Thank you all, for your kind words and request about the photo posted on June 26. I will upload a completed version to my on-line store in the next could of day. The current version is available at Flickr for download today…


The Times We Live In...

At lunch today I sat in the library reading a new book "The Beautiful Miscellaneous by Dominic Smith". Only twenty pages in, but so far I like it.

(Insert dramatic ambient music here for what happens next).

A patron walks throughout the library halls having a loud cell phone conversation. Needless to say, I and the group of people sitting around me found this to be rather disturbing and rude. What happened after that was the most comical reminder of the times we live in. The rude loud cell phone talking patron holds her hand over the cell phone and quietly whispers to the library staff person, "Could you please tell me where I may find a book on etiquette"?

I laughed.


Sue’s Daily Photography & Photos From northern Norway are two blogs that have recently come to my attention. Go check them out and leave some comments, and be sure to read/view through their archives to get a complete grasp of just how good their work is.

Additionally: I would like to give a nod to some long time bloggers that continue to impress, motivate, inspire and educate me daily. ~C4Chaos, The Daily Goose & Integral Options CafĂ©….



Current Reading: Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut
Current Music: Catch and Release Soundtrack
Mood: Clear, awake, happy
Sounds: Background conversations
Smells: Coffee
Sights: Compassion & thanks
Temperature: 89 degrees
Thoughts: Deep bow of gratitude for all the comments and e-mails over the past couples of days…


Capture the Moment: The Pulitzer Prize Photographs

This past Saturday I went to the photo exhibit Capture the Moment: The Pulitzer Prize Photographs. The largest and most comprehensive exhibition of Pulitzer Prize-winning photographs is currently on view at the Senator John Heinz History Center.

Two glasses of wine and one romantic comedy later and I still cannot get the images out of my head. The photographs hurt to look at. They are pain, raw, truth, stark images of history. The photos represented sustainable images for the hope of mankind to move forward. The photographs are not set out to be art but to preserve a moment for the viewer so they may transcend and absorb the images into their own being so photos like these may never have to be taken again.

The depth and span of the photography did include moments of compassion and beauty documenting grace and gratitude that we all may get to experience. However the overwhelming images were of death, war, and natural disaster.

What captured my view was how the crowd was taking in the experience. People gathered in bunches to view the work. It seemed to me that the collective understanding was needed to be able to take in all the emotions that the photos brought out.

At times these photographs made me want to cry. I teared up, the back of my mouth ached but I did not cry. I like myself less for not. I held in the pain. Is that the goal of the photojournalists? For the viewer to feel (at least practically) what the subject might have felt? The question I kept asking myself was: “how do you take these photos and live with yourself (and) how do you take these photos and stay alive to show them”?

At the end I felt that photojournalists must have a life dedicated to the services of others: to bring humanity into view with the rest of humanity. At the end also I thought that a photojournalist must forsake their dreams for nightmares so that the rest of us may sleep peacefully.


Whole Foods, Zaadz, Pittsburgh

It's not to often I carry my camera, glad I did today. Walking through the parking lot of Whole Foods there was this bus, how cool... Check out Zaadz....


Photo of the Week


I do nothing for the cause but I care (Stop)
I refuse to hate for love will do a better job (One)
True religion with realign us with our true nature (Data)
It is not charity it is justice, its not service to humanity it is the right of each human (Red)


Lou Reed: New York Photo Exhibits

I find it abnormal to write about photography. It’s a visual medium that lacks words for a purpose. Photography is an art that transforms and includes you into a new world. Lou Reed is a street poet, musician and photographer that takes you on a meditative, raw, skyline trip of New York City.

I went to the Warhol Museum to view Reeds work. I purposely made myself start on the 7th floor of the museum, so as not to rush the experience. I walked through the exhibits entitled “Personal Jesus: The Religious Art of Keith Haring and Andy Warhol”. Not for me personally although nonetheless great art work.

Next, down I went to the 5th floor to Reed’s work. I turned in the gallery room and there it was, Photography by Lou Reed. I went directly to a shot of a gray cloudy sky with the red ambient glow of daybreak set on the New York City skyline. The horizon line was in the dead center of the photograph. This struck me as a compositionally poor decision at first. “Who am I to judge, and the rule of thirds was meant to be broken anyway”.

Then I noticed in the majority of shots, the horizon line was in the dead mid-center of the photographs and it got me thinking “what is the message of his composition”. Architecture and nature in balance are what the photographs represent to me. Reed’s composition showed equilibrium that his love for the city was not just man made, but made in balance with man and the environment.

