Thursday, June 30, 2011

Photo Shoot Weekend

My sister came for a short visit this weekend. We thought that spending the day together with our cameras would be a lot of fun!! It was!! You have to understand, when we get together we laugh and have such a good time!! We decided to go to the Old Mill in central Arkansas.  I went there in early April when the spring flowers were just beautiful!! You can see those pictures and read about the Mill's history here. So, I'll just give a short explanation of what it is. The mill is a historic re-creation of an 1880's water-powered grist mill. It is in the opening scenes of the classic movie "Gone With The Wind" which was released in 1939. It is believed to be the only remaining structure from the movie.
In the summer it's lacks the flowers that are so beautiful in the spring, but the plants are lush and very beautiful! 

The last time I went I took a lot of macro shots, so I decided to get the bigger picture! 

Well, except for this one I couldn't resist the beautiful Oak Leaf Hydrangea that was gorgeous!!  The petals look so delicate!

The yellows and oranges in these flowers were so different from the pastels flowers of spring.

The pool of water always offers a beautiful reflection of the building.

The slow creaking of the waterwheel is so peaceful.  You can sit on a bench, just listen to it and relax.

There's a great bridge that crosses the water.  It's made from sculptured concrete.

 This shot was taken off the bride looking down the waterway.

There are concrete bridges and walkways all around the park and this great fountain.

We had fun and I got in some practice with my new camera. We left the mill and went to a nearby lake to take photos of the ducks and geese.  I'll blog about those next.  I'll try real hard to get them posted tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Beautiful End of the Day

I sitting by the window last night, happened to glance out and saw this beautiful sunset. I grabbed my camera and set it on the sunset mode. Otherwise, the photos are SOOC (straight out of the camera with no editing).  There are few words necessary in this post...the sunset speaks for itself!!

Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky. ~Rabindranath Tagore

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Exploring With a Camera - Thresholds

I'm linking again today with Kat Sloma and her "exploring with a camera" series.  This exploration was of thresholds.  According to Kat thresholds are "a place where you cross over, from one locale to another, whether real or imagined. Threshold images are not merely images of doors or gates, but they are of portals that transport you to someplace different in your imagination."  I struggled with this, trying to find a threshold that meant something to me.

My sister and I went for a photo shoot Saturday at Pugh's Old Mill.  A fantastic place to take photos!!  Beautiful well-kept gardens and a wonderful old reproduction of a grist mill. 
I took several shots of the thresholds in the mill. This is my favorite. I took it from inside the mill looking out at the gardens.
I took this shot of the same doorway from the outside looking in.

After coming home and looking through my archives and I found this photo of a garden gate.

That's when I saw the similarities. All of them have a sense of light over the threshold that I'm walking toward.  Even the one taken from the outside in has light...light streaming in from the windows and another door. That is so me!!  I'm an eternal optimist, I always look for the good, or the bright side or the beauty of the moment.  Don't get me wrong...I'm no Pollyanna nor do I live in a make-believe world. I just want to be positive and content

When you really stop and think, it's pretty amazing what my photography says about me!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Picture Color - Days 6 - 12

I'm finally back to bring you more of Picture Color!!  The month of fun is already over half-way done.  The prompts weren't quite what I expected.  I thought maybe we'd shoot blue one day, green the next and so on.  The prompts have been so different from that and I'm glad!!  We've learned many things about color, not just taking shots of color.

Day 6 - White on White
It's not always easy to shoot white.  Tracey encouraged us to play with light on our white objects. I've used my wreath of vintage white buttons before in Picture Winter. I took a shot of a white heart button. But, it was a sure thing for white on white.  I love the sparkle of light on the rhinestones!

Day 7 - Color Me Yummy
We were to shoot the yummiest thing in our kitchen. I could have baked something yummy, but I took the easy way out!! I had just bought some Cherry Frozen Yogurt and it was yummy!! 

Day 8 - Punctuation Mark
Today we were searching for a punch of color that inspires and delights our eyes. Now, I can't remember why, but I was in a bind this day.  I was gone most of the day.  So, I hurried looking for a bright spot of color and saw my pincushion collection.  My favorite pincushion will always be the strawberry.  I thought the shadow of the machine on the wall was neat.

Day 9 - The Texture of Color
With today's prompt, we were encouraged to discover and study texture. Color alone doesn't make a good photo...there's light, shape, and texture also.  There's no texture to me as wonderful as on a woven basket.  This basket was sold by a single woman who makes them to support herself and her family.  It's beautiful!! I love the leather handle.  The loop on each end of the handle allows the basket to be carried by two children. They each slip a stick through their loop and hold it to carry the loaded basket.
 I'm always finding mushrooms in my yard, especially in my shade gardens.  They are always great for showing textures.  There are lots of textures in this shot, the mushroom, the moss, and the mulch.

