Ocean City Calendar of Sunrises, Sunsets and Waves

My “Ocean City Sunrise, Sunset and Surf Calendar” is now available for sale at Zazzle in three sizes (I like the medium). Zazzle usually offers a “discount code” at the top of each page. CLICK this link to order:
http://www.zazzle.com/ocean_city_sunrise_sunset_and_surf_calendar-158449428461024650?rf=238675969062853179

Here is the Facebook header with mini-images for each month.

Ocean City Calendar

This calendar is available in three sizes (I like the medium the best) and you can even change the way the dates pages look. The medium size “Sunrise, Sunset & Surf Ocean City Calendar” is spiral bound and measures 11″ wide by 17″ high when open.

I use Zazzle for print-on-demand fulfillment. They produce a quality product and offer a money-back satisfaction guarantee. They also (from time to time) offer a “Free Shipping for a Year” program. In addition, as long as I’ve been using their website, Zazzle nearly always has a discount code at the top of each page. The discount is usually in the 15% to 20% range. That make these calendars a pretty good deal – if you like Ocean City or if you like sunset, sunset and waves photographs.

Are Art Photographers Not Real Artists?

Art Photographers Are Artists. Period.

A recent discussion over at an “art forum” had one self-centered (painting or drawing) artist complain that “Contests with art and photography are kind of feeble on the art side.” He goes on to explain it this way:

Hey, Alice, great painting. How long did it take?
“Thanks Mary, I worked ’til the wee hours every night all last week.”
“Wow, that’s a lot of work – you certainly deserve this honorable mention.”
“And here’s our winner, Bill. Kudos for the great picture of the sun setting over the canal. How long did that take?”
Bill replies, “About 1/125th of a second.”

Don’t ya just love that attitude toward photographers?

I get tired of some artists making comparisons like that. Here is my response to that self-centered complainer:

Actually one of my best selling photographs was captured in less than that 1/125th of a second. But that is only one tiny moment of the hours and hours needed to “get it right.” My best selling series (of the Indian River Inlet Bridge) has me being there on several dozen different occasions – in all kinds of weather (well, mostly good weather but in temperatures from below freezing to nearly 100 degrees (F). Oh, yeah, I’ve been “on location” from before sunrise to nearly midnight. And I have made, literally, thousands of exposures – which need sorting, culling and processing/editing down to the select few that exhibit what I saw when I made that short camera click. Yeah, maybe it would be nice to stay home, even if up ’til 2:00 AM, in my air conditioned home.

Indian River Inlet Bridge at Twilight

In summary: I sell photographs of places (landscapes/seascapes) that are photographed a gazillion times every year. But for some reason there are people who spend several hundred dollars on some of my pieces for images of the same “subject” that an iPhone captures for free. Maybe there is a reason. 🙂

PLEASE feel free to add your point of view in a comment below. 

A Sinister Butterfly?

Well, it could be, if you are so predisposed – or if you don’t like bugs of any sort. When I shared my latest butterfly image on Facebook, a good friend, Cheryl, complimented the photograph but mentioned that this butterfly looked sinister.  I titled the piece “Butterfly Victory” because of the v-shape made by the wings. But the little beast does have a sinister-looking face.

Victory Butterfly Art Photograph

Actually, it is the life cycle of a butterfly, such as this Eastern Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly, that may be sinister. These insects are born as tiny worms – caterpillars, really (there is a difference). They spend most of their life eating everything in sight – your flowers, your vegetables, trees, you name it. If it looks like insect salad, it’s gone. When they’ve eaten their fill for a few weeks they take a siesta for a week or so and wrap themselves up in a blanket called a cocoon. Inside, during the siesta all of that food gorging makes the caterpillar begin changing into a chrysalis, of butterfly pupa. Even though Dr. Frankenstein has no part in this, it’s body is changing! When the nap is over and the metamorphism has completed, it’s time for “sleeping beauty” to awaken and crawl out from under the covers. The beautiful butterfly that emerges from the long sleep is a promiscuous sort – it will mate (have butterfly sex), lay eggs and die. All that happens, depending on the particular species in a few days or a few weeks. Most adult butterflies, sadly, live two weeks or less.

Caterpillar Camouflage

Then the cycle repeats. But we, as humans, do get to see the beauty in the adult and in some of the caterpillars…as long as they don’t eat our gardens, that is.

Note: the Eastern Swallowtail Butterfly in the first photograph was found “dining” at the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore.

See more of my photography at Bill Swartwout Photography.