February 29, 2012

Photography: J is for Jagged

Day 29. Just a simple shot of the jagged edge of one of our kitchen knives - I hope this image doesn't come across too macabre. I found the jagged edge of the knife to be a lovely little pattern of waves when turned on its backside. One more day, one more photo and the 30 day challenge will be complete!

February 28, 2012

Photography: I is for Identical

Day 28. Identical in shape and pattern that is. I've had this small collection of snail shells for about a year now. It's not hard to find empty snail shells in our neighborhood, and I think they're so lovely. Simple beauty, it really can be found all around us.

February 27, 2012

Photography: Y is for Yellow Petals

Day 27. I puzzled over what to shoot for Y for days. I settled on the easiest thing I could think of: yellow. Some pretty tulips from the store provided the perfect subject. I love the repeating curves of their soft petals. Spring is coming!

February 26, 2012

Photography: W is for Woodgrain

Day 26. I'm in the homestretch now with this project - only 4 more letters to go! I took several shots of woodgrain today, but in the end, I turned in the most artsy one I took. These past few days, I've really begun to feel myself loosen the chains on this project and just start snapping pictures of things I find interesting or pleasing to my eye. N especially liked this one, which makes me smile.

Photography: T is for Tractor

Day 24. I got a little off my pattern theme with this one, but I couldn't resist the appeal of a vintage tractor in a bucolic setting. She sure is a beauty!

February 22, 2012

Photography: M is for Mosaic

Day 22. A quick photo this morning and an even quicker edit! This is a mosaic in our neighborhood and I love how colorful and visually interesting it is. I just knew I had to include it in this photo project!

February 21, 2012

Photography: N is for Native American

Day 21. Boy, I'm getting down to the wire and trying to find things to photograph with the last 7 letters of the alphabet. Today's photo: a shot of a momento from a trip to Santa Fe, NM a few years back. He's an Eagle Warrior and a symbol of strength.

More Weekend Snapshots

Aside from our Mt Bonnell excursion, this weekend was chock full or artistic inspiration. From cooking some wonderful meals, including Browned Butter Gnocchi and Arroz con Pollo, to watching some great movies and N doing some serious artistic painting. He's creating some really good stuff - I tell you, he's got the artistic genius running through his veins right now! And it wouldn't be a weekend without lots of time with Lily: snuggles and walks galore!

February 20, 2012

Photography: Z is for Zig Zag

Day 20. Today's photo was all about infusing some color into an otherwise gloomy morning. It must have worked because the sun came out this afternoon and it warmed up to a beautiful 70 degrees. Winter in Austin can sometimes be so wonderful!

Oh What Beauty Abounds Us

The morning was lovely and crisp; it was the perfect day to adventure out in search of beauty. We found lots of it at Mount Bonnell: scattered rose petals, lush greenery gleaning from the day before's rain and sunshine peaking through the clouds. Oh, what beauty abounds us!

February 19, 2012

Photography: R is for Rope

Day 19. N and I took a trip out to Mount Bonnell this morning for a little bit of photographic inspiration. The views were amazing, but this steel rope railing really caught my eye for this project. Getting out was wonderful - the fresh air and new subject matter was definitely good for my photographic soul.

February 18, 2012

Photography: V is for Vintage

Day 18. My camera and I got in a fight yesterday. That's why I took yesterday off. The camera, of course, did what it was supposed to do, the photographer, however, became increasingly frustrated with not being able to do capture what she was hoping. I decided it was best to leave it and start again today. I woke up knowing I was going to have to confront the camera and honestly, was dreading it. Instead of succumbing to my dread, I decided to face it head on and make today's photo about the camera. Well, actually my father's old camera that he gave me last year. I grew up with this camera capturing every aspect of our lives. I love this camera and I especially love the camera strap that my father put on it; it's straight from the 70s and and he never once took it off. After taking this photo, I took the strap right off this camera and put it on mine, a rite of passage of sorts I suppose, and it won't be coming off anytime soon.

February 16, 2012

Photography: B is for Bandana

Day 16. It was characterized by a real lack of energy on my part. I was just barely able to get the photo styled and taken, so no edits on this one; it's SOOC (straight out of camera). I've solicited my classmates for their editing suggestions and if/when I hear back with any, I'll make the edits and post the updated photo. I'm hoping for a good night's sleep tonight so I'll feel refreshed and rejuvenated for tomorrow's photo!

