What Happened on August 19

by | May 21, 2022 | Perspective, Stories & Expeditions | 0 comments

Julianna and I have a date set for our wedding, now! It will be August 19, 2022. It will be an important date in our minds forever!

But, has it always been? No. I’ve walked around on many an August 19 oblivious to the fact that it would ever be an important date to me.

So, it made me wonder! What have I been doing on previous August 19s?!

Well, here’s what my portfolio revealed!

Surprisingly, out of 16 years of pretty steady picture-taking, I was only taking pictures on August 19 on five of those years!

2008

The last night we were at the VanEssens, we went to a local park and fellowshiped with some families they knew in the area. We played a little bit of frizbee, had dinner putluck, and then some serious baseball insued! It was a lot of fun. Even to capture with the camera.

Wait. Is that really me? I didn’t see that one coming! Open-mouthed smile Mr. VanEssen back there seems to be enjoying my incredible batting skills. Smile

This was probably the best day of all the ones we experienced in Ontario. Just a few miles away from the VanEssens house is a small Park. We went to it and spent almost all day there. We took a 5km hike around a lake. It was actually very rugged, taking quite a long time to get out to the lake and then climbing a few hills from which we had a good vantage point of the clear, simmering lake.

Earlier in the day, our hosts on that family vacation to Ontario, Canada, took us to Petroglyphs Providential Park to do some hiking and exploring. It was really pretty! But those were the days when I didn’t know the amazingness of backlight in portraiture. Smile

And as always, I took pictures of every random thing I thought was interesting. That’s what budding photographers do, right?!

This was probably the best day of all the ones we experienced in Ontario. Just a few miles away from the VanEssens house is a small Park. We went to it and spent almost all day there. We took a 5km hike around a lake. It was actually very rugged, taking quite a long time to get out to the lake and then climbing a few hills from which we had a good vantage point of the clear, simmering lake.

This was probably the best day of all the ones we experienced in Ontario. Just a few miles away from the VanEssens house is a small Park. We went to it and spent almost all day there. We took a 5km hike around a lake. It was actually very rugged, taking quite a long time to get out to the lake and then climbing a few hills from which we had a good vantage point of the clear, simmering lake.

This was probably the best day of all the ones we experienced in Ontario. Just a few miles away from the VanEssens house is a small Park. We went to it and spent almost all day there. We took a 5km hike around a lake. It was actually very rugged, taking quite a long time to get out to the lake and then climbing a few hills from which we had a good vantage point of the clear, simmering lake.

This was probably the best day of all the ones we experienced in Ontario. Just a few miles away from the VanEssens house is a small Park. We went to it and spent almost all day there. We took a 5km hike around a lake. It was actually very rugged, taking quite a long time to get out to the lake and then climbing a few hills from which we had a good vantage point of the clear, simmering lake.

2011

I do not shoot at FEW Conferences as much as I used to simply because there is not much new stuff to take pictures of. Plus the auditorium was not very good for bounce flash, even with the 580EX. And then, during activity time, I was in charge of one of the games so I couldn't take pictures outside. The best time to take pictures was at the Wilkes Barn, but then, I had so much fun fellowshiping that I hardly remembered to take any pictures! The best part of the conference was talking to people (Father's especially) about anything from calendars and photography to missiles and courtship. :)

In 2011, August 19 found myself on a battlefield in Virginia! My best friend, Matthew, was big into Civil War history, and he was leading a group around telling us all about this really exciting battle called…uh, you know, I forget what battle it was. Smile But it sure was interesting because it was Matthew talking about it!

I do not shoot at FEW Conferences as much as I used to simply because there is not much new stuff to take pictures of. Plus the auditorium was not very good for bounce flash, even with the 580EX. And then, during activity time, I was in charge of one of the games so I couldn't take pictures outside. The best time to take pictures was at the Wilkes Barn, but then, I had so much fun fellowshiping that I hardly remembered to take any pictures! The best part of the conference was talking to people (Father's especially) about anything from calendars and photography to missiles and courtship. :)

We saw a hawk.

