Posts Tagged ‘photography’

There are two people in our family who are just so funny that you love to be around them and often the comment is heard, “if we could get Sharon and Carol together one day, we would die from laughter.” 

Sharon lives in Indiana and Carol in Wisconsin, so it has not happened yet, but Sharon has begun blogging.  She was shamed into it really by a couple of bloggers, okay, me  and her friend.  She tried her hand, Just who are you people? « Braindebris’s Weblog, and was (as we suspected) hysterical.  She is one of ‘those’ people, who if she wrote regularly enough would be publishing a book.  She is that funny, just check out the The Immortal Rabbit « Braindebris’s Weblog if you want to split a gut.

She took a long break from blogging, much to our disgust, and is back now on a weekly blog schedule.  You would think she has a life or something!  She also mentioned it takes a good hour to put a blog post together.  Who knew!   

So, this morning, I checked how her weekend was and she brought up the often mysterious workings of the blogosphere and the people who take the time to read your blog but rarely write comments. 

My readership is not huge, it has dropped since I have gotten less regular in posting. However, in the beginning, when my readership would hit 1,000 for the month, I never had commenters, other than one.  There were 999 people out there lurking.   XUP always comments, all the way from Canada.  Aren’t you ashamed fellow Americans?  I have to get comments from Canada.  Pollyanna Rainbow Sunshine and the Needles of Doom often commented, but I have been really remiss commenting on their blog lately.  Don’t you love that name though!

 I have also been blogging a bit less lately myself, as I work on my eternal update to my website.  I feel like one of those people on the commercial, staring wide eyes, pupils dilated from staring at the screen, mind numb … anyway, you get the not pretty picture.  I only have one section left to go on the website and am soooo look forward to it being done.

This morning, here is a copy my monthly stats.  Notice the slow decline.

So, I checked Search terms. 

“no blood for oil Viggo” – as in Viggo Mortensen, no surprise there. Half of my readership is searching for “Viggo” –  Talk about stalkers! 

“Worms …” – EUWWW! especially when in the house. 

“actor with low ears” –  Okay, is this person casting a movie?  I have written about actors, and I have written a post due to the lovely commercial based on the old song “do your ears hang low. ” But, I have NEVER written about an actor with low ears.  I am not even sure why you would want to find an actor with low ears.


In an effort to raise my stats, I realize that I have three sure winners:

  • Viggo Mortensen
  • photography
  • Movie reviews

Okay, Viggo Mortensen is hot and I do understand the fascination.  He keeps his private life mysterious and he’s hot and he likes dark chocolate and he’s hot.  What more could you want?  The only thing is, I do not actually know Mr. Mortensen (I love his name by the way— Viggo Mortensen—-it’s lyrical.  This is coming from someone named VanVleck.  Not so lyrical.

So, I shall now vow to make more of an effort to review movies about Viggo Mortensen and you, my kind readers (numbers 13 to 30 and occasionally 1,000) shall occasionally drop me a line to let me know what you like, or do not like, on my blog.

Oh, and I will try not to be a stalker myself.


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I know you are not going to believe this, but HONEST, I am not writing this blog to get my stats up.  I rarely even check on them anymore.  In fact, I was shocked to realize today, since I rarely get comments, that I have a following.  “You do love me.”  Well, like at any rate.

So, when I mention Viggo Mortensen, please believe me, that I am not mentioning Viggo Mortensen to ratchet up ratings. 

Viggo Mortensen is again in the news with his role in The Road (2009) and was referred to as being “complicated” in an article I read recently, and I apologize that I cannot find it to link here.  It seemed to me that the author had no understanding of the person he is.  Not that I would know what kind of person he is, having only read about a gazillion interviews of his, but never having met him.

But, I am thinking that he is actually a very simple person and not complicated at all.

Perhaps I can relate, as I have multiple artistic interests also  and feel as though we have a lot in common.  We both love the outdoors.  He speaks approximately five languages fluently and I can speak, let’s see, exactly one.  I was learning Amslan at one time and I have taken a Spanish class four times (obviously, not successfully).  But, I think our joint passion for Dark Chocolate counts.

It seems that he is an honorable, honest person.  I feel it is more complicated to be dishonorable and a liar as you have to keep all those lies straight.  Although, the liars I know are not very good at it.  And, you know who you are!!!

I think, as an artistic person, he is also simply entertained.  Getting in his truck and taking off on a discovery road trip, spending hours sketching, photographing, spending your time as someone else, being honest are all, in my mind, simple enjoyable things.

Now, the guys who have to have their heads full of ringing cell phones, and Wall Street numbers, and never sitting still for one minute to be in their own head—those are the guys who are complicated.

