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Sunday, March 31, 2013

Scavenger Scavenger

Does not Easter, on the fun side, have the potential for a scavenger hunt for those eggs and yummies?  So this week the Scavenger Hunt Sunday falls on a noted Scavenger day.  At least that's how "Sue Cs It".




Just Water to Start
Just Water to Start
 
Water:  Sometimes it's water to finish too.  I think that's when the wait staff gets bummed.  Smaller tip when it's "only" water.  But, it's healthier.



Quiet Street
Quiet Street
 
Empty:  Well except for that guy.



At the Gym 207/365
At the Gym 207/365
 
Fresh:  Fresh when you start, whooped when you finish.
The instructor walked in when I was taking this shot and said "what ARE you doing?"  I should have said I was practicing those God awful planks she has us do.



Table Top
Table Top
 
Weathered:  Yup.  I'm still weathered out, but icicles usually mean sun and melting.




In or Out BW 203/365
In or Out BW 203/365
 
Ordinary:  Travis.  My brother and sis-in-law's cat.
I really love this shot, junk filled laundry basket and all.  It was one of those instinct shots-thru the windshield as I was about to pull out of their yard.  An ordinary every day scene.
The texture (Kim Klassen) totally enhanced the shot and did hide much more clutter behind the laundry basket.
 
 
Happy holiday to those celebrating Easter and Passover.  Hope you have a joyful time with your family.
 
 
 



Friday, March 29, 2013

Weekend Reflections

Linking with James for Weekend Reflections.



Rust Reflection
Rust Reflection



Sundown 200/365
Sundown 200/365



Dog Walk Time
Dog Walk Time
 
 
Been trying to keep up with the reflections, be a bit more observant when opportunity arises. 
Three snags from 3 different occasions when I was paying attention.  Yay me.
 
 
 
 

The Best Spot
The Best Spot
 
 
Here's a selfie from the gym at (yes and holy crap) 5:30 a.m. Thursday.  If you get there first you can choose a spot in the back where there's more chance to goof off.  Whereas there are tons of wall length mirrors in "studio 1", I didn't need to be observant to find a reflection, just awake.
 
 
 
Happy weekend to you, especially if you have holiday celebrations.  I shall spend my Easter Sunday cloistered in a corner trying to avoid the sugar laden niece and nephew.  Wine may help me.
 
 

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Third Thursday

Linking with Brenda for this month's third Thursday.....on nearly the 4th Thursday, but I'm here, and fortunately there's a window of time to get here in.  Thank you hostess mostest.





This month I've been making an effort to work in Lightroom more. And, it is an effort. I know many of you work almost solely there, but I'm having a very hard time letting go of my Photoshop where I feel much more skilled (tho' with still plenty to learn).



Eyes 179/365
Eyes 179/365



Stone Pilings 197/365
Stone Pilings 197/365


Trees
Trees
 
Here are a few that I especially like the result of.  Last month I mentioned playing with duo tones, and it looks like in LR is where that started.  Don't know what I like about them....maybe they're different.  I'm pretty bored in the images I've been taking so creating something that feels new/different may be good to ease the same ol' same 'ol feeling that's haunting me.
 
 
Yesterday I went to Portland and had an 1/2 hour to kill and took some images in a different locale.  In the evening I edited in LR.
 
 
 

Bow Line
Bow Line


Her Orange Skirt
Her Orange Skirt


Trapped
Trapped
 
 
I tried to stay away from the duo tones and preset possibilities.  I used the sync button which is somewhat helpful but I seem to have to go back and tweak each image anyway. In the end I brought each image into PS because the warming in LR is too yellow-ish for me, and made final adjustments especially to reds and oranges that didn't appeal as finished in LR.
 
A couple things I DO like about LR.  Using gradient to tone down a too bright area as in the top part of this lobster trap image.  I also like adding the vignette from time to time.  The crop feature is easy to adjust and then change and it's very cool to totally screw up and hit that little "reset" button.  Making an instant virtual copy is handy too.
 
