Saturday, June 26, 2010

I just wanted to blog a few faves!!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Giving myself some Credit...

... As I embark on this journey into photographing others, and selling prints, I am struggling to keep up any amount of confidence...

In my mind I am calling myself... a joke, a fraud, an idiot...
I am saying things to myself like, who would want you to take photos of their kids, you can't talk in front of people, you aren't creative enough and YOU are going to charge... who do you think you are...

why is this so hard. some people jump right into this, but I am terrified, and not just of what others might say but of the huge possibility of failure.

I know that what I am doing is so low key... but to me, this is huge.


I guess I thought I needed to take the time to give myself credit for how far I HAVE come... and to remind you to do the same.

I started out, 2 years ago, liking to take pictures... but not knowing anything about it. I took pictures of my kids mostly... and didn't pay any attention to the sun or to the color casts around us. I didn't think about depth of field or that a flash makes a photo look flat. I didn't even know what photoshop was and I had NO grasp of what it meant to get sun flare or ambient light. I didn't see the point in photographing anything but people, and I thought the only way to get a 'good' shot was to do so on a background in a studio set up.


Fast forward to today and I have grasped the concept of shooting with the sun to your back, using fill flash when necessary, finding a shady spot to shoot your subjects and keeping your ISO as low as possible to avoid grain. I know the basic idea behind catching sunflare and I enjoy indulging in it often. I think about DOF constantly. And my camera is always just an arms length away.
I have a basic knowledge of PS and LR and I know the elements of a photo to enhance and what to minimize. I know the best angle to shoot children at and I appreciate still life photography.
I see a 'good' shot, as one that is natural, whimsical and real... but technically sound. I know that editing can overwhelm a photo and that it's all about the eyes... and NOT overdoing it.
I see bokeh all around me and see shots before they are taken. I am getting more good shots than bad and my focus is getting better daily.

Now... it sounds like I just got a bit carried away... but there is a whole bevy of things that I still need to learn and even more that I need to keep practicing. I know that the "people skills" will come in time and that my portfolio will grow if I just let myself take jobs.
I am not the best... and truthfully, I NEVER will be... but if I don't believe in my potential, how in the world can I expect anyone else too.

I can tell this will be a struggle for me, but I am so excited...
I have a newborn shoot tomorrow, a birthday party I'm shooting Sunday and a 3 year old on Monday and if I am not mistaken a 2 year old and 7 year old on Thursday... not all of these will earn me money (since they are friends and family) but the experience will be good!

Wish me Luck.


{  C A R N I V A L  } 

Thursday, June 24, 2010

take a deep breath...

and just write, I thought.
Just take the time to take the time...
who cares if it's good or not, you need this blog, you need this space, you need to write the words that are filling your heart.

and so...




there's villiage 'roud here
with a winding road that cuts it in two
and hold memories
that I can't bear to see...
I keep my eyes to the road
And try not to think
of the time that's past me by
Or the things that beckon to me...
'Cause fairytale's don't live here anymore
And it's killin me to try to fight
These tears that fall from both my eyes...
And the ache inside me grows
with all the things I pretend not to know...
And your voice lingers
On the heavy summer air...

O someone get me out of here...

--- --- --- --- ---
Somedays, grief is bigger... bigger than I can ignore.
And Summer brings it back to me... I think because the heaviness of a beating sun at a summer days end feels like a memory.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Creativity Bootcamp : Day Thirteen

Here's the 13th of my 13 posts for Creativity Boot Camp with Maegan!
This two week course focused on our creativity and pushing ourselves to the next level in our chosen outlet, mine was, obviously, photography :)

Today is the last day

How can it be... that this is over... I guess I could have gotten used to this, but now, we are equipped a bit better and ready to move forward on our own. I have so appreciated this course and all of you who came along with me.

Luckily, Maegan will be "checking up" on us weekly... and encouraging us along... with her new weekly feature

The Sunday Creative

The Sunday Creative 
(click the icon)

Journal Prompt :
It's time to make some promises, to myself...

I promise to spend 30 minutes each day creating.
I promise to talk about my creativity with others.
I promise to continue to challenge myself creatively because that is how I get better.
I promise to be kind to my creative spirit.
I promise to applaud my achievements.
I promise to cultivate relationships with people who share my creative interests.
I promise to call myself an artist.