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 donna tiger

This cuties name is Donna and the date is 10-31-58 and she is a mystery to me, as I have some of her photos and would love to return them to someone who might have a personal connection with them.

If I had “life” to do over again, one of my choices would have been to be a photo journalist, possibly even before I would have been a classical violinist.  I love faces and I love photographs.   In fact, I grew up with a camera in my face and a red sweatshirt on.

My parents loved to take pictures.  Dad loved to take movies and they both loved to take 3D photos.  This extended to other family members and even when I went to my grandmother’s house for the holidays, we would get out of the car and my aunt would be standing out in a blizzard to capture every moment of the holiday, on celluloid.

I worked for law offices for years and occasionally, we would be told to go through boxes and take out anything we wanted.  This usually was the result of a marital break up or an estate case.  For some reason, no one wanted the stuff in the box and the lawyers were stuck with it.  One time there was a photo album in one of the boxes and, not being able to abandon photos, I took it home.

Eventually, I quit carting that photo album around in my many moves, but I could not throw away the photos.  I saved those photos and they are like owning a mystery to me. 

Most seem to feature a girl named Donna or Bobbie.  I am thinking she went to West Technical High School in Cleveland 2, Ohio. (That is not a typo, that is an address from the 50s.).  The reason I say that is this photo is stamped on the back: DEPARTMENT OF PHOTOGRAPHY, West Technical High School.  Not too dumb, am I?

bobbie donna

I believe the girl’s name is Donna or Bobbie as she resembles the girl on the left in this photo titled, “Winding up For The Take Off” and is dated Oct. 8, 1951.

donna bobbie

And, I think that Miss Vanek must have been one of her teachers.  This photo was dated December 1954 and identified by the teacher’s name on the back.  Doesn’t the girl on the left resemble Donna or Bobbie, but then the girl on the right could be one of them too?

donna and miss vanek

Finally, and there are other photos without any identification, we know that somehow they know “THE SKIPPER FAMILY.”  Season’s Greetings to all was included in their album.

donna the skipper family

I have to tell you.  This is such an iconic photo.  I love it.  It is obviously for Christmas but I gather, by the foliage, that they are in the south?  And, here stands Mrs in a fur hat, scarf, coat and gloves, while daughter is just in a sweater and he is in a suit. 

So, if anyone out there in the blogosphere, knows Donna or Bobbie or the Skipper Family, maybe we can get these pictures back to their family.  Just email or comment and let me know.

Oh, and the red sweatshirt reference??  Mom thought red showed up really well in color photographs.  So, for vacation, every year, she bought me a new red sweatshirt.  If you find any photos of a girl in a red sweatshirt, standing by the sign for entering every state in the country, or by every statue, landmark and waterfall ever seen on vacation, you know who to send them to.

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It has been five weeks since I returned from the second wedding of this summer.  Although, it’s not really summer anymore, is it?  I don’t know about where you are, but my furnace has been running already.  I had a job at this wedding.  I was the photographer, so there is no funny story of Bailey’s and me and brother-in-laws. I did not start one single argument.  I’m so proud of myself. 

I did post The Case of the Haunted Church « Savanvleck’s Weblog already, and a good mom/grandma story Grandma gets blasted « Savanvleck’s Weblog that occurred at the wedding. 

I have heard the average cost of a wedding is $20,000, and I have to wonder why that money is not put down on a house, and a party held instead. The two weddings I attended this summer were both wonderful events but I am sure neither one came anywhere near that cost. 

Wedding one was held outdoors in their yard and, while professionals set up the tent, and there was a fantastic string quartet, oh, and do not forget the vegetarian catering that was out-of-this world.  A lot of the wedding was set up by relatives and the groom’s mother/baker made an absolutely delicious cake.  This niece had also asked me to photograph her wedding and I really felt bad about turning her down but I was not sure I was physically up to it and I did not have backup’s of equipment or energy.

True to Murphy’s law, my camera malfunctioned during the second ceremony.  The “going down the aisle” pictures were bad quality and some totally blurry as there was suddenly a lag time in my shutter and my flash was not functioning well either.  It was almost like a near dead battery but once out of the chapel, my camera was fine.  So, either the chapel was haunted or their massive sound equipment system interfered. I asked the bride’s uncle if he had gotten the kiss, he said that he had but that he was also having a problem with his camera in the chapel.

Both weddings were celebrations of love and fun parties, without breaking the bank. 

The second wedding was a community and relative supported event.  Friends and family cooked and set up the buffet. Mother of the Bride, having been a volunteer fireman and now an EMT, rented the fire hall (it was a great place for the reception), and I believe a friend did the cakes and another friend the flowers.  I, great aunt of the bride, contributed by taking the photos.  I had photographed her mom and dad’s wedding.  When I was full of Bailey’s and a bit irate at what I saw the first wedding photographer doing, my niece (crafty woman she is) came over and took advantage of my weakness and asked me again to please do the photos. I agreed and I had a great time doing it.

