Busy, Busy

So… I’ve filed to register a company.

I’m starting a photography company. Notice, I didn’t say “studio”. I have my reasons for that, but… I won’t get into them now.

The forms were filed a few days ago. I’ve begun to do more research and acquire more equipment that’ll allow me to really work at a higher level. Focusing on flash photography right now. The art of creating light and melding it for one’s uses. For this, it seems like it really does depend up on the modifiers you’ve got.

I’ve a domain name, working on a portfolio to put up online. I’ll post that stuff up here once it’s done. That alone has some tidbits that need attention on a different level.

I need to file a trademark for my logo too. It, in theory, is being designed by a friend. If that doesn’t come through, I’ll just use something I found and just modify it to my needs.

Nervous. Anxious. Giddy. Stressed. Numb.

Still can’t believe I’m doing this. It’s almost like I’m auto-pilot. I just read two books on photography in a week. Not exactly casual reading… Finished a flash photography book today and a specialist book on my camera body the other day. (Both good reads.) I’ve a pawful of other books I want to read too. I’ve two models (one being my partner!) lined up to help me experiment. I might have 3 more sitting next door and 4 or 5 more on the other side. Maybe 2 more in the front house. *chuckles* I might have clients in this neighborhood as it stands… Who knows?

In terms of the business side… I’ve set myself an average limit of $5000 to get started. So far, I’m a good $1800 below, but that’s going to be shot once I purchase more equipment. Realistically, it’s going to be closer to $6000. If I hit $7500, I’m screwed.ย That is my absolute maximum.

I did a rough business plan in my head and that maximum should never be breached. I should get everything I need within that. Everything.

I’ve yet to really focus on how much my rates will be. I’ll have to offer incentives to sugarcoat whatever cost I come up with. Which, for me, isn’t necessarily an incentive, but a courtesy — a default.

If I remake my start-up cost within a year, I should be 100% okay. If I make profits within the first year, I’m golden… If we just assume that one goal and not anything to live off of, then I’d have to make $7500 in the working year. The working year is probably going to end up being 265 days once you include sick days, vacation, etc. (In reality, it’ll probably end up being closer to 300 or more since my vacations and days off will sync with my partner.) Just divide and we’d get $28.30 base — assuming a job each of those days (265).

Psychologically, I’m such on auto-pilot, I’m almost going philosophical about it. Like, “It’s meant to be.” Yet, I’m so numb that if it does go bad, I won’t be crush or hurt.

Even as I sit here, I can see photos in my head of how I want this first job to look. This first job is key. I have to impress. I have to get them talking about me. I cannot afford — financially or otherwise — to screw this first one up.

This has to be the right thing. It has to be. It’s flowing. It’s even not perfect. It has the rough spots mixed in with those shining moments of perfect. This has to be what I’m supposed to be doing.

…right?

Until later, be safe and enjoy y’all’s days,

Bae

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Day 13: Lucky Number 13

Weight: 216.4 lbs (98.2 kg)

Got some macro shots yesterday…

Trying hard to reach my place of zen. Stuff has been going on that has completely derailed me. Shopping to get the rest of my kit together. I’ll email the first job today to tell them I should be good to go on doing the portraits. Anxious about that. ๐Ÿ˜€ The individual portraits won’t be anything too hardcore. Unless she has the patience, of course, to wait for my flash and some other accessories that will really kick it up a notch or two.

Anycase, here’s the newest batch of photos. A lot of these are just experimental shots in that I was playing and trying to learn. Quite a few deal with textures.

I ended up going out to get some naughty food (read: donuts) and hang out with my partner a bit. Found out he’s utterly exhausted. :-/ When I sleep, I sleep. But apparently, he’s been waking up every night the last few nights at 2A for no reason what-so-ever.

On the way back, I got some fresh feed for the birds, but also stopped by a park. A big step for me! ๐Ÿ˜€ I didn’t do much because I still haven’t gotten a strap and I honestly don’t want to lug around the weight of a 7D+100-400mm lens in my paws. (I did get a squirrel shot, but it was out of focus. The tree it was on was sharp as a tack though!) It was a quick investigative trip. I’ll have to go back once I have the additional gear I’d like to get. Lots of opportunities for epic photographs. Just gotta hurry before the season is over. ๐Ÿ™‚

Becoming quite good at shopping for used equipment. Just made an entire shopping basket of new gear then found a bunch of used equivalents in condition 8+ or higher. ๐Ÿ˜€

Just found out I’ve a month to really prepare for the first job. Awesomeness. ๐Ÿ™‚ Perfectly fine with me. Will give me time to study up and polish!

