Archive for the • Wood Dickinson Sites Category

Mysteria in Tredecim

Posted in • Wood Dickinson Sites, Book, Chapbook, On Writing, Robin Randle Stories, Where Madness Dwells, Writing with tags , , , , , on 05/03/2016 by wooddickinson
Hekate's Key

The Key to Hell

Update. My novel The Robin Randle Stories, is with an editor. So I’m kind of stuck. That’s not really true, I am trying to get a new old house ready to move into. Our current home was built in 1941 but that’s not old enough anymore. Our new old house was built in 1919. Maybe as you get older you want everything around you to get even more older. I’m just saying.

So about three weeks ago I’m trying to wake up. I’m off the news feed until there is a story worth reading or seeing, that doesn’t have the word Trump in it. So while I’m waking up an idea hits me. When I first conceived The Robin Randle Stories it felt like it would contain three books in it, not just two. I always thought the first two would be the novel but I just felt that a third book would come along to round things out a bit. I didn’t know what that third book was until I was trying to wake up and avoid the new broadcasts.

It would be a book penned by Station Cross, Robin’s partner. The novel is in first person personal point of view so Robin has to be there all the time just like we are. There are things that happen that are a mystery to Robin as events unfold both because she just doesn’t remember things right and she’s just not there when people do other things. I realized Station does a lot of stuff Robin doesn’t understand or know about. The third book was born.

I started writing it and got well into it three times (that starting over again three times) before I got the feel of it right. To pay tribute to the false starts I gave the book three different titles. Station had to work through her “naming” of the book finally arriving at the simple title, The Thirteen Mysteries or Mysteria in Tredecim.

About 13,350 words later I think I have a solid draft. Took me about three weeks to get it to near finished condition. If that ever happens. I don’t know if it belongs in the novel or not. Funny how that works. I’ll let the editor make the call. I will always have it and can publish it as a chapbook if there is any interest after the novel comes out. Can’t sneak it out early, spoilers!

It was a lot of fun writing about Robin’s story from her partners point of view. Station has such a different voice. It is deeper and harder in a way but it does surprise at times with softness. I learned that she carries a different set of worries from Robin’s but no less difficult. So now all the mysteries are explained. How plans were made, what choices brought on later hardships and how Station puzzled out a way to help Robin even when she thought it would be impossible to do so.

I took a bit of time out yesterday to create another teaser trailer for the novel. Guess its the filmmaker in me. I also got Robin’s website up which is where you can see the new teaser. The URL is http://www.robinrandle.com. Oh, the three titles,

Mysteria Eleusiniaas

Sanctissimis Antiquioribus Ordinis Mysteria Eleusiniaas

also know as

The Thirteen Mysteries

(Mysteria in Tredecim)

written

by

Station Cross


Outrage!

Posted in Art, • Wood Dickinson Sites, Climate Change, Faith, family, Fear, God, Humility, Love with tags , , on 04/07/2016 by wooddickinson

4289975I get up this morning and I’m greeted by a news story on the radio about Ted Cruz making an unfortunate campaign stop in the Bronx. A man named Rebel Diaz yelled, “He is anti-immigrant. He denies climate change. He’s a right-winged bigot and he’s not welcomed here.” Wow.

I’m an artist and writer. The freedom to create work that may express a certain viewpoint is critical to me as it should be to all Americans. Expressing one’s opinions is part of the social discourse of our lives. Without this, we simply lose an entire part of who we are as individuals. Mr. Diaz has a right to his opinion and a right to express it in a peaceful manner. So does Ted Cruz. You may not like what Mr. Cruz has to say but vitriol is never a proper response. Respectful discourse is at the core of what we Americans are.

We as individuals must respect the views of others. We don’t have to be open to listening but we must act with respect. I think so many of us use our loud voice so we don’t have to truly listen to another’s views. I mean listening is dangerous because if you really listen and seek to understand (not agree) to another person’s feelings, thoughts, ideas you might find that you have to rethink your own views and maybe, just maybe change them.

For those who don’t know here is the first amendment to the constitution of the United States-

Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

No where in this amendment does it say I have the right to scream and disrupt public assembly. What it does say is that we have the right to assemble as a group to protest and give voice to our political beliefs but it must be done peaceably.

You don’t need a law degree to understand the constitution. It’s very plain. For instance, like it or not, the second amendment says we the people have the right to keep a well regulated militia as well as a right to keep and bear arms. Don’t shoot (pun intended) the messenger.

Amendment II

A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

Agree or not this amendment guarantees two things. #1 we can maintain a well regulated militia (army) and #2 we as individuals have a right to have a gun and use it when needed as long as its use isn’t in violation of the law meaning the commission of a crime. What it doesn’t say is that individual states have the right to control my ability to do so.

As an artist I feel all of the rights guaranteed in the constitution must be protected. I may not like it but when you chip away at one part you chip away at the whole. No good comes from that.

Remember our Declaration of Independence says –

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

What that means is we the people are in control not our government. Remember that we fought a war to gain relief from oppression by England.