I had my reservations about doing it, originally, but I found out that if I can push myself enough to shoot photos for twelve hours in a day, I can do a lot more on my rehab than I am doing. It was a good lesson and I had a great time doing it.  Just wish I could go back and do the first one, because I had that much fun.

The bride and groom are settling into their new home in Arizona, so I hope they will not object if I post a photo, or two, to share with you.


This is the family.  Left is my mom (Great grandmother of the bride).  And, she holds the arm of brother-in-law.  His wife, my sister, is in the black dress with blue flowers (on the right).  The other “just married” couple is right behind my sister.

Here is my favorite picture.  It is the bride and one of her bridesmaids.  What a beautiful smile.

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These are my top posts, searches and most active views according to WordPress this morning.

And, can anyone tell me how to enlarge my font without going back to word and cutting and pasting forever?  There has to be a way to do it.  Sorry, for the bold but I had to make it bigger in Headings.

Anyway, #%#%, I’m back to small again. Okay, at this point in time, Floods beat out Viggo in posts, yet he leads in searches.  Well, not him exactly, his “maybe” existing girlfriend does.  Photography beats him in most active. 

I have thought about writing about Sarah Palin, that should really raise my stats, but I don’t have the stomach for it.  I’d rather refer you here:  Mudflats  (I know, this is breaking my non-controversial rule, but she just reminds me of a beauty queen from the 50s; with a bad attitude.)

Top Posts

Update on Brown County Indiana floods-tornados, 270 views

Floods in Brown County, Indiana, 178 views

Viggo Mortensen – 99.9% perfect, 160 views

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Excuse me for being absent but I have been gone to a wedding this past weekend and week. It was only a three hour drive, and that was truly nice. I had been asked to do the photography for both weddings I attended this summer, as my nieces say they love my pictures.  I was not sure I was up to a twelve hour day of shooting and I do not have professional equipment (in any area), so I said I would be back-up.


This did not work out at the first wedding as the photographer stated no one could shoot a picture but her.  I’m sure she did not realize the stubborn independence of our family as most said, “My daughter’s in the wedding party, just let her try and stop me.”  Since the photographer did most of her shooting sitting in a chair, I got completely frustrated by the time of the reception and got up and moved around the floor taking pictures of the attendants dancing.


I do like to mix things up in angles shot and such, but frankly, with a raised dance floor and a photographer sitting in a chair, I do not know how she thought she could get all eight couples, each in a nice picture, without moving her sorry butt.  Either she was ill or she was a big fan of Bollywood.  (It seemed to me the first few times I watched a Bollywood movie they do tend to favor angles shooting up the nose.)


Anyway, so by reception time, and after my scene with brother-in-law, see *Savanvleck’s Weblog* I had my lovely glasses of Bailey’s and when the second bride’s mother came over and told me a horror story about a friend paying $3,000 for pictures and having them end up looking like crap, I threw good sense to the wind and said I would photograph the second wedding.


SCENE: Weeks later, and the second wedding.  The night before, I was able to access the reception hall, set up my trusty light tent (a must have for artists) and take some formal pics of flowers, etc (a request by the lady who did them as she is setting up a new business. 


 The morning of the wedding, I accessed the church early and did some interiors of this beautiful morning sky, stained glass lit church.  Note, that my camera worked then.



I also took some of the bouquets without my tent, not a good idea, but ok.  I did some of attendants and guests and camera still worked fine.  Here is one of a brother and sister.  I love to shoot pictures of people.




And, then the wedding was starting. I went in and shot some of the organist and the crowd and my battery began to lag.  I have a Nikon D50 and I have never had problems when it was fully charged.  This battery pack is like the energizer bunny.  Even flash pictures are fast. Yet during the entire ceremony, the lens was lagging or just would not open on time, even when the flash was off.  I totally missed the kiss. I got maybe two good pictures.  SEE, this is why I did not want to be the main photographer.  


I asked my nephew, who was also taking some pictures, if he had gotten the kiss and he said yes, but that his camera was doing the same thing. 


Later, after the ceremony, we went back into the chapel and the pictures I took were fine.  I do believe that the chapel is either haunted by a past bride or their massive sound system equipment was interfering.


Tomorrow: more on the wedding and my week.  A week that I should have been home fixing all the pics for the wedding couple and instead I was visiting. Sorry, Jen, I’m working on it now.

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Yucca flowers against Indiana Sky

Yucca flowers against Indiana Sky

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