Monday, September 28, 2009

beautiful day.

This has been the best week ever.

Not for any particular reason, other than IT'S BEAUTIFUL OUTSIDE.

Picture-perfect beautiful.

Beautiful weather. Beautiful scenery. Beautiful days. Beautiful nights.

And I have taken so many pictures it's unreal. And I've got some cued up so I can finish all of these saved drafts!

I'm definitely not the greatest blogger, since I tend to get backed up with posts. I'm not worried. I'll catch up, slowly but surely. But not right now. It's too gorgeous outside.

the helga iphone.

Iphone apps rock.

Iphone photography apps rock.

At least the ones I have rock.

I only have two. Camera Bag and Camera Kit. What's really awesome is taking a photo, processing it with one app, then adding more effects with another app.

This one was taken using Camera Bag. One of the best things about Autumn (remember how awesome it is?) is the Pumpkin Spice Latte from Starbucks. With whip. Glee.

So I took it and gave it the Helga look. Nice.

There are some more photog apps on my "to acquire soon" list: Best Camera, Camera Genius, Snapture, and TiltShift Generator. I can't wait.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

photog challenge, day 7: iphone fun.

The objective of doing this photography challenge is for me to become a better photographer. My father was a good photographer. He took a few classes at Emory, turned our den into a darkroom, had all of this major equipment and all of these random (to me) chemicals in milk gallon jugs in the hall closet. I remember it all looked like water, but it didn't smell like it!

There were many times when my father would wake me up in the middle of the night and take me into the den and show me what he was doing. It was absolutely FASCINATING, watching those papers go into one of those little hospital pans filled with "water," and, like a Polaroid being shaken, come to life, filled with images. What would start out as unknown and uncertain would turn into something I didn't expect, and it was always beautiful. My daddy would always instruct me to wait for it, because it was indeed coming. So I would wait, because I believed and trusted him.

I am so glad my daddy took me with him everywhere he went to take pictures. I am glad he turned our living room into a studio at times. And I am so grateful for all of those nights we spent in the darkroom, developing pictures. I have such awesome memories of those times. My father instilled his love of music in me, AND his love of photography. So, I'd like to get really good at it, like he did.

He owned a Minolta and a Yashica. I own a Nikon. I think he'd be proud of that. I kind of wish I still had his Yashica, though. It would be a cool vintage item to have on my bookshelf.

The photo above isn't actually a Nikon photo. It's a photo I took of a page out of my journal. I took it and processed it with my iphone. I have been really stressed the past few days, and when I got home I just decided to write this over and over again. When I was done, I felt better. I needed a reminder that things will work out even though they seem uncertain at the moment, because my heavenly Father is right there working them out for me. All he needs from me is to believe and trust him. If I could believe and trust my earthly father, how much more can I believe and trust Him?

I said I would read the same pages that I've been reading the past few days in my Digital Field Guide, and I did! And now, I've got it. I knew it would sink in after a few readings, even amidst all of life's distractions. So, yay.

And yay for photog inspiration! It's so incredible seeing what others can produce. What a huge motivator. Check this out: eve simone photography.

And be sure to check out Tasra Dawson's site.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

what i've received lately.

I mentioned a while back that I had won several giveaways, and here are a few of my prizes:

A copy of Mixtape Zine, which is chock full of fun crafty projects, all the way from Australia,

and a package of goodies from Fin + Roe. The prize was a set of 12 custom photo magnets, which I had made with my wedding photo. But I also received a bunch of extra treats, like stationery and indie coupons. So, yay!

I look forward to winning my next giveaway very soon. It's been happening so much lately, I pretty much expect it now. Gifts and surprises are always fun!

photog challenge, day 6: patterns.

I've discovered that I like taking pictures of mundane things. Really mundane things. I think my goal is to try to make the mundane things look really cool or beautiful. Many times the mundane things look super-cool to me already, and other times they don't but I just keep snapping the camera.

This was one of those pictures. I just snapped and snapped and snapped, then I looked at all of the photos I had, and this one all of a sudden looked cool. It's because of the patterns, I think. I just instantly noticed the pattern on the table, then on the pail, then on my purse, and I thought, cool.

Okay so my writing on this post is really bad. I don't care. Sometimes I communicate quite eloquently. Most of the time, actually, I communicate quite eloquently. Then there are other times when my two favorite words are "like" and "um." This is one of those evenings, except my favorite word today is, apparently, "cool." It's been a long day and my brain's feeling it now. Sigh.

And because my brain is pretty much mush, and because the lens thing is really overwhelming me right now (like, what?), I read the exact same pages in my Digital Field Guide today. And probably will tomorrow. Yep.

