Pages

Saturday, June 30, 2012

{in the picture" ~ June

In The Picture

I think maybe I've finally broken through the horror of self-portraits!!   I've done something I never dreamed I could or would even try. Each month Christy gives us a suggested portrait idea. This month's was "planking." I had never heard of such a thing!! I read her message and looked at web sites she suggested that illustrated "the plank."   Christy even posted an interview with Cynthia who has taken some great "planking" photos. You should go read it, she's gutsy!! You set up your camera, lay face down, and snap the shutter!  They actually go out in public places, lay down, and take their pictures!  Oh, I can't believe there are such brave souls out there!!  I though well why not try it in the privacy of my yard and just do one. I hid behind a cedar tree and snapped the first one in my shade garden.


One led to two...



two to three!!


Then, when I was taking pictures at the Old Mill, I just did it!! I just layed right down in front of the back door where no one could see me and did it!!  Believe it or not, it was fun, it was silly, it was liberating, and it made me laugh!!  So there!!

I also found myself taking pictures of my feet this month! A lot of pictures of my feet!  You will notice a lot of barefoot pictures...that is my favorite way to be!!


And last, but not least I took the following photos for a Black and White Class I was taking at Big Picture Classes. Our prompt was to take a picture showing expressions. I'm looking out my front window wishing it wasn't so hot and longing for rain!  It was 107 degrees the day I took this and no rain in sight!! 

Here's more proof that I've broken through the horror!! I sat up my tripod, sat down in my rocking chair, made faces and used my remote to click away!   The one in the center, my children may recognize, it's my "don't mess with me look"!

You know, I'm even excited to see what our next suggested prompt might be!!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Picture Black and White ~ 5

Big Picture Classes
Today I'm bringing to you the next installment of Picture Black and White. Let's get started!

The Sky's The Limit
I love to photograph the sky. It's ever changing; the color, the clouds, sunrises and sunsets. Our goal today was to photograph the sky looking for depth, texture, and light. I had to take a ton of pictures for this shot! I was on one knee with my little point and shoot held to the ground facing up. I was also pushing him and dodging the swing. He kept say, "stop taking pictures, gramma, and push me as fast as a roller coaster!" Finally, I got the shot that I wanted and then pushed him fast and high!!





I made this image the largest I could! Can you see those gorgeous long eyelashes!! I didn't notice them until someone in class commented on them!

Grounded
Ground shots always bring suprises. There are so many details in nature that we miss since we rarely lay on the ground or kneel down to see from that viewpoint. It's fun to get down explore and connect with the earth. If you've been around my blog very long, you know I like mushrooms!  They make me think of magic and little elves! These mushrooms remind me of  salt on pretzels. They are actually about the color of pretels.

I love this delicate mushroom and the contrast with the dark background! Can't you just see a little fairy sitting on top of this one?

Lens on Landscape
I don't take near enough landscape photos. I tend to fill my frame with one thing and forget that there's a great big picture out there! Looking for landscapes in black and white is a bit more tricky. You have to look for shapes, textures, lights, and darks that bring out the magnificence or splendor of the scene. This is the Arkansas River taken from Pinnacle Mountain visitor center.

Getting Intimate
The photo below is an example of the majority of my work. I love to get up close and personal. There's just something fascinating to me about the shapes and textures in a macro image. How many times do we look at a damaged leaf and think it's beautiful? The way insects have eaten this leaf makes it look like lace to me.

The Growth Process
The growth of flowers is a slow process. Unless you see a time lapse you really don't get to see their movements as they unfurl their blooms.  We can only capture a moment in their growth. I have a shade garden full of hostas. I love how they stay so green and lush all summer, if you water them that is!  I've never really been impressed with their blooms. They just didn't seem beautiful stuck up on those long stalks. I didn't appreciate them until I got up close to them. For one thing their blooms hang down.  You see their beauty when you get down on the ground and look underneath them. I've discovered through photography that I like them very much.

Stay tuned for the last segment of Picture Black and White.
We will be finishing the class this week.
Oh, and please excuse any misspelled words!
Spell check is not working today!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Scavenger Hunt Sunday ~ June 24

I missed last week's hunt! It was my fault. I was overwhelmed, not creative, and just plain lazy! I regret now that I didn't take the time and effort to hunt and post. I felt like I'd missed out on the party when I visited other's blogs. Let me say at this point, that I'm always amazed at the creativeness of everyone and their take on the prompts!  I'm always saying "why didn't I think of that??"

On to today's prompts:
warped
concentric circles
gear
glazed
marble

Warped
This one came to me immediately when I read the prompt! As I leave my driveway my neighbor's bluebird box with it's warped post is right in front of me.  I wonder if the babies lean in their nest!


