Friday, October 11, 2013

Friday Favorites!


Phew! I need a moment to breathe. Life is BUSY around here with new work-from-home prospects. 

Favourite Article:  It's been a while - I use Feedly, and only got to this article this morning... What I Want my Son to Know... powerful stuff! Being a parent pulls at my heart in ways I never thought possible. I have a daughter, not a son, but I have some similar sentiments for my little girl.

Favourite Recipe: It's a toss-up this week! With Canadian Thanksgiving this weekend, I am on "dessert" duty. Yum Yum! I'm trying out this little gem - Frozen Toblerone Mousse Squares and ALSO making my nephew's favorite dessert, Apple Pie! I'll be using this crust recipe - Perfect Pie Crust (this has been my go-to since we've been married; I've used it for sweet and savory pies. So delicious!) May I just skip the turkey and go straight to dessert?!

Favourite Outfit: This is one from a few weeks ago - but as a teacher, I must say, I LOVE these ideas! Ask BB: What Are Some Stylish Looks for A Substitute Teacher?

Favourite Photo: Sunrise Below Eiffel Tower ... I am trying to look at the world differently these days. Those different perspectives sure keep life interesting! Although I "travelled" up the tower, I took the classic tourist shots rather than the creative ones. That's okay.. I'll be back one day!

Favourite Verse: My new Bible Study is a Priscilla Shier/Beth Moore/Kay Arthur combo on the life of David. WOW. Love it! David fascinates me for so many reasons - probably the greatest is because of how I view his life and yet how GOD used him in spite of his short-comings. Such a lesson in judgement for me - He sees the heart. He sees the motives.. So many fantastic verses...
1 Chronicles 14:8 When the Philistines heard that David had been anointed king over all Israel, they went up in full force to search for him, but David heard about it and went out to meet them.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Quiet on here is actually a good thing...

...because I have been using my camera LIKE A CRAZY PERSON. I have taken ridiculous numbers of photos in the last 2 weeks, but WOW. I have come a LONG way. I didn't actually skip the other days, I just didn't spend the time on making a post for each of them because I've been practicing instead, which I think is better. In the mean time, here are some of my shots from practicing with "manual"...

I love summer. I wish it were summer all.the.time.

I now know the difference between wheat and barley. This is a big deal for a city girl turned country.

This is a steer. Not a cow. I also know the difference between a cow, a bull and a steer. I'll spare you the details though.

I got brave and switched to manual focus...this was my first attempt. I think it says a lot considering where I've come from...

Dandelion #1...

Dandelion #2. Ooo! So very cool.

I have also been photographing my daughter like crazy. Maybe one of these days I'll get some photos of her on here too. 





Friday, August 16, 2013

Friday night date :)

It's been quiet around these parts, mostly due to VBS at our church (I was the snack coordinator). Between feeding nearly 40 hungry campers each day, and keeping an eye on Baby Girl, I had my hands full. How do working moms do it?!

But, as Friday night rolled around, I had a craving for a Pizookie ... and while I didn't have the right-sized round pan, my square Pyrex did just fine. mmm. Loved an impromptu date night with the hubster! 


Friday Favs!


Favourite Article: This Post is for the Brave Ones Challenge accepted! I am taking one small, symbolic and simple step with this blog.

Favourite Recipe: Pizookie! mmm. Great idea for a date night :)

Favourite Outfit: Reese Witherspoon ... one of my favourite actresses. A classy lady all around.

Favorite Photo: Kitten enjoys bubbles So cute and such wonder.

Favourite Verse
Mark 6:30-32 -- this verse came up a few times this week. It feels like I'm being "gently" prodded and reminded about going to that quiet place.

The apostles gathered around Jesus and reported to him all they had done and taught. Then, because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, he said to them, “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.”  So they went away by themselves in a boat to a solitary place.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Day 21 - Elements of Composition


As part of being more intentional with this blog, with my life, with my passions, I want to work towards this:
I will be chronicling my journey on my blog and I'm looking forward to the end result!***Day 21 - Elements of Composition ... ooo! I've talked about these before in my Film Studies portion of the curriculum. Darcy includes some very cool examples... now I'm going to go back and comb through some of my photos and see if I have some examples?! 

I have found a few... and will need to look for more, or better yet, use the new skills I have to take some more! I guess it leaves something to work on!

