Monday, January 30, 2012

Pews

Our church will be switching from pews to chairs sometime down the line. Though I will be quite happy to sit on a cushioned chair, there is something about a row of pews that is quite beautiful and calls me to quiet.

Shifting my bottom from a pew to a chair, I imagine there will still be something that calls me to quiet. Maybe it is not the pews at all...


Sunday, January 29, 2012

Garden's Bokeh

What can be better than a sweet offering of a bouquet? Perhaps the sweet presence of a garden's bokeh. We arrived at this garden when the light was fading. I felt as though my opportunity for good captures was fleeting. As it turns out the light was really quite magical as it caressed the blooms just lightly and then danced in the background with the bokeh.

I will remember this. When I feel I've arrived too late, there may well be something more special that is waiting to be seen. Opportunities missed may actually be new opportunities in disguise.


But is it art?

Why, yes. Yes it is!


Saturday, January 28, 2012

Winnipeg's Exchange

I got to hang out for a bit this afternoon in Winnipeg's fabulous Exchange District. I love the atmosphere, the architecture and the art that surrounds me in this community. Here are just a couple of snapshots of some aging architecture coated with colour.


Side by Each

Two worlds side by each...real life and fashion advertisements. As we become more and more consumed with perceived fashion ideals, do we not actually lose focus on what matters? Does our life view become distorted and skewed?


Cityscapes

I've started a Cityscapes series. This is a shot I took back in August of 2011 that I will add to this collection.

Calgary, Alberta



Standing Firm


Friday, January 27, 2012

Rolling Hills


It Reaches


Sights and Sounds


Autumn's colours have faded into winter. I am still warmed when I look back at pictures I took in fall. It is interesting how our minds can hear the sights and see the sounds and even smell the scents of somewhere other than where we are present.

Even now I can hear the crunch under my feet. I can smell the heat from the farmer's fields as stubble goes up in smoke and I can also watch as the leaves lose their summer's grip.

How good it is to remember.




Seen Better Days

Stuartburn, Manitoba

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Playing with Light

There is little I'd like to do less than spending the day working on accounting and data entry. Because there is little I'd like to do less, I do not do this as often as I really should. Today was the day to get down to some of this work.

My reward was twofold. I got a bunch done that is no longer still ahead of me to do and at the end of it all I stopped to play with the light.


Ice Flows

Today's mild weather sure makes my thoughts turn to spring. In this image, taken in the spring of 2010, the broken ice flows collect at the Louise Bridge on the Red River in Winnipeg.


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Sunshine Outside then In

It is a mild winter day here on this patch of the Canadian prairies. I geared up and hit the trail this morning before the sun would hide and the winds would blow hard.



Sheltered from the gusty winds, I found some sunshine indoors this afternoon.

 

Keep On

Sometimes the steps are hard and we cannot see the end.
Keep on.
Sometimes the steps are rough and we do not feel the strength.
Keep on.
Not being able to see the end does not mean it is not there.
Keep on.
Not being able to feel the strength does not mean it is gone.
Keep on.


Sunday, January 22, 2012

Pages of Love

At the center of this book is love. It is written on the pages and in the pages and eventually it is written on the hearts of those who read it and lose themselves in it. Once there, it is written on their own pages of their own stories.

Each of us, we all have our own stories with our own pages. Is love central to yours?


This is another example of when I've chosen to use added layers with my photography during processing. Choosing textures and lines and a slight TTV border adds to the sense of wonder. It invites the viewer to imagine and consider what this story is and also how their own story would read once this one was experienced.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Planet of the Arts

My son, Ryan, has had the wonderful opportunity of being a part of Artbeat for the past 6 months. Yesterday evening Artbeat held their 7th anniversary opening reception of an art show, this one called Planet of the Arts. Together with other artists, Ryan showed his work created over the past half year (acrylics, sketches and some sculpting pieces).

It was a wonderful evening, so full of hope and beauty.
Ryan's work
Ryan interacting with friends and supporters
I loved watching people study Ryan's work!
Live Bluegrass music filled out the evening
Father and son reflecting on the show


Friday, January 20, 2012

Curves

When composing and processing your images try to remove anything that distracts from your subject. Pulling out the colours from this image during processing removes their distraction from the subject of the beautiful form and lines in this tulip.

Choose your orientation to make the most out of your composition. Shooting this tulip in landscape instead of portrait accentuates the difference between the long and gentle curve belonging to the stem and the more dramatic curves found in the petals.

