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3 years, 9 months ago 2

Again, this morning, I’m pulling from the wonderful In Touch Daily Devotional from Charles Stanley.  Some years back when I was in my forties, I read a book that was very impact full entitled “Half Time’.  It was aimed at men in their mid life, and it was spiritual teaching about how to change our perspective and life style in the last half of our lives.  It was a great guidance for me to consider what changes i needed to make.  This morning the title hit me at the next stage of my life, approaching the end.  No I’m not dying, well actually we are all dying, but I’m a lot closer to that part of life than the middle age part!


2 Timothy 4:6-8

New Living Translation (NLT)

As for me, my life has already been poured out as an offering to God. The time of my death is near. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful. And now the prize awaits me—the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me on the day of his return. And the prize is not just for me but for all who eagerly look forward to his appearing.


Why fight the fight?  Jesus said, John 15:13   There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 

How can we give ourselves for our friends, and family?  Of course those that die in service to their country, policemen, firemen, and members of the military certainly do that, but how can you remain alive and still fulfill that command?


When we reach out to others in words and deeds, in an attempt to lead them to Him, we are serving others int he most impact full way possible.  So to live well, we need to live for Him, to serve others in His name, and love others with His love.  What caused people to follow Jesus, giving up all they knew and had owned?  He loved them with a love so deep it went beyond anything they had ever experienced, we can love with that same love, His love!


God doesn’t require our lives to be perfect in order to finish strong. We can live life fully and be ready to meet our Maker by surrendering, walking victoriously with Christ, and serving others. If Jesus called you home today, would you–like Paul–be confident that you lived well until the end?


In His love,


the pilgrim


3 years, 9 months ago 17

We have been beating one subject to death, which camera and why, but in the shower this morning I came up with a new approach to that question!  After exhaustive tests, I’ve  come to the conclusion that just about any of the top cameras I’ve tested and used can give spectacular results if used properly!!  So how to make a decision about which camera isa best for you?  What features does a camera have to have for  me to be comfortable working with it day after day?   (You have to make your own list, but hopefully this will help you to start thinking about it)1  Why I thought of this in the shower is beyond me, but here are some of my most desired and needed features;


1. Being able to check sharpness by magnifying the image with the multi-selector center button on the camera.  This is a custom function available on the D700, D800, D3s, and D4.  It is not available on the D600, and D7000.  I use t his feature all the time to check focus and sharpness and I find I feel crippled without it!  Is it  deal breaker?   No, but close, I really miss it on the bodies  that don’t offer it!!!!!


2.  Ability to cycle through menus and images with command dials.  This is another custom function that is available on all the cameras above.  Any feature that helps you work faster and more smoothly will really make the shooting process more enjoyable, this is a great feature!  All these cameras have it.


3. Bracketing of .3, .7, 1, 3, 5,7 9 shots by at least 1 f stop, preferably more.  For very serious HDR work you simply need this ability, now having said that, I do wonderful HDRs with my D7000 which only offers a 1 stop difference over 3 shots, but it’s not ideal.  The D4, D3s, D800 and D700 all offer this minimum, the D4 much more.  The D600 offers up to a 3 stop difference (.3, .7, 1, 2, 3 stops) in 3 shots, and the D7000 is limited to a maximum of 1 stop spread over three shots.


4.  A dedicated, easy to find, Bracketing button for changing those settings.  It’s best on the top left control area of the D4, D3s, and D800, the button is less easy to find on the D600 and D7000.  Not a deal breaker, but does not make me smile as much as a big dedicated BKT button!


5.  Cropped area grayed out in crop modes.  Some cameras gray out the area not imaging in crop modes, the D4, D3s, D800 and D600 have this feature, the D700 and D7000 do not.  It makes composing easier than looking for a thin black line in the frame, and in movement situations you can see where the subject is right outside the frame!


6.  The softest most predictable release teamed up with the quietest shutter and mirror.  The winner is D7000, followed very closely by the D600, then in third place D800, tied for fourth place D4/D3s, dead last place D700 (which today compared to the newest cameras, sounds like a screen door slamming!!!!


7.  The more mega pixels, the better!!!   Firsts place, D800, Second place, D600, Third place D7000, (it’s 16 megapixels has a relative pixel density of 24), Fourth, D4, tied for 5th D700 and D3s, though the D3s is a better 12 megapixels in terms of quality.  Three reasons why!  (1) Even though I shoot for the final images, being able to crop and maintain lots of resolution is very valuable!  (2) You can never have too much detail and gradation of tones, (3) When noise appears at very high ISOs the ability to smooth it with post processing and give up a little sharpness from a file that has twice the sharpness of anything else on the market is golden!


8.  Mirror Lockup.  All have it!


9.  Ability to use a convient to use wireless remote.  The D7000 and D600 use the ML-L3 remote which I love! The D4/D3s, D700 and D800 all take the ten pin remotes or can use the Nikon Modulite infrared remote or some of the third party radio remotes, they all work but are bulky and involve cords.  I sure wish the D800 used the ML-L3 remote!!!!!


10.  Feeling of substance without being too heavy, (admittedly this is purely subjective, but I will share my thoughts).  For me the D700 and D800 have the near perfect feeling of rugged build, enough weight to steady the camera in hand holding, and a medium size form factor that just works for me.   The D4 and D3s are just to heavy for me to carry all day over my shoulder.  The D7000 is the lightest, but still feels well made and rugged, and is perfect when I simply want to carry the lightest camera in my DSLR inventory (like travel photography).


