Category : Uncategorized

8 years, 3 months ago 0

I am leaving this morning for a long weekend in Nashville. I’m meeting with a customer today in Knoxville, and then another later today in Nashville. Tomorrow morning I have another meeting with a valued customer and friend and then will be setting up at Durys for a short four hour mini seminar I’m doing there all Saturday morning. Friday night I’m going to have the pleasure of dinner with one of my best friends, Don Nelson and his family in Nashville. Some of you, I’m sure, because I hear it all the time, are thinking wow what and exciting life. I have to admit that working for Nikon as a tech rep has it’s great moments. Truthfully everything about this trip will be pleasant. All these customers and friends will be great to spend time with. I’ll stay in a nice hotel, and have good meals. Only one problem, it’s not home. I try not to sound to much like Dorothy
in the Wizard of Oz, but, “There’s no place like home……”

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. If someone seldom travels it looks exciting, if someone travels all the time, it looks like so many more days away from home. After a while you get use to this kind of life, but that doesn’t mean your heart is not back home. The trick is your head and your performance has to be where ever you’ve been sent.

I’m so very, very thankful to have my job, any job, I know there are those that are not so fortunate.
I’m not whining or crying, I just hate those first few hours when you have to break the bonds of home, and leave.

If I feel pain from the separation from home, imagine how excruciating Jesus’ pain must have been when He willingly was separated from His Father to die for our sins. I can’t even begin to imagine what that separation must have been like. I could never do enough to show my thankfulness for His act of supreme sacrifice.

This week when I went to Phil Fox’s funeral I was reminded, once again, what great gifts God has given us, and how important it is to show our thankfulness by honoring them, and the God who bestowed them on us.

a thankful man,

the pilgrim

*Photo Note: D7000 with 24-120.

8 years, 3 months ago 0

Last year I wrote a rave review of our new P7000. I took it out west and shot a lot of images that even I couldn’t believer came out of a point and shoot type camera. It and the P300 have been constant companions ever since. I had come to prefer the P300 because it was a faster in operation. Now Nikon has announced the P7100 and it’s claimed to be much faster and more responsive. I say claimed only because I have not seen one yet, but I’m sure it is. It also has the only thing glaringly absent from it’s older brother, an articulated LCD screen.

I can’t wait to get one and wring it out for you and I.
I will post about it as soon as I have anything to show.

Until then the first preview is
available at dpreview.

For now we can dream of a new tool that is even
better than the first effort, which as you recall
was not bad at all……


the pilgrim

8 years, 3 months ago 0

Yesterday I said goodbye to a friend. Well, I actually said, I’ll see you again soon. Phil Fox was a wonderful man. I loved him and, I still love him, but then, Phil was so easy to love. Phil was a great family man, and he had a great family. His wife Joyce, his sons, Phil Jr., Dale, and Marcus are all great people. I suspect that they got that way because of Phil’s and Joyce’s sterling example.

I first met Phil when I went to work for Doug Blair at Richland Coal. Everyone loved Phil, and I never heard a single person say a negative thing about him. Some time ago I got an email about the dash between your year of birth and the year you leave this earth. The dash is what you did with your life. More importantly, who you blessed with your life. Phil’s life between 1940 and 2011 made a lot of lives better. He had countless friends, raised a great family, was a wonderful husband to Joyce.

I’m honored that Phil called me a friend. If my “dash” is anything like as good as Phil’s then I will have lived a good life. When we loose a friend that knows our Lord, we don’t say goodbye, you say “see you later, my friend”…..

I miss you and love you Phil, I’m looking forward to catching up one of these days….

the pilgrim

The Hat?

Thought you would never ask…..

Phil wanted something to express his appreciation to people that been praying for him during his battle with melanoma. The hat idea seemed ideal since he was “known” for the hats he wore. The quote was given to him in a dream he had about a dear friend that had died from cancer a few years ago. In the dream, his friend appeared and told him, remember these words; “Lord of Lords, King of Kings, Jesus is His name.”

Three weeks later, Phil was diagnosed with melanoma cancer that eventually took his life. He had these hats made and wore HIS HAT, conversations started with curious strangers and Phil was able to share his faith with them. He would say, “It’s not my hat, It’s not your hat, It’s Jesus hat! and one size fits all….” Way to go Phil, and the way to live, as well………

the pilgrim

*Photo Note: D7000, 24-120 AFS VR

8 years, 3 months ago 0

This past weekend I was again honored to be among the presenters at Grandfather Mountain’s Camera Clinic. The event is sold out every year with over 140 people packed into the beautiful theatre in the round auditorium. Don Nelson was honored for his decades of service to the photo community of the region, running the two photo events annually for many, many years. A few years ago Don fought and won a courageous battle with Lymphoma. The treatments knocked him down hard, but he has slowly been recovering, but the after effects make life more challenging
and he was stepping down from those duties this year. I was glad to get to be there for this years
event and share this last time on the mountain with him in charge.

Of course many great
old stories were retold,
including, (to the right),
the year Don had
100 t-shirts and hats
made that said, “I
Stayed Awake During
a Bill Fortney Slide
Show!” We all had a
good laugh and shed a
few tears remembering
all the great times, “On
the Mountain.”

Don has been one of
my best friends for many
years and he has done
more than almost any-
one to further my
career as a photo-
grapher. I treasure
these great memories
of being with him, his
sons Scott and Jeff,
and our dear friend
Tom Payne so many,
many times on Hugh
Morton’s mountain.
Hugh went to be with
the Lord several years
ago and we missing
him very much.

Above, Don accepts his thanks graciously, as always.

I did two programs, one Saturday and, one Sunday morning. We had a great time and all went well. After one of the programs a lot of kind people complimented me on the teaching programs.
I thanked them for their kind remarks, and tried to deflect the honor to Him. This morning the scripture for the In Touch devotional wrapped it up nicely.

Psalm 139
 1 O Lord, you have examined my heart
      and know everything about me.
 2 You know when I sit down or stand up.
      You know my thoughts even when I’m far away.
 3 You see me when I travel
      and when I rest at home.
      You know everything I do.
 4 You know what I am going to say
      even before I say it, Lord.
 5 You go before me and follow me.
      You place your hand of blessing on my head.
 6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
      too great for me to understand!
 7 I can never escape from your Spirit!
      I can never get away from your presence!
 8 If I go up to heaven, you are there;
      if I go down to the grave, you are there.
 9 If I ride the wings of the morning, *( I thought of this many times flying my
      if I dwell by the farthest oceans,
 10 even there your hand will guide me,
      and your strength will support me.

God is so good to let us have these wonderful times, with dear friends, enjoying photography
and great places like Grandfather in a spirit of praise to HIm.

Be blessed this week,

the pilgrim

*Photo Note: All images courtesy of Edger Payne.