KKH Photos: Blog https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog en-us Karen Hoar, WWW.KKHPhotos.Com kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) Mon, 16 Mar 2020 07:26:00 GMT Mon, 16 Mar 2020 07:26:00 GMT https://www.kkhphotos.com/img/s/v-12/u65336207-o706538297-50.jpg KKH Photos: Blog https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog 90 120 Open Letter To The Mother Of The Newest Young Photographer https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2019/3/open-letter-to-the-mother-of-the-newest-young-photographer Dear Mother of the newest young photographer;

I saw you and your young son today as I was walking through one of those stores that sells pretty much everything you could ever need. Our paths repeatedly crossed as we filled shopping carts full of groceries. You had already done some shopping. What I picked up from the passing glimpses of the conversation between you and your son that shopping was so he could choose his birthday surprise. I'm guessing he was somewhere between 10 or 12 years old.

It seems that in the previous months you had listened and heard him tell you how he wanted to be a photographer when he grows up, and for his birthday, you had surprised him by taking him to pick out his very first camera. A small point and shoot that I imagine had a price tag of somewhere around $15.

This glimpse into your conversation peaked my interested as I was 10 years old when I told my mother I wanted to be a photographer; she however was not so supportive of that idea. But you were determined to help your little boy get a taste of that dream.

As we continued on our similar path through the aisles of paper plates, cereal boxes, pickle jars, and frozen pizzas I was privileged to capture more glimpses into your lives as the conversation continued between the two of you.

Camera Collection

He was happily hugging the box with his newest prized possession inside and asking all kinds of questions and making all kinds of plans. And you, Mother of the newest young photographer, had all the answers and all the encouragement a kid could ask for.

He asked you if this meant that he was now a real pro photographer and your answer was that as soon as he started taking pictures he would be a photographer. You then told him that to be a pro photographer he would have to work hard, learn lots,  and practice lots.

He seemed good with that answer as I got the next glimpse while our paths crossed near the big bags of potatoes. I heard him telling you that he knew how to work hard because he helped to take care of Grandma's garden last summer and he could learn lots because he like to read. I couldn't hear his plans for practicing but as I looked up while I grabbed the packages of ground beef I could see the excitement in his body langue.

As you passed again I heard plans to visit the library and find all the photography books that they had and the excitement was very clear in his voice. You were telling him how you would help him search the internet for lessons, tips, and ideas. You explained to him how he was going to have to read the owners manual; probably more than once.

Our paths crossed again near the bags of shredded cheeses, bricks of cream cheese, and cartons of eggs. I caught another glimpse into your conversation then and it had turned to someday. How someday he would need to save his own money to buy his next camera. How someday that next camera would be more complicated. How someday he would need to learn programs like Photoshop. How someday he would be old enough to share pictures on Facebook.

We crossed paths for the last time as we stood in side by side checkout lines waiting for our turn to finally leave the store and his turn to finally begin a new chapter in his life as the newest young photographer. I heard him tell the cashier how he was going to be famous and how he was going to take pictures of mountains, oceans, tigers, and even presidents. I heard him tell her that he didn't need a bag he would just carry his box out like it was. I heard him tell her that he was going to open it as soon as they got in the car. I also heard you tell him to tell the cashier thank you, I also heard you remind him that he needed to tell Grandma thank you for the birthday money, and I also heard you remind him that he had lots to learn and not to brag too much.

I just wanted to let you know that I for one think you are doing an amazing job with your little man. You seemed to have all the right answers to encourage him but to also let him know it was not going to be easy.

I also wanted to encourage you to help him to reach out to professional photographers in your town, and follow professionals online. Even help him to post questions in photography forums and learn from the years of experience that they have. You will find some that wont' give him the time of day but you will find others that will love to help him. Shoot; have him send me a message. I'd be happy to answer all the questions I can!

I have often wondered where I'd be today if I had begun this adventure when I was 10 instead of having to wait until many many years later. He is going to have so much time to learn and grow as a photographer. I do hope he finds that he enjoys it as much as it looks like he is going to and that he sticks with it over the years to come.

Who knows you just might have the next Annie Leibovitz, Steve McCurry, Robert Frank, or Margaret Bourke-White on your hands.

Keep up the good work Mother of the next professional photographer to take the world by storm. I'm sure in a few years everyone is going to get a glimpse into your little man's life as they cross paths with him in a famous art gallery or online as he blogs about his adventurous adventures.

Stock up on those picture frames; you're going to need them!


kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) future photographer kid photographer new photographer photographers in osborne kansas photography shopping https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2019/3/open-letter-to-the-mother-of-the-newest-young-photographer Sun, 31 Mar 2019 01:52:12 GMT
Horses, Hugs, Hospitality, and Heartfelt Conversations https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2019/3/horses-hugs-hospitality-and-heartfelt-conversations Family, Friends, Faith, Fellowship, Fun, Fossils, Photography, Fire truck, campfire... wait the alliteration kind of fell apart there.

Let's try that again.

Campfire, Crafts, Comfort, Caring, riding... oops lost it again.

Third time's a charm; right?

Riding, Roping, Ranch. AhHmmmmmm Bullwhipping?


Ok; so I'm no Dr Seuss but the Annual Women's Retreat put on by Christ Centered Retreats of San Antonio, Tx is just as much fun as reading one of his tongue twisting books!

