Recent Posts
7 months, 1 week ago 0

 

Tony Sweet

 

Nick Coury

 

Matt Kloskowski

 

Bill Pekala

 

 

Wow, what talent!

 

Blessings,

 

the pilgrim

7 months, 1 week ago 5

 

Brad Mikel

 

 

When I was assembling the Fuji book I asked some friends to share some of their work  and it amazes me just how many truly fantastic photographers there are out there today!  I thought I might just showcase some of the images I received and credit the wonderful shooters!  Enjoy!

 

Ricky Skaggs

 

 

R.C. Concepcion

 

 

Jim Begley

 

 

Zack Arias

 

 

John “Snake” Barrett

 

 

David Hobby

 

 

Miles Smith

 

 

Jim Haverstock

 

 

Bjorn Moerman

 

 

Scott Kelby

 

 

Jack Graham

 

 

Casey Malone

 

 

Chris Klapheke

 

 

 

Mike Roberts

 

 

….and that’s just a few, I have many more great photography buddies,  and will share them later, but the bottom line is, I am blessed to get to work with,  and call friends, some truly fantastic photographers!!!  Thanks guys I’ve learned from all of you!!!

 

Blessings,

 

the pilgrim

7 months, 2 weeks ago 10

 

 

My wife lectured me again this morning about my reference to my “last remaining days”!  I am not dying, well that is not completely true, we are all dying, or at least headed toward the end of this earthly life.  If you are 69, which I will be in a few weeks, you are a lot closer than if you are 35, or at least according to the actuarial tables!  However, no one knows when they will leave this earth, so we should all be prepared.  I’m prepared, so I’m not talking about that,  I’m talking about making the most of the time you are here!

 

Sherelene and I did the daily Intouch Devotional together early this morning, we do every morning.  In a moment I will share it with you, but first I need to say something about this getting the most out of life thing….  Actually it’s not “getting” the most out of life, it’s “giving” the most to your life!  I was thinking this morning about one of the most wonderful men I ever knew, a man named Charlie Harris.  Charlie went on to be with the Lord a number of years ago, but I still think of him often.  Charlie wasn’t famous, wasn’t particularly well known, he wasn’t a gifted athlete, or an actor, or “worldly” wealthy.  He was wealthy in the most important way a man can be, he was loved, and loved by everyone that knew him! When Charlie died the out pouring in my home town was amazing, few famous people ever have had such an outpouring of sadness and grief.  You see Charlie poured himself into life, into others.  He was a kind, honest, sincere, man of real character and integrity.  Men and women like that make a real impact on their families, communities, and the body of Christ.  If you knew Charlie you felt he was one of your best friends, and you felt he considered you the same.  I’m not sure I have known hardly anyone else in my life that so many people genuinely loved.  Why?  Because he loved them.

 

The following devotional is sagely advice about how to stay young, and how to live young regardless of your age.  I doubt the person that wrote this knew Charlie, but they captured his spirit all the same!

 

Psalm 103:1-5

 

A psalm of David.

1 Let all that I am praise the Lord;
    with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name.
2 Let all that I am praise the Lord;
    may I never forget the good things he does for me.
3 He forgives all my sins
    and heals all my diseases.
4 He redeems me from death
    and crowns me with love and tender mercies.
5 He fills my life with good things.
    My youth is renewed like the eagle’s!

 

 

We all want to live each day fully. To do that, we need to maintain a youthful attitude instead of letting ourselves grow old and useless to the kingdom. Here are some suggestions for staying young all our life.

 

 

First, we need to keep laughing. We are never more like children than when we are having fun with our friends. Yet in order to laugh, we at times must let go of emotional baggage. Some people have been hurt deeply, and their laughter is buried under old pains. But clutching past bitterness and feelings of rejection will age us quickly. Jesus Christ is willing to remove all that ugliness when we lay it down, which we do by forgiving ourselves and others—perhaps repeatedly. Every day is a fresh start and another chance for our indwelling God to help us smile and laugh.
Second, we should keep longing. That means we ought to keep chasing our dreams and working toward goals. When a person wakes up with something to accomplish or a friend to aid, he or she experiences more of the joy life has to offer. As soon as we settle for watching the world go by, we start to age.