It may be hard to fathom, but I am, by definition an artist... I deserve to create and I need to foster that part of me. I need to push forward even when I think I may fail. Failure is the pathway to Success... and when I am successful or reach the goal I set it will all be worth the journey.
And the journey is beautiful.

Today's Theme was "Smile"...



Zoos get me.
They break my heart and inspire childlike wonder in me.
I see the blessing in the hard work being done... and I see the sadness in the animals, and the lives they have lived.

I love animals, I always have. I used to spend countless hours studying them in books. Looking at photos in National Geographic and imagining that one day it could be me, in the wilds of wherever, photographing them... I'd be like Jane Goodall, or something. I watched educational shows about animals, played explorer and just loved them.
There was a time when I knew more than all my other friends combined, did about animals. But... that was a while back.

We visited the Heaven's Corner Zoo and Animal Sanctuary yesterday. They had a "Free Day" hosted by the Preble County Chamber of Commerce, to raise awarness and hopefully bring in community interests and donations. I absolutely loved the day...
And I don't mind to admit that the child-like part of me, shooting away at all the cages, thought back to my dreams of taking the photos for National Geographic... I'm living the dream, I thought, with a smile. (Minus the NatGeo part)

It amazes me, the selection of animals they have, from around here that people thought they could actually keep as pets. One of them, was a leopard that a magician kept for his act. And one day, it just got too hard to maintain or ensure safety.
I wonder what posses people to do things like that. We've all seen a tiger cub and thought, I want a kitty like that, but we don't actually attempt to do so.

God gave us such a beautiful planet, full of beautiful things. All different, all there to enjoy, to study and watch. to make us smile, and make us appreciate the life we have.

I wish that was enough for people.

I don't do the whole green, organic, trendy version of being environmentally aware...

But I do make sure my kids know that "littering God's world" is wrong and that when Lydia studies animals in her little buckets or jars, that it is important to release them back to their homes.
I try to make sure they are kind and gentle with God's creatures and that all of them are worth appreciating.

These days, Lydia loves animals, and she knows so much about them. At each cage it seemed like she had a fact to tell us. It makes my heart soar when she does so. I love that she is excited about our world and that she wants to see it healthy and full of life.
I love that there are places like this that allow her the opportunity to see the things that we would otherwise never see closeup.

I love that there are people trying to help...

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Creativity Bootcamp : Day Twelve

... It can't really be the 12th day can it...

Here's the 12th of my 14 posts for Creativity Boot Camp with Maegan!
This two week course focused on our creativity and pushing ourselves to the next level in our chosen outlet, mine was, obviously, photography :)

Today is the 12th day

I had a super busy day today... but managed to make plenty of time to be creative... I am really embracing summer!!

Journal Prompt :

Maegan asked us to think about our dreams, traveling, creatively... anything...

Now, as you think of these dreams {big or small} what might be some small baby steps you could start taking right now to begin clearing the path towards those dreams? 

I struggled with this prompt. My biggest dream is to one day, make it to Europe! I can't imagine that ever happening... not on our income, but I suppose that way of thinking really hinders it, I mean... I could do something as little as opening a savings account and saving 5.00 here or there to put towards that goal... no amount is too little to save.
I want to open a print shop... and sell my own photography. I keep thinking "But you suck way too bad to do that... you are just NOT that level!" -- but that sort of mindset isn't conducive to getting better or ever achieving that goal either... I'm not really sure what the best steps would be to take towards this goal... just keep taking photos I guess ;)

Our theme today was "Smooth"
Isn't She :)
And not just 'cause she is sportin' these awesome avaitors like it ain't nobody's business... but, because she is smart and gorgeous and free spirited, because she loves everyone and has an abundance of confidence...

she's knows she's got it all goin' on... and I love that ;) 

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Creativity Bootcamp : Day Eleven

Hi! Here's the eleventh of my 14 posts for Creativity Boot Camp with Maegan!
This two week course focused on our creativity and pushing ourselves to the next level in our chosen outlet, mine was, obviously, photography :)

Today is the eleventh day

First, I would really like to take the time to say Thank You. To say, that I am proud to have taken part in this course, sad to see it wrapping up and amazed at the outpouring I have seen. I am so inspired and so thankful!

