Thursday, November 5, 2009

Man's Race

It is amazing to see how far we have come, especially when it comes to technology, and how we, as humans, are once again trying to contain and rope in mother nature, harnessing her for all she is worth. This time around I can only hope we succeed ...Captured outside of Boulder, Colorado

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Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Colors

The Colors of a Colorado Autumn....
How I wish that everyday could be like this, colorful, vibrant, and even though at times the weather might be cold, the leaves still seem to shimmer with the brilliance and warmth that they do on a sunny day. I don't know why, but maybe that is why I prefer shooting on cloudy days in Autumn, when there is a slight chill in the air, the smell of rain and woodsmoke, and those trees....the Aspen, the Willows....Every year I look forward to Autumn more than any other time of the year for photography, it just has a certain romance about it, something which any other season doesn't have. The sound of the Elk bugling and the golden leaves on the rocks by a I wish it only lasted longer.

Shots below captured at The Brainard Lake Recreation Area in the Roosevelt National Forest in rural Boulder County outside the small town of Ward.

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Saturday, September 26, 2009

Recent Images & The Changing Season

It is Fall in Colorado.
It is hard to describe what this time of the year does to me, but it has a profound effect on my photography and my creative soul. Everything in the Rockies is bathed in the soft glow of Autumn Golds...the Elk stand and bugle along the lake front of Lake Estes as the fog lifts...if nature is soothing to the heart, body, mind, and soul, then this time of the year is it.

It is also my busiest time of the year for photography, the time of the year which I look most forward to. For me as a photographer, this time of the year is very special, it isn't so much about photography but also the ability to just be where I am, witnessing it all, feeling it, breathing it, clicking the shutter to record it. I wonder how many others feel the same way about Autumn as I do?

The last almost 2 weeks have seen me going all over the Northern Rockies of Colorado, up to some God-forsaken Jeep trails, where I bounced around so hard inside, I think I received a concussion, to seeing an entire herd of Moose around Lke Brainard amongst the Autumn foliage while the snow was falling hard, to witnessing Bull Elk bugle and fight in the snow and sleet of Rocky Mountain National Park.

Next weekend it all start to pretty much wind down, and with a little luck, maybe I will still finally get to the San Juans or The Bloods for some color, we'll see. I will say this much, I have never shot as many photos as I have recently, and I have been very lucky to see the things which I have seen. As the saying/song goes "If God doesn't live in Colorado, I bet he spends most of his time there". You know what, I tend to agree!

Below are some of the recent shots which I have taken, hope ya all enjoy them.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Social Media and the circus act that ensues with artist's

I have to admit that I for one am a BIG fan of Social Media and how artists such as myself, can use it to ones full advantage, I actively promote my work on sites like Twitter and Facebook  and have had quite a few nice opportunities come my way because of it. I think Jim Goldstein probably wrote about it best with the article he did over on his blog "Why Social Media Matters to Photographers" 

However there is another side to the coin with this, and one that I am currently fighting pretty hard. Yeah, I know, some of you are getting sick of hearing about all the drama on deviantART with regards to the "Share" feature, who are members of DA, but I really want to pose a few open thoughts about this.

I am quite astounded that many consider posting a hyperlink to a social networking site that links to a persons photograph, to something along the lines of a entry level drug with art theft. "This would help art thieves in stealing my work" is one of the cries often heard. Another is "I want control over my images", and yet another is "I only want people on DA to see my work". It is that last one that gets me. And I mean really gets me. (Conspiracy theories aside how DA is making money somehow with being in business with Twitter and Facebook) I am unable to understand why people would want only DA members to see their own work, it speaks of sheer fear mongering, thinking that the whole world outside of DA is suddenly evil, and bad thinsg can happen, meanwhile DA itself is a community of 12 million plus. Call me confused, but I firmly believe that if you are having regrets over a possible employer seeing your naked nude self portriat of yourself, then you should be using common sense in knowing that your image is already spread all over Google and you shouldn't be posting it anyhow to begin with.