Concentric Circles
This one was found by surprise. Friday night Mr. H and I went to see a group of hot air balloons. They were here for a balloon race and spent some time letting us look at their balloons and putting on a balloon burn, which is simply beautiful with all their balloons glowing in the dark! As I was taking pictures, I noticed the concentric circles on the top of this balloon as they were raising it up!

 
Gear
Several years ago Mr. H went to an auction at a pawn shop and brought home a Howard Miller clock for me!  It's a wind-up clock and you can take the back off and see where one gear turns another gear. I thought he was pretty special to bid on this for me!


Glazed
OK, so this prompt made me eat a breakfast full of calories! A toaster strudel that I glazed with white icing! I stay away from them as much as I can, but, every once in a while I succumb to my need for sugar!

Marble
I went with the obvious here...marble!  Mostly, because I have this thing about taking pictures of marbles!!  I just love it!  I love their sparkle and their reflections! Marbles bring back childhood memories of shooting marbles in the sand, Chinese checkers and playing Wahoo! 

 
That's it for another week!
Hope you stay cool this week,
we're expecting temps near 100 tomorrow!!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Look Up, Look Down ~ round three

I'm still looking up and enjoying what I see!
As far as looking down, I always do that!

June 11
Somehow I managed to do this one backwards! I've been trying to do the Look Up first! Oh well, I don't guess it matters!
My neighbor brought me some fresh green beans from his garden. I froze some of them, but did make a batch for dinner. I must say they were delicious; not as tough as I thought they were going to be!!  Later that evening I stepped outside to this gorgeous sunset!

June 12
I spend the day with my youngest grandson while mommy and daddy worked.  I was working on a black and white assignment and had my camera set in that mode. I really like the way these turned out in the black and white!  He's really begun to ride his tricycle very well!

June 13
Today's photos could be called "the end and the beginning." This very large oak tree on our land has died. We aren't sure why!  There are several old trees within a mile of our place that have also died!  I wish it hadn't been the oak. I wouldn't have minded loosing a sweet gum tree!  When my sister and I visited the Little Rock visitor center this past fall they gave us seeds for the Hyacinth Bean Vine. It is covering their white picket fence with gorgeous flowers and purple bean pods. I finally planted my seeds. I had three and two have grown. As I write this, nine days later, the vines are about 16" long!  Very fast growing!! I can't wait to see if they bloom!

June 14
These lovely flowers belong to my mom. She has them planted in an old black pot!  They're so bright and cheerful!

June 15
Both ends of a tree!  The branches above and a root that is exposed! I love the heart shape.

June 16
Two views of my gazing ball. I was surprised at how different the color of the base was in the views. It's really in between these colors!

This has been a fun summer photo project! 
I'm a little behind posting them, but, I'll try to catch up!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Exciting Day!!

I have a new toy to share!
For my birthday my husband told me to go buy the lens I had been wanting!
Today, I bought a new 100mm macro lens!!
I am so excited!!
I thought I'd share a few of my first photos!

I had my camera with me and they let me try the lens before I bought it.
This first shot is of a small label on a camera strap.

This next shot is of a small flower on the side of a camera case.


When I got home I couldn't wait until I could try it out. I didn't mess with the tripod and I was so excited I was shaking,  but, I think these came out pretty good. This is the center of a petunia. Pretty cool looking inside!

 

The next two are of my hosta flowers!  I never thought they were pretty until I started getting close-up shots!



I shot anything I could find like this fungus on the side of a small piece of bark! This one is my favorite!

I can see myself loving this lens!!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Macro Monday ~ June 18, 2012

Summer Fruit

 
 When I see and smell these luscious fruits of summer my mind automatically goes to homemade strawberry ice cream and blackberry cobbler. Some of my best summer memories are from  the family reunions on the Fourth of July at my aunt and uncle's home!

They had an old, wooden, hand crank ice cream maker. I can remember my cousins and I turning the crank anxiously waiting for the ice cream to make. Then the rapture of eating that first bite!!  Summer is just not complete with out homemade ice cream! I think I'll make some when my grandsons come to visit next month!  My ice cream maker is electric and sometimes I really miss the feel of turning that crank!

Blackberries bring more childhood memories!  While we were at my aunt's and uncle's home my grandfather would take us for a bumpy ride through the pastures in a wagon pulled behind a tractor. He'd pull us up right beside the blackberry bushes. We'd reach out, pick berries, and eat them straight off the vine!  Then, we'd collect some and take home with us.  Later we'd be treated with the most delicious blackberry cobbler!


That's me sitting on the tractor.  And, no we weren't allowed to drive the tractor, but we could pose for Uncle Harry!  In the trailer is my sister and our cousin is in front of her. Don't you just love our straw hats!!  We look just like farm girls!!