Until later, be safe and enjoy y’all’s days,

Bae

Day 12: Of Better Days

Weight: 217.0 lbs (kg)

So, after yesterday’s events, I ended up eating pizza and lava cakes. I gained pounds, but also gained some muscle as well. So, I’m not too worried about that. I’m more worried about the fat percentage, which has remained the same. ๐Ÿ™‚

Today’s a two hour ride and I’m trying to get psyched up for it. As long as I’m left alone, I should be okay, but…

I still feel like I’m on edge after yesterday. Like moments away from snapping hard. Being out and taking photographs helped, so I’ll do that after breakfast.

Did some portraiture yesterday and I think some of it turned out well. Some pseudo-posed shots and some candid shots. Will have company over later. Just have to get the courage up to ask them if it is okay if I practice on them. It’ll be two adults and a child, I think. Excellent chance for action shots.

Some of the photos I took yesterday have been my best so far, I think… I’ll just do massive mosaic for y’all since I’ve no real story to tell with these. Some of these are just silly shots for practice that just ended up being pleasing in the end, other are artistic, and yet others are the typical nature photographs.ย ๐Ÿ˜€ Anywho, enjoy.

… click, click bloody click…

I’m on the ragged edge. I swear to bob…

No cycling today. Really, really going to try hard to make this photography work. -.- I need to get out of here. Out, out, out! >.< O. U. T. Out.

-sighs-

I’m okay, I’m alright. I’m A-Okay.

Until later, be safe and enjoy y’all’s days,

Bae

Day 11: Zen

Weight: 215.2 lbs (kg)

*Statements Redacted*

I woke up to a pretty awesome sight, thanks to y’all. My email box full of “likes” and “follows” for the previous post. ๐Ÿ˜€

After this mornings… -rubs muzzle- events… I have a feeling I will be spending a good deal outside trying to be in my happy place. So… I do not doubt that more pictures will be post today. The wildlife is fairly restricted here since I’m stuck to the backyard — venturing out in the world would be a bad idea today, I think — but there should be some interesting things, given some patience.

Okay. All better. Photography = Zen.

I got a photo of a wasp… so, this one is not really for the squeamish, I suppose. I couldn’t figure out how to crop it, so I’ll show the two that I came up with. One is more “study” while the other has more compositional elements.

To bring y’all back around, here’s a picture of one of the two squirrels. I couldn’t sex it, so I don’t know if it is Rufus or Jemima (formerly Rachel). [A friend of ours, who lives in Australia, has a plushy squirrel named Jemima. :-D]

IMG_3996 (2)

After the rains, the grass is beginning to turn green again. They aren’t the only things turning green from being happy about water.

Thisย lizard jumped right in front of me. I saw a leaf move then followed the logical route of least resistance for a lizard and poof. There he was. The photograph makes it look larger than he really is. This one is young and much smaller than its adults at probably only 1/2 to 2/3 the size. The patterning on the back is really nice. And the little fellow was very cooperative once he realized I wasn’t going to hurt him.

I did get a few bird shots, but none of them worked out. Was about to post one of them up of a pretty read-head, but I couldn’t get over how fuzzy/out of focus it looked. :-/ Practice makes perfect. That shot was directly affected by shooting through glass.

Holy good Christmas… I’ve got some more photos for y’all tomorrow. Just spent a few hours roasting outside — can’t ‘take’ off my shirt, have to ‘peel’ it off — and was rewarded with some interesting stuff. ๐Ÿ˜€

Until later, be safe and enjoy y’all’s days,

Bae

P.S.: Tomorrow is a long day for cycling — 2 hours — so… chances are it may go up late or seem quickly put together. xD

Day 10: Backyard Friends

Weight: 215.2ย lbs (97.6 kg)
Ride Time:ย 1h — 9h15m
Distance: 15.0 mi (24.1 km) — 137.3ย mi (~221km)
Food Diary: (Absent)

Getting back on schedule today. ๐Ÿ˜€ No eggs for breakfast, so I’m just adding another hamsteak. Should have enough time to cycle before we have to head out around 12ish… I hope. Just gotta stay on top of timers.

