New Focus

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diptych image of girl playing cards

Originally uploaded by Kevin N. Murphy

I’ve been neglecting this blog for the past few months as I focus my spare time on photography. Now that I’ve established a pace with my photography I’m comfortable with I will be writing here again. Occasionally on personal matters but primarily about photography and a little bit about web development.

Photography has become a pretty big part of my recent activities and I’m really enjoying it. I’d like to use this site as a way to explain ideas and the techniques I’ve been using to execute them. I’d also like to explain the problems or challenges I’ve run into in hopes that it might save someone some time or at least just encourage them that others have run into the same problem and to keep their efforts up.

I haven’t really set a schedule for my writing but it’s likely that it will be at least monthly if not more regular than that.

The two pictures on the left were pretty fun to take. I had been experiementing with the Live View function on my Canon 40D and was very surprised to discover how useful it was for composing close up shots in close quarters. For whatever reason it seemed less rude or intrusive to look at the large LCD at about waist level while still engaging the room in light conversation than it would of to use the smaller viewfinder and squat down. Also having the time to delicately adjust the focus manually really let me focus on what I was trying to draw attention to or feature in the the shot. This led to pictures that feel like I’m right there in the action. Right involved in the activity. They look a lot like memories to me. I’m not sure if that translates for everyone that sees them but I’ll keep experimenting with it because I was very happy with the results. I don’t think I’d use the technique much for an actual job but for just hanging around with friends it yielded better results than I normally get.

Give Me Your Eyes, I Need Sunshine

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Talk about fantastic road trip. That was great. Went to Atlanta GA to see Wolf Parade at the Variety Playhouse.

So what’s new? Few things.

Work: Just decided to write a business app in Plone for better integration with the Plone powered intranet site. This is a wise move, I’d personally of loved to keep writing it in Django, but am too honest of a guy to be that selfish. This is better for the company.

Launching about two new distributor sites in the next few months. That means training those teams and lots of hand holding. Actually might be three sites, but I’m unsure about one of them. That team has got a lot more fancy stuff outside of the templates I built and I can’t say how long it will take for them to work it all out. Hopefully they’ll keep hammering away though, they’ve been making decent progress. Nice thing about ExpressionEngine is that it’s pretty easy to learn compared to similar systems. Getting people to learn good html & css isn’t so easy but hey, do what ya can.

-end work

Man I must say it’s great to have real friends. When the chips are down, who’s there? Seriously, if you bail out on people that you said you’d be there for, you suck. Don’t do it.

In other news, my brother, Brian, hung himself and died last week. That was unexpected. Poor dude, was a pretty awesome guy before he caught the insane.

People a pretty crazy sometimes. Maybe not for everyone, but I’ve known and dealt with a lot of certifieably insane people. I’ve known some that could go either way too, it sucks when they choose fantasy over reality.

I could go either way myself, to be honest. There are those moments you know, well maybe you don’t, but I do. I made up my mind on that one a long time ago though, I’m pulling through. Even the worst of it. To me giving up is the same as death, so I’ll give up when I’m dead. So until then, do your worst, I’ll do mine.

Oh, and don’t be a liar, for goodness sake, just admit to being a scoundrel if that’s what you are, at least own up to it. You aren’t fooling anyone. Well, maybe youself, but I don’t believe even you are that dumb. Have a spine, be a human.

and I could take another hit for you
and I could take away your trips from you
and I could take away the salt from your eyes
and take away the spitting salt in you
and I could give you my apologies
by handing over my neologies
and I could take away the shaking knees
and I could give you all the olive trees
oh look at the trees and look at my face and look at a place far away from here

Give me your eyes
I need sunshine
Give me your eyes
I need sunshine
Your blood
Your bones
Your voice

What New York Used to Be

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For a little bit now I had forgotten some guiding viewpoints I previously had a very strong grip on.

I’ve listen to a few extremely effective explanations of how to handle the negative thoughts that face everyone. It’s so simple. Not easy, but simple.

I was looking at some old pictures from 2000 a friend of mine posted to Flickr and I was reminded how rich my past is with awesome people. And how rich the present is. I usually scoff at gurus and their positive attitude, because I’m fairly cynical for humors sake. However, I am genuinely happy. It’s totally up to me.

It’s pretty easy to look at stuff you have no control over and become frustrated with it. Instead of doing that I’ve decided I’m going to love that stuff. So my relationship failed, big deal, I’m better off. That’s the truth. It’s awesome actually. Sure at first it’s shockingly not what the goal was. But once the dust settles and I look back at the time I spent, and the way I conducted myself, the way I set priorities, the way I followed through and showed up even when it wasn’t fair and when it wasn’t sane or rational to do that, how I showed up at times I knew other people wouldn’t of, What do I have to feel bad about? Nothing. I kept my word. I’m not the liar, I’m not the one who gave up, I’m not the quitter. And that is awesome to have lived that, rather than just say I can.

