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Spring is finally in full swing, the trees are once again green and I can leave the dismal memory of the cold and snow behind me for another six months.  It's time when I hope to be able to get out more and do some more photography after beeing cooped up all winter.  I feel a bit drained for inspiration, but that's usually nothing that a walk along a city street at night can't take care of.  Far too much I think I've been focusing on more grandious scenery - skylines with magnificent skies above them, for example (The New, Metropolitan Moonlight, Water Colors, etc.).  I've forgotten in a way that some of my best work were documenting small corners of the world that other people might have forgotten (Specter in the Trees, Mandarin Midnight).  With any luck I'll have a productive and creative summer.
  • Listening to: "Holiday" - Green Day
Labor Day means that summer is over, and this was probably the longest of my life.  UB ended classes on April 29th this year and didn't start until August 30, so my summer was almost four complete months long.  Oddly enough this seemed like a very unproductive summer, working my days away at OfficeMax and making plans for things to do in the fall, including moving yet again.  It most certainly was not restful.

As many of my watchers no doubt have noticed, I've posted very little work over the summer.  Truth by told, my energy level has been quite low lately and I'm running out of ideas that feel new or inventive (at least for me).  I know I shouldn't try to reinvent the wheel with every single photograph but at the same time I don't necessarily like revisiting old styles.  I photograph as I see inspiration, in the case of tonight, as I walked through my living room and saw the lights play on the walls and I decided to take and post the shot "Night Lights."  I'd rather post infrequently than upload work I'm not pleased with or feel is lacking.

As time goes on I should get another burst, especially as fall comes, and my posting will become more frequent.  It's a matter of time, motivation and inspiration.  I feel like I'm fading out from DA, but I doubt I'll ever completely disappear.
  • Listening to: "Love Comes Again" - Tiesto f/ BT
So I was in Phoenix to see my sister.  Once there my stuffy nose became dry as the desert around me for the five days I stayed.  I had to moisten a Q-Tip and swap out my nostrils so I could breathe easier.  Now I'm back in New York and my nose is clogged again.  I need relief!
  • Listening to: Blondie - "Good Boys"
  • Watching: Shrek 2
My twenty first birthday came and went on April 6.  In many ways I feel a bit different now, clutching a drivers license that lacks the words "UNDER 21" emblazoned in big letters by my poofy haired portrait of years past.

I went out at 11 or so the night prior, easily getting into a bar that never ID's me (there are some advantages to looking 5 years older than you are).  By midnight I'd had enough to drink that I was working a healthy buzz when friends began to come up to me and shout "Happy birthday!"  The bartenders knew I was underage anyways, but they didn't care.  This is Buffalo, we have an eternal love affair with the bottle, hence why our bars are open until 4am with a push to get it to be 6.

It didn't hit me until I was sipping an Alabama Slammer in a swanky urban restaurant with my parents on my birthday dinner that part of the thrill of alcohol was gone.  There was a certain excitement in knowing that what I was doing is illegal.  I felt a sense of triumph every time my chalked ID worked on a nightclub bouncer.  I felt clever and evil every time it failed and I slipped into the bathroom with old wristbands, a roll of scotch tape and some pumice stone to remove the black X's from my hands and replace them with a wristband from previous nights that served as a gateway to a forbidden world.  It's no longer rebellion.

That sense of thrill is gone as I hand bouncers my legal ID.  I no longer wander past the alcohol displays in supermarkets with the desire to purchase something solely because I couldn't before.  Whip out the ID and swipe the credit card and I'm out the door with a case of Smirnoff Ice.

This year is the last year I'll be "young."  In just a few short birthdays I'll have gone from a wild (okay perhaps that's an exaggeration) college student at one of the top 10 party schools in the country (State University of NY at Buffalo) to a young professional, out on his own and expected to be mature.  I am an adult now, shedding off the skin of my youth.  But hey, it's 10:30 on a Wednesday night (one of the bigger going out nights in Buffalo) and the bottle, as well as my friends, are calling to me.  Eh, I might have shed my youth, and the thrill of doing something forbidden may be gone, but I'm still going to have a hell of a time from here on out.

Responsibly of course.  DON'T DRINK AND DRIVE!
Around this time last year (okay it was about a month prior) I bit the bullet and signed up for this website.  I'd been coming here often, mostly to snag wallpapers.  Then I saw one photograph that really got to me, and I joined just so I could comment on it.  It was… "Lost In A Crowd" by ~hordel.  After that I began posting my own work, starting mostly with abstract shots I'd taken of the various odd lights in my dorm room (when my parents couldn't think of what to get me for an occasion it wound up being a decorative light from Spencer's).

In the last year I've submitted nearly 150 works to this site for peer review.  Some were smashing successes, some were bitter failures.  A meager 1600 page hits thus far could be attributed more to my lack of consistent interaction with others than anything else... or just the fact that it's hard to get noticed on DA without boobs. :)  But my hit count does not represent how I feel as an artist, and as an artist I feel I've grown considerably.  My tools have improved, no doubt, mostly due to my purchase of a PowerShot G3 camera that finally gave me precise exposure controls over my finicky, low quality Nikon.  Yet I also feel I've begun to flesh out my own idea of a style; the way I play with light, the angles I use, etc.  I recall an incident where a hotel owner who'd seen my work and let me on his roof to take a recent photograph said he'd shown my photos to some friends in England who thought they were amazing, and proclaimed that I had my own style.  Maybe they're right, maybe not.  Either way I do feel more comfortable looking at certain situations and using my camera to capture them in particular ways.  Perhaps that is a style.  Who knows.

Talk about a style seems so constricting, however.  I'd like to think I'm more than just a one trick pony when it comes to photography.  In the next year I would like to venture into the art of portrait photography, something I've already begun dabbling in with myself as a model.  People are a different ball game than still life objects, but I'd like to think I'm up to the challenge.  I encourage anyone who reads this to stop back in a year and see how I've done.
I suppose it was only a matter of time, living in a very windy city and always taking shots off my roof.  Unfortunately, my Canon PowerShot G3, just purchased in June, took a nasty fall when the tripod was knocked over by a gust of wind.  It's non-functional at this time.  Whether it's cheaper to repair it or buy a new one remains to be seen, depending on how much Canon wants to fix it.  Either way it puts me out of commission for up to 3 weeks :( :( :(  If anyone wants to help, buy a print or two from my newly opened prints account.  I don't get that much from each print but every little bit would help me in my current situation.
I was originally going to write my first journal entry when my page hit 1000, but that passed without any special occasion so I decided to use this as my first entry instead.  One of my photographs is being published in a matter of speaking, something that I have to say makes me feel very honored.  The State University of New York College at Brockport, located in suburban Rochester, wants to use my photograph Water Colors, which shows the Rochester, NY skyline at night, in their promotional material advertising the campus and the region it sits in.  

Admittedly it was because my father is a photographer for the college that he was able to show the photograph to people in the graphics design department, but the fact that so many professionals liked the shot enough to decide to replace their current shot (a very beautiful professionally done shot that's only downfall is that it's very old and the skyline looks different) with the one that I did makes me feel unbelievably honored.  I've been informed that in current drafts of campus brochures, my name is credited below the picture.  Some of my friends have asked if i'm getting compensation for using the shot.  I told them my name being on that photo credit is all the compensation I could ask for.