Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Lake Worth street painting festival

Please bear with me as I am still exhausted from Sunday but I promised I'd get these photos up. I tried my best not to pick any that overlapped with the ones in the gallery but I had a few favorites I wanted to properly post-process.

lwsaf diptych 4
sketching music
work in progress
coloring hair

I absolutely love this one. Between her hat and the colors used in her flamingo, it just screams South Florida to me.
Floridian artist
This artist was really nice and genuinely wanted to talk to people about her piece.
meet the artist
She asked me if I could send her a photo of her artwork. And while we were talking, I caught her laughing and it was just too perfect.
silly pastels

I loved watching the artists work and since everyone was photographing them anyway, they pretty much ignored me and allowed me to capture them hard at work.
lwsaf diptych 3
lwsaf diptych 2
lwsaf diptych

Monday, February 22, 2010

"hands-on" fun [I heart faces]

This week's theme on could not be more perfect. Yesterday, I covered the Lake Worth Street Art Festival for University Press.

chalky girl

Last night, I stayed up until 2am getting photos in for the gallery on the University Press site. Luckily for me, many of my favorites did not have enough information to be captioned and posted so you'll get to see those tomorrow, once I'm rested enough to put together a coherent post.

Friday, February 19, 2010

"breathe in, breathe out/'cause this is life, you are living it right now"

Last night was the Beau Bristow show and he was absolutely amazing. I've been writing and rewriting this entry and nothing I say seems to convey just how much his music impacted me. I guess the best explanation is that I needed to hear some of the things he says in his songs.
Beau Bristow triptych

I know these photos aren't technically perfect. They're far from it. Too much grain, too much motion blur, not sharp enough... But rather than focusing on what's wrong, I'd like for you to listen to his music and tell me that you don't feel something when you look at the photos.
Beau Bristow OOF
Beau Bristow split-tone
Beau Bristow bw
Maybe love's not enough but that's what I have.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

lazy day afternoon

Sometimes when I know things are about to get crazy in my life, I like to have very chill days where I don't do much to stress myself out. Seeing as I'm covering *two* events for University Press this weekend (tomorrow and Saturday), I decided to take it easy today. It kind of helps that law was canceled today.

When I walked into Doug's room and saw him reading on the couch, the light was just perfect and I absolutely needed to photograph the moment before it faded.
lazy day studying
Some lyrics come to mind when I look at this photo: "Beautiful day outside, but I don't care. Everything I need I got right here. Why should I go out? Why should I even move? Just another lazy day afternoon." The Plain White Ts describe perfectly the way today felt. Even the plant was cooperating and it just felt so wonderful and calm.
cheerful plant
I've been poking about in Photoshop, trying to see about mimicking my lensbaby (since it's inconvenient to switch lenses in the middle of everything but I love my baby and miss playing with her.) It's not perfect yet but I'm working on it.

Monday, February 15, 2010

slow dance [I heart faces]

This week, I'm not going to forget the link back button. See? This time, I'm not going to accidentally disqualify myself because of something silly. That being said, on to the actual post...

At the moment, I have the entire I [heart] Faces schedule written on my mirror in dry erase marker as a means to motivate myself. I've actually been saving this photo for a while to use for a challenge, rather than blogging it when I should have, uh... a month ago? This is one of the few photos from New Year's Eve that I don't dislike because of the lighting situation in the basement. I absolutely love it for the way he's looking at her, like he cannot believe he's actually dancing with her.

New Years Dance
Canon Rebel XT
18-55 kit lens at 33mm
f/4.5, 1/60sec, ISO 400
pop-up flash
texture from Dying Beauty Stock
slight vignette added to distract from the background

Sunday, February 14, 2010

I've always wished for you

Sometimes I wonder what exactly is going on here. I grew up on a steady diet of fairy tales and Disney movies, believing I’d grow up to have that ‘happily-ever-after’ ending with a knight in shining armor who would do anything to make me his princess. You can ask anyone who knew me in high school. All I wanted was that clich├ęd movie ending. I chased it and fought to make it ‘work’ the way I thought it should, even when it was painfully obvious to everyone else that “life’s no storybook.” Being completely oblivious to reality/living in a fairy tale world is great… until it ends. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed that sort of idealistic love affair and look back on it with the fondest memories.