11.  Depth-of-field preview button.  All  have it.


12.  Great Live View features.  D4, D800, and D600 lead this parade, the D4 and D800 are almost the same, and the best.


So using my own criteria how do the cameras score for me?

First place:  D800

Second Place:  D600

Third Place:  D7000

Tied in fourth place:  D4/D3s  (remember I’m not a sports shooter anymore!!!)

Last place:  D700  (Still a great camera!!)


What does this mean?  Well, pending any new cameras coming any time soon, to further muddy the waters, For me it’s a D800, a D600, and D7000.  This would fulfill my belief that you need an FX and DX body, and keeping in mind, you could by all three new, in the box, for about the same money as a single D4.




Luke 12:15-21

New Living Translation (NLT)

15 Then he said, “Beware! Guard against every kind of greed. Life is not measured by how much you own.”

16 Then he told them a story: “A rich man had a fertile farm that produced fine crops. 17 He said to himself, ‘What should I do? I don’t have room for all my crops.’ 18 Then he said, ‘I know! I’ll tear down my barns and build bigger ones. Then I’ll have room enough to store all my wheat and other goods. 19 And I’ll sit back and say to myself, “My friend, you have enough stored away for years to come. Now take it easy! Eat, drink, and be merry!”’

20 “But God said to him, ‘You fool! You will die this very night. Then who will get everything you worked for?’

21 “Yes, a person is a fool to store up earthly wealth but not have a rich relationship with God.”


I love camera gear, lenses, and all the accessories, but we must be careful not to make them our gods.  They are tools and careful thought should go into spending our resources, but at some point, enough is enough!


In Him,


the  pilgrim


Photo Note:  Even if it’s not the camera for me, the image at the top was made with the D4 and it proves that any camera listed is capable of wonderful imaging!


Yesterday’s photo quiz!!  Top shot D800, 2nd down,  D600, last two, point and shoot camera!!


3 years, 9 months ago 0

I’m very excited to be taking a group back to Old Car City in March of 2013,  and that workshop is almost filled already!  On my way to Atlanta last Friday I stopped to run a little test with  the new D600, compared to the D800, and I threw in a point an shoot just for grins.  I did some HDR and strait stuff too, Why don’t you see if you can figure out which is which!  I’ll give the answers tomorro


Well, good luck, I discovered one thing for sure, they all can make nice images!!


the pilgrim

3 years, 9 months ago 3

I was talking with a friend and his wife a little while back and they were sharing that they wanted to buy a bigger house for their growing family.  They had found just the house but unexpectedly they owners took it off the market.  I asked my friend what he thought it would take to get the house.  He said more  money, “anything is for sale at the right price!”  Is that really true?  Maybe in the world anything can be bought.  That may be exactly why Jesus said “be not of  this world.”  If everything truly does have a price, what is yours?


Would you sell out to the world for fame and fortune, power, and prestige?   I love a song by contemporary Christian artist, Michael Combs, titled “Not For Sale.”    Read the lyrics and ask yourself is there is anything you are selling out to?


What happened to that Preacher, Who used to Preach so strong.
What happened to that singer,Who used to sing our song.
The Preacher’s out selling Amway, That singer’s now singing country.
They sold out what is right for what is wrong.

What happened to the church, That used to be on fire.
What happened to the voices, That sang in the heavenly choir.
Oh, The Church has now grown dead and cold,
The choir is slient, Cause nobody goes.
They sold out to the world and their own desiers (Listen To Me)






This heart belongs to Jesus, Cause he saved my soul from Hell.
This heart belongs to Jesus, This heart is not for sale.
Not for sale, Not for sale, No way no sir.
Well a man from California, Called a few months ago.
He said boy with your talent , We can make a lot of dough.
I said thanks for the offer it all sounds swell.
But I belong to Jesus, And I’m just not for sale.
Not for sale, I’m not for sale, No way no sir.


Well, If you’re living for Jesus,Friend, They’ll come a day.
That old Devil’s gonna try to get you some way.
He’ll try you, And tempt you, with his lies straight from hell.
Just say I belong to Jesus, And Devil I’m not for sale
Not for sale, Not for sale, No way no sir.
I belong to the Lamb of God,
He purchased me with his precious Blood,
I don’t need popularity, I’d rather have what he gave to me.
I belong to the King of Kings,
He’s my hope, He’s my joy, He’s my everything.
I belong to the Lord God Almighty,
I belong to the one who gave his life for me.
I belong to the Lamb Of God,
He purchased me with his precious Blood,
I don’t need popularity, I’d rather have what he gave to me.
Some sold conviction’s for compromise,
Some have sold the truth for a pack of lies.
Some have sold Testimonies for fortune and fame.
I just want to Glorify and Magnify his name


This heart belongs to Jesus, He saved my soul from Hell.
This heart belongs to Jesus, Oh this heart is not for sale.
Not for sale, Not for sale, No way no sir.
Not for sale, I’m Not for sale,
I’m not for sale, No way no sir, I’m Not for sale,
I’m Not for sale,


Everyone of us has to decide what out price is, mine was paid by Jesus, so, I’m no longer on the market…..


the pilgrim


*Photo Note: Shot with a compact point and shoot camera with a small LED light panel as the light source.


** the song, Not For Sale by Michael Combs is available on iTunes


Got to having fun, and did a series of B&W images the same way.  Enjoy;





Confession time, I was staying in a Courtyard and they had a series of images like these  on the wall near the elevator, I just couldn’t wait to drag out my old typewriter and try to do some stuff. It’s flattery and was fun to do!