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On Location with CPA

Our journey with Paul's Photo & CPA started on the Death Valley Adventure in the early 2000's. We had lived in California, but had never been to Death Valley. It sounded like a great opportunity on many levels and far exceeded my lovely wife Betty and my expectations... as have subsequent CPA Adventures to Las Vegas, Carmel, Monument Valley, Canyon de Chelly and New Orleans. (Some multiple times.)

There are numerous blessings accruing from Paul's Photo & CPA Adventures. "Test driving" cameras and lenses of interest. Image reviews to sharpen one's vision. Excellent coaching to sharpen one's technique. Exposure to practices and approaches used by accomplished class-mates. Shoot with Mark one time and he knows how you like to shoot, your idiosyncrasies and how you might improve.

One benefit of Mark knowing how you shoot...On several occasions, when I've wanted to purchase new gear, Mark has said ... "David, I could sell you that, but X will meet your needs better". The option Mark then recommends is always in my best interest and often not his.

The current love of my photographic life is the Nikon D850 with battery pack supported with a lens array ranging from 8mm to 600mm. The D850 simply performs no matter my demands. I love the way it feels in my hand with the battery pack; very reminiscent of my earlier loves, the Leica R9 with motor drive and the Nikon D4.

When photographing birds in the field, though, the Nikon D850 goes in the bag and out comes the Nikon D500. The D500 coupled with the amazing Nikon 500mm PF lens is a remarkable combination and relatively so light. Walking in the field all day seeking birds? With a shoulder strap, no problem.

Creativity? The "head-of-class" driver for me is the 8mm Fisheye. Full circle Fisheye. Then ... if I need perspective beyond that provided by the Fisheye Nikkor 8-15mm f/3.5-4.5, the Nikkor 14-24 f/2.8 meets the challenge. (Think trying to photograph large numbers of celebrants in a confined restaurant space.)

Satisfactions. One of the most rewarding consequences of this journey has been becoming a photographer for Austin TX based Texas Folklife, a non-profit nurturing state-wide the art forms of Texas. This has led to work being published in Texas Music Magazine, the Houston Chronicle, the Dallas Morning News, other Texas newspapers and one image being used by the National Endowment for the Arts in celebrating Conjunto artist Eva Ybarra's naming as a National Heritage Fellow. Then, there is the occasional gallery sale.