Monday, September 7, 2009

153/365 Vow

I got to meet the sweetest couple yesterday as I did my last wedding as an "intern".

The groom did not get a ring for this eclectic ceremony. The bride received a ring as well as a a diamond bracelet. I got to practice some ring shots.

I'm trying to be more creative by bringing in color and texture for these detail shots. The stone may have been too small for my ideas and I may have over powered the ring. I'm not sure if these are interesting enough. I'll keep looking at them for a few days and see if they grow on me. It was a good lesson. I need to be able to make quick adjustments on the fly.




Tuesday, August 25, 2009

152/365 Dress-up


I saw this cutey dressed up in his version of an Arabian Prince. He had beautiful locs tucked under that scarf along with large dark eyes. Handsome.

Lesson:Children make you want to start life over.
~Muhammad Ali

Monday, August 24, 2009

151/365 Two


We were slammed with bad news last week (literally every day) and it's good to have each other during good times and bad. I actually hate to say bad because it's a fabulous opportunity for growth and growing is not a bad thing. Too tired to go any deeper with that one right now. Suffice it to say, life is ---still---good!!

This was taken from my garden just before they were harvested. Apparently moist soil is conducive to mushroom growth, so I'm greeted almost daily with some new variety of mushroom. I think these are my favorite so far, they are beautiful and delicate.

Lesson: In every adversity, there is the seed of an equal or greater benefit.
Napoleon Hill

Sunday, August 23, 2009

150/365 Vintage


Yes! I'm still alive and doing well. Just incredibly busy these days and that's both good and bad. I desperately need to learn how to manage my time better so that I can complete things that I start and build my business!

This is a shot from a recent workshop. I've been wanting to learn how to use lights now for about a year, but have been terribly intimidated. I finally got a spot in a workshop I've had my eye on for months and I was more than satisfied with the willingness of the instructor to share his heart and his love for his art--so refreshing!

The most memorable piece of advice I took away was for me to find my own style of shooting and to realize that finding my style may take days, months or even years. The fun will be in the process.

Lesson: How long should you try? Until.
--Jim Rohn, Speaker

Thursday, July 23, 2009

149/365 Light


When I took my first photography class with my first film slr years ago, I was taught that you should never shoot down on children. Some rules are made to be broken!

I love the light reflected in her little eyes and I love the way we connected. I've known her since she was a few days old. Time flies!

Lesson: You can't break the rules until you know how to play the game.
--Rickie Lee Jones, singer and songwriter

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

148/365 Dinner


One of these days, my constant companions won't have the desire to tuck their LEGOS into their pockets each time we leave our home. One day they won't think to line them up on the side of the pool so the LEGOS can watch them swim. They will forget to plop them down beside a plate so they can share a meal. One day they won't have a desire to share every thought, dream or disappointment with me while we relax at a favorite restaurant. One day they will be on their own and will not be my constant companions. I'm so glad that day has not yet come!

Lesson: While we try to teach our children all about life, Our children teach us what life is all about.
~Angela Schwindt

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

147/365 Focus


Trying to regain my focus. It is so hard for me to concentrate with clutter all around and my home has been a mess since I returned from vacation--two weeks ago! I just dumped my luggage and tried to pick up where I left off. Wrong! The clutter started to close in on me and I felt my creativity just shut down. So, I took the day off and just cleaned and I'm feeling so much lighter! Hopefully my Muse will return now that she sees I've cleared a spot just for her!

I had the pleasure of photographing a party this past weekend and one of the children stopped to pose for me. Unfortunately I still had my macro on from a previous shot and I generally manually focus the macro. I was not fast enough in focusing on her little face, so the eye is not sharp! However, I still like the shot. Her slight smile and beautiful brown eyes held me captive for a moment and this shot reminds me of that moment.

Lesson: You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.
--Mark Twain

Thursday, July 9, 2009

146/365 Center


I spent Wednesday evening with a local photography group and I must commit to meeting with them more often. There is nothing more exhilarating than being in the company of like minded artists. Being there helped bring me back to center--a place of balance.

