Saturday, May 28, 2011

A Holga master and a Tenkara master go fishing...

I recently had the pleasure of meeting, fishing with and getting a little instruction from Daniel Galhardo, the founder of Tenkara USA.  If you've never heard of Tenkara, it's a form of fly fishing that originated in Japan a few centuries ago, it's very simple, in that all you use is a fly rod and line.  In many ways I think it has some similarities with toy camera photography in that it is primarily about the challenge of using a simple tool to obtain amazing results.

Dan was in the Salt Lake area doing an informal workshop and demo of tenkara fishing and his Tenkara rods, through a local fly fishing shop, Western Rivers Fly Fishing.  I have had fished once with one of these simple fly rods once before, but wanted to know more, so I went and took my Holgas along.   As see it, there is a connection between what I do with my photography and tenkara fishing.  The rods that Dan produce I think are really comparable to Holgas, they are made of a composite material and telescoping, which puts them somewhere in between a bamboo stick and a more contemporary fly rod, comparable to a Holga where you could put them somewhere in between a pinhole camera and your average digital SLR camera.

The technique you use while fishing with a tenkara rod is slightly different than what you do when fishing with a more contemporary fly rod, in that it's all in the wrist, and how you grip the rod is a little different too.

The sign of a great master, is that the master is able to teach the subject to any and all skill levels, and while the fly fishing ability of the group I was with was above average, Dan was certainly generous with his time and knowledge and got around to all of making sure that we all had a good technique.

 I really like the idea of tenkara fishing because it is so simple and minimalistic, while most of in the class carried our big backpacks with all of various gear, Dan didn't carry all that much, in his small hip bag. 

I enjoyed the day I had with Dan and the others, so much so I'd like to get a tenkara rod, perhaps if you took at look at my Etsy Shop, so that I might be able to buy one sooner rather than later.
Thanks for reading!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Living with if for a while...

I don't know what your editing process is, but when I look at a newly processed roll of film, I go with my gut, I look at the roll and I can quickly pick out the negatives I am going to print. There are usually others though that stick in my head after that initial look that I will have to live with for a while before I do anything with it.
This photograph was one of those negatives, if you look at the previous post (Salmo Trutta), that was the  negative I picked upon my initial look, and was the one I picked when I looked at the roll again, but this one, of the same trout has stuck in my head since then.
I am not sure which photograph I like more, or which is the better of the two; judging by the comments I have  received on Flickr on both photographs there is no clear choice.
So what do you think? Was my original choice the better one or was the one that I have been living with all these months the better photograph? Or shall I go out and photograph more fish, this was the first trout I have actually photographed after all. 
Please be specific, and give an honest critique of both photographs.
Thanks as always for reading, I look forward to hearing your thought about the photographs.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Memories of My Mom...

I thought I'd do something a little different, and post something  about my mom.
My mom died recently after a hard fought battle with cancer that lasted 16 years. During her more than 61 years on this world she did a lot of great things and I thought I'd touch on a few of them.  My mom was probably the most patriotic person I know, she loved our country and loved serving it too, when she was 31 years old she decided to join the military, the Air National Guard more specifically.  I was 10 at the time she went to air force basic training, and I was very proud of her when she graduated, it made being away from her all that time well worth it. Even though I was in the Air Guard for 11 years I always enjoyed having lunch with her and my dad on "drill weekend", we would often call each other "sergeant mom" or "sergeant son". She retired form the guard a few years ago after serving for 20 years.

My mom also played the violin, something she had done for a good part of her life, growing up she played in both the junior youth symphony and the youth symphony of the local school district. Later in life, before she had been diagnosed with cancer she was an original member of a local community symphony where she played for many years until the cancer prevented her from playing any longer.  I had always wanted to photograph her playing the violin, and I did so in what I recall was one of her last seasons with the the community symphony. 
The summer of 2007 my mom's cancer started to win the battle, a battle that she had faced head on with unwavering determination and a smile of optimism.  During that summer "The Story Corps Project" visited our area, so I took her there to record her story.
 I interviewed my mom for about an hour as I recall, and while most her life was pretty well known to me, I did learn a few new things about my mom too.
These are just a few of the memories I have of my mom, thanks for taking the time to read them and where ever you are mom thanks for being you... I LOVE YOU!