Cerebral Gibberish

What's on my mind, might just blow yours.

Models for Charity @ Sparians

Posted by heymoe on January 9th, 2011


Well it’s a new year so I guess it’s time for me to start updating my blog again. We’ll see how long this last. 🙂

A friend of mine, Lindsay S., recently joined the Models for Charity organization and her first runway show was this past Friday (1/7/2011) at Sparians Bowling Boutique & Bistro’s Grand Opening Celebration. I headed out there with my gear to capture her public debut and met up with a few other local photographers that I know there. I was able to capture some amazing shots of Lindsay and her fellow models who all did a wonderful job.

Sparians Bowling Boutique & Bistro is not your typical bowling alley. They basically took a full service bar attached it to a decent sized dinning room and a bowling alley which has been classed up with really big protection screens over the pins and comfy sofas and chairs along with a very different atmosphere. There are also two rooms in the back for private parties each with their own lanes and one with another stocked bar. The alleys are lighted with dance lighting effects and black lights with a fully automated scoring systems which seems to really watch the clock in that it will start nagging you if you don’t bowl your turn quickly after the last person. I will say the grand opening wasn’t as packed as I thought it would be and the service was a little slow but better then the previous night that I was there so hopefully they will find their grove and have a prosperous future in the area.

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Photo in the Wild

Posted by heymoe on March 17th, 2010

My Photo for the 50 Photographers, 50 Images Show

Back in 2008 I took part in an art gallery show titled “50 Photographers, 50 Images”. The photo I submitted for that show was taken inside the “Levity III” Luminaria by the Architects of Air that was setup at the Art on the Edge event downtown Raleigh late that summer.

The artist that creates the Luminaria, Alan Parkinson, saw my photo on Flickr and contacted me to get permission to use my photo to promote his wonderful works of art which I was more then happy to do.

Well I received an email from Alan a few weeks ago letting me know that their website has been updated and my photo is on display in their gallery to show visitors what the inside of the “Levity III” Luminaria looks like.

My photo is currently located in the bottom left hand corner of the gallery and is credited to me. It’s so cool to see one of my photos on display one someone else’s website.. Woot! 🙂

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LEGO-palooza 6

Posted by heymoe on March 15th, 2010


Yay! Not only is this the first post of the year it’s the first official post in about 8 months. I still have a backlog of stuff I will eventually find time to post but I figured it would be best to post about recent events first then feed the older stuff in later.

Any ways, this past weekend I went to LEGO-palooza 6 at Morehead Planetarium to checkout all the creations by the members of NCLUG (North Carolina LEGO User Group).


Getting to Morehead Planetarium was an adventure in of itself since I don’t visit Chapel Hill all that often. Finding the place was easy enough thanks to my GPS but finding a packing space was a whole other story but I did eventually find a parking deck within walking distance. Once there I think I wondered into / past just about every possible entrance into the building except for the one that took you to LEGO-palooza 6. I will admit that there were signs pointing people in the right direction but it wasn’t until after multiple failures at picking the right door that I ended up asking for directions at which time I saw the signs. Also I wasn’t the only person having problems finding the right door since I heard other people in the wrong lines I were in talking about going to see the LEGO structures.


Entering the building via the correct door this time, the first thing you sew was a huge LEGO skyscraper in the stairwell leading to the second floor where the rest of the displays were located. The skyscraper was just about 2 stories tall and you circled it as you walked up the stairs. Entering the main room for the event you were greeted by a large ocean battle scene with armadas of ships in in battle with each other as well and with creatures of the deep. At one end of the display was a coastal fortress with troops at the ready to defend their fort from the pirates.


The rest of the room seemed to be divided into different genres for the most part. You had science fiction / fantasy on one end, more modern times on the other, wild west and navel / pirates in the center, medieval / castles along the back wall, etc… Some of the displays were made up of standard kits you could buy at a LEGO Store while others were custom creations or a mixture of both. All of the displays had some sort of story to tell and if you looked hard enough there were even some Easter Eggs for the adults to enjoy such as in the western display that had a saloon / brothel in it with LEGO cowboys handing over cash to LEGO “cowgirls”.


Some of the displays that I really liked the most were the Star Wars: Battle on Hoth, the LEGO Transformers that actually transformed, the finer details of the large cityscapes and the medieval castle with landscape and no I’m not just including the castle because I know who built it. I found the multi-layer design of the castle to be unique and that each layer, which represented different areas of the castle such as stables, dungeon, dining hall, etc…, in of itself had it’s own story to tell and were very detailed.