Lesson: Make time to do those things that are important to you. Those things that help you become more of who you were created to be. Make time to cultivate your gifts.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

145/365 Street


What a wonderful surprise to find the church waiting at the end of a busy street.

The cars were coming to often and too quickly for me to stand in the middle for very long, but I tried!

Lesson:A story to me means a plot where there is some surprise. Because that is how life is-full of surprises.

--Isaac Bashevis Singer, writer

Monday, July 6, 2009

Sunday, July 5, 2009

143/365 Church


I had the idea to shoot part of this church through a vast cornfield. I'm not so sure I got the effect I was after and I'd love to hear the thoughts of other photographers. So, if anyone passes by tonight, tell me what you think of this shot. Is it working? No? Why not? How could I have made it stronger?

My idea was to show a beautiful structure emerging from rows of corn. I cropped in from the bottom because I thought I had way too much corn and the eye would get lost and miss the church altogether. Perhaps I needed to be closer to the church to capture the image I saw in my mind? Hmm...?? I took a chance and wanted to do something different.

Lesson: Trust your own instinct. Your mistakes might as well be your own, instead of someone else's.

--Billy Wilder, filmmaker

Saturday, July 4, 2009

142/365 Cheerful


Not much to say tonight. I think I jumped back into my normal routine too soon. One really does need to take a vacation after the vacation! Tired but happy tonight and continuing to remind myself that living a live of balance is essential.

Lesson:Being happy doesn't mean that everything is perfect. It means that you've decided to look beyond the imperfections.
--Source unknown

Friday, July 3, 2009

140/365 Solo


As an only child who spent much time alone and who now spends very little time alone, I crave my solo time! Being a self-proclaimed loner, I surprised myself by agreeing to go away with TEN other women for rest and relaxation. We all had separate agendas: to shop, to read, to sleep, to workout, to be pampered. When I wanted to be alone, it was not a problem. When I wanted companionship, I had 10 very engaging women with whom to connect. A perfectly perfect week.

Now I am ready to embrace my constant companions at home with a renewed gusto and a renewed appreciation!

I *think* this was a corn field and I'm not sure why the tree was in the center. Maybe it's used to help the farmers navigate the large space? I was climbing a mountain and looked down on this wonderful, peaceful site.

Lesson: Even though we've changed and we're all finding our own place in the world, we all know that when the tears fall or the smile spreads across our face, we'll come to each other because no matter where this crazy world takes us, nothing will ever change so much to the point where we're not all still friends.

--Source unknown

Thursday, July 2, 2009

139/365 Vulcanizadora


One of the things that struck me most was the very simple lifestyle of the people in this small Mexican city. I'm certain I would not find a repair shop near my home where the owner would unashamedly hang laundry out to dry at the business entrance. Some of us would be embarrassed to hang wash out to dry at all--even in the back of a very modest homes.

I went out with a guide at 7 a.m. most mornings for an hour long walk. On this particular morning we went through the city and then up into nearby mountains. This repair shop (vulcanizadora) was the first building I saw--perfect! Out of all of the beautiful sites in the mountains, I was most enamored by the people. What gracious and humble people! Something about them has changed me in ways that I didn't even know needed to be changed.

Lesson: Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.
--Leonardo di Vinci

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

138/365 Vaquero


The Spanish equivalent of cowboy, in case anyone is wondering.

I was shopping for jewelry when I saw this beautiful man riding down the street on his horse. Later that day I spotted him again sitting on a wall, but I didn't realize (until I put this storyboard together just moments ago) that it was the same man. There were several men on the wall with their horses, but I was drawn to this one. I thought he was incredibly handsome in all of his white. His white hair topping his brown skin just added to his distinct look. I was so happy when he agreed to share his image with me.

Lesson: Beautiful young people are accidents of nature, but beautiful old people are works of art.

--Eleanor Roosevelt

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

137/365 New


Back from vacation and feeling renewed! I was excited to see that the garden is already starting to produce fruit! A tomato makes its debut!

