After nearly 20 years in big Tokyo I was feeling burned out in my not-so-successful "career" in the service industry, knocking on several after a chance discovery of cheap old farmhouses we set out towards the countryside - but still close enough for my wife to further pursue her working live, commuting by Shinkansen while I would take care of the house and kids and build my own little cafe at home...
Our first bump came when we realized that the bank wasn't willing to give a loan for an old rundown house on some worthless property in the "Hinterland". So, we changed plans and will be building a new house. We already bought the plot last year, with about 400 square meters size, and I have started the vegetable garden beforehand, next project will be the garden house.

22 April, 2011

Hannah's Dinner Show

Today we will let you take par in our daily Evening Show, which comprises
various elements  from the tragical up to the most comical genre
 Hello you out there, ready?

 First let me have a sip to get my tummy in gear

Medium Body, deep brown color, round finish - Oolong Tea?

Don't stuff, I'll miss half of the taste!

 So Daddy, what's today's Menu?
Riz e legume a la Maison, Poisson

 Aaeehh ...

You know very well that I haven't learnt French yet
 Don't joke about food, man. Dinner is serious business

 Let me see that, before I decide wether to eat it or not

Do you truly believe yourself when you say this is delicious?

 What are you saying, I got something stuck between my front teeth?

That colour looks highly suspicious

 No, I can't stand it anymore!

 Yoo, still with me?
 Hey Daddy, where are you going?

 I already told you, this is serious, don't treat me like that, 
I have more hair than you!

 Aah, you got yourself a cold beer, ok.

 The food hasn't much improved I must say

 Let me have it already

 So, you think that's entertaining already?

 Wait till I get a sip of that beer

 Yes, that's nice, I can feel my toenails rolling up already

 Tomorrow I'm going to have a hangover

 Hello mom, this feels funny!
 Look I can make faces
Guess, what animal is this?
 No, it's not a fish!

 Daddy, mom is funny, too

 Ok, who is this actor?

You know it?
Yes, it's Jack Nickolson!

 I can sing also!

 I didn't hear that comment from you daddy!

 Wow, that was a nice dinner, 
 I'm tired

 Now for some quality relax time

See you!
Good Night

This session was a planned event, meaning I did some minimal preparations:
  • Set up the tripod in a manner that I wouldn't accidentally knock it over and adjust the height to a bit lower than Hannah's face.
  • Up the lighting in the neighboring room (right off the pics), so the shadows from the main ceiling light would appear softer.
  • Set up the camera before putting Hannah in her chair with the right program, aperture, etc. If possible use a "dummy" like a big puppet, or even your own face to see the exposure and shadows, focus and be sure there is enough space in the frame to allow for movement, or show another person. It is very easy to later cut the pictures to the right size with a software.
  • I have a very small wireless remote control for my camera (sometimes you might see it at the bottom of pic) which makes taking pictures very easy but has two a few disadvantages: you have to set the focus directly at the camera (half-press) - if you are not careful, your whole session might be blurred! And there is a red light at the front of the camera blinking happily, creating a distraction, but having the advantage that you know whether the camera is on or not, because it times out rather fast, so I am careful to snap a pic every 30 second or so to keep it running. This being my first time to use it like this, the camera did "die" a few times on me, but it actually saved me, because the first focus setting had Hannah rather blurred, but after reactivating the camera the focus adjusted and saved the dinner for me! The sensor is right next to the light, only, nothing at the back or side, so I have to position the camera in a way (left side behind my) that I can be sure that the sensor catches every click I throw at it. For now this is fine with me, but it is another detail you have to keep in your head when planning a photo shooting. I might get a second, wired, remote control which would not have these disadvantages and keep the small one for on the road purposes or when I am to far away from the camera or when the wire would appear in the finished pic. There is a nifty setting though on my K-x that shoots the picture 3 seconds after pushing the remote control, giving you the time to move your hand to a natural position when taking self-pictures.

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