This was my second year to have the privilege of traveling to Texas to attend and shoot this event. You might ask how does a photographer from a small Kansas town end up shooting a Christian women's retreat on a ranch in the Texas Hill Country? Well... one of my sisters[LP] happens to be the driving force behind CCR and is currently serving as their director while another of my sisters[DE] is a board member. Those two along with a third[CH] teach classes at the retreat, a fourth[CA] does all the driving to get us Kansans down there and back, we are all what they call Madrinas, and you should see the quilts that CH sews to raise money for the organization. The list of things those ladies do to support and build CCR is endless. Yes; the phrase that I have often heard in my lifetime, "never under estimate the power of an Ashby woman", is all to true. My Aunt told me more than once that we could rule the world if we wanted to. I imagine that when you get 6 strong willed and stubborn sisters together mountains could be moved. Although we might also have to recruit our brothers, sister-in-laws, nieces, nephews, children, grandkids, cousins and more to get that job done but I have no doubt we could do it!

There I go again chasing rabbit trials.... got off topic didn't I.


Ok, so back to the ranch. There's Lessons, Longhorns, Love. There's Singing, Sharing, Smiles, and yes there's also tears. Tears, Teaching, Talking, Testimonies. Prayers, lots of prayers. There's Horses, Hugs, Hand-holding, Handshakes, Hospitality, and Heartfelt conversations.

But most of all there's a group of women who I have no doubt will change the world. In fact some of them already have; or at least have changed their own little corner of it.

I don't know if the 2020 Christ Centered Retreats Annual Women's Retreat will be held at the same Silver Spur Ranch location or if, just to change things up a bit, a new location will be found; but I do know that no matter where this event is held it will be a great one. So if you have the opportunity check them out and maybe, ladies, just maybe, sign up to attend next year's retreat. I'm sure you will enjoy every moment of it and remember it as one of the best Snapshots of your life. Oh did I mention that a little birdie tells me the theme for the next one will be Snapshots. Hmmmm; right up my alley!


kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) 2019 christ centered retreats christian women's retreat kansas osborne osborne kansas photographers in osborne kansas photography san antonio san antonio texas silver spur guest ranch texas texas hill country https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2019/3/horses-hugs-hospitality-and-heartfelt-conversations Fri, 22 Mar 2019 18:10:02 GMT
Competition Presentations Fellowship and Family https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2019/2/competition-presentations-fellowship-and-family Load Em UpLoad Em Up- Entered in the KPPA Image Competition at the February 2019 Winter Expo. This image received a score of 80 out of a possible 100; reaching the Deserving of a Merit level. Once in the head to head for the Photographic Open - General Exhibit - Illustrative Category - it just missed out on receiving any awards.

Here we go again wrapping up another great KPPA event. This time it was the annual Winter Shutter Expo held in Manhattan, Ks with great speakers, image competition, education, networking, and fellowship. 

I entered four images into the competition this year, Future Queen, The Gate Keeper, Cold Days, and Load 'Em Up. They did alright with the first two scoring 79 and second two scoring 80. The judges have no idea who created the images or what that person's skill level is, what other awards they may have earned, what their experience or educational backgrounds are. They could be looking at an image created by a Master Photographer or they could be looking at an image created by someone who has just picked up a camera for the very first time. Each image is judged on it's own based on the 12 Elements of a Merit Image. When an image earns 80 or above out of a possible score of 100 it is considered to be Deserving of a Merit and then goes on to a head to head type judging. Those images reaching 80 and above are separated into two levels, Masters and General Exhibit, and divided by the categories they were entered in such as wedding, children, or in the case of my four entries this year illustrative. The judges then look at those merit level images in each category and a first, second, and third place is decided. 

Future QueenFuture Queen- Entered in the KPPA Image Competition at the February 2019 Winter Expo. This image received a score of 79 out of a possible 100.

The competition is only a part of the Kansas Professional Photographers Association's Winter Expo. It's a great opportunity to learn from amazing speakers too. The educational opportunities vary at KPPA events and this year's conference featured three very creative ladies. Patty Geist spoke about finding inspiration and finding your mojo. She included a couple of quotes in her presentation and my favorite is "Be weird. Be random. Be who you are.". I need to do that. Be whoever I am; and stop trying to create images that are "technically correct" and get to creating images that I enjoy more. Toni Harryman spoke about print competition and fine art photography. She creates some amazing images; a simple leaf becomes a beautiful work of art in her hands. I have the most random and crazy notes from Toni's presentation I jotted down things like; Feed The Artist Within, VISUALIZE, Big Ideas Grow From Little Things, Don't Be Scared To Be Different, Put Good In, and Go Further Than You Think You Should. Among my notes  from that afternoon I also included the quote; "Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth (without caring twopence how often it has been told before) you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed it." Yep; I need to work on creating more original art and get out of this rut I've been in. Our third creative speaker at this conference was Kristy Steeves who taught a class about portrait posing and her amazing lighting technique. Unfortunately when the bright strobes started to flash in the darkened room I had to leave the class when vertigo reared its ugly head.

Cold DaysCold Days- Entered in the KPPA Image Competition at the February 2019 Winter Expo. This image received a score of 80 out of a possible 100; reaching the Deserving of a Merit level. Once in the head to head for the Photographic Open - General Exhibit - Illustrative Category - it just missed out on receiving any awards.

In between the scheduled activities, lectures, and classes that KPPA has to offer at these events there is always time to network, hang out with friends, and learn even more about the art and business of photography while engaging in conversations with other members. Some of the best ideas come out of those friendly conversation; like the time a group of of us had a brainstorming session to help a member with some fresh marketing ideas and the time our print chair gave me an invaluable tip about editing the eyes on my animal images. There are those times whens this group of people seem like extended family.

