Category Archives: Blogging

Post #4,000

August 9, 2006. That was the date where I first took keyboard in hand and began typing out the blog that I entitled “An Artist’s Notebook”. I entitled that first post “First Journal Entry”. The categories for that first post were “Blogging”, “Contests”, “Jay”, and “Sara”.

This is the first paragraph I posted:

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”.

Then it goes on to talk about how I attended the Iowa State Fair Photography Salon Reception with Sara to see what two pictures had been accepted for display that year. Then I would go on to talk about how Jay had talked me into entering the Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest.

The last line of the entry was simply:

I don’t want to mail it in.

While I was actually referencing the Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest, it is my hope that I also didn’t choose to “mail it in” as it pertains to “An Artist’s Notebook”.

It has been 5,276 days since that first post. 5,276 days to reach this day and the 4,000th post in this blog, or “online journal” like I sometimes call it when I don’t like calling it a blog. It is hard to believe I have made it this far, for this long.

It hasn’t been necessarily smooth sailing the whole time. My website has been through a couple different servers. I have been through a couple different hosts for the blog part of the website. I have been through 4 (I think) different image hosting options in those 5,275 days. That jumping around for image hosting solutions did cause the problem that images from my posts from the first few years of this website’s existence have had to be “restored” slowly over time. So far I have semi-successfully restored all the entries though June of 2010. Which means, I still have a full year’s worth of entries left to restore. Somewhere in 2011, was when I fully made the move to my current SmugMug image hosting solution. I have unfortunately lost a few images, probably forever, mostly old phone pictures, but those old posts are as complete as they will ever be.

When I hit these milestones, I like to publish a lot of fairly meaningless stats. This one will be no different. So, here are the “An Artist’s Notebook” categories that I have used the most often:

Top 10 An Artist’s Notebook Categories

#1. Black & White – 698 Entries

#2. Flowers – 693 Entries

#3. Animals – 620 Entries

#4. Jesse – 495 Entries

#5. Portrait – 472 Entries

#6. Shannon – 421 Entries

#7. Carla – 391 Entries

#8. WPC – Submissions – 381 Entries

#9. Teresa – 364 Entries

#10. Mom – 363 Entries

Top Ten An Artist’s Notebook People Categories

#1. Jesse – 495 Entries

#2. Shannon – 421 Entries

#3. Carla – 391 Entries

#4. Teresa – 364 Entries

#5. Mom – 363 Entries

#6. Jay – 320 Entries

#7. Derrick – 295 Entries

#8. Willy – 268 Entries

#9. Vest – 258 Entries

#10. Jen – 254 Entries

Top Ten Non-People An Artist’s Notebook Categories

#1. Black & White – 698 Entries

#2. Flowers – 693 Entries

#3. Animals – 620 Entries

#4. Portrait – 472 Entries

#5. WPC – Submissions – 381 Entries

#6. Nature – 349 Entries

#7. Macro – 332 Entries

#8. Photoshop – 327 Entries

#9. Road Trip – 326 Entries

#10. Art – 314 Entries

People often ask what is the best way to improve their Photography 139 Category Score. The easiest way is to submit pictures to THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE. But posing for and assisting me with photo project or photo adventures is also a very good way.

What people have a shot at cracking the Top Ten by the time we hit Post #5,000? Kim, Sara, Logan, and Micky all have a shot. But 1,000 posts is a long ways away. So anybody has a shot!

But what are the Ten Most Popular Photo Galleries in Photography 139 history? Unfortunately, I can’t answer that question. I can only process stats up to 365 days ago. However, I can tell you the Ten Most Popular Photo Galleries of the last 365 Days are.

Click on the image to peruse that gallery.

Top Ten Most Popular Photography 139 Galleries (by view) of the Last 365 Days


WEEK 209 - ARCHITECTURE - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT
#1. WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE – YEAR 7 – 57697 Views

Be True
#2. Christopher D. Bennett – 41080 Views

9 Emotions Project - Johnathan
#3. 9 Emotions Project – 36972 Views

Taylan Howard
#4. Taylan Howard – 2020 – 34075 Views

Girl in the Blue Skirt - 2016
#5. Daisies – 26800 Views

Morning in America
#6. Drone – 24659 Views

WEEK 274 - FACELESS PORTRAIT - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT
#7. Weekly Photo Challenge – HOF – 24603 Views

Be Aggressive!
#8. Family Happenings – 18,231 Views

Alexis Pregnant with Anela
#9. Alexis Pregnancy Photo Shoot – 2020 – 17057 Views

Black Lives Matter - Boone
#10. Black Lives Matter – Boone – 2020 – 16160 Views

The Ten Most Popular Photography 139 Images of the Last 365 Days (by Views)


Alexis Pregnant with Anela
#1. 7254 Views

Taylan Howard
#2. 3153 Views

2020 Birthday Party Invites
#3. 2460 Views (Photo by Logan Kahler)

Cousin Amy and Sam - 2009
#4. 2228 Views

Garrett Larson
#5. 2127 Views

Baier Family Photo Shoot - 2009
#6. 2111 Views

Camping World Bowl Road Trip - Day 3
#7. 1971 Views

2019  Computer Mine Holiday Card
#8. 1916 Views

The Most Tolerable Third Party
#9. 1891 Views

The Hero of Africa
#10. 1830 Views

Now the secret to the popularity of some of these images is that they are cover photos for albums, but shhhh… don’t tell anybody!