Being away from the fast pace of the city really helped me to put some things in perspective. I live in a relatively small place, but vacationed in an even smaller rural area in the mountains of Mexico. Wow do Americans have things backwards when you compare our way of life to the way others live. Lots on my mind, and I'll share over the next few weeks.

Lesson: Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.

--Howard Thurman

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

136/365 Garden


A vision that I've held for about a year manifested today with the help of Martin! Martin has started a new business that I hope will take off exponentially! He's building and helping people to maintain their own raised beds. He filled mine today with veggies for the summer. Yes, we're a little late getting them in, but that's okay! As I said, it's a dream realized and I am elated! Thanks Martin!

Lesson: Our dreams truly are illustrations of coming attractions. Hold tightly to them and never let them go!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

135/365 Relax


I actually laughed out loud today! It's been awhile since I laughed after hearing a little person tell a funny story. My schedule is much too tight when I don't have room to laugh, would you agree?

My constant companions are away this week at camp and they are loving EVERY. MINUTE! I'm so relieved! It's been great just hanging out with me and making plans for me. Just 4 more days and I'll be off with girlfriends for some more me (and them) time. I don't know if I can stand all of this....freedom!

Every time I see a flower, I will remember to relax and laugh!

Lesson: Earth laughs in flowers.
--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thursday, June 11, 2009

134/365 Ugly


I was out with my constant companions today when one of them spotted this moth stuck to the wall. I ran to get my camera because I was curious about what the head of the moth really looked like. As I focused with a macro, one of my companions said, "It sure is ugly". How do we decide what is beautiful and what is not? Experience plays a roll of course, but what else?

For the past two days I've been thinking about how I would see the world if I only had a short time to live. Ones perspective really changes when you *know* your time on the planet is limited. Experiences become richer and those things that usually get a casual glance are somehow worthy of study, like this moth. There is a need to take everything in because you may not see it again. One of the things I love about being a photographer is finding the beauty in all things and in all people.

Lesson: Everything has its beauty, but not everyone sees it.

Monday, June 8, 2009

133/365 Delightful


This image makes me smile.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

132/635 Confusion


The leading lines take the eye to the stamen that appear somewhat entangled. The soft fold of a petal contrasts with those same leading lines that surround it. This is how I've been feeling for the past couple of weeks--a bit jumbled, not very creative and just confused about where I need to be heading as a photographer. It could just be fatigue that's clouding my thoughts, but I'll be taking some time to get things sorted out and find my focus once again!

Lesson: The key to success is to focus our conscious mind on things we desire not things we fear.

--Brian Tracy

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

131/365 Reach


Playing with negative space again and trying to get back into the habit of one image a day! Things got pretty busy for a moment!

Friday, May 29, 2009

130/365 Up


I felt like playing around with negative space today and I knew I wanted some abstract object as my focal point. The challenge was to find an object that was near a colorful or interesting background. This weather vane was the most abstract thing I could find up against a beautiful background--the sky! The sky was gorgeous today, but I decided to take the color away. This is how I saw the scene in my minds eye.

Lesson: All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.
--Ralph Waldo Emerson

129/365 Perseverance


I have a vacation coming up soon and boy am I ready. It's been tough trying to keep all of the balls in the air, but it's been worth it too.

Lesson: It's in the cookie!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

128/365 Profile


I was reading one of my photography books and the author mentioned how photo ops are all around all the time. Well, I haven't been feeling like that lately! I decided that I could find something to shoot today and then I spotted this weed. Instead of shooting it the way I normally would, straight on, from the top, from the bottom, I shot the profile! How's that for thinking outside of the box! :-)

Lesson: Life is "trying things to see if they work".
--Ray Bradbury

Monday, May 25, 2009

127/365 Happy


My time as an apprentice to a wedding photographer has come to a close. I will be on my own very soon, but still continuing to learn all that I can about my craft (specifically about lighting and all of the details involved in shooting weddings). My happy ending marks their happy beginning as a married couple.

