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Last night, my brother and I discovered that we have a rodent problem. Either very large mice or very small rats, we can't quite tell. I've called the exterminators I have a contract with, but they're closed on Sundays, so I won't be able to talk to them until tomorrow. I seriously did NOT need to be dealing with this shit right now.

And of course this is on top of being in no small amount of pain today, owing to a) sinuses that won't leave me the fuck alone and b) sore muscles from the somewhat acrobatic photography class I took yesterday (Studio Lighting, in case anyone is interested--and yes, photography can be a serious workout, especially when it involves kneeling and crouching for extended periods, climbing ladders and furniture, holding stock still for minutes at a time to make sure the camera doesn't shake, and moving props and furniture and lighting equipment around multiple times).

I'm supposed to be at a game in a half hour, but I'm really not sure I'm up to going.


( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 3rd, 2013 06:52 pm (UTC)
I always considered that the most strenuous part of photography was setting up the reflectors, the floods (where needed), and the backdrops. I never had a problem with camera shaking - but then, with enough light I didn't have to worry about long exposures as much. Of course, this was in the day of film, so I could also use fairly high ASA rated film.

I never mastered the art of holding the camera free well enough to take pictures with a longer exposure than about a thirtieth of a second without resting the camera against either a unipod or a suitable doorframe/post. But then, that's what unipods were for (or tripods, if you really wanted to be "clean" about it). Of course, this was also not doing figure photography (I learned most things photographic from my father, who was an industrial advertising photographer -- I miss his old studio).
Nov. 3rd, 2013 07:00 pm (UTC)
Re: Photography...
Yeah, when I first started doing photography seriously (in my early college days), I pretty much went straight into figure photography, so I've been doing it for about 25 years now. I loved working in film, and I was VERY late to the digital photography party (didn't buy my first digital SLR until 2009).

Making artistic images of humans means not only posing the subject but getting oneself into unusual positions to get good angles and framing. And, of course, setting up the lights, backdrops, props, sets, etc. I didn't do a whole *lot* of that yesterday (it was a class, so the instructor did most of it), but I was definitely doing a lot of moving around and standing in odd positions.
Nov. 3rd, 2013 09:59 pm (UTC)
Re: Photography...
I never got in to figure photography - the problem I saw was in getting the right model. A painter can pick the torso of one model, the legs of another, and the face of a third (in effect), but modulo Photoshop, a photographer is stuck with a single body.

Of course, it's also bloody HARDER in my experience to get a good figure shot, even if the model is near perfect. (Ok, so I went in for landscapes and set pieces like the sort of thing that you do in industrial advertising - funny about that :-)).
Nov. 4th, 2013 01:50 am (UTC)
Re: Photography...
See, it's just the opposite for me. I learned photography by taking photos of people and studying photos of people, so figure photography comes naturally to me. Landscapes and industrial photography are kinda baffling to me. ;-) We each have our strengths and weaknesses.
Nov. 3rd, 2013 08:31 pm (UTC)
"Very agile; can squeeze through openings only 1/2-inch wide."
"The first step in controlling a roof rat infestation is to *properly identify* the rodents [my emphasis]. Roof rats have hairless, scaly tails that are longer than their heads and bodies. These rats are nocturnal and are excellent climbers.

To prevent a colony from nesting in your home, make sure that all the windows and vents are screened. Roof rats can also enter openings in walls, eaves and roof from the branches of trees. Trim all tree branches to further prevent entry."

Edited at 2013-11-03 08:31 pm (UTC)
Nov. 3rd, 2013 08:55 pm (UTC)
No, definitely not one of those. Wrong shape. Possibly a Norway rat, more likely a deer mouse.
Nov. 3rd, 2013 09:05 pm (UTC)
I think Norways would be much larger. Deermice have white feet & a furred tail, are buff [tan], not black or grey, IIRC from mammalogy. Can also get into small spaces, maybe <1/2".
Nov. 3rd, 2013 09:07 pm (UTC)
Dunno. The exterminators will be able to tell, I'm pretty sure. We're not cleaning up any of the evidence.
Nov. 6th, 2013 02:56 pm (UTC)
I hope the exterminators can solve the problem very quickly. Rodents gnaw on wires, so you're at more risk for fire, computer failure, etc., as well as at a risk for having dead rodents lying around.

I try to think of mice and rats as mammalian roaches, but gosh, they're cute.

Edited to add: I forgot to say the thing that prompted me to write, which is that I hope your sinuses have let up with the change of weather. :)

Oh, yeah, one more thing: I find photography very strenuous work. As I am in far worse shape than you are, physically, it's rough. I wish I had the time to pursue it, as well as a "real" camera, not a point-and-shoot. But still, one can take a decent picture with a point-and-shoot.

Edited at 2013-11-06 03:01 pm (UTC)
Nov. 6th, 2013 05:15 pm (UTC)
I used to have sympathy for the family Rodentia, but NO MORE! You would NOT believe the sheer quantity of mouse poop I and my brother had to clean up yesterday. I used two pair of rubber gloves, and threw both of them out after we were done. BLEAGGGHH!

(Oh, and yes, the exterminator confirmed that it was most likely mice and not rats. He said it was possible that it could be a teenaged rat, but he didn't think it likely.)

My sinuses are better, thanks. But I think I still need to get the minor quasi-surgical procedure done. It's called "sinoplasty", and it's based on the same principle as angioplasty: use a small balloon to expand the sinus openings so that they don't seal themselves off so easily. It's an outpatient procedure and has a high positive outcome rate, so I'm hopeful.

I know you're really busy right now, but if you want to come with me on a shoot, just ask. Point-and-shoot cameras these days are nothing to sneeze at. I entered a contest a while back where a requirement was that any image submitted could not have been taken on a DSLR—compact point-and-shoot cameras only! But had I not known that that was a requirement, I would not have been able to tell by the entries. So if you want to practice your photography chops with some live subjects, let me know.
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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