Playing With Fire

If you know me, you know that I love fire.  If you don’t know me, it’s not a scary-dangerous love, so don’t worry.  Yes, I am painfully aware that I’m not supposed to be shooting pictures of fire because it can harm my sensor.  But I couldn’t pass this up.  I had no willpower once we threw a couple of packets called “Mystical Fire” into the fire ring.  We were camping at Scenic View Campground in Warren, right on the stony banks of the Baker River.  I happened upon these little packets in the camp store while looking for glow jewelry for my daughter.  I didn’t think they’d do anything as they just looked like a camping gag, so I slipped them into the fire while nobody was looking.  I had to explain what I did when people started asking why the fire was changing colors.  This was insanely cool!  I had to buy more for future Mystical Fires!  Pure entertainment – not for cook-fires.

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If anyone wonders, my sensor is intact and doesn’t appear to have suffered.  I’m thankful.  I had a passing moment or two of wondering if it would be worth it, but I love how the images came out like abstract art.  It makes me want to start a new oil project, but I might just have to print a series of these for my bathroom walls.  The colors that screamed the most were blue and green, but there was red, pink and purple in the flames too – the perfect compliment to my color scheme.


You Know You’re a Graphic Designer When…

graphic design

You Know You’re a Graphic Designer When …

You have bags under your eyes so big you’d have to check them in at Heathrow Airport

You watch the superbowl just for the commercials

You can spot bad typography from 100 yds away

You are pro-facebook because 95% of the myspace accounts burn your retinas

You can name more than 200 fonts in under five minutes

You are completely immune to subliminal advertising

You look upon a well-designed project with either: sympathy OR extreme jealousy

Your hand is permanently stuck in the shape of a mouse

You tell stories of exacto-knife inflicted wounds with grizzled sort of pride

You practically take caffeine intravenously

You have an appreciation for everything unique

You’ve been spending three days non-stop on a project and it still looks like shit. You find yourself overcome by Deathlust.

“You find your pulse increase at the sight of a lovely ligature, glasses steam up when an unusually elegant arm, leg, or tail comes in view, and a well-kerned paragraph is apt to make you break into a sweat with excitement.”

“You know you’re a Graphic Designer when… you buy a CD or DVD for the artwork, even if you have no idea what the actual music or film is like”. (even worse, you don’t actually watch or listen to it, just stare at it for hours and hug it in adoration)

“You know you’re a Graphic Designer when… you look at the clock and see it’s about midnight and think ‘I’ll go to bed now’… and you actually go to bed about 2-3am”.

“You know you’re a Graphic Designer when… you need someone else to point out that you’re sitting in a room in front of the computer with all the lights off, and haven’t noticed”

“…when you know what “kerning” is and you really, really like it.”

“… when you wear two [ke] [rn] pins on your bag, and only you know what the mean. To others its probably a band of sorts..”

Forget the boy-wonder and the man of steel; your heroes have names like ‘Tibor Kalman’, ‘Stefan Sagmeister’, ‘Paul Rand’, and ‘Paula Scher’.

You don’t wear black to look cool, you wear it to hide the gauche.

You have a thing for chairs. You don’t know why.

You giggle whenever you use the colors F0CCED, EFF0FF and 44DDDD

You’re in the sun and you look around for a Drop Shadow to sit under.

You give your relatives a lecture about color spaces and profiles when you email them your vacation photos.

Seeing someone use Lens Flare or Comic Sans adversely affects your blood-pressure

You maintain a grid system for your refrigerator magnets.

You organize your CD collection according to the Pantone chart.

You sit at work for eight hours straight just looking at your monitor, waiting for a spark of inspiration that doesn’t come.

You’re up ’til 5am because you came up with the best idea ever while brushing your teeth.

The hottest dream you ever had was “Trace contour… Find Edges… Pinch… Extrude… Smudge Stick… Motion Blur…. Sprayed Strokes…”

You know Lorem Ipsum by heart.

Your kid knows Lorem Ipsum by heart.

The preschool teacher complains your child won’t color inside or outside the lines – only indicate colors on a separate sheet.

Activating your entire font collection makes your computer crash

You deliberately butcher your perfectly cross browser compatible site in IE by placing a “Too Cool for IE” banner on it.

You prefer a Layer Style of 50% Opacity (or less) on your wife’s Satin.