I think what is needed is an education campaign. I don't believe that DA should give in to fear mongering with suddenly making parts of the site what is akin to being behind the Great Wall of China. This honestly bothers me that a blocking feature would be getting thought about, as was evidence over on #HQ Blog with "Update on Share Links from deviantART"

No other art community or art orientated website has had users crying foul with something that is now, these days, basically commonplace. Zenfolio did it, people cheered. Artician did it, people cheered. DA did it and some came absolutely unglued. Some obviously have an axe to grind however.

I balltle this because, well, honestly, I not only believe in the system and how it relates to social media and artists, but because well....I actively promote peoples work whom I admire. Not only on DA but also on sites like FB and twitter. I try to showcase some of the very best images from people on DA whom I "watch", it also not only helps me promote their work but also promote the nature photography community as a whole, and lets me ring the bell proudly about it. I knwo for a fact that some have joined DA just because of the links which I have posted on twitter to deviants galleries. But.....I feel odd.

Yes, I feel odd, very odd, because now, it calls in a whole other issue. Is it fair that I feature peoples work now in my journals who don't want their work shared? Is it fair that I fav and add peoples work to my collections who no longer want thir images seen outside of deviantART? Knowing that I promote these journals, collections, and favorites outside of deviantART on Facebook & Twitter? It leaves me in a quandary about it, honestly, and I call the question of fairness into the equation as it refers to other artists and how they want their work seen. What a strange paradox.

Gee, I wonder if people know that their journals have built in RSS feeds as it is? Chances are most haven't any idea at all. And thereis no chance I am even going to mention that fact, otherwise more will just ensue.

Enjoy some of the recent shots I have taken below. It has been a LONG while since I did any floral work. To long.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Boreas Pass, Guanella Pass, & Como Ghost Town

More of my shots from my recent photo shoot can be seen on my website in the gallery Boreas & Guanella Pass 7-24-2009 if you would like to see more than what I have posted below.

This past Friday evening I had the chance to venture out with my shooting buddy John (his work can be seen at Glitch-Chaos on deviantART ) and headed for some late day and evening shooting up at Guanella & Boreas Pass here in Colorado. I figured seeing as how we would be driving through the Ghost Town of Como to get to Boreas, it would also some great shots as well.

It is wildflower season in the high country right now, and we wouldn't be disappointed! The waterfalls and creeks were flowing heavily and made for some wonderful shots. Around the Guanella area, these are a sort of highlight for me... Guanella Pass sits at almost 12,000 feet high and runs between Georgetown and is easily passable in any car with parts being paved. At the summit of the pass, trails lead to Mt. Bierstadt (el. 14,060 ft./4285 m.) Shooting here is a really worth your wild experience, and late day light is very dramatic....and lead to some pretty sensational photographs. So without any delay, here are a few shots from Guanella Pass...

The Ghost Town of Como Colorado

While some may not consider it a Ghost Town in the traditional sense, I sure as heck do! There are still a handful of people who live there, but honestly, there are more empty buildings than there are people....and it makes for some GREAT shooting! Even the original outhouses still stand from the is like stepping in to a time warp....where time just simply stands still,.....a glimpse at how life was back in the wild west.

From the Wikipedia article on Como, Colorado:

Como is an unincorporated town and a U.S. Post Office in Park County, Colorado, United States. The Como Post Office has the ZIP Code 80432.[2]

Located at the northern end of South Park, the town is a historic mining settlement founded during the Pike's Peak Gold Rush in 1859. It sits approximately one-half mile (1 km) north of U.S. Route 285, approximately 9 miles (15 km) northeast of Fairplay. It is accessible by an unpaved county road off Highway 285 leading northwest over Boreas Pass (to Breckenridge) in the Front Range. The mountains northwest of town form a dramatic background to the town site, which sits on the flank of Little Baldy Mountain. The town was named by prospectors and miners from Como, Italy who came to work the gold fields of the area.

In 1879 the town became the location of a roundhouse of the Denver, South Park and Pacific Railroad, which was extended over Kenosha Pass to reach the silver mining areas during the Colorado Silver Boom. The roundhouse served as a junction for trains going northward over Boreas Pass and southward toward Fairplay and over Trout Creek Pass at the western end of South Park. The town has many historic weathered structures, including the roundhouse, and has the air of a ghost town that is still nevertheless populated, by 500 people. It has a small commercial district just off the main county road consisting of a post office and general store. The roundhouse is currently under renovation with intention of turning it into a principal tourist attraction in the area.

