Your chance to showcase your artworks: Calls for Art

In this blog, I’ve chronicled my artistic and emotional journey, as I take the hurts and pains and loneliness of my life and turn it into Dream Windows and award-winning photographs.

In today’s blog, I want to change the perspective, so to speak.  Instead of my telling you where I’m going with my artworks…

I want to share some upcoming exhibits for you to consider sharing YOUR artworks.

Thacher Park Nature Show

The Thacher Nature Center is looking for artists interested in participating in the  12th Annual Nature Art Exhibit,  on display  at the Emma Treadwell Thacher Nature Center  from Saturday, March 5 through Friday, March 25, 2016.   The opening reception will be Saturday, March 5, 1 – 4 pm.

The exhibit showcases artwork with the theme of nature.  Artists may submit up to 3 pieces of artwork for consideration by a jury.  Artwork in any medium will be considered.  All submissions must be nature inspired or created using natural material.   Please note:  we will do our best to choose 3 pieces for hanging, but may need to limit number of pieces due to spatial considerations.

The hanging fee for the exhibit is $15 per artist.

Opening reception for the exhibit is March 5, 2016,  1 – 4 pm.

In conjunction with the art show, the Nature Center is looking for artists who are interested in teaching classes during the duration of the exhibit.  At present, the dates available are March 6, March 12, March 13 and March 20.

For more information, please contact director Joy Scism at this e-mail link.

Times Union Home Expo Art Show

Are you an artist who transforms old into new? This year, Albany Center Gallery and Times Union Home Expo come together to support local artists and bring their recognized artwork into the home. ACG is looking for inventive artists who breathe “new life” to various re-used, recycled, and re-claimed materials at the Times Union Home Expo.

We are NOW accepting email submissions of up to 3 pieces until February 2 at 5pm.  If accepted, artists will receive a confirmation email on Saturday, February 6.

*Email images to with subject “TU art submission”. Email must include your name, title, size, date created, material of your work, and value for each submission.  Please save your image as “lastname_firstname_title_size”

*All media welcome to submit, within 36”x36”. No size restrictions for sculptures.

*Artists are responsible for drop-off and pick-up at the TU Center. There will be a $15 fee for non ACG Members if work is accepted.  [ACG members will not pay an entry fee]

Note: NOT all submissions will be accepted.

*ACG only accepts submissions from artists within 100 miles of Albany in support of its mission.

Times Union Center Home Expo Event Dates: Friday, February 19 – Sunday, February 21

So why am I offering these calls for art to you?

Simple.  These are great opportunities for you – not just photographers, but also painters, sculptors, craftspeople, those with the creative mind and the ability to transform their imagination into reality – to get your work seen and loved and maybe even bought.

I’ve participated in both the Thacher Park  Nature Show and the Times Union Home Expo in the past, and I’m looking forward to participating in those same projects in the future.

That being said, last year I was very pleased and humbled to see that several of my blog readers submitted their photos at the Altamont Fair photography competition, with those readers winning well-deserved ribbons for their efforts.  And if I can encourage you to submit to Altamont…

Then let’s all take the next step together.

This we can do.

And let’s all do it.  ‘Kay?