 

 

Finally, and most importantly, we must keep leaning on the Lord. If we live with childlike trust, God will bless our life and use us to bring blessing upon others. He will give a sense of contentment so deep that no trial or spiritual attack can shake us.

 

 

As believers, we have the opportunity to take part in the Lord’s work every day of our life. If we give up before He wants us to stop, we cheat both God and ourselves.

 

 

Charlie didn’t cheat God, and I don’t intend to either!

 

Blessings,

 

the pilgrim

 

7 months, 2 weeks ago 6

 

 

We all need help, I sure do, I was preparing to do today’s blog entry and “accidentally” made yesterday’s go away, trashed it!@^!?!%^$!#@^%  Arrrgh!  I really hate when that happens, I have found no way toy retrieve it so, I’ll revisit those thought on my podcast when I get that up and running!  So today I want to address a bunch of different issues so let me start with a very common question for which I thankfully finally found the answer!!!!

 

QUESTION 1.  How do I get your eBooks (anyone’s eBooks) on an iPad or tablet?

 

Well I can’t help you other tablet user’s because I’m a  MAC guy and not very good at that, did I mention I trashed yesterday’s blog entry!!!!!  I have wanted to put my own and several other’s eBooks on my iPad and finally found the solution.    Thom Hogan had a great article on his website ByThom titled Downloadable PDF Instructions.  I follow the instructions for the MAC and now I have all my eBooks and a number of others I love on my iPad, and they look great!!!  Some of you have bought various eBooks and tried to download them directly on the iPad, and my experience is the files are just to large unless you have a very fast internet connection or super high speed wireless.  So if you are having issues check out Thom’s excellent article!  While we are on the subject of Thom, a lot of my readers and friends have asked me what I think of his reviews and articles.  I really enjoy Thom’s writing sand 90% of time I agree with his conclusions and reviews!  My grandmother once told me if two people, especially a married couple, that have all the exact same opinions, one of them is not necessary!  So while Thom and I are not married we do deal with many of the same subjects so it is not surprising that on rare occasion we would occasionally have a different take.  No harm no foul, one this is for sure Thom’s opinions always make me think! …..and that’s a good thing

 

 

QUESTION 2.  Got an email from a friend and they simply asked did you mean what you said in today’s blog? (the one I accidentally erased!!!!!)

 

Let me attempt to answer that questions and bare with me.  Let me share how most of the blog entries are written, especially the ones with deeper meaning and spiritual connotations.  First, I don’t write them.  They are inspired by the Holy Spirit.  If you are a regular reader, you already know and understand what I’m talking about, if you’re not, you’re either scratching your head wondering if I’ve lost it, or you are running out of the house as fast as you can to get away from your computer!  It’s simple, when you accept Christ, God sends the Holy Spirit into your life, your heart,  your being, to guide you, comfort you and help you, that’s why in the Bible He is called The Helper.  When I start to write often I get inspiration that comes from beyond myself, words of wisdom, of comfort, of knowledge well beyond my own.  Yesterday what I wrote, it flowed almost so fast I could not type fast enough.  I can’t just repeat it, it didn’t come directly from me, but I think I can summarize.

 

I was apologizing for feeling some what guilty about making profit from things I enjoy so much, writing, teaching, speaking to groups, sharing.  I don’t think profit is bad, I’m a capitalist.  I believe in hard work and giving people things they need or want and it is a good thing to profit from your efforts.  I don’t believe in greed, wanting more than is fair, but I enjoy the fruits of my labor.  If you run workshops and sell books you have to advertise, let people know what you are offering.  Thus you hawk your products, workshops, books etc.  The point I made yesterday was that while I like to make money, that is not what drives me.  What drive me is; Being with those I love, my wife, my family, my friends and brothers ans sisters in Christ.  Sharing, teaching and writing about subjects I love in hopes others will enjoy and learn from my experiences.  God has richly blessed me with a great life seeing and doing wonderful things, I just want to share it while I am still here and can!  Finally My Heavenly Father has forever changed my life,He has brought me peace and Joy, and purpose.  I want to encourage others to want to know Him and accept Him, the Man who completely changed my life forever!

