December 2nd, 2020
I used to be a music director on a cruise ship. Covid-19 started to get very bad in the states in late March, 2020 and many people that work on cruise ships lost our jobs. No one knew how long we would be out a of a job. We were hopeful and optimistic but then many months went by and we all had to start thinking of finding other ways to make money. I started my online photography business DavidMoreheadPhotography.com and been having a lot of fun doing it. Never in my life did I think that I would stop being a musical director on a ship. I loved that job. It was the perfect job for me. I love to travel and take pictures. Covid-19 has prevented almost all ships from sailing with guests so we entertainers that worked on ships had to come up with another plan to survive. So many other people in other professions are going through the same thing. I have been using this time to learn so many new things. I am learning Photoshop, Lightroom, video editing, marketing, Facebook and Instagram algorithms, vegan cooking and more. I know our job on a ship will come back some day. In the mean time, I will continue to keep learning new skills and enjoy getting a different perspective on life. Tomorrow I go back to creating more Christmas cards and taking more photos for my site. :) Stay healthy everyone and maybe I will see you on a cruise ship someday. :)
November 11th, 2020
I was shopping at Walmart a few days ago and I saw this nice Christmas scene they have for sale. I took a pic of it with my Galaxy S9 plus phone so I could use it to practice using Photoshop. Unfortunately I cannot sell what I made because this is someone's else's design and I am sure it is copyrighted. Maybe someday I will get good enough with Photoshop to create my own scenes. Photoshop is a very powerful program. I am really enjoying learning how to use it.
November 9th, 2020
I took a pic of this autumn scene in Lyons Woods (in Waukegan Illinois) about a week ago. I was imagining what it would look like with snow. I started to look on YouTube for ways to create snow and eventually I found a way that wasn't too complicated. I am just learning Photoshop so I need to keep things pretty simple until I know the program better.
Doing projects like this is a great way to learn Photoshop. I will continue to learn Photoshop and maybe one day I will be able to do what I want without having to follow a tutorial. :) Thankfully there are so many great teachers willing to make videos and upload them to YouTube. It is an amazing opportunity to learn from the pros.
November 5th, 2020
I usually never use on-camera flash. It is too harsh for most subjects. I did some experimenting with it yesterday when there wasn't a lot of light available coming from the sun.
I set my camera to manual using a fast shutter speed (around 160th of a second ), set my aperture to around F11 to get more depth of field and set my on-camera flash to + 3 exposure. I was hoping the flash was powerful enough to reach the leaves up in the tree and the fast shutter speed would make the background darker so the leaves would stand out more. It worked. The sky was actually brighter than this but the faster shutter speed made it a beautiful dark blue. I will be using the on-camera flash more at night. It can get some interesting results.
October 28th, 2020
My mom used to love feeding the animals in her back yard. She would throw peanuts out the back door and usually a squirrel would come and get them. This time someone got there before them. :) Thankfully I had my camera (with a zoom lens on it) near by so I could get a pic of the infamous early bird. I think I took the photo through glass. The bird would have flown away if I tried to open the glass back door.
October 23rd, 2020
I wasn't going to go out of the house yesterday and then I looked out the back door and saw it was foggy. It was close to sunset so I had to hurry and get my camera to go out and take some pics before it got too dark.
I didn't have time to go far so a I went to Shiloh park (Zion, Illinois) which is about about a mile from where I live. It is full of trees and some of the trees have colorful leaves because it is autumn now in the Chicago area. This was one of my favorites from yesterday. Hope you like it. Sometimes the best shots are close to home. Especially when there is fog. I am hoping for many more foggy days. They make driving harder but they are great for taking photos.
September 20th, 2020
One of my favorite antique stores is in Volo, Illinois. They have several buildings filled with antiques from many different vendors. One of the buildings is an old barn with three floors.
It is a great place to practice taking pictures. So many interesting subjects.
I had to spend a little time to get this shot. The figurine was sitting back on the shelf so I had to move it to the edge to be able to get this angle with out the shelf blocking the view. I used a large aperture for two reasons. One reason is there is not a lot of light in the store so a large aperture lets in a lot of light so you don't have to raise your ISO. The second reason was I wanted to get a very shallow depth of field to accentuate the boy at the bottom of the figurine.
Volo Antique Mall is a family business started by "Go Go" Gert Grams and William Grams Sr.
Gert's high fashion style envisioned, repurposed shabby chic, and an appreciation of vintage and antiques before it was cool. They have had generations of motivated sellers that helped to build their business as it stands today.