Be kind to your subjects. Let them show you what or who they are and then show the rest of us in your compositions.


Just a Sliver



Thursday, January 19, 2012

Pure Delight



Heart of the Image

I have found over the years that it is often better for me to photograph part of the subject in order to show more of the subject. Capturing the tulip's play with light and shadow does more for the composition and revelation than including everything from the tips to the cut stems. The heart of the image, just like the heart of me or you for that matter, is not so easily seen from a distance.

I try to find out why I am drawn to the subject. There is usually something specific that catches my interest. Without even knowing what that is at first, though knowing there is something, I begin to engage with the subject by way of my lens. Looking and seeing, bending and moving, I explore and see what it is that draws me. More often than not, after some time, I find it.



Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Castles in the Sky




Love's Promise

Here is a great idea for a wedding or engagement shot. Placing The Ring in the fold or hinge of a book with a light source coming from behind and above will cast a shadow in the shape of a heart on the pages in front of it. Be sure to use a book that is meaningful to the bride or bridal couple. In this case I used Breakfast at Tiffany's, a favorite of the bride, my niece.

From here you can play around with the image in processing, making it a unique and beautiful photograph.


Gentle Moon


At one point, I was a purist, never dipping into layers or photo editing except for the bare minimum required when shooting in RAW. I have since found layers and increased editing to be advantageous in rounding out the experience of some of my photographs.

Using layers in image processing can add interest and emotion to your images. Here, I've used a texture overlay to add to the softness, presenting to you more fully how I experienced the moon that morning. It was so lovely, so soft and dreamy too. Watching it in the sky, all was calm. Apart from the layer, this did not present itself satisfactorily to me.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Seeing Woodlands

Was something there for me to see? Indeed there was.

The trunks' strong lines, the branches' chaos, the grasses' softness and the bark's boldness...these are what drew me to get out of my jeep to take a closer look...not their separateness from one another but rather their togetherness in their differences.

Now my eyes seem to dance around the image but not because there is no place to land but rather the movement is the vehicle for my seeing. Locked on one thing, one branch, one trunk, one blade of grass, I would miss what is really to be seen.


Fenced in or out?



Saturday, January 14, 2012

Stained Glass

We drove out of the city yesterday to a funeral in a small town, a small town where my husband once lived as a young boy. We had driven the drive more than a few times but not for awhile. Interesting how, like touch, sight can also open wide the doors to memories.

And memories came as we drove past farmyards where my husband once walked, a club where music once played and skirts swung as the sounds drifted across the road into the window of the room where the young boys were slowly falling asleep, a bridge beneath which my husband and other boys would go and hang out, a graveyard where we've stood more than once to bury loved ones and finally the church where another loved one was being remembered and mourned.

Like pieces of stained glass, memories come together in a seemingly random way but all fit together quite beautifully. Worn and weathered, not perfect and flawless, the pieces of this stained glass window fit together quite beautifully indeed.

What images have you taken or left uncaptured that bring back memories for you?

For this shot, I used f/7.1 which gave an acceptable depth of field for both the grasses in the snow as well as the building itself to have good clarity. There really was a great amount of detail not to be missed in this image, from the etchings on the pieced-together-front, to the worn-out window frames and the grain of the plywood behind the windows.

My shutter speed was a little slow (1/40) in order to get adequate exposure at f/7.1 but it seemed to be okay with using a fast lens.

Once composed and shot, I brought the image into photoshop to add a layer that gave the TTV impression, aging the picture even more.

Moonscape

Let your imagination soar.

There is something about the moon that frees our minds to wander...to other places...other times...imaginary or real...

Maybe it is because the moon is so very big yet to most of us, altogether untouchable and mostly unsearchable. We can only see it from a distance and are left to accept that which we see as all or consider that there may be more...more to this life...more to our existence...more...

Photographing the moon invites me to more.


Hush




Friday, January 13, 2012

Tenderness



Trees

Happy trees full of life, love and colour!



Touch

Her cane enters first, then she. Already cloudy eyes begin to fill with memories. She crosses the room then stops.

A single tear finds it first. Gnarled and knotted, her finger slowly follows to wipe the drop then pulls back suddenly. Eyes now closed, she remembers it all.


The use of creative processing in my images, sometimes subtle, occasionally dramatic,  allows me to go further with inspiration into imagination than I would otherwise. Even now, as I look at this image, my wonderings go further into the imaginary woman's life, remembering along with her the grand performances with nimble fingers and amazing skills. How I wish to have known her.