What it doesn't tell you is all the people who died here, there was a mine collapse that claimed more than 25 peoples lives....there was also a massacre of Chinese mine workers in Como, in which it is estimated 100s died...due to the Italians and Irish at the time, disputing how the Chinese were paid lower wages and feared losing their jobs because of it.

But as I said it offered many photo-opps! Here are some below:

Boreas Pass, Colorado

Honestly this is one of my favorite places to shoot at, there is just a real lack of people up here and noise, it is almost eerie, like you are the last human on the face of the Earth. It starts at Como and comes into the backside of Breckenridge, and has some utterly amazing views along the way. It is a great trip to make, and the wildflowers are just amazing.

We arrived here at Golden Hour and went to town, stopping often to catch the dramatic light as it bounced off the rain clouds, with teh sunlight filtering through, it made for unreal conditions to shoot in. It was quite challenging at times actually, with trying to shoot with my tripod with a bum knee, and at times I just hand hold the shots, but I was able to get some pretty amazing shots off thanks to in body anti-shake in my Minolta!

The wildflowers just littered the road up here, they are literally just everywhere, and the scent they produce along with the smell of the rain, is nothing short of absolutely heavenly! It really is something out of a film, or movie, that you experience. So journey with me on this adventure to Boreas Pass!

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Monday, July 27, 2009

The Inner Battle Among Photographers

Before I write this, I want you to all know where I am coming from. I am a Gallery Moderator on deviantART for Photography-Animals, Plants, & Nature (think basically, Nature Photography) I interact with literally thousands upon thousands of people, sometimes on a daily basis. And it is with that interaction that I started to notice a few things amongst my fellow photographers.

It almost seems there are 2 camps within nature photography, these who believe in capturing the image exactly as you saw it, and those who get a little creative with their images...maybe doing subtle HDR work, de-saturating images, and so forth. Oddly I have found it is the later, the creative camp, who is more likely to do B&W work, but anyways....

What I have come to notice is a BIG chip on the shoulder coming from the the "The eye crowd" as I call them, towards their creative brethren... and it often gets pretty heated. It kind of leaves me scratching me head honestly, wondering why so many feel this way, feeling the need to outright openly and attack others because they feel an image is wrong....I kind of wonder where the respect has gone.

Is it possible to even have a "right" or a "wrong" within a creative medium? I am not to sure of that. No 2 photographers are going to capture things the exact same way, and who cares if one shot has more post work than the other, in all honesty. I think without question, we all view things the same way when we take the shot, regardless if one photographer decides to go with a B&W and the other one replicating the scene the best as they can to the human eye....we are all photographers....

So what is causing these attacks and general disdain? That is what I would like to know myself. Now I don't mean to be offensive here, but honestly, there are a million and 1 cookie cutter waterscape shots that all look the same, long exposure, at sunrise/sunset, etc. And often, oddly, these folks attacking the more creative ones, their shots all look a lot alike. I honestly to God can not tell who shot that a slam? I don't think so as much as it is an observance of a possible pattern. I honestly like their work, but at times, I can't tell who shot what...

Myself, I think I ride the fence a lot between the two camps, sometimes I take shots with a more creative workflow in mind, other times, I capture it as realistically as I can...needless to say, some of the comments I receive are well...."interesting", I will say that. That being said though, I have worked long and hard at developing my own style, and maybe that is what needs to happen....I remember an old quote that goes something like "People put down what they don't understand"....I guess those words really ring true, especially these days with what I have seen.

Anyways, here are a couple shots from this past Friday evening that I took up on Guanella Pass & Boreas Pass here in Colorado...stay tuned for a formal blog post about that, in the days to come!


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Monday, June 29, 2009

Christmas In July Print Sale!

Get 'em while they are hot!--- I have decided to go
ahead and try something new, doing a prints sale of my work, on my own!
I am offering 12"x18" prints signed by me (unless of course you would
like it unsigned) for $25 plus FREE shipping in the USA. They are
printed on Fuji Crystal Archive Paper and done on a Noritsu 3111
printer, in both Lustre and Glossy papers. I can accept payments via
PayPal, so if you are interested, just note me! It is never to early to
shop for the upcoming holidays and they look great hanging on a office
wall! Swing by my website and check out what I all have to offer! and sign the guestbook and say "howdy!"


Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The Rudeness Amongst Artist's

I am not sure if it has been a full moon since, oh I don't know, the 19th we'll say of this month of June or what, but what in the heck is in the air lately? One thing I have never understood is the rudeness among artists....not just fellow photographers but artists in general. For those of you who don't know, I am a Gallery Moderator on deviantART for Photography>Animals, Plants & Nature. Some of the things I have seen have just been downright disturbing, from someone saying that "maybe if you had a REAL camera and not a camera phone....." (said image was shot on a Bronica!!!) to someone telling a photographer to stop saying something in their replies to people on their very own photography, not just telling, but demanding, all the way to someone slamming another Gallery Moderator because she is French and therefor is a elitist. On and on, it goes on.....

This isn't just limited to deviantART however, I have seen the same kinda of things just about everywhere else BUT and I am not sure why people simply can't be more respectable to others, especially their fellow artists and why it seems many have a hard time figuring out that not everyone is going to like everything. It is a given, and as the saying goes, "You can please some of the people some of the time, but not all of the people all of the time" Amen to that. If you see something you don't like on the TV to you continue watching it? No, you change the channel. The same can be said for an image you don't like, if you see one you don't like, move on to a different one. Don't slam the artist. Respect the artist. Putting something down is usually caused by not understanding something.

I guess I have just been amazed lately by what I have seen lately....we are all artists, we all have passion in everything we do....I may not like Lowrider cars very much I sure as hell respect the time and effort these guys put into their rides. They are as much as part of the car world as Hotrods are. Appreciation and respect....seems many need a lesson on what is all about. Just because this is the internet doesn't give you a right to slam someone on their work. Trying to understand and trying to appreciate does wonders folks.....

Anyways, here are a few more recent shots that I have recently taken....

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Friday, May 29, 2009

The Musings Of A Photographer

The disgruntled upgrade path of a photographer---- Honestly Sony, wtf are you doing?!?!?! I don't know what exactly I am going to do now, but I think my plan is this; to go with what is now an "older Alpha", probably a200, a300, a350, and just wait and see. The newly released Alpha's have me more than disappointed, honestly. They lack features, features which I use in my everyday photography, and are clearly aimed at what I can only describe at Soccer Mom's. In fact, someone on the dpreview Sony dslr forum made the comment "The girlfriend dslr has officially landed!", while someone else said "Wife Camera 101 debuts!" (Seriously who the hell thought of a PINK lcd screen on the camera? WTF!?!?!?) You can watch the youtube review of 2 of the 3 new dslr's here I like how the Sony rep states "The a200's successor", ya, sure, lol It is dummied down for geeze sakes!

So here I sit, debating about all this, and wondering what exactly Sony is doing. I am going to have to sell my current dslr and a couple lenses (now ya all know WHY I bought 3 lenses from Ritz) to buy my new body eventually, which will happen in a few months. Sure, an a900 would be nice, is it realistic? No. Especially NOW considering all this and the fact that my money would be better spent in other real life issues. So I have come to a conclusion. I may just buy a cheap used a200 for now, and play the wait and see game, for a few. I am honestly very disappointed in these new cameras Sony has come out with, these are very beginner cameras, more so than any other out there and make a d40 look like a pro level camera.

If I don't like what I see, well, my only hope then is that Fuji releases the s6 Pro. Otherwise, I may just hop into a s5 Pro. Other than that, Pentax I have always liked, a lot, and Bestbuy has the Nikon d200 on closeout for $599.

How bad is bad? Look at this post on dpreview:

"Sony entry level DSLR's - redefining the term Upgrade

A100 had MLU, DOF preview, AEL button and SSS switch
A200 only had the AEL button and SSS switch
A230 has none."

The A200 was 70 gram lighter than the A100 and most people who handled both agree that build quality seemed to be worse with the A200. The A230 is 150 gram lighter, so I wouldn't be surprised if it feels like a cheap toy. To make matters worse, its framerate is now lower too (2.5fps vs. 3.0fps in the A100 and A200).