Another category of meaningless statistics, I’d like to share is what have been the most popular posts since the inception of “An Artist’s Notebook”. Although it might not be the most accurate way to judge such things, the only statistic I can use to judge this is “Comments” left on each post. That doesn’t mean emails or text messages or comments I received in person. These are comments that were left in the Comments section of each post.

Most Popular An Artist’s Notebook Entries (by Comments)

#1. The People’s Choice Round Two – 24 Comments

#2. Weekly Photo Challenge – Week 9 – Food – 22 Comments

#2. Weekly Photo Challenge – Week 43 – Sunrise/Sunset – 22 Comments

#4. Town Sign Project: Hamilton County – 21 Comments

#4. Town Sign Project: Dallas County – 21 Comments

#6. Postcard Recreation Project: Some Churches – 20 Comments

#6. Rodan139: Swede Valley Lutheran Church – 20 Comments

#8. Will History Blame Me… – 19 Comments

#9. Yo, Ya Just Get in that, You Get in that Head Space, Ya Know – 15 Comments

#9. You Can Call it a Comeback – 15 Comments

#9. Wild Goose Chase – 15 Comments

#9. Sorry Not Sorry – 15 Comments

One thing to note is that each “An Artist’s Notebook” entry has its Comments section close 30 days after being posted. Some of those still have a chance to grow, but most have been locked into place forever.

The last statistic I want to share before closing out Post #4,000 is kind of a loyalty score. To even be considered for this list, you first have to have a Photography 139 Email Subscription. The following is a statistic based on “loyalty” for lack of a better term to that service.

Top Five Most Loyal Photography 139 Subscribers

1. Michelle Haupt – 99%
2. Joe Duff – 97%
3. Shannon Bardole-Foley – 94%
4. Sara Lockner – 90%
5. Corey Faust – 89%

Thanks to everybody that has supported this adventure for 14 years, 5 months, and now 10 days!

Town Sign Project: Dallas County

The April image for the 2021 Photography 139 Calendar is a butterfly perched on a zinnia in my Mom’s yard. It was taken on August 16, 2020.


2021 Calendar - April

Here are some details of the photo:

DETAILS

CAMERA: Sony ILCE-7M2
LENS: FE 50mm f/2.8 Macro
FOCAL LENGTH: 50mm
APERTURE: f/5
EXPOSURE: 1/80
ISO: 100
LATITUDE: 42.05623
LONGITUDE: -93.87505

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I recently added a photo map to my THE TOWN SIGNS PROJECT album. It looks like this:



This map shows the physical locations of where the town signs I have photographed. In the album, you can scroll in and out and click on the markers to see the pictures.

If you want to see it in the flesh, so to speak, click on the link below:

TOWN SIGN PROJECT

I also recently made a trip around Dallas County to get pictures of the few towns out there that I didn’t have a sign to represent. Unfortunately, most of my time was spent looking around suburbs looking for a sign of some kind. I tried to put as little effort into the suburbs as possible, because I view this as a small town project. That being said, it took a little time to even find anything. I know the signs I have here that represent Urbandale and Waukee are not the best they have to offer, but at the same time, do I lose any sleep about it? Nope, half a bottle of Nyquil takes care of that.

Here is the updated Iowa Conquest Map:


6 Counties - Town Sign Project
PURPLE=COMPLETED

Here are the town signs of Dallas County (population data from 2010, so probably extremely inaccurate for this county):


West Des Moines, Iowa
West Des Moines, Iowa
The City of West Des Moines
Population: 56,609

Urbandale, Iowa
Urbandale, Iowa
Welcome to… Uniquely Urbandale… Urbandale
Population: 39,463

Clive, Iowa
Clive, Iowa
District by Nature
Population: 15,447

Waukee, Iowa
Waukee, Iowa
The Key to Good Living
Population:13,790

Grimes, Iowa
Grimes, Iowa
Grimes
Population: 8,246

Perry, Iowa
Perry, Iowa
Make Yourself at Home!
Population 7,702

Adel, Iowa
Adel, Iowa
Growing with Pride – Home of United Brick & Tile
Population 3,682

Dallas Center, Iowa
Dallas Center, Iowa
Est. 1869
Population: 3,682

Granger, Iowa
Granger, Iowa
Welcome to Granger
Population: 1,244

De Soto, Iowa
De Soto, Iowa
Welcome to De Soto, Iowa
Population: 1,050

Woodward, Iowa
Woodward, Iowa
Welcome to Woodward
Population: 1,024

Van Meter, Iowa
Van Meter, Iowa
tradition with a vision
Population: 1,016

Redfield, Iowa
Redfield, Iowa
Redfield
Population: 835

Dexter, Iowa
Dexter, Iowa
The Original One Horse Town
Population: 611

Minburn, Iowa
Minburn, Iowa
A Small Town with a Big Heart
Population: 365

Linden, Iowa
Linden, Iowa
Pride of (Some Cat) Country
Population: 199

Dawson, Iowa
Dawson, Iowa
Welcome to Dawson
Population: 131

Bouton, Iowa
Bouton, Iowa
Est. 1881
Population: 129

So which town sign wins Best in Show, for Dallas County? I think this one is a no-brainer. It is Dexter:


Dexter, Iowa

Dexter, even has a couple of other great town signs as well:


Town Sign Project Alternate

Town Sign Project Alternate

Either one by themselves would be a strong contender for Best in Show for Dallas County. I’d also give surprisingly good marks to Redfield and Linden and Minburn. Minburn, mostly because of the weird bench that is behind their sign, but isn’t pictured. But runner-up in Dallas County is very clearly Granger for the use of the “hot” and “cold” water towers in their sign.

