America’s Unhappiest Cities: Portland, Oregon is #1!

Supposedly my hometown, Portland, Oregon, is the unhappiest city in the United States. Oh, bother… 😉

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Portland, Ore.

  • Overall rank: 1*
  • Depression rank: 1
  • Suicide rank: 12
  • Crime (property and violent) rank: 24
  • Divorce rate rank: 4
  • Cloudy days: 222
  • Unemployment rate (December 2008): 7.8%

(via America’s Unhappiest Cities: Portland, Ore. – BusinessWeek.)

Portland Mercury: Court Of Appeals Upholds Cyclist’s Right To Carry Concealed Ninja Sword

Only in Portland… 😉

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The court has overturned the February conviction of a man for carrying a concealed ninja sword in a Critical Mass rally. According to the appeals opinion, James M.Turner was riding his bicycle in a Critical Mass rally, when a Portland Police Officer riding next to him saw “three to four inches” of a sword handle wedged between Turner’s back and his backpack. The officer testified in court that there was no doubt in his mind that the object was a “sword or [something] similar.”

According to the transcript, the officer asked Turner, “What’s sticking out of your neck?”

Turner replied that it was a “ninja sword,” and the officer motioned for him to pull over. After Turner stopped, the officer removed the sword, which was sheathed, from between Turner’s body and his backpack. As he removed it, he discovered the sword was contained in a “double sheath, where one sword goes in one end, one in the other.” At the time the officer removed the first sword, he had not seen and was not aware of the second sword. He arrested Turner for carrying a concealed weapon based on his discovery of the second sword.

The appeals court ruled, however, that the officer did not have probable cause to stop Turner for carrying a concealed second sword, based on their conversation about the first sword, which did not constitute an official “stop.” However, the interaction became an official “stop,” the court ruled, when the officer motioned to the rider to pull over.

(continue reading via Court Of Appeals Upholds Cyclist’s Right To Carry Concealed Ninja Sword)

Our PDX Network

I’m always a fan of Portland related things on the interwebs. Here’s a site I found today called “Our PDX Network” which looks like it’s worth a read, or at least a blog post. 😉

Yes, it’s another local Portland, Oregon group blog.

Why?

After all, can’t people subscribe to the local blogs they want to, creating their own personal patchwork quilt of voices? Can’t they network on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn – or in person at events run by the very cool Legion of Tech folks, for example? Aren’t there already enough local PDX group blogs out there?

Nope, there aren’t. Or maybe we’re just egotistical enough to think there’s room enough for our blog – alongside efforts by local print media like the Portland Mercury or Willamette Week, nestled up next to Portland is Awesome and Portland Food and Drink and Bike Portland and Silicon Florist and Blue Oregon and, yes – the Metroblogging Portlands of the world.

See, we read everyone else’s stuff. And we think you should, too. That’s why we’ll be talking about all of the other excellent local sites out there – telling you what you’ve missed, shooing you over to read their inside scoops instead of trying to regurgitate them ourselves. Talking up the activity on networks like Twitter, on events like Lunch 2.0.

But we’ll also be offering up our own unvarnished view of life in Portland – warts and all. We’ll be asking you for your opinion, your insights, and pointers to those sources you can’t live without (you can share them with us via our new Mag.nolia group, for starters.) Or we’ll be recounting conversations we might have had with you in person at the neighborhood farmer’s market, or at that evening meeting.

And since we come from a variety of backgrounds and don’t all share the same interests, we can promise you a slice of life you may not always see in your RSS reader or in your neighborhood.

In a nutshell? We’ll be interesting. Informative. Provocative. Collaborative. And, most importantly, interested in creating conversation. With you. (Yes, you.)

And if we’re not? Interesting and/or informative, or…

We’ll settle for pointing you over to something else that better meets your sensibilities…!

(via http://ourpdx.net/about/)

6 Tips for Perfect Composition in Portrait Photography

The following guest post on composition for portrait photography was submitted by Christina Dickson, a portrait photographer and photography instructor from Portland, Oregon. Her work can be seen at: www.christinanicholephotography.com.

1. Fill the frame with your subject

A portrait is about the person, so don’t be afraid to zoom in close! Remember that zooming in does not mean capturing only face shots. You can also capture “tight”, close up shots of your subject sitting on a stool or leaning into a tree.

2. Keep eyes in the upper third

This is the most natural spacing for a portrait. Try not to divert from this rule unless you are deliberately creating tension. Another exception of this rule is when a subject is full-bodied in the bottom third of the frame.

3. Use framing to concentrate all attention on your subject

Rather than eliminate the environment, use it! Doorways, arches, windows, gazebos are all creative solutions that allow for maximum subject focus and heightened visual interest.

(continued via digital Photography School)