Category Archives Fun

For those of you who have read any one of my books, you already know that the introduction I write at the beginning of each chapter seldom has anything to do with what is actually in that chapter. I put these quirky chapter intros in there as kind of a mental break between chapters, and well…I’d be the first to admit, they’re kind of whacked.

I generally write these late at night, usually, while I’m tired after a long day at work, and well that alone explains a lot. Anyway, I’m doing a major update on one of my books right now, and when I got to a chapter about Landscape Photography, and read what I had written in the previous edition, I realized…there must be something very wrong with me. To prove that point, I’m going to run that very chapter intro below, because…well…there must be something wrong with me. Here we go:

I think one of the most appealing things about being a landscape photographer is not only are you coming back with amazing photos, but you get to experience some of the best of what nature has to offer while you’re doing it. I’ll never forget this one time I was shooting in Montana’s Glacier National Park. I got up around 4:15 a.m., so I could head out early and be in position before sunrise. When I reached the lake overview, it was still pitch dark, and I remember setting up my tripod and watching it blow right over in the freezing wind that whipped off the lake. I just laughed and set it right back up, attached my camera gear to the ballhead, and realized that I’d better not let go of the rig or it, too, might blow over.

I didn’t want to give up my spot, because I had a pretty good vantage point (at least it looked like a good one in the dim moonlight). So, there I stood, out in the freezing, bitter cold, where each gust of wind was like a thousand knives jabbing right through me. I’m standing there shivering in the piercing cold, and then it started to rain. Not snow. Nope, that would have been pretty. It was rain. A driving rain that felt like an army of Lilliputians were firing their tiny arrows right into me, but I just stood there in the bone-chilling cold like a wet, frozen statue, with my cracked, frostbitten fingers barely able to grip my tripod. I silently prayed for the sweet mercy of death to come upon me and relieve me of this frigid hostile misery.

It was just then when I looked over and saw another photographer, who had just set up his tripod about 14 feet from me, slip on the ice that had formed on the overlook. I stood there and watched as he and his tripod, expensive camera and all, slid down the side of the embankment. I could hear him moaning for help, but I just couldn’t stop smiling as I looked over and saw his Tamrac camera bag on the overlook beside me. I nearly pulled a muscle as I tossed his gear-laden bag full of lenses and accessories into my rented SUV and quickly drove away, thinking to myself, “Man, this is what it’s all about.”

Well, there ya have it. I wasn’t kidding about the ‘wacked’ thing now, was I?

Yes, it’s really “a thing.”

If you’ve read this far, well…I can’t believe you hung in there, but I’m grateful you did and I totally dig you (in a non-sexual way). Now, if this “wackness’ resonated with you (so, you’re messed up, too), I actually published an entire book of nothing but my handpicked favorite chapter intro from over the years. Yup, it’s a book of nothing but Chapter Intros (without the chapters).

If you’re a KelbyOne member, you can download the eBook version absolutely free from your Creative Toolkit on the member’s Website (it’s in the ‘Perk’ category in the sidebar on the left; click on Toolkit and it’s on page 2 in the list of perks).

If you’re not a KelbyOne member, you can buy the Kindle version on Amazon for $9.99, which is incredibly overpriced, but worth every penny. Here’s the link. You’ll be a better person for buying it, and if you do, as a sidenote I could use a review on Amazon. It’s rated only 3-1/2 stars since I got a one-star review from a guy who complained there was no training in the book, which is absolutely true — and it says so right on the cover. It literally says these words right on the cover:

There are no tutorials, no learning. Just intros. I’m not kidding. Buy it anyway.

In fact, on Amazon, the title is actually slightly different (same book though) than the one on the KelbyOne Website. On Amazon the title is “

Buy This Book of Chapter Intros Even Though You Won’t Learn Anything

He bought it anyway yet was upset because he didn’t learn anything. He wrote that (wait for it…wait for it…) it had no tutorials, no learning, just intros. Sigh.

So, if you buy it, and somehow actually like the book (hey, it could happen), I would love for you to share your review on Amazon. If you hate it, you can still post a review of course, but please only because you hated my quirky stream-of-conscientiousness chapter intros, not because it had no tutorials and learning stuff, ’cause if I read another one like that, I’m going to freakin’ jump out the window. ;-)

Here’s wishing you a weekend full of wacked stuff (in a good way), and a bunch of chapter intros that have no basis in reality. :)

-Scott
Author of what may be the greatest useless book ever!

