Custom shutter company. Wheelchair canopy.

Custom Shutter Company

custom shutter company

  • Close (a business)

  • Close the shutters of (a window or building)

  • a mechanical device on a camera that opens and closes to control the time of a photographic exposure

  • close with shutters; "We shuttered the window to keep the house cool"

  • a hinged blind for a window

  • Associate with; keep company with

  • an institution created to conduct business; "he only invests in large well-established companies"; "he started the company in his garage"

  • be a companion to somebody

  • Accompany (someone)

  • small military unit; usually two or three platoons

  • Established practice or usage having the force of law or right

  • A traditional and widely accepted way of behaving or doing something that is specific to a particular society, place, or time

  • A thing that one does habitually

  • accepted or habitual practice

  • custom-made: made according to the specifications of an individual

  • a specific practice of long standing

"Fixers" in Travel Photography!

"Fixers" in Travel Photography!

Since I recognized my obsession as it relates to photography, cultures and customs the world over, I have been self studying the art of all kinds of photography. My long-term goal (and new found dream) of business ownership has shifted a bit to include some kind of professional “picture making” venture partnered with my own Private Investigative/Security company.

I buy all the magazines, read online tutorials, have learned a modest “curriculum” dealing with Photoshop and spend hours upon hours snapping away at my shutter release button trying to get that one perfect shot that will be the break I need that presents the opportunity to place my foot in the proverbial door of being able to claim the title of, Professional Photographer!

In the July 2010 Issue of Shutterbug Magazine there is a feature on Location and Travel Photography. In one of the articles mentions a term I have never heard of before but was well versed in – “Fixers”. Or, local national/indigenous personnel hired by the photographer to guide him or her throughout their respective nations in quest of obtaining unique and interesting photographs.

Initially I read with great interest but, I quickly became disappointed in the article’s inspirational abilities. I was a bit saddened by the alleged cost of some Fixers in certain countries – some going for as little as a dollar or two a day. I didn’t quite agree with the implications of pride by the author who claimed to have spent three weeks in Africa on a photo-shoot with… “The total disbursements to subjects, and sometimes, village elders came to $65.” Much to the author’s credit however, it was noted that... "If guides are very good there is always a tip. And if they're really, really good, I stay in touch with them." What do you tip on a dollar or two a day? How about the tip for 65 dollars for three weeks? I’m sorry but this disgusted me a bit.

If I’m in the middle of offending you professional travel photographers out there, I’m sorry. I’m just at odds at how certain local national/indigenous persons are treated at times. Surely you guys/gals (Professionals) can afford to pay a little more than a dollar or two a day…or $65 for three weeks. I’m willing to bet, for the most part, these “Fixers”, as I now know the term, are not very wealthy to begin with and have families they are trying their best to raise. I’m sorry, a dollar or two a day and 65 dollars for three weeks is insulting to me. I just don’t understand it.

No, I’m not attacking the author of this article – I’m trying not to anyway. My intent is not to badmouth anyone or whatever but, to me, it seems those of us venturing into native (other than our own) lands for the simple process of taking photos, or whatever, has, or should have a sense of responsibility. Can you afford more than one or two dollars a day or 65 dollars for three weeks? If the answer is yes then pay more. One of my biggest pet-peeves in the overseas security contracting business is when those who are making six figure plus salaries justify the very low payment of local nationals because as they claim, in their countries they can live like kings off the salary currently being paid. Well, let me tell you this is a bunch of malarkey! If a company can afford to pay more – pay more! Do we really, absolutely, without question have to make every penny we can in profit? Why do you think there are such epidemic infestations of vast global social-divides?

The two young men pictured above were my Fixers on this outing. My mother and her fiance arrived in Micronesia where I lived and worked for a two week vacation. I paid each well over what the so called “standard” puts at a few dollars a day. Why, because I could afford it and because they needed more than I did. For some strange reason I seem to be different than most people I meet. I don’t care about making every penny I can in profit off the backs of those who need a little help placing their shoes into the doors of better lives for themselves and their families.

These two guides were really good and like in the article, I stay in touch with them. I financed their trip to America to be able to live with their families and get a decent education. I may not be a professional travel photographer… yet, but – I know what it is like to travel the globe and live with day in and day out, local nationals and indigenous populations from the Balkans to Micronesia. I have learned quite a few valuable life lessons! ;-) One of these lessons deals with respect...

I don't want to become a professional photographer for praise, fame or fortune - I want to become a professional because I truly enjoy documenting the world around me and have become addicted to that feeling I get when I see a great final result staring back at me on my computer screen that the entire world has the potential to enjoy looking upon.

Hiking reward - hot springs

Hiking reward - hot springs

Thank goodness for the Canon G9's custom shutter release setting. I have both the G9 and G10 set for three photos after a 30 second delay. That gives me plenty of time to get in the photo, even when traveling bare foot.

June 23 -25, 2010 My wife and I decided to attend the annual fiddlers’ contest in Weiser, Idaho. In the spirit of the “journey” can many times be as enjoyable or more than the “destination”, we decided to take a looping “road trip” to and from the Weiser fiddler’s festival.

Day one we traveled “back roads” to Wendover campground along the Lochsa River on Lolo Pass (the Idaho side). We camped in the back of our pickup truck and really enjoyed our stay. A nice camp host (Bill from Lewiston, Idaho), dropped by and donated a few dry white pine firewood logs to our camp. We returned the nice gesture by dropping some “camp” raspberry and chocolate muffins by for them. Nice people.

Day two we left camp early and backtracked a bit to the trailhead for some nice hot springs. We arrived early and crossed the Lochsa on the pack trail bridge and took the quiet lovely hike up Warm Springs Creek to two large hot springs pool (1.5 mile hike).

We passed the hotter lower pool and settled into the upper “bath warm” clear, sandy bottom hot springs pool. A couple of deer, visiting the area for the minerals in the soil in the area, were our only company.

After our relaxing hot springs soak we hiked out, drove over Lolo Pass. We drove the Salmon, Challis, Stanley, Lowman route and finished the day by getting a cabin for the night.

Day three we drove down the Payette River drainage and over to Weiser, Idaho. We really had a lot of fun at the fiddlers’ festival. We walked, watched blue grass, country singers, and then out to the Weiser High School gym to watch the Grand National Round 2 competition. We got to see 18 of some of the best fiddlers you would ever want to hear play. One of the best, who has won the event several times and I had seen perform on a PBS television show, was a finalist as was his sister.

We watched all 18 compete and my wife enjoyed a bowl of strawberries they were selling at the concession stand at the high school. I LOVE fiddle music and this was the first time I had attended the Weiser competition. I didn’t know quite what to expect, but it was very “audience friendly”. The judges sit in a different room so they don’t see the fiddlers they are judging, nor do they know the name of the fiddler.

After the round 2 competition we watched some of the “young adult” competition, and then we returned to the city center fiddlers’ village venue, to eat a “light” dinner (I went for a BBQ pork sandwich and baked beans).

We left Weiser and crossed below the Brownlee dam, intending to drive up Forest Service road 59 and camp on the upper Imnaha River and drive home via Joseph, Oregon the next day. Driving up Pine Creek in the direction of Halfway, Oregon we could see the evidence of a massive flash flood in the area, so when we arrived FR 59 and saw the “road closed” sign, we weren’t completely shocked.

When we stopped for a short while in Halfway, Oregon a lady showed me aerial photos of the six or so major road washouts caused by the flooding in the area this year. It might take them awhile to open the road again.

Accepting the “change in plans” we drove to Baker City, got on the interstate and headed on home. Fun times…once again.

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