Friday, September 17, 2010

Guest Blog: John Linton - Confessions of a Failed Boy Scout: Or Wedding Photo Faux Pas, Partie Deux (I think that’s “Party Dudes!” in French)

Self-portrait. Image by John Linton
People come into our lives through all sorts of means.  I've lost track of how long ago I first started to see John's images and comment or when it was I first started to look forward to reading John's comments about images I had posted to jpgmag or RedBubble, but know this: John's comments are legendary, nearly as much as his images.  Anyone who has had a "prop" or "comment" made by John remembers them for two reasons: his wit and his insight. It is with much pleasure then that this week's guest blog post should be authored by John. The story, self portrait, and collages just knocked me out.

Bio: John Linton spent his childhood developing his skills as a military brat while the family moved from one place to another. He attended Gorham State College to avoid the draft and somehow graduated with a teaching degree. He was hired by the Westerly School Department in 1970 and has lived in Westerly, RI ever since. He retired in 2002, much to the relief of the administration. When people ask him what he does he loves to tell them “Nothing.” He does dabble in photography every now and then.

Contact Information: John's sites on JPGMAG,

Confessions of a Failed Boy Scout: Or Wedding Photo Faux Pas, Partie Deux (I think that’s “Party Dudes!” in French)

Once upon a time I had a brief stint as a Boy Scout, just long enough to learn that I was always supposed to be prepared, but apparently not long enough to actually have that idea sink in. So, it shouldn’t have surprised anyone that I showed up to the wedding with my Canon DSLR in such sad shape that the flash refused to work. Nor should it surprise anyone that the Sony point and click that I brought along just in case my Canon might be having “issues” didn’t work either. It’s kind of hard to get a camera to work when you leave the battery still in the charger back at the hotel. It looked like I was going to once again have a love affair with blur and grain.

I was just taking photos for fun so it wasn’t like I was actually worried about any of this. You see, I took up photography because: a) I finally figured out that if I carried the camera I wouldn’t have to worry about having my picture taken, b) when I went to weddings and such I wouldn’t have to actually sit through services and receptions because having a DSLR with a larger than normal lens gave people the idea that it was OK for me to circulate around clicking left and right, and c) when I was traveling it gave me something to do besides listen to tour guides.

This particular occasion was a Full Mass wedding. I’m not Catholic, but Full Mass sounded far longer than my normal two-minute attention span usually permits me to stay seated. Imagine the smile I had on my face when someone at the church said there would be no problem taking a few photos during the service. I wandered all over the place as the wedding morphed into communion, spending just enough time in the balcony to miss out on all the standing, sitting, and the whole body of Christ thing.

I was still having my problems with blur and grain at the reception and they became more pronounced with every beer I consumed. I’m not sure it’s a good thing to try and take photographs at a function that has an open bar.

Anyway, I’ve put together two four-photo collages of my latest Wedding Photo Faux Pas for your perusal. I hope you enjoy them.

The Wedding. Image Collage by John Linton.
The Reception. Image Collage by John Linton.

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