Thursday, May 7, 2009

Some SoFoBoMo Thoughts

(Click on the thumbnail for the bigger, better version)

My recent projects have taken on a life of their own. News of another show coming up June 5th meant a new postcard for publicity. In the next couple of days, I have to have copies of a flyer for a first-time equine event in Tehachapi. The Husband and I want to attend the event and offer support to a young woman who has taken over an equestrian center and stable and has great ambitions. The Husband is particularly interested in the event, since there will be exhibits and clinics. We hope to learn some things and mostly get to know more horse people in “The Greater Tehachapi Area”. That sounds like a rather large area and lots of people, right? Well, it is a large in terms of square miles, but the population is spread blessedly thin. However, there are a fair number of horse owners in all these small communities, and we are both interested in meeting more of those folks.

Between preparing for events such as the equine affair and working on new prints along with some framing chores, I haven’t been able to concentrate on SoFoBoMo. Last year, I was tempted to drop out after I signed up, because I was so intimidated by the people participating and I was nervous about completing my book. It turned out to be an invaluable experience, and I will be eternally grateful that I persisted despite the anxieties. (If you are worried about committing, or you have signed up and you are getting nervous about the venture, take a breath and plunge in. I promise you, you won’t regret it.) In contrast, I wouldn’t miss the fun this year for anything. Indeed, I had looked forward to it for months. Ironically, I now find myself so swamped that I can’t think straight and couldn’t begin on May 1, after all.

I have done only the most minimal kind of planning for my thirty-five photographs in e-book form. But, I have made a few tentative decidions. For example,
I have, at least, given some thought to location. A couple of weeks ago, I investigated a horse trail near us that winds through a canyon and is rich with trees, rocks, plant life, and a tiny rivulet of water that may last through June (so I have heard). So far, when it comes to where to shoot, Oak Canyon is ahead in the running. The sign pictured above, however, means that I will be looking for a companion when I go down there to shoot.

Unlike several SoFoBoMo participants, I am not planning to limit myself in terms of lenses. I will likely be shooting with my favorite walkaround lens, the 24-105mm, plus the 100mm macro, and maybe even "Big Bertha", the 70-100mm f2.8.

Especially with all the unexpected projects that have exploded, I will keep my layout and text sparse and ultra-simple. I know a number of people are looking to stretch by pushing the limits of the e-book format. I will have to settle for enjoying the results of their creative ambitions.

I know that my project will most certainly be influenced by the two shows that I have done so far, as well as the one that I am preparing for; but, currently, I couldn’t begin to articulate what that influence will be. I do know that the shows have ended up with the focus clearly on equine images, while the SoFoBoMo project will feature landscapes.


  1. First, my friend, let us talk about that sign! Yikes! I remember seeing one of those signs in a park in Big Sur, CA. Immediately, my wife said: We're not going in there! :-) So, we didn't. We stayed close to the parking lot and skipped that particular adventure. Actually, the sign was a bit more lengthy and told how little children had been attacked when they strayed off from adults, etc.

    Now, this SoFoBoMo thing. I wish that I had the excuse that you did, but this year, I seem to be sooooooo indecisive. It's quite annoying. Last year, my first year, I had it all together. I think that this year, I'm expecting bigger and deeper and it just hasn't come out yet.

    Hopefully, the books that I'm waiting for will create a bit of a spark, but if not, I know that I will be able to do 'it', whatever 'it' is. :-) At least I hope so!!!

    I think that it is fantastic that you have these types of things going on in your life. You and The Husband have found a rather cool place to live and it sounds like it fits both of you like a glove. That's very nice!

    Get yourself a gun and know how to use it! Just in case you have to scare of one of those big kitty cats! ;-) 'Cause I don't think that shootin' with the camera is going to intimidate it at all!

  2. Paul - "Yikes" pretty sums up my sentiments. No way I'm hiking down in that narrow canyon alone, and I'm not going down there really late in the evening or terribly early in the morning—even with company. It's a great area, but I suspect you are right that my camera wouldn't intimidate a hungry mountain lion. The gun sounds good, but I would probably panic and shoot myself in the foot or something.

    I'm okay going down there with someone to keep an eye on things (I get too zoned out with a camera in my hand and wouldn't know if an elephant had walked up behind me). I don't think there has been a mountain lion attack here. Still, they are definitely in the valley, and I am not interested in making the news.

  3. Better for your to make the news because of your shows! Less drama, but certainly better for you!

  4. Paul - I'd rather not be reported on in past tense, that's for sure.


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