pics from this week 2

(click image to enlarge)
astronaut ice cream
big cat body vs. little cat heads 


more PWP awesomeness

I received a little email from Patrick of PWP Studio, the super awesome wedding and event photographer that captured our wedding last year about a post on his blog, about me blogging. Check it out HERE

pics from this week 1

It's been raining a lot, so there's lots of green sprouting around

up high
down low 


summer travel mantle

I finally took down the Easter/spring mantle today and did a brand new one for summer travels! I used all things that we already have around the house, but wanted to add some little camping tents... if you know where to find one, let me know. 

I found this awesome vintage lantern and bought it for my honey for his birthday in March
Skip built this wood wolf the other night from a kit he picked up from Michael's. It's a wolf, which matches his truck, The Lone Wolf
I got this super rad vintage sign at a roadside antique booth on the way back from Cherokee a few months ago

other items included: a few of my salt and pepper shakers from my collection, random knick-knacks both new and vintage, the birdhouse trailer Skips brother painted for our wedding, etc.

good things, etc.

ok, as promised and to counteract my "annoying things" post the other day, a list of ALL good things!

- astronaut ice cream/freeze-dried (I don't know why I love it so much, but I really do)
- straws with honeycomb things on them
- when people give me cool vintage things simply because they know I will love them
- hand tooled leather
- strawberry shortcakes
- animal sculptures, toys, painting, etc. with multiple heads
- miniature animals
- I ordered the last parts for my bike and I can' wait to get it on the road!
- planning our anniversary trip for this summer
- tree swings (and trying to talk my husband into making me one)
- having a running 3-wheeler and a big backyard to ride it in again
- looking forward to my parents visiting
- listening to Heart (I dunno... it has just been happening)
- sweet happy greetings from two little furry friends everyday when I get home
- we're thinking about going up to the Folk School at some point and taking classes what shall I take?!
- telegrams. I've sent a few out, never received one. I really want one, please send.
- new ideas- for myself and seeing other peoples and other artists stuff that is new, fresh, different, and interesting
- breakfast in bed... I haven't had this in years, honey if you're reading, this would be so nice
- mood nail polish, this sounds so fun!
- Home is where the heart is doormat, I want you for my house.

How about another short list.. of I don't knows...maybe you can help inspire me.
- What to do with my hair? Its really boring me.
- What should my next mantle theme be?
- Our "paper" anniversary is coming up... I've been trying to brainstorm awesome ideas
- Should I document and share my the process of doing a book?
- I've been trying to brainstorm ideas to make a book release more interesting and fun than the norm. Ideas?


photographing collectible cameras

another thing I've been doing recently has been to research and photograph some collectible cameras that have been coming in. I really love this little Miniflex in shades of aqua/sea greens. Isn't it cute? Since it matches the colors in my office (& logo), I was hoping to purchase it for myself, but it is a collectors item, which comes with a hefty price tag, one way out of my range.
So, I thought, maybe I'll just make a print to frame and put on the wall. Then, I thought, maybe I should print them and put them up in the Etsy shop? Prints, postcards? Any thoughts?


EGG lens

I recently had the opportunity to test and play with an EGG lens. If you're unfamiliar, no worries, you probably should be. It's a lens designed to take a single shot with a 360 degree view. The lens comes with software to turn the single image into a 360 deg. moving virtual tour. Have you seen those on real estate websites? That's what they are meant for. I was hoping to experiment and come up with something awesome that it could be used for outside of real estate and interior tours and such. The problems- the software isn't designed to be able to upload to a blog, only emailed or uploaded to a website. Which means unfortunately, I can't show you the real awesomeness. I also tried to print and bend and see if you could re-create a surrounding room like shot, but that didn't work out so well either.

Below, shot straight from the camera with the EGG lens, without software used
below, experimental shots with lightpainting... kind of looks like eyeballs.
If you're interested in more, you can read and see more of my test shots here


Photo Charities

I have a really important post that went up today over on the KEH page about photo charities. I covered 7 different ones, and have a few words from some of my favorite photographers about why they are involved and why others should be involved also. Please take a few minutes to check it out and spread the news. Awareness for these types of organizations is crucial to survival for them, and they are doing some really amazing things for people!




sharp blogger

So, I posted last week for the KEH page about photographers who get career related tattoos. There's pics, and what each person had to say about what the tattoos meant to them. If you missed the post, you can see it here

So so so, today I found this little write up on another page about my write up, and it really made me chuckle... The first sentence is "Those sharp bloggers who write for used camera reseller KEH have unearthed something great"... dude, that's me! Since I'm the only KEH blogger, I'm gonna just go ahead and say, I'm officially sharp. 
If you want to read that little blurb above, you can click on the image to view larger or go here

Croissant attack

I had a shoot this past weekend that involved hanging croissants from a tree. I'm doing it different this time and showing the outtakes before the "good" photos...
The set-up from afar
Alianor gets silly
Now, here's my favorite... this is when I was getting silly... and trying some "fun" stuff... and thinking about those vintage horror films were there's a giant [insert thing here] that attacks... the croissant is basically her attacker, since she's a gluten-free gal. It all makes sense, I swear.