Kansas Professional Photographers AssociationKansas Professional Photographers Association

Our new president recently said "...that is exactly what we are --family. We watch each other's back..." That family has grown and changed and changed again since its begging in 1939 and continues to grow and change today. If you are a Kansas photographer WE WANT YOU to become part of our family. Visit KPPA.org to learn how you can Join us at F-Stops, Join us at Expos, Join us today and gain this extended family and just see if we don't grow on you.

I look forward to seeing you at our next event!

The Gate KeeperThe Gate Keeper- Entered in the KPPA Image Competition at the February 2019 Winter Expo. This image received a score of 79 out of a possible 100.


kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) kansas photographers association kppa photographers in osborne photographers in osborne kansas photography photography competition photography education photography groups photography organizations https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2019/2/competition-presentations-fellowship-and-family Fri, 15 Feb 2019 04:53:46 GMT
Vibrant Colors https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2019/2/vibrant-colors Vibrant Colors.

kansas wheat fieldGolden FieldsThis vast golden wheat field spreading out beneath the big blue sky is just one of the beautiful scenes you'll find in my neck of the woods.

They tell me that 2019 is the year of the vibrant colors.

Who knew! My choice of using orange on my website and logo has accidentally fallen into style!! 

I've always wanted to be in style.

Color is a powerful tool. It can draw attention where you want it, it could even set a mood and influence emotions.

floral photographyEnchanted Spring

Vibrant color stands out from the background and emits energy. Oh, I need energy!!

Colors like orangy orange, bright blue, really red, sunny yellow, grassy green, and passionate purple conjure up feelings of excitement and draw people in.

colored pencilsPotential ArtWhat would you create with a new box of colored pencils?

They say we will see vibrant colors everywhere this year. That's a good thing.

Adding more color to the world is always a good thing.

abstract art oil and water printOil And Water #3For this colorful image I had some fun with a clear glass baking dish, water, cooking oil, and a colorful torn paper background.

kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) 2019 colors photographers in osborne kansas photographic prints photography vibrant colors https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2019/2/vibrant-colors Mon, 04 Feb 2019 21:22:01 GMT
A Thousand Words And The Task At Hand Is Done https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2019/1/a-thousand-words-and-the-task-at-hand-is-done A picture is worth a thousand words...

in 1861 the Russian writer Ivan Turgenev wrote, "The drawing shows me at one glance what might be spread over ten pages in a book."  - Napoleon Bonaparte said "A good sketch is better than a long speech" - The expression "Use a picture. It's worth a thousand words." appears in a 1911 newspaper article quoting newspaper editor Tess Flanders -  "One Look Is Worth A Thousand Words", appears in a 1913 newspaper advertisement for the Piqua Auto Supply House of Piqua, Ohio. - Fred R. Barnard, promoting the use of images in advertisement in 1927, wrote "One Picture Worth Ten Thousand Words" and labeled it a Chinese proverb so that people would take it seriously. - The actual Chinese expression is something more like; "Hearing something a hundred times isn't better than seeing it once."

 -From Wikipedia

In 1911 the Eastman Kodak Company advertised their Brownie cameras with the words "Make the happiness of to-day a pleasure for many to-morrows with a picture record of your summer outing." "You can make good pictures with a Brownie."  

I like those words; make the happiness of today a pleasure for many tomorrows.

Cold DaysCold Days

I'm pretty sure that the  thousand words Tess Flanders had in mind were nothing like the thousand words that come to my mind when I think of images right now. I imagine Tess was thinking of words that describe what was being seen in the picture. More poetic descriptive type words for images; perhaps a shiny new red wagon bringing up thoughts of childhood, summer days, and laughter. I imagine that in a few weeks my mind will get back to words like that when I look at a picture but right now....

Right now when I look at an image the words that come to my mind are more like technical words and post-processing terms:

read, listen, talk, learn, teach, share, thought, idea, site, feel, view, create, Canon, camera, DSLR, viewfinder, lens, prime, fixed, memory card, sensor, Speedlite, flash, digital, optical, compression, mirror, shutter, aperture, speed, F-Stop, ISO, pixels, light, highlight, shadow, exposure, bulb, bracket, meter, histogram, white balance, line, shape, form, texture, pattern, bokeh, color, contrast, space, balance, zoom, blur, focus, DOF, composition, color, technique, format, KPPA, PPA, Creative Cloud, Adobe, LightRoom, PhotoShop, Topaz, Nik Efex, RAW, CR2, TIFF, PSD, JPG, file, noise, resolution, layers, selection, clone, curves, dodge, burn, vignette, opacity, feather, vibrancy,  saturation, desaturation, gradient, sharpen, mask, patch, crop, resize, rotate, scale, transform, adjustment, canvas, filter, stroke, title, upload... and about a thousand more.

Because right now I am in post-processing mode. I've gotten tips from some amazing Master Photographers, Master Artists, and experienced photography mentors. They have filled my mind with words like those as they share their knowledge and talent to help me, and many others, prepare for the Kansas Professional Photographers Association 2019 image competition at our Winter Expo.

And now...

Right now!

The only word left in my mind from those thousand words, when I look at the images I have been working on over the last few weeks, is DONE.

The task at hand is DONE!

For now I am done with the edits on those images. They have been resized and sent off to our Print-Chair and, are now mixed among so many others and, awaiting the eyes of those who will come from all corners of the country to judge them. The eyes of those who, when they see these pictures, will have words of their own. Words like: impact, technical excellence, creativity, style, composition, presentation, color balance, center of interest, lighting, subject matter, technique, and storytelling.