Today is a big holiday in the US. It’s a day where we take time off to celebrate all the things we’re thankful for. We get together with family; over-eat a traditional Thanksgiving Day meal, and then we watch football until we pass out. It’s just about a perfect day.

I am so grateful for the many blessings in my life, and so I wanted to take a few minutes to share the things I’m thankful for this Thanksgiving Day. I started this list last year, and I updated it again today. I believe counting your blessings is one of the best things a person can do (and that this list of 200 is only a start, is a real blessing to me for sure).

Here they are, (in no particular order, except the first one):

I’m thankful….

1. that I got to marry the girl of my dreams (30-years ago this past September)

2. for Keurig Coffee Makers

3. for little hole-in-the-wall restaurants

4. for having a big brother I could always look up to

5. that she said “yes!”

6. for the “Skip” button on YouTube ads 

7. when I hear the ringtone that lets me know my son is texting us

8. for Seinfeld reruns 

9. that I learned how to use Photoshop and Lightroom

10. for lazy Saturday mornings when we just chill

11. for Saturday College Football games and that our son chose a big football school (#rolltide!)

12. for Hulu, Netflix and Amazon Prime

13. for Maggie the Wonderdog

14. for how happy Maki the SuperDog makes my wife

15. for that first cup of coffee in the morning

16. that my wife got us a Latte maker

17. for big greasy double-cheeseburgers served in restaurants whose cleanliness is so suspect that my wife would never eat there

18. for anytime I drive up to our house, and see our son’s truck sitting out front

19. that first morning hug from my wifey

20. for the magic and wonder that is Kathy Porupski

21. that this year the Patriot’s aren’t as good as they usually are

22. for any chilly day here in Florida

23. for my daughter’s wonderful sense of humor

24. when my daughter shares her drawings with me

25. for CoffeeMate individual creamers

26. that my son was born with the built-in love of helping and looking out for other people

27. for the texts my sons sends that often bring tears of joy to my eyes 

28. for my daughter’s laugh

29. for all the family traditions that my wife fosters and we all love

30. that my daughter gets to attend a great school

31. for Dunkin Donut’s drive-thru in the morning, and that they’ll make up your coffee just the way you like it for you, ready to go.

32. for Terry White

33. for the kind people who read my blog each day

34. for all the little things

35. for our cozy couch for watching TV

36. for Logic Pro X (the wonderful recording studio software on my Mac)

37. for pepperoni Pizzas and the fine people who deliver them. 

38. for the awesome plug-ins for Logic Pro X that do things Logic can’t.

39. that my son is such a faithful person by nature

40. for Sunday night’s texting my buddy Jeff Revell as we watch ‘The Walking Dead’ together, while 1,000 miles apart

41. for our tradition of watching “Love Actually” again every Christmas

42. for living so close to Disney World

43. for how awesome my wife is at planning trips

44. for being married to such an amazing cook

45. for a really comfy bed pillow

46. for Rick and Susan Sammon

47. for all my guitars

48. for beautiful offices for us to work in each day

49. to have Jessica, Kim and Cindy work on my books

50. that people actually buy my books, which lets me keep writing them

51. for the smell of my wife’s cooking when I walk in the door

52. for times when just my daughter and I get to go out to lunch

53. for Moose and Sharon

54. for Dave, Peter, and Glyn 

55. for having such wonderful, loving, and just plain awesome parents

56. for being able to play musical instruments

57. for having mentors whose wisdom and whip-cracking have helped immeasurably throughout my life

58. for Jeanne Jilleba who helps me so much each day

59. for having a great relationship with my mother and father-in-law

60. for having a mother-in-law who stepped in for my own mother when she passed away

61. for the trips my brother and I take together once a year

62. to Delta, their SkyClub, and all the upgrades I get each year

63. to Erik Kuna for being my friend

64. for all the folks who come out to my seminars each year.