Of the Moment: Some Things I'm Loving

A few things so lovely I haven't been able to get them out of my head recently:

The classic film Summertime starring none other than the fabulous Katharine Hepburn and the alluring Rossano Brazzi. I discovered this movie on TV just as I was going to bed and couldn't bring myself to turn it off. There was something so appealing in watching Hepburn, the headstrong lady we all know her to be, playing an independent single woman that is completely taken off guard by this handsome Italian shop owner. She was nervous; she was self-conscious; she avoided eye contact; she stumbled (all the way into a canal!). It was charming watching them fall in love, liberating to watch Hepburn's character let down her guard and heart wrenching watching her wave goodbye to Venice in the end.

Tea. I've never ever been a tea drinker; not even ice tea. But I've recently been drinking tea almost every night and even some mornings. For a beginner like me, I'm currently hooked on Bellocq's Little Dickens, a chocolate kissed children's tea. I adore it - so good with a little milk and a tad of sugar!

The peaceful calm from the sunrise last Sunday morning. The light came streaming down and illuminated this plant in our front yard - it was breathtaking - I ran for my camera to capture the moment. I've been holding on to its memory all week...

Photo credits: here, herehere

February 15, 2012

Photography: C is for Chinoiserie

Day 15. I was inspired by others participating in Souvenir Foto School to try photographing a subject on a dark background. After taking numerous shots, I came to realize how important it is to get the lighting just right when you photograph on a dark background. A bit of post processing helped as well! This beautiful ceramic box was given to me by my sister-in-law; I keep it on my bedside table full of trinkets and jewelry.

Eats: A Beet Cake

I made this Beet Cake to go along with N's surprise Valentine. I had never roasted beets before, and then I roasted them not once, but twice while he was out of town. Funny how things like that happen. This cake was delicious...and moist...and not at all beet-like. There was the slightest hint of beet, but it only served to enhance the chocolate flavor of the cake. And can I just state for the record how beautiful and rich and deep the color of beet juice is -that flower in the picture is almost an exact color match! We indulged on this cake all weekend long, and I might, just might, have even had some for breakfast this week. Please don't tell on me; but then again I have heard of this new fad diet that is all about eating cake for breakfast, so maybe I got a little caught up in that. 

February 14, 2012

Photography: X is for X's and O's

Day 14. I was able to knock out the letter X thanks to Valentine's day! A little picture of this mornings breakfast with lots of X's and O's to go around. Funny how inspiration works; I usually wake up in the morning rarely knowing what I'm going to shoot for the day, but by the time I'm out of the shower, I have some idea that I've thrown together in my head. And by the time I leave for work, I've usually gotten at least my preliminary shots, if not my final ones, done. It feels wonderful to have my creative juices flowing again!

Handmade: A Valentine

N was out of town last week, so I surprised him with an early Valentine's Day card when he finally arrived home.

Included in the card: a friendship bracelet of hearts - I told him he can now wear MY heart under HIS sleeve!

February 13, 2012

Photography: F is for Fair Isle

Day 13. Phew, today's subject was hard; she just wouldn't sit still! Of course you knew Lily would have to make it in at least one picture for this project. You should have seen N and I working her to the bone this morning...bribing her with biscuits to sit still in front of the window. It was no easy task; this girl does not like to pose for the camera. Of about the 15 shots I got (that's all the torture she would endure), this was the one I was finally able to do a little something with in post-editing. Professional pet photographers, I salute you! 

February 12, 2012

Photography: A is for Anchor

Day 12. I took Saturday off from this little photography project (we're allowed 4 days off, 26 letters in the alphabet, 30 day challenge), but got right back into it today. N brought me back these wonderful chocolate bars from Manhattan (my favorite: Sea Salt Chocolate) and I couldn't resist photographing them for this project; they're too beautiful not to!!

February 10, 2012

Photography: E is for Eyelet

Day 10. Admittedly, not my best shot, but for some reason, out of all the photos I took today, I kept coming back to it again and again. There is something eerie or nostalgic about it and I like how the eyelet seems to pop even though it's a bit blurry. This is the full size photo with more context and better framing. Here's to better photo taking this weekend!