Does anyone want to guess what will go next? For the A260 I bet Sony is considering to drop PASM and RAW. After all, who need those?

I hate this crap. Minolta, where art thou? Please come back and save us, we dearly miss you more than we can say.....

Hey Photo Forums? Guess what? It's 2009! Wake up!--- You know what I can't stand, and is a serious pet peeve of mine? Photography Forum sites that only allow 700px-800px photographs on the longest side is what I can't stand. It is 2009, wake up! This usually equates to people posting photos from their flickr site that are like 400px in size. Seriously. How the hell is anyone supposed to see ANYTHING at a resolution of 400px? It's 2009, 24" monitors are the norm this day and age. If you didn't know, your ass better call somebody! I didn't join 4 forums because of this rule, the 2 exceptions is and which only allows 700px on the longest, because, well, the info one gains there is next to invaluable.

Shutterstock CEO--CSR Skills Much? FAIL!--- Seriously, want to see how NOT to talk to your contributor base? This is ridicules and shows not only complete lack of respect but arrogance as well.

A little history first---The IRS is for some reason withholding taxes of international contributors on Shutterstock, even though they are not citizens and pay NO US tax. They have a right to be pissed, I would be too. There has been a massive outcry and well, there should be, as well. (Last I heard, wasn't America essentially founded on the catchphrase "No taxation without representation"? So do they get to vote in our elections then?) Check this out on the Shutterstock forums

Here is the post on how the CEO of Shutterstock responded to the community (not the way to address your clients mind you IMO. BAD customer service defined!)

Witholding Tax Issue - Calm down.


1) This is a US government regulation. What would you like us to do about it? Go to jail? Go out of business? We are sorry - but we can’t just move the company out of the US or creating another company somewhere else to pay you. That is called tax evasion. These are laws. We can’t change the laws. We have 60 employees in NYC - they aren’t going anywhere.

2) If you follow the rules you won’t be double taxed. Your country has rules that we follow every day also. You may need to do a bit of work here, but we will help you out with them. You will have a chance to get your ITIN before we start following regulations and witholding.

3) If you don’t want to deal with this, then leave. We are happy to remove all your images for you. If I continue to read threads on the forum that you will be taking your images elsewhere, I will delete them myself and close your account. I’ve done it a few times already- I am not kidding about this.

4) Online petition claiming we are taxing you? Why would we be taxing you? Again, this is the US government. We are just following the law.

5) Want to change your avatar to something obnoxious? Again, I will personally delete your profile, images, etc. You are just creating more work for us.

6) If you think other microstock companies are except from paying tax, think again. It’s a matter of time before they start following the law also.

7) Why don’t US citizens have to deal with this? Because we already have their W9 forms. Don’t worry - they dealt with it also.

8) Welcome to doing business internationally. We will all make money together - but we have to follow the rules.

9) We will answer every single question you have - but you have to give us time to get to them.

Jon Oringer
Shutterstock Images LLC

Captured this past Sunday at Mount Evans Wilderness here in Colorado, Bristlecone Pines are the oldest living on the planet, it is amazing to think that some of these trees are literally thousands of years old, imagine the stories that they could tell if they could speak! To see more of my images, click the photo which will take you to the gallery on my website with the photos from my trip!Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Monday, May 25, 2009


I have this obsession with images of nature and images of a rural setting, and when they come together it just always seems like such harmony is being created.

Captured yesterday outside of the Mount Evans Wilderness area here in Colorado, by the Chicago Creek Camping area, I am not sure I can find all the words to put this shot into perspective but I will try my best.

One of the great things about Colorado is exploring, it seems down every road that you have never traveled on, something photographic is always there within seconds, and this was one of those places, I have always wanted to explore this area some but just never really have, maybe it's fact I have always thought it was a rough dirt road, but while it is a dirt country road, it wasn't rough. The creek and river flowed right next to the road with old beautiful country cabins dotting the landscape next to it, when I saw this sitting in the yard of one, covered by wildflowers. I actually almost missed the scene completely, but luckily I JUST saw it. I didn't have the lens on really I wanted, as I had my Tamron 200-400mm on my camera at the time, but decided what the heck, and had at it.

