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Having moved away from the Triangle two and a half years ago, we weren’t able to make it back for SPARKcon the past couple of years. It was quite nice to be able to get out of dodge this weekend, visit with best friends, and hang out at SPARKcon again.

Sarah and I decided to participate in the artSPARK street painting activities again and do a “Birthday Totoro” to celebrate her birthday. You can check out the progression of our chalk square below.

Below are some additional images from the festival featuring more of the street painting squares, live music, circusSPARK, and more!


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MAGFest 13 + Photos!

So MAGFest 13 was awesome. Not that it needed to be said because MAGFest is always awesome.

It has been really cool seeing this festival grow so much. I wish I could have been there from the very beginning, however my first MAGFest was MAG9 and I promised myself I wouldn’t miss one after that. That year it was at roughly 3,000 attendees, this year 17,000… craziness.

This year was spectacular, and I think I was actually able to catch more bands than I ever have in a single MAGFest weekend (see pics below or view FLICKR album). There are so many awesome things to do at MAGFest, but the music is where it’s at for me. Some of the highlights being bands that are fairly new to me like Kirby’s Dream Band, Super Soul Bros, and Do A Barrel Roll. Others being the always awesome likes of Descendants of Erdrick, D&D Sluggers, Bit Brigade, Danimal, Powerglove, The Protomen, The Megas, Triforce Quartet, etc. I still think my overall favorite performances were (just like last year) Lonely Rolling Stars and Viking Guitar.

I somehow also found time for gaming and spent it at the Indie Game Showcase and playing some classics like Bad Dudes 2-player with the wifeypon™. Some notable indie games we played were: Pixel Noir, Vidar, Vagante, and Guns of Icarus Online.

The single best moment of MAGFest had to have been being up front for the transition between The Protomen and Danimal Cannon. All of the performers were on stage and then the crowd was split for Danimal and Kilroy to go all the way across the Potomac Ballroom to the other stage for Danimal’s set to begin. It was totally rad to follow that!

All in all, this elongated weekend consisting of fun times and very little sleep will probably be the highlight of my 2015. Loved seeing so many friendly faces and getting to hang out with my RPGFan.com crowd & the amazing Mediatron Staff!

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Peace, Love, Beer, and Espresso!

I spent my Saturday visiting Mother Earth Brewing in Kinston, NC where they had their 3rd annual Silent Night release party. It was great to be able to sample the rich, savory 2012 Silent Night in addition to the 2010 and 2011 blends. Beer was not the only tasty beverage present at the release party, Matt Souza of Counter Culture Coffee was there providing yummy caffeinated drinks all day. Also, Mother Earth was providing brewery tours every hour, so I got to check out their amazing facility.

Great beer, great espresso, great friends, great times. Check out some photos from the event below, and if you haven’t tried any of Mother Earth’s brews you should do so 🙂

Projects like this keep me sane, I created this video with some clips I captured while just having fun at the event. The motion graphics were all made in After Effects.

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Photo Shoot: River Whyless

I had the awesome opportunity to do a photo shoot with a band this past weekend! River Whyless is a collection of down-to-earth, talented musicians based out of Asheville, NC. Do yourself a favor and get their album on Bandcamp, you will not be disappointed. Also, check their tour schedule because you do not want to miss them if they are playing near your city.  Continue reading

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There are many challenges that can be presented to you while shooting in various areas and times of the day. Shooting outside in direct sunlight is an issue that can be dealt with in several different ways, however we are going to discuss the use of using filters to get better quality images rather than just adjusting the shutter speed or aperture of the camera.

Polarizing Filters
A polarizing filter can work wonders if you are shooting in harsh sunlight. It will polarize the light before entering the camera, enabling the camera to see right through harsh light and reflections, and deepen blue and green colors. As you can see in the image below, polarizing filters can help generate high quality images if used correctly. With a circular polarizer, you can control the strength of the polarizing filter.


Neutral Density Filters

An ND (or Neutral Density) filter is great for harsh lighting conditions. Essentially, an ND filter dumbs down all wavelengths of light (neutralizing them), allowing you to have the aperture open wider for a shallow depth of field while not having a completely overexposed image. Sometimes neutral density filters are used to aid in using slow shutter speeds in harsh lighting conditions to get a motion blur effect.

Neutral Density Filter
Photo By: Robert Emperley from Strasbourg, Alsace, France

As a treat, check out Devin Graham’s work on YouTube. He uses polarizing filters on DSLRs and is able to produce top notch films.

Devin Graham’s YouTube Channel
Devin Graham’s Blog