Which one is the worst? I’m going to put aside the suburbs for a moment, because I believe they probably have a better sign out there that I just didn’t care to spend hours in suburban hell looking for them. Maybe some day in the future. But the second worst is the blandness of Dallas Center, but the worst is Adel for putting an advertisement for a business on their town sign. I’m guessing that business probably built that sign, but still… gross.

So 6 counties in, I’m going to up the Bennett Power Rankings to a Top Ten.

Bennett Town Sign Power Rankings


Collins, Iowa
#10. Collins

Sheldahl, Iowa
#9. Sheldahl

Badger, Iowa
#8. Badger

Granger, Iowa
#7. Granger

Scranton, Iowa
#6. Scranton

Boone, Iowa
#5. Boone

Dexter, Iowa
#4. Dexter

Farnhamville, Iowa #3 - East Side
#3. Farnhamville

Pilot Mound, Iowa
#2. Pilot Mound

Moingona, Iowa
#1. Moingona

These are how I feel at this time, but it is possible that 5 minutes from now, I would rank these completely differently.

The good news is that I have a couple of volunteers for certain counties. So in the future, these road trips won’t be solo. I mean many of them will, but not all of them. Polk County should be next, but I really need a pep talk to head back in to suburbia.

WPC – WEEK 246 – FRIENDS

You are probably wondering why this post didn’t come out at 12:01 PM, on the nose. The reason is simple, my website broke overnight. It didn’t exactly break, but it stopped being able to produce new information.

The Photography 139 is build on love, passion, photography, God, and support for all oppressed classes. But it is also built on a MySQL database. Problem is that the data structure for the MySQL database is allegedly limited to 100 MB. However, the Photography 139 database hit 150 MB last night. Apparently I got away with an extra 50 MB of data before I got shut down.

That meant, I had to export the data from the existing database. Create a new database. Import the data into the new database. Then point the website to the new database. All of that might have been pretty simple, except for the import the data part was a disaster. It was tons and tons of reading help forums, trying to find the answer. You picked a fine time to leave me Webmaster Vest!

However, I survived the process and the website seems to be fully functional again. I guess we’ll find out in the next day or so.

And that, is that!

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This week just barely made it to double digit submissions. Barely. 35 straight weeks and a sigh. I’m sad that so few of you have FRIENDS. I would offer my friendship services, but you know global pandemic that is being horribly mismanaged and the fact that I am the True Lone Wolf.

But you didn’t come here to listen to me talk all tommyrot about participation rates. You came to see the submissions:


WEEK 246 - FRIENDS - SHANNON BARDOLE-FOLEY
Shannon Bardole-Foley

WEEK 246 - FRIENDS - TAMARA PETERSON
Tamara Peterson

WEEK 246 - FRIENDS - ANGIE DEWAARD
Angie DeWaard

WEEK 246 - FRIENDS - ANGIE DEWAARD
Angie DeWaard

WEEK 246 - FRIENDS - ANDY SHARP
Andy Sharp

WEEK 246 - FRIENDS - BECKY PARMELEE
Becky Parmelee

WEEK 246 - FRIENDS - BECKY PARMELEE
Becky Parmelee

WEEK 246 - FRIENDS - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT
Christopher D. Bennett

WEEK 246 - FRIENDS - ELIZABETH NORDEEN
Elizabeth Nordeen

WEEK 246 - FRIENDS - CARLA STENSLAND
Carla Stensland

WEEK 246 - FRIENDS - CARLA STENSLAND
Carla Stensland

But enough dwelling on the past. Time to look to the future. We are all interested in the future, for that is where you and I are going to spend the rest of our lives. And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future! This week’s theme:


WEEK 247 - SIGNS
SIGNS

SIGNS! What a great theme! An easy theme! While very few of us have friends, everybody has access to SIGNS! A SIGNS photo is simply a photo of a SIGN(S). Any kind of SIGNS.

I look forward to seeing your interpretations!

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HOUSEKEEPING


A MESSAGE FROM THE PHOTOGRAPHY 139 RULES DIVISION

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. Don’t send me a picture of you next to the Eiffel Tower, when I know you were in Iowa all week. I will point out that I have let that slide some in the past. I will not in the future. Since it is literally about the only rule.

Your submission needs to be emailed to bennett@photography139.com by 11 AM on the Monday of the challenge due date.

OR

I now allow people to text me their submissions. In the past, I had made exceptions for a couple people that aren’t real computer savvy, even though it was an inconvenience for me and required at least 3 extra steps for me. I am now lifting that embargo because I have a streamline way of uploading photos. I’m not giving out my phone number, but if you have it, you can text me.

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.


A MESSAGE FROM THE PHOTOGRAPHY 139 SHAMELESS SELF-PROMOTION DIVISION

Nobody showed class, taste, and sophistication this week by signing up for a Photography 139 email subscription. I’ll try and do better next week.

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That’s all I got for today, so if the good Lord’s willin’ and the creek don’t rise, we will commune right here again next Monday. Hopefully it will be a very friendly Monday!

An Artist’s Notebook Post #3751

We have hit another milestone in the history of “An Artist’s Notebook”. Post #3751. I would normally make these statistical look back at the past type posts on even numbers, but I felt you guys were probably chomping at the bit to see the entries for RULE OF THIRDS.

This blog/online journal burst onto the world on August 9, 2006. Nearly 14 years later, it is somehow still around. That is success of some kind. At least it is perseverance.

