End of 2018

It’s getting close to the end of this year. As I’m writing this, I have hardly slept and spent a few nights laying in bed wondering and thinking to myself. I have slowed down in writing my thoughts in my blog in this latter half because I haven’t been too well since my doctor passed away. I am still hoping I will get the help I need before it’s too late. I just have to practice and find a balance to everything which I hope can help me away from my malaise.

I haven’t picked up my camera in the past month. Starting to feel bad about it since I haven’t taken a lot of photos. Looking through it’s viewfinder, I miss how it feels and the joy it use to make me feel. Perhaps around Christmas or after Boxing Day I’ll take up photography again. The most difficult part right now is keeping up with work.

Getting a seasonal gig with my former employer is great, despite all the pain I went through last year. I hope eventually it will turn into a part time job considering the first time I felt fairly qualified to work more than a sales associate, assistant manager perhaps? Regardless I’m glad and I get to see all the people I’ve met before, though I have forgotten most of their names.

As what I hope to be the second last post of the year I guess I should try and make a list of all I have accomplished this year. As per my doctor’s last recommendation, I’m starting to look into a lot of cognitive therapy to cope. So…accomplishments:

  • Went to Niagara Falls for the first time In January it’s still beautiful despite the cold, icy, wet weather. I wish I spent more time.
  • Surpassed 300 photos on 500px. Also surpassed 10, 000 shots on my first DSLR camera.
  • Bought a new laptop. For now I have two but eventually I will have one once I feel comfortable enough to part this old thing I found in the trash. You have served me well.
  • New toys! Bought two used lenses, one (almost) brand new lens, and a used camera body. Overall I paid market price after having them professionally cleaned.
  • More recent, started to look into sleep meditation and actively managing my depression. The ADHD behaviors I can accept but the feeling sad stuff needs a lot of attention.
  • Enjoyed a long lost hobby, reading! I’m nowhere near attentive for novels but I’ll accept a good narrative after playing Life is Strange and Life is Strange: Before the Storm. Which reminds me, I should preorder the comic book.
  • Finished Fallout 4. Now I can move on to other games. Hopefully that gaming list shrinks quickly.
  • Paramore!! Second time I saw them live. Still great but I connected more with their previous album.
  • Getting on the dating scene? A bit embarrassing but I can own up to it. Been on way more dates than the last 4 years combined. No winners…yet.
  • A year without Star Trek Online. I haven’t logged in for so long. I think I can finally move on since the Kelvin timeline and Discovery kind of gave me a sour taste for it.
  • Nuit Blanche art event. Spent the entire night checking out all the arts and culture. Last year was way too political. Still very crowded if not worse.
  • Bought CD’s. An old medium but once I get a portable disc player, I’m going to have fun.
  • I got Instagram to share some photos.
  • I got business cards, I wish I could add my Instagram on them. They came first.

Still more to come in the last few weeks. My plans are to buy the SNES Classic and maybe the NES. I’m thinking of another Niagara trip either Niagara-On-The-Lake or somewhere small. I still want to snap photos and hopefully punch through to 400 on 500px. Lastly…

…I want to write my final post for the year. Stay tuned!

Advertisements

I’m Ready For It

The past week has been busy and recently I haven’t kept on top of the blog. However it doesn’t mean I’ve been idle.

Like last year, I’ve committed more time looking for another part-time job. There is a few potential employers I’m in talks with, hopefully I can gainfully be employed despite the political quagmire in my locale. Ever since I’ve added my photography hobby, I’ve been more curious about how to go about marketing that to employers. Meanwhile I did get a small gig working as a consultant with all I know about photography. It was fairly impromptu but I helped a few, though their photographer was a but stubborn at the young whippersnapper trying to tell him what to do. I would’ve happily photographed their products but they’re a big stringent and uncontrollable on site. There is little to no budget for photography yet they ask their employees to do a lot with nothing. Definitely contracting my services in the future would be more suitable for me.

After a few weeks, I’ve finally taken my new camera in for repair. The smudges (and apparently scratches) annoyed me where I finally want it cleaned. When I first bought it it didn’t come with a body cap to protect the sensor so I used mine. Little did I know, they placed it in a dusty box. From all the trouble I went through, I could’ve bought a new Canon T6i for same price and I would’ve gotten another kit lens. Defeated, I’ll take it for now. Also recently I acquired a 300mm telephoto which isn’t as sharp as I thought at 300mm so I’ve traded for a 24mm prime lens. So my collection grows in it’s own weird way.

Also since the I was told Adventure Time was ending, I’ve been trying to download the entire series to binge watch. Right now I’m in season 3 of 9, getting where I kind of stopped. I missed the show since it has that subtle adult content with a Saturday morning cartoon feel. I can’t wait for the winter since Star Trek Discovery is coming back after having a mixed first season. The Expanse is coming back at some point which I’m ready.

Looking forward since I’m playing Hitman on Steam, I’m thinking of upgrading my PC. Ten years on, she’s prime for a hardware upgrade. Motherboard, CPU and RAM. Though I think she has a few more years ahead, I need her as future proof as I made her at first. This time around, I might order through Amazon since the computer stores around here are usually sold out. I’m not sure when I’ll make those purchases but it will be as a bulk purchase.

A couple months, I just hope I can do it all. I’m a procrastinator so it might happen. We’ll see.

I have to stop…

The past month, I have been engulfed in the obsession with auction houses. It hasn’t gotten into online yet but I’ve been bidding on surplus equipment and items from local police departments and authorities.

