May 31, 2007

La Liga Futbol

Hello again,
My buddy David Plechl, photog extraordinaire, who happens to freelance pretty regularly for the Daily Astorian asked me if I would come take some pix of his soccer team for his North Coast Soccer League blog La Liga.
I love shooting soccer, but haven't got the chance since I left Oregon five years ago — they don't play high school soccer over here for some reason... Anyways, it was fun, plus the light was great. These are a few pix from the game, which they won 5-2.

This one cracks me up. The guy in the forground is regretting a missed goal chance thinking the play is over, yet the action goes on right behind him with the keeper out of goal.

From the shadows a fearless futboler enters, Captian Green Sox, AKA David Plechl....

David's going to be updating and adding a couple other pix of mine from the game on his page probably later today, check it out, it's a cool league. They play every Wednesday at the fields in Warrenton. If you want more info drop David a line,


May 30, 2007


This week's lead front page feature is a photo story I did about local veteran Ron Black who has committed himself to playing "Taps" on his bugle at veteran funerals and observances. You can find the story here
You can also find a SoundSlides multimedia presentation of it here

Below is an outtake from the story that didn't make the paper. It took place at the Echo Taps Worldwide event at Tahoma National Cemetery on May 19. Black organized this state's part of this international event and it was very cool to get to hang with him at it. This photo was at the end of the service as a prayer is being offered.

Thanks to Ron and his family for putting up with me for a few weeks!

May 29, 2007

Most expensive camera ever?

I've come across this story a few different places now and thought I'd share it. A daguerreotype camera created a positive image rather than a negative like the most common type of photography through the 20th century. The positive image is once again commonplace now with digital photography, which records in that fashion.

This talk of buying expensive cameras got me thinking about my all-time favorite cameras that I've owned. A couple years back I could say that I had owned at one time or another just about every SLR body that Nikon ever made (including all the F series until the F6). That statement is no longer true as it seems that Nikon puts out a new DSLR every other day now...

Anyways, it is a mixed lot, but here it is, in no particular order, except number 1:

1. Nikon F5 AF SLR — By far my most favorite camera of all time. What's not to love, it did everything. Nuff said.
2. Voightlander Bessa R rangefinder — I caught the rangefinder bug in 2001, right around the time the paper I was at got into digital. I wasn't big on the whole digital thing, as I really didn't like the image quality. I guess this was kind of like my moment of revolt. Film Forever! Yeah, yeah. This was a fairly inexpensive way into the RF world. I later had a Leica M4-P, which I liked (but it was used and had a funny smell to it...) I still have this one though, and actually took it off my book shelf and was using it the other day. I still love the compact size and near silent operation. I really miss being able to use it for stories (no more film here...), as it was very easy to fall off into the background with such a small camera.
3. Nikon D2X digital SLR — This is what I use now and I love it. It's fairly close in size and shape as my beloved F5, but a little bulkier, heavier. The image quality is great though, and that is the important thing. The best digital I've ever used. I know lots of you are Canon users and are snickering perhaps, but that's cool.
4. Nikon FM manual SLR — This was the first camera I ever owned. My parents bought it for my 18th birthday in 1995 at the old Camera World store in downtown Portland while on a business trip. It wasn't exactly what I wanted (I was hoping for an N8008s, which at the time was pretty cool — I later owned two of them) but it was cool just the same. It was all manual and made me think a lot when shooting. I later got the MD-12 motordrive for it which shot at a blazing 3.5 frames per second (the F5 and D2X in HP mode shoot at 8 FPS).
5. Holga medium format "toy" camera — I got this from my friend Sol randomly in the mail one day in 2000. I have to admit that I haven't used this as much as I would like (getting 120 film developed around here can be a pain) but everytime I do I enjoy it. You have basically no control over anything and you never know how the pix are going to turn out. I think it's that mystery that makes it fun.


May 28, 2007

SPF 80 would have been nice...

I Spent the day at the Washington State 1A/2A track and field championships on Saturday. I thought I had it all together, everything I needed. I had my print out of the athletes and when their events were to take place, all the neccessary equipment. Had a bottle of water on my hip pack — and of course my aforementioned jumbo bag of seeds.
As I was driving to Mt. Tahoma High School Saturday I wondered if I should have brought a rainproof jacket though, as the whole way up it looked like the weather wasn't going to be all that great.
Much to my surprise however it turned out to be a very sunny day, really quite warm compared to our more brisk coastal climate. Needless to say, that one thing I should have had but didn't was sun screen — I go the worst sunburn I've had since my wedding day, which took place all outdoors (almost 9 years ago!!).

Another unfortunate thing was that only three of the 12 local athletes I was there to cover made it out of the prelims the day before so I had some time to kill throughout the day — around 2 hours between each race. So I got to check out some other events, including the combined wheelchair 800 meter final (above and below).

You can find other odds and ends from the meet at my Sportsshooter page

Here's an outtake that didn't make it into the paper this week (coming out Wednesday) of Ilwaco's Matt Kaino following his third place finish in the boys 400 meter final — he had been the top seed going into the race and lost the title by merely a whole second.

