The Big Boom Theory: Santorini, Greece

Santorini, Greek Isles – Photo: Russ Johnson

Why are dangerous things so beautiful. Frogs, for example. The most poisonous ones are the most colorful. That could go for women too, but I am not going there.

Some of the most striking scenes on earth are formed by cataclysmic events. I spent a few days climbing the hills and walking the paths of the Greek island of Santorini, formed by one of the largest volcanic eruptions since humans put chisel to rock.


The Seductive Art of Drink at Silverado Vineyards


Eyes half-closed, her arm resting on the table, you could tell she is savoring the tiny goblet of Framboisette oblivious to the conductor frantically ringing a bell to warn her of the departing train.  This poster by Francisco Tamagno is just one of several Belle Epoque posters depicting the art of promotion and the seductive qualities of drink at Silverado Vineyards in California’s Napa Valley.


A Week Without Instagram: Travel Photography the Old Way

ROCKPORT, MAINE – (c)  Russell JohnsonA Week at the Maine Media Workshops

To someone who shoots pictures while traveling, a week without a mobile phone cam, Instagram or Photoshop is like crossing the River Styxx. I admit to a certain amount of dependence on Photoshop’s “content aware tool,” which can magically erase power poles and tourists in paisley pants. And as much as I gripe about a feature called HDR (high dynamic range), which can turn normal landscapes into surreal scenes from Lord of the Rings, I still sometimes use it when my Mother Nature doesn’t oblige with the right light.

Will I survive five days without these digital wonders? Just me and my camera?