Oh so many words really are held in each and every image. I just hope that I have been successful in capturing those words.

Future QueenFuture Queen


kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2019/1/a-thousand-words-and-the-task-at-hand-is-done Tue, 29 Jan 2019 17:45:23 GMT
The Time Spent - January 1 to January 1 https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2019/1/year_in_review_2018 The time spent between January 1 and January 1 seemed to fly by; and for KKH Photos it was all a great time.

2018 started with a trip to the first Kansas Professional Photographer's Association's event of the year, an image competition workshop. It was a great time to "test out" images that I was thinking about fixing up and entering in competition and a great opportunity to learn from some of the best in the state. And it was time to visit with photographer friends not often seen. I think that just might be the best way to welcome in a new year.

When it was time for our Winter Expo, where the competition is held, I filled pages and pages of notes while listening to the judging and the speakers and enjoyed the time with other photographers and friends. Events like this really boost your energy and get you lit up and ready to take on all the times to come in the year ahead.

A Days JourneyA Days Journey- Entered in the KPPA Image Competition [Photographic Open] at the Winter Expo in February 2018. This image received a score of 76 out of a possible 100.

I did something new with a bit of my time this year; I was invited to help the Osborne County Community Foundation with a little project. They were creating a county wide community calendar so that everyone in our little county would know what events were happening in each town. Now they can easily plan how they will spend their time. It's a great idea and I hope they keep working on it and that it grows so more and more people take advantage of it. -Oh, what was it they wanted my time for? Images, of course. Amazing what a variety of opportunities this little ol' camera of mine has created for me.

Speaking of this little ol' camera... it took me on an adventure to a ranch in Texas where I spent time with an amazing bunch of women at a Christian Women's Retreat, hosted by Christ Centered Retreats. I photographed their time together and did my best to captured the fun they had sharing their faith and learning from each other. I don't know yet if my camera and I will make this trip again in 2019; that time has yet to be planned.

While the new of helping the OCCF and CCR was a welcome and much needed change the year continued on with the usual shutter clicks; like my favorite trips to the zoo and shooting those big beautiful burst of colors at fireworks shows. 

MajestyMajesty- Entered in the KPPA Image Competition [Photographic Open] at the Winter Expo in February 2018. This image received a score of 79 out of a possible 100.

The usual, however, was once again improved upon when I had the opportunity to spend time sharing my work. Yes KKH Photos was invited, for the first time ever!, to show prints at an art gallery! The Gallery in Phillipsburg, Ks my be a bit on the small side but having the chance to be part of it was an amazing way to spend some time! I hope that I can do it again.

One little part of the usual that I didn't get to do again in 2018 was to shoot the Alton Jubilee. I missed running all over town, camera at the ready, to capture one activity after another from sun up to sun down at this amazing small town event. It was just one of those times when I couldn't do two things at once. Next year. Opps, I mean this year. I'm sure I'll be back to capturing the fun once again. Boy I hope the weather is not to hot that day!!

More of the usual shutter clicking time came in the form of Little Dawgs Football games and small local events like the first ever Oz Fest. Oh that was a fun night when I went from walking lap after lap around the football field to shoot the lasts home game of their undefeated season, right to shooting the great bands at the Oz Fest. I filled up the BIG memory card that night!

Oz Fest 2018

It was a bit like Déjà Vu when I found myself on a ranch once again in the fall of 2018. This time it was a ranch in Kansas where KPPA held our Fall Expo. I may have had a little vehicle trouble while I was there, and I may have had to miss a few of the awesome opportunities that Medicine Lodge and KPPA held for our time there, but thanks to a friend I was able to keep going. Thanks for playing taxi driver William! 

There was a second moment of Déjà Vu when I had a second opportunity to show, and this time sell, a few prints. I took advantage of a double space at a craft and vendor show to in Glasco, Ks and not only sold crafty creation but displayed and sold KKH Photos' prints. This was the third year that I have had the privilege of spending time at this fundraiser for their local VFW. There's a great bunch of people there and I'm happy to be invited to be a small part of  things.

The usual way time that involves any mentoring is spent is with a Master Photographer helping me to learn some new editing idea and giving me tips to improve my work. This year I was happy to abide by the KPPA Code of Ethics which, in part, says: "...Support efforts for and assist in the education of all interested persons and the general public in the art and science of professional photography..." by doing a little mentoring of my own when I had the opportunity to spend time with a friend who wants to learn more about photography. I do hope that in the coming year we will have more time to spend together as she ventures deeper into the world of photography.

Aside from KKH Photos I'll add to all of that: time spent with friends at a ladies group called Craft 'N Chat and serving as secretary/treasurer for them, time spent working for The Craft Basket, time spent working for myself with trips to and from craft shows for KKH Crafts, time spent assisting Christ Centered Retreats by creating and maintaining their website and blog, continuing to maintain a website for a friend, managing multiple Facebook pages for myself and for others, working towards gaining some control over migraines and managing other health issues, trips to visit my kids and even time to "baby sit" my grand-puppies, time spent with other family members, my small contribution to KPPA by serving on the board, a tiny bit of time helping a small group of kids paint rocks at a summer library program - that was a fun break!, there were good times at the county fair, time spent with those many many many crafty projects that needed completed, a little time spent helping my daughter and son-in-law move, and time spent helping a friend move (WAIT! I AM NOT KKH MOVING CO.!!), and those rare moments when time was spent just hanging out with family.

