Archive of ‘Personal’ category

The singing sparrow

The Sparrow

A little bird, with plumage brown,
Beside my window flutters down,
A moment chirps its little strain,
Then taps upon my window-pane,
And chirps again, and hops along,
To call my notice to its song;
But I work on, nor heed its lay,
Till, in neglect, it flies away.
So birds of peace and hope and love
Come fluttering earthward from above,
To settle on life’s window-sills,
And ease our load of earthly ills;
But we, in traffic’s rush and din
Too deep engaged to let them in,
With deadened heart and sense plod on,
Nor know our loss till they are gone.
~Paul Laurence Dunbar

 

You may know by now, I’m fascinated by dead birds.  Don’t get me wrong, I think they’re beautiful, in the most poetic way.  That’s why I always try to pair beautiful words with my bird photos. In a way, I do my best to create a compelling visual story, not just photographing a dead bird for a dead bird. So, here are my latest images of a sweet singing sparrow who fell prey to a roaming cat and was brought as a gift to it’s owner, who then gave it me so I could honour it the way I knew best.

Singing sparrow 1

 

Singing sparrow 2

 

Singing sparrow 3

 

Singing sparrow 4

 

Singing sparrow 5

 

Singing sparrow 6

 

Singing sparrow 7

 

Singing sparrow 8

Sisterhood Stories – Meet Cooper!

Remember I told you we were getting a puppy? Well, the fluffball is here now! Let me introduce Cooper, our 9 week-old  Australian Shepherd puppy.  He’s as gentle as they come.  He has a good dose of energy, it’s a dog that loves to play and that’s exactly what I was looking for.  He adapted really well to our family and routine. So far, so good.

He gives us a massive amount of love, and the boys are in love with him.  I must be honest and admit that the first few days weren’t the “honeymoon” I expected. The constant hovering over the dog to watch if he had peed or pooped, munched on furniture, put something in his mouth he shouldn’t was overwhelming. I think I suffered a bout of Post Puppy depression (as pointed out by a friend).  This is a real thing.  You ask yourself : ” Why did I do this?” I made the biggest mistake of my life, and I’m stuck with that creature who depends on me and feels like a stranger for a good fifteen years. Thankfully, the love comes back after a few days, the strong bond you were wishing for is created and the puppy settles in your own routine, not the other way around.

So, after all the doubts comes the light.  Now, all that’s left is to enjoy the puppy days, with it’s challenges, but mostly with it’s rewards.

Meet Cooper, the best (and cutest) puppy there is!

Cooper

Cooper

Cooper

 

This post is part of our Sisterhood Stories blog circle, please click on the button and move to the next blog.

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Sisterhood Stories – Eleven

You’re going to be 11 on St. Patrick’s  Day.  My little  good luck charm as I so often call you. It’s true, since you came into my life, you only brought smiles, light and so much love.  You still hug me as tight.  You still kiss me good morning and goodnight.  You are my serious and responsible one.  You always choose what’s right and fair, you put others before yourself.  You are wise for your age.  But, in all that seriousness, sometimes you allow a little silliness to show.  That’s when the light you carry shines the brightest.  The twinkle in your eye, the goofy smile, it’s all there, and it’s all good.

I sometimes worry that you forget about yourself, and do things to please others, neglecting your own little desires and needs.  They’re important, you know.  I’m all for respect, my sweet boy, but you do have to show up for your own dreams as well.  And I will keep reminding you, don’t worry.  That’s my job and I plan to do it well, you deserve it.

You are a lot like me.  You can’t stand socks, removing them as soon as you enter the house.  I keep finding stray socks everywhere.  Mine and yours!  You aren’t a social animal, and you’re okay with that.  I respect your boundaries, I understand how you can feel.  I’ve been there, I’m still often there.  We can duck under the covers together, it’s warm and cozy, perfect for us.

