All posts tagged Still Life

What Happened

Well, I warned you it would happen.  I was hoping to get through a whole month posting each and every day, but I fell just short.  And really, I blame Harry Potter.  Oh, and my sinuses.  My guess is that eventually (as in right around August 18th when school is back in session) my posts will become less frequent.  My goal is to still update every couple of days at least.  However, for now, I promise to be better.

6:30 Photo of the Day

One super notable thing did happen while I was away though: I discovered cherries.  Previous to Saturday evening, my only experience with this fruit came in the dye-saturated, jarred format.  Yech!  So when I was offered some of the real deal on Saturday, I didn’t have high expectations.  What a difference though!  Instead of being laden with syrup and rubbery, the fresh variety is crisp and barely sweet.  They actually remind me a great deal of grapes, without the tartness.  This may be one of may favorite finds of the year.  The added bonus?  They’re lovely little things, visually.  I love the color, shape, and size.  I expect you’l be seeing more of them here.

Glee Full

Okay, time for a confession: I spent most of yesterday curled up in my bed watching the episodes of “Glee” I missed at the end of the season.  Yes, “Glee”, and I may have even shed a tear when “To Sir, With Love” was sang during the season finale.  I’m not proud of it, but I’m not wholly ashamed either.  I love the show and there are much worse things I could be watching.  Plus, I was having some sinus issues yesterday and any excuse to stay dormant was a welcome one.

6:27 Photo of the Day

It seems only fitting then, that the only picture posted today is one of the lamp on my nightstand.  It was a fairly dismal day yesterday, full of rain showers and clouds, which I didn’t mind in the least.  Due to my malfunctioning sinuses, I had no desire whatsoever to venture outdoors and it made staying in my warm bed all the more cozy.  The lamp lets off a nice, subdued glow, giving the image a rich, suffusive feel.  It’s all I have to offer for the day.  As my sinuses have seemed to master themselves for the moment, I am hopeful that today will be a more productive, or at least, mobile day.

The List

It has not been a banner week for shooting.  I think it is closely related to my general apathy towards most everything the past few days.  Call it the mid-summer blues if you will, I just don’t have a lot of get-up and go at the moment.  Yesterday’s shots weren’t taken until well into the evening even though I carried my camera around with me most of the day.

6:26 Photo of the Day

Hopefully, I will find the energy to crawl back onto the horse soon as a good chunk of summer remains, as does my to-do list.  Today is starting overcast and cool: perfect conditions for starting an art project or curling up on the couch with a movie and my knitting.  You might be wondering why the heck I mentioned my to-do list if I’m just going to ignore it and knit.  And that’s why I love my to-do list, because I put knitting on it.  I hate it because I also put less-than-fun things on it like cleaning out the den closet, as well.  If you’re beginning to think that this is a serious list and that I am a huge dork that relies on said list pretty heavily, well, you’re getting the idea.

6:26 Runner Up 6-26 Runner Up 2 6:26 Runner Up 3

Progression

I had no idea what I was going to photograph yesterday.  Some fleeting thoughts about meandering through a park occurred to me early on in the day, but were quickly pushed out of the way when the opportunity to go to a movie with Dylan arose.  So much for Tuesday’s thoughts about priorities.  By late afternoon I was just waiting for a photographic moment to come up and kick me in the shins, which is exactly what I tell my students not to do.  I say all this stuff about going out and finding photographs in the world around you and being an active participant in the photographic process.  And I mean it, I really do.  I just forgot yesterday, that’s all. Then, when I least expected it, inspiration came breezing through in the form of my early evening snack.

6:24 Start

Yep, it all started with an apple (which seems like a highly biblical statement as well, but I don’t really mean for it to be that loaded).  I was pretty happy to find this apple actually, seeing as how I didn’t think we had any left and I was craving apple slices and peanut butter something fierce.  So maybe that’s why I decided to photograph it; I can’t really say where the impetus came from to be honest.  I thought I’d take a few, quick shots of the apple and then maybe some other shots later in the evening.  I mean, I had snacking to get to, ladies and gents.  But then this happened:

6:24 Step 2 6:24 Step 3

It isn’t totally unusual for me to photograph my food though.  About three or four years ago, I made a cookbook as part of a school project.  I tried out different recipes, wrote about the process and photographed the results.  I was surprised at how much I enjoyed food photography, but really I shouldn’t have been.  Cooking and baking have long been interests of mine, as has photography.  Combining the two should be fun, and it really is.  I just haven’t done a lot of it in the years that have elapsed between my cookbook project and my experiments this summer.

