For a While on Flickr . . . .


Plain stupid?

Who knows?

There’s plenty more going up.

Of course, it can all be brought down too.

For a while, however, I seem to be getting a kick out Flickr’s screen-filling slideshow and still presentation features.

Writer, Musician, Photographer — I went for a trifecta! — knows how to write, play guitar and sing, and take fairly decent photographs and snapshots, but the business thing has had me whigged a long time!

In our online journey, the era of bad English has been long supplanted by another of terrific visual art, so much so that one’s best may find company with the best of tens of thousands of other equally fine shooters. ¬†I / you / we have been floating along on a sea of gorgeous photography as well as looking into the black pit of the world’s most reprehensible moments.

It’s been easy getting lost.

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Propelling posting to Flickr — Note: NEW material will continue appearing here, and first — has been both upgrades in the hosting technology, which appears to accept DNG and NEF masters (wow!), and related presentation — there is something good about seeing fine work (I hope it is that) full screen.

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Journal: Determined – Learning – Still Fighting


I switched main web hosts earlier today, and I’ve decided to lag the propagation by the new server addresses, so I don’t feel I have e-mail waiting in one place and not in another.

Something like that . . . .

That could make it difficult to find the tired old main web ( — enjoy the last look (I don’t even care to know if it’s there right now): it will come back as a WordPress web.

Of course, unless I restore the piece, there will be “link rot”, including early references on this blog to slide shows once anchored by the site.

It pains me to think that my efforts will one day become someone else’s “way back machine” discovery — or worse: my magnetically suspended arrangements will disappear from the web a day to a week following my own departure from the planet (not today, thank you very much), and there won’t even be the possibility of a single “wow — check this out!”

I like to entertain.

Not that I’ve had a “wow moment” lately although the politics blog, Conflict Back-Channels, which I simply call “BackChannels” along with a lot other folks using that title these days, has been reaching in the span of 30 days the intellectually intrepid of about 65 nations, including North Korea and Vatican City.

Go figure.

If they’re reading my blog, why is everybody still fighting?



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ISO: Work!

I don’t know whether the skills — and by inference the capital in equipage and knowledge — exhibited in this space are going to work for me, as it were.

This morning began with my editing a friend’s resume — yes, I can do that too even though approaching my own (there’s a new section on the above tabs) plainly scares me.

Oh my God, what have I done with my life!?

From one perspective, I can answer that without cringing: if deflected, discouraged, or inhibited early on,perhaps, I’ve nonetheless spent my life reading, writing (well, “journaling” at least), playing music, and engaged with photography.


Of course.

From another perspective, I may not be anything like what America’s combined accounting, engineering, and political cultures want.

Had I gotten any kind of smooth launch into music (one with much less other traditional intellectual enrichment), I’d have hoped by now to have transitioned to underscoring films.

In another life — that train needed to take me to Boston.

This other organic thing, less one-track minded, has sprawled a bit, and here am I squeezing it back into form, casting for “tasking” and otherwise molding it, kneading it around projects.

A combination of the two — direct service relationships and income; independent creative entrepreneurship — comprise my needs.

Offered: a terrific broad editorial and research capability bounded by English only and not by geography at all, such may be the “life of the mind” on the World Wide Web; general photography, where one indeed has to go somewhere with a camera, making the same an east coast (mid-Atlantic, New England, southern states) sport from my location close by two major American Interstates: I-70 and I-81.

Troubled manuscripts — academic, business, creative — may be welcomed here!


Also, schedule permitting and pony car willing, speeding with Nikon glass away from this desktop on a client’s mission would be welcomed here too.

It has to happen.

All kinds of things are just ready for it.

Shed, Surreybrooke Gardens, Middletown, Maryland, June 17, 2006

Shed, Surreybrooke Gardens, Middletown, Maryland, June 17, 2006

I had hoped my related artist’s blog, J. S. Oppeneim – All Together, would be the more intimate vehicle, but for the past week or so, I’ve been posting on it items like that above as I’ve gone about reconstructing and editing an archive dating back to the build of my desktop computer over the winter of 2006-2007.

It has been nice posting pretty pictures, as they remind me that I can shoot pretty well when I want to give photography proper a little attention.

Now I want to give Communicating Arts a little more attention.

I got a call yesterday to shoot a toddler’s birthday party.

I didn’t jump.

Should I have?  Is all exposure good?  Is all work good?

Instead, I’m thinking about printing, so “Bertha” hasn’t had to have been spitting ink and checking herself out for nothing lo these many years.

Also, instead, I want to package together driving / journalism / research / shooting.


What is that right combination of artistic esprit and freedom, country living, and, not so pretty but light aristocratic pretension?

Condé Nast?  Meredith?

I think I like owning my work even if it is not (today) ginning up royalties like a well pumping oil.

Darn it!

Subjects intrinsically interesting to me: artists and their lairs — I like my Hollywood-in-Maryland down at the coffee shop; environmental portraiture; farms and other elements of the pastoral (no better location for that than mine five minutes from Interstate 81, which cuts down the west side of the Blue Ridge on its haul down to Tennessee (and up northeast to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania followed by a hard left northward to the Canadian border in upstate New York).

Much else is fine too, provided the gear needed (and on hand) fits into the Mustang.

Where is the work?

Is it in the facility for taking “a good picture” — or a great one every time out?

Is it in the hucksterism with big brag and prospect lists to match?

I don’t think I have any “big brags” at the moment — just small ones with occasional weddings, some volunteer work, from which I may post here, and always some moving along in the other arts and in intellectual circles. ¬†Still, my ship remains adrift beside the Great American Economy, my course uneasily navigated.

Environmental Portraits

Hagerstown, Maryland traditional country music player and crooner Mike Cunningham.

Mike plays his electric possibly more than his acoustic and had meant for our session to produce a picture of grandpa for the kids — all grown up — for Christmas, but they came out so well, the impact was so good, i.e., his delight so effusive, I’ll be surprised if the prints are¬†not already in frames and hanging on walls.

A horizontal portrait for Mike Cunningham.

Every modern life inhabits multiple environments and roles, but one or two in the overall ecology in living develop and most authentically express the soul of the person.¬† With that notion in mind, family snaps may hold diverse fragments from a life — we see¬†each other but a¬†little bit at a time and superficially — and we’re lucky to find among¬†snapshots even one to a few that speak for the subject.

As artists by nature construct and slip into the looks by which they would be known and forever suspended lovingly in memory, Mike has been doing his part for a while. 

We had a very good rapport. 

He took direction well.  

Between the two of us, I think we got him.


Production Notes

Field Equipage: Nikon D2x; Nikkor zoom 16-85mm and Nikkor primes 85mm and 105mm (f/2.5 Manual Focus);¬† Nikon L37C filters; Billingham 335 — the top flap makes a good ground cloth for kneeling (where protection or dry knees may be appreciated) — and Gitzo carbon fiber tripod with an Acratech head and Arca-Swiss quick release plates.

Computing: Adobe Lightroom 3.6.

Printing: HP B9180 with the archival (unrivaled for longevity) Vivera ink¬† set on InkPress Luster, 11×14 borderless

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