Stopped by Fernwood again to check on the trillium, which have not quite bloomed still, so I took a few shots of a lovely little spring in the woods that leads into the St. Joseph river. Wish I could have recored the sound of the spring and included it hear for you all; I could have sat and listened to that all day.
Wednesday, March 30, 2011
One of the major perks of using myself as a model when I'm in a pinch is how much more comfortable I feel in front of the camera and in general with my appearance. I've never been a very confident person, and I don't necessarily feel more confident now, but I feel like I've really started to make peace with myself. It's the difference between, "I really love my nose!" and "Eh, my nose is okay, and it's mine so I guess I like it". One thing I was realizing though as I was talking with a friend about this new comfort of mine, is that in all the other photos I've done of myself (with the exception maybe of "Finding my own smile") I was just using myself because I was the most available human being around. If someone else had been around and willing, I would have totally used them instead. Not only would it have been easier (no timer!) but I would have probably been more comfortable and happier with the results. So in light of this realization, I decided to take a portrait of myself tonight. Not to use myself to illustrate a concept or tell a story. Just me. And this was hard for me. Hard to look straight into the camera. Hard to process the raw image and come up with a finished product without over thinking it. I didn't really expect that, I thought this would be cake. So I guess I've still got a ways to go with this confidence thing; it is a good thing I'm an aspiring photographer and not an aspiring model!
Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Josie got her first library book today. I haven't been comfortable letting her take any books home until now, and actually she hasn't been that interested, but she fell in love with this book today. She was laughing so enthusiastically at her favorite page ("Chick poops" of course) that she had all the librarians in the place laughing with her. So we brought "Chick" home, and later on it inspired her to want to write her first word. I'm sure she will be thrilled 10 years from now when I'm telling all her friends that the first word she ever wrote was "poop" (pictured below). So this post isn't very challenging in the photography department, but hey, I'm a parent and every once and a while I just get excited about how my child is developing and want to share that excitement a bit. And since (I guess) I'm a photographer now, what better way to share it than through photos.
Monday, March 28, 2011
Okay, so these seedlings (and these photos) aren't very impressive, but I'm excited about the prospect of actually growing my own vegetables from seed this year and I'm tired and on my way to bed, so a few quick shots of these little guys seemed like a good solution for tonight. I feel a little bad, I'm pretty sure these sprouted yesterday, which was a very busy day for me, but I didn't notice until this morning so they didn't get any light right away. So they look a little leggy. I'll have to consult my girl Gayla over at "You Grow Girl" for what to do in this situation. I hope to post some more photos of my seedlings in a few weeks when they've grown up a bit. (Oh, and by the way, yes these are planted in toilet paper tubes, one of the many brilliant and thrifty ideas I got from the book "Grow Great Grub".)
Sunday, March 27, 2011
If I ever stop being almost moved to tears by a beautiful sunset I think I will know it is time for me to die. My reaction to sunsets can be pretty intense sometimes, not long ago I had such an outburst of excitement looking out my living room window at an intense red sunset that my husband came running convinced that there must be a bear or a cougar or something in our backyard. This one was shot on my way home from Dhanwantari's second Seva event serving dinner at Hope Ministries. I took way too many shots, and wandered way to far out into this field; my fingers were actually purple when I got back in my car (we've had a sudden cold spell here). I hadn't even noticed I was cold until then, when I tried to get my car keys out of my pocket and my fingers wern't working right. I can't wait until warmer weather!
Saturday, March 26, 2011
I say sculpture, but maybe not everyone appreciates stumps as much as me (by the way, I think they deserve a much cooler name than "stump"). I found this beauty while driving around late this afternoon looking for something to photograph. I was hoping for some pretty evening light, but it got cloudy and hazy as the day went on, which made it difficult. I finally stopped on a section of road that was higher than the surrounding forest, which was dotted with these little pools of water. I tried some more wide shots to give a feeling of the whole place (which made me think of the "wood between the worlds") but in the dreary light it was a no go. Luckily I found stumpy here (see, horrible name!) and did my best to capture how beautiful it was, though to do a proper job I'd probably have to head back to this spot with some waders and get a little closer.