Yes; it was a very full year.

2018 has ended now. My kids have picked through the prints I have on hand and taken the ones they like home with them. My to do list includes things like -clean gear -clean out and organize bags -shoot a few new stock photos -shoot those quick family pictures for the church directory -and start the new year with a trip to the first Kansas Professional Photographer's Association's event of the year; an image competition workshop. And after that? Well I imagine that 2019 will be filled with time much similar to 2018; and that is time I look forward to.





kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) 2018 kkh photos photographers in Osborne Kansas year in review https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2019/1/year_in_review_2018 Tue, 01 Jan 2019 20:05:31 GMT
Charge Up Your Batteries; Christmas Time Is Here! https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/12/charge-up-your-batteries-christmas-time-is-here Charge up your batteries; Christmas time is here!

Your camera batteries that is.

There's going to be more photo ops this month than there are cookie crumbs in Santa's beard.

With all the excitement of Christmas at hand I thought I would share a few tips and ideas to help you get the most out of your holiday photos.

You know you're going to be taking a lot of them! So while your batteries are charging take a few minutes to read through these; and maybe you'll find something here that you can use.

  1. Charge your batteries, format your memory cards, clean your lenses, pick up extra flash batteries, and get all your gear packed safely in your camera bag and ready to go.
  2. Be sure, when you are heading out the door, that you don’t forget to take the camera. Sunday school programs, high school plays, office parties, caroling, and trips to Grandma’s are all great photo ops!
  3. Capture all the memories of Christmas, from cookie baking and decorating to that turkey dinner and the big gift exchange, it’s all part of the traditions that you will want to hold dear.
  4. When photographing your Christmas tree get in close to some of those special ornaments as well as that nice wide shot of the whole tree. Try setting your camera’s white balance to tungsten if those Christmas lights images just don’t seem to have the right colors.
  5. When taking a photo of just one person, or one object, try positioning them slightly off center for a more interesting image. And don’t forget to take a look at the background before pressing that button. We don't want Aunt Marge to have a tree branch grow out of her ear now do we?
  6. While the kids are opening their gifts on Christmas morning get down on their level and shoot in continuous mode to capture that joy and excitement as they anticipate the newest and greatest toys of the season! Or the not so excited faces as they open that new pair of gym socks.
  7. Wide shots that show the entire scene are great you will want one or two of  these; but be sure to get in close too. Fill the frame with your subject and cut out that distracting busy background.
  8. Consider shooting in aperture priority mode on Christmas day. Use a wide aperture like f/2.8 or f/4 to give the background a nice soft blur or a narrow aperture like f/8 or f/11 to keep everyone in focus.
  9. When taking those photos of the Christmas lights try to find that balance between sunny afternoon and black of night. Too bright out and the lights won’t show up. Too dark and you won’t see anything else in the scene.
  10. To better your chances of getting the whole gang with their eyes all open at the same time take at least three shots for each of your group photos. More if you’ve got fidgety kids!
  11. When photographing a snowy scene your camera can be esaily fooled into underexposing the image. This gives the beautiful white snow a less than appealing blue or gray cast and a very unnatural look. To fix this problem use your camera’s exposure compensation feature and force an additional 1 or 2 stops of light. Look for a little +1 or +2 symbol.
  12. One last tip… be ready… shoot quickly… and shoot often!




kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/12/charge-up-your-batteries-christmas-time-is-here Wed, 05 Dec 2018 21:55:07 GMT
10 Tips For Zoo Photography https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/10/10-tips-for-zoo-photography This past weekend I had an opportunity to make a trip to a near by zoo with my hubby, D, and a great friend, DL. Now you all know that I could spend the whole day at the zoo. I'd much rather capture images of lions and tigers and bears than to capture a senior portrait any ol' day! So as you can imagine I had a great time. Did I come home with lots of amazing images. No. But I did add a couple to my collection that I am happy with.

The Gate KeeperThe Gate Keeper

D has been building up his photography skills for a couple of years now and doesn't need my help any more. You should see some of the shots he got of the bears playing in the water in a new enclosure at the little zoo in Great Bend, Ks. [The same zoo he and DL and I just visited.]

DL on the other hand is just getting a start at building up her photography skills and that got me to thinking....... I should do a post with a few random tips. What better subject to make a list of tips for than the zoo!!

So listed in no particular order...a few random tips for your zoo photography safari.