Day 10 - Creating With Color
We were to capture the color of some of our tools that we use to create with.  I've always liked the rainbow color of these quilt books.

Day 11 - The Best Of Both Worlds
We were looking for the charm of red and pink together.  I was stuck, I don't have much red in my house and I sure don't have red with pink. Then, Aimee came over. The bag she brought Aaron's swim clothes in and pink!! Perfect for the prompt.  Red and pink do go lovely together!!

Day 12 - Seeing Spots
This day we honored the polka-dots we see around us.  Only, I don't have a lot of polka-dots!  But, as I walking down the hall I saw polka-dots.   They were on a quilt block made by my Aunt Marie for a quilt that was given to my Mom and Dad. Now I have the honor of owning it!!  I may be wrong but, I think the fabric was from one of her maternity dresses

Now you see what I'm talking about!! It's more than just colors!  And speaking of colors, I think I need more in my life!! These prompts would be so much easier!!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Exploring With A Camera - A Flowers Point of View

I've been exploring with my camera again and linked a picture to The KatEye View.  This exploration involved looking at flowers with a different perspective.  So I've been out on my knees holding the camera at ground level and shooting up at flowers!!  I got a lot of interesting shots!  Some were quite unusual, way out of focus and some I missed the flowers entirely and just got sky!  It was a fun experiment.  A different perspective changes everything!  Here's a few of my favorites.
 The blooms on a hosta plant are on tall stalks and the blooms droop down.  I'm holding the camera at the base of one of the stalks shooting up toward the sky.  The bokeh in the background is light coming through the shade tree.

 Looking up from the ground at a Day Lily. The background is an ornamental plum tree which leaves are a puple color.

 I took this one looking up at my hybrid petunias.  I had to buy them when I saw their unusual coloring.

This is a Black-eyed Susan. I loved the fuzzies on the stem.

I hope your enjoyed a different flower perspecive.  This exploration was a lot of fun!

Friday, June 17, 2011

My Garden Shed

Finally, after weeks of blood, sweat and that's not right, there were no tears, just a little blood and lots and lots of garden shed is finished!!
Isn't it just the cutest thing!!!!!!!!!!!!!

My thanks to my husband and his friend for building it for me!  I did help, but didn't do near as much as they did.  I did get to saw some of the boards, do a little nailing, helped roof it, and painted it. My usually job was the gopher, go for this and go for that!!

Here's some shots to show the progress.
 concrete blocks placed and leveled

This was the first day of construction.  Quickly the walls and rafters go up!

We put the roof on early to protect the wood. I helped with the tar paper, but Jerry did the actual roofing.  I just toted the shingles up the ladder a million times!!

the siding is going on

time to add the porch rails

All done and ready to paint. But I had to spackle and caulk first.  It looks like it has the chicken pox and is covered in calamine lotion! 

time to paint

 All Done!!

Now, I just need to drag all my pots, garden tools and other paraphernalia up to the shed to see how I want to organize them.  It will be so nice to have this shed close to the house where I can get my things quickly!!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

New Camera Shots

I finally did it!!
I have been wanting to for a while!!
And I did it!!
I went camera shopping and came home with a new  Camera.  I am beyond excited!! I've been playing with it for a couple of days and taken at least 100 pictures.  I am so pleased!  It takes great shots and is so easy to operate!! Of course, I haven't tried the manual controls yet, I'm saving that for a day when I have plenty of time to play!!  I bought the camera, a zoom lens, a macro lens, and a tripod. Here's a few of my favorites.
Me and my new camera!
I've always wanted to take a shot like this, where the camera is up to your eye!! I see a lot of them in the galleries I participate in!! You can't take one like this with a little point and shoot!!

Randy called to tell me about this beautiful cloud he saw at his house.  I went outside and sure enough I could see it, too! It was gorgeous. So dense and bright! Later, we found out it was the top of a thunderhead. This was taken with the regular lens.

 I stood in the same spot and took this was with my new zoom lens!

The cloud just stayed there. Later in the evening, Aimee called and said I needed to go look at the cloud again. It was right about sunset and the colors were gorgeous!  The colors in this shot remind me of a forest fire!

 Same spot with zoom lens!

For this shot, I used the macro setting on the camera.

These are my hostas blooming. Their blooms face toward the ground, so I had to get down on the ground and look up!

I ran across this little guy!  Love those black and white antennae!! He sure is colorful!

My new Hen and Chicks plant that Patty and her family gave me for my birthday.  I really didn't know they were so fuzzy!  Until you take a close-up, you think they're slick and smooth.

I was playing with the zoom lens that came with the camera, not the big zoom lens.  I was standing right at the back of house when I took this shot! I don't know how far it is, maybe 150 ft.

I've had fun!!  Maybe Sunday afternoon I'll try playing with the manual settings. I'm anxious to give it a try and learn to use them!