Category Archives: Blogging


The pictures in the folder 10-31-07 display both a terrifying display of brute strength and a terrifying display of Halloween costumes.









By dusting off these pictures and adding them to the current Smugmug Photo Gallery, I was able to restore the following blog posts:



I have now restored all of the October 2007 blog posts to close to their original glory. Now I can’t tell you why I’ve felt motivated to restore decade old blog posts, because I know that nobody is checking them out, but I can tell you that I’ve learned a lot about who I used to be. I used to be somebody that put up photos within minutes after taking them. The current me has photos that he took close to a year ago that he still needs to look at. I probably need to find some middle ground on that.

Next Saturday’s walk down memory lane will involve more Iowa State Football and some surprising tailgaters!

Post No. 2500

This blog has hit a milestone. This is the 2500th post since I started “An Artist’s Notebook” on August 9, 2006. A lot of different things have went through these pages over the last 10+ years, but I hope I’ve stayed true to the original vision I laid down in that very first post:

So here is the first journal entry. I felt like having as pretentious sounding name as possible for my journal. I have a few goals about this journal. My main goal is just to actually write in it. My second goal is to be as truthful as possible towards my true thoughts and feelings. I have another journal on another website, but it is really just a collection of sarcastic statements and cheap jabs at open faced sandwiches. This journal is meant to be about what my achievements and failures are in the world of art. What projects I am working on and what I have accomplished and what I have failed to accomplish. What I am photographing and what I am thinking about entering in photo contests. What I am thinking about. It might not always make sense. It might just be things I need to write down because they strike me as poignant or inspirational. This is in a small way an online “idea box”.

I do also have a goal of producing something that makes me worthy of having a pretentious sounding journal title like: “An Artist’s Notebook”.

It is strange to think that one of the things that I was originally committed to was the TRUTH. For many years the “motto” of this blog was “Art is a lie that reveals the truth.” Now we live in a post-truth society. Truth has had a hard time. If Justin Timberlake can bring sexy back. I can bring truth back.

I hope in these last 10+ years I’ve stayed pretentious enough for the title “An Artist’s Notebook”. I’m sure some of you will argue that I have. Those of you that like to push the “elitist” lie.

The first JOURNAL ENTRY would go on to tell a story about Photo Contests:

So last night, I attended the Iowa State Fair Photography Salon Reception with Sara. I figured that the two pictures that I had accepted for display would be a picture of Jay entitled “Portrait of a Self Portrait” and a picture of a bullfrog entitled “Kentucky Appetizer”. I didn’t have any real strong images to enter into the contest this year, but I felt that I had some that were good enough to display, but probably not good enough for ribbons. I was correct. Those were the two pictures selected for display. They did not receive ribbons.

So now I turn my attention to the Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest. I wasn’t going to enter this contest because I have been frustrated in the past by the way it is ran. The pictures are never displayed on the day that they are supposed to be displayed. Instead, they might be displayed as late as 48 hours. The second thing about this contest that sticks in my craw is that they don’t put the names of the photographers or of the image up anywhere. Basically, there are a bunch of pictures up and who knows who took them.

I don’t complain because I seek the fame and fortune that comes with having your picture displayed at the Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest. I complain because I would like to know who took some of the other pictures. Sadly, 1 town west the now defunct Ogden Fun Days Photo Contest was ran a million times better.

Jay talked me into entering this year’s contest. I told him that I didn’t like having to put any emotional investment into this contest, when it was so poorly ran.

He said it wouldn’t require any emotional investment. I could just put the pictures I made for the Ogden Fun Days Contest into the Pufferbilly Contest and whatever happens happened.

For better or worse, I’m just not wired in such a manner. There are very few things in my life I can just say “what happens, happens.” Photography certainly isn’t one of them.

He did convince me it was a waste not to enter one of the few contests around here just because it was so poorly ran. So, I am entering. I need to come up with 6 entries by August 31. That is the limit and I do not want to do anything less than the limit. I don’t want to mail it in.

So I started a sentence with the word “so”. How very lazy of me. Hopefully I’ve improved in that vein over the years.

It is interesting that I’ve now semi-retired from Photo Contests. I haven’t entered the Pufferbilly Days Contest in years because it is so terribly, dreadfully run. Last year I didn’t enter the Iowa State Fair Photography Salon for the first time in probably 15 years. I just didn’t have the fire in my belly for it. The Ogden Fun Days Photo Contest folded after 1 year.

