Aging and Birthdays

“Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.”

Mark Twain

I have never been big on celebrating my birthday. I remember one year my mom called to wish me happy birthday. I told her it wasn’t my birthday, I didn’t know what day of the month it was but it didn’t stop me from opening my mouth and inserting my foot. My mother was quick to remind me that she was there for the delivery, yes she said it, and that she should know. Once again mom was right.

I remember as a kid I thought 40 was old. I thought you moved into the old folks home at that age. I had no idea how wrong I was. As I celebrated my 25th birthday, I came to realize that people lived into their 60s, 70s, and even 80s. Ok I never said I was the sharpest tool in the shed.

I never really thought I would make it to my 60s. But to my surprise I just turned 68. I have reached that point in life where my body and mind seem to be arguing a lot. My body says you really aren’t going to do that are you? You better think about what you are doing and my mind says hold my Geritol and watch this!

Are Black and White Photos Appealing?

“Photography is more than a medium for factual communication of ideas. It is a creative art.”

Ansel Adams

Ansel Adams was an American landscape photographer and environmentalist. He was well known for his black and white images of the American West. He created many black and white masterpieces, but I think his most famous is “Monolith, the Face of Half Dome. I know the first time I saw it I wanted to be a photographer.

I am a long way from being an Ansel Adams but I like black and white pictures. I just don’t know that there is really a good market for it. I guess I will find out. The top photo is a picture I took of one of the buildings that was used to process iron ore located in Park Hills, MO. It is now the property of Missouri and is a part of St. Joe Park. It has been designated a Historic Mine Site.

Building located within St. Joe Park and was used in the processing of iron ore.
A conifer located in Hughes Mountain Natural Area near Irondale, MO.
Cedar tree located in Hughes Mountain Natural Area that has seen better days.
The view on Hughes Mountain.

I recently was able to take a hike on the Hughes Mountain Natural Area trail. The trail is rated moderate is an out-and-back trail, 1.6 miles long.

I decided to be creative.
Some more of my creativity.

I hope you enjoyed my photos. Any opinions would be greatly appreciated. Color or black and white?

More to A Photo

Storm moving in

Pictures can only show what is happening. Being void of sound and smell it leaves the viewer to their own imagination to fill in the rest.

How about you? When you look at a photo do you stop there or do you imagine more?

When you look at the above photo do you imagine the sound of thunder in the distance? Can you feel the breeze from the storm and smell the coming rain in the air? Can you hear the wind in the trees?

I am one who try’s to add another element to the photo that the photographer can’t. It adds a new dimension and can even add to the excitement of the photo.

It would be interesting to hear what others think.

Fracture Art

Looking for a different way than traditional prints, framed and hung on the wall to display your photographs? Fracture art does just that. It takes your digital images and prints them directly onto glass, turning the print into a frame.

The photograph above doesn’t really do the Fracture print justice. It’s amazing how it makes the colors pop out. It seems quite pricey but you don’t have the cost of a matte and frame and the time it takes to frame them.

A medium, 7.2”x 9.6” will set you back $50 and a classic 10.8” x 14.4” will set you back $80. I have done a couple this way and I love it.

The Power of an Apology

St Francis River

It seems that people have forgot about how powerful an apology can be. A sincere apology that is. If you have done something wrong and lost someone’s trust an apology is a great way to begin restoring the trust you have lost.

I think one reason people don’t apologize is because they never accept the fact they did something to break that trust. They are in complete denial of doing anything wrong to cause the mistrust. “I didn’t do that.” “ You just don’t understand.” Common answers that are given.

Until the guilty party steps up and admits they did it, then apologizes, the relationship is in jeopardy. How can anybody trust them again if they aren’t willing to apologize for the wrong they did? That’s when the hurt party has to decide if the relationship is worth saving.

Accept responsibility for your actions and then apologize for hurting them.

Taken For Granted

Abandoned building at the Missouri Historic Mine Site

I have seen so many times, a relationship destroyed because someone took the other person for granted. It happens far too often. Couples become complacent in their relationship, and someone takes the other for granted. I think it happens so gradual they don’t even realize they are doing it. I don’t think the guilty party really knows it until the damage is done.