Friday, March 25, 2011
Thursday, March 24, 2011
"Portrait of an activist mother?". Well in that post I mentioned that she is working on a book for children about breastfeeding older children, and today we got together to work on a rough draft of sorts. Since we were trying to get all the shots we needed in one afternoon it was a little challenging and I'd definitely like a second shot at some of them, but I think the concept is great and it was really fun to help with. I love the writing; I think Jen did a wonderful job keeping it concise while still getting across a lot of important points. I could really imagine reading this to a toddler, but it also being a good tool for educating adults too (Jen plans to include a short section in the back with some information for grown ups). Anyway, it's been a fun day and great to work on a project with a partner for a change!
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
I've been wanting to try some shots like this ever since I first looked at Heather's blog, which has several gorgeous shots using curtains and just the light from a window. I like the result, though I think I'd like to try again on a day when the light is a bit more intense (cloudy, rainy day here in lovely Michigan).
I like the ghostly/science fiction quality of this image, especially in the hand. I imagine this being to be someone on "the other side" or some sort of clone. Or to be more metaphorical, this could represent the veils we all hide behind; how we don't really see each other. As I'm writing this I'm starting to think I'd like to explore this idea further. I love that about art, how it's not linear; how you can start in one place and end up somewhere you didn't expect and also see other paths leading off in completely different directions. It's like being an explorer.
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Hello lovely people, had a little trouble finding something visually interesting in my house tonight, but after a couple of flops I set my sights on an antique sewing table that I'm using for a nightstand at the moment. This shot is a close up of the foot pedal. Not the greatest subject ever, but I find the pattern of the circles kind of pleasing.
Oh, and while I'm on the subject of my sewing table and I have an audience, I'm curious to know what you all think of this photo below. It is a shot of one of the drawer pulls, and I think it bears a remarkable resemblance to... hmm, maybe I'd like to get your opinion first before I tell you what I think. Any thoughts?
Monday, March 21, 2011
Sunday, March 20, 2011
At the end of the day, nothing is better than a cup of tea and a long talk with a good friend. Roger was happy to come right over when I called, and let me bounce ideas off of him, all while being very encouraging and supportive. Will this elephant always be there for his friends? Roger That.
(By the way, if you've not had the pleasure of meeting Roger before, you might want to check out these earlier posts: Seeker of Divine Knowledge, Late night snack, Roger's big date, Roger's new job, and Suesspiration.)
Saturday, March 19, 2011
In between running errands today Josie and I stopped by Fernwood for a little walk, and I was surprised to find spring already well underway there. The gardens were bursting with snowdrops, little tiny irises, and I think the yellow ones may be some sort of buttercups. Out in the woods the trillium were just starting to come up, I'll have to get back in a few days for some shots; I try to make sure I see the trillium in bloom every year but I've never taken any photos of them.
For any of you who read the comment thread to my last post and hopefully watched the video recommended by the lovely Misha, you may know that I'm experiencing some hesitation and doubts about taking on more ambitious creative endeavors. I suppose I should feel good in a way; I felt the same way about starting this blog just a couple of months ago and now have come to a point where this doesn't feel challenging anymore (today's post is a good example of that, nice pictures, but nothing new or difficult for me). But now, as I think about ways to make this project more worthwhile or about starting something new, I slip right back into my old habit of "just thinking about it". Today is never the right day to start, and tomorrow never ends up being that day either. And though I don't want to admit it to myself most of the time, that comes from a fear of failure, and a (false, I know, I know) belief that in general I'm not anything special anyway. I've got to get past this, and I think I need to use a similar format to what has helped me be successful in the blog: deadlines! Apparently I need them even though I sort of detest them.
So, in the next week I hope to introduce a idea I've had to add something a little different here and there on this blog, and in other more personal projects I'm going to try setting some short term goals (and make sure that I tell someone about them, yeah accountability). But, to any of you regular readers, I would also really appreciate any suggestions or ideas for mini photo related projects; maybe something you've tried in the past or been meaning to try yourself. I so appreciate all of you for all your comments and for being my reason to post everyday, thank you.
