Those Who Eventually Find The Magic


DSLRguide has been one of my favorite channels since I started messing around in YouTube. Back to front, you can really see the progression of his work as he’s continued to put content out there. He shoots a lot of his material with an entry level Canon T3i, and still comes away with some beautifully constructed and graded videos.

It’s not just the visual element I’m into, though. Most of his videos take an almost blog-like format, not a vlog as people know vlogs to be today, but more of an essay-like style, where he starts with an idea and tailors the entire video to explain it. The material ranges anywhere from How To Edit Videos (for Beginners) to not as simple as ‘follow your dreams’, and the variance is great – it means that I can keep coming back to this channel whether I want to pick up some new tricks or not. But he posted a great video recently on the struggle of inspiration and how artists constructively use discontentment to reach the gem in the rough. I’ve gone ahead and shared it above so you guys can give it a watch yourself if you like.

I feel as though artists and people living and working in creative circles definitely do have this funny relationship with discontentment. I think it’s important to step back from your work once in a while, take a look at what you’ve finished, and be happy with what you created. This end product – this poem, this video, this picture, this story – that’s you, condensed into a form outside yourself, rife with the emotion you carried through the process of creating, and here for posterity now. You made this. Be proud. But at the same time, that voice inside that demands that we express ourselves somehow almost necessitates that we not stay too long in that state of contentment – that we need to get out there and start making our next big thing. That we tear down our monuments and build something finer. That we shred stories because we can do it better this time.

It’s this beautiful vicious circle that leads you to better things if you choose to ride those waves instead of getting washed along with the tide.

So yeah. Do it.

Those Who Eventually Find The Magic


It’s been exactly a week since I hiked the Stairway to Heaven in Vernon, NJ. I’ve got a mess of footage backlogged on my computer, and I’m still not completely sure what kind of video I want to come out of it.

On the other hand, it’s been about a month since the FOMO video came out.

I keep going back to the process of making that video in my head. It was this structured (though completely chaotic) process that saw me with a script in my hand, a rough shot sheet laid out, and a somewhat cohesive end product when all was said and done. Before that point, my actual method for shooting a video was just to have a camera on me while I was doing fun things – the video would show itself as long as I had enough footage.

And I feel like I shot lots on top of that mountain in Vernon. The clips I’m trying to string together definitely feel the way I felt while I was up there, if that makes any sense at all. But I guess I sort of miss the clear direction that working on FOMO had me create.

I feel as though I’ve got to keep the quality of the content I produce for the channel moving constantly up, all while juggling this drive I’ve got to just put stuff out there – to have something to show for all this time I’ve got on my hands now.

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Whaaaaat? Those of you who’ve been reading my blog for a while might remember the old AudioCoffee series I used to do on here. Well, I decided to flex the old creative muscles again and try and put that concept into video form – you can check out what I came away with in the embedded video above, or check out that and more on the Fernway Films Youtube Channel. We’re looking to get more frequent and really start growing in the community, and we’re counting on you guys to help us out. Give us a look, toss us a like, tell us what you think, share the video with people who might like it, and if you really really like what we do, maybe hit that subscribe button for us. We’d really appreciate it. 🙂

The transcribed poem is going to be in the description of the actual YouTube video, but as per tradition, I’ll go ahead and post it below, too:


I don’t get stuck – I just think a lot.
I’m my head, I’m
constantly seeing the
world with this
sepia tint.
Not enough to
make the memories feel
ancient –
but enough to make them feel
And it doesn’t matter if it ends up
being warmer
than it actually is.
I just don’t like having to
clench my fists when I remember.
As if the world doesn’t have enough
of that.


Spring and Winter Are a Day Apart


It was a bit of a weird stretch last week – the weather got flat out wonky on us out of nowhere, and we ended up getting a downright decent, warm spring day sitting right next to school cancellations and a few inches of snow.

So I figured I’d make a video out of it.

It was fun, actually – ended up sticking a little closer to home with the places I chose to shoot. Back when I was first starting out, I had this weird idea in my head that if I went someplace a little more grandiose – a city, or some place maybe more visually interesting than a quiet little suburb stopover in New Jersey – my shots wouldn’t be able to do the place justice. I think it’s a bit of a silly way to look at photography now, but it’s what kept me wandering around my hometown when I was still figuring out my camera – shooting almost exclusively in patches of woods by the roadside, old rail lines, scenic local ponds…

…it’s a vibe I feel like I got back to a little bit with this little edit…vlog….thing. But less because I’m skeevy about shooting in busier spots, and more because I like capturing the little bits of charm that shine through the cracks in this little town – bits that sometimes, you don’t even need to take a car too.

Anyways, here’s the latest upload on the Fernway Films Youtube channel. Hope you like it. 🙂

Spring and Winter Are a Day Apart



I don’t have a photo for this. I don’t think there’s one in my library or my queue, or buried somewhere in my phone storage that could properly do this justice.

Over the weekend, a particular article on my Flipboard caught my attention – a piece titled something to the effect of “Popular Instagram Photographer Dies In Subway Stunt Gone Wrong”. Something like that. Of course, I clicked the link and ended up giving the story a quick read.

The Instagrammer’s name was Christopher Serrano – known to most of his fans and followers as Heavy_Minds. The username sounded familiar for some reason, so I opened up my Instagram app and found out that I was actually already following him.

And then I opened his page, and realized just how terrible I was with names.

The guy was one of the first people I followed, back when I had just decided to change my Instagram from a private to a public account. He was part of that initial wave of gimme follows – the stream of likes and follows you send out on your Explore page to get your feelers out there, and maybe get a few follows back out of it. But the images that kept popping up on my feed since then were distinct – daring. I never really spent too much time on the page itself, but I’d always linger for a little bit longer over these insane shots that just had to involve hands and limbs dangling off buildings – these absolutely breathtaking views of a camera hanging obscenely high, looking down on different parts of the New York skyline. It was something completely just not in my vein of photography. I take shots of people, nature, abandoned places – never would I find myself scaling buildings that are giants to the flecks of dust going about their business in the urban sprawl below. The pulse – the excitement was palpable, even through the tiny screen I held in my hand.

The realization that the person behind those photos is gone gave me a bit of pause, sitting there in an Edison pizzeria, otherwise having an okay day.

I know right away what my father would tell me about the matter. 25 years is a life cut short by any measure of the imagination, but my old man has always been a big believer in your passions measuring the richness of your life. If this photographer spent his time chasing what he loved, the circumstances of death just don’t matter. The life was one well-lived, and should be celebrated without a doubt.

Other people in my life would argue differently – that passions are important, but so is your place in the living world. That with people connected and counting on and loving you, you can’t afford to just throw caution to the wind in the pursuit of what you want. You can chase your passions, but to a certain limit.

As for me, I don’t know what to think. Yes, life is important, but one small twitch on your thread, and it’s over, just like that. One small slip in the world, and everything can change – for you, for the people connected to you, for people you may not even have met yet. Why not spend your time taking the world by the shoulders and taking everything you want out of it while you can?

But the fear, and the weight, and the connections, and the links are still there. We don’t have nothing to lose, and that will always be on the table. How do you just let go and live like that?

Can anyone step out of their body at 25 years, look back, and say “This was worth it all?”.

The most any of us can do is live to the best we can. Take the moments – take what we can – and keep them close. Close as memory. I want to believe that the key to life is conquering the moment – not letting yourself be drawn into the sway – swept along in the tide.

Of course, that’s always been easy to say.

Stay strong. And to all those mourning Serrano’s death or celebrating his life, my thoughts are out there with you too.