Not by a long shot, but today’s lesson is make the best of what you have & don’t rely on automatic settings because they might not always be there.  If I had always shot in automatic, I would have a bit of trouble getting anything to turn out…. or maybe not.  Maybe I would just keep it in automatic now even without the screen & not be bothered.  Hmmm… There is no lesson here afterall.  Oh, except that my pop-up flash died years ago & full automatic won’t let me shoot without it.  Maybe Nikon could just sponsor me with another D70… or a nice lens.  I’ll make it work.  Promise.  I love my Nikon.


“I’ll never drown my sorrow in the warm glow of your wine…”

I completely forgot to post these pictures from Wanda Jackson’s February 11, 2010 show at The Knitting Factory – Brooklyn. 

I found out about Wanda Jackson in 2007 when we went to TN for the first time.  We were in the Country Music Hall of Fame when I saw her playing “Hard Headed Woman” on the video loop.  I had no idea that any woman was rockin’ like that in the 1950’s.  It is with great pleasure that I must say she still has “it” at 72 years old.  What an amazing show!

The Lustre Kings opened for her & served as her backing band.

Of course, the record sold out before I got one 😦


Driving into spring…

I would much rather sit and mess around with pictures or watch a movie than take the time to update this so here are some Jan/Feb driving shots mixed with some fixed shots from “the shore.” 

I had a terrible headache the other night & didn’t feel like doing much so I decided to play with some pictures.  This started off as a black & white photo.  I was originally going to just paint color onto the sign. Then, I wanted to paint the car.  Then, I got lost in my head & wound up with this.  I wish my license plate really was a pair of lips.

“My first sin was the fear that made me old…”

At last, here are some more shots from Brian Fallon’s Bowery Ballroom show January 15, 2010.  Brian was awesome despite a crowd of comedians insistent upon interrupting every break in song with their incessant attempts at changing the setlist.  In plain English, there were a lot of assholes who kept shouting song requests.  My favorite was when someone yelled for “We Came To Dance.”  Brian responded by saying, “No, you came to scream [from the balcony]…”  It was a real shame because the stories Brian was telling before & after the songs were pretty special.  Also, while I love a good cover here & there, I really enjoy Brian’s music so the cries for covers were even more obnoxious.  This crowd was horrendous.  I have no idea why they were there.   All I know is that Brian Fallon was a real professional about it & I cannot wait to see/hear him again.  I am eagerly awaiting a new album of songs to keep my radio happy this summer.

With Dave Hause from The Loved Ones

“Seems like there ain’t nobody wants to come down here no more…”

I can’t drive through the Freehold countryside without thinking of my dad & the music of Bruce Springsteen.  My dad went to school with Bruce.  Unlike most Bruce fans of his age, my dad readily admitted that he had no idea who Bruce was when they were in school. My dad moved from Freehold in 1967.  He had lived on a farm in an area that has since been plowed over by Rte 33.  While I never got to see exactly where it was, I do know that the area in the image below is less than a mile away. 

Freehold, NJ

“They’re closing down the textile mill across the railroad tracks
Foreman says these jobs are going boys and they ain’t coming back to your