DJI Mavic Pro – Toy or Tool?

mavic1On Tuesday, September 27, drone powerhouse DJI announced a game-changing drone to the world.  It is the DJI Mavic Pro.  Some have called it an “Adventure Drone,” which I think fits it very well.  It is a drone with the same intelligence as their larger models (Phantom 4) but folds up to a size not much larger than an iPhone 7+ box.  What this means is that it is something you can nearly put in your pocket.  Even the remote is smaller than an iPhone 7, and has a range of up to 4.6 miles.

The question, however, is this a tool or a toy?

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I broke 2 of my photography rules this weekend…

Yep.  I did.  And not the kinds of rules one generally thinks of when it comes to photography.  I still follow the Rule of Thirds for composition, Framing, Background and so forth.  No, I broke my personal rules.

  1. Do not shoot weddings or portraits – price yourself out of the ballpark so they would be insane to hire you and you would be insane to turn it down.
  2. Do not shoot weddings or portraits for family members.

I did both.  I shot my sister’s wedding this past weekend.  If it were anyone else, it would have been an emphatic hell no, or $15,000.  She’s family, and my mom and she both applied the guilt trip and all, and got me in a moment of weakness.  I will say, however, never again.  It was a frustrating day/evening that left me working on a day I should have been able to enjoy with my family, rather than being an outsider looking in through glass…

That’s a Wrap!

So, Louisville’s 48 Hour Film Festival was shot over last weekend.  We started at 7:00 pm Friday night and turned in just after the deadline (technical issues) on Sunday night.  We had a great time with the whole process.  As with all the others I have done it was exciting, exhaust, fun and frustrating, painful and ecstatic.  Yes, it really was all those things.  You really do run the full range of emotional and physical stress as you try and compress what should take weeks to accomplish into all of 48 hours.  Read on to see a synopses of the project.

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Upcoming Schedule

Yep, it is getting to be that time again.  Spring is turning into summer way too quickly, yet again.  In just a few short weeks my “busy” season starts.  This coming weekend is the start to Derby Week here in Louisville, KY.  Events every day leading up to the running of the Kentucky Derby.  Followed by a weekend off, then a Cabin Weekend (those who know, know) and then a weekend off and then Memorial Day weekend.  Continue reading

Meet Dracolich


Microsoft Surface Pro 2

So I picked up a new computer/tablet.  Did I need another tablet seeing as how I have an iPad?  No.  Did I need another computer seeing as how I have a very good MacBook Pro?  No.  Is it more than a cool new toy to configure and play with?  Yes.  It is like the red-headed stepchild of my home technology bundle.  It is the only Microsoft Windows device in my house right now.  And that is OK.  Meet Dracolich, my Microsoft Surface Pro 2.

It will be taking the place of nothing, replacing nothing.  It will be adding to my growing list of gadgets that I have for specific purposes.  It has already shown itself to be quite capable and as it is a full computer, rather than a tablet running on a separate OS, I can install anything on it I would install on any other Windows computer.  I realize my whole house and entertainment center is Mac OSX oriented.  And  that isn’t changing.  I have already installed Plex on Dracolich so I can stream movies to it as well.  I have most of the apps on my iPad and iPhone replicated that I would want, so the rest is to be basically Windows 8.1.

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New Travel Case

I did a short writeup of my small go case for computing, now here is the large go case for computing.  This will be short, as I have not had a chance to really put it to use yet.  I bought this on faith that it would fit my MBP. Everything about this case was mobility for me and being able to take my full kit with me, both my still camera kit and my video cameras (GoPro and a small Sony.) I was also able to include my whole iPad kit in TwelveSouth’s Book Book. It is probably going to be my last case. I cannot wait until my next trip to really put it to use. I would recommend this to anyone who needs a good really throw-around travel case. And It will be very TSA friendly, since everything is easily accessible and fully protected. This is typical of every Pelican case I have ever used.  More info and photo after break.

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So, I just added another piece to my media gear.  Seagate Wireless Hard Drive, 1 TB.  Purpose?  Simple – carry my movies around so I can watch any of them at any time.  Makes my 32 GB iPad virtually limitless when it comes to storage.  Add the Zagg Spark 2 and the battery life for the hard drive approaches 24 hours.  Since I have the 32 GB iPad rather than the 64 GB version, I have had to be careful about how much I put on it.  Balance the movies with the games and whatnot.  Not anymore.  I can stream right off the HD and it takes no room on the iPad.  OR, I can copy a movie over once and watch it then delete it, saving up battery life on the drive.  Best of all, no need to sync with iTunes to cue up movies.

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New Photo Sharing Site

So, after pretty much throwing off photo sharing websites due to constant “back patting” and “fluff-bunny critiques” I decided to try a new one out.  So far it seems to be on the same caliber as Vimeo (, which I use for my videos.  Check out my stuff there and see what you think. and

Deckyon on 500px

Videos from KYHRF

It is that time of year again.  Ky Highland Renaissance Fair is in full swing, having just opened up last weekend (May 30/31).  As most know, I am the official photographer there, and now, I have added Video to the mix.  The videos from this past weekend are in the process of getting converted and uploaded.  Considering this was the first weekend working with the hand-made “Steadicam” mount, you will need to forgive the shaky-cam as I get used to using the camera.  Taking a tripod this weekend for the shows.  Below is the link.  Keep in mind, this is a work in progress and videos will be uploaded as I have time.  Keep checking back.