I may come out of retirement this year. Even though the Pufferbilly Days Contest, is so terribly, dreadfully, awfully run.

Maybe you are wondering what KENTUCKY APPETIZER looked like. Something like this:

Kentucky Appetizer

That picture of Jay? Use your imagination.

In 2500 posts, this blog has went through 3 different platforms. There have been 2,166 comments left. That makes me kind of sad. But I’m sure I’ve received some feedback via email. I’m hoping.

The most popular post category is:

Flowers – 362 Posts

The people to be referenced in posts the most often:

1. Jesse – 283 Posts
2. Teresa – 244 Posts
3. Shannon – 231 Posts
3. Jay – 231 Posts
5. Derrick – 220 Posts

Thanks to everybody that has given this blog a modicum of success through 2500 posts. Here is to the next 2500!

To a Great 2017!

Pretend like I published this on January 1, just like I meant to do.

It is that day at Photography 139 Headquarters where we take down our old Photography 139 Calendar and put it in the trunk with many of the other remnants of our past.

We like to think that 2016 was a successful year for Photography 139 and I’d like to thank everybody that was responsible for making it appear so.

So to my list of email blog subscribers…

Jay Janson
Jason Baier
Shannon Bardole
Scott Degeneffe
Corey Faust
Susanna Funk
Jill Gorshe
Jesse Howard
Sara Lockner
Teresa Kahler
Nader Parsaei
Becky Perkovich
Bernice Verhoorn
Suzie Brannen
Eric Hiatt
Kim Barker
Cousin Amy
Russell Kennerly
Tim Tuck
Tim Tucker’s Lady Friend
Michelle Haupt
Geri Derner
Micky Augustin
Angie DeWaard
Mike Vest
DaeHee Yoon
Monica Henning
Sarah Karber
Carla Stensland
Laura Miller
Joseph Lynch
Jorge Rios
Anders Runestad
Laura Miller
Michael Houlihan
Dawn Krause
Joe Duff
Derrick Gorshe
Dustin Jackson
Bethany Miller
Logan Kahler
Elizabeth Nordeen
Nicole Nickens
Jeff Daniel
Stephanie Kim
Bob Person
Melissa Degeneffe
Willy MacAlpine
Janice Peterson
Jessica Potts
Steve Junck
Shawn Lockner
Brooke Milligan
Cathie Raley
Paul Golden
Linda Toot
Jodie Bennett
Dan Pottratz
Alisa Baker
Cassandra Chadwick

Thanks for a great 2016! Of course, I’ll try to do better in 2017. Hopefully our little family will continue to grow in the new year!

A Parody Clown Sighting

I put up some pictures that were very, very clearly fake clown pictures to make fun of how stupid the clown sighting hoax is and how gullible people are who believe in such stupid things.

It was a parody! A parody of the people who take such things seriously!

It was 50% a quote from the movie HALLOWEEN. The good one, directed by John Carpenter. Not the awful one that was directed by Rob Zombie.

Another major clue, should’ve been the part about developing and printing color film images in a matter of moments. The images were very clearly poorly Photoshopped!

Here is the truth about clown sightings:


Do you wonder what goes into the psychosis of people that believe that such things are occurring despite all the evidence that leads to the contrary. Here is a pretty good theory:

The experts weighed in with explanations. David G. Myers, a professor of psychology at Hope College in Holland, Mich., attributed the epidemic of sightings to “mass hysteria” as people’s fears and feelings fed on one another. Jason D. Seacat, an associate professor of psychology at Western New England University in Springfield, Mass., suggested another motive for the outbreak: a need for people to feel connected to a news event that had garnered national headlines.

“Since the event appears to be difficult to verify, the claim that one has had such an encounter is easier to make and relatively free from the risk of being called out as a fraud,” he said in an email. “So, low risk of being called out for lying and the benefit of positive attention for reporting such a claim may motivate some people to lie.”


I mean, man, I’d probably leave the clown picture up, but then there would be somebody that would see it and say that I was lying about it because I was in on it with the clowns. That is how conspiracy theorist think. They are broken cognitively. When they see something that clearly shows that their theory is full of holes and lies, they just claim that the evidence is provided by somebody that is in on it.