I've been keeping busy

Recently, I've been:

Keeping really busy; some good, some bad. I finished up some articles, and am still working away testing equipment and writing for the KEH page

Working on an ongoing project to archive most of my printed, published, and featured work. This will probably take me months and months to finish (especially since most of my older published work is folded, yellowing newspapers that are currently in another state). You can see what I have done so far on Flickr here

Doing springtime things- planting, cleaning, making smoothies, playing outside.

Visiting some new photo society groups, debating whether to join or not. Finishing up our square dance classes. 

Having major computer, printer, A/C, and vehicle problems. Oh, the joys. It's been a stressful month of trying to deal with these issues for sure, and has put me behind in my personal work. 

And I've continued to shoot, blog, update, network, schedule, la de da. 

I'm trying super hard to not take on as many assignments, workshops, articles, etc. in the coming months, although I do have problems putting those things aside. I'm really trying to focus on my BIG project right now, and get it done. More on this later. But, just a heads up, if I am able to stay focused and cut back on the other work, then posting may be a little lighter than normal in the coming months. Maybe, maybe not?? Just sayin'. 


ghost Hasselblad

It's actually a crystal Hasselblad 500cm, (sculpture, not working camera), but I like to think of it as a ghost camera. Wouldn't it be an awesome little fish bowl?


Canvas Prints

I recently had a few of my photographs printed on canvas for the very first time for an article I was asked to do. I'm really happy with the way they turned out and hope I can print more like this in the future. Check out my article/review over at Techlicious!



What do you think? Should this be an option for clients and customers?


lens, light, la femme

Take a slow afternoon, an out of town husband, a lens that needed to be tested, some great natural light coming into my office windows, and nobody around to test the "portrait quality" except for myself...


Spring Cookies

I made some yummy M&M cookies from scratch for a girls night this past weekend, and then shot them for an assignment (for I Heart Faces). I decided to add in a little "behind the scenes" info. on how it was done, and how you can do this same thing at home. 

My final shot
Stack of cookies on a teacup saucer, on a seamless backdrop of fabric. Shot with a wide open aperture, near a window with natural light plus bounce flash. I chose a fabric that had a retro diner theme, in matching pastel colors. Blurred the fabric by using a small F-stop. Focused on the front edge of the cookies. 

step back; the space
Instead of shooting on a table top or counter, I choose a chair with a back so I could hang and curve the fabric like a seamless. Used a few clips to hang the fabric and keep it in place. Placed the chair by a window to get nice, natural light on the objects. Added a bounce flash to eliminate "the bad shadows" and give it an extra pop of light. Simple and easy for anyone to do at home! 

plants and flowers



I recently had the opportunity to test the new Lensbaby line for an article I was assigned. The article hasn't come out yet, and I'm not even sure if it will. All of this was done back in February, and I had to re-write the article because I was told it was too complicated, too technical for the reader base. Well, this stumped me, because even though the lenses themselves seem kind of simple, they are really kind of technical items. In order to use one properly, you have to understand the principles of photography, and I don't mean being able to shoot on automatic. So, a non-technical piece on a technical item, challenge one. Challenge two, write it without involving my personal feelings on the products. Ok, I did this one fine. But let me tell you, I'm not a fan. I did not enjoy shooting with these. I took a ton of pictures to only be feeling somewhere between so-so and mildly liking a few of them. The aperture disks are a pain to change, as is the optics within the new "Optice Swap System"... I almost thought I was dumb for awhile when first trying to figure out the directions on how to swap. Then realized it wasn't me, but extremely poor directions and a more complicated process than was really needed. Some people love them, some people hate them, but I am not a Lensbaby lover. I'll probably never use one again.

So, why am I sharing this info? Well, it's kind of "behind the scenes" info. I guess. 1) I've never had to re-write an article. 2) How many people tell you that they had to re-write it and that it may not even end up being published? 3) I spent a lot of time to experiment and test the equipment, and want to show my photos, regardless of how I feel about the lenses.... the poor photos are just sitting there yelling at me every day, "post me, post me".

For those of you unfamilar with what theses lenses do... To put it simply, they are known for their "sweet spot of focus" and surrounding blur.

shot with an older Lensbaby, the 3G
shot with the new Composer Lensbaby
Composer + Fisheye Optic
Composer + Soft Focus Optic
Composer + Pinhole/Zone Plate Optic

For more of my Lensbaby test photos, see my Flickr set.
For more info. on the Lensbaby line, see their website.


Tanglewood Farms 2

The 2nd set from our Tanglewood Farms trip: kids and fun
chocolate milk mustache

the bee chasing dance & a baby miniature goat
can't reach
time to go home
To see the entire set from Tanglewood Farms, visit my Flickr set here.