Well, that’s all for now.. Enjoy the pictures!

More Photos Here (PicLens PicLens Button)


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4th of July 2009

Posted by heymoe on July 6th, 2009

I hope everyone had a great 4th of July weekend. I was on-call but did manage to get out of the house and join some friends at Cary’s Booth Amphitheater where we enjoyed a picnic style dinner, a bottle of wine and some ice cream while listening to the NC Symphony and ending the evening watching the fireworks. I forgot to bring my tripod so my fireworks photos are a little shaky / blurry this time.

More Photos Here (PicLens PicLens Button)

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Phew! Strawberry Picking

Posted by heymoe on May 2nd, 2009

Just got back from strawberry picking at farm up the street from my house. The owners of the farm are really nice and they have been running the strawberry patch for at least 5 years now. I must have been out in the patch for almost 2 hours picking. I ended up with about 20 pounds of fresh strawberries that I’m going to make into a strawberry wine.

My Blueberry + Mango wine is in the aging stage now but won’t be ready for consumption for at least another 4 months. I figured I better get another wine queued up since the aging process takes so long.

My Blueberry Hefeweizen (wheat) beer is almost done. I got it in the keg a little over a week ago and under co2 pressure to get it up to the proper carbonation level. It should be ready in another week or two.

My Keezer / Kegerator build is stalled while I wait for the drip tray to arrive. Once I get the drip tray in hand I can finish laying out / designing the table top. Right now I leaning toward having the table top done in tile, which I’ve never done before but this is as good of a time as any to learn. I finished the base last weekend, I just need to sand and stain it along with the table top when it’s done. I’m looking forward to having 3 taps in house with my home brew ready to be served.

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Adventures in Wine Making: Part 1

Posted by heymoe on February 23rd, 2009

Adventure in Wine Making: Part 1

Getting ready to pitch the yeast

Well, I decided I needed another hobby this weekend so I’m jumping into the world of home brewing.

I did some research online and found two local homebrewing supply shops (American Brew Master & Brew Master Store) and decided to stop by American Brew Master on Saturday on my way to a photography meet-up. While there I picked up one of their Deluxe Home Wine Making Kit (IE: Hardware) along with a few other supplies.

Now I could have also purchased one of the many pre-package wine recipes which include all the ingredients (IE: Juice, Additives, Yeast, etc..) you need to make 6 gallons of wine but instead I decided to jump directly to making wine from whole fruit / berries using a recipe from the book that came with the Deluxe Home Wine Making Kit as a guide and throwing in a few custom changes of my own. So for my first wine I’m making a Blueberry Mango blend so if it works I’m going to call it Moangoberry 🙂

I stopped by Costco on the way home from American Brew Master and picked up 15 pounds of blueberries and 8 mangos along with a 25lb bag of sugar.

Once I got home I spent some time sanitizing the primary fermentation bucket and other hardware that would come in contact with the must as I was getting it ready. Everything I’ve read so far about wine making says sanitization is the most important step(s) of the wine making (or beer making which I’ll be trying next) process. By sanitizing everything you’re killing all of the other wild yeasts, molds, bacteria, etc.. that would love to feed on your must thus turning your wine into some nasty and unappetizing.

Next I pulled out my Blendtec blender, which I sanitized as well, and started to blend the blueberries and mangos which was then placed into the primary fermentation bucket. I then mixed in 12lb of sugar, 6 tsp. of Yeast Nutrient, which adds nitrogen to the must to help the yeast reproduce faster and helps clear the wine, 9 tsp. of Acid Blend, which is used to raise the acidity of wine, 6 tsp. of Pectic Enzyme, which helps break down the fruit prior to fermentation and aids in clarifying the wine, and finally 6 Campden Tablets, which kills certain bacteria and inhibits the growth of most wild yeast. Once all of these ingredients were well mixed, I added enough water to bring the total volume of the must to 6 gallons. I mixed the must one more time and placed the primary fermentation bucket into my bathtub.

The must needs to sit for 24 hours to let some of the ingredients to do their work before pitching the yeast which I’ll be doing around 9pm Sunday. Then we wait a week or so while the yeast does it’s thing before performing the first racking.

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Google Mobile Maps v3.0.2

Posted by heymoe on February 18th, 2009

Storm and Google Maps

Some said it would never happen. Some said the programmers of Google Mobile Maps were idiots. Even some said it was all Verizon’s fault. All I know is as of v3.0.2, Google Mobile Maps can now use the internal GPS of my Blackberry Storm.