Years later, our children rode in the wagon. The beautiful girl waving at her momma is my daughter and the precious baby sleeping on my SIL's shoulder is my son. Sitting beside her making sure she's taking care of his son, is my husband.  Special moments captured of special family traditions!

Linking with Lisa's chaos and her Macro Monday.
MM3

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Picture Black and White ~ 4



Have I already said I'm enjoying Picture Black and White with Big Picture Classes?   I don't guess I can say it too many times! It's true!!  In this class we have two days to take the photo for the prompt. Well, really you have all the time you want, but I try to keep up!  Here's my next set:



Cracked Open
Cracks in a surface can add interest to an image. Using black and white will show the darks and lights in the cracks. The very day we got this prompt, I dropped a glass measuring cup onto my glass pie plate. Glass went every where!  It was a little sad, I've had this pie plate since our wedding shower, 40 years ago! It did provide an object for this prompt cracked open. I thought it made a pretty good abstract photo!!

The rocks in the side of this mountain have big enough cracks that large cedar trees are growing out of them. This just amazes me, that there's enough soil to nourish them! They're not small trees either, they're about 10 to 12 ft tall.


Watered Down
This day we were to study liquid and look for textures. We've been in drought conditions here!  I've been watering my flowers and plants with my favorite watering can since May.


The next few prompts were not exactly my favorites. I don't ever feel creative when I have to look for words or phrases to photograph. I guess it's just not my thing!! So, just bear with me through the next few photos!!

Note To Self
Today, we were seeking messages that focused on something we needed to hear or  a reminder or a mantra. I found this little saying in McGuffey's Eclectic Primer Revised Edition which even though written years ago is still applicable today. (original copyright 1881 revised edition 1909) 


Good Fortune
To be honest, I've never eaten a fortune cookie and I don't read horoscopes or fortunes! So, I went looking for fortunes on the internet. This one does resonate with me, I love making memories with my family!


Well Said
This prompt was much easier, we were looking for words that have been written that speak to us. I may not have "sayings" around my house or read fortunes, but I do have books. It was fun looking through my stash for titles that spoke to me. I even posted three this day! This book was written by one of my favorite authors, Max Lucado. We all have fears or "giants" that we have to face in our life.


Wouldn't we all love to live simply!!

This one seems to be written just for me!  I enjoy each day! They're not all wonderful but I'm grateful for each one. I hope I can look back and say I've traveled this journey of life joyfully!



No Words Necessary
All messages don't have to have words, some are very easy to translate without them.


Handwritten
The day before this prompt my Mom gave me this letter that I had written to her forty-two yrs. ago. That would be 1970!! I was attending the National FBLA Convention in Philadelphia. Yes, that's me standing by the Liberty Bell when I was 17!! Note the bottom line of the stationery from The Benjamin Franklin Hotel "Air Conditioned Guest Rooms!!" Thank Goodness!! How long has it been since you've seen air conditioning advertised?


That wraps up another segment of Picture Black and White.
Hope you enjoyed!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Exploring With A Camera ~ Linear Lines

You may not think lines are very exciting, we see them everywhere, but lines have many uses in photography.  We've been exploring linear lines in Kat Eye Studio's Exploring With A Camera and how they effect our photography. 

Multiple lines that come close to one another or converge together is a technique that will lead your eye into a shot, such as the railings on this bridge.

We use lines in photography to lead the eye or draw attention to an object. The lines of the rock walls and pathway lead your eyes to the gazebo, the object of this photo.





Sometimes the leading lines in a photograph are very obvious. The viewer naturally follows the lines to see what is at the end. The interest of this photo is the lush green hillside. The rock wall serves to lead our eyes to the opening and then into the distance.


Leading lines can be solid like the wall, or they can be subtle like these flowers.  The rows of flowers lead your eyes through this photo.


Linear lines can also give us a sense of depth. Our eyes follow the line of grave markers to a distant point. Looking down this row of markers helps you realize the size of this section at the Little Rock National Cemetery.


All linear lines don't have to be straight. They can have curves and still be effective. The orientation of the photo also creates a different look. The first photo was taken horizontally. You feel the expanse of the woods, the quietness, and space and in this case a touch of being alone.


Photographing the same path in a vertical orientation focuses more on the path and the height of the trees.



Viewpoint is also very important when dealing with lines in photography. A different perspective elicits a different response to the photograph. In the images below, looking up creates dramatic image of these buildings. I don't take a lot of architectural images, but I must say this shot of the Saline County Courthouse in Arkansas is my all-time favorite image of a building.  I just love the way my eyes travel up the building to the gorgeous sky.


As I mentioned before, the lines don't have to be straight. The lines of this church steeple lead to the cross at the top.


I hope you'll be seeing linear lines this week!
You don't have to be a photographer to see them!
If you capture some good images of lines,
click on the button below and join the party!!