Recent Posts
3 years, 1 month ago 1
Posted in: Uncategorized

Just wanted you guys to know Sherelene and I got to Marco Island safely, it was 27 degrees when we boarded the plane in Louuisville this morning it’s 85 here, I like this better!!  Miss my buddies at Shaker, but I know they and Dave are burning it up “photographically!”   I will try to keep you posted this week!




the pilgrim


Photo Note:  Fuji X-Pro 1, 18-55, view from our room!!!

3 years, 1 month ago 6

So sorry, I’ve been getting the Shaker Village Workshop with Dave Black up and running and have not had internet for the past three days!!!!  Guess the Shakers were not into the internet, actually the last Shakers to occupy the village left 90+ years ago and I’m pretty sure computers were not a part of their lives!!!!  So our group is having a blast and Dave is doing wonderful light painting, ;promise to show some later this weekend!  I’m off to Marco Island with Sherelene for some much needed rest, and I will post occasionally from there, but I am going to be catching up on some zzzzs!


Teh shot above is from the wonderful glass blowing art of Stephen Powell, also below, we had a chance to visit his gallery and witness his incredible glass blowing techniques!


We did a little shooting around the village, but I was busy helping others so I only have a few images to share for now!



Please pray for our group in Shaker that the Holy Spirit will be present as they fellowship and learn.




the pilgrim


Photo Note:  All Fui X100s

3 years, 1 month ago 17

For the last 43 years, as a photographer, I have been obsessed with lenses!!  There, I said it, admitted it, and owned up to it!!!!  Nothing in photography has consumed as much of my time as trying to determine if the lenses I had, or the ones I wanted to buy, were sharp enough, distortion free enough, or color correct enough to allow me to make the images I hoped to make.  Last night I said good night to Sherelene and let her go on to bed while I sat on the couch and read about, you guessed it, lenses!!!!!


I discovered something very important, and it won’t affect my photography much one way or the other, I’m obsessing about the wrong things!  I came smack up against the realization that I don’t obsess as much about my relationship with God as my lenses……  Bummer, what an awful thing to come face to face with.  I do love my Lord, and I read the Bible, and pray, and call on Him every day. I try to serve Him, and adhere to what I believe He is revealing to me.  But I get obsessed with a small metal tube filled with glass!!??


It is a bad habit, one that the enemy helps us cultivate, to find anything that will take us away from considering what is most important in life, our relationship with Him!  I know how much He has given to me, how fortunate I am to be forgiven, to have a wonderful family, great friends, and a profession I really enjoy, but I need to not let anything supplant my worship and attention to my time with Him!!!!!


I am committing to seek release from such obsessions!




the pilgrim



3 years, 1 month ago 7


It’s actually really simple, there are a lot of choices, and you can’t buy it all, so with 43 years of photographic experience, I will share my thoughts!  Keep in mind that very few manufacturers give me products, when they have, I will be up front about it.  I will not review any product that I have not first purchased with my own hard earned money!  What I’m trying to say is you can rest assured that I’m being as honest and open as possible.  It is always your decision to buy and use what you believe is best for you!  I will welcome and post your comments!  As is always the goal here, to help, not harm !


This Review:  The Guru Gear Bataflae 18L  Back Pack


As you know if you read this blog, that I’m a proud member of the “Bag of the Month Club”, I never met a bag I didn’t like and very few I didn’t’ buy!!!  Having said that, I do have a few that have become my favorites and this Guru Gear 18L is certainly one of them.  It is extremely well made with sensible, but excellent materials.  Equally important it is very well designed and a pleasure to use.  It keeps my gear well protected and very accessible!

I’ve seen these bags for a while but was honestly held back by their higher price, until my good friend Jack Graham expressed his respect for the company!  Though they are often 25% to 35% higher in price than direct competitors! I think they are worth the premium, and I appreciate the solid advice from Jack!


A quick note on my philosophy of how to use various bags.  Everyone is different, some photographers are relatively young, athletic folks that a carry a great deal of weight if they need to!  Some of us simply cannot comfortably do so!  I see this backpack and similar products as “Transport” bags.  By that I mean these bags are what I use to get to the shooting location, at which point I use a different way to carry the gear I remove and use in-the-field!  If you were younger and more energetic, you might well be able to carry this bag everywhere,  If I am flying, I use one of the Think Tank’s excellent rolling airport cases, if working out of my own vehicle, I love this moderate size bags and this is a really good one.


What I Like:


Top quality construction. Made with the best materials, attractive, and highly functional.


Very well designed with a wealth of zippered compartments, and an ample, well laid out, interior layout!  Compartment sizes, are perfect for the gear I carry!  Lens and body pockets have ample too for the use of protective wraps.


Perfect size ( for me), holds everything I need with a couple of extra spaces that will be filled in the near future!!  ( but not too many, it’s expensive to fill those compartments!)


Carry on legal, though I wouldn’t personally carry it through airports on my back, those days are over!


Will hold an iPad or 13″ laptop or net book, which is very handy


Excellent backpack strap system, though once again, trips to the SUV will likely be my longest hikes with it on my back! For stronger shooters it’s an easy carry!



What I didn’t like:


Slightly pricey, but, for me, worth the extra money.


Zippers are of the water sealing variety and the pull is a little tougher, but the excellently designed zipper pulls make up for the slight extra effort.  This is one plus of Think Tank bags, super smooth zippers.


The stretchy water bottle pockets on both lower sides, while appreciated, seem like a cheap addition on such a wonderfully designed bag!  The tripod straps however are first class,  If you carry a small tripod that way!  I don’t.



The Bottom Line:  If your looking for a great bag for a smaller DX type DSLR, or even better, a mirror-less system, I can highly recommend this bag, it earns my TOP RATING an F 32,


My Rating Scale:


F 32.    State of the art product, exceptional value, you won’t be sorry!


F 16.    Excellent product,  capable of professional results, a good value, a good buy!


F  8.     Good product, good results, reasonable value.


F. 4.      Only fair product, better alternatives exist.  Think twice before this purchase!


F. 2.      Poor product, expect poor results, not a good value, avoid this product.



* Also check out The Think Tank Airport Essential Back Pack, it is very similar but with slightly less exterior pocket storage on the outside front, but a about a hundred dollars less!

Also extremely well made!  I have not rated it yet, but expect it to be Highly Rated, almost all Think Tank products are!


** A word about my carry systems once on site.   I like the diminutive Think Tank Retrospective 5.  Mine’s the Pinestone color! Love that color!! It’s perfect for a body and a few lenses and accessories.  When I need to carry more, I love Think Tanks belt system with the appropriate pouches for the gear I need to carry!



O. K.  Review number 1 is in the bag, sorry about that, hope it was helpful!





the pilgrim


Photo Note:  Images with Nikon D700 & 24-120 AF-S VR zoom