No longer will I be located in the light blue circle of uncertainty plus now I can use the new Latitude feature that Google released a few weeks ago a whole lot easier.


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Catching Up

Posted by heymoe on February 17th, 2009

Sorry for the lack of updates and it wasn’t because I didn’t have anything to write about. I’ve had several things queued up over the past several months that I’ve been meaning to write about but for one reason or another, I just wasn’t able to find the time to get the work done.

So, since I had a 3 day weekend and was more or less stuck at home because I’m on-call this week, I decided to finish post-processing the photos and create a single post to get caught up. Enjoy!

George Clinton Concert: 05/10/2008
I think I found out about this concert over the radio and ever since watching the movie PCU, I thought it would be cool to see George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic in person. Hobex was the opening band and before George Clinton took the stage, the large cast of “characters” that make up the Funkadelic did their performances with their normal to the “OMG I really didn’t want to see that” type of outfits (IE: A grownup in a diaper). This was my first attempt at photographing a concert which also happened to be outside at night. I wish I had the Nikon 80-200mm lens I have now back then but I made due with my Sigma 150mm lens. I left after the last official song but later found out all the bands headed inside Lincoln Theater and kept on rocking into the night.

More Photos Here (PicLens PicLens Button)

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Triangle Strobist Auguest Meetup: 08/19/2008
I attended a monthly Triangle Strobist (Flickr) meet up which was held in one of the parking garages on Centennial Campus. These meet ups are suppose to teach people lighting techniques using off camera lighting typically with small strobe / speedlight units but this meet up turned more or less into a free-for-all. The wife of one of the photographers was kind enough to be our model for the event and another let us use their Mustang as a prop as well. I did learn that even though my camera supports an IR wireless flash trigger system, it has line-of-sight limitations and I really need to get some actual RF wireless flash triggers.

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Lassiter Mill Park: 10/12/2008
Someone in one of the Flickr groups I subscribe to posted about their waterfall photo shoot they had at Lassiter Mill Park. I like taking photos of flowing water so I took a trip out there to check it out. I had my tripod with me so I could take some long exposures of the waterfalls and since I was wearing shorts, I waded into the water around the falls to try and get closer to them. There isn’t really much left of the mill except for some old framing timbers and metal beams. Yates Mill Park is the place you want to go to if you want to see a mill.

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Zombie Walk 2008: 10/25/2008
I spent a few hours downtown to photograph the 2008 Zombie Walk before heading to Fair, which I already posted about HERE. I don’t know exactly how many people showed up but I would say there was at least 100 people there dressed up as zombies walking the streets of downtown.

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Lake Lynn Park: 11/02/2008
I driven past this park many times but never realized there was a lake you could walk around. Yeah, I know the park is called Lake Lynn Park but I didn’t learn that until I visited the park that day. Any ways, I think I missed the peek of fall colors by a week or so but some of the trees still had their wonderful colors going. I didn’t walk all the way around the lake during this trip but did go back recently to test out my new Ultra Wide angle Tokina 11-16mm lens and did one full circuit around the lake which I believe was a little over 2 miles.

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Full Moon: 12/12/2008
I took a short drive down some back roads around my house to find a nice dark area to take some pictures of the biggest and brightest full moon of 2008. I wish I had a longer zoom lens but even with cropping the photos taken with my 200mm lens, you can still make out features on the moon’s surface.

More Photos Here (PicLens PicLens Button)



Museum of Life and Science: 01/18/2009
I made a trip to the NC Museum of Life and Science with the Raleigh Outdoor Photography Club Meet-Up group to take some photos inside the butterfly house. The Museum has a lot more things to see outside the butterfly house so I really need to make another trip out there to check out all of the other exhibits.

More Photos Here (PicLens PicLens Button)

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Snow 2009: 01/20/2009
YEAH!! We finally got some snow. Just eyeballing it, it looks like I got between 4″ to 6″ of snow around my house. When I shoveled my driveway I piled it all on one side hopping enough would stick around to make a snowman during the weekend but when I woke up on Saturday, it was all gone 🙁

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First New Year Photos: 2009

Posted by heymoe on January 4th, 2009

It has been awhile since I’ve posted some new photos and that’s not because I haven’t taken any. I’ve just been too lazy to post process them and get them uploaded but they will come sooner or later.

