Snow Falls On Pawnee Drive

The fun thing about March in Northern Indiana is the fact that it could snow at any time. If the conditions over the lake are right the snow will just come down. That was the case on this mid March day as a sudden white out started to come over LaPorte. Just after I made this photo the house was much harder to see. Over the years I made a lot of snow photos of this house so it makes sense that I got to make one more.

One Last Look

I made this photo as I was driving away from the old house on Pawnee Drive. My parents had a nice long run there, but all good things must come to an end. I made one last trip up there before the house was gone to get the last of my things. As I was driving away I stopped to make this photo.

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Saying Goodbye To The Childhood Home

If all goes according to plan today then the house that I knew for over thirty years in LaPorte will not be a part of our family tomorrow.  I have always been someone who likes the past. I love history, and my family history is fun as well. That is what makes a day like tomorrow so hard. I can look around that yard and see moments everywhere. Looking at this picture now I see the basketball pad just off of the pool area. That thing was amazing when it was built, and I put up thousands of shots on it. It is a sad day for our family, but a happy day for a family that is just starting their journey. It seems like just yesterday that I started riding my bike around this new neighborhood looking for new friends to make. The journey since then has been amazing. I made lifelong friends there, and had countless great moments with those kids. The best sporting events that I have ever been to were the ‘championship’ football and basketball games that we would play. Looking back it is hard to believe how long ago those games really were. I still think of the smells from the cherries falling off of the trees in the fall when I hear Whitesnake sing “Here I Go Again.” Many clothes were ruined playing football in the fall.

Getting Rid Of The ‘Stuff’

George Carlin had a great bit on stuff. I have always been someone who likes stuff. I don’t have a lot of expensive stuff, but the stuff that I have is mine. Part of this process of my parents moving has been me going through my stuff. The stuff that was important to me back then is not as important to me now. All of the stuff that I collected through my life is a lot like this house. I talk about the memories that were made there, but at the end of the day the house is just stuff. It is too big for my parents now that my brother and I are finally gone for good. A new family can bring their stuff to it now, and everything can start over. This was a great home to raise a family in. It will be a great place for a new family to do the same. One last thing before I go. Does anyone have any extra room for me to store all of my stuff?

My Seventeen Favorite Drone Shots of 2017

If you had to pick one thing about my photography that changed in 2017 it had to be my usage of a drone. I got my drone shortly after the new year, and I knew that I would overuse it at the beginning. I made a special folder on my website with that in mind. When I started HDR photography I would HDR everything. I used HDR on dogs, beer bottles, and even a pizza. When you have a new toy you tend to play with it too much. That was the case of me with my drone this year. I made some good photos with it during the course of the year. I also made some terrible photos with it just to get out and fly. As the year calmed down a bit so did my usage of the drone. It has now become a tool in my bag to use. I have some ideas that I have been sitting on for a while now with the drone so maybe it needs to come out of my bag a little more this year than it did at the end of last year. Here are my seventeen favorite drone shots from 2017.

Bonus

This is the first shot that I made with my drone after I purchased it. It was a cold day and I wanted to go somewhere with few people in case I did something wrong. We went to the local park where I was able to fly my drone with nobody around me. This was the result of that trip. It will never win any awards, but it was the start of me finding what I liked to do with a drone.

17. One thing that the drone allowed me to do was to be somewhere else. I live in an area surrounded by houses and trees. When something amazing happens in the sky I have a very narrow view to look for it. With the drone I was able to go up and above everything else to find moments like the one above. The double rainbow photo is made by stitching together six separate shots. This taught me that I can use a lot of the techniques that I use on the ground in the air.

16. This is the home that I grew up in. At the end of the month the house will change hands to someone else, and they can bring up their family there. I love this house because it has so many memories in it. At some point though you have to let things go and let others make memories there too. I like that I was able to make a shot of it with my drone to get the lay of the land so to speak. As I put up my countdowns this week you will see more from here I would bet.

15. One of the fun things with the drone is to go overhead and find patterns. Here as I covered a yoga group on the Myers bridge I was able to go above everyone to make a cool shot. I wanted to see all of the colors of the mats. The straight down look was one that I really like. It is just a new way to look at life. You will see it much more before this countdown is over.

14. Here at the Indianapolis Museum of Art you can really see how the straight down view makes a huge difference. Those people running by the benches probably didn’t realize that they formed a skeleton. From overhead it is obvious. This year was all about experimenting with the drone to find what I liked about it, and what seemed to work. This was one of those days where I was just experimenting.  Continue reading “Top 17 Drone Shots of 2017”

Waiting For Santa Claus To Come Tonight

When you have small children today is a day of great excitement. Santa Claus is coming tonight! We know what the real meaning of the season is, and tomorrow I will have a post about that. Today though it is about getting back into the mindset of a child and how great this day is. Now that I talk about it I wonder if Santa will bring me a Canon 200-400mm f/4 lens with the 1.4x extender on it? No I will not shoot my eye out!