As you know, I like meaningless statistics. That is what these posts are usually about. That and to take stock as to how I’m doing with my original mission to:

#1. Write in it.
#2. To be truthful as possible towards my true thoughts and feelings.
#3. Produce something that makes me worthy of having a pretentious sounding journal title like: “An Artist’s Notebook”.

I’m going to say that I continue to manage all 3. You probably wouldn’t know if I was being honest with you on my thoughts and feelings anyways. You’ll just have to take my work for it.

The last time we looked at these stats in Post #3500 on October 4, 2019 these were the 10 most popular categories on “An Artist’s Notebook”:

10. Photography – 311 Posts
9. Teresa – 312 Posts
8. Carla – 314 Posts
7. Shannon -351 Posts
6. Black & White – 390 Posts
5. Weekly Photo Challenge – 394 Posts
4. Jesse – 404 Posts
3. Animals – 477 Posts
2. Portrait – 516 Posts
1. Flowers – 537 Posts

Here are the current “standings”:

MOST POPULAR CATEGORIES

10. Mom – 332 Posts
9. Teresa – 338 Posts
8. WPC – Submissions – 342 Posts
7. Carla – 354 Posts
6. Shannon – 384 Posts
5. Jesse – 455 Posts
4. Portrait – 491 Posts
3. Animals – 554 Posts
2. Black & White – 568 Posts
1. Flowers – 594 Posts

Back in October, these were the 10 Most Popular Not People Categories:

10. Art – 243 Posts
9. Nature – 260 Posts
8. Personal Photo Project – 261 Posts
7. Road Trip – 288 Posts
6. Photography – 311 Posts
5. Black & White – 390 Posts
4. Weekly Photo Challenge – 390 Posts
3. Animals – 477 Posts
2. Portrait – 516 Posts
1. Flowers – 537 Posts

Here are the current “standings”:

MOST POPULAR NOT PEOPLE CATEGORIES

10. Naima – 263 Posts
9. Photoshop – 285 Posts
8. Art – 287 Posts
7. Nature – 303 Posts
6. Road Trip – 308 Posts
5. WPC – Submissions – 342 Posts
4. Portrait – 491 Posts
3. Animals – 559 Posts
2. Black & White – 568 Posts
1. Flowers – 594 Posts

I anticipate by the time we get to post 4,000 Black & White will surpass Flowers. Especially considering I’m giving some consideration into breaking Flowers down by flower type. All that would be one beast of a job.

Back in October, these were the 10 Most Tagged Humans:

10. Jen – 222 Posts
9. Vest – 234 Posts
8. Willy – 238 Posts
7. Derrick – 267 Posts
6. Jay – 294 Posts
5. Mom – 300 Posts
4. Teresa – 312 Posts
3. Carla – 314 Posts
2. Shannon – 351 Posts
1. Jesse – 403 Posts

These are the current standings:

10 MOST TAGGED HUMANS:

10. Jen – 243 Posts
9. Vest – 247 Posts
8. Willy – 258 Posts
7. Derrick – 284 Posts
6. Jay – 312 Posts
5. Mom – 332 Posts
4. Teresa – 338 Posts
3. Carla – 353 Posts
2. Shannon – 384 Posts
1. Jesse – 455 Posts

It is strange that the Top 10 Humans is almost identical. Except Carla has passed Teresa.

You may be wondering, what does it take to improve my Photography 139 Score? How do I get on the big board by the time Post 3750 comes around next August-ish?

1. Submit pictures for the WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE.
2. Assist or pose for photo projects.
3. Be related to me.

If you are wondering who is just outside of the top ten? The 3 people just outside of the Top Ten are Kim, Sara, and Logan.

But what are the most popular pictures and galleries of this website?

Currently, there 74,942 files in the Photography 139 Gallery. That takes up 450.88 GB of storage space on the SmugMug servers.

Over time, it is historically difficult to determine what is the most popular photos and galleries. I can only track statistics for the last 365 days. But for the last 365 days, these are the most popular albums:

TOP 10 PHOTOGRAPHY 139 ALBUMS (POPULARITY BY VIEWS)


Baby Tri-Force 1st Birthday Party

#10 Miller Triplet 1st Birthday Party – 13751 Views

Miller-Peterson Christmas - 2019

#9 Family Happenings – 14222 Views

Iowa State vs. Iowa

#8 Iowa State Cyclones Football – 2019 – 15711 Views

#7Naima– 16108 Views

Taylan Howard

#6 Taylan Howard -2020– 21320 Views

Autumn Sharp

#5 Autumn Sharp – 2020– 21852 Views

WEEK 158 - BOREDOM - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT

#4 Weekly Photo Challenge – Year 6– 29218 Views

July 14, 2019

#3 Selfie Project – 2019 – 40726 Views

9 Emotions - Bill

#2 9 Emotions Project – 43867 Views

WEEK 222 - SPORTS/GAMES - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT

#1 Weekly Photo Challenge – Year 7 – 48433 Views

These are the 10 Most Popular Images (by Views):

10. 973 Views

Camping World Bowl Road Trip - Day 3

9. 1056 Views

Minnesota State Fair - 2019

8. 1063 Views

Rapid City Mission Trip - 2019

7.1082 Views

Thanksgiving - 2019

6. 1116 Views

Howards - 2019

5. 1141 Views

Autumn Sharp

4. 1635 Views

Garrett Larson

3. 1261 Views

Stenslands- 2019

1283 Views

July 15, 2017

1. 2283 Views

January 14, 2019

I’m surprised that THE 9 EMOTIONS PROJECT is still so popular, since I haven’t touched it in over a year. But I do hope to get back to it. In fact, I have purchased a few things to make it possible to get back to THE 9 EMOTIONS PROJECT while safely physically distancing. So if you are interesting in being a victim… err… a subject. You know where to find me.