Instead, enjoy a picture of a daisy:

Ahhh… All better.


Considering that this week’s theme was the most accessible, I feel like the amount of submissions isn’t too shabby.

Let’s have a look at the submissions for TEXTURE:

Angie DeWaard 1

Kim Barker

Michelle Haupt

Angie DeWaard 2

Christopher D. Bennett

But what is this week’s theme? Scroll down:


There are multiple definitions of STORE. When this theme was written, Humble Narrator was thinking about a place you go and buy things, but you can define the word in any way that speaks to you.

Since we are several weeks in, we should have a rules refresher.


1. The picture has to be taken the week of the theme. This isn’t a curate your pictures challenge. This is a get your butt off the couch (my personal experience) and put your camera in your hands challenge.
2. Your submission needs to be emailed to by noon on the Monday of the challenge. It should be pointed out that this blog auto-publishes at 12:01 on Mondays. So it wouldn’t hurt to get your picture in earlier.

That is it, them’s the rules.



There is a new email subscriber to celebrate this week. Sarah Karber has shown her keen intellect and sophisticated tastes by becoming a Photography 139 email subscriber. Sarah once worked for the Smithsonian and she got her Divinity degree from Vanderbilt. In short, she is one of the most fascinating people I know. So if you see her out and about walking the mean streets of Boone, feel free to give her the knowing glance and show her the super-secret Photography 139 handshake.


I haven’t heard any reports from this division for quite some time. I think they’ve given up.


A reminder that while I’m not posting these in AN ARTIST’S NOTEBOOK AKA The Journal AKA this here blog, the 2016 SELF-PORTRAIT PROJECT (or as Russell calls it THE SELFIE PROJECT) is ongoing and you can check in on it over yonder:


On Saturdays, I’m going to start publishing lists. This won’t be shared on any social media. It will be kind of a perk for being an email subscriber. Well, maybe a perk. Maybe a torment. I don’t really have real strong plans for it, but I’m sure you’ll be able to look forward to my opinions on things I know about (the best tenderloin spots in Iowa) and things I don’t really know about (I’m not really sure what qualifies here) to things I don’t really care about, but other people do (ranking the best STAR WARS movie to the worst).

Well, stop reading this and get out and take a STORE picture!


So the walk down memory lane now concludes. With a look at the images that were in the calendar that early this morning will be taken down from kitchen walls (most common place I’ve seen the calendar hung up), office walls, cubicle walls, and placed gently in the trash with yesterday’s coffee grounds. 2015 Photography 139 Calendar I bid you a fond adieu.

2015 Calendar Cover
Front Cover

January - 2015 Calendar

February - 2015 Calendar

March - 2015 Calendar

April - 2015 Calendar

May - 2015 Calendar

June - 2015 Calendar

July - 2015 Calendar

August - Flower Calendar

September - 2015 Calendar

October - 2015 Calendar

November - 2015 Calendar

December - 2015 Calendar

If you ever get bored and want to take this walk down memory lane again, you can visit the Calendar and Postcards Gallery in the PHOTOGRAPHY 139 GALLERY. Link below:


Since yesterday was the end of year and a holiday that many people celebrate (not me though, I don’t need the calendar gestapo telling me when to start a new year) I would like to take a quick moment to thank everybody that has continued to be an email subscriber to this here blog.

Off the top of my head and I apologize if I miss anybody:

These people are all original subscribers or at least haven’t changed their email since August 22, 2011. Which is how far back the records from off the top of my head go.

Jay Janson
Jason Baier
Shannon Bardole
Scott Degeneffe
Corey Faust
Susanna Funk
Jill Gorshe
Jesse Howard
Sara Lockner
Teresa Kahler
Nader Parsaei
Becky Perkovich
Bernice Verhoorn
Janice Peterson