Trivia Bowl XI … and the teams are…

Wow.  It seems like only a year ago that Stern Fans won their second Trivia Bowl, and did so in quintessentially Stern Fans-ish manner – by betting a few points and watching as every other team got the answer wrong.  That put their name on the coveted trophy.
Now it’s 2015, and the eleventh meeting of the Capital District’s top trivia teams will take place this Saturday at 1pm at Wolf’s 1-11 on Wolf Road in Colonie.  The event is invitation-only, you have to be either a previous Trivia Bowl winner, a champion at your local pub or tavern or restaurant, or receive an “at-large” bid.
So who’s in Trivia Bowl this year?
Well, there’s the returning champions:
  • Stern Fans (champions of Trivia Bowl IV, X, current champions)
  • Street Academy (champions of Trivia Bowl III, VI)
  • Lynch’s Mob (champions of Trivia Bowl I, II)
  • The Load (champions of Trivia Bowl V)
  • Team Gretchen (champions of Trivia Bowl VIII)
  • The Tangy Tip (champions of Trivia Bowl IX, previously known as Manti’s Phone Bill)
And the other teams that have earned an at-large bid, or who have garnered an opportunity by winning a local tournament – those teams, along with the bars and restaurants that they represent:
  • The Summit (Graney’s)
  • Cromartie’s Kids (Stout)
  • Dan 2000X (Stout)
  • Woo-Hoo A Go-Go  (Elbo Room)
  • The Fist (Elbo Room)
  • Red-Headed Step Kids (Lager House/Side Door Cafe)
  • Blue Dudes Riding On 106 (Recovery Troy)
  • Spaceship (The Lionheart)
  • Tickle Me Sandusky
  • Motley Crue (Recovery Amsterdam)
  • What’s The Letter After “P”  (Gaffneys)
  • Miguel Hunt (Recovery Malta)
  • Mookie Blaylock  (Recovery Malta)
  • Your Mom (Recovery Malta)
  • Sparkling Wiggles (Stout)
  • The Skidmarks (McGearys)
  • Tap This (Jessica Stones)
  • District 5 Ducks  (My Place & Co)
  • Team 3  (Jessica Stones)
  • My Wife The Tramp  (Pinhead Susans)
  • Tarnished Silver (Pinhead Susans)
  • Origami Swans  (Side Door Café)
  • Skyhawk (Recovery Albany)
  • Ketcham (Martel’s)
  • Threat Level Midnight (Martel’s)
  • A Few Cards Short Of A Deck (Brown’s)
  • Lumber Jack Fantasies (Finnbars)
  • Blues Brothers (McGearys)
  • The Bonanza (Finnbars)
  • Send It In Jerome (McGearys)
  • A Circle Of Jerks (Juniors/Graneys)
  • Can’t Get Right (Recovery Troy)

So with that in mind… Wolf’s 1-11 should be packed with over three dozen trivia teams.

And by later Saturday afternoon… one of them will get the opportunity to hoist the Silver Bowl and claim themselves as Trivia Bowl champions.

Congratulations in advance to that team.  And all the best to all teams who will participate.

And may the sniping, cajoling, teasing, catcalling, and snarky responses commence… right… about…


Best of Our TU Community Bloggers, January 8, 2015: Ten for Thursday

It’s morning again in America … and it’s six degrees below zero.

And that’s not even factoring in the wind chill factor.

So I have a perfect solution to avoid the cold.

Read these blogs.  All ten of them.  These ten Times Union community bloggers will bring you knowledge and information and provocative thought and concept.

Fire up your web browsers, and check out these entries.  They include:

  1. Kim Swidler’s “Travel Gal” blog, “Iceland’s Golden Circle.
  2. Dan Lyons’ Classic Cars blog, “Rear View Mirror: 1979 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am.
  3. Jen Smith’s “Austin Ben Connor” family blog, “Parental oversight.
  4. Rob Hoffman’s “The Hoffman Files” blog, “1975: The worst year ever?
  5. Mary Martin’s “A Good Enough Life” blog, “2015: Who are we now?
  6. Jeannine Trimboli’s “Real [FIT] Life” blog, “The financial adventures of a single mom: The Good Stuff.
  7. Chase Jones in the Transgender blog, “Trans-chaos.
  8. Gina Peca’s blog, “Just say yes!
  9. Ken Screven’s blog, “A moment with Mario Cuomo.
  10. Linda Berkery’s guest post in Fran Rossi Scpylczyn’s “There Will Be Bread” blog, “Touchstones of Faith.

And there you have it.  After you’ve read these blogs, the temperature outside should increase by a few degrees.  Times Union community bloggers.  Their posts are guaranteed to work like insulation! 🙂

Waterfalls, flags and solace

It’s no secret that my life has been going through some inner turmoil.  I need to do something about it.

Maybe a few shots with my cameras can help ease things.

Last week, I shot a few rolls of film with my vintage cameras.  I was still trying to find something that would work with my new Kodak Medalist II, and I also wanted to take the Agfa Chief and the Agfa Clack out for a few shots.

First I drove to the Helderbergs.  It’s still snowing there, if you can believe it. It was there, along Ketcham Road, that I saw several farm animals grazing and relaxing. The cold didn’t bother them. Ended up with this picture for my troubles.

Last week, I tried getting a few shots of this waterfall along Route 66 in Troy. Not the one I usually photograph – the Mt. Ida Falls – that one now has a protective fence to keep people from sliding down to the summit and having beer parties and leaving their trash behind.