Before you grow up too fast, I just want you to know how much I love you.  Just the way you are.  Time spent with you is the greatest gift you can give me, I do learn a lot from you. You are becoming an amazing boy, a natural, gentle leader.  One who cares and never disregards anyone’s feelings.  I think your light will shine far and wide my love, just give it time, you have plenty.  I will stand by your side for as long as you need me to.

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This post is part of our Sisterhood Stories blog circle.  Please click on the button to visit the next blog in the lineup, and leave some love along the way…

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Colors of 2013 with Eva Ricci Studio – September in Brown

I’m lucky to belong to a special group of ladies who were challenged, at the beginning of this year, by Eva Ricci Studio to create a monthly color themed portfolio of images.  It’s my honor this month to showcase the collages created by the fine artists in this group.

September was Brown.  Earthy, organic, warm, cozy, spicy and sweet, all the goodness of the brown tones assembled in one post.  Right here.  How can one not like this?

Here we go…

Robin Brenner McQuay Anderson

Amalia Ferreira-Espinoza / AFE Images

Karrie Brewer Drake / Karrie Drake Photography

Bonnie Smith

Sharon Surman

Nelleke Glasbergen

Alana Gillett

Ana Alejandra Colotti

Michele Catino /  CatinoCreations.com  /  CatinoCreations.etsy.com

 Sylvia Cook Photography / Etsy Blog

Kelly Newbury / Kelly*n Photography

Mary Carroll / Etsy / Website
Diana Taylor

Aina Sæle Apelthun / Blog

Janice Darby

Sharon Collins / Blog

Sue Zellers / 500px /Facebook

Judith Kimber / Facebook /Etsy

Katerina Vodrazkova / Etsy

Sarah Melvin / Etsy / Facebook / Website

Eva Ricci Studio / Facebook

Laura Evans / Facebook

Jean Ladzinski Photography / Etsy

Kathryn Belanger  / Etsy  / Blog 

Andrea McClain / Etsy

Carrie Gault

Me 🙂

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It takes more than two minutes

Fine art, still life, and even food photography is often discredited by others in the industry.  They tend to believe it’s easy, and that these photographs don’t require a lot of time, planning or attention.  Well, I tend to disagree.

Take this cherry photo, how much time did I spend on it?

I may not have travelled around the globe for it or waited until the planets aligned to get it.  I didn’t spend weeks sending emails back and forth and an evening selling my services.  But it took time.

I went to the grocery store and saw the beautiful, ripe, plump cherries, inspiration hit.  Now what?

I start by doing some research.  Yes. I checked what I had already done with cherries in the past, don’t want to repeat the same compositions over and over again don’t we?  Then, I check what others have done, it serves as much as inspiration as to validate your ideas.  And you want to make sure you don’t end up with the same compositions.  Cherries in a teacup? Everyone did it.  I did it too.  But what can I do so mine’s different?  Tricky.  And time consuming.

Now that I have my ideas (many ideas), might as well make the most of these cherries and shoot lots of different images.

Okay, time to grab my props.  If you’re a thrift shop addict like me, you may have a large selection on hand.  If not?  Find some, empty your cupboards, go shopping.  Time’s a wastin’…

Haven’t used these props in a while, they need to be dusted and washed before using.  Tick, tock…

Got everything? If you shoot in natural light most of the time like me, find your best light.  Mine’s outside, in the shadow by the vegetable patch.   If you need to set up lighting gear, it’s time. Test your light, adjust…

Set up what you need, backdrops, linens, props, etc.

Now shoot away!  Click, click!

Done?  Took you more than three seconds  to build a decent, nicely composed, properly exposed series didn’t it ? One you will be proud to show.

Think you’re done already?  You’re wrong!  You need to put everything back.  Your shot involved food?  Props need to be cleaned yet again.

And there’s the editing, of course.  So how much time did it took?  A whole morning.  Sure, I have many images now (and they’re not all edited yet), but it did take time.  And it is a process, a more complex process than it looks like.

Fine art photography isn’t a snapshot dump.  It’s art.  It’s creative.  It requires time, knowledge, skill and passion.  It’s beautiful and worth pursuing.  It’s photography, just as any other type of photography.