Instead of looking at this day as just an ending; I also see it as the beginning of something new for me. I'm looking forward to a new adventure, with all of the ups and potential downs that make life worth living.

In this image the groom was attempting to lift the bride onto his back and she was loving it!

Lesson: Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end.
--Seneca, Roman Philosopher

Sunday, May 24, 2009

126/365 Daisy


These were growing wild on the front lawn of an abandoned home. I've had my eye of them for a few days and finally captured them on this overcast day. They are my favorite flower so far. I think I'm drawn to the simplicity of the flower most of all. Lovely. Simple.

Lesson: Simplicity is the final achievement. After one has played a vast quantity of notes and more notes, it is simplicity that emerges as the crowning reward of art.
--Frederic Choppin

Friday, May 22, 2009

125/365 White


This is a difficult age to photograph. A good way to contain them so that you have time to actually capture the beauty is to pull out a chair. I happened to have one that matched her outfit. I'm not sure about the pillow, so I took some without. Photography is about experimenting. You don't always know what will or will not work, so you just try a few things out.

Lesson: Good photographs are seen in the mind's eye before the shutter is tripped...

--Source Unknown

Thursday, May 21, 2009

124/365 Married


I love to capture those moments when people think they are alone. Sometimes they are aware of being watched and don't care. Other times, they are so immersed in one another (or in what they're doing) that the crowd seems to fade to black.

Here he seems to breathe a sigh of relief. The days and months of preparing for this day are behind them. He can settle in with her and just be...

She was happy before him and will be just as happy (maybe more so) with him. She will be his support...

Lesson: Success in marriage is much more than finding the right person; it is a matter of being the right person.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

123/365 Mail


One of the highlights of my day...going out to the mailbox alone. It's one of the few places during the day that I don't hear the precious voices of other humans. :-)

Today I took the little chick with me and he agreed to model.

Lesson: I lived in solitude in the country and noticed how the monotony of a quiet life stimulates the creative mind.
--Albert Einstein

Sunday, May 17, 2009

122/365 Berries


One of my constant companions loves strawberries and I MUST keep them in the house when they're in season.

Today as I drove to meet a friend in the city, traffic stopped in front of a church. I glanced at the church and could see that service was over and people were starting to leave. At the moment I turned, a very young woman was slowly coming down the front steps supporting a much older woman who wasn't able to move as fast. I was reminded of how fragile life is and how quickly time passes. I felt happy that the older woman had someone in her life who was willing to support her at this stage of her life. Not too long ago, she was probably helping the younger woman navigate steps in the same way.

Lesson: Do not resent growing old. Many are denied the privilege.
-- Author Unknown

Friday, May 15, 2009

121/365 Winner!


Well, well, well, it was worth it after all! Baking cookies for what ended up being 4 hours (just for 36) turned out to be a good thing! We won for *Prettiest Packaging*! Two different friends gave me the idea for the container. I shared the idea with my entourage and they liked it. They picked out these boxes and wanted to add chopsticks and panda bears. We couldn't find panda bears, but did find "bamboo" mats! Hey, pandas eat bamboo!

We were up against some stiff competition. Beauty all around! We had a great time connecting with friends, swimming in the lake, canoeing, doing canon balls off of the pier, and eating lots of cookies!

Lesson: A quitter never wins and a winner never quits.
--Napoleon Hill

Thursday, May 14, 2009

120/365 Cars


I considered crying, but didn’t really have time. I have 2 weddings to finish proofing by the 18th of this month.

At 6:00 p.m. I sent my constant companions outside so I could bake 36 cookies from a recently acquired recipe book. By 9:00 p.m. I was dumping the cookies into the trash and pulling out the prepackaged cookie dough, ready to begin again. I am not a cook. It took me 2 years (literally) to learn how to bake bread. I don’t have 2 years to learn how to whip up cookies from scratch. These need to be ready for an early morning cookie swap. Oh joy!

