Brenternet (The World as seen by Brent Moore)

Trying to appeal to the highest common denominator. I can't give you 110% effort, but I will give you 107.4% effort. If you're a spammer and leave me a comment, I will make fun of you. I use twice as many semicolons compared to most other bloggers

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Location: Smyrna, Tennessee, United States

As the title implies, I am Brent K. Moore. I married MariLynn Simons on Sept. 25, 1999. we attend Stewart's Creek Church of Christ. We have five pets, a dachshund, Slinkie, a malamute, Juno, and three rabbits, Ebunny and Ifurry, and now Houdini.

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Brent's 2012 Self-aggrandizement Photography post

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I am in my heart a number cruncher.  At the start of every new year, I like to take a look back and see where I've been, what I've done and more recently how many people have checked me or my photos out.  If nothing else, I can be very prolific.  I have 1 flickr account, a picasa account, 2 twitter accounts, 3 facebook profiles, 2 websites, 2 myspace profiles and 4 blogs.  It sounds like a lot but some of it I never touch anymore.

I am writing this for myself, mostly for posterity sake.  If you find it interesting, feel free to keep on reading.  Or, maybe you'd like to skip on down to my favorite 20 photos of 2012.  I also did this in 20112010 and 2008.

In 2012, I took about 26,000 photos.  I've tried to be more precise in the past, but with MariLynn using the cameras even more these days with her pet tarantulas, it's tougher to keep track.  It's about 5000 more than last year.  I photographed 4 state Capitols and visited 4 zoos.  The two closest states to me are Alabama and Kentucky.  While I usually tend to visit KY more often, I make five separate photo excursions into Alabama this year.

Most of my publishing-worthy photos are uploaded to flickr.  I now have a total of 7,481 of which about 900 were uploaded in 2012.  These photos have been viewed collectively 2,193,401 times with about 520,000 views in 2012.

flickr has a term called interestingness where they use a secret formula to determine what my most interesting photo is.  My top photo from 2012 is of a floating Alligator at Gator Lake at St. Andrews State Park in Panama City Beach, FL.  About a couple of months after I took this photo, Gator Lake was in the news as some lowlife killed local favorite Stumpy the Alligator.  I don't know if this was Stumpy or not.

Gator Lake - Panama City Beach, Fl

The most viewed photo of 2012? The Orange train cars at the Tennessee Central Railway Museum.  (as a side note, I uploaded about 5 photos that my mom took and one of them outranked this one.  Go figure.)

The Orange train cars at the Tennessee Central Railway Museum

2010 was the first year of my website, SeeMidTN.com. While my hit counter only shows 1531 i could be a little disheartened, apparently a lot of people are finding content on my website via google searches and not seeing the home page. My webhost's stats show last year I had 7226 unique visitors who made 10,958 visits viewing a total of 60,563 page views with 181,525 total hits. There were visitors from many different countries, so hello to the one person in Macedonia who stopped by. My desire is for the website to grow exponentially, and the more content that gets added, the more visits I should get every year. The goal is for the ads on the site to start paying off someday as well as the increased exposure causing me to be the first person found when looking for a stock photo of a specific place. I set up a facebook account which has 33 fans and a twitter feed with 27 subscribers. These were set up as a set-it-and-forget-it tools that repost my other content, but still has room for growth.

The highlight of my website is the daily blog. After three years, the hit counter says I've had 34,411 visitors with over 20,000 of those were in 2011, so it has grown doubled in the past year. Blogger reports I had  85,917 page views in 3 years, a number which has tripled since last year.

I also have a youtube channel. Most of my good content is recordings of my dad's early music groups. All-time, I have 474,132 views with about 98,000 in 2012. The most popular video has always been "What a Friend we have in Jesus" which was recorded in a 2007 reunion concert of 70's chorale students. That video has 37,106 views all-time.

My top 10 photos of 2012:

There are several reasons why I might include a photo here. Some of it has to do with it being important to me while not looking like it should be on a post like this to a casual observer, some of these are my favorite composed shots of my favorite subjects. Some of these are interesting effects while overcoming challenges to get a usable photo. Here we go:

Nashville & Eastern Railroad (NERR) Locomotive 579 "City of Cookeville"

Nashville & Eastern Railroad (NERR) Locomotive 579 "City of Cookeville"
I am increasingly a fan of trains with each passing year. On three different occasions, I had an engineer wave as I took his picture at the controls. I went to visit the Tennessee Central Railway Museum and while there I overheard "They're getting back!" While the museum offers excursion trains, this one was sent off to commemorate the grand opening of the replica depot in Monterrey, TN. I got to see them as they returned to station and pass back and forth as they switch from track to track to get all the train cars in the right spot.

Great Horned Owl

Great Horned Owl
In 2012, I had a Nashville Zoo membership. I enjoy using my new camera equipment to get better shots of these animals than I ever had before. Here is one particular animal that isn't in a habitat but instead makes an appearance during the daily show. The two things I like the most: 1) the closeup detail I was able to get of its face. If I'd done a full owl body shot, we'd have seen the owl standing on the zookeepers arm, and nobody needs that. 2) My favorite zoo pictures are the ones where you can't tell it was in a zoo. There was a painted backdrop, but when properly blurred you don't realize you're not out in nature.