Thanks for stopping by,

May 25, 2007

Hurry up and wait

My grandmother was always good at summing up tenets of life into little phrases or sayings and one of her favorites — and one that she lived by — was "Hurry up and wait."
I remember first hearing this when I was maybe 10 or so when we were getting ready to be picked up to go somewhere by a family member. The person wasn't to arrive for another 20 minutes, yet there we were in the living room, ready and waiting. The idea behind "Hurry up and wait" was that you were prepared ahead of time for something in case it or they arrives earlier than you expected, you were ready. This also works for people or things arriving later than you originally though. This is kind of like the Boy Scout motto of "Be prepared," which also has also made an impression on my shooting mindset, but I'll get into that at another time.
Last Tuesday the Lady Washington, a replica tall ship, was to arrive at the Port of Ilwaco for the start of their now annual Nautical Rennaisance week. It was to be met by the Chinook Indian tribe in their canoes at the mouth of Baker Bay to greet them and perform a reenactment of historical trades between Native Americans and sailing ships from hundreds of years ago. I decided to get there around 1:30 pm, still plenty of time before things were really suposed to get going at 2 pm. Around 75 people were on hand for the event. Tribal drummers were drumming and handing out gifts of beaded necklaces and small trees. Soon enough 2 pm arrived — the time the reenactment was supposed to start — and no sign of the boats. 2:30 came and went, still no boats. A man wearing replica captains gear came walking up and he was quickly drafted by State Parks Ranger Aaron Webster to speak and tell stories to the evermore impatient crowd.

FInally the boats arrived at a couple minutes after 3 pm. I had gone through about half a bag of David's sunflower seeds, but I had also gotten a chance to look around a bit. I was originally going to just shoot from above, on the viewing platform at the park but after a closer look around (hey, I had the time) I found a rocky area below there that was right on water level, allowing me a better vantage of the trade reenactment.

The extra time also got my mind wondering where else may be a good place to view the ship as it sailed into port. From up on the road I found a nice grouping of tree branches that created an interesting border that the ship was travleing through. I really wanted to find something different this year from an event that I've now shot three years in a row.

By hurrying up and waiting, I think I got what I was looking for.


May 24, 2007


Hey there,
After posting some new photos in my sportsshooter page last weekend I was asked by my friend Craig about a shot I had from the 2B District track meet last week in Naselle. The picture is of Naselle's Kyle Burkhalter taking a leap in the triple jump finals. Craig commented that he liked the angle and perspective of it.

When I arrived at the meet I noticed that there had been a scaffolding set up on the infield next to the finish line of the track and had a video camera mounted on top to be used for photo finishes of the races.

It was also right next to the triple jump pit, which you can see to the right in this shot from earlier in the event.

After shooting him from this angle his first few jumps I realized that I wasn't getting what I wanted, plus I couldn't see his face when he jumped because he looks straight up while jumping. That's when I thought about putting that scaffolding to good use.

It just so happened that the former athletic director at the school was standing right next to it and he said it would be fine — so long as I didn't fall and kill myself. I told him I'd do my best not to. With it being located right above where the jumpers were taking off from I figured I'd be in good shape. When Kyle made his final jump I was able to get off about six frames from take-off to landing and I chose the one I did do to the elements lining up pretty well — his form completely over the sand, his head up. We used this shot as the secondary color piece on the sports page this week, as Kyle finished second in the event.

This Saturday I'll be up in Tacoma for the 1A state track meet where Ilwaco has 12 athletes competing, should be fun. This is actually the first time I've been to the state meet here in Washington as previously it has been held in either the eastern or central part of the state — a little out of our regular driving range. You can track the progress of the athletes on the WIAA Web site .

Thanks for stopping by, see ya soon,


May 23, 2007

Hey there, thanks for looking through my Picture Window

So, I guess I've been thinking about doing this kind of thing for a while, what with everyone else having one and thinking "That'd be kinda cool to do" while looking at others.

So what will you find here? Basically photo-related stuff for me and the Chinook Observer, where I work. The CO is a community paper that covers the south Pacific County area of the southern coast of Washington. We're small — we come out once a week — but we really have something going here, at least in my opinion. Pretty much everyone knows everybody else here in the area and that lends us to getting access to people's lives that probably isn't so easily afforded in larger areas. That's really one of the reason's why I love it here.

Every week we publish the "Life" section, which features a photo-driven piece that is at least one whole page, but can stretch to multiple pages if needed. It is usually accompanied on our Web site: with an audio slideshow or gallery.

I see this Blog as a way to further the connection started through the paper and our other online endeavors. What you will find here are outtakes from shoots that don't make the paper, behind the scenes stuff as to how this all comes together for me and the paper each week, a sneak peek at what's coming up in the paper, plus various rants and raves relating to photo stuff (and maybe a review or two of old jazz records).

I'm starting out this first one with an outtake of sorts. The photo seen here ran in the paper this week, but due to a postscript error, literally the bottom half of it was cropped out. I got this at a school carnival in Long Beach last Friday night. The boy is celebrating his success after throwing a strike at the dunk tank.

Anyways, will try and update most days so please feel free to check back regularly. And please visit the links listed here as well, it's good stuff!
see ya, and thanks for looking through my Picture Window