This and that… Upcoming stuff and Announcements

The classes are posted at San Diego City College for Spring 2020 semester and it does look like the Landscape class will run – if – if enough people sign up for it.  This will be one of the most extensive classes on the genre to be found anywhere.  Two instructors cover everything from the traditional foundations of the genre to the modern techniques and equipment; from the business angle of it to even the issue of surviving emergencies out in the field – this class will have it all.

For details click on the link in the banner above and sign up as soon as possible.

And for another not-so-subtle note from the shameless commercialization department… Steve Burns and I are putting together a workshop for Spring to be held in Santa Cruz dealing with using the Zone System concepts to take complete control of your digital shooting.  It will combine lecture and hands-on field work and in-lab editing instruction – a little of everything.  As soon as details are available, I’ll let you know.

And, one last announcement but one important to me on a personal basis.  I’ve just finished a book that made its way to my “bucket list”  for the last year or so but I never seemed to have time to start.  I’ve never considered myself a writer, but I did the “Future of Photography” book in 2017, the book on School Shooters in 2018, and now while it is still barely 2019, have done another one.  Go figure… But this one is not about photography or anything related to it.

Those first two books did not start out to be books at all.  The first was conceived as a treatise required for a sabbatical leave, and the second started as a blog entry based on some questions from students.  Both somehow got way out of control (imagine that) and ended up as book-length works.  I never saw them as commercial in nature but, with no discernible pattern, sales have been OK.  I’m not likely to retire to some exotic spot on them but they’ve at least more than paid for the efforts.  And hopefully the one on school shooters has had an impact on thinking about the subject and how to try to minimize or stop it.

But this latest piece was seen as a book from the first, and a very personal one at that.  Those readers that actually know me and have spent any time with me have probably been subjected to stories of the uncle that raised me and anecdotes from the time I spent on his farm and his attempts to teach me what he saw as the important old ways of his people (he was half Cherokee) and the values he felt were important.  A year ago, on a lark, I tried to look up his grave site (which I have actually been to) and found the cemetery has no record of it.  A look at Google Earth revealed that the area of the farm and the great woods that surrounded it are now housing tracts and part of greater Kansas City, a place that used to be “the big city” we would occasionally venture into.

That was so disorienting to me, it was like thinking all those memories were something out of the Matrix-like concept of imposed hallucination, so I even contacted old friends from back then to verify it had really happened. I was relieved to learn I had not completely fantasized a large portion of my life, but now was really distressed to learn that most of the signs of that life and those people were simply erased.  It was a very strange feeling.

But that exercise spurred me to want to finally write down at least enough to leave somewhere, even if only in a book nobody ever read, a memorial and tribute to the person I believe was the best man I ever knew; a man whose guidance changed my path from one of likely self destruction, to one following, with some success, my art and photography.  I think there are lessons in it for a lot of us.  If I had kids of my own it is the teaching I received from him and his modelling as a good man that I would want to pass on.  The book’s title is simply “Unk” which is what I called him.  Maybe I can do some of that teaching through this little homage to him.

The writing took me in some directions I had not planned, but in the end,  I think and hope it allows people to know something about the only real father figure I had, and maybe, in the process, reveal something about me.  Anyway, I just finished it and it is now available to order directly from Lulu Press.

I’d be honored to introduce him to you.  Here is the URL to my spotlight page where all of this recent series of books is listed:  Given a few days to process, it will be available through Amazon and Barnes and Noble but it will still likely be a little cheaper direct from the printer/publisher.

OK, that concludes the market section for this post so I’ll get back to things photographic with the next post as soon as I can.


About ndking

Commercial Photographer and Professor of Photography at San Diego City College
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