1. Filling your frame

2. Simple backgrounds


3. Rule of Thirds – place points of focus at thirds rather than center, center on the x- and y-axis.

4. Patterns - repetition of lines or elements




5. Depth of Field – use focus to draw the eye to your subject

6. Framing of your subject – using elements in the photo to make a natural frame

7. Lines – using horizontals, verticals or diagonals to emphasize your subject

8. Use of Negative Space (“White Space”) – open space brings the eye where you want it

9. Symmetry – use mirrored or repetitive geometry to create balance

Day 20 - Art in Photography


As part of being more intentional with this blog, with my life, with my passions, I want to work towards this:

I will be chronicling my journey on my blog and I'm looking forward to the end result!
***
Day 20 - Art in Photography ... yes! This is what I love... I want my photos to tell stories.  I'm excited about the last 1/3 of this 31-Day series. I must admit, some of my favourite photos have come from my phone... it is all about the moment some times.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Day 19 - When Natural Light Won't Cut It


As part of being more intentional with this blog, with my life, with my passions, I want to work towards this:

I will be chronicling my journey on my blog and I'm looking forward to the end result!
***

Day 19 - When Natural Light Won't Cut It ... I have definitely come a long way from my point-and-shoot days. I am working hard to avoid my flash too!! It's amazing how tweaking components of "the triangle" are helping me with this. Unfortunately a new flash is not in the budget, so I will make do with what I have. I will try to search the internet for some "creative" lighting solutions too if I must shoot indoors!

Day 18 - What Camera Do You Have?


As part of being more intentional with this blog, with my life, with my passions, I want to work towards this:

I will be chronicling my journey on my blog and I'm looking forward to the end result!
***

Oh - this post has my name written all over it. I am struggling with contentment. BIG TIME. There are so many things that I want at the moment...

I want a house in the country, but we live in town. For my husband's sake, my daughter's sake, my sake, I need to be content and I need to make this our HOME. 

I want a stunning wardrobe that is stylish. Right now, we're on a tight budget and shopping for new clothes is not making the cut. I need to be creative with what I have. I have some basic sewing skills, a sewing machine and plenty of inspiration from the internet. This will do.

My "wants" could go on forever... I often forget to be thankful for the many blessings from God in my life - my loving family, sturdy roof over our heads, good clothes, plenty of food...etc, but I'm keeping it real. This is my struggle.

But in the midst of this, I need to remember the things I want won't make me happy... and the things I want won't magically transform our situation or my heart.  I long for that country home, but I think more than that, I long for a simple, unhurried life. Um, hello? If I can't work towards that here and now, then I'll never accomplish it there and then. 

I want to be stylish because I think that it will somehow make me feel more confident and friendly (crazy, right?) ... but really, I have seen people who own expensive AND stylish clothes who are awkward and no one wants to be around them. 

Many of these wants have to do with matters of the heart... learning contentment with the lot in life that God has given to me. Slowing down. Revelling in the beauty of others. Being rather than doing.

But back to today's challenge - most recently seeing the beautiful cameras that people around me have...and wishing for a better camera... oh, this post was for me! 

So, what camera do I have? "The perfect one for this shot."


Day 17 - The Low Down on Lenses

As part of being more intentional with this blog, with my life, with my passions, I want to work towards this:

I will be chronicling my journey on my blog and I'm looking forward to the end result!
***

Day 17 - The Low Down on Lenses ... yup. I own the lenses that came with my basic dSLR. I did buy a 50mm a few years back, but that was simply because it was called the "cheapest" of the lenses, and it really is pretty cool. A REAL photog showed one to me and what it could do... now, hopefully, I'll learn to use it properly! 

Otherwise, I had to laugh at Darcy's term the "prosumer" because I totally know what those are and REALLY don't have the money to be one.... Maybe one day :)

Day 16 - Exposure Compensation




As part of being more intentional with this blog, with my life, with my passions, I want to work towards this:


I will be chronicling my journey on my blog and I'm looking forward to the end result!
***

Wow - I think this is half-way?! YAY! I feel like I'm really making progress and that I'm already a better photographer than I was when I started (I think some of that is because I'm no longer a manual virgin!)

Day 16 - Exposure Compensation ... so today's tutorial doesn't really strike a chord with me right now. I'll play with it (once my battery is re-charged!) but honestly, I don't know when I would use it. Though, as the video pointed out, I might need it on the beach or in the snow... since snow is much more likely around here, I'll definitely tuck it away in my tool belt of tricks!

And on to the next ... 

Day 15 - Histograms in the Field


As part of being more intentional with this blog, with my life, with my passions, I want to work towards this:

I will be chronicling my journey on my blog and I'm looking forward to the end result!
***
Day 15 - Histograms in the Field ... very interesting. I have seen this histogram setting many times, but never had any idea what it was all about. Until now! 

Fantastic reading too: Camera Histograms: Tones & Contrast. I'm a very visual - I need to SEE to understand. This article does a great job demonstrating the connection between histograms and photos. Now to go and check my photos from this weekend.

Shoot. Camera battery = dead. 

I'll have to wait for later!

Day 14 - HISTO-HUH? WHAT’S A HISTOGRAM?

As part of being more intentional with this blog, with my life, with my passions, I want to work towards this:


Source
I will be chronicling my journey on my blog and I'm looking forward to the end result!
***
I spent the last few days playing with my camera and using my baby girl for experiments... along with a roaring bonfire, but that's another story (photos to follow!) But back to program!

