Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Playing with the camera again

The ArtCGirlz decided a while back we would all like to learn more about using our cameras to get better pictures we can use in our art.  So MaryLee Suggested this book.  I was a bit disappointed to find it is not a photography book, telling what the settings on my camera to use in which situations, but a guide for using photography creatively.  I can use help in that area as well, so I started reading and went on to lesson one, called 30 in 30.   
The idea is to take one picture every minute, using your cell phone, for 30 minutes.  So I took my phone on my walk around the campus.  The lesson ends by suggesting you create a collage of your photos.  So this is my 30 in 30 collage.  I didn't use all 30 photos, obviously.

At our meeting last week, Lori was explaining a bit about the settings on our cameras, since she is sort of our resident camera guru.   She sent us out to take a few pictures, using a specific mode on the camera and only changing one other setting to see what worked best for us.  It turns out my photos were not of things that show off this setting.  But I took a few I liked.  We meet at the college, so they are similar to my 30 in 30.

I spent some time admiring the students' work in the Lobby Gallery of the arts building. 
"Radiance" by Victoria Snyder

"Into the Books" by Nicole Crossett

The next day, at home, I took some pictures using the same settings.
I can see the difference now! 
 (The plant is the focal point.  See how the chair is blurrier in the first picture?)

So, YAY!!,I have learned something new!  Thanks, Lori!

 I read today that Cornell University has recently completed a Solar Array they hope will provide up to 1% of the power for the college. While that doesn't sound like much, it is the equivalent of 320 homes!  News like this gives me hope. 
If you want to know more about climate policy, climate news- good or bad- check out ecowatch.com

I am grateful for:
Every time someone lets me know they read my blog.  (thanks!)
Making it home safely in the worst snowstorm I have had to drive in for a very long time!
Friends who try to understand and are willing to put up with me.
Molly might finally be ready to go to her forever home!
Chocolate chip cookies.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Wait- what season is it?

 We had one of those nice warm autumn days last week, where I finally got outside to finish up in the gardens.  Now, don't for an instant believe my gardens are well tended at this point in the year. I pretty much give up on them most years around the middle of September.  (In hot summers it's mid-August!)  But I still go out and mulch the perennials, plant a mum or two, maybe transplant something, and clean up the decorations. 
Much to my surprise, some of the perennials have decided it's not too late to put on a show!
My Hellebore is either very early or very late.  (It blossomed in the spring, too)

I don't think this Foxglove will have time to blossom fully before we have a freeze.  I only hope it will be back in the spring!

Perennial aster/ bachelor buttons.  As long as you keep cutting them back, they will keep blossoming!
(see the Zebrinas peeking out from under the deck?)

Too bad the hummingbirds and butterflies are gone for the year.  The bumblebees are happy, though.

By the way, only days after I took these pictures, we had a bit of snow on the ground.

 Now that my busy busy month is over, I can start sewing again- and not because I have to (although I do have some deadlines coming....of course.)

A friend asked me to make hobo bags for her daughters. One wanted lime green and pink (MY kinda kid!) the other wanted "rasta" colors.  This was what I found on my trip to Denver, PA. 
It's made with this pattern, from Quilt woman.com

Look on the design wall in the background above the striped bag.  Those are blocks made using a Paula Nadelstern pattern and the leftovers from the lime green bag.  I can't wait!!!!

I am also working a bit on my entry for the guild's annual challenge , a new bed skirt for the guest room, and a gift or two.  I could get so much more done if my husband didn't expect to be fed every day!

Yesterday I walked into the nursery and found this.....
Fortunately I had the camera right near the door, so I could grab a picture before they got up.  I have only had these guys a few days.  Aren't they sweet?  I named them Matt and Ben.

Renewable energy sources are gaining!  We have to keep making our voices heard until the fossil fuel companies have no choice but to get out of the way or join us!

I am grateful for:
Catching my breath.
Time to go on a "date" with my hubby.
"The Judge"- how can you not love a movie starring Robert Duvall and Robert Downey Jr.!?
I helped send 4 kitties to their "furever" homes last Saturday.
I recently had a nice "gramma day" with Kiara.