I then shot the same falls with My Agfa Chief, with a pack of Kodak Verichrome Pan in the chassis.

After some careful consideration, I found a way to get as close to the falls as possible. Almost as if I could wash my feet in the overflow. And I shot straight down with the Agfa Chief.

Then, on the way home, I caught a glimpse of a flag that had suffered rips and tears. The flag’s edges fluttered too close to a tree branch, got caught in the tree tips, and over time the flag ripped and shredded to the point where it looked like this.

I do want you to know that when I drove by the same area yesterday, someone did replace the flag and prune back those nasty branches.  So a fresh flag now flies on that flagpole, free from fraying and fenestration.

I don’t know… bulls laying on the cold ground… tattered flags still flying… tree branches stuck in waterfalls…

I’m going through a lot lately.  A whole lot of a lot.  Maybe it’s the weather or maybe it’s the malaise… but it seems like lately the only things my cameras can capture right now are the damaged portions of my soul.

Please, spring, hurry up and arrive.  I need the flowers and the green grass and the birds again.

I need to heal.

A moment of zen in Round Lake

I tell you, if I hadn’t glanced over to the right while I was driving up Route 9 towards Saratoga Springs… I would have missed this sign completely.

You know the drill. Got out of the car. Nikon D700 camera in the bag. Nikkor 28mm f/2.8 lens with polarizing filter on it. Ready. Aim. Shoot.

Sometimes you can plan all day to get a good picture.

And sometimes you just happen to be in the right place at the right time…

The “blog-specific” bracket – and the winner is…

Well, it was a tough battle throughout…

But in the end, D357 won the Blog Bracket when he defeated Pat – well, Louisville defeated Duke – and so D357 can claim bragging rights as the Blog Bracket winner.


(1) D357 (Louisville)
(16) Doodle (NC A&T)
D357 D357 D357 D357
(8) Chad 9978 (Colorado St)
(9) HokieMom (Missouri)
Chad 9978
(5) Roz (Oklahoma State)
(12) Bill W (Oregon)
Bill W Bill W
(4) Potrzebie (Saint Louis)
(13) LB (New Mexico State)
(6) Erin’s Dad (Memphis)
(11) LwoodBluz (St. Mary’s)
Erin’s Dad Jango Davis Pat
(3) Jango Davis (Michigan State)
(14) Grey Cat (Valpo)
Jango Davis
(7) J Mac (Creighton)
(10) Lazygal (Cincinnati)
J Mac
(2) Pat (Duke)
(15) Woo Hoo Supreme (Albany)

Maybe I’ll do this again next year.  We shall see!

What happened to those puppies is beyond reprehensible.

I saw this story and my heart just sank into the ground. I can’t even find the proper words for what this. Just watch the embedded video clip and try not to feel hatred and disgust for the crumb who hurt and nearly killed these three puppies.;;playerWidth=630;playerHeight=355;isShowIcon=true;clipId=7709636;flvUri=;partnerclipid=;adTag=News;advertisingZone=;enableAds=true;landingPage=;islandingPageoverride=false;playerType=STANDARD_EMBEDDEDscript_EMBEDDEDscript;controlsType=overlayNEWS10 ABC: Albany, New York News, Weather, Sports

That has to be the most repulsive thing I’ve ever seen anyone do to a defenseless animal. I can’t even fathom any sort of rational thought behind this act.

Thankfully, the animals were rescued and are now at the Mohawk Hudson River Humane Society. They’re going to need months of physical therapy and veterinarian care. And I hope that whoever adopts these poor puppies will give them the love and care and support that the puppies’ previous owner couldn’t even be bothered to provide.

And now, I have a few words for the puppies’ previous owner, whoever he or she may be.

I hope to God that when the police find you, they throw Buster’s Law and every other animal cruelty law at you. Not only did you hurt those three little puppies, you set them up to be killed by an oncoming train. What you did was more than just animal cruelty. This was animal torture, plain and simple.

What were you going to do, wait until the 4:15 came by and hit those puppies? What were you going to do then? High-five your buddies and go find some more puppies to maim and mutilate? Was this done on some sort of bet? On some sort of ritualistic initiation?

You contemptible pile of filth. There isn’t a single justifiable reason or excuse for what you did.

I’m not asking for karma to find you.

With those three puppies… I’m asking for justice.