Being on German TV
19th September 2016
Towards the end of May, my husband came home from an IT event he attended and told me about some of the people he met there, which he always does. Among others, he mentioned a man who is a manager with a television station here in Germany. They film several series based on locations in the area and on the people who live here. They wanted to film an episode with my hubby based in our area with mention of his IT company. When Wolf told him that his wife is a photographer, he said that they didn't do individuals. So, imagine my surprise when he called the house a few days later saying that they had looked at my website and wanted to film a segment of "Entdecke Rhein Lahn" with me.

When I was a child, I had an inner ear infection which left me with no hearing in one ear and limited hearing in the other. When more than one person talks at a time or when I'm in a crowded room with a lot of conversation, I can't make anything out. It can be frustrating and hard but, unfortunately nothing can be changed. So, as a result, I'm an introvert...I would rather be behind the camera than in front of it.

When Wolf talked to me about filming the episode, I tried to think of every reason not to do it. I didn't want to back out of it though and regret it later, so I decided to do it and let the chips fall where they may. I went over things in my mind and hoped that I wouldn't screw the German language up too much.

The day of filming both of our episodes came and, unfortunately, the weather was not the best...cloudy, rainy and cold. Not what we wanted but what we had expected with the way our weather has been this year. So, we put on warm clothes, our jackets and set out for the meeting place.

The three of us walked to where Wolf would be filing part of his episode. After about an hour, it was my turn. This part wasn't hard since it only consisted of me walking and acting like I was taking a few photos (which I actually did). Since I had an exhibition going on in a nearby village, we drove there where my interview took place. I admit that I wimped and, instead of doing the interview in German, I did it in English and they dubbed it. Looking back, I could kick myself for taking the "easy" way out, but hindsight is always easy.

The mayor of the village was also there and said a few words on camera, which I found rather nice. It was good publicity for the village and the possibility of other artists showing there too.

The end result of the 5:30 minute series is well done. After the filming was done, my husband looked at the editor/videographer and said that he couldn't believe that it was actually his wife talking - he thought (as I did) that my nervousness would show on camera. I was nervous but, after a while, I felt more comfortable with the camera running.

The nervousness returned the day of the TV showing so I set the recorder and watched it later. They did a wonderful job not only putting the show together but dubbing it.

I guess you could say that was my five minutes of fame.

Being Grateful
17th September 2016
It's always nice when someone purchases a photo of mine, whether it be at an exhibition, through Etsy or my website. I always like to give them a small "Thank You" by including a photo card or two featuring a photo in the same theme that they purchased. They love it and I like the way it makes me feel, which is why I do it.

Saying "Thank You" in other situations is also appreciated; whether it be to the mail person, the check out person at the grocery or the delivery person. I consider it just good manners and the way I was brought up.

Along with my own website, I also work on the website of two artist groups that I belong. I volunteered my help on one since the former webmaster had other interests and no time to update it. The other one I created and maintained for the group.

The former group appreciates what I do and expresses such to me; the latter not. In the latter case, I have done the website for six years for free even paying the expenses to run the site. But, after six years without a "Thank You" from anyone (not to mention the lack of input or interest in the site), I decided to give up the site. I offered to transfer it to anyone who wanted to take it over and do the work. One lady reluctantly volunteered to do it although she has no experience in anything web-related. At our last group meeting (which she didn't bother to attend), we tried to explain to the group leader what would be needed to transfer it all over. After a blank stare from the leader, the new webmaster was sent a list of hosting options and a basic "how-to" for the transfer, along with a two week deadline to get it done (since the URL was expiring soon).

But, imagine my surprise when a vote was taken to continue the site and even pay for it. As I left the meeting, I felt angry, disappointed and taken advantage of - all of which I wouldn't have felt had someone taken the time along the way to say "Thank You".

And, as I concentrate on my upcoming exhibitions and the websites I currently maintain, I will remember to say "Thank You"...and mean it.

Thank you for reading this and I truly hope that you enjoy my photos.

Pet Peeves and Photography
26th April 2016
I have a few pet peeves.

One is people who act like they are in the know when they point to one of your photos and declare not everything is in focus. They don't realize - nor care - that you intended the photo that way. I speak from experience here as I have had a friend do that to me. "Alles ist nicht scharf" (Everything is not sharp), he pointed out. I told him about selective focus and that was the way I intended the photo. He merely shook his head like he didn't believe me and walked away.

But I guess I should say that this friend was also someone who didn't actually think I was taking the photos, but my husband. Go figure.

Another is people who think that they should be professional photographers since they are able to get everything in focus, or their friends tell them they should be. It takes more than takes the eye.

I tried to explain that to my husband one evening without trying to sound like a space cadet. I finally decided to just tell it to him straight. When I walk around with my camera, I look at things differently. I picture the scene in my mind as a finished photo. If I like the result, I take a photo of it and use my software to achieve the look I envisioned.

I took online classes with the New York Institute of Photography back in 2004. It taught me a lot about photography and equipment. But I hadn't developed the eye yet and continued to take photos - they were at least in focus. It wasn't until I saw the artist with his hands around his wine glass that something clicked (besides my shutter). Slowly but surely, I started to develop the eye. I bought books home and started pouring through them to see if I could see what other photographers saw.

And I experimented...a lot. Thank goodness for digital cameras which gave me the freedom to do that.

Even after all these years and many exhibitions, I find my eye ever evolving. And it's fun.
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