I walked out of the exhibit room and sat on a bench across from Reed’s gallery to write down these words: “Odd, soft focus, dawn, dust, street poet eyes, backbeat, echo, moody, surreal, questioning, dark, shaky,


Rarely Do I Look at Photographs

I received some motivation after reading the Howard Grill blog post on “How Long, Why, and Would I” about time spent looking at a photograph. It got me thinking about how little time I actually spend looking at a completed photograph.

I capture images in my camera, I edit images on my computer, and I scan the internet and magazines looking at images. Projects that I complete for clients get burned to disc, for other people to decide which images becomes a photograph and which images will be preserved on disc. Even the images in my own on-line gallery are only images until somebody else purchases them and hangs them in their home or business. Rarely do I look at photographs.

Time for a change.

This week I will go to two different galleries in Pittsburgh. First I will stop at the Andy Warhol Museum and view the current photo exhibitions of Lou Reed: New York series. Second I will go to Pittsburgh History Center to view Capture the Moment: the Pulitzer Prize Photographs where I have also been asked to write a review to post on my blog. Look for that in the near future.



Current Reading: Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut
Current Music: Live from Boston 11.10.06 by Ani Difranco
Mood: Relaxed
Sounds: Humming air vent
Smells: Brown Rice
Sights: A storm approaching
Temperature: 80 degrees
Thoughts: So why, was it not titled “So it goes”?

So it goes

This past Saturday night I sat comfortably reading Slaughterhouse 5 and at 9:30 to my shock and surprised fireworks started going off behind my house. After realizing it was not the end of the world and the Tralfamadorians were not coming to kill me, so it goes. I went out side and leaned up against a tree and took some shots. This is not my best work, because I did not use a tripod. I set the camera on aperture priority at f/4.5.

To the photogs, I recommend using a tripod and setting the camera to f/8 with a remote trigger.


To Judge or Not

To Judge or not, that is the question that has been asked of me. I have partaken in a three day experiment /exercise of noticing my thoughts and reactions to life. I have found this very hard to write about, without writing a novel (a novel that would probably not be a very readable one at that).

So, this is what I have learned about myself: Discerning between using your judgment, being judgmental and applying bad judgment is a daunting task.

First, lets start with me being judgmental (please accept this as my confession and for my penance served - consider living though the experience of punishment enough). Wal-Mart: I am a terrible human being when I have to shop at a Wal-Mart. I judge the corporation, myself and all the people there for supporting this place. I judge the people who walk slow and meander through the store. It's Wal-Mart get in and get out and most importantly get out of my way. Second, I am completely judgmental towards overweight women on cell phones driving minivans. Sorry to say that out loud (or type it out loud) but it's true, I judge overweight women on cell phones driving minivans. In my defense, you almost kill me or kill someone else during my time on the road every day. Still, please forgive me.

Next, moving on to where I feel that I am non-judgmental; listening. When I am listening to somebody I am truly listening, I am not formulating an answer when they are talking. Listening has become a lesson in being mindful for me. (Hopefully my wife is not laughing at me when she reads this..... I love you honey)

To conclude: being perceptive to applying bad judgment is the lesson learned. Living a life where you only answer from your higher self would be a very quiet life for me. Living a life in which practicing being a giver of non-judgment towards others seems like a good starting place.

If anyone else out there wishes to partake in this exercise please see here:



I have been ask to partake in a 3 day experiment (see here) I will start this on Monday.
I have been asked to write about this (see here).
This weekend I will be here.
Have a great Father's Day weekend......


Craig Biertempfel Photography

A minute ago I discovered this Pittsburgh photographer Craig Biertempfel. After about 15 minutes of viewing his website I had to share his work with you. My personal favorites are his dreamscapes- urban abstract series.

Following Up

Following up on yesterday 5 question interview series with Mike Wire: Mike would like to invite people to summit question and comments directly to him; Mike can be reached at michaelrweir@verizon.net


5 Question Interview Series with Mike Weir

Michael Weir is the owner of Heritage Hypnotherapy Center located in Pittsburgh PA. Michael is a certified hypnotherapist with a personal mission to “empower each and every client to reach their highest goals”. His motto is “the answers are within”. Michael has graciously agreed to take part in my on going “5 Question Interview Series”.

1: When did you get a first glimpse of reality?

I was eight years old. I can remember it as if it was happening right now - at this very moment; I am standing on a blacktop back road in front of my grandmother’s house.

As the heat from the sun rises from the blacktop underneath my feet, I feel my hand wipe across my eyebrows gently taking some of the salty sweat away before it stings my eyes.

I have the basketball in hand; I hold it against my side as I wipe the sweat from my hand, and then the other hand.

