Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Coulrophobia (Fear of Clowns)
Anah Temple Shrine Clowns
People at Work®: The Circus!

Well we might as well address it here....you know you want to.

Studies have shown that as many as 1 in 7 people are at least mildly averse to clowns.

What does one SAY to a clown? It can be unsettling.

In fact, it was my own mild clown aversion which led to this entire circus series. Several years ago I drove past this auditorium and a bunch of clowns were just sort of hanging out outside, checking watches, standing in little groups of 2 or 3 waiting and by the time I turned around to get a photo, they were gone. So when I dreamt this circus shoot idea up, what I most wanted was to try to recapture this image, much like the image at the bottom of an earlier post where the clowns are just sort of sitting around in a break room. Surreal.

But here is the reality of the situation as spelled out by Shamrock (All clowns have clown names): "As one of the Shrine clowns, I can tell you that we are all just normal people, of course until we put on our makeup. We all enjoy making children smile and raising money and awareness of our Shrine Hospitals. Looking forward to seeing your pictures and it was a pleasure meeting you at the circus. It was so nice to see all our fans at this years circus."

Fans, indeed!

These clowns were rock stars to the kids at this year's circus as can be seen in one of the above images.

For more of your BADLY NEEDED coulrophobia therapy check out more images of these cool clown here.

Monday, April 28, 2008

The Littlest Clown
People at Work®: The Circus!

As I was making my way around the clowns and fighting my clown phobia I ran into Jiggs and Jiggles. Jiggles is Jigg's 10 year old daughter and this marks her first clown gig.

I noticed her because she was so much smaller than the other clowns. I heard one child in line say "Look, it's a clown kid!"

I later caught up with them again with her non-clown Mom and non clown (so far) sibling. I don't think I've ever seen prouder parents.

As you can see, she takes after her Dad's side of the family.
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Sunday, April 27, 2008

Coming Soon! People at Work®: The Circus!

This week the Anah Temple Shrine, Royal Hanneford Circus, and Bangor Auditorium graciously granted your lowly and humble photographic servant complete and unfettered access to this years Anah Temple Shrine Circus.

All I had really wanted was a chance to take a photo I had missed a few years ago of clowns just hanging out what I got was a better and more complete photo set of the inner workings and all the steps that go into preparing for the circus and the performers and performances themselves.

I also met MANY MANY great people. Did you guys know that the Shriners have a photographic unit along with the clowns and go karts? me either! So brace yourself for an onslaught of images in the coming days and weeks.
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Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Canon XSi Review

Say hello to my leetle friend.

Another in a long line of photographs OF cameras rather than WITH the cameras.

Ok..I've been playing with it for a few hours and comparing it to the Canon XTi. Here are a few thoughts.

12 vs 10 MP? No big deal. Live View? Not that big of a deal and it slows the function of the camera and uses up the battery faster. BUT, it does work better than I expected in that it focuses nicely although I don't understand why you have to press the * button to get it to do so instead of the Shutter button. The Live View shows you how your exposure will turn out, too.

The noise reduction DRASTICALLY reduces your continuous shooting speed. A LOT. No, seriously...I mean it. LISTEN TO ME! I'm not screwing AROUND HERE! IT DOES! AND THAT IS IMPORTANT.

The Image Stabilization is great, but that's a feature of the lenses so...doesn't count here. It was awesome on the XTi, too. There is no ISO100 when you have the highlight thing enabled. MUST EVERYTHING HAVE A PRICE??

Anyway, it's pretty sweet for the money, but not without its costs. I was looking for a second body and a second XTi body might have done the trick, because the bells and whistles are coming at a cost of performance. Fortunately you can switch them off, not like when Panasonic ruined it's FX line of Lumix point and shoots. Don't get me going, my mouth is foaming enough already.

This will be a very nice camera for people moving from point and shoots to DSLRs and that's clearly who Canon is going after with this. But then again, why anyone would buy a 40D now is beyond me.

Here is who should buy this camera: People moving from point and shoots to DSLRs and are too scared to not have live view, people with XTs, people considering 40Ds.

Here is who ought not bother with this camera: People who already have XTis and don't need/want a second body, Nikon users, People who are using the Powershot S series of point and shoots and don't need a low light camera or wider angles.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Zip Kellogg

Canoeist, Bon Vivant, Reference Librarian, Gentleman.

More images from the 2008 Kenduskeag Stream Canoe Race can be found on the sidebar.
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Endangered One Minute

Common as rats, the next.
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Saturday, April 19, 2008

Rest in peace, my little friend.

This image is from an ongoing series used by, with, and for the children I work with as a speech pathologist in the public schools.
Images of recognizable children are never published here or on any of The Thing of the Moment websites due to FERPA regulations and out of respect for the privacy of a 'captive' audience unable to grant their own independent consent.
But within our school community where these photos are freely shared it is the work of which I'm most proud and carries the most meaning.
This particular image was taken a week or so ago. This student had seen an image on my computer of a person holding this yoga pose and wanted to show me that he, also, could do it.
This morning he tragically perished in a fire that leveled his home.
We've now returned to school. This student used to sit in with every speech group that I had because he fit so well with all of them and he was pleasant to have around. So when the first group came in, they matter of factly told me that the student had died and took their places around the table.
There was, of course, an awkward silence by me, but not by them. As soon as they were settled they said they wanted to look at the photos and watch the little videos we had made so that we could see and hear him again.
When we were finished they decided they wanted to create a variation of Uno (which we play incessantly) to honor him. They chose to allow a player to randomly toss in a card, out of turn, that doesn't fit the color or number scheme, just like he used to, much to our (then) irritation.
Kids can be incredible.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Saturday, April 12, 2008

The Porthole Fountain