It’s one of those weeks where I’ve sat down at the computer pretty much every day, ready to write, but nothing good has come.  It happens.  Writer’s block, outside distractions, other projects…or all of the above.

So instead, here’s some interesting links I’ve come across in the past couple of weeks, starting with:

Thomas Czarnecki’s project, entitled From Enchantment to Down, which is sure to make the Disney executives stroke out when they see it.  It’s dark.  Outright morbid, even. And I keep coming back to look at it again.  It’s an arresting idea and very well executed.  I give Mr. Czarnecki major points for this one, as I think it’s harder to tap into these darker themes.  Anyone can shoot a bright, happy portrait that’s halfway decent; but it takes special vision to pull off something like this.

The latest “Photography Inspiration” post at From up North has some nice work featured in it.  I especially like the top photo, of the surfer from underwater.  I’d love to shoot this kind of thing.  Except I don’t live near a surf zone, or have an underwater housing…  And from what I understand, this kind of surf-zone shooting is pretty rough on the photographers, who tend to get bounced off the seafloor fairly often.  But what the heck, it still looks like tons of fun!   Check out the second-to-last photo as well; it’s a nice B&W portrait and I really like the play of shadow and light on the model’s face.  But I’ll be damned if I can figure out the point of that dress.  I guess showing your butt crack is fashionable now.

Essentials for Photographers had a good essay recently, one that leans towards the “rant” side of things, but rightfully so.  I found it an eloquent response to some other BS that’s been floating around the web.  All the links are included in the essay, so you can read the original BS material yourself, then the response.  Entertaining, for sure, but it also makes me roll my eyes and wonder how some folks have time to stir this sort of shit up in the first place.  I guess that’s the difference between actual photographers, and guys who sell BS accessories and spew their opinions for a living…

And for those of you who share my conservationist outlook, how about this article: The ugly truth behind our beautiful cameras.  Probably nothing earth-shattering in here, but it’s good food for thought.  The kind of thing that I think most of us realize, even if we don’t give it a lot of conscious thought.  We should give it more.  I’m not suggesting we all stop buying electronics altogether, but I think there is something to the idea of upgrading as needed, perhaps every few product cycles, as opposed to rushing out every 8 months to buy the latest iCrap, just because it’s “so cool.”   There’s a much higher cost to all this electronic waste than is initially apparent.

Oh, and this is a Katydid.  Because this post needs at least one photo.  Found this guy on the inside of my porch awning the other morning and wasn’t sure what he was.  Fortunately, a Google image search for “large green bug” clued me in.  Turns out that Katydids are nothing more than a large variety of grasshopper, albeit with rather more impressive camoflauge.  In a tree or brush, I’d never have noticed this guy.  Pretty cool!

A Katydid clings to the underside of the proch awning on 18 August 2012.

Brent Pennington is a freelance photographer and the driving force behind The Roving Photographer. When he\’s not working with portraiture or promotional clients, he’s usually in the field, hiking, or kayaking in pursuit of nature and wildlife shots.

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