 
I believe there is a quick way to zip your image into PS and then back to LR which might help me, but I'm finding it takes me longer to process a pack of images this way.  It is not yet a time saver to work this way.  Hmmmm.
 
 
I shall continue to try and challenge myself.  Maybe it's just a lengthy learning curve, but I've been trying for more than 6 months now.
 
 
Thank you to Brenda for 3rd Thursday.  While I don't always purposely try something new, when I look back through my images, I often see stuff that I've been working on without being aware.  Happy day to all.
 
 
PS...yah, those are dead crabs left in that lobster trap.  Oooh, oooh that smell.
 

Monday, March 25, 2013

Stand Still



 
Bike and Basket BW
Bike and Basket BW
 
Still having trouble getting my pics from Flickr into Blogger.  Used to be a cinch thru the share button.  Copy the HTML code, paste into Blogger -bam!
I am still able to copy and paste, but have to change into HTML mode and back to compose again to get a photo to appear.
Hmmmmm.
 
My page is really jumpy too.  The move of the mouse has the text sliding up and down.
Maybe there are ghosts in my blogger.
 
Long ago I exhausted my storage capacity with the provided Picasa-I've used that before on-line and don't like it for photo editing. 
Anywho, hope I can figure out a less cumbersome way around this little glitch.
Isn't that odd how something that's worked for a couple years, suddenly is gone?
Maybe this is a message of some sort.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

March Madness Scavenger

Linking with Ashley for this week's Scavenger Hunt Sunday.



Ooooh yes, lots of basketball.  My $5 is on the line.  Fessing up; my $5 is long gone, but I love tournament time anyway.  I love football, and March Madness.  I can and do skip any other sporting events.  Football is a doorway to fall, and I guess March Madness is a doorway to spring, though that hasn't really happened around here yet.

My set feels really bland this week.  Too much white snow around.  I need me some COLOR.

 
 



Vegetable Spring Roll
Vegetable Spring Roll
 
Asian:  Yum.  (OK, this was 2 years ago, but I remember how delicious it was....it's the only Asian I got).
 

Yellow Farmhouse
Yellow Farmhouse
  
Wavy:  Snow shoe trail up the hill.
 
 
 
Finding Inspiration
Finding Inspiration
 
Draw:  An artist taking in a diffused sundown, sketching her inspiration.
 
 

Another Snowy Day BW
Another Snowy Day BW
 
Soft:  I suppose all that snow looks soft.  Later in the day it became snowman/snowball (and very heavy to shovel) wet snow.  We received-that sounds like a gift-another 10" of snow this past week.  I can't take it anymore.
 
 
 

The Locker BW
The Locker BW
 
Texture:  Lots of subtle textures on this door.  If you don't know who Davy Jones is....Google it.  Whoever put this sign here has a sense of humor.
 
 
And that's it for the March Madness edition of the SHS.  Looking forward to watching more games today.  Hopefully there will be something left of my brackets that are nearly entirely shredded at this point.  Have a fabulous day and please send me some "lamb".  The stinkin' lion has had much more than his share of this month.
 
 
 

Saturday, March 23, 2013

What?

Is anyone else having problems transferring images between Flickr and Blogger?

I'm getting this......

http://www.flickr.com/photos/10550313@N04/8576565848/" title="King of the World 2 by Dorian Susan., on Flickr">http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8367/8576565848_f83d9c26fa.jpg
" width="359" height="500" alt="King of the World 2">

Unless I go into Flickr, grab the code, come back to blogger, change from compose to HTML, insert the link and then go back to compose.

Then I get this.....


King of the World 2
King of the World
 
 
How can I be king of the world if it takes this damn long to put together a post?
Grrrrrr.
 
Is everyone doing this, or did I push some damn button, or upgrade to Internet Explorer 9 and screw something up along the way?
If you know the easy answer to this puzzle, let me have it.  Help.
 
If it's not one thing, it's another. 

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Waiting Patiently


 
What the sky says......