Once I realized this, it just gets better every day. Sure there are always things you don’t expect in life. I didn’t expect to be alive at my age. But I am and that’s great and I’m gonna help people and do awesome stuff.

With jaded eyes and features, you think I really care? You better think about it baby, baby.

Variations on a Theme

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Here is something I like:

I chopped down the house that you had been saving to live in next summer.
I am sorry, but it was morning, and I had nothing to do
and its wooden beams were so inviting.
-Kenneth Koch

The rains are a welcome addition to any afternoon of mine. Post-heavy downpour dawn is one thing that is really awesome in FL.

There were times. I have them now, in my pocket with the stones that you left by the window, the ones you gathered. I wont keep them. Because you are too heavy.

“I thought I’d recommend a book for you to read, and if you don’t want to then MAYBE I”LL READ IT MYSELF!” messages from tampa wake me. Who’s calls are you avoiding today?

I see people I knew from my more tender years. Their eyes are afraid, like children.

I. M. A. Fever.

recognize what is false and part with it

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to shed skin and begin an intake that will make a difference in clear
thinking for conquering any fear that is thrown in a direction when at a
weak point or time of suffering the edge won’t quit if there is no
giving in to what drags on to be negative or seem wrong to live to
carry back home with full intent and better sense recognize what is
false and part with it knowing doubtless by instinct which triggers
thought on how to grow in soul without gold or praised lies which keep
the sheep all right with anything that seems safe and convenient

-Hot Water Music

Visit to Seattle

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CRW_0118

Originally uploaded by Kevin N. Murphy

So I’m visiting Seattle WA this week. So far my trip has been just great.

I had the chance to visit the nice little neighborhood called Fremont and visit the troll under the Fremont Bridge AKA suicide bridge. Pretty cool place.

Being that I’ve recently been freed of strings attached I am seriously planning to move out this way. Might take more than a few months to make it happen, but I want to move on and this would be a very real and positive way to do that, since I actually wouldn’t mind staying here for a very long time. Although, to be honest, nothing compares to Costa Rica in my book.

Photography is becoming a favorite hobby for me. I still haven’t conquered my timidity for shooting portraits of strangers yet, but I think I’m getting better at spotting good shots as I walk around.

I visited the Seattle Central Public Library last night. Really the best Library I have ever seen. Amazing. I wish I had a child I could bring to the children’s section. Tons and tons of open space, desks, computers, light, beautiful natural light really just tremendously awesome building.

Full of Woe & Further to Go

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So I still haven’t been ‘inspired’ enough to tackle the re-design here. But alas, I have some thoughts.

Typography

  • Make use of that cool font mixing with italics and line height where you have of and for bigger than the rest and in a serif font. So yeah I’ll do that.
  • I’d like to find a way to work in some Sanskrit aka Hindi script but am not sure where or how or if.

Mobile

  • I’ll have an iphone and more general purpose mobile interface, cause I can.

Comments

  • Gravitar support
  • a fancy “I’m the author of this wob blag” style for my own comments

Portfolio/sandbox area

  • Sounds sort of oxymoronic but I want a portfolio and a sandbox area, and am thinking the portfolio might be a good place for it. Maybe not. But I’d like to blow stuff up everynow and then and have an area for that.
  • Need to have quality integration with Flickr. Think http://jeffcroft.com, cause croftie has about the sickest integration i’ve ever seen. Read his post on the re-design. (I’d link to it but i’m getting a proxy error with it at time of writing this )

Online Dating

  • Need to have a way to qualify requests for dates with me. (I get a lot of these so it only makes sense to build this into the wob blag)

That’s what i think for now.

You are Repressed, but Remarkably Dressed

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But twice-two-makes-four is for all that a most insupportable thing.
Twice-two-makes-four is, in my humble opinion, nothing but a piece of
impudence. Twice-two-makes-four is a farcical, dressed-up fellow
who stands across your path with arms akimbo and spits at you.
Dostoevsky

Seattle WA June 13th-21st FTW

The truth is no respecter of preferences.

Notes from the Underground is pure genius. That book does page after page what many try, with fleeting success, to do on twitter in 140 characters bits.

I’d say no if I were you. Thankfully for you, I’m not.

Someday we will die in your dreams

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SO…

I think I may re-design this site soon. I’d like to house my photography a bit, and I currently have no mechanism in place for doing so. I’d also like to clean up the WP install. I’m honestly really trying to wait to update until i have something built in django I want to use but honestly I’m so busy that will probably never happen.

“on the face of disaster i planted glances
and into a gaze they eventually grew
and all of my hopes began to fall through
so let it be known, the disaster was you
(although in unaltered stances)”
-Kevin N. Murphy 6/4/06

I am hopefully traveling to the great city of Seattle very soon. I should find out on Monday for sure. BarCampSeattle is the day before I would be slated to arrive. So I may try and get out there early. Might be cool to demo out there, but oh what topic?

I submitted some photographs to photoshelter.com to see if they qualify for sale, only to read the directions after the fact and realize my submissions probably will get rejected. Whatever I’ll re-submit.

Huzzah!