More Photos of Santa

Over the course of the holiday season I have collected a few photos of Santa in various forms. Here are a few that I like. Click on any of the images to see it larger.






A Yearly Tradition of Visiting the LaPorte County Museum at Christmas

For the last few years we have made a point of visiting the LaPorte County Museum at Christmas. We do because nothing says Christmas like reading about the legend of Belle Gunness. Actually there is a lot to see at the museum at Christmas. I love the way that they change the exhibits to reflect the Christmas holiday. The little touches like the Bing Crosby record above make it fun.

The Giese Church

The main reason that we head to the museum is to see the Giese Church. I have written in depth about the church before. If you want to know more about it you can read that here. You can see the look of joy on my daughters face as she gets ready to press the button. I wonder if Otto Giese had any idea of the lasting impact his church would have when he first put it out 71 seasons ago? I think that he realized the joy that he brought to children young and old with his church, and that is why he donated it to the museum. This is a tradition that is great fun every year.

More Photos From the Museum

Below are a few of my favorite photos from the museum trip. You can click on any of them to see them larger.



Continue reading “A LaPorte County Museum Christmas”

Spending The Christmas Holiday In My Hometown

Every year I seem to make my way back to my hometown for a short period around the Christmas holiday. That only makes sense that I would. One stop that I have to make every year is the giant Santa statue on Lincolnway. It has been around since I was a kid, and that was a long time ago. The statue has seen better days in spots, but for how old it must be it looks really good. Who knows how many more Christmas holidays that I will spend in LaPorte. I wanted to photograph some of the little things that make Christmas in LaPorte so cool. It is how I first learned about the holiday after all.

A Bittersweet Trip

Last year we were pretty certain that it would be the last that we would spend at our childhood house. Through a bunch of fallen through deals my parents are still in the house. That will all end at the end of January. This last trip home was spent going through all of my stuff that I have conveniently stored there for many years. It is time to move on from most of it, but it was also really cool to see some things that I have not seen for a long time. Some of that stuff will inform some future blog posts.

Spending Some Time Back In LaPorte

I have travelled on this lane many times. It is the lane to the house my grandparents bought on a lake in LaPorte in the early 80’s. Time has passed and my parents now call the lake house their home. Sometimes the light is right, and the lane looks amazing. On the left is a lake, and on the right is a swamp. Down the middle takes you to your destination. The saying keep it between the lines never had so much meaning as it does on this lane.

The Best Camera You Have…

Here on this day I did not have my dSLR with me. I did however have my iPhone 7 Plus. The old saying that the best camera is the one you have on you applied here. I wanted to make a photo of the old lane, and the iPhone worked just fine in the good light. Someday I will come back when the leaves are in good color and the light is right with my dSLR to do this right. For now this works just fine.

Sunsets Back Home

This past weekend I spent back in my hometown of LaPorte, Indiana. Each trip to the Maple City reminds me of just how long I have been gone. I find that I don’t know the town as well as I used to. Simple trips around town seem to trip me up as I second guess myself on where I should be turning. One thing that I do know well is my parent’s house on Pawnee Drive. We started building there in 1985, and I made many lifetime friends in that neighborhood. As I drive through it now though I am reminded of how time has changed everything. Most of the houses that my friends grew up in have new people living there. New generations to go out and play. The house on Pawnee Drive has changed as well over the years, but the core remains.

This Can Be Yours

This house on Pawnee Drive is for sale. It can be yours to raise a family in. It is a great house with many things to help raise your family. A pool, a huge yard, and a great basketball court. I have shot thousands of baskets on that court, but it is time for someone else to do that. If you want to know more about the house you can click here.

The Week In Photos

Last week was an interesting week for me. You can view my favorite photos of the week here on my Exposure page. This coming week will see many more sports photos coming back into the fray. Check out one last sports free post for a while here.

The Basket Where I Learned to Play

A couple of years ago I started a project photographing basketball hoops in Indiana. It is not a novel idea, but one that I have enjoyed. This is the hoop that started that line of thinking. I was playing some basketball while hanging out back home, and I wondered where did other kids and adults get their start? At some point I will take this project a little more seriously, but for now I realized that I needed the hoop where I started. This year I have made a point to shoot for free for less. That just doesn’t ever seem to pay off in the end. Instead of doing that I can have a little free time to work on a couple of side projects that I have been working on.

A Cool Setup

I really was lucky with the setup that I had for basketball. When we first moved into that house in the 80’s I did not have a hoop. I walked down the street to the one there. When the pool was put in so was this 30×40 pad for the basketball court. I think the plan was always to put a shed up when I was down playing basketball there. As of right now I still am not done playing on that court. It has seen many tournaments and games of one on one, and I think that it still has a couple left in it. If the house sells a whole new generation can play on it. I was trying to think of how many thousands of shots that I put up here. Then I started thinking that I might be selling myself short. I may have put up a seven figure number of shots here.