Now, I promised pictures of some backyard birds… I suppose I’ll start with the Mourning Doves.

Mourning Dove Study

I called this one Mourning Dove Study since we get to see the 3 primary identifying sides of the bird. These suckers used to not come by all that often, but now the finches have them as pets. Yes, I kid not. The little finches purposefully scatter food from the feeder onto the ground by flicking their heads back and forth. It’s an interesting dynamic to watch because the doves won’t bother the finches but will sometimes bully other birds (not often, but sometimes).

Finches are the most common visitor we’ve got. No questions asked about that. It’s probably due to the feed we use (a four season blend with lots of small things). But that’s okay. Small birds are just too adorable…

The thing about finches is often they’re playful. Yes. They’re even hyperactive. But… they’re also competitive. Squabbles over the feeder aren’t all that uncommon. Not a day-to-day occurrence, but, they do happen. As a family group, they have the capacity to bully other more aggressive and territorial birds like Jays and Cardinals. Though I’ve never actually seen the former happen, the latter I saw yesterday.

IMG_3891 (2)

This poor guy was being bullied by the family group. It’s a juvenile cardinal, a rather sickly pathetic looking one. But that appearance is about the norm. Lucky for him, his fellow cardinals wouldn’t have anything of the bullying and after a bit, 3 or 4 more flew in — with a juvenile of their own — and kept watch over the two juveniles as they ate! ๐Ÿ˜€

IMG_3897 (2)

This one was kind enough to give me the idealic Cardinal pose.

As a side note, if you see a lot of beaks open, it isn’t because they’re calling, but panting and trying to cool off. I’ve noticed that a lot of the best pictures I’ve been getting is contrary to normal convention — which says that dawn and dusk are the best times. All of these pictures were within 12P-6P. But, I suppose, conventions aren’t steadfast rules.

Cooper's Death Glare

Cooper isn’t amused with steadfastness though… predictability he enjoys. Since, after all, he can always rely on a cool bath. He does have a funny side though. It isn’t always about pecking out eyeballs and clawing backs.

“You want me to touch what? Uh, no. No, no, no. No. Ew. I just cleaned my claws, thank you.”

Maybe he wishes he were a flamingo. Or a stork. Or some other long legged water bird. Teasingly, I titled that photo “Cooper’s EW! Gay Moment” — and those who follow me regularly know that’s a joke since, well, I’m with a man… which kinda, you know, makes me gay too, I suppose, if you want to use those kinds of groupings.

This is the bird that keeps leaving little presents in the form of feathers. ๐Ÿ˜€ I saw him fly off yesterday out of tree next to the bird bath, so he does hang out here. Now that I’ve seen that, I’m going to try to capture him sitting in it.

The ride was definitely brutal, but finished it.

Also found a pair of books that should be interesting. ๐Ÿ˜€

Until later, be safe and enjoy y’all’s days,

Bae

 

Day 9: Nature’s Backyard

Weight: 213.8ย lbs (kg)
Ride Time:ย —
Distance: —

Okay, so… yesterday it stormed. Apparently bad enough for our power to be lost. I didn’t think it was all that bad, but apparently the power did. It got scared and ran away back into the generators from wince it came and it took a good 3 hours or so (thank goodness only that) for its handlers to gets its courage up again so it could power our house.

That being said… I really don’t feel like cycling today. Like… at all. So… I’m not. It isn’t a lazy thing, but more like a schedule thing. My partner worked a midnight to 8 shift as a favor for a friend whose department was struggling. Thankfully, he got home around 7. But I stayed up until 2 or something. Their store had been without power since 6:30 that afternoon, so instead of doing what he had volunteered to do, he was tasked to help remove all refrigerated and frozen inventory. There is no dairy, no eggs, no meat, no frozen, at his store. Gone. Want to talk about inventory loss? Ouch… Wouldn’t want to foot that bill!