I’m now holding the ball with both hands; I bounce it off the blacktop, once, twice, and a third time. I look up at the rusty hoop that has some old red paint barely clinging to it. What is left of the net is tattered and torn. I notice backstop is a very weathered homemade board that is attached to the wooden telephone pole with rusty nails.

I can feel my legs bend and then as I push up I feel the ball as it floats upward from my fingertips and it goes and goes and then it hits the front of the metal ring and comes bouncing back to earth. I had missed the shot, just as I had many times before. Sometimes making it and sometimes missing it. Kind of like life;

Sometimes we hear the voice of GOD, more often though; we hear the voice of our own individuality. I walked over to the top of my grandmother’s steps and stopped to take a break.
At that very moment I made a statement; A statement that would forever change my life…

I said “I will know everything there is to know about GOD, life, and why we are here, what is here? I will accept nothing less than this.”

I felt a shudder deep inside me, a shiver run down my spine, and then a sense of peace that I never felt before.

I also had a knowing that this path was not going to happen overnight;

But rather, this was to be a walk, a walk of wonderment, a walk of peace, a walk of a love so deep, so unconditional, that every part of me knew GOD was our true reality…

2. How do you accept your own self honesty of what you know?

A: I know there is no individual self knowing, but a sharing that is eternal love. Love is a meaningless word - until it is shared, Then it is simply you…When you choose to release “all” that you’re not, All that remains is unconditional love… When will you choose to awaken...to forever remember...who you truly are?

3. How do you guide somebody who is looking for answers but not sure of the question?

Excellent question!
So many want answers till they are allowed to have them. Then they draw a blank. For in that very moment they draw that blank, they have briefly observed their mind, and it went quiet. Enjoy this peace of mind, for each moment you observe your mind, "the peace eternity" will you be holding… The you that is observing your mind - is who you really are "as spirit"…

For questions to come,

Allow yourself to first watch your mind and patiently wait for your next thought to come, and shift all your attention from your thoughts to feelings, place a hand on the middle of your chest and breathe into the center of your chest deeply, continue this breathing deeply into the center of your chest; then simply allow the questions to float to the surface, and then ask them…

4. Hypnotherapy, photography, bi-polar disorder, what gifts have they given you.

Hypnotherapy - 21 years as a regression Hypnotherapist, in working with people from all over the world, of all different spiritual, and religious beliefs, or no religious beliefs, this work has reinforced my knowing...that we are "but love"…this is an eternal - priceless gift… In life we are pretending to be separate from “which” we really are… From this - does all pain come…

Photography – Symbolism of light – I know you’re not too fond of long answers, but give me some leeway on this one. It will be worth it - I promise - (grinning)

Walk with me – as the light cradles us…sharing light has been a gift…

Light can be very symbolic.
The passion of the red light as the sun rises and spills light, erasing darkness and confusion,
Illuminating togetherness, as everything your eye sees-touches everything else,
Perfection of the dream, as the symbolism of oneness touched by the light,
The symbolism is shared by everything, as sharing is who you are as spirit,
Spirit sees only love, for love is all that is true...
The noon sun light casts harsh shadows, and raccoon eyes,
The darkness of the eyes, is symbolic of the confusion of separation,
Symbolic of living inside of the rat race of the dream,
Yet, get close to a white object and the light reflects and lightens the raccoon eyes to a beautiful blend of tone,
This is symbolic of walking the path of forgiveness and love,
This is an illuminated path to awakening,
Hold out your hand so that another can share it and remember who you are,
You are what you have always been,
You have tried to hide from who you are,
You have tried to forget who you are,
Then you have tried to remember who you are,
When you have forgotten for so long it makes remembering difficult,
So let you, help you,
You are love,
You are sharing that love that you are,
You are peace,
You are that golden light as that end of the day,

That golden glow softly caresses your skin,

It illuminates you in all your beautiful radiance,

Yes, this is symbolic of who you really are,
That warmth, that glow, that love that is you,
Remove your belief, in which you’re not,
Who you are is all that is left,

That all that you are is amazing, Just be you... Am I really the bi polar archer? No, I am but a spirit, the same spirit that is you, for we are love and we are one...

Bi Polar Disorder

This is symbolic of duality;
- Up/ down – left /right –forward/ back- yin /yang- heads/tails - you get the picture.

Duality- a “me” here/and a “you” there.