Toco Toucan - Nashville Zoo

Toco Toucan - Nashville Zoo
While we're talking about the zoo, here's another one. This one might violate what I said about the last photo. It might not look like it's in a zoo, but it's in some kind of building - so it's not up in a tree somewhere. First of all, this is a nice colorful bird. Next, since it's at the Petting Zoo area, I had never seen it before, so it was extra special that day. In my mind, what sets it apart is the high degree of difficulty in getting this shot. Although you can't see it, there's a chicken-wire-esque fence between me and the bird. With the right equipment, you can shoot through it like it wasn't even there.

See Beautiful Rock City

See Beautiful Rock City
This was the third time I had visited this Rock City barn in rural Giles County. I just love the countryside where it's located, nestled along the old highway and secluded from the new highway bypass that's less than a mile away. I also love the character of the barn as most of the lower pieces of wood have been replaced over the years. For me, what sets this apart the most was the shadows and the lighting on this day.

The Old Railroad Bridge View #1 Tracks to Nowhere - Florence, AL

The Old Railroad Bridge View #1 Tracks to Nowhere - Florence, AL
I first learned about this bridge that crosses the Tennessee River in the fall of 2011. And then I became obsessed with it, where I tried to think of a reason to get to go visit The Shoals area of Alabama. This summer, I had my chance. While you can't see everything this bridge has to offer in one photo, there's a lot for me to like. The bridge dates back to about 1870 where it was a double decker - railroad tracks on the top level and pedestrian/auto traffic on the lower level. When a new auto bridge was built, the lower lever was left to rot. At the far end of this bridge was a swing bridge, which eventually changed to a lift bridge. When railroad traffic stopped about a century after it was built, the lift was removed, so now these are tracks to nowhere and they just stop. Around 1990, preservationists became involved and the lower deck was completely restored. The upper level had a large gate set in front of it so no stupid/daring people can advance any further. Now, there's vines growing from the gate, grass growing from the railroad timber and if you look closely there's a patch of mushrooms.

Music City Youth Orchestra #1

Music City Youth Orchestra #1
A good friend of mine recently got a chance to work with the Youth Orchestra and invited me to stop by and take some photos during one of their weekend retreats. I've never been one for posed portrait work, but I really like taking candid shots. Plus, these kids are really good at what they do.

The Delta Queen

The Delta Queen
Most cities usually don't get a National Historic Landmark stop by and then set up permanently. A couple of years ago, the US laws changed on what makes a ship sail-worthy. But, since this famous paddlewheel riverboat now doesn't qualify anymore, it's docked in Chattanooga and opened as a botique hotel. While I haven't spent the night here, my wife and I did eat an anniversary dinner onboard. There are two historic bridges in Chattanooga. One of them is the Pedestrian bridge in the background and the other is the one I walked along. While the Market Street Bridge isn't a pedestrian bridge, it does have sidewalks. If you've never walked across a long bridge before, it's usually windier there than on solid ground. Additionally, the day I did this, it was one of the windiest days of the year. Also, my biggest mortal fear is of drowning, but if I didn't lean my camera over the railing, I couldn't get this angle. It was the most afraid I'd ever been to take a photo, but it was worth it.

See Beautiful Rock City atop Lookout Mt.

See Beautiful Rock City atop Lookout Mt.
This is quite a photogenic barn. I drove well out of my way on a recent vacation to see this barn near Murphy, NC. What sets this barn apart is the alternating sections of diagonal boards. Plus the leaves are starting to turn.

The Old Store in Locust Grove, GA

The Old Store in Locust Grove, GA
Usually my pictures are more of a documentary style than artwork. However, there's something about this view that made me really want to tinker with it in post processing, which I usually don't do much of. The next thing you know, I'll be posting to instagram after it's not cool anymore.

Jellico Motel & Restaurant

Jellico Motel & Restaurant
I'm a big fan of mom & pop motels, and while the gigantic isn't the coolest old neon sign, it's quite vintage. I really like the way the sign is juxtaposed against the Tennessee hillside. Plus, this sky has my favorite kind of clouds.

Honorable mention

The Remains of the Lawrence County Courthouse Clock Tower Dual-sided Rock City Barn near Robbinsville, NC Jackson Falls Bald Eagle - Montgomery Zoo My first good lightning photo 37 Miles to Beautiful Rock City (2012) Getting Ready for the Blue Angels in Smyrna Waterloo Falls   Pensacola Beach Neon Sign O'Neal Bridge - The Shoals, AL (Southern Bluff View)
Iowa Civil War Monument - Lookout Mountain Beaman Motors Neon Sign (2012) Birmingham Zoo Ostrich
Sumatran Tiger Tennessee State Capitol on Wear Red Day

The last thing I'd like to mention is my favorite self-portrait of the year which is at the Old Stone Fort in Manchester.

Self-Portrait at Old Stone Fort

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