Photography inspiration abounds, and that makes me super-happy. Most of the time it gives me this awesome, "Wow how'd they do that I want to do it too and I'm totally gonna" feeling. It really is quite great. Today's quite great photog inspiration comes from LD Photography.

And Tasra Dawson's site is quite inspiring and amazing too, and I'm following her challenge.

Monday, September 21, 2009

photog challenge, day 5.

After having my camera for about three months, I discovered angles.

I mean, I discovered, for myself (I know that everyone else in the photography universe already knew this) that pictures are more interesting when taken from different angles. That is one of the small things that I always noticed about other people's photographs but didn't know that THAT was what I was noticing. Angles really do make a difference. So I've been conscious of my angles pretty much always now.

Which leads me to this photo. It is a very simple photo, of a very simple subject: windows. In a church. I just think it came out cool.

In my Digital Field Guide, I read pages 16-24 again, about the lenses and their parts and functions. Yikes there is a lot to learn just about my camera alone, much less the art of photography. Feeling a little overwhelmed...

Not necessarily helping with the overwhelmed feeling, but definitely inspiring nonetheless, are the incredible links I've been finding. Like this one: A Little Sussy.

Here is a link to Tasra Dawson's site which describes this photography challenge.

the flood of '09.

Today was rather frightening.

I've been in floods before. When I was a little girl, there was a tiny creek behind our house and it flooded two or three times during my childhood. It was scary then. None of that compares to what went on today.

Several major freeways were closed due to severe flooding, including I-75, which was pretty much a lake. It looked so bad I couldn't believe my eyes. And having to drive through a small flooded area left me a little anxious. I remembered though that God has not given me a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and a sound mind, and that helped me snap out of it and remain in peace around my children. We made it home after several hours, at which time I promptly made some cheese and onion enchiladas. And some black beans. Comfort food rocks. And it really is comforting.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

photog challenge, day 4.

Time to catch up on these posts! Thankfully the shutterbug in me has snapped a lot of photos each day, so I have a lot to share. It's difficult sometimes to choose one photo.

I was trying to get a picture of the doll by itself, and I did eventually, but my son ended up popping behind the doll in this one, and I snapped it anyway. I like how it came out.

My Digital Photography Guide is full of useful information, and for some reason it takes me a while to digest what I've read in this book sometimes. That doesn't happen to me with anything else. Odd that. At any rate, today I read pages 16-24. There was quite a good bit of information about the parts of my lenses and what they do. Yeah.

For photog inspiration, the Little People blog is amazing. I was mega-inspired by the creativity that I found there. I love all of the great photography links I have found! Quite awesome.

For those interested in why I am doing this, check this link.

Friday, September 18, 2009


The days have gotten completely away from me! A solid week of being gone all day and getting home late in the evening, and hitting the sack due to barely keeping my eyes open! Who knew one's schedule could be so jam-packed even when not planned that way? At least I was taking pictures and reading. Will catch up on the photog challenge posts this weekend.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

what's got me inspired right now.

Snapple Peach Tea
stringed instruments

That's a sweet list. It's amazing how such little things bring such immense joy.

Monday, September 14, 2009

photog challenge, day 3: manual focus.

So I tried using the manual focus on my camera for the first time. Yeah. I'll get better. And yet, for some odd reason I am quite taken with this shot. I'm not really sure what it is, but I am really drawn to that light--its shape, its fuzzy-ness, its off-centered-ness. So yeah.

I read throgh pages 6-9 in my Digital Field Guide. I have yet to use the self-timer, but at least I know how to review my pictures! And zoom in/out when reviewing. And now I know what that little key button next to my viewfinder does. Brand new information.

Photography inspiration for me today comes from the Color Me Katie blog. She is so inventive and thoughtful with her photos, and they are full of vibrant color. I would describe it as a "happy" blog, and one feels happy while looking at it!

To find out more about this photography challenge in which I am participating, go here.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

photog challenge, day 2.

Well, I was away from my computer all afternoon/evening/night. I finally got home around 1-something this morning, and headed straight to bed. So I'm posting what I did have for Day 2 now.

I decided to capture some sunlight, because I think sunlight is perfect. I wanted to do it in a way that would seem...not-the-obvious-choice, I guess? Again, it's me and my attempt at "artsy." I really want to move far beyond the "Say cheese!" mode, and my hope is that soon "artsy" won't be something I describe as merely an "attempt."

Okay. That's a lot of quotation marks. But I digress...

Reading in my Nikon Digital Field Guide: the same pages on shooting modes. Why? Because I forgot the info from the day before. Lame, I know. But perhaps not. That's what one does when one's in school learning a new subject and doing homework studying.

