Almost broke my LG Dare

This morning, I accidentally dropped my LG Dare cell phone from about five feet high. It seemed to work fine.

Later that afternoon, I tried to take a photo. “Camera start error.” What?!

Fortunately, a search at HowardForums brought me to this thread. Applying pressure around the lens area fixed the problem. (I didn’t hear any snaps or pops, but I’ll take it.)

Confirm mail delivery on the cheap

Last week, I worked on getting my college transcripts sent to a couple four-year universities[1. Cal Poly Pomona and Cal State LA.].

  • Pasadena City College (PCC) was the easiest. They offer TranscriptsPlus.
  • Bakersfield College was a little more difficult. They also used TranscriptsPlus, but made me fax my signature before they would proceed.
  • Citrus College and Cal Poly Pomona[2. I was there my first year of college before I went Citrus College.] were the worst. They make you print a PDF form, fill it out by hand, then send it to their office by mail[3. I could have faxed my document to Citrus, but I didn’t want to write my credit card information. I’d rather send a check.]. Why can’t they get with it?

Rather than drive to each college to deliver my transcripts by hand, I opted for mail. I’d save on fuel/time, take one day to get there, and I’d be well ahead of my deadline.

That brings me to my mom. Whenever she sent a letter through USPS and wanted to know when it arrived, she added Return Receipt ($2.30 as of this writing) along with the required Certified Mail.

But, if she didn’t need a signature, she wasted money for that extra service.

When you use Certified Mail, you receive a receipt stamped with the date of mailing. A unique article number allows you to verify delivery online.

If you don’t need that signature, mail your letter First Class with Certified Mail.

P.S. Save your comments if you’re going to say “duh.”

I love Uni-ball 207 pens

I bought a few Uni-ball Signo 207 pens earlier last year. They’ve been through a hectic year (2009) of school, and they still write incredibly smooth (for the price).

Lately, I’ve been trying to write ideas on index cards for future blog posts. Oh no, the two pens I have left are almost out of ink! Fortunately, they’re refillable. I just bought a pack at my local stationary store. It feels good not adding more cheap pens to a landfill.

Oh, and if I ever write checks, I know they can’t be washed.

Tip: Medium and micro refills are interchangable. I prefer micro.

Percolating in my head

It’s tough not having the same dedication to photography as 2008. After a hectic year (2009) split between college, work, photography, and the band, can you blame me?

I’m going to share what’s happening, then you can heckle me.

The Scarlet Paradigm

We’re trying to “make it.” Not only are we trying to just book more shows[1. In 2009, we played 14 shows — January (2), February (2), March (2), May (1), June (2), July (1), August (2), October (1), November (1).], but we’re looking to sell merchandise at shows and send our EP to various record labels.

I’d like to design a better theme for the website and get the guys to post to our Twitter/website more often — not just for announcements/shows.

Website geekery

I can dabble and tinker with HTML and CSS, but not very well. Since the band can’t afford to pay a designer, I need to take matters into my own hands. I’m determined to learn these languages, in addition to PHP. It’d also give me something else to add to my résumé.

I’m anxiously waiting for Aaron Brazell to finish the WordPress Bible.

Do you have any websites, articles or books that helped you get started?


I’ve maxed out the number of units I can transfer to a Cal State university. I’ve applied to Cal State LA and Cal Poly Pomona for Fall 2010 and waiting to hear back from them. Until then, I can’t do anything more about it.


I need to scan and process all my film negatives from Fall 2009 semester at Citrus College, catch up on general photo processing, and create a dedicated portfolio website of my best work. While it would be cool to try and get more photography work, I need to throttle that back and push The Scarlet Paradigm.

Don’t worry, I’m still down to photowalk and try to hang with the Los Angeles Flickr Group whenever I can.

Alright, that’s what up. Follow me on Twitter. Questions? Comments? Suggestions?

Flickr's People in Photos

I’m glad Flickr finally released People in Photos. It’s a feature that Facebook and Myspace had for a while.

Tip: If you write generous keywords on all of your photos, especially of people, you can label people in bulk.

  1. Head to Flickr Organize.
  2. Click more options and search for the person by tags only.
  3. Select all.
  4. Drag up to the batch area.
  5. Click Add People near the top[1. Fourth item from the left.].

I figured this out after going through my 100th page. Better late than never.

My friends notice the lull

Last night, several friends expressed that they were sad (or frustrated) that I wasn’t posting photos like my days of yore. One of them said they were scared because they don’t see most of the photos I take. They might’ve been half joking, but I think there was a hint of seriousness in their jokes.

I tried to explain that I shifted gears. Quality over quantity. Of course, they wouldn’t have any of that.

Read “Rethinking my photography” and “Slacking off or more focused?” in other browser tabs, then come back here. I’ll wait.

Seriously, that’s the truth. Priorities have temporarily shifted because of school. Would you carry a DSLR camera and lenses when you have college textbooks to read through and homework?

When the motivation strikes me, I go into Lightroom and look for photos I overlooked the first time around. But, after work or a long lecture at school, I don’t want to do anything. I’m usually camped in Google Reader catching up with feeds, or going through email. Those are my low energy tasks. But, when I have free time at home, I should be processing photos since I can’t do that anywhere else.

I need to schedule chunks of time or adopt the procrastination hack. (It definitely works.)

Other than sporadic paid gigs, that’s not happening right now.

On some level, that might be the wrong mentality. Can you blame me?

In conclusion, sorry, and I’m trying my best. 🙂

Slacking off or more focused?

Social lube

After my previous show on Sunday, I was talking with Arnold talked about how sad it was not being able to hang out and photowalk as much as before. In contrast, the Los Angeles [Flickr] group have constant meet-ups. You can never be bored when you hang out with them!

Perhaps this is my mellow and slightly more focused approach.

In 2008, I posted about 2,300 photos to Flickr. So far this year, I’ve posted 437 photos to Flickr.

On the other hand, 2009 has mainly consisted of work, school, and music. I didn’t go to Las Vegas yet[1. I went to Las Vegas twice last summer.], nor did I visit my cousins in Hawaii.

Wait. I photographed a protest, went on a few protests of my own. C’mon!

Arnold would scold me for not undertaking another year of 365. But, I’d like to justify that I’m looking for quality over quantity. Some photos in that 2008 set were forced. In contrast, I’m very happy with the majority of photos posted from this year.

Plus, I’ve photographed more concerts, and I’m aiming to photograph two weddings in a couple months.

Whatever. I do what I want!

The Pearls Before Swine blog

Are you subscribed to the Pearls Before Swine blog by Stephan Pastis? Do it. Now.

A recent favorite post: “I Will Save The World.”

If you love his comic, his blog is…gravy to a turkey. A1 Steak Sauce to a steak. Ice cream to a chocolate chip cookie. A Drobo (with eSATA support) for a photographer. Wait, something doesn’t belong. My bad.

Anyway, you’re welcome.

Bill will record one song for you, pro bono

Bill — friend and guitarist of our band, The Scarlet Paradigm — wants to improve his recording skills. He sent this status update on Facebook a few days ago:

If you or your friends are musicians, spread the word that I will record one of their songs for [free]!

How good can it sound? Listen to some of our songs on Myspace.

Interested? Email him — bill [at]