Lesson: Do or do not. There is no try.
--Jedi Master Yoda

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

119/365 Unexpected


I spotted this as I walked through a wooded area today. Someones idea of art--an old church steeple, plopped down in the midst of a clearing. I liked it, very much. This image will remind me that when I come upon unexpected things while moving towards my destination, to just roll with it! To make the best of life's unexpected surprises.

I'm still reading The Last Lecture and learning a great deal more about life and living. The lesson I gleaned today comes from a quote I took from the book.

Lesson: Through the whole ordeal, I don't think we ever said to each other: "This isn't fair." We just kept going. We recognized that there were things we could do that might help the outcome in positive ways... and we did them. Without saying it in words, our attitude was, "Let's saddle up and ride."
--Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture

Monday, May 11, 2009

118/365 Vintage


I had a couple of ideas in mind to shoot a unique bouquet that I picked up from the market yesterday. The first idea involved colorful ribbon. Since I didn't make time to stop by a craft shop for ribbon, I went with the second idea and that is what you see here. I then played with some "vintage" color to give the image an old feel.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

117/365 Buttons


I spent the morning with a cute 2 year old and the afternoon with my biggest cheerleader. Mom and I had brunch together at an awesome Mediterranean restaurant in the city today. The food was excellent. We were both beyond pleased!

We reached the restaurant about an hour before our reservations, so we decided to pass the time by visiting some of the local shops. We finally just sat on a bench and began to discuss The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. She had seen the movie weeks ago, I had recently rented the DVD. The overall message for mom was that we have to enjoy the time we have and to live without regrets. I'm still thinking about all of the lessons I learned and about the things I enjoyed about the film. Sometimes lessons hit quickly and other times they surface over a period of days.

This dusty miller plant was growing in a pot beside our bench. I pulled out my handy macro and focused on the flowers. Yellow is my favorite color and the light was perfect in this spot.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

116/365 Chair


I like to keep fresh flowers in the house. I rotate them out every week, but these have been around for about 3 weeks now and they still look great. The petals have a rich velvet appearance that I love. I wanted a different way to photograph the flowers so I threw them in a chair that I need to use for an upcoming session. I got to test the chair and snap the flowers.

What am I reading now? The Last Lecture. I'm just up to chapter six so I won't share my thoughts just yet. I will say that it's very thought provoking and I'm thoroughly enjoying it.

Lesson: “I take photographs with love, so I try to make them art objects. But I make them for myself first and foremost - that is important.”

--Jaques-Henri Lartique

Friday, May 8, 2009

115/365 Favorites


After hearing many sighs and groans while my constant companions practiced their musical instruments we had a short talk about gifts. Specifically we talked about not comparing ourselves with others who may be coming along faster or who may find mastering something easy.

In the past I would compare my photography to others and I would become so discouraged! Their work was great and mine was... (We won't go down that road now). The reality is, we're all different and though we may have some of the same gifts they manifest differently!

I am learning to just appreciate the talent of fellow photogs and to learn from them while I grow. The more room I make for my gift, the more it expands. I am grateful for growth.

Here are two things that one of my constant companions currently LOVES. The ever present LEGOS (just a few) and another new skateboard! I have the pleasure of helping to put this skateboard together. Ahh....the joys of learning new things!

Lesson: If a day goes by without my doing something related to photography, it's as though I've neglected something essential to my existence, as though I had forgotten to wake up.

--Richard Avedon, American Photographer

Thursday, May 7, 2009

114/365 Bride


It was difficult to get this young woman to relax. She cried off and on during her bridal session; you can see the handkerchief in her left hand. Finally she took a moment to detach and reflect. I moved to one side and took the shot. I'm still trying to decide if I really like it.

Lesson: Always be prepared to shoot when the client thinks it's over. You may be pleasantly surprised by what they share.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

113/365 Giggle


We were playing an impromptu game of hide and seek! I love the easy laughter of children. I was just telling one of the members of my entourage yesterday that this is the time to really enjoy being a kid! No responsibilities! Just eat, sleep, and play. What a life!

Love this: “If every word I said could make you laugh, I'd talk forever...”