Their laid back, yet upbeat atmosphere, is welcoming to all ages. They have décor that can suit the style of any era.
They have seven miles of aisles. This place is huge. 4 different buildings are connected with hallways.
The Volo 4 Antique Malls have been in business for over 25 years. They are internationally known and have been featured on Discovery Channel and soon will be on The History Channel. They aren't your stuffy grandma’s mall; They are your cool grandma’s mall.
It's a great place to bring your family and friends or go by yourself to get away for some personal time. You can stay all day if you wish. There is no admission for the malls and there is plenty of free parking.
If you love antiques this is a must see when you are in the Chicago area.
They also have an amazing antique car museum but unfortunately it is closed due to Covid-19. A person working there told me they won't open that part of the museum until there is a vaccine. I got a chance to go there many years ago and was very impressed with their selection of cars.
September 17th, 2020
I visited Chicago in January, 2008. Since Chicago is very cold during this time of year there were a lot less tourists visiting Cloud Gate so I was able to get a photo with only a few people in the shot.
Cloud Gate is a public sculpture by Indian-born British artist Sir Anish Kapoor, that is the centerpiece of AT&T Plaza at Millennium Park in the Loop community area of Chicago, Illinois. The sculpture and AT&T Plaza are located on top of Park Grill, between the Chase Promenade and McCormick Tribune Plaza & Ice Rink. Constructed between 2004 and 2006, the sculpture is nicknamed The Bean because of its shape, a name Kapoor initially disliked, but later grew fond of. Made up of 168 stainless steel plates welded together, its highly polished exterior has no visible seams. It measures 33 by 66 by 42 feet (10 by 20 by 13 m), and weighs 110 short tons (100 t; 98 long tons).
Kapoor's design was inspired by liquid mercury and the sculpture's surface reflects and distorts the city's skyline. Visitors are able to walk around and under Cloud Gate's 12-foot (3.7 m) high arch. On the underside is the "omphalos" (Greek for "navel"), a concave chamber that warps and multiplies reflections. The sculpture builds upon many of Kapoor's artistic themes, and it is popular with tourists as a photo-taking opportunity for its unique reflective properties.
The sculpture was the result of a design competition. After Kapoor's design was chosen, numerous technological concerns regarding the design's construction and assembly arose, in addition to concerns regarding the sculpture's upkeep and maintenance. Various experts were consulted, some of whom believed the design could not be implemented. Eventually, a feasible method was found, but the sculpture's construction fell behind schedule. It was unveiled in an incomplete form during the Millennium Park grand opening celebration in 2004, before being concealed again while it was completed. Cloud Gate was formally dedicated on May 15, 2006, and has since gained considerable popularity, both domestically and internationally.
September 17th, 2020
I was visiting Chicago in January, 2008 and saw this on Michigan Avenue. This Giant American Gothic Statue, a 25-foot-tall version of the farm couple from Grant Wood's painting, "American Gothic." moves from place to place; it's already spent years in Chicago, Dubuque, Des Moines, Elkhart, and Anamosa (Grant Wood's hometown).
Because of its wild popularity among camera-ready tourists, J. Seward Johnson Jr.'s God Bless America sculpture towered for more than twice as long as the usual rotating exhibit.
Despite some art critics' best efforts, the farmer, a woman, a pitchfork and a suitcase became one of the biggest art draws in a city that boasts the Bean (aka Cloud Gate), the Picasso sculpture and Calder's Flamingo.
The sculpture has moved to another city so American Gothic fans can flock to the Art Institute of Chicago, just blocks away, where the original Grant Wood painting is on display.
September 16th, 2020
I have worked for Royal Caribbean Cruise line since 1997. I met so many really nice guests during these 23 years.
We had a special lunch during each cruise called, "Meet the Officers." Different managers would have lunch in the dining room with our Diamond Plus and Pinnacle members. These are the guests that have cruised the most times with Royal Caribbean. I love going to these because I love hearing the guests' perspective about entertainment and cruising in general.
We would share stories and tell everyone at our table what our favorite ports are and also share any unique stories relating to cruising.
One time at the end of a cruise I was walking around the ship and a lady stopped me to give me this. She wanted to thank me for the chat at lunch and for all the entertainment she enjoyed during the cruise.
I was moving recently and found this. It is a great reminder of how nice some people are and they do really appreciate what we do to entertain them during their cruise.