Paintings from Sunset Series by Spence Munsinger, Color Field + Blank White Canvas + Realism + Contemporary Abstract Art, original paintings for sale

“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.”
― Pablo Picasso

Amaryllis

This amaryllis stayed mostly dormant for almost three months before finally sending forth blooms. The flowers finally arrived in late January. I saw them in the dim light in the kitchen, isolated on the black granite countertop, grabbed my Fuji 35mm f1.4 – still better I think than the newer f2 version – and took the photograph above and the one below. The next day the flowers were fully opened and the photograph no longer possible. Such a fleeting moment, but the delicacy of the petals and the edge dramatically in focus works I think.

—spence

Orchid

This orchid came about from bare-bones rescued orchid plants recovered from a dumpster over a year ago. This one out of 7 is the only one to come back to flower. It’s small, but intensely beautiful, with two runners out carrying flowers and crossing each other and by that supporting each other as it flowers.

Take Back Your Government…

How do you stop the slow-motion clown car crash that is the United States Government at present?

Standup, go vote, and get ALL of your friends to register and vote. This lurching pendulum swing from left to right and back is killing us, with each jumping in to tromp all over anything it despises the other guys did. While this happens, nothing of substance changes, our lives are not improved, and nothing changes except to the worse.

Corporations are inherently devoid of ethics. That money should NOT be in elections, corporations are NOT people and they have no right of speech. They are beholden for short terms of results to shareholders, and a CEO who stands up and does the right thing despite the perceptions of his shareholders jumps off with a Golden Parachute shortly after trying. The corporation as a whole cannot look ahead enough to do consistent good. This is also the reason why having a for-profit health care system is unworkable and flawed. The market does not know any better, when it comes to making altruistic decisions because that is what’s demanded, the market can’t.

Gun control won’t happen as long as elected officials take the NRA’s money. Hell, Congress actually admitted this year that the only reason for enacting that deficit-expanding tax cut was to reward donors and to persuade them to keep giving. Money has completely corrupted our government and it’s time to take it back.

— spence

National Grid says “called and reached voicemail”…

This is a bit of a rant, only because I am still pissed off. I’ve written to my customer service rep and my customer service rep’s boss, called National Grid support several times to find out who else could be contacted, wrote a tweet, wrote a review at the Better Business Bureau.

Here’s the thing. I have a house with a brand new furnace. The process is first they remove the old furnace. This starts a period where the house no longer has heat. This happened Monday. Then there is an inspection. That’s Tuesday. Still no heat. Once the inspection is complete you can call for a meter set. This was all done. The meter set appointment was for today. Third day without heat. In New England. In November.

On calling National Grid the appointment is an “all day appointment”. But they do say that what will happen is that the installer will call 15 minutes before showing up. Ok then. That I can do.

I received no phone call. I was pulling my iPhone out and checking for any indication there was a call of any kind and no such call occurred. At 3PM I call the service line. The tech left a report that he called at 9:40 AM, reached voicemail, and then went by and no one was there.

Here’s the thing. An iPhone records every call. Missed, voicemail, whatever, it’s network traffic and there is in my experience ALWAYS a record of a call. It may show up after the fact, but if the call was made it shows. There was no call made. At all. There is no such thing as a call that disappears especially when it was specifically reported that the call reached voicemail.

So I am basically being blamed for not answering the phone, for not being a conscientious consumer, and yet I know for a fact no call was actually made to my phone. The installer may have misdialed, he may have not called at all, but what he said, that he called me and reached my voicemail, DID. NOT. HAPPEN.

If National Grid had said at the outset “we find that people are better off staying at the house the entire day until the tech shows up because our people are somewhat incompetent when it comes to using a telephone” I would have been at the house. And annoyed but not pissed. And I’d have the goddamned meter in place.

—spence

ADDED 10 Novemerber 2016

National Grid showed up today at 8:40 AM after calling 20 minutes before arrival, and installed the meter. The phone call came through without an issue.

National Grid also replied to my tweet about this, and my service rep responded as well.

There is something about being stuck without heat in late fall that is unnerving. My biggest concern was that tonight, when the temperature dips to 30 degrees, the house would still be without heat. That did not happen.

It’s a measure of how much the iPhone and similar designs have changed how things work. Before 2007, “I called and reached voicemail” would have been an untraceable event. You’d have to accept it, there would be no way to verify your cell phone had not dropped off the network. Now we have videos as civic responsibility, you can take a picture of that business card and have it on file, you can fax things with your phone, and the phone gives an accurate record of call activity, even on missed calls. It’s all network.

Zion, first pass

So many images, so many decisions.

I’m working through SLRLounge’s Lightroom Course – outstanding. And I’m learning quite a bit in depth about Lightroom’s potential to truly be a darkroom for digital. This is one of the images I practiced with – it’s not quite where I hope it will be, but it is so far beyond what I would have accomplished a brief time earlier…

01XP9927

—spence

Yosemite in Smoke

I’ve been deepening my work in Lightroom, by going through a tutorial on post processing. I had read Scott kelby’s Lightroom and Raw Processing books a long time ago – I used that workflow for many years – but there is a depth to the Lightroom software, in presets, snapshots, presets for brushes, tone curve, Hue/Saturation?Luminosoty and gradient filters, that I have not delved into. All the things that make Lightroom the software equivalent of a darkroom for processing RAW images.

Here are a couple of images I was paying with.

01XP0042

_XT21139

There was smoke from a nearby fire drifting by Half Dome, it made the light unique.

—spence