Any ways, to start out the new year I decided to by myself a New Year gift. I’ve been using a Nikkor 17-55mm for almost a year now and it’s a wonderful lens but I found myself wishing it was a little wider. I thought about getting the Nikkor 14-24mm thinking that I would start collecting some full frame glass but in the end I decided to hold off since I would only gain 3mm on the wide end and it costs around $1500. I also looked at the Sigma 10-20mm and in general it sounded like most owner liked it but seemed to have some sharpness issues especially around the edges. After looking at a few others I happened upon the Tokina 11-16mm. Released in mid-2008, this lens has collected a lot of glowing reviews in the short amount of time. It has a constant f/2.8 aperture, very good sharpness numbers, good build quality and very well priced at around $570. Another good sign that I ran into was that this lens was out-of-stock at most of the reputable on-line dealers so I thought I was out-of-luck for the time being.. or was I. I stopped by Peace Camera to see if they had a filter I was looking for so while I was there I checked to see if they also had the lens in stock and they did. Well, my need for some instant gratification kicked in so I bought it even though it cost a little more then buying it on-line.


So last Saturday I joined the Triangle East Photography group and went to their State Capitol Tour. I arrived downtown a little early so I took a quick detour to the N.C. State bell tower to test out the new lens. Now I’ve used my Nikkor 17-55mm to take pictures of the bell tower before and it worked fine since I had space to back up to get it in the frame but the new Tokina 11-16mm pretty much allowed me to get right up next to the bell tower and still fit the whole thing in the frame. This allowed for some really neat perspective shots.


Well after about 20 mins at the bell tower it was time to head back downtown to meet up with the group next to the capitol building. We spent some time outside to mingle some and to take some shots of the building before we headed inside for the tour. This is the first time I’ve actually been right up next to the capitol building and it was neat to see the architecture up close. I also didn’t realize that there is a church at each corner of the capital building so I thought that was interesting.


Heading into the capitol building our tour started on the 1st floor in the rotunda where a statue of George Washington sits in the middle. The tour guide explained how the capitol building came to be and a fascinating story behind the statue. From there we headed up to the 2nd floor and got to view the inside of the House of Representatives and Senate chambers. Outside the chambers was the 2nd floor rotunda. We then moved up to the 3rd floor where you can view down into the two chambers on the 2nd floor from the balcony. The 3rd floor also housed the Library and the Geologist’s Office.

After the tour of the capitol, the group took a short walk down Fayetteville Street to take some photos. I got a few shots of the Wachovia …. er.. I mean.. Wellsfargo tower and the RBC tower and other random stuff.

All in all it was a fun first photo outing of the New Year with hopefully more to come.

More Photos Here (PicLens PicLens Button)


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Storm Leak: v4.7.0.85

Posted by heymoe on December 27th, 2008


I was able to talk my company into upgrading my old Blackberry 8703e to the new Blackberry Storm a few weeks ago. The days leading up to its arrival I spent a lot of time reading the forums over at CrackBerry.com to see what I could learn about the new Storm, tips-n-tricks, hacks, etc..

When the day finally arrived I spent pretty much the whole day playing and trying out some of the things I learned from the forums. All was well until I started to play around with customizing my ring-tones. I went to make a change with one of the pull-downs when the Storm locked up. So I pulled the battery to reboot it. When it loaded the home screen it was locked up again and rebooted on its own again. So in less then 24 hours I some how managed to kill my first Storm by customizing my ring-tones. Yeah!

The next morning I stopped by the Verizon store and luckily they had some in stock. The customer service guy said they just received a new batch and this was the first day they still had some in stock. Once I got to work I was able to quickly get the new unit up and running.

The official version of code that Verizon support is currently v4.7.0.75 which was a big improvements over the version of code that the Storm first shipped with but it still has a lot of problems and bugs. I found out one the forums that there was a leaked version of newer code (v4.7.0.83) so I decided to test it out. Even though I only used v4.7.0.75 for a day or so, I was able to notice improvements in the speed / responsiveness of the device as well a fixes for some bugs I noticed with the Media Player. One of the bigger improvement was with battery life. Before the upgrade I had to recharge the Storm after about 20 hours of usage. After the upgrade the Storm lasted just about 3 full days before I had to change it again.

Any ways, even though I persoanlly wasn’t running into any major problems with v4.7.0.83, a lot of other people on the forums were so when news of another leaked version hit the forums last Thursday, people were couldn’t wait to get their hands on it.

So after waiting two days, v4.7.0.85 has finally been publicly leaked. It took me about 20 mins to Backup, Wipe, Install the OS and Restore my backup. So now I’m running v4.7.0.85 and so far I haven’t really found any differences between v4.0.7.83 and v4.7.0.85. For anyone else wanting to take v4.7.0.85 for a spin here are some links where you can download it. Enjoy!


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