Thursday, December 24, 2009

Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays!
I'm off to the Pelee area to spend a few days visiting family, but thought I'd sneak in a quick blog post before hitting the road.

I haven't been out shooting much in the past couple of weeks, which explains the lack of blog posts. Here's an update on what I've been up to.

The hard-drive on my main computer failed a couple of weeks ago and getting that problem solved has been a huge pain. I didn't lose any photos..... they're all backed up in triple redundancy (including off-site copies) but the process of getting the problem diagnosed, ordering a new drive and reinstalling all of my programs and files has been very time consuming. It's all the more challenging when you live in a small, remote town and the nearest computer shop is an hour and a half away!

This caused a backlog of photo submissions, which I'm now just about caught up on. For all of those aspiring photographers out there who romanticize about what it's like to be a freelance photographer, the reality is that it's a heck of a lot of time at a computer!

OK, I'll confess that it hasn't been all work lately..... winter is the time of year when I socialize more, catch up on movies and chill out.... all of which I have done plenty of lately! After travelling/living in a van all of last year, I've been catching up on lots of movies. Last week I saw the mega-budget movie "Avatar". I liked the special effect, but it went way overboard in terms of action sequences. Last night I rented "The Cove", a documentary about the slaughter of dolphins in Taiji, Japan. This is one of the most remarkable films I've ever seen.... beautifully filmed and produced, with a powerful and provocative message. I highly suggest watching this film.... two thumbs up from me.

On another note, you might wonder what a guy like me gets for Christmas. My Mom bought me a set of Pocket Wizards.... an FM wireless system for triggering cameras and flashes remotely. It's an awesome gift that I'll put to very good use with some creative wildlife photography! And I couldn't pass up a good deal on a pair of Swarovski binoculars for myself.... there's nothing wrong with spoiling yourself sometimes!

The most exciting news I have to share is that I'm heading to Panama next month for a bird photography trip. I've heard only great things about Panama's birdlife, wildlife and scenery, so the trip planning is fun and I can't wait to get down there!

Well that's enough rambling on..... eggnog and holiday food are waiting.

Have a fantastic holiday season and great photo opps in the New Year!


  1. Ethan,
    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Computer hard drive failure are inevitable. They last 3 to 5 years on average. I have experienced a lot of failures and your are right, the time consuming part is restoring all your applications. I use a program that does an image of the hard drive called Acronis True Image. I can restore a drive now in minutes and no reinstalling applications. I use the Seagate 500 GB Free Agent USB drives. They cost less than $120 from Hope you enjoy your Panama Adventure.
    Dave and Barb

  2. Carolyn6:05 PM

    Sorry to hear about the HD - recently had one fail here (only 2 x redundant, but thankfully redundant at all) and it's always a pain in the butt.

    A friend of mine stayed in an arial hotel -- essentially a treehouse -- when in Panama. Said there were Toucans outside his window, as well as other interesting birds.

    Can't wait to see your photos. Have fun!

  3. Anonymous10:59 AM

    Hey Ethan - happy holidays!

    The Cove *IS* a great film...I watched it a few days before you. If anyone wants to help out you can head to

    All the best in 2010...

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