Sunday, December 30, 2007

Blues In A Bottle by Frank Schaap

This is my favorite street musician. Frank Schaap plays in Northampton, Massachussetts on occasion. He usually lives in Paris, but plays in other countries too. He opened for Madeleine Peyroux in Paris many times. I bought his CD, and it is wonderful I am hoping to see him in 2008, and maybe get a new CD?? Let's hope he shows in Northampton! I know he said he wasn't too thrilled about the tipping there. Cheap assholes!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Photoshop Art

Alex and Grandpa Joe.
 Alex never met his grandfather. This is an art piece I did of Alex thinking about his grandfather in old B&W movie form. The picture of my Dad was taken back in 1978, and orginally was in color. I used photoshop to create the piece.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Playing With Photoshop CS3

I was playing with Adobe Photoshop CS3. I took a regular digital photo, taken with a Canon SD800 point & shoot camera, then applied the new Black and White feature to the picture. Then I applied a Lomo script to the second picture. Which do you like better and why?

Saturday, December 22, 2007

I'm the Chaser

I made the mistake of chasing someone I loved. Never again.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Linus Explains Christmas

I just love the original Linus voice in "A Charlie Brown Christmas". I remember watching this every year.
Although I was raised Catholic, I don't follow any one religion. I choose to believe that spirituality is in the heart and mind (in how a person lives with integrity, love and a spirit of service in giving), which transcends all man-made religions. This Collaboration with Charles Schultz and Vince Giraldi was truly genius!

The real meaning of Christmas

Monday, December 03, 2007

Roberts Rules Of Entrepreneurship

This is an article written by Flori Roberts for the SCORE website on the Rules of Entrepreneurship.

Roberts Rules of Entrepreneurship

By Flori Roberts

You believe in yourself. You have ideas and dreams. Use these convictions to create a rewarding and fulfilling business life, where you are the boss. During the agonies and ecstasies of starting my own company, I learned these "rules of entrepreneurship" the hard way…on the job! Perhaps it can help those of you who are just beginning, to start on the right track and to avoid the road blocks along the way.

You probably need a break from the complexity of starting a business. Here is some fundamental business advice—simple, straight forward and easy to implement.

1. Find a need—be ahead of your time.
Find a niche where the Giants won't bother to go.

2. Identify your market and learn all about it.
You have to know everything about your business at the start.

3. Prepare a business plan...yes you have to.
No bank will take you seriously without a plan for profits.

4. Have adequate financing to start and to stay.
Success does not happen overnight, so be sure you're financially fit.

5. Pay for the best professional advice.
Lawyers, accountants, insurers do work on an as needed, fee basis.

6. Keep your overhead low and your standards high.
Work from home or at a low cost, convenient location.

7. Establish a clearly defined distribution network.
Whatever your product or service, how will you present and sell it?

8. Be creative—your new idea does count.
Depend on marketing strategies rather than costly advertising to grow.

9. Seek and hire the most qualified people.
From the first employee, look for someone who knows more than you.

10. Know your competition and work to win.
Be persistent, focused and flexible…anything can happen.

11. Learn from the success and failure of others.
Read, watch trends, and observe what is "hot" in your industry.

12. Use technology as a tool for building your business.
From computers to telecommunications to the Web-use them all.

13. Don't be sensitive and don't take it personally.
Be prepared for rejection, but never give up your dream.

14. Never underestimate the power of passion.
You will need to take risks and believe when no one else does.

Starting a business requires discipline and discipline requires rules. You may want to follow my "rules of entrepreneurship" or create your own set of rules. But you must clearly identify your goals and live by them. Use them as a road map to your success. Good luck!

Flori Roberts is creative advisor to The Roberts Group, a cosmetics sales and marketing company. Roberts co-founded Flori Roberts Cosmetics and Dermablend Corrective Cosmetics. As an entrepreneur, she launched and grew two businesses to multi-million dollar proportions.

Friday, November 30, 2007

X-Files: Ascen


Cynthia visited on my birthday!

Cynthia visited on my birthday in September. We went out to breakfast with the family and talked about the old days at Hallmark and Plaza Deli Mart. We had so much fun working together. She's lived in North Carolina for years. I actually thought about moving out there, but am still looking around in neighboring states like, South Carolina, and even Florida. The retirement dollar is less taxed in those states. 