Day 14 - Histo-huh? What's a Histogram? Check! I know what a histogram is AND I know how to find it on my camera. I'm ahead of the game!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Day 13 - Setting Custom White Balance

As part of being more intentional with this blog, with my life, with my passions, I want to work towards this:




Source
I will be chronicling my journey on my blog and I'm looking forward to the end result!
***
Day 13 - Setting Custom White Balance ... this is the first day where I can't do this... I guess I can if I make a Gray Card, but not right now....

Friday, August 2, 2013

Friday Favs!

Ever since I was a kid, thinking about "my favourite things" has always caused me to break out into song. Thanks Maria! :)  While my favourite things don't really have much to do with raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens, here are some of my favourite reads from this week:

10 Myths about Introverts ... the picture is brilliant. I can totally relate. And oh yes, the list is perfect to send to some of my extroverted family members!

A Letter to Kate Middleton ... wow. Yes! I know lots of people have been posting this link all over the internet - it's brilliant. For every woman who has ever given birth and every woman who has ever felt uncomfortable in her own skin. 

One Book Out ... I feel the pain!

Man Tries to Sneak Pet Turtle on Plane by Disguising it as a Hamburger... yup, the title says it all, but it is bust-a-gut funny!

Day 12 - What's White Balance?

As part of being more intentional with this blog, with my life, with my passions, I want to work towards this:




Source
I will be chronicling my journey on my blog and I'm looking forward to the end result!
***
WOW WOW WOW - shooting in manual was VERY cool. I've been playing with it since yesterday and having a great time. I definitely can't shoot photos of my daughter inside without the flash if the curtain is closed.... she's TOO FAST!! I need to shoot at 1/125 at the minimum and she's still a blur!

Then today, I monkey'd with my white balance just as Darcy suggested in Day 12 - What's White Balance? ... WOW! I had no idea such a simple setting could change my photos so drastically. 


Thursday, August 1, 2013

Day 11 - Tips for Shooting Manually

As part of being more intentional with this blog, with my life, with my passions, I want to work towards this:




Source
I will be chronicling my journey on my blog and I'm looking forward to the end result!
***
AHH - I'm heading out to shoot using MANUAL... I have NEVER before used this setting on my camera. LOTS to learn here folks!

THANK YOU DARCY for your Day 11 - Tips for Shooting Manually ... 

  • Turn off your flash.
  • Set the ISO as low as possible, initially. Make that the last thing you adjust.
  • Shooting slowly often requires a tripod.
  • Kids and pets generally cannot freeze motion below 1/125sec (1/250+ is better), if you’re a Manual Mode Virgin – a bowl of fruit or vase of flowers might make your job a little easier.
  • If you have subjects on many planes that you want in focus, you need a smaller aperture. Start by keeping your aperture smaller than the number of subjects in the photo that are in different planes. I prefer to start with # of subject x 1.5 and go larger if I can pose them well. So if I have 4 people, 4 x 1.5 = 6. I like shoot at f/6.3 or greater as a starting point.
  • Learn the “Sunny 16 Rule”: On a sunny day, shoot at f/16 with a shutter speed of 1/ISO#. So ISO 100 at 1/100s or ISO 200 at 1/200s. For overcast days, the rule is “Cloudy 8″. Start at f/8 with a shutter speed of 1/ISO# as a guesstimate.
  • Focus on your subject when you’re metering. If you focus on the sky or shadows, your camera will meter the light for those areas rather than the subject(s).
  • Keep the in-camera meter on zero for the proper exposure.



Day 10 - Meter Maids - In Camera Metering

As part of being more intentional with this blog, with my life, with my passions, I want to work towards this:




Source
I will be chronicling my journey on my blog and I'm looking forward to the end result!
***
EUREKA!! THIS MAKES SENSE! Now that I'm figuring out how they fit together, things like F-stops are making sense!  VERY COOL.

Some highlights from Day 10 - Meter Maids - In Camera Metering...

Over-exposed? Have no fear! You can reduce the amount of light getting in easily by:
1) increasing the shutter speed (make it snap those photos faster!)
2) decrease the aperture (larger number = smaller aperture = wide depth of field ... basically MORE light comes in) 
3) decrease the ISO (in this case, decreasing is a good thing. Smaller ISO = less noise)

Under-exposed? This is my usual problem.... I can INCREASE the amount of light getting in by:
1) decreasing the shutter speed (though this can be tough if I'm not using a tripod.. I need to make sure I can hold that sucker steady if I'm getting into the super slow speeds...)
2) increase the aperture (smaller number = wider aperture = shallow depth of field ... basically less light comes in)
3) increase the ISO (BUT, this creates more noise, so this should be a last resort)


And oh yes, some important notes:

If your meter shows the image is underexposed and you are shooting a toddler – reducing the shutter speed would not be a good solution. If your meter shows the image is underexposed and you are shooting food on a tripod – reducing the shutter speed is a great solution.

If your meter shows the image is overexposed and you’re shooting a subject with a distracting background, decreasing the aperture will only emphasize the chaotic background when you bring more of it in focus.

ISO should be the last thing you increase, since increasing it creates destructive noise to your image.