A subject and an object:

I felt a need to experience the pain of feeling completely and totally separate from GOD for half a year. I have repeated this exercise for many years in succession. Understanding and feeling the pain of man, woman, child does not healing make – I have experienced the deepest and the darkest fears that we can experience, and this too does not healing make… Healing only comes from letting go of what you’re not, to then embrace what you are… All perception of separation from the unconditional love of GOD is a nightmare, All true sharing - is a walk toward awakening from this nightmare perception of separation… You can choose to turn on the world news right now to see evidence of this nightmare, or choose to look eyes of a child and see the innocence of that child - to remember that the real you as spirit is “now” and will be, forever innocent… Choose to remember that you are eternally - God's only child…

You are not this small little individual self that really is away from unconditional love… but rather the perfect spirit that you have been since before time ever seemed to be… All bad dreams end when you awaken from them… Love is that which is waiting for you now…

Knowing the deep pain of our perception of separation from GOD is not real – Yes, this has been a precious gift…

5. Have you transcended the illusion?

Since we have never really left the unconditional love of GOD - from which we are but an extension – eternally created, for the purpose of sharing unconditional love… In true reality - Hasn’t “everyone” - “as one” transcended the illusion? Time - is the buffer that “seems to exist”- but is really just there to allow you not to be startled by awakening from this “individual separation (EGO) illusion” too fast…So your answer is yes "you" have transcended the illusion...

Bonus Question
*. How do you live with: “everything is OK except what is going on around you”?
(Poverty, Africa, etc., etc.)
Like everything, you can look at these two ways;

1. The EGO way is “Finding someone to blame”

Example of projection and passing blame:

What’s wrong with the government spending billions of dollars on defense, when you can’t go into any major American city without seeing homeless people starving right here in our own country!

Here’s another EGO judgment for you;

What’s wrong with the President who says he’s a Christian but is quick to start a war and push, and push, and push even when most of a county has said enough already.

- Christ taught love your neighbor as yourself

- Forgive everyone for anything they have ever done to you

EGO is that part of your mind whose thoughts are only of the individual, but pretends to care about others – really it is focused on who you can blame for all the injustices in the world…

Why? If I (individual I) was in charge things would be different…If I did this, If I did that, If I….things would be better…I would be a better parent than….

EGO is the part of the mind that has, and wants nothing to do with GOD. What many hear from the EGO part of their mind is something along these lines; Since EGO has completely forgot the fact that God “is unconditional love” -

The EGO feels like GOD is a punishing tyrant – who’s wrath will smite you for all your sins, you no good sinning bastard, you undeserving low life, right now you should bow down before the white haired creator of all and beg for forgiveness, even though your chances are slim to none you will get forgiveness because you are so bad!

The EGO is not at all sane, yet it is the voice that us usually strongest in our minds. In truth, you are none of those above things that the EGO tells you that you are. GOD is unconditional love – Anything that you love in life is but a symbol of that which is true love…

It is but a symbol of GOD…

So, if you love the peace you have in your country, and feel someone is trying to take it away. What are they really trying to take away from you? Yes, that’s right GOD.EGO minds purpose for People is for you to have someone other than your individual self to blame.

What good does this do you?

It helps you not to feel guilty. You can’t feel guilty if it’s not your fault something bad just happening. There are just small life plays about the real issue. You incorrectly perceive you have really left unconditional love of GOD and are now an individual identity.

All sadness comes from this feeling of loosing unconditional love. That guilty feeling that you have left it and now are an individual separate from GOD is so great that; You do not want to look at it…You do not want to feel it…You want it gone forever, but you not sure how to do it…So usually we project it onto a perceived someone else. Now I am innocent because of the fact that your guilty.

2. The Holy Spirit way of looking at life

The Holy Spirit is the other voice you hear in your mind…

It is the voice that always leads to thoughts, feelings, and actions that based on unconditional love...The voice that always leads to sharing…The voice that leads to caring and acting unselfishly...The voice that leads to forgiveness - for all whom you felt had wronged you, yourself included...This is the voice that leads you on the path to awaken to the unconditional love of GOD…To awaken to eternal peace love and joy…To awaken to an eternal kingdom – a kingdom that you have only left only in a dream…The love that awaits you in this very moment is as timeless and eternal as you are…You are a perfect spirit, dreaming of exile from perfection…Awaken and remember who you are…Smile, the eternal smile of joy…I will always love you… as I have always loved you…for we are one…“When you hold onto your thoughts by believing them - you suffer… when you question them, forgive, and release them you don’t suffer”

The practice is this;

Observe any and all thoughts you have in every waking moment. Forgive any thoughts that are not of complete and total unconditional love…Forgive those thoughts, and then simply release them from your mind - as if letting go of a dove.