6:24 Step 5 6:24 Step 4

Once I had freed the apple slices from the corer/slicer tool, it was like having my own mini-still life.  My little white cutting board provided a nice contrast to the dark background and was also neutral.  Color does play an important role in food photography.  The food is your subject matter, therefore, you don’t want it competing with a lot.  If you have busy china patterns or countertops or the colors of these things clash with the food, it can spell disaster.  It always good to be mindful of the things that inhabit the backgrounds of your photos, but I find it of special import in food photography.

6:24 Photo of the Day

This is my favorite shot from the day, I think because of the way the apple core just peeks into the photo at the bottom right.  The angle of the stem seems to give it a little personality, too.  A shallow depth of field (which is why it’s in strong focus in the front and the apples behind it are blurry) give a nice contrast between the fore and back grounds.  The only problem?  That really was my last apple and now I’m going to need to buy more as this post has made me hungry.

Last Impression

Sitting in the air-o-port, posting.  I am pleased to say that there is free and abundant wi-fi, which is kind of the highlight of my morning.  It’s been a “Meh” final 24-hours in Albuquerque, which is fairly common for me at the end of a trip.  I think it’s a good sign that I am always happy to head home at the end of a journey; it means I am happy with my normal life, however much I sometimes wish for a more extraordinary existence.  We made one final photo-specific stop yesterday morning, the quirky Aztec Motel, which has been decorated with a variety of odds and ends.  This was another recommendation (Thanks again, Matylda!) and well worth enduring the heat while we wandered around the somewhat eccentric sculpture and wall decor.

6:20 Photo of the Day

It is always a pleasure to find unlikely combinations of color, texture and material in the same space.  It lends a great deal of visual interest to the photograph, and the stark lighting of New Mexico didn’t hurt either.  While the motel looked slightly less than habitable, it was a treasure-trove of mini still lifes just waiting to be discovered and examined more closely.  I probably could have spent another couple of hours or so fiddling around with my camera, but for oppressive heat and numerous “No Trespassing” signs posted.  We did try to get permission to photograph, but couldn’t find anyone to actually ask.

6:20 Runner Up 1 today1 6:20 Runner Up 2

So I felt kind of shifty photographing anyhow.  If you haven’t noticed yet, I’m sort of a play-by-the-rules sort of gal.  I couldn’t see the harm in photographing though, as I had no ill intent behind my actions.  I really just wanted to explore the space, so in the end, I convinced myself that my intent was pure and therefore, perfectly justifiable.  Like I’ve said numerous times before, I’m such a dork.

Just Wait

I don’t like to think of myself as the pessimistic sort. In fact, I generally see myself as a “half full” kind of gal. Just thought I’d share that with you before I completely contradict myself. At some point, you see, I’m going to disappoint you. I’m here to tell you that with absolute certainty. Of course, that’s assuming that your every happiness depends on my daily posting, which it totally does, right? I’m sure that at this very moment, there’s at least one of you that’s thinking, “Whoa. She’s posted everyday for five days in a row…it’s madness! Utter madness!”.   And given my track record, I’m right there with you: surprised, shocked and even a little wary of the whole thing. So, I figured it’d be a good idea to get it over with, rip the band aid off, if you will, and just let you know right now that there will be a day that I don’t photograph at all. And maybe don’t even post at all (gasp!). Maybe not today. Maybe not tomorrow…but maybe tomorrow. I actually thought it was going to be today.

6:4 Photo of the Day

I didn’t feel so hot yesterday.  I was queasy, achy and really a bit of a mess, overall.  I wasn’t interested in food, so you know I couldn’t have cared less about photography.   I was prepared to just post some old photo and call it new, because really – who would have known? But then, like the trooper I am, I pulled it together and managed to press a button at least once for y’all.   I’m not saying it’s my best work, but at least it’s here.  And some days, that’s all you can do.