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Static on multiple fronts

Folks, first I want to offer up an apology. I’ve been meaning to write more than a few people in the past few days. Unfortunately, days have become weeks and still I’m falling behind. Between lack of time to write at home and a deep sense of mental exhaustion, the words have simply not been flowing.

Heat
The last month here has been nothing less than nasty here in North Alabama. It’s been over 90 degrees every day here since July 2nd. For the past two weeks, it’s gotten above 96 every day. When you factor in humidity, it’s been miserable with a heat index in the 100+ range. At the beginning of this heat wave, our air conditioning unit started slowly failing. The fan assembly broke down and was barely circulating air. We were lucky it didn’t fail completely, but it was hard to keep the house below 80. After two weeks, multiple calls and several visits by the landlord’s approved technicians, and replacement of the blower, the system finally works.

The heat’s put a damper on outdoor activities and caused me to cancel or pare back outdoor photography activities. Until the heat wave breaks, I will not attempt to conduct outdoor photo sets except before 10am or after 7pm. It also means that most SCA is out of the question for us. Safety is more important.

Work
Since getting back from the work related travels in June, I’ve been finding myself increasingly taking a management role in things. It’s not been planned. It’s just sorta happened. I was assigned to help out with a test and found that the execution team was spread over several missions and deadlines were approaching rapidly. I soon found myself directing fellow contractors to make sure various functions and tasks were being completed. Throughout this, I’ve asked the management if this was the job they wanted me t do and received multiple affirmatives. I’ve apparently impressed them. I’ve been asked to travel to California again to attend a planning meeting with the major players in the test. I’m working my tail off in support of this and being noticed I hope.

Blacklist (B’ham)
Heat and hard work, meant it was time to party. Since I’ve missed the energy and vigor of Sleep When You’re Dead, I was excited to have the schedule clear for “Blacklist” in Birmingham. I’d missed the first show in July, but August looked to be a great show with “Miss FD” (Fright Doll) playing darkwave and electronica. Tammy and I dressed out for the night and drove down with great anticipation. When we got into town, we discovered the address for “The High Note” was wrong (north versus south street address) so we headed further south across downtown. OK, in all respect to the organizers, it’s hard finding good locations, but wow. This venue was awful. The air conditioning was not just turned down, it was probably turned off. The sound system was dorked up and the attitude of the bar staff (not the organizers) less than welcoming. To the promoters’ credit, they tried their best to make it work and have apologized to participants and guests alike. While I want to go back, their next show is scheduled the same weekend as DragonCon. I hope the event finds its footing. I’m willing to give them another try, but not in that venue.

DragonCon
Speaking of DragonCon, the family is getting really excited. It appears that this year will be mainly Chris and I roaming together while Brenna will be hanging out with the Revenger crew. Tammy can’t go due to work and there’s no way I’m taking the 5 year old solo. We’re staying at a hotel on the north side of Atlanta and will drive in and out. It’s cheaper and it will certainly be quieter at night. Although I’m going to bring my camera, I’m not planning to shoot shows and will limit myself to costumes and such. I think the biggest thing is realizing my limitations on editing time and wanting to relax and enjoy the event. Panels, shows, shopping and no 20 lb camera bag, sounds nice. I’m looking forward to meeting “Twisted Doll” during the Con at some point. She’s a model I’ve been corresponding with for some time. I still don’t know whether or not I’m even going to dress out that much.

Steampunk
A year or so ago, I would never have considered this but I believe I’m going to curtail and even back away from some folks in the local steam community. I recognize the drama llamas gathering in some respects and I just don’t want or need the fluff. If I’m needed, then I’m quite sure I’ll make myself a bit more available.
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Part 2 to make it friendly to friendly pages..

Music on the personal level
Buying the Sirius Radio has been one of the best entertainment investments in a while. THe selection of music, comedy and news has been refreshing compared to the local radio.

Chris’s Mp3 player and replacement
After almost two years, Chris’s Mp3 player died following his trip to the UK. The battery failed and it dumped the firmware. It was built like most players. The battery on most of these will only last for 2 to 3 years. He got a lot out of that one. I replaced it with a Philips Songbird (4Mb). Initially I bought him an iPod Shuffle (same cost) but it wouldn’t hold as much music. He seems to like it so far though I’m a little stunned by how slow it was to sync up to the playlist he has. I’m pleasantly surprised at how well and how long my iPod has lasted. While it’s showing wear, I have the feeling that it has a bit more life left to it.

Clockwork Cotillion )
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Model Photography – Organic Armor Set (Apr 2010)

Some of you will recall my post about being banned from shooting in the Flying Monkey Art Center. Since I’ve been blocked from promoting or earning any money from my artistic skills there, I haven’t gone back to shop or view shows there. Of course, being out of town as much as I have has made that simple. I still haven’t decided how or if to approach the “ladies” responsible for my situation, but I thought that it was time to finally show off some of the shots.