Imagine those negative thoughts gently flying away. Act upon; Any thoughts that are of a wonderful sharing, A simple smile at a stranger…Saying ‘Hi”…Letting go of being too busy to listen…Hugging someone…and feeling the love of sharing as you do…Making love to someone, and feeling “as if” the two of you are becoming one…Helping someone who needs help, just because you can…Giving away something that someone else needs more…all receiving, is done though giving…

Watching children play…then joining in the fun and feeling the freedom of the innocence… an innocence that seems familiar to you, as it’s who you really are as spirit…Dancing…closing your eyes and letting the music into your heart…letting the beat of the music move your body…setting your inhabitations free, yes watching as you let that dove go…Playing music…feel your spirit talking as you are making music…allow the words to flow into notes…notes that are shared…Talking to a homeless person…sharing of thoughts…feeling your soul…Feeling your connection to everything around you…flowing in the peace that you are connected to all that you see…Thoughts of loving - just to love… completely and totally absent of all fear…For the real you fears nothing…These thoughts and actions are but some of the steps to the real you…to that timeless eternal you that you are in this very moment…if you have ever said “please guide me” then; Take my hand, and walk with me…


Photo of the Week

Camera: Nikon D70s
Exposure: 0.001 sec (1/1600)
Aperture: f/2.8
Focal Length: 10.5 mm
ISO Speed: 200



"Stop asking God to bless what you're doing; get involved in what God is doing —because it's already blessed."

Bono – 2006

This quote has haunted my memory since I heard it back in 2006. It is from the National Prayer Breakfast on February 2, 2006. Please give it a read or watch it here. I place this post on my blog today more as a reminder to myself of what type of person I want to be.

Ocean 13, Sangrias, Art Festival

This weekend: Oceans 13 , sangrias , PGH Arts Festival.

Personally I am not a fan of arts festivals; crowds, overpriced fried food and people who smoke in public places drive me crazy. One thing that I am not certain of about arts festivals are: “is this where successful artists come to start their careers or is this where successful artists come to end their careers?

I have partaken in arts festivals as a guitar player but I have never had a photography booth. Maybe I will try one mid-career? (Probably not)

Oceans Thirteen, funny, funny movie. Music soundtrack is great, fretless bassline against old jazz grooves. Cinema-photography is excellent, you could freeze frame any scene and have a well composed photograph. On a side note the movie The Fountain had even better cinema-photography.

Sangrias on the front porch with my wife, a tasty drink to watch the sunset.


Notes from the Mat

Quick meditation is that an oxymoron? This morning I was running late and was ready to skip my meditation for the day. Then I decided to sit for twenty slow breaths. Thankful that I did, I found that the time spent was centering and focusing for the outlook of my day.



A new blog written by a good friend of mine whom will be feature in my next 5 Question Interview Series. Be sure to ask him a question, the answer might change your life.


Photo of the Week

Camera: Nikon D70s
Exposure: 30 sec (30)
Aperture: f/22
Focal Length: 29 mm
ISO Speed: 200


Sunday Afternoon

Sunday afternoon, I sat on the steps of my front porch playing guitar to the natural rhythms of the outdoors. A glass of white wine was to the right of me, my dog sat to the left and in my lap sat a Spanish guitar. In the middle I sat, with a smile, for this is one of those moments that you know will be committed to memory as one of those grand moments (kind of pre-transcendental of me, wouldn’t you say?) (Or) (Maybe it was post-transcendental of me because I am reflecting from a memory? Either way it was quite a noticeable moment). Wind, birds, cars and neighbors were all the back beat to my music. Music for your environment is one thing but to play music with your environment is a hypnotic experience, very satisfying to say the least. I cannot remember if I ever sat outside and practiced my guitar before. My memories of music outside are more professional recollections of playing festivals or park concerts but not just the simplicity of practicing music for the enjoyment of practicing music. Remembering old songs and re-working them in an alterative tuning that I have been experimenting with gave me limitless options on the fret board. One problem kept crossing my mind.

If you don’t know the fret board then you don’t know the music. The music becomes only fingers on strings, strings on wood that become reverberation of sound without the understanding of theory.

With this new tuning (DADGAD) the fret board has become a mystery to me. I know the root notes of what I am playing but have no understanding of what and why of the chords that I strum. “This is music”, I think to myself, without the understanding of theory. A total comprehension of the fret board is important to me, and I will learn it thoroughly, but for now I play.



Current Reading: Assault on Reason by AL Gore
Current Music: Local Radio WYEP
Mood: Confused about phone calls???
Sounds: Hippie Jazzy background music
Smells: Green Tea
Sight: Front porch, white wine, Spanish guitar in my hands
Temperature: 76 degrees
Thoughts: The movie “The Fountain” is really good