 Journal Prompt :

Briefly map out a timeline of your life up until this point. Make sure to note school studies, periods of happiness, life changes, major decisions, jobs, periods of happiness and comfort, etc. Now, looking back at your life, can you see how each of those points led you to where you are right this minute? 
I was born in 1984.
I was born into a family with very little money, but so much love.
My mom was never fussy or high matinence, and she instilled that into me as I grew.
She stayed at home and was there for me.
I went to school. I was shy and timid.
I didn't make friends easily... I was made fun of.
I got older.
I fell in what I thought was love many times over... it was never love. not real love.
My heart was broken.
I mourned.
I struggled.
I was not allowed to do the things that my friends did...
I avoided all drugs.
I avoided all alcohol.
I avoided mistakes... the kind you can't take back.
I became emptathetic.
I got a job.
I found John.
I stood for what was right.
I became a mother...
I became a mother of two...
I became a mother of three.
I went through crippling fear.
I went through loss.
I still battle myself.
I turned 25.
I am strong. 
Today's Theme was "Hush"...
I found it hard to portray "hush" in a single photo. For me, Hush is a feeling. It's a state of being, a mood, a moment.
It's the pause at bathtime, it's the emotions expressed in silence - in a child's eyes, it's a patient bloom, waiting to open.
Hence the mosaic above... but here are the individual shots...

... ... ... ... ...

and here's one more, just cause it's cute


Adventures Abound

TV.  If kids are entertained by two letters, imagine the fun they'll have with twenty-six.  Open your child's imagination.  Open a book.
~Author Unknown
Every Summer, we find ourselves at this familiar place. The quaint little library, on the corner of Main and Hendricks. The one just behind our house, within a short walk.

All the books are loved
All the crayons and toys too
All the people know our names and don't seem to mind when children get a bit boisterous or toddle behind the front desk.

It's June, and that means, we are well into the summer reading program.

We pick out our ten books, sometimes more, and read all week. Visiting all sorts of places between crinkled, stained, touched pages.

We find boy books
Girl books
Baby books...
We smile and giggle and enjoy the endless adventures in store for us.

We make friends and make plans.

O how I love our Library.

I love the people there and the efforts they make. I love that it's a safe haven, where everyone is welcome and no one need be offended. Where they still remember that kids need knowledge and sometimes they have to get a little loud and a little messy to gain that knowledge.

It's a simple thing, but it's awe-inspiring.

At least to me.

The time spent with Mamaw and Papaw is precious to me, as well... in our own little moments.

Miss Toni, and Miss Kristin and all the other librarians and helpers there will never know how much this blesses my heart, or how much hope it gives me.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Creativity Bootcamp : Day Ten

Hi! Here's the ninth of my 14 posts for Creativity Boot Camp with Maegan!
This two week course will focus on our creativity and pushing ourselves to the next level in our chosen outlet, mine will, obviously be photography :)

Today is the tenth day
and I would encourage you all to join in!

Journal Prompt :
Maegan asked us to really sense the world around us, take in the sights, sounds, smells... everything, all day. And while it is only 2 here, in an effort to stay caught up, I am going to report my day so far and vow to keep it up the rest of the day as well :)

She asked...

At the end of your day, think about the millions of sensations you experienced. Try to answer these questions…

Which ones stand out in your mind as being the most pleasant?
Were there any that were repulsive?
Did any bring back memories from your past?
Did any motivate you to do anything particular?
Did any of these sensations inspire you in your creations?
If you were to try and capture creatively any of these sensations, how would you do it?

The most pleasant parts of the day included taking some photos of Layla, listening to the birds and her giggling. It included the smell of rain still on the breeze at 7 this morning when we headed out for a walk. 
I loved smelling the tea when I opened the pouch to set up a still life today, and seeing all the new growth around me.
None of the things I noticed today were repulsive, but I am a pretty laid back momma, and I think that helps.
There isn't a day that goes by that something doesn't remind me of my past. Something as simple as the warm, midday sun on my neck brings me back to my blessed childhood.
All of this listening, watching and waiting really DID inspire me, I had a still shot picked for our theme today, but after opening the day up to live and be, I have another shot that I will share. The feeling of the grass inspired me to shoot photos of layla in it, emphasizing the height of it.  Also, opening my eyes helped me to see that little "stinker bug" at the top of the post :)
I see so much emotion in my children's expressions. They are so sincere in all they do. That's how I like to convey sensations...

Our theme today was "Full-Bodied"...

This is the shot I initally took...

And this one of Layla is the one I decided to go with : )

Full-Bodied Tea :) 

Hello Girl

Layla is in some sort of wonderful phase where she loves my camera
and silly noises 
and being chased around.

I had to share these...

and I don't think I could be loving it more than I do


see the rest on facebook