Some Nights
Some Nights

It's still cold.  I'm ready.

 

Side View 187/365
Side View 187/365

Looks are deceiving. I'm ready.



Lion Tamer 192/365
Lion Tamer 192/365


It's mid-March. I'm ready.

Wicked Hard Scavenger

Linking with Ashley for this week's Scavenger Hunt Sunday.....St Patty's style.



In Maine, maybe it even slips as far south as New Hampshire or Boston, "wicked" means the same as really or very.  LL Bean even has some slippers called "wicked good slippers".  Is this sort of pathetic? 

This week's scavenger was wicked hard for me.  Back when I taught elementary school this would have been a cinch (that equals easy), but no school windows plastered with shamrocks and leprechauns and no kiddos in my house, made this one tough.  The dog and cat don't really need window decorations to make their lives complete. They're not getting any green beer either.  I'm not even wearing a green shirt today.  This whole paragraph is the long way of saying stretch city on the topics.


Lucky Coffee
Lucky Coffee

Lucky:  Mom and I went to lunch at the Green Elephant yesterday.   You can see the awning a bit further down the street.  How fortunate to snag this sign along the way.  BTDubs....the lunch was fab.


Irish Stout
Irish Stout

Irish:  A fortunate find in the grocery.


Early Bird
Early Bird

Daylight:  Daylight coming up.  Nice of my friend to stand in my shot and give me a cool silhouette.  Look at all that equipment in the big ass pack he carries around.


Breakfast with a Friend
Breakfast with a Friend

Pot of Gold:  That first morning cup is like a pot of gold. 
(I know, really pathetic....and not even a great photo)


Cuppa Cuppa
Cuppa Cuppa

Here's my equally poor second choice.  At least it's almost gold colored.


In the Clover
In the Clover

Clover:  Whereas there's still a bunch of snow on the ground this was a dip, and process, from the archives.  This is from when I'd only been shooting maybe 3 months.  Not bad.  But better with a Kim Klassen texture.


Happy St Pats to you today.  I've devoted the afternoon to doing my taxes.  Fun, fun, fun.  Grrrrr.
Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Reflections on the Weekend

Linking with James for Weekend Reflections.  Yay.

I've been absent from the reflections scene for quite a bit.  How is it that life gets so damn busy that things seem to slip off the radar?  I guess that's just the way it goes.  Maybe it's the snowy and grey winter we've had.  Snow days are not usually reflection days.....




Lady of the Lake
Lady of the Lake

....but, here's a snowy morning I did make work....by chance.  I was shooting the opposite direction and turned around to find my car helping me out.  I suppose it's not an exciting reflection by any stretch, but I like it anyway-and titling it with a Sir Walter Scott reference adds class.


Closing Time
Closing Time


Short days don't help either.  I'm totally psyched to have DST back!


Inside Out at Trader Joes
Inside Out at Trader Joe's


I love how oblivious people in this image are.  I'm waiting in the check out line-no one is even noting I'm taking a photo.  Maybe they thought I was a weirdo taking a snap of grocery carts outside.  Maybe it's the concentration on the money that's going from their wallets to the cashier.
Maybe it's the incognito hat.  Stealth!


Conversation in Columns
Conversation in Columns

To take my mind off winter, I'll share a shot from last summer in hot Cuba.
I love this one with the subtle courtyard columns reflected on the floor.


Enough.  Time to get back to work.  Have a great weekend and thanks to James for hosting.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Desciptions Plus

Linking up with Kat for the home stretch...which is sad.  I have really enjoyed this fascinating journey.  I know I have one more bonus lesson to go, but then boo-hoo.  Thank you Kat and classmates.  An extra special thanks to my friend out there who made this journey possible for me. 




This was my favorite lesson of this journey.  I learned so much here about what I'm drawn to.  In an earlier lesson I was frustrated because I didn't have a sense of knowing what I liked in my life in general.  At least when it comes to photography, I do.  Consciously or subconsciously it comes through.