Can the damage be repaired? In my opinion it is totally up to the guilty party. They have to acknowledge the wrong they did and accept responsibility. Too many times they are in denial. “I didn’t do that”, “You are being ridiculous.”, “It’s your imagination.”, etc… One will never fix the wrong and make it right if they don’t admit they screwed up. lt takes a big person to admit they did wrong but with some work the relationship might be able to be saved. At least an effort is being made to right the wrong. It is going to take hard work, but the reward is well worth the effort.

Identify the problem, take responsibility and commit to repairing the damage done.

The information contained in this blog is strictly my opinion and observations. I have no degree and I am no professional. It is just a collection of my thoughts.

Importance of Trust

Trust is the glue of life. It’s the most essential ingredient in effective communication. It’s the foundational principle that holds all relationships.”Stephen Covey

Trust is as critical to a relationship as the blood that courses through our body giving us life. Relationships are built on trust. It is only as strong as the trust it was built on. It takes time to build trust yet it can be destroyed in a blink of an eye. Two of the biggest causes are cheating and lying. The best way to preserve trust is to not give a reason to be mistrusted. When we give a reason the seed of doubt is planted in our minds where it festers and infects our minds until it totally destroys the trust that had been built. Once that trust is broke it is hard to get back and if you do it is never as strong as the original trust. So many people seem to take trust for granted putting their relationship in jeopardy. Trust shouldn’t be taken lightly. If one values their relationship they should be careful to not leave any room for doubt to destroy it.

Get Excited

Trail In Silver Mines Conservation Area

“When people look at my pictures I want them to feel the way they do when they want to read a line of a poem twice.”

Robert Frank

When someone reads a line twice it usually means that something about that line excites them and grabs their attention. Purchasers of artwork do so because something about it excited them. Photography is no different. The photographer has to make the photo exciting to catch the viewers’ attention. They have to be passionate and excited about what they are going to capture through their camera. If the photographer isn’t excited about their composition, it is hard to expect the viewer to be excited. To be a good photographer one should not overlook the power of excitement.

True Friendship; a Gift

There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship.”

Thomas Aquinas

There are those friends who only are around when things are good. I refer to them as fair weather friends. Then there are those who are there to share in our windfalls and when that is gone so are they.

Then there are those that are there during the rough times to help you through. I refer to them as the roughneck friends.

A true friend is one that accepts you for who you are even if you have a difference of opinions on some things. It’s hard to find two people who agree with each other 100% of the time. That shouldn’t have an affect on a friendship. True friends inspire one another. They help you find the light at the end of the tunnel when you thought all was lost. They are the ones on the other end of the phone at 3 a.m. who you called just because you needed to talk to someone. They instill confidence within us. They are good listeners and they are there to support us. They overlook our failures and share in our successes. They rekindle our inner spirit. True friendship is the greatest gift of life.

The Curse of Opinions

“Everyone has his or her own opinion and I welcome criticism. That’s why we have freedom of expression and that’s also what I stand for – but I won’t stand for insults.” – Ilkay Gundogan

Talk to the hand because the ears aren’t listening. This seems to be the mantra of today’s society. There use to be a time in this country when two people of different opinions could partake of a little spirited debate and walk away still friends. Not so much anymore. No such thing as peaceful debate. Instead insults and juvenile name calling is more the norm.

Everyone is different. We all have different likes and dislikes. Some people like summer some like winter. There are those that prefer more government and those that prefer less. They are opinions based upon a person’s thoughts and life experiences. It doesn’t mean one is right and one is wrong.

The reality is everyone is going to have a difference of opinion. It’s a given and we as a society need to learn to accept it, learn to live with it and move on. We have to learn to agree to disagree.

“The only sin that we never forgive is a difference of opinions.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

I watch with great sadness as friends and family turn their backs on each other because of their differences of opinions. I myself have been called stupid, ignorant, moron etc. because my opinion is different than theirs.

I won’t apologize for my opinions nor do I expect you to apologize for yours. I am entitled to my opinion and you yours.

I am not responsible for your happiness. I am only responsible for mine. What I am responsible for is to be kind to you and to respect your opinions. No insults or name calling and to love you as I love myself.

It is time for us to stop, take a deep breath, think about what we are doing and fix it. To bury our differences, embrace each other and seek harmony. We need to eliminate the hate that is running rampant in our society. Can it be done? I don’t know but I do know the world would be a much better place and certainly worth the effort.