65. that I still get to work with my friend Ted Waitt

66. for Levi, and Sally and Dianne for caring so much about our members

67. for Chris, Karen and Pam – I’m lucky to work with them

68. for my wife’s beautiful smile

69. for how my son always shares new songs he finds with me

70. for all the times my wife texts me a heart emoji

71. for somebody’s else’s fries

72. for how my friend Dave Clayton’s texts always make me laugh out loud

73. that my kids know they are loved completely and unconditionally 

74. for my Pastor and friend Douglas Poole

75. for Victoria’s sweet texts, and for what a joy she is

76. that I get to drive a car each day that makes driving a joy

77. for really good air conditioning

78. that I get to use such great camera and lighting gear

79. for Google’s news app on my phone

80. for my great Web team; Adam, Aaron, Yo, and Curt 

81. for everybody who checked on my wifey when she got in an accident

82. for black t-shirts with logos on them

83. for Dave Black, Kristy Sherk, Lindsay Adler and Peter Hurley, 

84. for the beautiful baby grand piano Kalebra bought for my birthday 20+ years ago

85. that I’ve been able to be a part of the Photoshop World conference all these years

86. for when ideas pop in my head, and for the ability to move on when it turns out some of them aren’t as great as I thought

87. for all my friends who came to the rescue

88. for the pretty drive to work in the mornings

89. for Juan, Mike, Jason and Christina

90. that my daughter and our niece are such great friends

91. that my son loves so many different kinds of music (everything from classic rock to Sinatra to rap to metal)

92. for all the times my big brother helped me, and guided me, when I was growing up.

93. for my Apple Watch and all the reminders it gives me

94. for weekends and days off

95. for the smell of coffee brewing

96. for Margie, Angela, John and Rachel

97. for Maxx Hammond for being such a great friend to my son all these years and for being an important part of our family

98. for comfortable shoes

99. for having a friend like Manny

100. for loving every minute with my family

101. for the men and women of our military 

102. for Julie, Kleber, and Heidi

103. for the little Blackstar tube amp sitting on my desk at work

104. anytime I get to go to New York City, like just yesterday.

105. for our dear friend and partner Jean A.

106. for James Taylor

107. for all the awesome texts I’m getting from friends today

108. that my daughter still cares that I bake my special “Christmas Cookies” each year when we put up the tree (and I’m grateful she thinks Pillsbury mean ‘special’).

109. my guardian angel 

110. for fresh bagels with a little too much cream cheese

111. for my friend Larry Tiefenbrunn and that there are people out there like him

112. for first responders

113. that my camera bag has four wheels

114. for those times where all three doggos are napping

115. for Larry Becker, Rob Sylvan, and Dave Williams

116. for my friends Chicky Nando, Pisco, Big Mike, Cathy B, and Mimo

117. for all the stuff in Erik’s backpack (since he always has that thing I need that I forgot to bring)

118. for waking up feeling great in the morning!

119. for Joe and Annie

120. that our dog Maki has a best friend in our son’s dog Nami

121. for beautiful clouds when I’m shooting a sunrise

122. for a yummy breakfast after a sunrise shoot

123. for my wife’s homemade chocolate-chip pancakes

124. for the sound of my wife’s voice

125. for mornings when I get up early and get a bunch of stuff done and I look up and it’s only 8:15 am

126. any time I get to land in London

127. for the quiet time my wife and I share with our coffee in the mornings before the kids wake up

128. for my MacBook Pro and how much easier it makes my business life each day

129. for forgiveness 

130. that I realize what a privileged, blessed life I lead, and to whom I owe the thanks

131. that I start each day getting centered reading the Bible and daily devotionals

132. for how my daughter is always dancing

133. for the night’s where our family gets together to play games

134. for when we all lay on the floor, looking up and debate how tall the ceiling is in our living room

135. for our holiday trips to Disney’s Hollywood Studios

136. for cheese. Any kind of cheese. Even if it dispenses from a can. Especially if it dispenses from a can.

137. that somebody kept reading even though we’re down to number 137

138. that we have doggie treats when we really need them

139. for breakfasts at First Watch

140. for Carmine’s on W. 44th Street (ate there again on Tuesday. Still amazing!)

