I spent my early childhood in rural southwest Virginia. Fifteen-cent chili dogs are one of the fondest memories of my childhood. There were two places to get good ones (as far as I knew at age six). The first was the “Friendly Inn,” run by a friend of the familyContinue Reading

When plotting the yard, I had two goals in mind. The first was figuring out where the sun would hit between March 21 and September 21. The second was trying to figure out what plants could coexist in terms of water needs, sunlight, colors, and textures. The yard is small,Continue Reading

My first grownup camera was a Minolta SR-T 101 bought in a pawn shop with money saved doing college work-study jobs. That was 40 plus years ago. I loved that camera, and my affinity and affection for Minolta have never waned. So, when I decided to buy a camera, IContinue Reading

As I write this, it’s late winter, mid-March. The garden is half green, half brown. The coneflowers and daylilies are up much sooner than is good. Already I’ve had to cover them from frost three times, and more times seem likely. Even the fern buds are up. Over the pastContinue Reading

The idea of having a front-yard garden hit me around the time I realized that periwinkle would not likely work any better than ivy. Periwinkle had been my safety choice. When that fell through, desperation set in, and the idea of having a garden slowly took hold, despite the lackContinue Reading

Looking through a viewfinder somehow changed my perspective. It’s difficult to explain how or why. In fact, I don’t think I can. What gives a situation or a scene or a thing significance? Why does a collection of objects or a location caught at a specific point in time haveContinue Reading

On a typical miserably hot July day, the third summer of the garden, I was pulling black-eyed Susans out of the coneflowers and pincushions. (Black-eyed Susans spread like a virus and will fill any available space, but that is a story for another day.) An older gentleman walked by andContinue Reading

Pick up a camera, shoot some film, and it will soon become apparent that reproducing on film what you imagine before firing the shutter is not a simple task. Two sets of concepts and principles have to be mastered to do photography well. First, one must learn the technical/mechanical aspects—camera,Continue Reading