I’m just sayin’

Once Again Adobe

Posted in Adobe, Art, • Wood Dickinson Sites, Computers, Fine Art Photography, Photo Editing, Photography, software, workflow with tags , , , , , , , , on 03/09/2016 by wooddickinson

100 in 365 version 2.0

I don’t mean to complain but Adobe can be a major pain in the ass. I’m an Adobe Creative Cloud member and rely on Lightroom and Photoshop a lot. I also use Audition and Premiere when I’m not using Logic Pro and Final Cut Pro. To be truthful I like the Adobe audio and video products but find Apple’s to be more conducive to creative flow. Logic works very well with my PreSonus control surface and I’ve never been able to get Audition to do the same.

I do create short teasers for both possible film projects and writing projects. I post them to YouTube and add them to my different websites. As for photography I’m pretty much married to Lightroom and Photoshop but also use a range of additional products like On1 Photo 10, the DxO Pro X suite, several Alien Skins filters and so on as ways to shorten my editing time. I spend on average two hours editing per photo that I post to my Adobe professional portfolio site now at http://wood.myportfolio.com/projects.

Now on to the issues, recently my Creative Cloud App stopped working. I could no longer download the software or the updates! I tried all the usual uninstall/install stuff Adobe says to do along with some special software that is supposed to fix these problems. Nothing worked. So, once again I’m paying for a service that I can no longer use. I called Adobe tech support and spent an hour on the phone with a woman from India that I could barley understand. It was obvious she was just a help desk kind of person and had no idea how to think beyond the instruction manuals she was reading from. Neither would she vary from the “Adobe Protocol” for support phone calls. After an hour she just gave up. Gave me a case number and said someone would call me within 24 hours.

Needless to say that didn’t happen but after a few days I did get a call from someone. They left messages and after several days and multiple misses I was able to be available for their phone call. You’d think they’d give me a number to call so I could make contact when I was available (not working) but no.

Another hour on the phone without a solution but at least I could understand this fellow and he did seem to know the systems and software much better. Another call back later and another hour on the phone I finally got the problem fixed BUT I had to download and reinstall all my Adobe software. That was an all day project.

While on these calls Adobe ran a program so they could control my computer remotely. The first woman I worked with was very poor at using this software and kept moving the pointer around putting my computer to sleep or ending the programs she was trying to run. I got to where I’d jump in to “save” her from the time consuming mistakes.

Upside. I did write a letter to Adobe corporate office after my first support call complaining about all this. demanded a year of Creative Cloud for free. I got the obviously stipulated 3 months of free service which I guess is better than none. Remember this. Demand free service when you have a failure of this nature. Really, it isn’t so free since I couldn’t install updates for about two months. It’s the very least they can do and really three months isn’t enough in my book.

Adobe could do a few things to improve on their service. First, have the people who I will talk to trained and ready to speak clear and understandable English. It’s just a common courtesy and nothing against any ethnic group. Put on your best public face I say and remove all barriers to customer satisfaction. Second, don’t make me demand free service, offer it up front again as a common courtesy to professionals using your product.

_______________________________________________

To remind you Adobe’s Vision and Mission are below. I used this company in a lecture I gave on corporate ethics last year.

Vision Statement: To revolutionize how the world engages with ideas and information.

Mission Statement:

Adobe’s mission is to be the premier provider of products and services in the information age for professional publishing solutions, business publishing solutions, document solutions, and digital imaging solutions in the company’s addressed market segments while: achieving and maintaining an above-average return on investment for shareholders measured in terms of return on equity, earnings per share, revenue growth, and operating profit; maintaining or achieving the number one or two position in addressed market segments in terms of market share, customer satisfaction, revenue generation, product margin, product functionality, and technological leadership; treating all employees with respect and rewarding both group and individual performance that exceeds commitments and expectations; being a good corporate citizen in the local and national locations where the company produces, sells, and services its products.

 

 

Back to It

Posted in Art, • Wood Dickinson Sites, Block Island, Blogroll, Book, Computers, Exhibition, Fine Art Photography, Photography, Robin Randle Stories, Where Madness Dwells, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 02/22/2016 by wooddickinson

sea grass 128I’m getting back to all of this social media stuff. There are days I feel like throwing the iPhone in the trash and turning off the computer like, forever! I think it’s because of the amount of static or noise that finds its way into my email, Facebook and well, everything else.

That doesn’t mean I’ve stopped paying attention just that the amount of useless information that’s pushed on us is incredible. It’s hard enough to read, learn and understand the important stuff in life that the noise has become impossible to handle. I don’t think I’m alone on this. It is a matter of filtering and getting filters in place is hard with our current technology. Current marketing practices demands you irritate everyone to get your message out. Targeting systems are getting better but the junk email just blows my mind.

I’m working on a few things. First my novel “The Robin Randle Stories” is with my editor now. Hope to see it published soon. I’m starting a new novel, “Mercy Lake – a ghost story.” I’m also working on a photography project called “A Study of Pathways.”