141. for all the awesome instructors I get to work with

142. for empty middle seats

143. for my iPad and all the awesome apps

144. for the Apple News+ app so I can read all my favorite magazines on my iPad

145. that I get to make new friends along the way

146. that people come to my workshops

147. for everyone who has stuck up for me in an online forum

148. for all the people who helped me along the way, and who may be gone, but are not forgotten

149. for our great partners who sponsor The Grid

150. that for seven years now I’ve been blessed to do a weekly live photography show and have such wonderful photographers as guests

151. for my Platypod Ultra

152. that my employees have a long weekend this weekend

153. for my son’s new girlfriend treating him so wonderfully

154. that we work so close to one of the best Cuban restaurants in Tampa Bay

155. for Tara our awesome official Chilis server for over 11-years now

156. for how happy fresh flowers make my wife

157. to see how happy it makes Kalebra when we all eat our vegetables at dinner

158. for a big beautiful yard for the doggos to run in. 

159. for Sundays when I sleep in really late

160. that my son left his awesome drum kit here so I can play it

161. that my old rock band from high-school still gets together to play our high-school reunion party

162. that I live in a very sunny place

163. for Viktor and Ron and their willingness to help me out when I need it.

164. for every time my wife is cooking and says “I’m trying something different tonight.” It always leads to a delicious meal!

165. that I always remember our anniversary

166. that our family makes birthdays really special for each other

167. that we have a photographic art gallery and that we get to celebrate our member’s work there

168. that I have such a great art director for my shoots in Kalebra

169. for William C. Miller, my high school band director, who taught us much more than music.

170. that I was born and raised here

171. for Deb, John, Bob, John, Sam, and all my friends in Boston

172. for the Sci-Fi Drive-In Theatre restaurant 

173. for Frank Doorhof

174. for all the summers in Sarasota at the beach when I was growing up

175. for getting to board early

176. for Larry Grace, Ed Buice, Jay Grammond, Paul Kober, and Rob Foldy

177. for Superchargers

178. for when the dogs realize it was just a random sound and stop barking

179. for all the live concerts, Broadway shows, and performances I’ve experienced (Saw Beatlejuice the musical on Broadway this week – absolutely wonderful show).

180. for my wife’s guardian angel, who has been working overtime lately

181. for Zephyrhills bottled spring water

182. for the times my brother and I get to play golf

183. for the Genius Bar in the Apple Store 

184. for Chili’s chips and salsa

185. for how thoughtful my wife is

186. for afternoon’s at the movies

187. for the times when I could think of the perfect gift

188. for all the people who participate in my Worldwide Photo Walk and for the joy it brings me to see their smiling faces in their group shots

189. for everyone who has donated to the Springs of Hope Kenya orphanage

190. for all the wonderful gifts I treasure that Kalebra has gotten me over the years

191. for the awesome Mike Larson

192. for everybody who follows me on social media, and shares a kind word or says something nice about one of my images.

193. for every handmade birthday card my daughter has made for me

194. that my son is a way better version of me

195. for all the times when my wife knows exactly what to say and how to say it

196. that people are kind when they point out my typos on my blog

197. for my wife’s amazing homemade biscuits and the times she makes them when I’m not expecting them….like this morning.

198. that I still get to play with Scotty and Tony in a band. 

199. for how easy it was to come up with 200 things I’m grateful for

200. for God, and His Son Jesus Christ, for leading me to the woman of my dreams, for blessing us with such amazing children, for allowing me to make a living doing something I truly love, for always being there when I need Him, for blessing me with a wonderful, fulfilling, and happy life, and such a warm, loving family to share it with.

Here’s wishing you a Thanksgiving full of family, food, gratitude for our many blessings, and I hope your team wins this weekend unless you’re an Auburn fan! #rolltide! 

-Scott

That’s technically a slider. You need to order three or four. It’s a Federal law.

Hi, folks: Today is Labor Day in the US (it’s an official US holiday), and like most government offices, the KelbyOne offices are closed today so we can rest and eat hamburgers (an American Labor Day tradition). So, I’m using that loophole as a springboard for a day off!

You know what else?
Tomorrow, I’m celebrating being married 30 years to the girl of my dreams. It’s just about a perfect day! :)

So, have a great Monday everybody, and we’ll see you back here tomorrow where Dave Williams, who is British and therefore immune to US holidays like Labor Day (of course, he’d spell it Labour Day, which is as whacked as a British breakfast), will be back with his travel photography tips (he is traveling the US West right now — make sure you’re following “@capturewithdave” on Instagram).

