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Yesterday after our Louisianna hike, we drove our way East to Mississippi.  As soon as we got there, we hopped onto the Natchez Trace Trail, which is a scenic drive that will take you from Natchez, Mississippi all the way up to Nashville, Tennesee.  Along the trail, there were many little towns and attractions to visit. One stop we made was the Mississippi Craft Center. Outside the craft center there was a booth where some blacksmiths were doing metal work. They were really friendly guys and offered to show us some of the work they were doing and the process used to create some of their intricate designs. While we were there, they were in the process of building and forming some big screws. They had a few furnaces as you see in the photos which would be turned up to about 2900 degrees.  They would bury the metal in some of the coals there to make sure that it would heat up to a malleable state.  They would then use some tools to grab the bolt and bring it over to a work horse where they would take a 25-30 lb. hammer to slam it into its final form.  They only had a few seconds to do this before the metal would cool off to a state where it was no longer formable.  Using this process along with some different tools and molds is how they would create some of the pieces you see below. The rest of the craft center was a very modern looking building that housed some very beautiful artwork. It was really neat to look around and a great stop to break up our 5 hour drive up to Tupelo, Mississippi.

Mississippi Blacksmith-04

These were shot with my Nikon D600 and 24-75mm f/2.8.


lens rental



Just about once every 3 months I need to try some coffee to remind myself just how much I hate it! I love the smell, the look, the feel, the idea, and the culture surrounding coffee. I just hate the flavor! I honestly don’t see how anyone can drink it.  My dad always said it tastes like dirt and I wholly agree with him. However, as I said, I do love the culture.  And one thing I love about the culture is latte art. I have been looking into it recently and for a school project  had to photograph a drink, so I thought capturing the art of the latte would be sweet.  I worked with some people at Rinnova coffee shop to try to get me some cool shapes in the coffee.  I thought this one came out pretty sweet with a kind of smokey look to it.  I then set up a little studio in the back of our SGA office. I loved the rich color and grain of the table in our office, so brought that to the back kitchen where it was dark so I could better control the light.  I then brought back a lamp that I could use as a pretty harsh light source bringing out some of the detail in the latte foam. After I shot a few of just the drink, I got a little cliche and brought in the bible to get some classic ‘coffee and bible’ shots.  After all the photographing I tried the coffee again just to remind myself how much I hated it.  Disgusting!!


These were shot with my nikon D600 with my 50 mm at 1/80s f/6.3 and ISO 400.

Latte art thanks to Sara Kochanowski.






Savannah Georgia was just a quick stop along the way to break up our 17 hour drive back to Cedarville from Del Ray.  We had heard a lot of cool things about it and being that we were passing through a little after dinner time, we thought it would be worth checking out.  And it was! I think most of the guys would agree that we shied we could have spent more time there.  The town had a very old and historic feel to it with no building over 7 stories tall and the brick and cobblestone roads.  We also happened to land there on a very lively evening.  Right before we got there, the town had just finished up their Shamrock 5k so everyone was out donned in their crazy green clothes and out having a good time.  Everywhere we went was packed. One thing we loved was how open and airy everything was too.  There was live music being played out in the streets, people eating outside, and rooftop patio bars that people could look out onto the street from. One place we loved was the candy shop right next to our pizza place.  It felt like we were in Willy Wonkas chocolate factory.  They were making taffy right in front of us and we saw this whole system of how the taffy got made and transported to its place in the store using conveyor belts.  We also got a lot of free samples there.  We ended up eating at Vinnie Van GoGo’s pizza place. This was one of the coolest restraints I had been to.  It was one of those places that you could barely move in once you were inside because it was so tight.  They were tossing pizza dough and making the pizzas right in front of everyone.  I regrettably didn’t end up getting any good pictures in there because it was so tight and there was hardly any light in the place so you’ll just have to believe me that it was a pretty sweet place! Its something that you would more have to experience anyway because of the whole atmosphere of the town and its location.  After our pizza we walked around the town much, and since I was sick of carrying around my 30lb. camera bag, I just brought my camera with the 28-75 mm lens.  I completely forgot to even grab my tripod which is accessory number 1 when shooting at night.  So I had to really push the limits of my new cameras ISO and use makeshift tripods such as railings and stone pillars.  We were also kind of rushed so I wasn’t able to set up some shots that i wanted, but it is definitely a place I would like to return to someday to capture more of the old town feel!  Quite a contrast from Miami just a few nights ago.  After our brief visit in Savannah, we continued our drive all the way back north up to Ohio which took about 11 more hours.  We arrived at about 10 am, and we had lost about 45 degrees from what we had in Florida 😦 It was a great relaxing vacation though, and I am glad I rush ordered my D600 so that I had it for this break! There were a lot of great opportunities to use the extra power of it during the week.  I hope you enjoyed seeing some shots of our trip throughout the week!  Thanks for following along 🙂

ImageThese were shot with my Nikon D600 with my 28-75mm f/2.8.  As I mentioned earlier, I forgot my tripod, so I was shooting at 1600-3200 for most of these. And look at how little noise there is! Very happy with my new camera.