  1. A nice zoom lens is a must. Something with an upper reach of 200mm to 300mm would be awesome. Or a good point and shoot with a nice 10x to 12x super zoom would also work. The nice long reach will help you get through the bars and wires of those enclosures. Having said that....I personally do not own such a lens and do all my zoo photography with my Canon EF 24-105mm f/4 L lens. While not the ideal length for zoo photography it is an awesome lens and does produce nice images!
  2. Stability. You must keep your camera steady while shooting anything. Use a tripod if you can do so, however a lot of zoos do not allow you to carry them in with you. Another option is to use a monopod to help support the weight of your camera while you hold it steady to shoot. I have taken my monopod into several zoos with no problem. What I do most of the time is to use what is at hand. You can lean against light poles and fence posts, you can rest your left elbow along the tops of fences or backs of benches, or if kneeling you can rest your elbow on your own knee. Keep your right hand firmly on your camera body and those fingers ready to operate the buttons you need and your left hand, with thumb pointed upwards and fingers making a cradle, under your lens to keep it steady. Keep you elbows close to your body and stand with a slightly wider stance to create a bit of a tripod with your own body. Stability is especially important with long reaching lenses as those lenses not only magnify your subject; they also magnify every little motion you might make and increase the amount of camera shake in your final image.
  3. Use a lens hood. You will be shooting outdoors with little control over the angles that you can shoot from and sometimes you will need to shoot into the sun or through glass. A lens hood will help cut back the glare and give you a cleaner looking image. Think of it like putting your hand above your eyes to shade your vision on a sunny day. Things look much clearer when you do that don't they?
  4. Get in close and fill the frame with your animal. By zooming in close you will crop out some of the fences, signs, other zoo visitors, and other distracting elements that will take away the impact of the animal and shout "this image was taken at the zoo!".
  5. Focus on the eyes of your subject. If the eyes are sharp you will create more of a connection between you and the animal and if the eyes are sharp you know the rest of the subject will be perfect too.
  6. Shooting through those glass windows is a great way to avoid the bars of the cages but it has challenges all of its own. If you think far enough ahead, like before you leave your house, bring along a small cloth like a kitchen tea towel. People might just think you are crazy but you might be able to wipe some of the smudges from the glass and give yourself a little less dirt to shoot through.  If not just find that spot on the glass that has less scratches, fewer nose prints and hand prints, and less dirt on the inside. Use your lens hood, or your hand if you  need to, to block light from your lens and help cut back the glare and reflections in the glass. Get your lens as close to the glass as you can to eliminate as many reflections as you can. Wear darker colored clothing too, it seems to create less distracting reflections on the glass than brighter and lighter colors do.
  7. The bars and wires of the cages get in the way and really make it hard to get a clear shot of those animals. But you wouldn't want to be that close to those wild beasties without that fence in-between you! So you have to make the best of it. Look for a wider opening in the bars if you can find one, get your lens as close to the fence as you can without breaking any rules or crossing any barriers, use longer focal lengths to get past the bars and bring the animal closer to you, and use a wider aperture to blur away the fence and make it disappear. Wait for the animal to move back away from the fence towards the back of his enclosure and shoot. If you get it just right you won't see that fence in your image at all. If you are using a point and shoot that does not allow you to control your aperture try portrait mode, portrait mode by default uses a wider aperture setting.
  8. Get to the zoo early. Most zoos feed the animals at opening time and that is when they are the most active. They are watching and listening for those zoo keepers to come around with their breakfast! The keepers may also be bringing a special treat or new enrichment item for them and this will keep them active for a quiet a while. If you get to the zoo later you might just miss the animals while they are active and have only the opportunity to grab images of them taking an afternoon nap.
  9. Wait. Wait for the animal to move into the area you want them in, wait for them to make a more interesting expression, wait for them to make eye contact with you, wait for that cloud to move over the sun and cut back on the glare, wait for the shot you want. Sometimes this is easier said than done, especially if you are with other people who might not want to spend the entire day camping out in front of the lion enclosure. But when you can do it. It will reward you with the image you are looking for.
  10. Don't carry more than you need it will be hard to keep track of everything especially if there are crowds of other visitors. You don't want that bag full of valuable gear, that you just sat down on the ground to free your hands to take a shot, to walk away as someone else helps themselves to it. You don't want to risk those expensive lenses tumbling out of your pocket and into an alligator pit. And you don't want to have to leave early just because things are getting to heavy to carry around.


kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) how to take photos at the zoo photography zoo zoo photography zoo photography tips https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/10/10-tips-for-zoo-photography Mon, 22 Oct 2018 17:33:53 GMT
Horses Pigs Kids And A Whole Lotta Splashes https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/9/horses-pigs-kids-and-a-whole-lotta-splashes Yes, this post is a little late or a little after the fact. Or I'm just a little slower these days.  

After all the Horses Pigs Kids and Splashes I am posting about are all summer stuffs from the county fair and such; and believe it or not school is well underway again. In fact the high school kids have had their first games already and the Little Dawgs will have their first game in a few days. Yep it's time for the boys of fall to hit the field. But that's not what we are looking at today!

I have been looking through images that I have taken over the last year. (and some from the year before too!) You see with the end of summer and the start of fall comes the KPPA Fall Expo and the first look at what's to come in the 2019 image competition. I've been looking at all these images to see what I might have to take to the Fall Expo for a review by our Kansas Master Photographers. (maybe not a many as I'd like!)

While looking at the images from the last year I've noticed a lot of a few things. I've noticed a lot of horses, pigs, kids, and splashes!

OK ok ok. So the pigs were really only a lot of pigs in just a couple of county fair shots. But aren't baby pigs just the cutest little things?!

And the kids? Well there's always kids around county fairs and such. What kids wouldn't want to be at the parade gathering up all that candy; or even riding on a float?!

And the splashing going on around here! I've captured images of kids playing in the fire hose, teens and adults playing in the mud at mud volleyball tournaments. and kids, teens, and adults all slipping and sliding in a slip 'n slide kickball tournament!


And those horses? Well it wouldn't be summertime without at least one rodeo!!

What's next around this little town?

FOOTBALL! Watch out here come the Little Dawgs!

kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/9/horses-pigs-kids-and-a-whole-lotta-splashes Sun, 02 Sep 2018 14:03:49 GMT
Little Pieces Of Ribbon https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/8/little-pieces-of-ribbon Another visit to the county fair and a few more little pieces of ribbon hang from the edge of the shelf.
Oh, those little pieces of ribbon really mean nothing at all.
It is just a little tiny county fair in a little tiny county with a little tiny amount of entries.
But it is still fun! 

