The New Manual DSLR Project

Hi, and welcome to my blog. The Manual DSLR Project was started March 30, 2010 with the intent of devoting one year to learning how to use my Nikon D300 in manual mode. I invited you to join me as I took this journey. You celebrated with me as my fingers began to remember which wheel adjusts the shutter speed and which controls the aperture settings. I was brutally honest in sharing my mistakes.

A year passed quickly...and I achieved my goal of demystifying the manual operation of my camera.

While the Manual DSLR Project was intended to be bound by time (one year), I am eager to keep the conversation going. So look for additional posts on anything related to photography. And interact. Let me know if you are reading the blog and find it useful.

All the best...

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Taking Care of Business

I've been tied up with a couple of other projects lately so the frequency in which I have posted has suffered. So here is a quick post to let you know what I've been up to. 

This is a barn that belongs to my sister and her husband.
First, it is tax time and I have been going through the torture of working on my tax return. I will start by saying that this is THE LAST time I will do my own taxes. I have hired a CPA who understands my type of business and who will take care of my business and personal tax returns for what I believe to be a very fair price--the preservation of my sanity. I started preparing my own tax returns several years ago when my tax professional retired due to health reasons. At the time our business was relatively simple and she encouraged me to do it myself. There comes a time, however, when things get so complicated that completing your own tax return is somewhat akin to performing your own appendectomy. Now I'm pretty good at carving the Thanksgiving turkey, but there are some things that amateurs shouldn't do.

Speaking of that a co-worker yesterday asked me if I would be interested in shooting a wedding for her. Again, there are some things that amateurs should not do!

Finally, I am working on a sample chapter of a new book. I can't release details at this point, but I'm excited about the possibilities.

With only 22 days left in the 365-day Manual DSLR Project, I am also thinking about deciding what my next step will be. I'm leaning toward devoting a year focusing on lighting techniques, but am not absolutely sure yet.

I am excited that late next week I'll be taking my wife on a surprise trip. You should understand that I am terrible at surprises. My kids were so good at convincing me to let them open Christmas gifts early that we just started "having Christmas" on December 23. But I have kept this one a secret. Not many people know the secret destination and fewer know the itinerary, so I believe that she will be genuinely surprised. It's funny. I could list the itinerary here and she'd never know. It's not like she ever reads my blog!

Anyway, look for Twitter messages and photos to start next Thursday. I am looking forward to a much-needed break and a break from our schizophrenic weather. Not to mention some quality time with my sweet wife.

Until next time...Mike

PS. Don't forget to check out my weekly posts at I also recently posted an article at Amateur Photographer Magazine.

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