Musings on Photography

Epilogue

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul Butzi on August 26, 2010

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Some combination of running out of things to say, a desire to sort things out privately for a while, some need for a different balance in my life, and general weariness with things internet has kept me from posting here for some considerable time, now. I may start other blogs, with different styles or different subjects. I have a handful of ideas for various bloggy experiments, and I might give one or two of them a try.

For now, though, my blogging experiment is ended. To all the folks who have been reading, my most sincere thanks. I’d be delighted to keep up email correspondence with any and all.

Gentle breath of yours my sails
Must fill, or else my project fails,
Which was to please. Now I want
Spirits to enforce, art to enchant,
And my ending is despair,
Unless I be reliev’d by prayer,
Which pierces so, that it assaults
Mercy itself, and frees all faults.
As you from crimes would pardon’d be,
Let your indulgence set me free.

William Shakespeare, The Tempest, epilogue

SoFoBoMo 2010

Posted in Solo Photo Book Month by Paul Butzi on July 15, 2010

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I’ve just finished my book for SoFoBoMo 2010. You can view it/download it here.

My experiment this year was to pick a subject that was a little different for me, and to see how relaxed I could make the process. I used the format I’ve used for my online portfolios instead of a more book-like format, and I deliberately didn’t stress (much) about the photo quality. The photos were (more or less) made in two sessions of a few hours each, with most of the photos coming from the first session. Having all the layout/design decisions already done made assembling the book itself a pretty brief task. I got some editing help from my friend Alex, and despite a few bobbles I had the book done in short order after that.

I think it’s interesting (and important) that SoFoBoMo is an event where the scale of the challenge is largely determined by the participants; it allows everyone who participates to decide for themselves exactly how and how much they want to challenge themselves. I had thought that the usual suspects have/are participating for the third year might feel things going stale but it’s been interesting to see how easy it is to find fresh challenges to address.

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Posted in Uncategorized by Paul Butzi on July 11, 2010

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Posted in Uncategorized by Paul Butzi on July 10, 2010

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Posted in Uncategorized by Paul Butzi on July 9, 2010

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Posted in Uncategorized by Paul Butzi on July 7, 2010

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Recommended

Posted in Blogroll by Paul Butzi on June 16, 2010

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Three blogs I’d particularly like to recommend, because the photography on them has had me captivated for some time now.

Number one – Juha Haataja’s wonderful Lightscrape. This blog is the perfect answer to those folks who insist that great photography is about equipment. Working with a single digicam, Juha Haataja has been cranking out photographs that make me envious at an astonishing rate. Fabulous stuff.

Number two – Carl Weese’s Working Pictures. There’s an extraordinary directness to these photographs that I very much admire and wish I could get into my photographs.

Number three – Oren Grad’s Things Seen. Of the three, I’ve been avidly following Oren’s the longest. There’s some of that directness of vision in Oren’s photographs as well.

I often follow photoblogs for a short while (a few months, say) and then find that all the work blurs together and I lose interest. These three have not only held my interest for much longer than the usual time, but my interest has actually increased, and I when I see a new post pop up in my RSS reader for any of these, I’m always delighted at a chance to see the next photo.

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Posted in Uncategorized by Paul Butzi on June 16, 2010

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More Elizabethan

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul Butzi on June 14, 2010

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Last week I was down in Ashland again. My friend Bill and I got another chance to photograph in the outdoor Elizabethan theatre (aka the ‘Lizzie’), this time without protective tarps. It’s truly an amazing space, and I’m tremendously grateful we’ve been granted such great access.

More Adobe Nightmares

Posted in Adobe InDesign, photoshop by Paul Butzi on May 29, 2010

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Ok. So I’ve upgraded my main photo computer to Snow Leopard. Everything seemed pretty much a-ok until I went to run InDesign CS3. InDesign complained “Some files required for color management are missing. Please re-install the application to ensure proper functioning. Ok, not a problem, I thought. I broke out the InDesign CS3 DVD, and I popped it in the computer, and started the install. It went along for a while, slowly reinstalling InDesign. And then it ejected the InDesign CS3 disk, and asked me to pop in the Photoshop CS4 DVD.