An Artist’s Notebook Post #3,500

Welcome to the 3,500th entry in “An Artist’s Notebook”. The blog portion of my Photography 139 website. It has been along time since I first took keyboard hand sitting in the old Computer Mine setup or possibly in my Mom’s basement, because that is where my life was at that time.

In fact, the first time I posted anything on “An Artist’s Notebook” was August 9, 2006. The very first word I wrote, “So”. Maybe not the best word. Maybe not the most forceful word. It is a word that almost feels like an apology.

I clearly didn’t know where this was going to take me and I’m not sure I even know where I’m at now. So.

I would go on in the first post to state that I had a few goals for this blog.

#1. To write in it.

I think I can say safely that 3,499 posts later, I have written in it. I often wonder if I were to print out every page of “An Artist’s Notebook”, how many pages it would be. While I know that most of those pages would just be pictures at not necessarily words, I’m still pretty sure that the entire thing would run several thousands of pages. While the things I write and the nature of what I write and post has changed over time and I’m sure it will continue to change, I will say for now, I’m still on track for Goal #1.

#2. To be as truthful as possible towards my true thoughts and feelings.

On this goal I’m going to give myself an incomplete. I feel that I am truthful to my loyal readers, but I don’t know that I necessarily share my feelings a lot. For example, I don’t know how many of you know how much I despise the open-faced sandwich. It is a pox upon mankind. Kind of like anti-vaxxers. When I think about it, I suppose I don’t hold back much. However, I’ll have to double down on my efforts to let you know about my true feelings. A 5,000 word piece on the worthlessness of the open-faced sandwich is coming your way on Sunday!

#3. Producing something that makes me worthy of having a pretentious sounding journal title like: “An Artist’s Notebook”.

The question here, is this: Is the blog any darn good? It would be arrogant of me to claim that it is. I have garnered a small amount of loyal subscribers. But I’m sure a better blog would garner more. My entries do occasionally gather comments. But I’m sure a better blog would gather more comments. I guess I’ll have to keep plugging away and let the sands of time figure out if this thing is any good.

On these mile marker posts, I like to look at what things and what people have most influenced this post.

On my 750th post, these were the Top 16 post categories and I’ll assume, the only categories I had for posts back then:

1. Photography – 295
2. Friends – 269
3. Life – 238
4. Family – 98
5. Religion – 63
6. ISU Football – 41
7. Jaycees – 40
8. Movies – 39
9. Blogging 33
10. Sports – 25
11. Work – 25
12. House – 24
13. Writing – 23
14. Comedy – 20
15. Politics – 17
16. History – 12

On post 1,000, these were the 10 people that I had tagged the most in posts:

1. Jay (144)
2. Jesse (143)
3. Shannon (140)
4. Derrick (117)
5. Jen (101)
6. Teresa (96)
7. Willy (93)
8. Sara (88)
9. Baier (65)
10. Dawn (64)

By post 1,447 these were the 10 most tagged people:

10. Dad – 117
9. Carla – 118
8. Sara – 122
7. Willy – 124
6. Jen – 143
5. Teresa – 144
4. Derrick – 157
3. Shannon – 160
2. Jay – 180
1. Jesse – 195

This picture of Evie was the most popular picture on my website:



By post 2500, these were the 5 most tagged people:

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

By post 3,000 these were the most popular categories:

#10 – Jay – 262 Posts
#9 – Life – 274 Posts
#8 – Teresa – 282 Posts
#7 – Shannon – 289 Posts
#6 – Animals – 301 Posts
#5 – Portrait – 313 Posts
#4 – Jesse – 328 Posts
#3 – WPC (Formerly RWPE) – WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE – 432 Posts
#2 – Flowers – 436 Posts
#1 – Photography – 440 Posts

And these were the most tagged people:

#10 – Vest 204 Posts
#9 – Jen – 205 Posts
#8 – Willy – 209 Posts
#7 – Derrick – 241 Posts
#6 – Mom – 247 Posts
#5 – Carla – 261 Posts
#4 – Jay – 262 Posts
#3 – Teresa – 282 Posts
#2 – Shannon – 289 Posts
#1 – Jesse – 328 Posts

Here we are, post 3,5000. I should point out before I reveal the current most popular categories on “An Artist’s Notebook”, I should point out that while I’ve been going back and fixing old broken entries via our Saturday night trips down memory lane, I have also been re-categorizing and breaking some categories into multiple categories. That is why some categories have actually lost posts. Hopefully some of those generic categories like “Photography” and “Life” will be down to zero some day.

Here are the most popular categories:

10. Photography – 311 Posts
9. Teresa – 312 Posts
8. Carla – 314 Posts
7. Shannon -351 Posts
6. Black & White – 390 Posts
5. Weekly Photo Challenge – 394 Posts
4. Jesse – 404 Posts
3. Animals – 477 Posts
2. Portrait – 516 Posts
1. Flowers – 537 Posts

10 Most Popular Not People Categories:

10. Art – 243 Posts
9. Nature – 260 Posts
8. Personal Photo Project – 261 Posts
7. Road Trip – 288 Posts
6. Photography – 311 Posts
5. Black & White – 390 Posts
4. Weekly Photo Challenge – 390 Posts
3. Animals – 477 Posts
2. Portrait – 516 Posts
1. Flowers – 537 Posts

10 Most Tagged Humans

10. Jen – 222 Posts
9. Vest – 234 Posts
8. Willy – 238 Posts
7. Derrick – 267 Posts
6. Jay – 294 Posts
5. Mom – 300 Posts
4. Teresa – 312 Posts
3. Carla – 314 Posts
2. Shannon – 351 Posts
1. Jesse – 403 Posts

You may be wondering, what does it take to improve my Photography 139 Score? How do I get on the big board by the time Post 3750 comes around next August-ish?