"You don't want to make awards the reason you're doing things" -Nick Nolte

Those little pieces of ribbon really only mean one thing.
They mean you worked hard on something and you wanted to share it with someone else.

"Whatever you do will be insignificant, but it is very important that you do it." -Mahatma Gandhi

It is after all nice to be recognized for a job well done.
Those little pieces of ribbon are pretty too.
Red, White, Blue, Purple and shiny.

"Awards are lovely and always welcome." -Max Von Sydow 

And those little pieces of ribbon are encouraging.
They help you to improve.
To learn.
To grow.

"Awards can give you a tremendous amount of encouragement to keep getting better,
no matter how young or old you are." -Alan Alda

Yes, I kind of like those little pieces of ribbon up there on the shelf.
Proudly displayed right along side those shiny pieces of acrylic.

I never had a "trophy case" before I entered my first photography competition. 

It's kind of a fun thing to see all those little pieces of ribbon. 



Swan AbstractSwan AbstractEntered in the 2018 Osborne County Fair this image received a first premium blue ribbon. White Duck Swimming With His ReflectionWhite Duck Swimming With His ReflectionEntered in the 2018 Osborne County Fair this image received a Champion purple ribbon.


kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) awards county fair ribbons osborne county fair osborne kansas photography quotes quotes about awards https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/8/little-pieces-of-ribbon Thu, 02 Aug 2018 16:33:58 GMT
Do Something A Little Bit Different https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/7/do-something-a-little-bit-different Sometimes you just gotta do something a little bit different and that's what I did with these images.

No it's not something different with the post processing, it's the subject and environment that the subject is in that's different.

A while back we headed down the road a ways to the town of Great Bend, Kansas for a visit to their little zoo. I have been visiting the Brit Spaugh Zoo since I was a tiny little kid, I've taken my niece and nephew to this zoo when they were tiny little kids, and I've taken my own kids to this zoo when they were tiny little kids....

It's been great in recent years to see the improvements made there. I think they have a lot more work to do but what has been done so far has been pretty amazing. In fact it was one of these improvements that we were there to see on this trip. The new grizzly bear enclosure had opened up and I was looking forward to grabbing an image or two of the bears playing in their new pool right next to the nice big new viewing window.

Well that didn't happen.

We got there and went to the nice new viewing window only to discover that the bears were way on the other end of their enclosure having a nice long summery nap way up on top of their new jungle gym.


So no fun swimming bear pictures for me on this trip.

Which brings me to the do something a little bit different part of the day.

Among the exhibits at the Brit Spaugh Zoo is a small little building with the sign "Education Center" over the door. It's been there for years and houses a few snakes, a few frogs, a few lizards, a parrot, and a few fish aquariums. It was there is this dimly lit little building that I did my something a little bit different for the day.

Instead of focusing on the big cats (or in this case bears) that I usually focus on I turned my lens to something much smaller. Behind fingerprint smudged glass of the fish aquariums, darting around fast as they could under the "spot lights" from the aquarium tops, I found my subject for the day. 

Happy little colorful fish!

Brit Spaugh Zoo - June 24, 2018

Well there's a challenge I don't take on everyday. Do you know how fast those little things can swim?!

I think I'll have to try fishing with my camera again sometime. That was pretty fun.




kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) fish fish photography great bend kansas kkh photos photographers in osborne photography zoo photography https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/7/do-something-a-little-bit-different Sun, 22 Jul 2018 14:43:29 GMT
Independence Day Celebrations 2018 https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/7/independence-day-celebrations-2018 Whoo! 3 blog posts made since I moved over here from the old blog at WP. Well at least I can say I have accomplished something this summer! :D

In reality it has been a busy summer; I've been busy away from the camera with my crafty business getting ready for craft fairs and fixing up a few new creation, I've been busy away from the camera spending time with friends at our ladies crafty group, and I've been busy spending time with the kiddos and even doggy sitting for my grandpuppies! And - I've made a couple of trips out to Phillipsburg to The Gallery, where I still have a few images on display. They will be there until the 21st of July, but even if you don't make it while I have things out there don't hesitate to visit them, it is a nice little gallery with a big variety of art.

That doesn't sound like much but it really has been a busy summer.

And then there's the 4th of July...

Alton, Ks - July 8, 2018

Images in this gallery are for viewing only. If you or a loved one appear in these images and would like to order a print or download you can begin the process by creating a favorites list. Feel free to contact me via the link at the top of this page for more information.

I know that you all know that I love to spend time walking around the zoo and capturing images of the animals. But did you also know that one of my favorite things to shoot is fireworks? Things to shoot with the camera that is. Don't really care to actually light those bad boys up myself; I'll leave that to the professionals. But I do love a nice fireworks show and the little towns in Osborne County put on a good show or two every year.

On the 4th the hubby and I went to the show here in Osborne, Dixie pup even went along, they had a nice show again this year. It did seem like they could have spaced the bursts out just a little more but what do I know? I've never set up a show like that!

Osborne, Kansas - July 4th - 2018 - 1 second exposure - f/16 - ISO 160 - 58mm

Last night, July 8th, was the little town of Alton, Ks' Independence Day Celebration. Alton as you know from old posts over at the old blog is a little town with a big attitude. They have a hard working bunch of people that put on a couple of big events each year and this is the first time I've made it to this event. I doubt it will be the last. From a free supper sponsored by Co-Op to the fireworks show put on by the fire department and everything in-between it was a fun evening for everyone who attended.