It is hard to describe the sounds I heard when I was shooting this, but let's just say that between the constant buzzing of Hummingbird's, the soft roar of the river, and the very strong scent of wildflowers mixed with the incoming rain, THIS was SERENITY defined! Not a sound of man anywhere, nothing, nada.

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Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Something To Ponder

Some of you may recall the recent journal I wrote titled "Ponder This" and this Tuesday morning, while reading my Twitter stream, once again, I saw a post that made me think and kind of made me take notice, you can say.

This one comes from danielwharmby (Daniel Wharmby, a California based professional editorial photographer some of you may know, his website is here and if you aren't following him on twitter, you should be! Like NOW!) What he posted just made sense. Pure sense;

--My instructors used to say "There's no point going around the world if you can't tell a story in your back yard."

Now how true is THAT!? How often do we sit around dreaming of being able to go and shoot somewhere exotic, while often we don't realize the incredible locations we have at our very own dispose. I know often I do. There are a billion locations here in Colorado that I still want to shoot, and haven't yet. Heck, it was only a couple years ago that I discovered one of my favorite gems to shoot, South Valley Park, which is tucked away in a subdivision here in metro Denver of all places. It is one of the best kept little secrets around, and is like a mini Garden Of The Gods kind of place.

How often do you guys get out and actually explore where it is you live and shoot? Have you ever checked your local parks and lakes? You might be quite shocked, I know I certainly have been several times.

Often it seems that paradise is close by, but rarely we see it. However when you open your eyes and starting to take notice, you start to notice the very things which are around you! And believe me, beauty isn't always that far away!

South Valley Park, Colorado....a little local gem of a location almost in my backyard

Monday, May 18, 2009



I wonder what one is to do when they become disenfranchised with their camera maker?

Minolta, where are thou? You were such a great legend, a great maker, an icon in the photography world....come back, for I miss you, I miss the days of affordable lenses, true dedication, and cameras that actually advanced the future.

These new cameras that just came out that has your mount, is not what I have known nor loved the last almost 20 years. A chocolate and copper colored DSLR? I did not get myself into a whole new definition of the word "Fashion Photography" by purchasing your cameras.

I don't want to switch systems, I just want my Minolta back, where the motto "Now you don't have to buy expensive lenses to have them stabilized" was a sales cry. Instead, we now have 70-200mm f2.8 lenses that cost more than a Canon IS lens of the same focal length.

Please come back Minolta, many of us miss you....terribly.....

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Monday, April 27, 2009

A Snowy & Surreal Monday

I wake up, put the coffee on, let the dog on, and what do I see out my front window? This below! You know, sometimes you just know when it's going to be an interesting day...and it seems this could be one of them! Naturally I went for the camera fast as I could!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Of Days Gone Past....

The Vintage Retro Signage of Denver's East Colfax Avenue

I am still working on processing images from this shoot but here is one I thought you all might enjoy. There really is a "Lost America" kind of look and feel to Denver's Colfax avenue, a lot which I really feel should be preserved, but sadly, is slowly has been suggested that I at some point publish a book showcasing my retro photography, and I have given it some serious thought, and yes, I suppose in the future I will do that, why not I figure.

It is amazing how one's trained eye becomes so much more aware of immediate surroundings isn't it? I imagine most folks just pass these old signs and the architecture which they represent on by, never thinking twice....

Got Snow?

Got Snow?
Originally uploaded by jdebordphoto
Got Snow?

We sure do in Denver today, a full on Blizzard! I just took this a little bit ago. Snow, finally, it has been in the 80's lately, so this is a nice relief.

Now my German Shepherd Klaus wants to talk and say a few things, so I will let him;

"I don't know how Johnny let's me get in these situations....I sit here with all this snow falling on my damn face, while he holds the ball above something you guys call a damn camera, just so he can take these photos of me. I am starting to think I am nuts! But, I love the snow, I get excited when I first wake up in the morning and see it outside, and become very hyper and must go out and play RIGHT AWAY! I love to romp in it, jump in it, bury my ball and chew bones in it! I love this damn stuff! " Ok Klaus, that is good, settle down, I know you are excited, we will go back out and play some more in just a few minutes, any longer and you will be blogging in the description here! lol