Farmhouse Yellow {21/52}
Farmhouse Yellow



Kick the Can {19/52}
Kick the Can


I like horizontal images with a shallow DOF and indirect natural lighting from high to low.  I favor monochromatic and analogous colors against a neutral background made more appealing if there's a pop of contrast in color-which surprised me in a monochromatic scheme.

Often the mass is an inverted triangle-heaviness over light weight. Finding a static image in my collection is a challenge. I like subtle implied movement as if someone just left,  but I also like shots that are blurred by the subject's movement.  I guess timing is a variable.

Diagonal lines play a huge part in the images I capture.  Often made more dynamic placed on a secondary line rather than primary but at times you have to take what you can get in the situation. Finding a static image in my collection isn't easy.

I like repetition and patterns to be present and almost always the story of the image is left up to the viewer to create.  There's a sense of mystery and the chance to wonder in an interrogative way.


Glass Cubes
Glass Cubes

Here's an image I'm not crazy about.  It has no emotional impact.  While I guess I tried to incorporate some color combinations and get a diagonal line in there, this shot bores me.  It has no story, no life, no interrogatives-but it's horizontal and monochromatic with a pop.  Sigh.


I am analytical.  I am.  Whether I want to be or not.  I believe it is my nature, but also believe that "having a good head on my shoulders", being neat and tidy and organized-these were traits that were expected and rewarded when I was growing up.  (There I go blaming Mom again-moms sure take a beating.)

What I'm hoping to focus on is my inner artist and not being obstructed by the technical whiz inside.  While it's good to know what speaks my language telling me I have a good photo, I want to leave that in the back seat.  I want my artist to hold the steering wheel. I want to feel it, to grow and be rewarded by me-not by someone else's standard.


While I knew I liked diagonals in my images, I didn't know about dynamic vs. static balance.  I had to look it up.  I found an awesome 3 part, easy to read and understand source.  So much so I now look at an image and can see the balance immediately.  Cool beans.  If you'd like to read it, here's the link.


http://davidduchemin.com/2007/05/composition-dynamic-balance-i/

Again thanks to Kat and to my classmates for journeying along with me; for reading my lengthy words and offering kind comments and suggestions. It's been a great ride. Will finish up that bonus lesson and keep journeying on.


Sunday, March 10, 2013

Scavenger Time

Linking with Ashley over at Ramblings and Photos for Scavenger Hunt Sunday.


Making a quick stop at the SHS today.  The to-do list is quite long and I'm getting an early start.  Been a very busy week at work-several 10 hour days.  Yikes!  Feast or famine.

The best news is:  Daylight Savings Time!  Psyche.



Green Means Go
Green Means Go

Number 5:  This is at least the 5th snow storm in as many weeks.  I've kind of lost count.  People aren't even buying milk, eggs, and bread anymore.  Like me, they're just going about their day...well I was up early, but they weren't far behind.


Can't Read
Can't Read

Word of the Day:  Apparently somebody didn't get the memo.  Or they did, but they can't read that either.


Free Snow
Free Snow

Sharing:  I guess this home owner is trying to share.  There is melting happening, but those piles are going to be around for awhile.  Check in with me first of April and see how the melting is going.


Walkin' the Hood BW
Walkin' the 'Hood BW

Wiggle:  Yah.  Cute.  My next door neighbor's dog-he wiggles everywhere.
I cannot begin to tell you how spoiled this Morgan ("Moogs" "Honeycakes" "Baby" "Muff" "Little Man"....I'll stop here) is.  He has his own couch and an assortment of other things to make his lifestyle super awesome.  Mostly he's very loved.  Except by Tula.  She snubs him even though his owners call her "his woman".  Geez.


Sacred Snack 183/365
Sacred Snack 183/365

Cookies:  I know.  They're not cookies.  Cookies are not on "the list" of what I'm eating these days.  No cookies, candy, pizza, ice cream, butter, cream in the coffee, PB and J's, etc.
Raisins are on "the list".  But I've lost almost 20 pounds.  Yay me.  I don't need no stinkin' cookies.