--Source Unknown

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

112/365 Tear


A dear friend of mine will be burying her father next week and another friend buried hers last week. Even though death is a part of the natural order of things, it can still be a difficult part to face. I thought of those friends when I saw this image. It was one of a handful I took today. I had a vase of flowers and I was actually wanting to focus on a flower (and not the bud). I turned the vase and down it splatted. When I picked the flowers up they were all wet--a happy accident. I put them back in the vase and found that I liked this one best of all.

My wish for you:

I wish you bluebirds in the spring, to give your heart a song to sing,
And then a kiss, but more than this, I wish you love.
And if you like lemonade to cool you in some lazy glade,
I wish you health, and more than wealth, I wish you love.

I Wish You Love, Lyrics by Charles L. Trenet

Monday, May 4, 2009

Saturday, May 2, 2009

110/365 Twirl


What is is about little girls in big girl dresses that makes them want to twirl? She wasn't aware that anyone was paying attention, but I was... Click.

Wouldn't it be cool if we all just twirled, just because...

Lesson: While we try to teach our children all about life, our children teach us what life is all about.
--Unknown source

Friday, May 1, 2009

109/365 Older


Today we went on a treasure hunt. One of the members of our entourage is now a year older, so off we went to collect some special things as a way of celebrating! Our first stop was a skateboard shop where this member chose all of the parts for a custom board. It was such a cool experience; the oldest entourage member even wore the new helmet out of the store and didn't take it off until we stopped a few minutes later for lunch. Of course we added new LEGOS to our large family as well! :-)

It's been a joy learning from, and with, our first born. Boy have I made mistakes, but I'm not lamenting. We didn't have a clue about how to parent. We simply jumped in with our hearts wide open and gave it our best. I look forward to all of the days, and special moments ahead of us.

Oh! I came up with my elevator speech at about 11:45 p.m.! Success! Yay!

Lesson:Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow.
--Albert Einstein

Thursday, April 30, 2009

108/365 Thinking


I have been trying to come up with an elevator speech (regarding my business) for a few weeks now. Granted, I've never dedicated a certain amount of time just to focus on that one task, but today I did! I still don't have one. Why is it so hard to sum up what I do and how I can help others in just a few words? At any rate, I'm not giving up. By midnight I will have something that I am proud to share with potential clients!

Lesson: How long should you try? Until.
--Jim Rohn

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

107/365 Soar


I have not owned a full length mirror for many years now and today I remembered why! I went shopping in preparation for an upcoming trip and had the pleasure of trying on swim suits. I love to swim and I'm determined to swim on this trip, but I need to look good doing it--for me! I was shocked when I looked in the mirror and immediately stepped to one side so that I could try on my clothes without the added benefit of having that stranger stare at me. After getting over the shock, I peeked at the stranger and saw that it was indeed me. An older me, a little heavier me, but me. I took all of her in, embraced her in my mind and smiled.

I'm not where I was, but I'm not here to stay! My time in the fitting room gave me the boost I needed to really kick my health plan into another gear. It's time to soar once more.

One of the members of my entourage set this up and I thought it fit.

Lesson: It's so important to be comfortable with ALL of me. If one part gets left behind then I cannot move ahead as a complete person. That's my goal, to grow. Completely.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

106/365 Maze


I feel like I'm spinning in several directions, but not actually getting anywhere! Things are looking up though and that's a good thing. My office is neater, dinner is cooked, bread is baking, the kidlets had school, I'm crossing things off of the massive TO DO list and I went to the gym! All of that before 5:00 p.m.!

This will not become a flower blog, I simply have not set aside time to really think about what I want to shoot before I pull out my camera. Today was actually the only day I pulled out the camera JUST FOR ME in about 3 days. Even though I shot just for myself today, I still did not give my subject much thought. I just walked to something close and focused on the bud that called out to me in the loudest voice.

Lesson: Life is a journey, enjoy the ride!

105/365 Waiting


One opportunity I expected this month, may not come at all. I'm trying to balance the desire to do what I want with doing what may be best.

Lesson: I'm learning to wait.