February 9, 2012

Photography: U is for Ugandan Basket Weave

Day 9. We all have those days, you know the ones, where you wake up tired and cranky and all you really want to do is stay in bed. Well, that was me today. So even though I didn't feel like taking a photo today, I did. This was the best I could pull off. We bought this basket a few months back at a bead shop and I'm absolutely in love with it. It's from Uganda and made with banana leaf stalks, known as Bukedo, and raffia that comes from palm trees. Isn't it beautiful?

February 8, 2012

Photography: O is for Organic

Day 8. Some days the photos just come to you...I had shot something completely different today, but really wasn't happy with it. As I was preparing dinner this evening, lost in my own thoughts, I suddenly looked down and and saw this beautiful pattern made by the apple I was pealing. Completely organic, both the apple and the nature of the pattern!

February 7, 2012

Photography: K is for Key (Greek)

Day 7. A whole week straight of taking pictures - it feels like quite the accomplishment. These past two days, I've reverted to taking my photos in the afternoon; it seems I've needed more time to think about what image I would like to try to capture for the day. Today's weather was just lovely and I couldn't resist moving outdoors to capture the beautiful late afternoon sunlight; an impromptu picnic if you will. I've come to realize through this process that when you have good lighting, you better take advantage of it because it can make all the difference in a photo!

February 6, 2012

Photography: L is for Lace

Day 6. I was hoping to capture the delicacy, softness and beauty of lace in today's photo. It was surprisingly more difficult than I thought it would be. Of the many, many shots taken in different light and settings, this was the final product. Well actually, I cropped it down for the blog, but you can click here to see the full size photo in my flickr stream. 6 letters down, 20 more to go!

Of the Moment: Blog Milk Shop

I don't know if any of you have noticed, but the blog got itself a brand new look. With some fun and exciting things I'm working on this year, I thought it was time to spruce things up and have a more professional looking blog. Enter Blog Milk Shop: created by Ana Degenaar, author of Blog Milk Blog, the shop provides simple, modern and affordable themes for bloggers like myself. Best of all, they only sell 15 of each design so my blog won't look like hundreds of other blogs out there. I also spent the better part of a day designing the new logo for the blog which took some major Photoshop skills so I'm pretty proud of it. I think this new design affords me lots of room to grow and plenty of room to change things up when I feel like it. A big thanks to Ana and Blog Milk Shop for their great and affordable designs!

February 5, 2012

Photography: D is for Damask

Day 5.  Rolling along now with this project, and each day I have more ideas flooding my head for the next letter and the next pattern to capture. The whole process not only has me learning and teaching myself how to do things, but it has helped me to notice the small details and patterns found in everyday life. Kudos to that!

February 4, 2012

Photography: Q is for Quatrefoil

Day 4. With it being the weekend, I was really able to spend some time experimenting both with taking photos and editing them. I took about 60 shots of this subject from different angles with different lighting and when it came down to choosing the final photo, it was between the first shot and the last shot I took. I chose the last one. I was also able to do some really cool edits in Photoshop Elements - this is definitely one of the more advanced edits I've ever done. Only four days in and I'm amazed how much more I already know!

February 3, 2012

Photography: H is for Houndstooth

Day 3. Much smoother than Day 1 & Day 2. I took less shots and spent less time agonizing over the editing. I think I might have even had a little bit of fun with it today! I'm really looking forward to putting into practice some of things I'm learning about, as far as shooting with my camera on manual and experimenting more in Photoshop Elements. Exciting stuff, I tell you!

February 2, 2012

Photography: S is for Stripes

Day 2 complete. I was up first thing this morning taking photos, in hopes of combating the slight anxiety I felt yesterday at work anticipating having to take a photo. The perfectionist in me gave loose a bit, but then again I also took a ton of shots this morning. One lesson learned already: the shot I think will be the final one I share with the class, never is. But I kind of like that; it keeps me on my toes.

February 1, 2012

Photography: G is for Gingham

Day 1. It weighed on me more than I thought it would. I struggled. Not for lack of subject matter (I've given myself the theme of "pattern" to narrow down my subject matter each day), but for being too much of a perfectionist and not confident enough in my eye for editing. Well, after much internal debate and many "What do you think?"s to N, this is what I finally ended up with: a snapshot taken while we watched the sunset this evening.

I'm hoping the hardest part is over, posting that first photo, and I'll loosen up and have some fun with the next 29!

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