1. Submit pictures for the WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE.
2. Assist or pose for photo projects.
3. Be related to me.

If you are wondering who is just outside of the top ten? The 3 people just outside of the Top Ten are Kim, Sara, and Logan.

Here are the current most popular pictures in the Photography 139 Gallery, by views in the last 365 days:


Iowa State vs. Northern Iowa
10. Iowa State Cyclones Football Varsity Marching Band – 514 Views

Howard Family Photo Shoot - 2017
9. Howards 2017 – 571 Views

Ortho 2 Holiday Card Portrait
8. Michelle – Computer Mine Holiday Card – 2018 – 690 Views

Iowa State vs. Iowa 2005
7. Cy beating down Herky – 746 Views

Rapid City Mission Trip - 2019
6. Rapid City Mission Trip – 776 Views


5. Autumn Sharp – 935 Views

January 1, 2019
4. Selfie Project – January 1, 2019 – 1251 Views

July 15, 2017
3. Selfie Project – July 15, 2017 – 1511 Views

Kentucky Vacation - 2008
2. Metropolis, Illinois – 2724 Views

January 14, 2019
1. Selfie Project – January 14, 2019 – 3215 Views

And these are the Ten Most Popular Albums in the Photography 139 Gallery by views in the last 365 Days (You can go to the album by clicking on the picture):



10. Autumn Sharp – 2020 -11,036 Views

SELF-PORTRAIT
9. Misc. Portraits – 11,198 Views

Ortho 2 Holiday Card Portrait
8. 2018 Computer Mine Holiday Card Portrait – 11,409 Views

Iowa State vs. Nebraska
7. Iowa State Cyclones Football – 2008 – 12,024 Views

Iowa State vs. Oklahoma = 2018
6. Iowa State Cyclones Football – 2018 – 12,715 Views

Naima at Dickcissel
5. Naima – 14,770 Views

Page 49 - Reject
4. Photo Journal Rejects – 14,872 Views

June 25, 2019
3. Selfie Project – 2019 – 37,416 Views

WEEK 180 - TRANSPORTATION - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT
2. Weekly Photo Challenge – Year 6 – 43,174 Views

9 Emotions Project - Anders Runestad
1. 9 Emotions Project – 58,863 Views

Whew! Well, I’m spent. Thanks to everybody that subscribes to this here blog. You are a big part of whatever success that is does have!

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This is your reminder that this week’s theme for THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE is FRAMED:


WEEK 212 - FRAMED
FRAMED!

Reminder that a FRAMED photo is a photo where your subjected is FRAMED by objects that aren’t the subject of the photo. Like a window. Or a door. Or literally anything that creates negative space.

Happy photo harvesting!

Candlelight Service

I have been working on something the last few days that nobody at all will care about, but I think is somewhat of an accomplishment:

I have added a SSL Certificate to my website and now my website is secure.

I know, you don’t care. Even my fellow miners at the Computer Mine aren’t impressed. That is okay. I live with only impressing myself on many a day.

What does it mean for you? Probably, absolutely nothing. But when you look up in the address bar of this here website, you will see a little lock so that you know your information is private when you send it to this site.


It is a beautiful lock. The most beautiful I’ve ever seen!

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The webmaster at my church requested that I take some pictures of the Candlelight Services on Christmas Eve. So I took a few pictures. Have a looksie:


Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

The room with the trees is where we take communion on Christmas Eve.

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Here is an update on my 10 Step Process to buying a drone.

  1. Car paid off. – I got the pink slip daddy!
  2. Training Budget Reimbursement – Bought about 10 books and signed up for an online portrait photography class that I will discuss someday.
  3. Purchase Popcorn Maker – The Union Street theater has procured its very own popcorn maker from Flat Earth Joe. The one that was borrowed from Andy’s friend of a friend has been returned.
  4. Computer Upgrade – I have completed upgrades on my home computer. I’ve put in a solid state drive to run the OS and the applications, I upped the RAM to 16 GB and I replaced the video card with a video card with twice the ram and that is capable of running 3 monitors.
  5. Figure out the effect of the Iowa GOP Tax Scam – The Iowa GOP Tax Scam will indeed result in me paying more taxes. There is about a $7 effect on my paycheck, meaning I am getting a tax cut of roughly $200. (Assuming the withholding from my paycheck is being done right.) However, since the Iowa GOP Tax Scam made it so a 6% sales tax is levied on all online purchases, I will be taxed well more than the $200 benefit. For example, I’ll pay over $100 in taxes on purchasing the drone that I wouldn’t have had to pay before the Iowa GOP Tax Scam became law. 
  6. Rear Brakes – I had the rear brakes replaced on my car last night. It costs me about 40% of what I was expecting Win!
  7. Computer Mine Bonus – Whether or not we get a profit sharing bonus should be determined in the next week or so.
  8. Bank Fraud Resolution – This is supposed to be resolved by January 31. I have my doubts. All indications are that my bank wants me to find a new bank. Perhaps a credit union. Perhaps I should talk to Nate’s friend.
  9. Federal GOP Tax Scam – I want to see if the Federal GOP Tax Scam will hurt my refund or not. I do not anticipate it will, but I don’t want a February surprise to hit the drone budget. 
  10. Change Jar – I want fill and return my change jar to the bank before I pull the trigger on the drone purchase. I think I have about 2-3 inches of coin to collect. This isn’t really a necessity, I just want to do it.