Today for the first time in a long time I'm going on a photowalk with a new photography friend.  I can't really remember the last time I took the time to treat myself to a morning out.  I've never met him in person-he's the husband of an acquaintance, so it will be interesting.  Hope we get some good snaps....and if not, hope I find a good breakfast somewhere-or both!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Oh Snap!

Linking with Kat from over at the Kat Eye Studio for my next lesson on intuition.  Right/write on!





Would it be bragging to say I often rely on intuition?  I hope not.  It's not meant that way.  Maybe everyone does, and I'm in with the "in crowd".  

Setting up shots leaves me emotionally flat.  I built a lightbox in January and have yet to feel excitement or sense of achievement with the few images I've turned out.  Even when I'm out and about shooting, I shoot things where I find them.  I don't move or change or place or alter.  Like golf, I make my shot from where it lies.  No foot wedge for me.  If you don't play golf, you can disregard that analogy.


Two Flags
Two Flags

Here's a favorite Cuba shot.  My eye caught the 2 flags on the dashboard.  That's what made me shoot.  It was a one and done; that's all there was time for.  Only later did I see the cool reflection.  I like the "friendly" wave seemingly saying a relationship, a starting place is wanted between the US and Cuba.  I don't know if that opinion is common, and I don't do politics, but that was the spirit of the group I photographed last July.  They were reaching out and they were well received.

I chose to process this to look aged.  The busy alleyway, the old car, led my imagination to the revolution in 1959-how with most revolutions and coupes, people pour into the streets and there's mayhem.




Foggy Morn
Foggy Morn

I am admittedly not well versed at tapping into my feelings.   Transferring a feeling, if I'm even aware of it, into words or something descriptive, is a challenge.  Figuring out specifically where I feel or what I feel, aside from something hugely obvious, I usually can't do.

Pulling the shade to find a foggy morning last October, I headed to the beach.  Fog creates awesome atmosphere shots.  I remember an urgency to pull over and shoot here....I didn't make it to the beach.  The contrast of bright leaves against the dreary gray-that was the impetus.  I don't know where I felt that, maybe in my foot as it stomped on the brakes and my finger as I flipped on the flashing warning lights.

I do that a lot.  A lot.  I bet I wear out brake pads faster than most.


Song of the Season 171/365
Song of the Season 171/365


Skateboard Shadows BW 80/365
Skateboard Shadows BW 80/365

It happens when I'm walking too.  These boys were coming toward me.  I turned around, made a quick adjustment to my metering, faced them again for timing, and turned around and snapped as they passed.  One and done again.  I'm happy with the result.


Is it instinct, intuition, dumb luck, a gift from God?  Is there something in my head telling me "this is it"?  While in Cuba I had very few chances to think about composing images-or to take my time exploring multiple angles.  It was turn, "yes", snap, and hope for the best.  I was amazed how many images were successful for me.



Taxi
Taxi



Spin
Spin


Convertible
Convertible


Something I began doing about a year and a half ago I think is helpful.  When I am driving, looking out a window, or somewhere without my camera and I see one of those instantaneous photo ops, I say "snap", or "click" out loud.  I am recognizing something that I believe would make a good photo, and by saying "snap," I'm consciously acknowledging it.  People sometimes practice the piano by playing a soundless song on a desk or table-moving fingers across imaginary keys.  Mentally rehearsing the song-thinking it-I believe this is similar to what I'm doing with my invisible shutter.


Corner of York and Brown
Corner of York and Brown



I like those spontaneous fast moving flashes of "take it" that pop into my brain.


Light Just Right 22/365
Light Just Right 22/365

But having intuition at a slow and thoughtful pace is a gift and treasure too.  The eye catches it-and brain knows. It is nice to have a few moments to think and move around after that message.  Funny thing.  Often times, the first image I take is the best of the bunch.  Guess trusting those intuitive instinctive hunches serves me well.


Looking forward to further realizing what my intuition is telling me.  Great topic to explore.