Suzie Brannen – Since June 22, 2012
Eric Hiatt – Since August 20, 2012
Kim Barker – Since September 18, 2012
Amy Junck-Wallendal – December 18, 2012
Russell Kennerly – Since May 13, 2013
Tim Tucker (Not the one most of you are thinking about) – Since June 27, 2013
Michelle Haupt – Since July 12, 2013
Tim Tucker’s Woman (Sorry, never caught her name) – Since August 22, 2013
Geri Derner – Since September 30, 2013
Micky Augustin – Since October 10, 2013
Angie DeWaard – Since August 24, 2015
Mike Vest – Since September 9, 2015
Melissa Degeneffe – Since September 14, 2015
DaeHee Yoon – Since September 29, 2015
Monica Kewer – Since October 2, 2015 (Current email)
Carla Stensland – Since October 5, 2015
Joe Lynch – Since October 9, 2015
Jorge Rios – Since October 9, 2015
Anders Runestad – Since October 11, 2015
Elizabeth Nordeen – Since November 2, 2015
Laura Miller – Since November 9, 2015
Michael Houlihan – Since November 16, 2015
Dawn Krause – Since December 21, 2015
Joe Duff – Since December 21, 2015

Thanks for all the support and for making 2015 a successful year, by some sense of the word. I hope our little family here continues to grow. I’ll try and do better in 2016!

Website Update

So earlier in the month I alluded to the fact that I have been updating the look and feel of the website.

I thought I would explain what has happened, without making you go blind with looking at things like this:

  • Perhaps the most obvious difference is that the website should have a different look. Gone is the old gray background for pages and blog entries. The background is now white. This should make it way easier to read text. Which will be a benefit if I ever get back on the short story horse.
  • Another change is that now all posts include a featured image. This is the image at the top of the blog post.
  • I have added a slideshow of “Favorites” in the upper left hand corner of every page. Currently there are only pictures of peoples in that slideshow, but its content will expand over time. From the slideshow, you can click on an image and then go buy it. (Last sentence provided by the Shameless Commerce Division of Photography 139).
  • Also on the sidebar of every webpage, I’ve gotten rid of the drop down list of Categories. This has been replaced with a more aesthetically pleasing Cloud of the most popular Categories. The size of the Category in the cloud is based on the amount of times it has been used for a post.   It is an easy way to find all the posts that have been categorized under let’s say “Jesse”.
  • Gone is the old “Social Media” page. Instead I have added social media icons to the menu that link to the social mediums that I frequent.
  • A skilled observer will notice that in the menu there is an icon for Snapchat. Clicking on that will take you to a page where you can scan my Snapcode and follow me on Snapchat. I use Snapchat mostly for contacting co-workers, hiding from the Sweet & Sour Mafia, and checking the haters.
  • There are now images for people that leave comments. These used to pull from Gravatar, but I’m pretty sure the only person to ever leave a comment that uses Gravatar is Lowell. Now, there is a default daisy image (because cool people like daisies) for commenters that I haven’t created an account. I have created Avatars for frequent commenters. The one of you and for my beta tester (Shannon). However, anybody that becomes a commenter in the future, I will create an avatar for you as well. If you want an avatar, the best way to do that is to leave a comment. If you use Gravatar, the website should still pull your Gravatar image.
  • There are new headers and a new logo. There are only 5 headers currently, but I will be added to that in the future. The new logo might not be permanent, but if it isn’t permanent, some variation of it will be. At this time, I’m leaving the old logo as the watermark for images in the Gallery.
  • 3 blogs are featured on the home page. The 3 featured entries will change as new blog are published.
  • There is a search function now on the far right end of the menu bar. In case you want to find all blog posts where I use the word Proust for example. Suddenly thinking about bringing back the Proust Questionnaire.  Hmmmm… I’ll see if anybody responds to this little outburst.
  • Added a new complementary color to the website. It is a shade of green.

I’ll probably make a few more changes in the coming months, so I’ll keep you updated on those as they occur.

Also, thanks to Vest for aiding in much of this transition!


A picture I’ve been meaning to post for some time.

I just thought I should make a formal announcement that I am going to take a sabbatical from blogging formally. This sabbatical really already began, and I anticipate it lasting until at least May, but maybe longer.

This isn’t to say that I’m out of photos to publish. In fact, the contrary is actually the case.

This isn’t to say that I’m taking a break from photography, because I certainly am not. It is just, that you won’t be able to see my unpublished and yet to be taken photos. At least not here.

Although, I’m sure there will be the occasional blog post about tenderloins, travel, movies, music, life, whatever…

I’m just taking some time off from this project to pursue a couple of other projects. Hopefully those projects will bear fruit someday and I’ll be able to share those with you as well.

Until next time,

Your Humble Narrator