I do not shoot at FEW Conferences as much as I used to simply because there is not much new stuff to take pictures of. Plus the auditorium was not very good for bounce flash, even with the 580EX. And then, during activity time, I was in charge of one of the games so I couldn't take pictures outside. The best time to take pictures was at the Wilkes Barn, but then, I had so much fun fellowshiping that I hardly remembered to take any pictures! The best part of the conference was talking to people (Father's especially) about anything from calendars and photography to missiles and courtship. :)

And we saw a lot of grass.

Battle fields haven’t ever really been my favorite. Smile

2012

I had my camera out again on August 19 the next year. Or at least, that’s the information that my portfolio is telling me.

120819_James Staddon_5638 Canon EOS 40D, 17 mm, 1-200 sec at f - 8.0, ISO 200

The camera metadata says that I was attending my cousin Tim’s wedding that day. But last night, when I told Tim about the upcoming J&J wedding date, his congratulatory reply was, “One day after our anniversary!” I think I’ll believe him before I believe my portfolio. Maybe I had just gotten back from a trip around the world and my camera date/time info was off by one day? That would be more likely than Tim forgetting what he and his wife’s anniversary is. Smile

120819_James Staddon_5801 Canon EOS 40D, 18 mm, 1-125 sec at f - 5.6, ISO 100

Anyway, they got married on the Lehigh University Campus and I had fun just walking around taking pictures between the ceremony and the reception.

I remember stopping to talk with a random guy who was walking on campus too (a student maybe?). I was needing a portrait of myself for some project, so I think I asked him if he wouldn’t mind taking a picture of me with my camera.

120819_James Staddon_5789 Canon EOS 40D, 21 mm, 1-50 sec at f - 3.5, ISO 100

I had him take another one. Smile

120819_James Staddon_5793 Canon EOS 40D, 35 mm, 1-40 sec at f - 3.2, ISO 100

2014

140819_James Staddon_0422 Canon EOS 5D Mark II, 31 mm, 1-160 sec at f - 11, ISO 200

Ah, I could write volumes about the August 19 in 2014!

140819_James Staddon_0399 Canon EOS 5D Mark II, 17 mm, 1-13 sec at f - 22, ISO 200

The CAPTURE Alaska photography workshop. That’s the day we hiked up into what is known as Hanging Valley, in Chugatch State Park.

140819_James Staddon_0408 Canon EOS 5D Mark II, 17 mm, 1-100 sec at f - 8.0, ISO 400

I’ll let the pictures do the talking. It’s hard not to forget a day spent doing landscape photography in Alaska.

140819_James Staddon_0376 Canon EOS 5D Mark II, 22 mm, 0.4 sec at f - 16, ISO 100

2017

170819_James Staddon_0716 Canon EOS 7D Mark II, 24 mm, 1-250 sec at f - 4.0, ISO 100

2017 was the year of the great solar eclipse. One of the best places near me to see it was in North Carolina. So I drove down with the Parfitt family to photograph it! We happened to drive down on August 19, and were scooting through southern West Virginia in the middle of the day. You can’t just cross the New River Gorge Bridge with people who have never seen it without stopping to see it. So, we stopped and saw it! Being in the middle of the day, I didn’t take many pictures of it. The black and white version I think looks best. But here’s the color version for comparison. Which do you like better?

170819_James Staddon_0716 Canon EOS 7D Mark II, 24 mm, 1-250 sec at f - 4.0, ISO 100-2

And like I had for the previous 9 years, I took pictures of the random things that were around me! Smile

170819_James Staddon_0719 Canon EOS 7D Mark II, 50 mm, 1-30 sec at f - 4.0, ISO 100


One of these days, Jesus is going to return. He’s coming for his bride! And it’s going to be the best day ever! It will be an important date that we will never forget. What if it were tomorrow, May 22? We would have walked around on many a May 22 totally oblivious to the fact that it would forever be the most out-of-this-world incredible date in history! What are you going to see in the slideshow of May 22s in your life? And more importantly, what will God see? I read II Peter 3:10 and 14 the other day, “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.

What will God see in the portfolios of our lives? Let us live today as though we knew it would be scrutinized down to our very smallest thoughts and intentions!

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