I meant to get some more writing done this week on the blog, but between work and the room of death, I simply ran out of time. The photo at right shows the pile of boxes I’ve moved out of the room in search of the floor, which I’ve actually found (for those curious, that’s 59 boxes). They’re currently living in the room we call the library with the treadmill and the cat box.

Still to do are seven boxes of hockey jerseys, six boxes of books, and 8 boxes of ancient VHS tapes that are going to be landfilled since there’s no useful purpose to them and it’s unlikely they’re usable even if we had a way to play them. And then there are two sets of filing cabinets (probably another 12 boxes) of Laurie’s hockey program collection and research material that’ll be boxed for now until we get this all sorted out and can get stuff into their new home (the hockey stuff will ultimately live where those boxes in the library currently are).

it’s going to take me at least a week to get there, because this week is also in-office meetings for my team at work, and so I’m going to be actually driving to a building to work instead of wandering to my desk, and they’re going to be full days.

So I’m guessing another 10 days and then I can get quotes on paint and carpet, and once I start bringing in people to do those things, it’ll be other people’s deadlines and I’ll be back to focus on writing.

Two interesting bits of personal history have been unearthed: my box of photography from my film era, which I’ve done a little poking at, and most of my writing archives, including copies of all of the magazines my book review column was in back in the day. I have no idea if I am going to consider putting all that online or not; if I do, it’ll be well down the road.

Getting this room ready for me to move into is just step one of some long anticipated work in the house, where we (finally) get the living room finished up and painted, which is where many of the books that were in the room of death belong instead of in boxes. I’d built in about 90 linear feet of book cases before things stalled, and once we get those painted and books moved onto them, a lot of the chaos will get removed.

But there are still 2-3 months before that happens, I think. Depends on when I can find the right person to come in and finish a bit of carpentry and some wall patching and get things ready for the painter. I’ll be exploring that with the painters I expect to use when I bring them in to quote the office. And the new carpeting, the electrician to run the new circuit in there, and then new blinds.

then carpet and paint for our bedroom, and then carpet and paint for the media area (and my current office), and then after that, sorting out the library and Laurie’s office. And then some day, the bathrooms (one minor tweaking, one probably a major redo) and the kitchen. ugh.

And somewhere along the way, I’ll get the blog going again. I’ve got at least eight pieces waiting for me to find time to finish them, so it’s not for lack of things to chat about.

About work

I’m going on two months at the new job, and I’m really liking it and the people. Lots to do, and I keep finding more stuff to add to the list, which isn’t surprising, and we’re starting to show the first things getting finished, which I love. The publishing system is built around markdown and Jekyll, and I’ve spent the last week digging into that and trying to figure out how to make things a bit more user friendly and so I’m building a plan to improve it.

So all things considered, I’m happy where things are. The projects I needed to take on are showing traction, and I haven’t been fired yet. Not bad at all.

The Youtube channel

As you can probably guess, my work on this project has just stalled. I’ve been poking around the edges of it to figure out how to get it moving forward, but I’m running into that wonderful “it all sucks, why bother?” voice in the back of the head as well. What I really need to do is get back to getting videos produced so I can launch, but something tells me it isn’t likely to move forward much until I’ve moved into the new office, but we’ll see.

And interesting side effect of this: I’ve had to go and take a close look at how I’ve been processing my images, and as I took it apart to figure out how to explain it to others, there were a bunch of places where my processing style basically could be described as “well, this is good enough”. Which is in reality not good enough, and so if nothing else, this process has made me go back and reinvent my Lightroom work some, and the end results are noticabely improved to me.

Compare, for instance, my old version of this image with the same image reprocessed using my evolved technique:

Immature Golden Eagle in Flight, Coyote Valley, San Jose, California

This is, to me, pretty good.

Immature Golden Eagle in Flight, Coyote Valley, San Jose, California

But taking a close look at it and processing it more thoughtfully? I’m much happier with the result.

One negative side of this? I’m finding I want to go back and reprocess a lot of images, and over time, I will, but, well, I don’t have a lot of free time, and…

So I’m being very careful about diving into a reprocessing project right now, while studying how others are doing this and understanding where my technique was falling short and how to improve it. My sharpening practices are completely changed, and for the better.

Which I guess I can use to say that the lesson is that there are always ways you can improve yourself as a photography, and it’s amazing where you find you’ve fallen into lazy habits when you look at your work with a fresh and critical eye.

More soon(ish?), once that room is completely empty.