I shared a fanciful story of having won the 100 million dollar lottery and what I would do with the money, the bottom line is the few things I would buy I don’t really need anyway, and my security and peace is not in pile of money, but in Him!  So anyone who thinks when I hawk a class or book that I just care about the money, doesn’t know me at all.

 

 

Question 3.  I heard a rumor that you were going to cut back on workshops in 2016 is that true, and is it health related?

 

It is true, but not health related.  This year, somehow,  I ended up in 18 workshops, and I never intended for that to happen.  I love teaching with Jim Begley and Snake Barret, and Jack Graham, Jim Haverstock, Bill Pekala, Fred Sisson, and Vinny Colucci and many others, but I will reduce the total number of workshops next year to a little over half this year’s total.  I certainly will still do some His Light events and some with Jack Graham.  However, i want to spend more time writing and doing some personal travel with Sherelene in 2015.  I want to drive the entire length of Route 66 sand blog about  it and maybe produce a book.  I want to spend some more time with family and just slow things down a little.  I love to teach but a workshop almost every other week is too many!  Jack does it all year long and I don’t know how he does it, but he is a great teacher and I’ve really enjoyed teaching with him!  I still have my KelbyOne and Photoshop stuff too so it adds up fast!  I’m not going to disappear, but several other things are in the works and I’ve got free up schedule time!  More info as things get clearer!

 

 

Question 4.   I know you’ve had the 50-140 f 2.8 WR OIS lens for awhile bow and have posted no images, what is your opinion, I’m thinking of buying one, but at that price want to be sure!

 

Buy it!!!!!  The weather has been terrible in Kentucky so I just haven’t been able to take it out and ring it out!  In spite of that I have thoroughly tested it and have to say it is among the five best lenses I’ve ever shot!  What are those five?  The Fuji 23mm f 1.4, the Fuji 56mm f 1.2, the Nikon 200mm Micro Nikkor and the Nikon 400mm f 3.5 IF-ED Nikkor + the new 50-140 f 2.8 from Fuji!  It may be the sharpest of all these lenses, it is beyond sharp!!!  The most amazing thing besides it’s sharpness, and build quality is how fantastic the OIS (Optical Image Stabilization) works.  In the image below I hand held the lens at 140mm , which is the equivalent of 210mm) at 1/27th of a second and then at 1/7th of a second, both full frame and at 100% hand held!!!!!!!

 

Full image 210mm  1/27th of a second

Full image 210mm  1/27th of a second 100% Crop

 

Full image 210mm  1/7th of a second

 

Full image 210mm  1/7th of a second 100% Crop

 

 

Yeah, me too!  It is flat out unbelievable!  Imagine what images will look like of a sturdy tripod!

 

Remember the new Close-Up Book is out and you get the free copy of the Building a System for Field Use!

 

 

 

Thanks to Dan Roeder, he has recovered yesterdays lost text!!!!!!!

 

Hey folks, the Close-Up Book is out, be sure to go to the eBook Store, to the right, and check it out!  Now we are down to the last two days of 10% savings on workshops!  Get your deposit in today or tomorrow and same enough for one nights lodging or several days of meals!  Things are filling up fast so if you want to join us in 2015 please look at the schedule today!

 

 

Here are the workshops that are almost full!!!!


Great Smokies in Spring  Only ONE Spot left!


Memory Lane in Rogersville, TN    Only a few spots left


The Palouse  (June) with Jack Graham  Almost full


Nashville (End of July)  with Ricky Skaggs extended to 5.5 days  Filling Fast


The First ever Fuji X System Workshop at Mt. Rainier (August) with Jack and I  Almost sold out now!!!


Nova Scotia (October)  Only two spots left!


Southwest Tour (Early November) with Vinny Colucci and I only a couple of spots left!


Today’s featured Workshop is Old Car City!  This is a bargain at $799.  take off 10% and it’s just $719.  REGISTER before Midnight tomorrow and I will throw in the full set of my 12 eBooks!!!!!  That’s a $65. value in books!  Add to that, a future discount on any workshop (Domestic) with His Light Workshops of 10%.  So if you love old Cars and Trucks this is a great opportunity!

