"This garden universe vibrates complete..Some may get a sound so sweet..Vibrations reach on up to become light..Then thru gamma and out of sight. Between the eyes and ears there lie the sounds of color and the light of a sigh. And to hear the Sun...what a thing to believe, but it's all around if we could but perceive. To know ultraviolet, infrared, and x-rays..Beauty to find in so many ways"...Graeme Edge / Mike Pinder from the Moody Blues “In Search Of The Lost Chord”. These words remind me that the world is a lot more than it seems...something I’ve known and experienced from time to time. But somehow the grind of daily life pulls us off track and we lose the connection. To keep one's awareness open and deal with the world on a daily basis is a real handful. For me, grabbing the camera and taking a walk can start a somewhat Zen like process...which really isn't a process...it just is. I've always regarded my interest as an avocation...something sourced from the heart. This interest really started right after high school, but earlier on there were brief glimmers of what was to be. I discovered that there’s something cool about stumbling onto a special scene and being able to capture that image, in that moment. And this process that I've gone through all these years really has been one of discovery. And that’s how my better images feel...like I’m discovering something when I find them. The tools I’ve used over the years have varied considerably, and at this point I’m taking more of a minimalist approach. Over the last 10 years, I’ve owned and appreciated in order: Canon 10D, Canon 20D, Sony S600, Sony W330, Canon G12, Canon ELPH 520HS, and last, but not least, the Canon T3i...from point & shoot to DSLR...and you know what...they all took excellent pictures within their limitations. This reinforces that little gem of knowledge that we so easily forget, stating that some of the best and most important photographers worked with very minimal gear. Like so many other things in life, it isn’t what you have, it’s how you use it. With that said, I'll be featuring some new hardware here, so everything done after 12/14 will be shot with an Olympus OMD E-M10...and I'm looking forward to using this camera very much. There's a bit of set up work to do to get the best from it...there's a very high level of custom-ability and you really need to get your head into the manual. As far as software goes, I’m still using PaintShop Pro 5 Ultimate for basic editing and I’ve added PhotoNinja for working in RAW. I’ll hang on to PSP 5 because Nik Color Efex Pro 3 is bundled with it, and I really like the B&W conversion in that suite. No other conversion I’ve tried is as easy to use, or as effective, as this one. The problem now is that Google has swallowed Nik’s collection and only sells it as a full suite. I can’t justify spending that much just for the use of one part of the suite...sorry Google. So with good warez and a decent image grabber, I can hit the streets and slip back into the process again. The blog is still active and available here...