6 out of 10 completed. What isn’t mentioned in the 10 part plan is that I won a $250 gift card to Amazon at the Computer Mine Holiday Party.  That is a bonus 11th step. 

Post #3252 – 2018 Year in Review

Happy New Year to people who celebrate such things.

I like to look at some meaningless statistics every 250 posts and I also look at fairly meaningless year end statistics.

Just so happens that I get to combine them today!!

Here is both a year in review and a celebration that I have made it to 3252 blog posts. I was on the Alamo Bowl Road Trip visiting submarines, cults, and reality television stars when post #3250 came around, so I hope you can excuse the tardiness.

The first thing I want to look at are the most popular CATEGORIES in the history of “An Artist’s Notebook”.

Top 10 Journal Entry Categories

1. Portrait – 527
2. Weekly Photo Challenge – 504
3. Flowers – 497
4. Animals – 405
5. Jesse – 361
6. Photography – 355
7. Shannon – 320
8. Teresa – 296
9. Black & White – 291
10. Carla – 280

Top 10 People Categories

1. Jesse – 361
2. Shannon – 320
3. Teresa – 296
4. Carla – 280
5. Jay – 279
6. Mom – 277
7. Derrick – 256
8. Willy – 227
9. Vest – 221
10. Jen – 209

Top 10 Not-People Categories

1. Portrait – 527
2. Weekly Photo Challenge – 504
3. Flowers – 497
4. Animals – 405
5. Photography – 355
6. Black & White – 291
7. Road Trip – 262
8. Personal Photo Project – 261
9. Life – 234
10. Nature – 215

“Photography” and “Life” are general categories that I have been working on eliminating as I go back and restore historical “An Artist’s Notebook” entries to their original glory. Hopefully they will have both dropped off the Top 10 Lists by journal entry #3500.

If you are wondering how to become a Top 10 person on this list. The easiest way is to submit to the Weekly Photo Challenge. After that, the best way is to volunteer to model and photo assist for photography projects. Then after that, I would suggest going on road trips with me or attending Iowa State athletic events with me or going on road trips to Iowa State athletic events with me.

The people that are right outside of the Top 10 are:: Sara, Kim, Dawn, Becky, and Nader.

If you are looking for a goal for 2019, you could do worse than trying to crack the Photography 139 Top Ten People Category List. You obviously could do way, way, way, way, way, way, way better too.

Now we will turn out eye towards 2018.

Top 10 Most Popular Photography 139 Galleries of 2018 by Views

1. 9 EMOTIONS PROJECT – 48,722
2. WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE YEAR 5 – 37,614
3. WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE YEAR 5 – ALTERNATES – 33,622
4. 2008 – JANUARY – JUNE – 26,032
5. SELFIE PROJECT – 2017 – 23,141
6. HOUSTON MISSION TRIP – 2018 – 22,046
7. SOUTH DAKOTA TRIP – 2017 – 21,868
8. BOONE COUNTY FAIR CONTEST NOMINEES – 2018 – 17,211
9. SAYDIE HOWARD – CLASS OF 2017 – 14,808
10. IOWA STATE CYCLONES FOOTBALL – 2018

The 10 Most Popular Photography 139 Images by Views


Selfie Project - January 27
1. 2524

01-01-08
2. 2386


3. 2327

Kentucky Vacation - 2008
4. 1958

No. 45
5. 1621

No. 43
6. 1456

No. 12
7. 1445

July 15, 2017
8. 1321

WEEK 110 - REFLECTION - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT
9. 1293

No. 38
10. 1241

On the Instagram, these were my 9 Most Popular Photos based on Likes:


My theme for my 2018 Instagram posts was Black & White. My theme for 2019 will be HDR Toning. Also, I will be bringing back THE SELFIE PROJECT to Instagram in 2019.

You can follow me on Instagram here:

@christopherdbennett

I entered 3 photo contests with the following results:


Boone County Fair - 2018
Red Ribbon – Boone County Fair

Boone County Fair - 2018
Purple Ribbon – Boone County Fair

Boone County Fair - 2018
Blue Ribbon – Boone County Fair

Boone County Fair - 2018
Blue Ribbon – Boone County Fair

Boone County Fair - 2018
Blue Ribbon – Boone County Fair

Iowa State Fair Entry - 2018
Selected for Display – Iowa State Fair

Iowa State Fair Entry - 2018
Not Selected for Display – Iowa State Fair

Iowa State Fair Entry - 2018
Selected for Display – Iowa State Fair

Iowa State Fair Entry - 2018
Not Selected for Display – Iowa State Fair

Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest - 2018
1st Place Photoshop – Pufferbilly Days

Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest - 2018
1st Place Photojournalism – Pufferbilly Days

Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest - 2018
Pufferbilly Days

Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest - 2018
3rd Place Hidden Treasures of Boone County – Pufferbilly Days

Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest - 2018
Pufferbilly Days

Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest - 2018
Pufferbilly Days

Last note:

My goal for 2019 is the same as it was in 2018:

I’m gonna step my game up and get what is coming to me.

Good luck in 2019 everybody!

06-14-08

REMINDER

It is once again time for me (and by me, I mean you guys) to pick out my photos to enter in the Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest. Once again, I am going to leave it up to a popular vote.

The Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest allows you to enter up to 6 photos.

There are 4 Categories:

1. Nature
2. Photojournalism
3. Photoshop Enhanced
4. Hidden Treasures of Boone County.

I have selected 60 images for you to consider. To simplify things, I have split the 60 photos into 6 sets of 10. If you wish to exercise your enfranchisement, clicking on the link below will take you to Poll #1. Vote for one of those pictures and then move onto the next poll, until you have voted in all six polls.

The winner of EACH poll will be entered into the Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest.

Click on the link below to start voting:

Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest Nominees

Voting will end at midnight, August 8.

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TRIGGER WARNING!!! TRIGGER WARNING!!! TRIGGER WARNING!!!

If your name is Micky and you are a purpose of a cowardly disposition, be warned, snakes lie ahead!

Normally I don’t like to warn people that there might be something they find scary or offensive ahead. However, I know Micky is particularly scared of snakes. So much so, that he brokered a deal with his wife that she handles any snakes that they come across along the path of their wedded bliss.

The hype about him being a great outdoorsman might be a little overhyped.

Now that little bit of unpleasantness is out of the way, the images that come from the folder 06-14-08 are mostly from Ames on the Half Shell. However, some involve a snake. Some involve the Ames Party Bus.

Here are the pictures:


06-14-08

06-14-08

06-14-08

06-14-08


06-14-08


06-14-08


06-14-08


06-14-08


06-14-08

06-14-08

06-14-08

Ames Party Bus

Ames Party Bus

Ames Party Bus

Ames Party Bus

Ames Party Bus

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

06-14-08 - Burnin' Sensations

The snake was in Shorty and Doris’ flowerbed. The band that was playing Ames on the Half Shell was Burnin’ Sensations. They are still together and still playing. I haven’t seen them in several years, but back in the day, they used to be a real fun band to watch play.

By adding these pictures to the Photography Gallery, I was able to restore the following historic “An Artist’s Notebook” entries to their original glory:

Flowerbed Buddy

Burnin’ Sensations

There are more pictures from the Burnin’ Sensations that I didn’t include in this blog, but you can peruse them by clicking on the link below:

AMES THE HALF SHELL – 2008

Next week’s walk down memory lane will involve more Ames on the Half Shell, some Little League, and maybe, just maybe some tenderloining.

05-31-08

The photos in the folder 05-31-08 are quite unique. They include photos of Duff flooding. There are also photos of the first Ames on the Half Shell event I ever worked. There are also a couple of bonus images of some groundhogs that used to live behind the Computer Mine.

The flood and the Ames on the Half Shell both happened on the same day. The band that played that night was Redzband. They were kind of a generic classic rock cover band. This is basically the template for bands that played Ames on the Half Shell, at least back in the day.

Here is the funny thing (and don’t tell Shannon because she will think that I’m getting soft) looking at the Ames on the Half Shell pictures actually made me kind of nostalgic. I definitely wasn’t expecting that, but I think I’ll survive.

Here are the pictures:


Groundhog

Groundhog

Squaw Creek Flood - 2008

Squaw Creek Flood - 2008

Squaw Creek Flood - 2008

Squaw Creek Flood - 2008

Squaw Creek Flood - 2008

Squaw Creek Flood - 2008

Squaw Creek Flood - 2008

Squaw Creek Flood - 2008

Squaw Creek Flood - 2008

Squaw Creek Flood - 2008

Squaw Creek Flood - 2008

Squaw Creek Flood - 2008

Squaw Creek Flood - 2008

Squaw Creek Flood - 2008

Squaw Creek Flood - 2008

RedzBand - 05-30-2008

RedzBand - 05-30-2008

RedzBand - 05-30-2008

RedzBand - 05-30-2008

RedzBand - 05-30-2008

RedzBand - 05-30-2008

RedzBand - 05-30-2008

RedzBand - 05-30-2008

RedzBand - 05-30-2008

RedzBand - 05-30-2008

RedzBand - 05-30-2008

RedzBand - 05-30-2008

There are more pictures from Ames on the Half Shell out there. If you want to check them out, click on the link below:


Ames on the Half Shell – 2018

By adding these images to the Photography 139 Gallery, I was able to restore the following historic “An Artist’s Notebook” blogs to their original glory:

Redzband

More from Friday

Next Saturday’s walk down memory lane will involve Nader. Lots of Nader. Also some real cheeseball Photoshop. Exactly how I like it!

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Reminder, you have until next Tuesday at midnight to vote on what pictures I enter at the Boone County Fair Photo Contest. Click on the link below to vote:

BOONE COUNTY FAIR PHOTO CONTEST ENTRY SELECTION

You must have a Facebook account or a Google+ account to vote.

As of this writing, about 20 votes have been cast.

05-13-08

I have to confess, this is kind of a garbage collection of photos that are in folder 05-13-08.

I might have normally skipped these images, but I did post them in a blog back in 2008 for some reason, so I figured it was for the best that I go ahead an put them forth. Take ownership of the situation.

Back in the old days the Ames Jaycees adopted a flowerbed in Brookside Park, These pictures were taken when we were planting the flowers for that year. I think this was the last year that they managed this flowerbed. Dying organizations atrophy projects.


05-13-08

05-13-08

05-13-08

05-13-08

By adding these photos to the Photography 139 Photo Gallery, I was able to restore the following “An Artist’s Notebook” blog to its original glory:

Playing in the Mud

Next Saturday’s stroll down memory lane will involve buffalo and elk!