Archive | January 29, 2013

Today’s reading

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Clearance

Seven of Wands

A time to make decisions and priorities. Focus on what you really need in your life and what it is timely to cut away. Regrowth is fertilized by the ability to utilize. …cutting down dead wood, and pruning to enable better future growth.

It is time to take action in order to clear outworn modes of behaviour from areas of your life. A clarification, a paring down of intention. The fire purifies negativity, transforming the energy.

What. The. Fuck???? So I can get married because I have to plan and really want the children I birth???

Progressive Culture | Scholars & Rogues

I … I … ummm. This is a joke, right?

Marriage should be limited to unions of a man and a woman because they alone can “produce unplanned and unintended offspring,” opponents of gay marriage have told the Supreme Court.

By contrast, when same-sex couples decide to have children, “substantial advance planning is required,” said Paul D. Clement, a lawyer for House Republicans.

Apparently no, no it is not.

Used to be teh queers couldn’t be trusted because they’d hump anything they could catch. Now they have to be restricted because … they’re responsible.

2016 is going to be a banner year for Dem candidates if the GOP keeps this up….

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Gaelic Dictionaries

Here are two Scots Gaelic Dictionaries available on Amazon. They just happen to be the best.

MacLennan is the one most people start with because it isn’t quite the doorstop Dwelly’s is:

http://www.amazon.com/Gaelic-English-English-Gaelic-Scottish-Gaelic-Malcolm-MacLennan/dp/1873644116/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1359505465&sr=8-1&keywords=Scots+Gaelic+dictionary

This one is on Amazon UK and it is the gold standard:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Illustrated-Dictionary-Specially-Beginners-Including/dp/1177752980/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1359505681&sr=8-6

If you don’t want to go online then attend your local Highland Games and if any one vends books they probably have them.

I can’t say no

I had a totally mind expanding weekend at the Pagan Studies conference. How’s that for Valley Girl Hippie speak? But it’s the truth. Every presenter had something of worth to say and I learned something. Peter Dybing is a bad influence though. He kept emphasizing volunteering . I have been a volunteer somewhere all my life so this morning when I got an invitation to be on a council wide committee I said yes. So now I’m a member of the Property Strategic Planning Task Force. Oh Dopey me! I have a meeting in March at the Montrose Scout House where my troops used to meet. At least I know how to get there.

Of all the places I have volunteered Girl Scouts will always have my heart. I’ve been a Candy Striper at a hospital for 450 hrs. I’ve been in Church Choir and School Choir. I was a camp counselor at Church Camps for many years before I got paid by the YWCA. I helped out with the Church Orphanage putting parties on for the kids. I was President of Women Students at my Junior College and we did a lot of fund raising and events with my sorority. They were all fun but I love Girl Scouts.

I’ve been a Troop Leader, a trainer, I’ve planned and executed numerable events and I was an Arts & Crafts Director at 2 camps. And I was a GS Professional as an Executive and as a Program Asst. Director. Mind you there was no Program Director at the time so I was really the Director. I also ran the Summer Day Care Center 2 summers. I’ve been to Wider Opportunities and I’ve been on the committees to put one on. And I’ve helped with Silver Trefoil events so now I seem to have gotten myself in deeper. This is going to be interesting.

Getting the shot you want

If you want to get the shots and not be noticed.

Buy a black camera – It attracts the least attention. This works in nature photography too.

Turn off the noise – just about all digital cameras and most phones have the ability to mute the sound they make. Nothing says pose like the sound of the shutter going off even if it’s a sound effect noise. Turn it off!

Be patient – wait for the shot you want.

Take more than you think you need – with film the rule was take one before or underweighted on the exposure, one where you think you want it and one overweighted or over exposed. With a digital you can forget the worry about how much film you are wasting and just shoot what you see. If you are like me and like to play with the manual settings on digital – do your metering first so you can forget it. The lighting isn’t going to change much in a closed room.

Stand back and use the zoom if you can. Nothing screams “PHOTOGRAPHER!” like getting too close. You aren’t the one that is important here. Your subject is. Lose your ego at the door.

Observe the energy in the room. Go where the most positive energy is being exchanged. Yes, Virginia, let your shields down. It will also help your be less visible. Photographing sensitive people like pagans means they can read you and your shields if you have them engaged.

If you know an invisibility spell you can use shieldless, use it.

Have an extra battery in your pocket. Some people have a bad effect on batteries. And I don’t mean dead people. One nervous live person can cause your battery to dump too.

If your camera allows it and your hands are steady enough, lose the flash. You pictures will look better and you, again, are not screaming “PHOTOGRAPHER!”. Stealth mode and no flash gets you the best pictures and it has the benefit sometimes of obscuring the background. Something that is more difficult for digital but very easy on a film camera.

If it’s a pagan event, find out who doesn’t want to be photographed ahead of time and have them stand out of your field of vision or behind you if possible. It’s much easier to shoot around someone than to have to pull out the photography program and remove them or blur them. Plus it’s just annoying to have to do.

Take many, many, many photos so you can make choices. Deleting is easy even if it’s annoying to historians. (There is a whole big discussion going on about information being lost when photos are deleted which is why I sometimes keep the slightly out of focus ones.) It can in the future validate whether someone was at an event or not.

Where dark or simple clothes. This is not about you. If you wear a loud Hawaiian shirt, it’s about your ego not your shots. Be a cool cat and wear black.

The blessings of being a photographer

The last two weekends I have been privileged to be asked to photograph events. Normally I’m a keen nature photographer and it’s one to the things I specialized in when I was studying photography but my professor thought I would be a good journalistic photographer and I have to admit I do like to do that. I used to be one of the ones he sent out when the College Newspaper yelled “Help” because I was patient enough to wait for the shot I wanted.

I never, ever, ever wanted to be a portrait photographer. I hate posed photos and it’s getting harder to get the shots I want because in this high tech age there is always some one with a camera and people have become hyper-aware of when they think they need to pose.

A good candid shot does exactly what so-called primitive people fear. It sees your soul. It doesn’t steal it but it does capture a part of that person’s spark when they are being passionate about something, when they are sharing themselves in some way or when they are trying to engage another person in some fashion. Those are the shots I love to take. When you see the real person and not the mask or the persona they are trying to project.

There is something about presenting at a conference or being ordained that strips the veneers off the person. And you would think presenting at the conference would be where the mask would come out but once they start to present their topic and it’s something close to their heart you get behind the mask. You get them. I love that moment.

I love to get people talking to each other, where you can see the energy exchange happening. That is a very intimate moment to capture and it can be a joyful moment in a way.

I like capturing the reality of people. The moment they relax and forget I’m there. The moment they become as the Velveteen Rabbit say, they become ‘Real’.