Have a great Labor Day today. Don’t forget to rest and eat plenty of hamburgers! :-)

Best,

-Scott

P.S. We’ve already approved nearly 800 Photo Walks™ in cities all over the world as part of my 12th annual Worldwide Photo Walk. If you’re relaxing this Labor Day, why not click this link; type in the name of your city, and see if there’s a walk near you that you can join on Saturday, Oct. 5th (it’s free, it’s fun. Did I mention it’s free?)

I’ve been gone for 10-days on a family vacation with the kids to Tokyo. Incredible trip! Had an absolute ball, and the kids loved it probably more than any family trip ever. I didn’t take a lot of photos, but I got a few here and there. I haven’t had a chance to process them all, and get a SparkPage up for them yet, but hopefully soon, and I’ll post a link here.

I saw where Canon officially announced a new Canon 24-240mm RF mount lens for their new mirrorless line of cameras — B&H is taking pre-orders and I’m ordering mine this week. After lugging a 70-200mm around Tokyo for 10 days, I’m ready for one lens that does it all for travel. The price is right, too! (Supposed to be around $899). Link to it at B&H.

Who do I get a text from who is also in Tokyo at the same time? Peter Hurley! Small world, right? He was there for a sailing event, but he was arriving just as we were heading out so we didn’t get a chance to meet up. I can’t imagine what a hoot it would have been for our families to meet up for Karaoke. Next time for sure.

I’m off to Chicago and the Detroit area this week with my “Ultimate Photography Crash Course” seminar, and I saw where we’ve got over 600 photographers already signed up to come on out. Wednesday is Chicago, Thursday we’re in Livonia, Michigan — it’s not too late to come spend the day with me. Ticket and details here. Next month I’m coming to Phildelphia and Boston. Come on out.

Ya know what happens when you pack your camera gear in a rush? You wind up forgetting stuff (in my case, my 10-stop ND filter), so I wound up taking a trip to a camera store in Tokyo, only to find out later (after I bought an ND), that I didn’t forget it after all — I just misplaced it, and as it turned out I didn’t wind up using an ND the whole trip anyway. So…I guess now I have yet another back-up 10-stop ND filter for no reason. Lesson learned.

I’m two episodes behind on ‘Fear The Walking Dead’ so don’t tell me what happened on last night’s episode. Or the week before, or the Sunday before that. Same with Handmaid’s Tale.

Photoshop World Las Vegas this August is really shaping up to be a great show. I’m excited to announce a special after-hours event called “An Evening with Joe McNally” that I know is going to be the talk of the conference. What an incredible opportunity to learn from, and meet, a living legend in our industry. Also, lots of your favorite instructors are back in for Vegas — everybody from Moose Peterson to Matt Kloskowski, Dave Cross to Serge Ramelli, Robert Valenzuela to Joel Grimes, Frank Doorhof, and more. Tickets and details right here.

From another living legend: Jay Maisel:“Stephen Wilkes’ film, Jay Myself, is opening at the Film Forum in NYC on July 31. Stephen & Jay will do a Q&A at the following shows:

  • Wednesday, July 31, 7:45 show
  • Thursday, August 1, 7:45 show
  • Friday, August 2, 7:45 show
  • Saturday, August 3, 6:00 show 
  • Sunday, August 4, 4:10 show 
  • Sunday, August 4, 6:00 show

The link to buy tickets at Film Forum is right here. Please tell, or bring, your friends and family. We hope to see you there. Here’s the official trailer:

Los Angeles Opening: The film will be opening in LA at the Laemmle Royal theater beginning August 16. Stephen and Bette will be there through the 18th to do Q&A. Here’s the link to buy tickets at the Royal:

I’m still a bit jet-lagged, so I’m gonna bounce, but thanks for stopping by today, and don’t forget to catch “Travel Tuesday with Dave” here tomorrow. He’s always got some great stuff. It’s good to be back home, and back at work. We missed the doggos a lot, too. :)

Cheers,

-Scott

Hi, everybody! Sorry I’ve been so silent here on the blog for the last, or 12 days or so. I’ve been in France and London, and the pics above are from my Father’s Day dinner last night in London with my son (center) and two absolute strangers, better known as Dave Clayton and Peter Treadway. Top men for sure! Well, Dave did the whole walrus thing, but outside of that, top men.