Alton, Ks - July 8, 2018 - Images in this gallery are for viewing only. If you or a loved one appear in these images and would like to order a print or download you can begin the process by creating a favorites list. Feel free to contact me via the link at the top of this page for more information.

I had plans to venture out of the county for extra firework shows this year too but had to miss the show at Waconda lake this time; and even though I had planned to go I ended up missing the show at Wilson lake as well.

There's always next year when I'll be out there capturing the BOOM! once again.

19 sec - f/18 - ISO 160 - 45 mm - capturing multiple burst in one frame



kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) 4th of july alton kansas event photography firework photography fourth of july osborne photographers in osborne https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/7/independence-day-celebrations-2018 Tue, 10 Jul 2018 00:35:05 GMT
10 Tips To Help You Capture The BOOM! https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/7/10-tips-for-photographing-fireworks Woo Hoo! It's fireworks time again!!!

I love a good fireworks show, who doesn't. They are lots of fun to watch and.... they are even more fun to photograph. This image below was taken at a small town fireworks show. We were just sitting there minding our own business and then BOOOM!!!
They were bursting just barely above our heads. This is not a composite image... this is simply a single frame... one shot... click - boom - done!


Fireworks - Ellinwood, Kansas - July 4, 2015

About this time every year I post my favorite tips to help you get your best fireworks photos, to help you have more fun shooting them with a lens than with a lighter! It's safer too. I have never burned my finger shooting photos of fireworks but I have burned myself shooting the fireworks.

It's a little challenging, getting those amazing Fourth of July pictures, but it is so much fun and when you get that CLICK and that BOOM to sync up just right..... those Oooohs and Awwwws - will last a lifetime.

And so in keeping with tradition here we go with 10 Tips To Capturing The Boom.


  1. Give your lens a good cleaning before you head out. There will be enough smoke and dirt in the air; you don't need to start with it on your lens too.
  2. Pack extra batteries, a flashlight, a comfy folding chair or a nice big blanket, a cold drink or two, and plenty of insect repellent. Just don't spray that repellent around your gear and be sure to wash it off your hands before you start setting up your camera. We wouldn't want any greasy fingers on our gear now would we?
  3. If your camera has a long exposure noise reduction setting in the menu find it and use it!
  4. Set your ISO low. 100 or 200 works well for this job.
  5. Set your aperture somewhere around f/13 to f/18.
  6. Shoot with a wider lens like a 28mm. When you want to fill the frame try something like a  45mm. And if you really want to fill the frame with those bursts that are lighting up the night sky try something even longer like say maybe 105mm.
  7. Securely attach your camera to a steady tri-pod. The sturdier the camera - the sharper the image.
  8. Use a remote shutter release or a shutter release cable to avoid creating movement when you click that button.
  9. Switch your lens to manual focus and your focus at infinity. After all those falling sparks are usually pretty far away from your viewing location.
  10. Shoot in manual mode or better yet bulb mode with exposure times starting around 1/2 a second and taking as long as 6 seconds. The longer exposure times creating more streaking with the falling colorful embers.

Bonus tip... Experiment with longer exposure times by using something like a dark baseball cap to cover the end of your lens between bursts while the shutter remains open. Be very careful not to bump your camera while you to this! With practice you can capture several separate bursts within one single frame.

Fireworks - 2017 - Osborne, Ks

Have a happy and safe 4th!

kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) fireworks fourth of july kkh photos photography tips https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/7/10-tips-for-photographing-fireworks Mon, 02 Jul 2018 16:25:11 GMT
The Gallery https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/6/the-gallery KKH Photos at The Gallery - Canvas & Cabernet KKH Photos at The Gallery - Canvas & Cabernet KKH Photos at The Gallery - Canvas & Cabernet

What a summer!

I have done something new for KKH Photos. I have taken a few prints to a gallery!

Hey; a friend said I should and sometimes friends have the best ideas.

Yes; it is a small gallery but boy is it nice!

The Gallery - Canvas & Cabernet in Phillipsburg, Kansas is currently showing some of my work.

You can see a sample of how they are displayed in the cell phone snaps above. Those print wraps are hanging in an awesome cluster right from the ceiling! It looks so cool.

I am not the only one with art on display at The Gallery; you can see paintings, drawings, metal sculptures, pottery... and it's always changing!

If you find yourself in the Phillipsburg area take a little time for a side trip and visit this little bit of art right here in our little corner of the world.

You won't be disappointed.

I Am King - [Revised]I Am King - [Revised]

kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) art art gallery KKH Photos north western kansas phillipsburg kansas photography https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/6/the-gallery Sat, 23 Jun 2018 23:07:08 GMT
Back Up Those Moving Trucks And Warm Up The Coffee https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/6/back-up-those-moving-trucks-and-warm-up-the-coffee Isolated Coffee MugIsolated Coffee MugA blue cup filled with hot black coffee isolated on a white background. Beep! Beep!

The moving trucks are backing up into a new home for the KKH Photos blog.

It was a short trip and an easy move and now it's time to grab that cup of coffee, sit back, and...


The old blog over at WP was looking a bit outdated and run down, it was getting dusty, and the cobwebs were forming in every corner.

It was past time for a change.

So here it is in a fresh new home; the moving trucks are gone, the coffee is hot, and the keyboard is waiting.

What have I been up to now......


kkhphotos@rocketmail.com (KKH Photos) https://www.kkhphotos.com/blog/2018/6/back-up-those-moving-trucks-and-warm-up-the-coffee Sat, 23 Jun 2018 22:15:03 GMT