I will have an exhibition next summer for the Block Island Conservancy. I’m very excited about that. It’s wonderful to be involved in such an important effort. Here are some websites of mine if you are interested –

Wood Dickinson – my main portal and links to everything else

The Robin Randle Stories

A Study of Pathways

Mercy Lake 

Photographic Portfolio

I’ll be much more regular about writing. I do have a lot to say!

 

Why I Hate Digital Cameras, phones, computers, etc…

Posted in abandoned, Amazon, Apple, Art, • Wood Dickinson Sites, Black and White, Color, Photography with tags , , , , , , , on 10/11/2014 by wooddickinson

nkd810It never fails. I bought a Mac Mini and within a month Apple released a new Mac Mini that is ten times better than the one I just bought. This summer I bought a Nikon D800 camera. It’s a fabulous piece of technology and light years ahead of my “over the hill” D2Xs.

So now, Nikon has a replacement for the D800! It’s the D810. What happens? The price of the D800 falls through the floor. I can’t trade up to a D810 without spending $1500 to $2000. I’m so over this kind of business. I think a company that sells a high-end piece of technology should offer some kind of price protection or reasonable upgrade path for those people who have a suddenly obsolete (but very expensive) piece of tech.

I spent about $2500 for my D800 camera body. Thank God lenses can’t be obsoleted! I checked the price for a new D800 and it seems to be around $2,900 today. The D810 lists for $3,300. With the new camera out the price for a used D800 is dropping. Currently I could buy one for $2,300. So you know what I’d get on a trade.

This drives me crazy. Leica did the same thing when it introduced the M8. They said it would be a stable product and upgradable. They weren’t going to leave owners holding the bag. Guess what, Leica released an interim M8.2 then replaced that with the M9. Now they just call it the Leica M. Price for the M? $7,000 (body only). The M9 still sells for $7,000 too. My old M8 cost $2,400. I will say the value is holding for that camera. I see them selling for $1,700 on Amazon but the M7 (a 35mm film camera) is selling for $5,000. Oh hey, if you really want to be stupid Leica has a M version that shoots only Black & White digital images. Price, $8,000!

There was a time I used the beautifully crafted Nikon F5 35MM film camera. Again it cost about $2,400 but today you can get your very own for only $350. That’s a travesty. The F5 is a machine. All mechanical and the craftsmanship that goes into producing one is incredible.

That $2,400 range is about what I paid for my Nikon D2Xs. It was a top of the line Digital camera. Today they sell for $650. When Nikon release the D2’s replacement the price jumped to $6,000! Same as the Leica.

This is a hopeless situation. There is no doubt that my D800 is a fabulous camera. I will be using it for years. I just hate knowing within four months of purchasing it, it’s replaced and takes a huge hit on its value. Maybe that’s why I love film cameras. You can’t play this game.

I have no doubt there is a Nikon D820 just lurking around the corner to challenge the D810 buyers of today. This way of treating customers and I mean customers who are spending a lot of money with your company is over the moon. At some point in time the electronics industry (be it cameras, phones or computers) must find a better way. Leaving customers out in the cold like this is just not right.

Current Shows

Posted in 100 in 365, Amazon, Art, • Wood Dickinson Sites, Exhibition, Fine Art Photography, HDR, Kansas City, Photo Editing with tags , , , , , , , , on 09/05/2014 by wooddickinson

Ireland ReImaginedGood times. Busy times. I want everyone to know the Cafe Trio show is now closed. I want to thank Chris for helping mount and strike the exhibition.

Currently I have work up at Fabulous Foo’s in Ranchmart Shopping Center. It will close Oct. 31st. If you want your own copy of any of these 15 photographs visit the gift shop  or email me at wood@wooddickinson.com.

Fairway Frames also has  some photos up in their window till September, 30th. While there you can see a copy of my recent book, “100 in 365. Version 2.0.” Visit the gift shop at wooddickinson.com to order a standard edition or splurge and buy the special edition both numbered and signed. Very few left.

These 15 exhibited prints are still for sale for a bit longer. Any question call me at 913-667-9339.

Thanks for the outpouring of support.

Wood

 

New concerns – Iceland volcano: magma moving towards new volcanic system – could set off another volcano

Posted in • Wood Dickinson Sites, Climate Change, Earth, Fear, Volcano with tags , , on 08/27/2014 by wooddickinson

More to come…

The Extinction Protocol

August 2014 ICELAND – The magma from Iceland’s Bardarbunga volcano could be moving towards another large volcanic system. Data recorded by a team from the University of Cambridge suggests that 50 million cubic meters of molten rock has moved in the last 24 hours. If it continues on a northern trajectory it could feed into the Askja volcanic system, potentially triggering a large eruption. Prof Bob White said: “It’s headed straight for it.” But he cautioned that volcanoes were hard to predict. “It’s moving at about 4km a day towards Askja, and if it keeps going it will get there in a few days,” he told BBC News. “We know there is a lot of molten rock sitting under the ground beneath Askja, which is a major volcanic system. If this molten rock hits that, we know it is likely to trigger it to erupt. “But who knows, it…

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