I'm a space fan. Have been since I watched the Apollo 11 moon landing on my parent's TV when I was a wee, wee lad. I corrected my first-grade teacher on what the Gemini missions were about, gobbled up every mention of Skylab I could find in the media of the day, waited and waited and WAITED for the Space Shuttle program to finally start, and I was happy as a clam when they named the first shuttle "Enterprise". I remember exactly where I was when I heard that Challenger had blown up (Left hand turn lane on northbound Mill Ave, waiting to turn onto Southern). I still can't believe we have two rovers chugging along on Mars, and I'd love to have one of my sons fly a mission to there someday (and maybe take a trip up to orbit myself).
But we're reaching the end of an era: The space shuttle Atlantis landed today, marking the end of her time in space and the first of the shuttles to retire. Here's hoping there are more companies like SpaceX and Bigelow Aerospace willing to follow the path created by NASA.
A nation is only as big as it's dreams, and there is no bigger dream than the conquest of space.
Stopped by to shoot the breeze with Don last week, and we got to talking about the current state of photography and photography tools. We are both in love with our iPhones: Don likes Hipstamatic, I like Tilt/Shift Generator. Both of us agree that forcing ourselves to constrain our vision to work within iPhone does wonders for our shooting, because it makes us think about how we're going to get a shot out of what we have on hand.
One of the biggest mistakes a lot of beginning photogs make is equating more equipment with better photos. While there is definitely a place in photography for packing a location truck full of lights and cameras, the fact is, that process is identical to shooting with an cameraphone: You see the shot you want, and you take it with the camera you have.
When I was a full-time photog, my favourite camera wasn't my Nikons or the Hassies or the Sinar, it was my Olympus XA, a bare-bones (but well-built) compact 35mm camera. It had a great 35mm f2.8 Zuiko Lens, rangefinder focusing and aperture-priority exposure, and it was so small I could carry all the time.
I agree 100% with Chase Jarvis: The best camera is the one you have with you.