More Rain

Stephen Fisher Photography, Texas Photo Ranch, Sunrise, LandscapeOK…So when is enough…enough? I woke this morning to a familiar sound lately. It’s raining here again…hard! Having said that, I’m not going back on my promise to NEVER complain about rain again. Years of drought conditions have left Texas still needing more of the stuff…

I made the most of the “free time” I had yesterday because of the weather to get caught up on some studio and personal projects. I’m in the process of building a bunch of new 11×14 matted prints to take to the galleries. I send my files to Miller’s Lab and have them make the 8×10 prints. Next I hinge mount them to an 11×14 mat and place foam core on the back. They get hand signed and named on the front bottom of  the mat. Then I drop it in a clear plastic sleeve. It’s a pretty labor intensive process. I even spent some time in the studio getting organized and catching up on correspondence.

Since it looks like this morning is a wash out, I think I’ll give all my gear a good cleaning.  My gear gets used…and used hard. It seems like everything always has a coating of dust on it. And maybe if I get REAL energetic this morning I’ll organize the back of my Jeep. It got washed yesterday…went from brown back to black! We’ll see what happens…

 

 

 

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Back In The Zone

Stephen Fisher Photography, Texas Photo Ranch, Redheads, WaterfowlSo…Things were getting a little hectic there for a while! I’ve had a lot of distractors to my photography over the last couple of months. But now, I feel like I’m back on track. I hate it when “life” gets in the way of what I want to do…

Having some decent weather has helped a LOT. That long stretch of cold and rainy days was tough. It looks like spring will finally get here…maybe it’s already here. Sometimes in Texas spring is a day or two between winter and summer. I can do hot a LOT better than cold…

The Houston house is coming along just fine. After months of trying to find a painting contractor, we finally succeeded! These guys are real pros, and the old 90+ year old Heights house is looking good. The exterior is almost finished, and they’ll start on the inside right away. Our realtor met with Sharon yesterday and loved the progress!

My situation with the “unnamed three-letter starting with an I federal agency” is coming to a close…I hope! I’ve collected EVERYTHING they’ve requested, and it’s looking even better for me. One more meeting at the end of this month and I hope this will just be a bad memory.

So why am I boring everyone to death with this mundane personal stuff? I have a life in addition to trying to make meaningful photographs most days…and it directly affects my art. Sometimes it affects it in a good way. and sometimes it doesn’t. Some of these things I can control…others I just have to manage. Just like you…

 

 

 

 

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That Felt Good

Stephen Fisher Photographer, Texas Photo Ranch, Black Crested TitmouseOK…It was so good to get back to work yesterday!

Yesterday was almost perfect for me…a little bit of everything. Wade and I took care of a few chores at the Texas Photo Ranch. That included pulling the ranch truck out of the mud with one of the tractors. We also made sure all of the feeders were full. Later in the afternoon we jumped in one of the John Deere Gators and toured most of the ranch. It’s so good to see the resaca full of water!

I set my pop-up blind up at the Cactus Blind yesterday afternoon. It felt great to get behind the camera again and shoot some birds.The Cardinals, Blackbirds, and Titmice were very active and readily coming in to my setup. Nothing great…but a lot of fun working the gear!

I really like making photographs of titmice. These little dynamos seem to have so much character. You’d better be fast to catch these guys sitting still…

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Here We Go…

Stephen Fisher Photography, Rockport TX, Aransas Bay, Sunrise, It’s Monday…and this is going to be a BUSY week!

I have an appointment here in Rockport this morning, and then it’s back up to Houston for a couple of days. While this rain is keeping me from getting out on the ranch to shoot, it is allowing me to catch up on everything else needing some attention.

I’ll be back down here probably on Wednesday. I spent a big part of the weekend building some new 11×14 matted prints. I need to get over to the Treehouse Art Collective in Corpus Christi and get them delivered. My print bin there is getting low…a nice problem!

It looks like the next decent weather window starts on Thursday and runs through the weekend. I’ll be ready when Mother Nature decides we need a break from the rain…

This is an image of Aransas Bay just off Water Street. It’s captures that special time before dawn when you can see both night and day in the sky…

 

 

 

 

 

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Exchange Day

Stephen Fisher Photography, Rockport Beach, Rockport TX, Beach, PalapaToday is exchange day at the Rockport Center for the Arts.

Every month members are allowed to have one piece of art hang in the Member’s Gallery. Since Rockport has such an active art community, there are usually some VERY nice pieces on exhibit every month. You’re also allowed to price your piece and have it for sale to the public.

This afternoon I’ll be taking “Find Your Beach” to the RCA. This is an image I made at Rockport Beach a few months ago. It certainly wasn’t one of those spectacular “Rockport sunrises”, but it conveys the peaceful vibe of being at the beach. I have it printed on canvas in a 16×32 size.

Whenever your in Rockport, stop by the Rockport Center for the Arts are take a look…

 

 

 

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Moving On

Stephen Fisher Photography, Green Jay, Texas Photo Ranch, Refugio TXI didn’t make it out of Houston yesterday. With everything thats been going on, I had some loose ends to clean up. But today, I’m heading for Rockport…

Weather-wise, it looks like I can squeeze in a couple days of shooting. Not even considering the HUGE need I have to get some keepers for the Wildlife In Focus Photo Contest, I just need some time on the Texas Photo Ranch with my camera gear.