I have so much to share…..

So many pictures and stories, but just about none of it is ready (I still have a ton of images to go through, and a Spark page to create, and hopefully I’ll have all that on Friday with any luck).

We had some blue sky and sunshine in London. Hey, it happens. ;-)

Had an awesome dinner with old friends and even made some new ones. :) From Back to Front: Piotr in the very back. Richard O’Keefe, Me, Jordan, Brigitte and Ben Gathercole-Day, Peter Treadway, and Brian Worley.

Spent a glorious Day with Dave Williams

Yes, that Dave. The “Capture with Dave” Dave. The Dave of “Travel Tuesdays with Dave,” Dave. We shot all over town; had a marvelous burger at “Honest Burger” and just generally had a ball. Dave is a boss! In fact, he has “the keys to London.” (wink).

Dave posing in front of the restaurant named after his nickname “St. Paul” named thus for his year after year inability to get me in to shoot inside St. Paul’s Cathedral, despite the fact that he’s done it himself, and sent me his great pics to shame me.
That’s me and Claire, Her Royal Awesomeness. I took the train to Ely to shoot the wonderful cathedral there with her, and we had such an epic day. Claire is the best! :)
We had lunch in a proper pub. It was yummy. Cricket was on TV. I don’t know what to say after that, but lunch was great; we had lots of laughs, and it was really fun shooting in the cathedral. It would be, once again, the only cathedral I would shoot within England (see how I managed to get a Dave jab in there? It’s a gift).

Le Mimo!

I got to spend a week in France with one of my favorite people — Mimo Meidany. Incredible photographer. Long exposure master. Composition master. Yes, all of the those, but one of the nicest guys on the planet, too. My son and I loved getting to hang out with him (it was my son’s first time meeting him, and he’s a Mimo fan now, too!).

OK, I gotta run. I am heading home today, and I’ll catch you up on all the other stuff soon, but I just wanted to let you know where I’ve been, and that I’m heading home. Can’t wait to see my girls! (Kalebra, Yittle, Maggie and Maki). :)

Cheers, and we’ll talk soon. :)

-Scott

Greetings from 31,000 feet. I’m on my Delta flight home from Minneapolis, where this week between Indy and Minne I kicked off my new full-day seminar “The Ultimate Photography Crash Course” to more than 450 photographers (and some really incredibly nice folks. I love the Midwest!). I had such a great time, and I was thrilled at how well the new seminar was received.

I met so many great folks — people really into photography and Photoshop and Lightroom — my kinda folks. Thank you all for the warm welcome and gracious hospitality.

Yesterday I got to take a day off to go shooting

I spent the day with my new buddy, Minnesotan photographer Jay Grammond, and despite the cold (Brrrr!) and wind (Brrrrr!) and rain (Brrrr!), we still had a fun day shooting everything from the nation’s third-largest cathedral to the gorgeous Minnesota State Captial building; from a classic old research Library to just an incredible little chapel whose architecture was inspired by the Hagia Sofia Mosque (now a museum) in Istanbul, Turkey. Just amazing!

My Playpod sure got a workout that day, and nobody batted an eye at it. Security guard after a security guard saw me using it, and none of them ever said a word. I was able to put it in all sorts of places. Thanks, Jay for a really fun day! I haven’t had a chance to edit the images yet, but I’ll share ’em as soon as I get ’em done.

Had a great dinner with some friends from Adobe

A lot of Adobe’s Lightroom engineering folks are based in Minneapolis, and I had literally my best dinner of the year. The food was amazing and the company even better. Shout out to Jeff, Jon, and Julie — just awesome folks.

OK, we’ve been cleared for landing.

This weekend we’re having a graduation party for my son Jordan — super psyched about that! Gonna work a bit on my new book (it’s a natural light portrait book), and watch another big episode of Game of Thrones. It’s gonna be a great weekend! Hope yours is, too! Gotta run — wheels down, flaps down — it’s good to be home! :)

Cheers,

Scott

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