Polly Wants a Cracker.

Maintaining any semblance of minimalism is difficult in 2011. At the moment my studio feels like the shipping department for Sears Canada, because I have received a new shipment of work from Paderno and am receiving new technology for the studio based on my long-term learning plan. New hard drives, more RAM, a killer EIZO display, a Blue microphone, Microsoft Office 2011, Roxio Toast 11 and a copy of Disk Warrior have all arrived to leave me with more cardboard boxes than you would want to see.

Another purchase I needed to make was a real rack unit to hold my audio recording gear, and to store my small vinyl collection. I decided to go with Marathon cases because they just seemed like their matte black finish would work within a photography setting. Why do I have a recording studio? About once a year I get a small job to record a track for a friend or to work on some video and the ProTool kit really makes that possible on a professional level.

I still have bronchitis. I sound like a two pack smoker and I am exhausted. Still, as I look at the Peru photographs I feel like the strain was worth it in the long haul. It was not worth it in the short haul, but few things are. On the travel front, V. and I decided to go with tickets into Madrid and out of Barcelona in August. There is just nothing out there this season in South America [we had both wanted to go back to Peru and into Bolivia], and Asia was getting pricier each day. Our plan is to see Spain on the front and back ends of the trip, while we hook up with a tour through Morocco in the middle: Casablanca, Marrakech, Fez. I am excited about the journey as there will be the easy of Europe and the hard of the Sahara. I needed a bit of a break, and a trip that will keep me in balance at the end of the summer.

Sifting through the Peru photographs has me wishing that the Canon 300mm f.4 was a little sharper, and that the Hasselblad SWC/M was a little easier to use. In the end, the wildlife shots turned out pretty good, and certain give a sense of what the Amazon has in terms of colours. The macaws were so strange to see in the wild. I do not think that I could ever get used to seeing birds like that on my daily travels around home. The blues, golds, greens and reds were so deep and magical.

The praying mantis hitched a ride on our boat. With a lack of river dolphins I decided to focus on this little guy until the river opened up. I must have spent three to five days trying to get one decent shot of a kingfisher. They move so fast and are constantly trying to stay ahead of the boats that I never really came close until my last day out. I am jealous of the photographers who have the patience and resilience to just sit for weeks waiting for that one animal shot of a lifetime; be it a lion or a panther or a simple frog. Not me, not my suit.

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