My True Friend

She's known me for over 22 years, has been there for me through thick and thin. She's my best friend in the whole world! I cherish her!

Barnes and Noble Books

After lunch at Mei Tzu's, John and I met the sisters at Barnes and Noble books in Enfield. I bought a great book on Leopard Mac OS X 10.5. You can see it behind the snowman cookie. I love bookstores. So much to read, so little time. LOL!

Mei Tzu Restaurant in East Windsor CT

Kiiyen is the owner. He and his Mom ran it until she retired, now it's Kiiyen running it! I knew them when they owned The Wok in East Granby. They ventured out on their own to East Windsor, and I love the place. Kiiyen is a (Graphic) Designer by trade, and he designed the menus and the interior of the restaurant. The menu has chinese and japanese cuisine. If you like Sushi, they have it here. I always get the garlic vegetables with tofu. John and I went for lunch. The tea was lovely.  

My two wonderful sisters!

Such an Odd Angle!!!

John, What the hell were you thinking taking the picture like this? LOL!!!

Night Walking The Dogs

My brother-in-law and I walked the dogs at night. Yes, it was damp and freezing! The dogs didn't seem to care.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Wine Tasting

This Spanish Wine wasn't my favorite. I liked the Pinot Noir before it.  

Jo Jo's All Grown Up!

They've Grown!!

That's little Mikey on the far left, then Shannon, me, Joey, and his girlfriend. Unbelievable!

Thanksgiving Feast

You know I had to photograph my plate. Quite yummy too!

Tillie Through Glass

She peaks through the door. If I don't let her in quick enough, she starts scratching...and scratching. Today was a good day for her. She went for two walks. This is quite the task for her as she is 14 years old with many maladies. Good for you, Tillie!

Alex in a Silly Mood

Alex Clowning Around

More Pictures!! Daggnabbit!

Caryn is Back in Connecticut!!! More pictures!

This is one buggy ass blog! I'm trying to upload photos and the upload window keeps freezing up, thereby not allowing me to upload photos. You'd think they'd have this down to a science by now!

Caryn is back in Connecticut!!!

My cousin Caryn moved back to Connecticut! Wahoo! We immediately went to lunch at Mei Tzu's restaurant in East Windsor, ("hi", Kiiyen!!). Then off to Starbucks in Windsor Locks. Will have to show more pictures as I process them. These were taken via the iPhone. 

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Repeat Article: Know Your Rights As A Photographer

It's so far back in the archives, it needs to be repeated:

Photographer's Rights
The Photographer's Right - A Downloadable Flyer
Your Rights When You Are Stopped or Confronted for Photography

The right to take photographs is under assault now more than ever. People are being stopped, harassed, and even intimidated into handing over their personal property simply because they were taking photographs of subjects that made other people uncomfortable. Recent examples have included photographing industrial plants, bridges, and bus stations. For the most part, attempts to restrict photography are based on misguided fears about the supposed dangers that unrestricted photography presents to society.

Ironically, unrestricted photography by private citizens has played an integral role in protecting the freedom, security, and well-being of all Americans. Photography in the United States has contributed to improvements in civil rights, curbed abusive child labor practices, and provided important information in investigating crimes. These images have not always been pretty and often have offended the sensibilities of governmental and commercial interests who had vested interests in a status quo that was adverse to most other people.

Photography has not contributed to a decline in public safety or economic vitality in the United States. When people think back on the acts of terrorism that have occurred over the last forty years, none have depended on or even involved photography. Restrictions on photography would not have prevented any of these acts. Similarly, some corporations have a history of abusing the rights of photographers under the guise of protecting their trade secrets. These claims are almost always meritless because entities are required to keep trade secrets from public view if they want to protect them. Trade secret laws do not give anyone the right to restrain photographers from taking photographs in public places.

The Photographer's Right is a downloadable guide that is loosely based on the Bust Card and the Know Your Rights pamphlet that used to available on the ACLU website. It may be downloaded and printed out using Adobe Acrobat Reader. You may make copies and carry them your wallet, pocket, or camera bag to give you quick access to your rights and obligations concerning confrontations over photography. You may distribute the guide to others ,provided that such distribution is not done for commercial gain and credit is given to the author. (Burt P. Krages II

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Some Pictures...

Nothing fancy. Just some pictures.

This is the comics effect in photobooth

Starbucks in PhotoBooth

At the Starbucks in Windsor Locks