I’m three years beyond that sort of thinking. While I’d still appreciate the kind of love you see in the movies, I no longer quest for it with all my heart. I’ve found that a simpler sort of love, while actually being much more complex in reality, provides me with a much better feeling. The sort of warm, diffuse glow the world seems to take on whenever I’m with Doug is nothing like the rich violet magic I always assumed I wanted. Instead of focusing on the magic, I’m focusing on the person I’m with. I’m in love with a person, a real live person, instead of some ideal that no one can live up to. And sometimes, that’s disappointing. But mostly, I just enjoy laughing with him and crying on his shoulder and just sitting there in silence sometimes because words are unnecessary.

While other couples are having fancy dinners with roses and chocolates and maybe diamond rings for Valentine’s Day, we’re stargazing. It still takes me by surprise when I reconcile my ideas of what love should be with what it actually is. Love is picking out all the red-and-blue sour gummy worms because you know they’re my favorite.
gummy worm love
Or hiding under my bed because we don’t have a porch (yet!) and Dug “was hiding under your porch because I love you.”
hid under the bed
It’s playing video games together and shouting encouragement because you can. Or putting together a Dungeons and Dragons campaign as an excuse to spend more time together.

This isn’t the way I imagined myself spending the first decent Valentine’s Day of my life. But I can’t imagine things happening any other way. There are aspects of the fairy tale in our relationship because Doug chooses to bring them to it. If I sent him to bring me a falling star, he’d go to the ends of the earth to bring me one. I know he’s looking right now.

I used to wish on a star every night for the most amazing love the universe could provide. And I was always disappointed when I didn't get what I felt that wish warranted. Well, I think I did.

I set this up to post in advance. I fully intend to be on the beach, stargazing with D when Saturday turns into Sunday.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

it's not *what* I love but *who*

In the process of fishing out my equipment for this post, I found myself flipping through a photo album and reflecting on love: the way I love shooting with film because it’s a completely different tactile experience, how special I feel when I get a chance to capture people in love, and the excitement that comes with showing the world what I love.

Within my album were the two shots I kept from the wedding of one of my best friends. More specifically, my two favorite shots from the first (and currently only) wedding I’ve ever shot. Kat and Derek got married December 2008. I know the wedding wasn’t quite what she had in mind, but I think it was absolutely wonderful nonetheless. In some previous posts, I introduced you to Kat and her son, Preston. She and Derek married when they did because shortly after getting engaged, they found out that they were expecting their handsome boy and she was kind of far along. So rather than wait a few years until they could save up for the fairy tale wedding *and* still be able to provide for their son, Kat and Derek got married at the courthouse. But rather than having a blah shotgun courthouse wedding, they tried to make it as wonderful as possible. Since the room usually used for weddings was being painted anyway, we talked the clerk officiating into marrying them outside the courthouse. Their first kiss as husband and wife happened under a palm tree and a beautiful sky. I photographed Kat and Derek holding hands so you could see the wedding bands in front of her pregnant belly. I wanted to give them photos to show that they had been in love for years before they got engaged and before they started their family. I hoped that I’d be able to capture on film the love I’ve known about since the day I met her.
Kat wedding

The next page in the album conveys a different type of love. These photos were on the tail end of the second roll from Kat’s wedding. My old digital camera was broken and I was waiting for a miracle to make it so I could have a functional digital camera again. I decided to take one of my film cameras on my nightly photo walk because I was going through serious withdrawal and my brother decided to tag along. We ended up at one of the neighborhood lakes, watching the ducks glide around in the descending twilight. I had the fisheye attachment on my lens and was sort of experimenting, not expecting these shots to be anything special. In a lot of ways, they’re not; they’re just more shots of the ducks at the lake. But being able to see how my little brother went with me makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.
fisheye duck love

I will acknowledge that my photos of my album aren’t the best. They don’t need to be. As long as the people I love know that I love them, it’s good enough for me.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

what I love [photo challenge]

About two weeks ago, the amazing Clara (who supplies me with inspiration and amazing textures) announced a challenge: she wanted her fans to take and share no less than three photos of their current obsessions. It's taken me two weeks to decide what I'm 'obsessed' with. I wish I could say I just went "oh, I really like..." and put off posting; it's a little stranger to admit that I had no idea what I love so much. The first thing that came to mind are highlighters. I don't really have a lot to obsess over, especially since my wardrobe as of late is almost entirely jeans and t-shirts and I rarely wear makeup.

After much contemplation, I remembered what causes me to have high-pitched squeaking fits of pure glee. I guess that counts as loving something, right?