So far this month, I’ve spent about $1000 on everything. A bit (if not a lot) than I expected but the savings have been either marginal or really good. Despite being cosmetically damaged or “battery life/stamina is unknown”, I fear there might be some other defects. Something defective that the employees at the auction house won’t inspect for; big example being the lens and camera body I bought. I bought a Canon 50mm and a T6i for well under the cost of even used, but on close inspection there are some imperfections. For a camera system, these imperfections are borderline close to damaged. A smudge on the reflex mirror or a hairline scratch on the lens, these would annoy me especially if it’s noticeable in the image or on the viewfinder. As satisfied as I am with them, I feel scared at the fact that I have little to no idea how the quality by just a few images and testimony from the auctioneer.

At least now I have the opportunity to get a replacement iPod Shuffle. Mine’s water damaged but at least I can have one that works with superficial damage. But that’s what’s been going on with me this past month so far.

Off to Auction.

Recently I’ve received a new debit card, replacing the old one with a degrading chip. Of course my bank went through the whole dog and pony show. Of course now I have a bit of money so I think I can start buying a few things online.

After a bit of online browsing, I found a small site that auctions odds and ends from tools to electronics and clothing to miscellany. Thus far, I haven’t won anything. Luck of the auction I guess, but I’m starting to consider to auction snipe. At the last minute, I should just place a bid just to win it. Guess it’s one thing about online auctions, anyone can bid on anything and just force people to bid higher until no one can pay for it. So it’s just smarter to bid at the last minute.

I’ve been looking through Amazon as well. So I might buy a few things on there if there is something I want and it’s a better sale there than locally. I doubt it with shipping cost, but I’m hopefully I might find things I might need or would use.

It’s getting close to the end of summer and I’ve been prolifically taking photos. With Instagram now, I’m really picking stuff I want to share. Which is tough since there is much I want to reserve to try and license. As of yet, 500px has yet yielded a single purchase from me. So I have uploaded a lot with nothing to show, but I don’t want to give up yet.

I’ll work on it. For now, just take photos.

Insta-ntly Persuaded

Well, add more account I have to maintain. For now anyways.

This year has been the year where people keep asking me “When are you going to get Instagram?” Haunted, I might as well do it and give it a shot. Then if anyone starts copying my content, I might just delete it and let it be.

I’ve held off getting an account because I have an invested interested in my talents. I like my work but I don’t want to work in an contractual confines that would stop me from developing. In this case I would have create photos on a smaller scale, closer to cell phone screen size when I have over 3000 pixels to work with. On a screen like an iPhone, details aren’t distinct and broad shapes and colours are the only thing that captivates. Until 500px which I’ve done well for myself, I liked to create confines to challenge. An example is choosing 7 photos a week for the 500px website. It doesn’t feel like it’s a popularity contest where the best looking or the best trend wins the day. Thus why I feel Snapchat and Instagram feel more like social media platforms than a pedestal to put my work out there. Everything is temporary unless it’s exhilarating to the mass body. For me, it’s no different than Twitter besides being a visually centred social media platform.

Also it’s an entirely mobile platform! As a camera user, I can’t do anything about that besides taking photos of photos. Of course, there’s a round about way in Chrome to use it on PC. However I can’t upload from my PC but I can view. Really discourages anyone but a cellphone to use a platform like that.

Artistically when you want to make money, you have to sell something about you to really open it up to the world. This isn’t something I approve but I am trying to build my amateur skill to a professional level.

Even if putting @nawkcire on Instagram and saying it’s moving forward.

 

Need To Make It Rain

The past winter, I bought 500 business cards. With my name and a web address to my 500px account. In hindsight, sometimes impulse purchases isn’t the best way to get business cards.

When I first bought this batch was because I saw the 50% off deal on Vistaprint. Great deal at the time considering it’s 500 cards. I made a very simplistic card, white lettering on black – no designs and a straightforward style.

When they arrived, they come in boxes of 250. Well right now I’ve managed to give out about  20-30 of the 500. Since the last purchase, the place has been having the 50% business card sales all the time. So looking back on it, I could’ve spent more time designing a card to be more appealing.

Speaking of business, I was invited to a business seminar. It was a mixed bag of thoughts. Firstly, the entire  seminar was highly focused on getting people into a business to sell products. Something I’ve had some recent experience with, however it just sounded very remotely a bit of a scheme to brainwash people. When I was accepted the invitation, I thought “I could give away at least a hundred of these bad boys.” I arrived with 50 and only gave two and one to a friend of a friend. It’s unfortunate but these folks seemed a bit high brow and disillusioned. I think I’ve tried networking at a seminar and now I just have to dial in where to distribute and market myself.

I do feel semi-serious about starting a photography job. However in a city of millions, it’s tough to compete with someone well established. However I’m not in it in win it all, I just want to at least make it to be independent. Just taking it one job at a time.

More travelling?

So mid-June now, probably put aside to a lot of game time and been buckling down. Mostly for photography in nature, but at the moment I’m still planning. “Still planning” is a term I really dislike because I’m starting to feel more indecisive. I recently took a trip to a local tourism office to really find somewhere to take my camera. Somewhere local and old school, with a bit of historic and artistic value and vistas. Also everything has to close to the hotel room as well.

In-province, I’m thinking of a small town. I went to Niagara Falls this spring and it was a great. So it’s just a matter of finding the place that’s worth taking a shot and perhaps something less seen by other. Niagara Falls has been a tourist trap for ages but I really knew the beauty of the place when you leave the casino area. Really see what Niagara Fall really is when you take away the neon lights. If I can’t replicate the success of that trip, I’m going to exceed it. I want have extraordinary photos and memorable moments.

For the time being, I’ll just be window shopping for a nice place to visit. Hopefully before the end of summer.