You spend $200 on a font for your personal website because “it’s the only one where the lower-case g is just right…”

Looking at a menu make you go “hmmm, ITC Baskerville italic” rather than “mmmm, lunch!”

And when you finally order, you go for Layer Based Slices with Grain Texture…

You use words about fonts you dislike that other normal people reserve for fascist dictators and serial killers.

Apple+Z is the first thing that goes through your mind if you drop and break something.

You refer to colleagues as Strict, Transitional, Loose and the Future Unemployed.

You refer to your privates as “the Magic Wand”.

You know that rivers are more than just water.

Your best friends are all employees at the local print shop

The only people who seem to know what you do for a living are other Graphic Designers (ex: Graphic Design? What’s that? You’ll never be able to make a living being an artist!)

Kerning and leading on your shopping list actually matters to you, and you don’t see a problem with that.

Several South American economies suffer noticeably any time you try to give up coffee, or even cut your consumption of it by half.

You know that “bleeding” doesn’t hurt.

when your significant other/ friends have threatened to never speak to you again if you point out one more font to them.

when you know the difference between fuchsia, magenta, and maroon.

If you could go back in time you wouldn’t go back to see the rise and fall of civilizations, you’d go back in time to destroy comic sans and papyrus.

You stare at one word for 20 minutes second-guessing the spelling because it just doesn’t look right.  It’s the font.

Your 6-year-old child’s favorite color isn’t red or blue, it’s P659.

You can understand everything on this list.


We once had a goldfish named 811.  Seriously.

Disclaimer:  This list has been kicking (slightly changing) around for a few years now, and I just happened to run across it and decided to share.Have a great day!

Squam Lake Wildlife

Tucked into Holderness, New Hampshire is a place called Squam Lake Science Center.  If you’re looking for a cool place that features local wildlife, with nature classrooms and live exhibits, look them up!  I love taking pictures of animals and many of these animals seemed content to pose or snooze through my visit.  I got caught up at the Mountain Lions because – well, who wouldn’t?  They were stretching, pacing and visiting the kids through the glass.  The kids thought they were so cute and cuddly – obviously they didn’t get the same feeling in their gut that the adults get when they stare at you.  There’s plenty to do for kids and adults alike, and lots of staff available for just about any questions you might have.  Certain times of day they have “classrooms” that can be either outside or inside and usually feature some cool local animal.  We missed the coyote classroom, but we were getting to the big cats when it started and we couldn’t turn back.  There is information and education in every single corner.  Loved it!

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If you are interested in Squam Lake Science Center, visit‎ and you will not be disappointed!

Otis “Ducky the Donk”

This is Otis.  He is a Redbone Coonhound & Bloodhound mix.  He is full of it.  He is red, his paws are webbed (Ducky – dubbed by our daughter), and he’s stubborn (Donk – dubbed by me).  We’re used to stubborn though and he still has yet to prove that he’s more stubborn than me.  When he’s not chasing the cat and she’s not digging her claws into his snout, he’s chewing (teething) on anything we forget to put away or jumping in the tub during our daughter’s bathtime.  We picked him up a little over a month ago and he’s already doubled in size.  At 4 months he’s getting close to 50 lbs and has plenty of growing left in him.  I decided to test out my new softbox one day, threw up a background and put his basic training to a test, and this is what I came up with.  He’s a good boy.  Isn’t he stinking cute?

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Rebecca & Kris

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This is my beautiful cousin, Rebecca and her fiance, Kris.  They decided to have me to take their wedding pictures coming up at the end of April!  I am very excited as this will be my first solo wedding, and I can’t wait to document the day for them as I also take part in the family festivities.  We have an incredible, loving, happy family, which no doubt will be on full display for my camera.  I can’t wait!

On this engagement shoot, we walked all over Collinsville and Burlington, CT to get these pictures.  Mud, burrs, rocks & barbed wire couldn’t stop us from getting some great shots!  The great thing about engagement sessions is they are usually the first portraits of the couple and everyone is a little excited but nervous at first.  There are some nice, natural moments that can be caught before the comfort sets in.  Once the ice is broken the images just start happening and before you know it, there are too many good ones to choose a favorite.  It didn’t take long for Becky and Kris to get in the zone, which is no surprise because their personalities won’t allow for anything less.

Stay tuned, more on this beautiful couple to come this spring!

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