Friday, March 18, 2011
Spent much of tonight finishing up the set for the high school theatre production at the school where my husband works. We actually met working together at a little community theatre, and now that he works as the technical director for the school theatre program. While my husband is a whiz with anything that requires electricity or is mechanical in any way, he is practically color blind and prefers to leave the artsy fartsy stuff to someone else, which is where I come in. I really love it most of the time, and while this set wasn't my favorite I think it will work okay (the show is actually a Beatles review, so the set was sort of a Pepperland inspired landscape, hence the crazy flowers). Even though every time I work on a show I swear the next time I will be disciplined and get done early, I have yet to accomplish this. So here is me, burning the midnight oil to get things done in time, typing this post with paint speckled hands. It is days like this that I am grateful I left this project open enough that I can just snap a picture of whatever I am doing and call it a day if I have too. But on the other hand, I just finished taking in Misha's awesome story and the images she created to go with it and am feeling like I could do more, and that I might have stories to tell too.
Thursday, March 17, 2011
Finally, finally, finally, Josie and I got to go back to our favorite place this afternoon, the park! We practically live at the park (and by "the park" I mean one of 5 or 6 of our favorite parks around the area) in good weather, so it feels like we have been waiting forever for it to be nice enough to go back. I didn't take too many shots because I was too busy playing myself (sometimes I'm not sure who enjoys it more, me or my kid), but got a couple of neat ones while she was swinging with a look of absolute joy on her face. I loved it when she would throw her head back and close her eyes, I remember doing exactly that as a kid. Such a great feeling.
The skies were really dramatic this afternoon too, which is unusual for the middle of the day in the Midwest. Never did rain, though it looked like it might for awhile. Maybe the weather gods knew they would have to face the wrath of Josephine if they forced her to leave the park early!
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
I've been trying to resist the urge to go out and take pictures of my tulips coming up because I didn't want to be a complete copycat of next2hector who has a lovely shot of tulips on his blog, but I could resist no more. I was so excited though to see how they were actually pushing through the leaves (carelessly left by me there last fall) like little spring torpedoes!
While I was busy with the tulips, Josie was making some nature discoveries of her own. She was "climbing" all over a little Redbud tree in our yard and picked a few seed pods off. She came running to me all excited and wanted to know what they were. After I explained that they were seeds that grow into trees, she took it upon herself to pick as many pods off as she could reach and "plant" them all over the yard.
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Well, today I turned the big 27. A friend of mine dubbed this day the "Ides of Meg" a few years ago and now that is what I prefer to call it instead of my birthday. Much more dramatic. Everyone kept asking me today things like, "Starting to feel old, arn't you?" or "Getting pretty close to thirty, huh?" I don't know why, but this birthday felt so weird to me; I think I feel younger today if that makes any sense. What I mean is my perspective seems to have shifted a bit in the last year or so, and now I see just how young 27 is. I feel like I have a lot of living left to do, and a lot of learning for that matter.
Oh, and the title of this post comes from the fact that I was thinking I might do something with 27 candles since I can't remember the last time I actually saw as many candles as I was old lit up for my birthday, but alas we didn't have near enough even with several open packages in the junk drawer. I guess that made me feel a little old.
Monday, March 14, 2011
Whew, cutting it a little close tonight! I know what you all are thinking, Meg couldn't think of anything else so she decided on a semi-nude photo of herself. Well, that's not so! I actually had an idea in mind for tonight, and it has to do with a line from a song that that has jumped out at me the last few times I've heard it. You see, the yoga practice I go to on Thursday nights is my favorite for several reasons, but one of the main ones is definitely the music that is played, and the last couple of weeks the teacher has played this wonderful song with great lyrics. I wish I new who the artist was to credit for this line (I've been meaning to ask but keep forgetting), or even the title of the song, but the line that I find so great in this song is, "she carries the world on her hips". Ashamedly I haven't even paid enough attention to the rest of the song to know who the "she" is, but I love this line anyway. I've been thinking of the "she" as all of us women, and maybe more specifically mothers, but even women who have not actually birthed children take on the role of nurturer all the time. So maybe the "she" is the divine feminine in all of us, carrying the weight of the world on our hips the way a mother carries her children. Like a beautiful, female Atlas, but who takes on this "burden" not as a punishment but as a labor of love.
So this was my attempt to illustrate this idea at least a bit, and to try to do so without "exposing" too much of myself online. I really need to find some willing models so I don't have to worry so much about everyone thinking I'm just an exhibitionist!
Sunday, March 13, 2011
My husband and our niece Noelle exchange "a knowing look" during Sunday dinner tonight at my mother-in-laws house. I love that our family has this tradition of getting together once a week; this was not something I grew up with but have really come to appreciate.
I wonder what each of them was thinking as they exchanged this look. They seem to be sharing some private joke or moment together.