When a storm rolls in, my partner and I often go out because the little froggies come out. The frogs we getย vary greatly in size, but there is one that is just flat out adorable. It doesn’t croak. It doesn’t sound or, really, even look like a ‘normal’ frog. Instead it sings. You know, like a song bird. It chirps and warbles and sings.

But a sacrifice had to be made with their astounding ability to sing. They are dumb. Really dumb. They decide to go swimming in our pool thinking that it’s all great n’ all that but come to realize — to their shock and horror and, often, death — there is no way out.

Lo and behold, when I went outside to fill the feeder, I saw one floating in the pool all splayed out ‘dead frog’-like. Feeling bad, I casually scooped it up with the sieve expecting it to be a study in rigor mortis. But when I did, it curled up back to normal. I nearly squealed. It was alive!

I ran to the patio then inside and got fresh water and began to bath the poor guy, trying to get the chlorine off of him and out of him system. He sat still for the longest time, but when I put my finger near his nose, he hopped his front feet on top of it and just remained still. ๐Ÿ˜€

Canon 7D, Canon EF 28-135mm IS USM f/3.5-5.6, ISO 800, 1/250, f/5.6

Canon 7D, Canon EF 28-135mm IS USM f/3.5-5.6, ISO 800, 1/250, f/5.6

I tried scooting him after a bit and he didn’t budge, so I made to grab him and he did this wild hopping — almost like he couldn’t control it. I’ve seen similar antics from these frogs, so maybe it’s just its species.

Eventually he stopped and I continued his bath. I sat there with him occasionally dowsing him with some fresh water. He slowly became more active and, seemingly, alert as he cleaned his nose and eyes a few times and looked left and right. It was neat watching the water puddle ripple due to his breathing.

Canon 7D, Canon EF 28-135mm IS USM f/3.5-5.6, ISO 640, 1/200, f/5.6

Canon 7D, Canon EF 28-135mm IS USM f/3.5-5.6, ISO 640, 1/200, f/5.6

Eventually, he decided to walk away. He didn’t jump, but crawled/walked out of the puddle toward some place he had in mind to hide from the head. His movements were fluid enough, so I’m sure he’s doing fine now. Hopefully he learned his lesson and he’ll teach others not to jump into the pool!

I’ll be back on schedule tomorrow. Today’s kinda a fool-off, chill day. My partner has today and tomorrow off, so… we might as well enjoy it. An entry for today for the food may or maynot happen. Not entirely sure, since I really didn’t have breakfast. Just broke right into a rather not-so-healthy lunch.

Might spend some of today outside sitting still with my camera in my paws. I have a friend who is an admirer of lizards and we’ve got probably 6 or 7 back here — each with their own little territories.

Until later, be safe and enjoy y’all’s days,

Bae

Day 8: A Meeting with Destiny

Weight: 214.2 lbs (kg)
Ride Time:ย 1h — 8h15m total
Distance: 15.8 mi (~25.4 km) — 122.3ย mi (~196.8 km) total
Food Diary: Entry 6, Entry 7 (EEP! Sorry guys! Didn’t link 6!)

Today was the day that I was scheduled to have a meeting with destiny. She said it would be no later than 10:30A, but she gave no other time. She likes to keep things open and flexible, y’all know how she is… Well… She arrived at 9:44A.

It took me a while to figure out what camera body and pair of lenses I wanted/needed. After some research on birding, I decided on the above.

Already have my first portrait job. It’s for a start-up non-profit. One of our neighbors is a highly motivated individual and has started it under her own power while 1) maintaining a family, 2) pursuing her M.S. and 3) holding down a job. She wants portraits of the board members and then a group shot. Should be interesting. I’ll need to get business cards made… Also offered other photographic services since her non-profit is perfectly placed for photojournalism.

Goodness… business cards. Business cards. This really is heading somewhere, isn’t it… *chuckles*

The package arrived while I was cycling so needless to say, be desire to finish cycling dwindled very quickly. But, in the end, it was completed. The saved data shows pretty clearly though that I didn’t want to though!

Waiting for the battery to charge. Not used to this size of DSLR — not to mention the weight. I’ve always fancied cross-body straps for camera since it’s out of the way yet easily accessible. I’ll need to get one.

I’ll tell the story and the idea at a later time.

Until later, be safe and enjoy y’all’s days,

Bae