Friday, August 10, 2012

Photojournalism Back to School Checklist

In recent months life has taken over and the blog has languished.  I apologize for not having regular posts, but things are about to change dramatically.  At the end of the month, I become a student once again and join the talented people at the Corcoran College of Art and Design in the New Media Photo Journalism masters program.  There is no doubt this experience will provide plenty of material to write about. Over the next two years I intend to share my experiences and photographic projects.

Later this morning, I will be trudging through the rain soaked streets of Washington DC to the Corcoran Gallery to get my student ID - that will make it official, and add yet another ID card to my already bulging wallet.  The last time I carried a student ID was 14 years ago as I was completing my doctoral program in Environmental and Energy Management at GWU.  However, this ID is much more valuable; I need to upgrade several software packages, and the student discounts are quite handy!

On the other hand, the "back to school shopping list" is a bit pricey:

  • Canon 5D MK III; $3500 (I will start with my 5D, but I can dream!)
  • Full lens kit; $3000+ (already set - whew!)
  • Flash kit; $1000 (got it!)
  • MacBook Pro; $2500 (already in the kit thanks to my lovely wife)
  • iPad; $500 (who takes notes on paper any more?)
  • Motorcycle; $3000 - parking in Georgetown really sucks, therefore a great excuse for a bike!
  • Software; $??? (still holding off to see what is required)
  • Lots of time; this could be a challenge - I'm already holding down 5 jobs, continue to work on my next food and wine pairing book, and still want to golf three times a week - I don't intend on giving up anything until it becomes painful.
As you might imagine, a degree in photojournalism is dominated with courses on writing and photography.  The schedule for this semester includes Story and Narrative, Photojournalism Seminar I, Advanced Multi-media, and Research, Writing and Reporting.  I am excited to get started!

The last time I was a student, I was excited not so much because of the work, but because it gave me a mid-career break from normal US Coast Guard duties and gave me dedicated time to focus on the course work.  It was fun, professionally enhancing, and rejuvenating.  This time I am gushing at the thought of enjoying a program that precisely fits my interests.  As I have told my friends, even if this program does not lead to a new career, I am anticipating the enjoyment of the experience.  I will be shooting, writing and sharing my time with talented like minded people - I love it!

For now, I am off to get my sparkling new student ID.  Have fun, and go make some great photography.


Sunday, August 5, 2012

John Deere Train at 2012 Saint Mary's County Crab Festival

The Saint Mary's Crab Festival held at the Saint Mary's County fairgrounds features a static display of John Deere toys.  The display is enormous and represents what must be years of collecting.  I am not a personal fan of collecting things - I am predisposed to simplifying my life by getting rid of things than collecting them.  However, this collection of John Deere toys is quite impressive.

Have fun and go make some great photography.