I had the pleasure of doing a commercial promotional shoot back in April. The premise was simple. Two professional models (& friends), a costumer, a visiting steampunk band and I as photographer; would exchange our time and skills to produce a set of images we could all use. This was a multi-party TFP set where everyone would benefit. OA supplied the amazing bras, hats and wrist bands/chokers displayed in various photos. These are some of the results:


Murder Doll (seated) and Lindsey Porcellyne

Dangerous Ladies & Victorian Misfits )
jjmaccrimmon: (Me - Sloss Steam)
For those of you not following individual blogs from the band members, Finn Von Claret, the female vocalist of Abney Park has announced that she is leaving the band. As an accomplished dancer and choreographer, she has started what will most certainly be a successful dance company in Seattle.

Robert’s Announcement
http://robert-from-ap.livejournal.com/594232.html

Finn’s Announcement
http://vonclaret.net/2009/08/a-lady-always-knows-when-to-leave/#more-379

Nothing was announced on the Abney Park Community or the Abney Park website
http://community.livejournal.com/abneypark or the band's myspace as of last night.

Finn will be the third female singer/performer/dancer to leave the group. The original female voice was Traci Nemeth who was replaced by the amazing Magdalene Veen (http://magdaleneveen.livejournal.com). Now that Finn has left they have brought in an amazing belly dancer “Najla” (http://www.raqsnajla.com/), but can she sing? For that matter is it a requirement?

Given Finn’s announcement and the comments of Magdalene Veen, is there an undercurrent? I’ve noticed that AP has steadily moved away from having a female performer with strong vocal abilities. I so hope that whoever joins the band can compliment the musical skills and character of Abney Park versus being window dressing. In reading the Craigslist ad, I really don’t know what to think.

http://seattle.craigslist.org/see/tlg/1317929177.html

Since several of the band members are on my friends list as real friends, I’m hoping to learn more.
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A few weeks ago, Arientte and I got together to shoot some test images for reference and check what colors and backgrounds would work the best. The original plan was to shoot inside Lincoln Mill and work with the historic 3rd floor. The heat and humidity made that very unpleasant after only a few minutes. Instead we went down to the recently gutted powerplant at the mill and used that to highlight her steampunk costume.



[6 behind the cut] A rising star )
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In what was merely supposed to be a small meet & greet gathering of folks interested or involved in the steampunk community, 40 to 50 folks showed up at a quiet suburban home outside Birmingham, AL to pontificate and ponder future projects and projections proposed. People came from as far as Jackson, Ms; Tallahassee, FL; and Chattanooga, TN. What would a steampunk gathering be without photos.



”Outdoor )
jjmaccrimmon: (Default)
Had a tremendous weekend. I got to spend Friday with Wendy and relaxed a bit. Saturday, I drove down to Birmingham to meet with lovely model before going to a steampunk meet-up. The drive down was something of a challenge. A series of storms were dumping massive amounts of rain along the interstate. In several places the road was flooded. When I got down there, the meeting went really well. I've got a good feeling about this person. Come to think of it, the last few models (male and female) I've met with have given me a seriously good feeling about working with them. They've been thoughtful, creative about ways to enhance shoots and ask questions about how and what to do.

Anyhow, after the meeting, I drove out to Trussville to meet up with the rapidly growing Steampunk 'community' in Alabama. That's really not entirely accurate. There were folks there from Tennessee, Mississippi, Florida and Georgia. There were between 40 to 50 people at the gather that was one part introductions, one part photo shoot and one part social mayhem. What was only to be 3 hours, became 4 hours of fun.

After meeting with these fun folks, I met up with [livejournal.com profile] martinhesselius, [livejournal.com profile] leliel, and was followed over by [livejournal.com profile] sabre0link for BBQ at the Golden Rule in downtown. We chatted, joked and nibbled for nearly 2 hours. Great times!

Today I got to sleep in which helped for the photo shoot that I'd had scheduled for today. Husband and wife team who wanted to do a horror themed shoot along the lines of Silent Hill. At Lincoln Mill, I set up one of the rooms with some of the medical gear stored at the site and turned it into a surgical suite (gurney, monitors, IV stand, blood pressure measure and more). There was even a working surgical light there. We shot about 250 images over several hours. The shoot was a physical challenge because the area we worked in has no air conditioning (90F/34C & high humidity inside). We didn't care. It was worth it.
jjmaccrimmon: (Me - Sloss Steam)
Sasha and I journeyed over to Huntsville, Alabama's historic train depot and did a steampunk set several weeks ago. These are some of the highlights.

Note: The model is a minor and all photos were taken with parental permission.


Ripples and Curls

On a Steelhorse.. [7 images behind the cut] )
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Here's a preview from my recent shoot with Sasha Spitfire in Huntsville.
jjmaccrimmon: (Default)


Cullman - 2009

and an announcement!

On Saturday May 30th, I will be displaying a number of pieces of my Abandoned Americanna photos. The showing will be in conjunction with The Clockwork Cottillian, at the Historical Donnell House in Athens, AL. The photo and linkie below says it all.

are you coming?

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