Work of another photographer: this part is really exciting, because I have seen SO MANY! And they are so inspiring and incredibly talented. It's quite a motivator. Anyway, one whose work is the absolute biz-ness is Alicia Bock. So, so pretty.

If you want to know what this challenge is that I am doing, check out Tasra Dawson's site.

Friday, September 11, 2009

photography challenge.

I joined Tasra Dawson's challenge to improve my photography over the next thirty days. The requirements are:

1. to shoot something each day,
2. to read something out of my instruction guide each day,
3. to look at the work of another photographer each day.

I have to remember to NOT compare my pictures with anyone else, as Tasra is a professional along with many others who have joined her, and I am not. I am, pretty much, a complete newbie. And I'm okay with that. I figure this would be a good way to learn more, push myself out of the boundaries of plain old point and shoot (even with a DSLR camera), and become inspired anew every day.

So, the first photo I did is a type of photo that I hate. Despise. Loathe. Detest. But following through on the "pushing out of boundaries" theme, I did it anyway: a self-portrait. And, following through on the aforementioned theme even further, I played around with some in-camera editing. Very little, but some editing nonetheless.

I'm not nearly as pretty as I used to be, but ho-hum, I guess a little bit of that comes with age and life progression. It's not my whole face, because I am trying to learn to do more slightly "artsy" photos.

Okay...this one isn't really "artsy," but it's not the typical run-of-the-mill self-portrait either, so it's okay.

As for the instruction guide, I have a Nikon D40/D40x Digital Field Guide that I got back in March I think. Today I went back and re-read pages 2-5 about shooting modes. I may have to read that a few times.

I've looked at quite a few photographers' work today, as I have a ton of blogs in my Google reader that provide a great deal of inspiration. Not only that, but there are a few photogs on etsy by whose work I am completely enchanted. One is Champagne Photography. Definitely worth a look.

My Eye-Fi card is still giving me fits on and off, so hopefully I won't run into problems uploading pics tomorrow. And I've discovered that I am over my 200-photo limit on Flickr, so some of my earlier photos are not being shown right now. A Flickr Pro Account is definitely on my birthday and Christmas wish lists.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

my would be portfolio: the cloud and sky edition, part 2.

I've had a very weird weekend with my camera. For a couple of days it just would not take any pictures. It would focus, but not release the shutter. Really put a damper on my weekend photography plans. I just ended up using my iphone though. The second picture from the top was taken with my iphone months ago. The bottom picture was done with a disposable camera years ago.

I had planned on embarking upon a special photography project this past weekend that would require my accountability for 30 days. I have decided to start this coming weekend, probably Friday. I will share it with you then.

Friday, September 04, 2009

my would be portfolio: the cloud and sky edition, part 1.

I am still learning my way around my camera, even though I've had it since last December! I've just now started playing around with other settings, other than just "Auto" and "No auto" and the one with the mountain on it. I even discovered some things that allow me to modify my photos in my camera! Yep, just discovered that, THIS WEEK. I'm really truckin' now. Look out folks.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

on the eve of september.

It seems like a week ago that the year was starting. It's been a whirlwind! Gah! The year is three months away from being over! Really?

September begins my absolute favorite time of year: Autumn. Don't get me wrong; I love Summer. I love having a break from things, I love having vacation opportunities, I love the fourth of July, and I love swimming pools, cookouts, long days and late sunsets. But. There's something about Autumn. 

Actually, there are several things about Autumn:

1. It's awesome.
2. The weather gets cooler, but not cold.
3. The leaves. They change color. Even though they're dying, they look so full of vibrant life.
4. It's football season in the high schools and colleges.
5. It's awesome.
6. The air. It smells different. There's something in the air. It's crisp and refreshing.
7. A string of holidays is right around the corner, culminating in my favorite--Christmas.
8. The days are still long enough to enjoy.
9. It's awesome.
And ten, it's awesome.

I know Summer's not officially over yet, but in my mind Autumn begins in September. Just the word "September" evokes all of these Fall-ish feelings. Good feelings. Expectant feelings.

And just what am I expecting?

I am expecting to take a few long drives through the north Georgia mountains, going nowhere in particular, and snap some photos along the way.

I am expecting to take my children to an apple orchard and to one or two pumpkin patches. And while I'm thinking about pumpkins...

I am expecting to go to Starbucks and Bruster's and purchase a few pumpkin-flavored delights.

Those are just a few things that I am expecting. There are plenty of other fond memories waiting to be made during this time of year.

For a lot of people, Springtime signifies the start of something new. Autumn has always done that for me. I'm not sure why, but it has. Here I am, wanting to jump into all these new endeavors, just as the year is starting to make its final turn toward the finish line. Odd.