Cheaper than therapy…

 

 

 

 

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That Was Fun…And It’s Not Over

Stephen Fisher Photography, American White Pelican, Rockport TXOK…This blog entry is a little different. As a rule, I don’t get too much into my personal life here. I try to keep this about my photography. But it’s hard to separate them sometimes. Actually this IS about my photography! The business side…

I’m a professional photographer…it’s what I do. It feels like I commit 110% of my time trying to make meaningful art and building the Stephen Fisher Photography brand. It’s hard. It’s competitive. But this is what I do…EVERYDAY!

I’ve been somewhat distracted the last three weeks or so after I got THE letter! My CPA and I have spent a LOT of time prepping for an IRS audit that happened yesterday morning downtown Houston. I keep good records for my business, and he’s a conservative guy who does things by the book. But still…getting that letter was a bummer!

Long story short…we’re not done. The initial meeting went fine. The Examining Officer was both very professional and cordial. We presented a bunch of documentation…but more is being requested. We’ll be back there at the end of this month for another…and hopefully final meeting.

Neither my CPA or I am worried about the outcome of this audit. It’s just the process that makes things uncomfortable. We’ll pull together the additional requested documents and present them. I’m confident that this will be the end of this saga…

So now I’m refocusing on the CREATIVE side of my photography. The weather hasn’t been great, so I don’t feel as if I missed a lot of shooting days. It’ll be good to get things back to normal…whatever normal is…

 

 

 

 

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Walk In The Woods

Stephen Fisher Photography, Texas Photo Ranch, Green Jay“Life” has been a distraction to my photography lately. Nothing serious…just a LOT of balls in the air right now!

I won’t bore everyone to death with the details of EVERYTHING going on because they’re all petty. No health issues…no personal issues…nothing even close to being life changing! Just busy “stuff” that keeps me from doing what I want to do. Actually they were keeping me from enjoying all of the blessings I have…

So I drove over to the Texas Photo Ranch to do some chores. It was GOOD for me! It was cold and extremely windy yesterday…certainly no opportunities for making contest quality images. But…the birds and mammals still need to be fed.

I checked all of the bird feeders at the Coon and Cactus blinds first. The feeders were still about half full, but we don’t want to risk them getting empty. The birds really need this easily attainable food source right now. Lots of bird activity at both of these feeders yesterday…

I then drove down to the resaca. The new Resaca Blind is as far back on the Texas Photo Ranch as you can go. The woods are very thick here with old Live Oaks surrounded by all kinds of lesser species. We’re actually starting to wear a trail through the woods down to the blind and feeders.

I was walking the trail carrying a 5 gallon pail of seed and it hit me. Why was I letting these issues distract me? Why not just take a day or so and get them all out of the way? I sat down on a log and figured it all out..

A walk in the woods did wonders for me yesterday…

 

 

 

 

Posted in Photography

Patience Grasshopper

Stephen Fisher Photography, Texas Photo Ranch, Wildlife In Focus, Green JayThis weather is making me rethink a lot of things about my photography in general…and the Wildlife In Focus Photo Contest in particular.

I was hoping the Law of Large Numbers would work in my favor. The more times I’m out on the Texas Photo Ranch shooting…the better my chances of getting more contest-quality images. That made good sense to me, and I was more than willing and able to do that! Now…I’m thinking it’s time to reconsider.

There’s still PLENTY of time for me to generate a portfolio of 100 images to submit. We’re just a little over a month into this, and I do have some “keepers”. I wish I had more of course. But I’m very thankful for what I already have…VERY thankful! I’m still planning to get out on the ranch as often as possible…but maybe now with a little more purpose and focus (no pun intended!).

I’ve been reviewing some of my older images for ideas on set-ups that have worked for me in the past. The judges are POSITIVELY going to be looking for things different and unique.  Thats pretty hard to do. The folks that do well will be those that find that “something something” the judges haven’t already seen thousands of times. I need to find that…

(This is a Green Jay I photographed at the Texas Photo Ranch last year. I’ve always liked this shot, and taking another look at it last night provided me with an idea I want to try. Hope it works…)

 

 

 

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Back And Forth

Stephen Fisher Photography, Texas Photo Ranch, Cowboys, Horses, Round up, CattleI’m juggling a LOT of balls right now! Strangely enough, everything feels relatively manageable…

The weather continues to negatively impact optimal shooting conditions at the Texas Photo Ranch. That doesn’t mean that there are NO opportunities for making contest-quality images, it’s just MUCH harder. All of these fronts passing through the Coastal Bend and the associated wind has kept a lot of the birds hunkered down. The good thing is that these conditions are effecting most of South Texas, so most of the other competitors are also dealing with this.

After checking/filling all of the feeders yesterday at the ranch, I drove back up to Houston. Progress is being made on getting this old Houston Heights house ready to put on the market. It’s been power washed and a lot of the caulking has been completed. It looks better already…and it hasn’t been painted yet! The same conditions that keep me from shooting is also keeping the painters from working.

So for today I’m going to tackle the garage! Pretty exciting task for a nature photographer…right? It’s one of those things that HAS to get done, so today I’ll give it some love. I hope I come out of this project unscathed…

This is an image I like a BUNCH! Unfortunately…it’s another roof my JPEG fiasco, so it’s not going to work for the Wildlife In Focus competition. This was made during the recent cattle round up. The sky really caught my eye. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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