Welcome and Goodbye to Fall

Living in the Midwest, we really do have one of the most iconic Fall times in all of the World…at least in my opinion. That is, as long as it doesn’t last a week.

This year, we were truly blessed with an honest-to-goodness FALL Fall. One with cool temperatures, turning leaves, light winds, and plenty of cider. One that even impressed me (I am a well documented fan of Spring over Fall, as I hate Winter so much),

Sometimes you don’t even have to go that far, a great photo is right around the corner.

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A New Trick on an Old Photo

I think one of the best things about having SO many photos in your bank is that you can go back to photos you took years ago, learn something new, and apply it to them like I have done here.

This photo was taken a few years back in San Diego – which by they way is a town I would LOVE to see again – and re-edited with some new techniques I never really thought about before.

Now, I got to relive the glory of this trip with this amazing shot.

Long story short; sometimes those random videos and tutorials you find on YouTube can actually really inspire you. Just don’t talk so fast.

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Back To Vector

Back to the basics! Or, well, vector art. Something I haven’t done in a bit it seems.

Vector wasn’t always my strong suit, but it is something I always have fun doing. My designs are always simples, sometimes not even having any shadow depth (as you can see above), which is on purpose. A lot of my work feels like a design you’d see on a patch. But you know what? I like it, and that’s what matters.

Remember; if you’re the person who says “That art is dumb and easy, I could do that.”

Then do it!

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For the Love of Sepia Tone

There is not much more I love than sepia tone.

Besides my family and dogs.

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Pickin’ in the Midwest

Sometimes, there is nothing better than a muggy, Midwestern day. Picking apples in the Ohio heat, and not seeing another person for hours.

I always loved parks, fields, forests – something that is luckily in abundance in Ohio, something we really don’t appreciate as much as we should.

Everyone loves a good Honeycrisp.

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Chalk It Up

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A Fond Path In Westcreek

Sometimes I don’t even remember the place, just the fun I had.

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Round Earth

Trying my hand at vector design again. Every once in a while I get some inspiration.

Today was that day.

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Like A Desktop Wallpaper

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Essential Thoughts From A Non-Essential

Over the last year, I have been way more introspective than I have ever been in my life – thinking about, questioning, and sometimes even regretting every decision I have ever made, and every accomplishment.

I have mentally been in a funk, sometimes finding it hard to be as creative as I normally am, hitting mental roadblocks and criticizing the work I have done way more than I normally do. I knew it was unhealthy, and I knew I was being too rough on myself, but I could never really pinpoint where it was all coming from. Why I felt like I was achieving nothing of importance, even though I knew myself how hard I have worked.

But eventually, things became clearer, I thought about it a little more and spoke with people around me. I eventually came to the conclusion that the label of “non-essential” I was given truly did affect me more than I ever realized. It seeped into my inner dialogue more than I even knew myself, and made me feel like what I was doing wasn’t of value.

From the start, and even now, I understand why this happened, why the labels came about, and why they themselves were “essential.” However, and as with most things, I don’t think we really truly realized the mental toll that alone would put on people in both categories. The stress of having to work in a pandemic, and also those – like myself – who were placed in the non-essential category suddenly being told why they did was an afterthought.

I have been in radio, published a book, sold photos to stock image companies, and have started a number of podcasts. However, because of the “non-essential” tag, I suddenly felt a sense of worthlessness. A wave of “well why am I even doing this” flooded over me, and I was unable – until recently – to swim my way back to get air.

And I am not alone.

College taught me what I know about the technical side of my career. How to write, broadcast, take photos, illustrate, and become a more creative person. But it took a pandemic to teach me that the world thinks a little bit differently about the things I produce, and the work I create.

But I know my worth, and if you’re a creative, or a “non-essential,” you should too, You need to know that you have value, from the very top, to the very bottom.

While I truly understand that some careers are more key to the continuation of our community, I will never again think of myself, or anyone else for that matter, as “non-essential.”

We all need each other, no matter how big or small. And while I will never find a cure for a disease, keep a supply chain alive, or even solve a crime – I feel, and know, I can bring things to the table that are just important to the world – even if no one cares but me.

I will forever be the person to keep creating, working, and producing things I hope others will enjoy. I will continue to believe that what I do is important, no matter how many times someone tells me it isn’t.

And to me, that’s essential.

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