 

Today’s double barrel deal at the eBook Store  Both The Close-Up Book and Building a System for Field Use for $9.95!

 

O.K.  Sales pitches are over for now!   I feel guilty selling books and doing workshops and making a profit!   If I had won the lottery and had no financial needs, I would be doing this all for free, I really would.  Just fantasize with me for a minute!!!  Let’s pretend that yesterday I won the Mega Millions Jackpot or whatever they call it now!  Since we are pretending let’s say 100 million after taxes.  So seriously what would I do!!??  Here is what I think I would do.  Pay of my Churches mortgage, put enough money aside to assure my grandchildren a college education, or start a business in life. I might replace my 2007 Toyota F J Cruiser that has 243,000 miles on it, but I might not, it suits me.  I would buy a nice beach home on a beautiful beach somewhere not to hard to get to, Sherelene loves the ocean and the beach.  I would get a NET Jet card so I could fly wherever I wanted to go and never darken the door of commercial airport terminal again. I would also run a half dozen incredible trips a year to great destinations like Patagonia, and and simply invite 8 or 10 people to go along, no cost, all expenses covered, hey, I’m a multimillionaire!!!!!

 

Personal purchases?  I would buy another powered parachute and another Trike (kind of ultra-light) I really miss flying.  That’s about it.  No D810, no long fast glass, no more Fuji bodies (not until something cool comes out)  Don’t need anymore STUFF!    So the question is would winning that 100o million really materially change my life?  Well let’s see, the church will pay off it’s own mortgage and Sherelene and I contributing what we can will help that happen over time anyway, If  I paid for it all I would rob that privilege from the other members and honestly that wouldn’t be such a good thing.  Sherelene and I get to a beach at least once a year and I am not sure I would like to try and maintain another home another place,  it’s enough keeping our current home up!  I drive everywhere I can, I am a frustrated “wish I was truck driver kind of guy anyway”, so I guess and I can deal with commercial air a little longer!  I’m probably getting a little to old to keep flying anyway, but I do miss that!!!  ……..and as I said I really don’t need or want more stuff!  I heard a wise man once say, at some point in life you don’t own stuff, the stuff owns you!   Storage, maintenance and too much attachment!

 

So I guess I’m fine with that I didn’t win the lottery, but then why am I working so hard in retirement if it’s really not about the money?  Glad you asked!

 

Let me share what drives me!

 

Being with the people I love.  My wife and best friend Sherelene, my family, my friends, photo buddies and brothers, and sisters in Christ.

 

Teaching and writing and sharing.  I love to write blogs, books, teach face to face!  It is to me, the highest form of giving back.  I have been the recipient of so much joy and fun, and I want to make sure I pass it on to others.  I can’t leave here until I’ve done everything in my power to make other people’s lives better.

 

Truly making a difference in people’s lives by leading them to Jesus!  I can’t talk anyone into wanting to meet my Savior, or argue or debate them into it,  the only thing I can do is what HE did.  Love them with His Unconditional Love.  A love that says I don’t care what you can do for me, I don’t even expect you to treat me a certain way, I just want to have fellowship with you, and I’m willing to die for you to redeem you!!!!!    “I ” can’t do that, but through his power, grace and strength I can do as much as He allows!

 

When eBook sales spike, (since the new eBook came out this morning),  3 hours ago, nineteen books have sold, sorry about that, five more “bings” now it’s 24!  I don’t see dollar signs, I see people that care what I have to share, that means so much more than dollars, Hey I’ll take the dollars, but it is secondary to the joy of sharing and having people benefit and enjoy my efforts!

 

When I teach as workshop and someone says it was one of the best experiences of their life, you can’t imagine how much that thrills me!  Often when I drive or fly home from a workshop a replay those expression of joy and praise God all the way home!

 

But, most of all, when I share my love of Christ with someone and it leads to them changing their life forever, nothing that has ever fallen in my lap equals the feeling of knowing  my life, Through Christ, has made a difference for someone else’s!

 

So yes we are trying to make retirement money, hey guys Fuji hasn’t stopped coming out with new bodies and new lenses, but please trust me, really please trust me, that part comes in way back in third or fourth place!

 

Be blessed today,

 

the pilgrim