Which I did. It proceeded with the install for a while, then it ejected the Photoshop DVD and asked me to put in the Indesign CS3 disk. I did that, and it proceeded, slowly, to install. And then it ejected the InDesign CS3 disk and asked me to put in the Photoshop CS4 disk. I did that, and it proceeded to slowly install, and then it ejected the Photoshop CS4 disk and asked for the InDesign CS3 disk. I gave it that, and it proceeded, slowly, to install. And then it ejected the InDesign CS3 disk and asked for the Photoshop CS4 disk. So I took out the InDesign disk, and put in the Photoshop disk. And it proceeded with the install for a while, then it ejected the Photoshop DVD and asked me to put in the Indesign CS3 disk. I did that, and it proceeded, slowly, to install. And then it ejected the InDesign CS3 disk and asked for the Photoshop CS4 disk. I put in the Photoshop disk. It proceeded with the install for a while, then it ejected the Photoshop DVD and asked me to put in the Indesign CS3 disk. I did that, and it proceeded, slowly, to install. And then it ejected the InDesign CS3 disk and me to put in the Photoshop CS4 disk. I obliged. It proceeded with the install for a while, then it ejected the Photoshop DVD and asked me to put in the Indesign CS3 disk. I did that, and it proceeded, slowly, to install. And then it ejected the InDesign CS3 disk and asked for the Photoshop CS4 disk. Again, I made the swap. It proceeded with the install for a while, then it ejected the Photoshop DVD and asked me to put in the Indesign CS3 disk. I did that, and it proceeded, slowly, to install. And then it ejected the InDesign CS3 disk and asked for the Photoshop CS4 disk. In a superhuman display of patience, I swapped disks. It proceeded with the install for a while, then it ejected the Photoshop DVD and asked me to put in the Indesign CS3 disk. I did that, and it proceeded, slowly, to install. And then it ejected the InDesign CS3 disk and asked for the Photoshop CS4 disk. And then I swapped the disks. It proceeded with the install for a while, then it ejected the Photoshop DVD and asked me to put in the Indesign CS3 disk. And then it finally finished the installation.

I had to insert one or the other DVD a total of 17 times. Mind you, there were only TWO disks.

This is not just stupid. It’s irritatingly stupid, but that’s not all. It’s appallingly stupid. It’s staggeringly stupid. It’s stunningly stupid, and after a career in software development, I have to say that it takes quite a lot to stun me anymore. It is, perhaps, the most stupid software install behavior I’ve seen in the past ten years. Stupid, Stupid, Stupid, Stupid.

As you can imagine, during this process, I was increasingly motivated to say rude things about Adobe, Adobe employees, Adobe Software, the genealogy of Adobe employees, and what, in a just world, would happen to the folks responsible. I described how long it would take to mop up the undifferentiated amino acide goo that resulted. I invented new bad words, and then used the new words along with my quite sufficient store of old bad words to say things that would, if words could affect material things, have scorched the paint off the walls and set off the smoke alarm. I invented 12 entirely new languages completely devoted to ways to say nasty, brutish, and vulgar things about Adobe, and then I used each of those new languages until I got tired of them.

The dog howled, then cowered in fear, then hid in the bathroom and repeatedly flushed the toilet to blot out the sound of my swearing. Outside, trees shattered, the ground opened in yawning chasms, and violent earthquakes threatened to provoke Mount Rainier into violent eruptions, all because of the rude vulgarity of my language. The skies overhead turned from robin’s egg blue, to a dark and somber grey, and then to a greasy dark green, and repeated long flashes of lightning shattered the unearthly dismal darkness. Over the shrieking maelstrom of wind, the poor innocent residents of Carnation could hear the churning of the world’s oceans. And all this because of the extremity of the language I used.

And then. And then I put the InDesign CS3 disk in its case, and the PhotoShop CS4 disk in its case, and I made sure that Photoshop still started up. It did. So I made sure Bridge started up, and it did.

And then I started InDesign CS3, and it told me that “Some files required for color management are missing. Please re-install the application to ensure proper functioning.”

It might take me a day or two to cool off enough to call that pathetic excuse for customer support offered by Adobe. Until then, I spend time searching for alternatives to every piece of Adobe software I use. I am sick to death of this. Their software, for all that is the market dominating stuff and is the ‘gold standard’, has pissed me off, and this time it may have pissed me off so much I am actually motivated to hunt down some alternative.

I hope the folks working at Adobe and owning Adobe stock get exactly what they deserve. And I hope they get it good and hard, and I hope they get it for the next fifty years, nonstop.

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