One Heck of an Ice Dam!

Yep, that’s a frozen Dam. I was always under the belief that dams don’t freeze in the winter time because they are always turning out enough water to keep it warm enough from freezing. This is true in the case of Ennis Dam. Well, Holter Dam apparently wasn’t turning out that much water and it froze. That’s okay because it made for one really cool backdrop. Dam’s are a unique feature in photographs I find because it’s having to mesh the human-made world with the natural world and that doesn’t always work. Dan acted as my model for this shoot and even though he was backlit the bright backdrop made it so that he popped. No one thinks about fly fishing in the winter time but it is one of the best times to be fishing and the photography seems so unusual that it makes it interesting.

Image captured with Nikon D5, 24-70 AF-S, on Lexar UDMA Digital Film

Spring Fishing is Almost Here!

That’s right it is almost time for those great spring fishing days with the amazing colors and vibrant patterns of the various fish species that come from those days. The cold temps are finally starting to rescind which means the ice flows will begin to break up and the rivers will once again be more suitable for fishing. In the meantime it’s still prep time with studying the fisheries, looking at snow packs and getting those flies ready.

Printing Finishes the Story

Every photo tells a story but a print keeps that story alive. Having a large library of images is great but if you don’t find a way to share those images and tell those stories to others so that they live on, then the images become worthless. A recent shoot I did lead to 23 prints needed to keep that day alive. The clients said they were “giddy” when they were going through them, reliving every moment. That’s the power that prints can have.

Printing is a science. It takes time and practice to know which images look good on what paper and under what circumstances. There are many great resources out there that can help you learn but the best teacher is to just print and keep printing until you run out of ink and paper and then you print some more. For this purpose, I rely on Epson Surecolor P400 and Epson Papers.

Spitfires on Malta

Spitfires were used all over the world throughout WWII making it one of the most versatile aircraft used during the war. Among the battlefronts it served with, was on the small island of Malta. Civilization on Malta has been around for centuries and every since it began there has been constant fighting over the island due to its strategic position in the Mediterranean Sea. Control over northern Africa has always been fought for and during WWII it was paramount for the Axis powers. Well, the battle for Malta lasted for two years and with the help of Spitfires, the Allies were able to maintain control of the island.

On March 7th, 1942, 16 Supermarine Spitfires MkV’s were delivered via USS Eagle to the island, along with nine more from USS Eagle. 47 more were delivered on April 13th, 1942. All of this was part of Operation Spotter which gave priority to reinforcing the island in order to help hold Africa. Unfortunately, the majority of those aircraft were destroyed on the ground throughout March and April. Despite the loses, the island held and the Axis powers paid dearly in men and machines trying to take the island. Many of those reserves were needed in the Africa campaign but would never get there.

This particular Spitfire is part of the Historic Aircraft Collection, in Duxford, England. It happens to be an MkVb painted in honor of the RAF Polish 315 and 317 squadrons.

Images captured with Nikon D5, 70-300 VRII, on Lexar UDMA Digital Film

Jungle Ace, a Great Read

I’ve been bad about my reading over this past year, getting rather behind, with books stacking up on my shelves to read but I’ve finally got back into the swing of things and have gotten a little bit of reading done. I just finished Jungle Ace and I have to say it’s just a great read. It’s all about John Gerald Johnson and his exploits as an ace pilot throughout the Pacific. He flew P-38’s with the likes of Dick Bong, Wally Jordan, and Tommy McGuire. He was more than a quadruple ace, he was a leader to his men. If you’re in need of a good read, you might want to check it out.

The Widowmaker

The B-26 was known as many names but was best known as the widowmaker due to so many accidents in the early models during takeoffs and landings. This medium bomber was used in the Pacific and the European theatres throughout WWII with devastating effect. While originally the plane was not popular the Martin company bomber proved vital in its roles in New Guinea and then in Europe leading up to and following the D-Day invasion.

While the B-26 served throughout many theatres it certainly had an important and less well-known role during the fight against Germany. The planes were used with the 8th Air Force and later the 9th Air Force starting in early 1943. Just like the B-25, the B-26 was used as an attack bomber against small targets like bridges, rail yards, and even submarine pens. They performed these operations so well that by the end of the war in 1945, the 9th Air Force gave the B-26 the highest rating for accuracy at medium altitude. Even after D-Day the men on the ground would call in for tactical support and B-26’s would be one of the planes used to support the troops. It was fast, rugged and the men depended on it.

It’s Just Pretty

Ever since I got this new reel and rod setup, I have been taking photos of it. The Sage Pulse, 9′ 6wt and Ross Evolution LTX Reel are just an amazing combo! Beyond the feel and application purposes combined they are just gorgeous in any photo. Naturally this past weekend while there was a little break in the cloud cover, I had to grab a couple of quick clicks.

Images Captured with Nikon D5, 24-70 AF-S, on Lexar UDMA Digital Film

A Wedding in the Snow

Well I don’t normally photograph weddings but when it comes to photography you can either stick to your realms or push yourself and try something new. Especially if those people asking are friends. It turned out to be a marvelous event, with even the weather cooperating, being the one nice day in between two weeks of cold and snow. Obviously that didn’t affect Lindsay and Paul who were both willing to go out in the snow.

When it came to the shooting aspect of it I kept it simple with my sling bag, three lenses and one camera body. Primarily I used the 24-70 AF-S f/2.8, which I know many don’t like to use for weddings, but for a general purpose lens it’s hard to beat. The other two were the 18-35 and 70-200. The 70-200 is a great choice for getting those candid moments when people aren’t paying attention to you and are involved with their own conversations. The big thing is going with a shot list and making sure you get all the important photos done quickly and well. You can’t go back and redo anything. The really important part is to keep it fun. While it is work it has to be fun for everyone taking the photos and then receiving them.

Not your Average Valentine’s Day

This might not be the most cheery of Valentine Day posts but frankly I couldn’t find a photograph of something that was really cheery and this day does mark an important day in aviation history. The F4U Corsair was one of the fiercest Allied aircraft during WWII but it didn’t have an auspicious start. If you’re into aviation or a bit of a history buff then you’ve probably have heard of all the trouble that Vought had getting this plane from the blueprints to Carrier decks. But once it was there, pilots swore by it.

Today marks the first combat action of the F4U, from Marine units based on Guadalcanal in 1943. On a mission to Kahili Field in Southern Bougainville, fifty alerted Zero’s were ready for the American bombers and their escort of fighters. Two P-40’s, two PB4Y’s, four P-38’s and two Corsairs were shot down during the raid. Only three Zero’s were shot down during the attack. It was a devastating blow to the men stationed at Guadalcanal and was hence dubbed the St. Valentines Day Massacre.

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