I have a weakness for 'vintage' cameras. Old cameras make me giggle like a schoolgirl. I am known for picking up cameras at thrift stores or receiving them as hand-me-downs and slaving over them, trying to restore them. It was somewhat difficult to pick which cameras I was going to photograph but I decided to go with simple cameras that mean a lot. Maybe next time, I'll show you my collection of film SLRs.
what I love

The upper left hand camera used to belong to Doug's Uncle Matt. I'm not entirely sure how it ended up in my possession. One minute, I was looking at it in the basement with Grandma Linda and the next thing I knew, it was in my 'to pack' pile. The one to the right of that one is Yoshi. My dad surprised me with him when I couldn't fix my thrift store Petri. A girl just needs a rangefinder sometimes. The middle row is a really cool tripod that came to me, care of the Hollingsworths. I kind of like it more as a prop than as a functional tripod. But the most important camera is the bottom one, in the position of honor. It previously belonged to Doug's great-grandfather and rumor has it, this camera has photographed the Beatles! She takes a specialty film I need to order from New York City and I can't wait to get her out in the field for a test.

All the photos taken for the collage were taken with my 50mm 1.8 because I wanted to challenge myself twice as much.

Monday, February 8, 2010

"we hung like space stations and rocket ships"

Dear home,
Despite having a stressful weekend of paper writing and covering an event for the University Press, I still managed to go to the beach to watch the last night shuttle launch. Twice, actually.

Originally, the shuttle was supposed to launch yesterday morning in the pre-dawn hour I love so much. Cassidy, Andy, Erin, and I packed a bunch of blankets and Marjorie to watch the launch from the beach. Unfortunately, there was a threatening band of clouds hovering over the space coast and the launch had to be rescheduled. We stayed at the beach until astronomical dawn (when the sky first starts to lighten, although it's difficult to perceive a difference and it's not really much lighter). I decided to make the best of my lack of sleep and just shoot the moon and the stars a little.
moon and stars
I also decided to take a few shots of the sun rising over campus and experiment some more, since I needed to stay awake until the event I was covering anyway.
campus sunrise HDR
Believe it or not, HDR is the only way to make the sunrise sky look like it did in person. The grass and cars, however, look pretty darn unnatural. My sleep-deprived brain likes that.

This morning, Cassidy and I went to the beach again, hoping that the launch would actually occur. There was an elderly couple not too far from us and a few silhouettes further down the beach, but pretty much no one turned out to see the last night shuttle launch ever.

This is my favorite shot of the series. This is the moment where the thruster detached from the shuttle, falling back to earth.
space shuttle 2

Before I came home to get some sleep, Cassidy suggested I photograph the moon like I did yesterday, just in case in turned out to be one of the best shots ever.
moon and stars 2
She was right.

*In case anyone was curious, the title of the post is Something Corporate lyrics. I could not get these lines out of my head this morning when I was trying to go back to sleep. "We hung like space stations and rocket ships and dreamed like we were things of the sky. We dressed like kings and queens and lovers and shouted out into the night 'we're never gonna die.'"

Sunday, February 7, 2010

reacclimating to sunshine [trip part six]

This is the trip entry and then I am all caught up. I know I've been a kind of lax blogger as of late but I promise I'll have something nice to show you soon. In case you need a refresher course, the other trip entries can be found here, here, here, here, and here.

New Year's Eve and Day went wonderfully but unfortunately, I promised I wouldn't post incriminating photos of my future family on the blog. (Before anyone freaks out, there is no announcement attached to that statement.) The drive home was long and not too photogenic. But once we were back in Florida, Doug and I decided to take a few days and have a tropical winter vacation before we had to spend another day in the car.

He took me to Okaloosa Island to show why the emerald coast is so special but apparently, the water isn't emerald in winter.

Doug also indulged me by taking me to both Tijuana Flats and Pizzeria Uno's. Both restaurants are traditions I have with my mother so I just had to pose with the signs like postcards.

dear home, I'm back. I missed you a whole lot so I went and visited out favorite places.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

a life lived out windows [trip part five]

Earlier Ohio escapades can be found here, here, here, and here.

I love watching the world go by, capturing my surroundings as I pass. I have a love affair with the world around me and I spent much of the Ohio trip in my own world, just my camera and I. Or better yet, I went exploring with Doug and captured every moment for nights like tonight.

I spent much of my time obsessing over old barns. There's just something about decaying wood and snow and flaking paint that makes my heart sing.

I also have a weak spot for red brick churches.

I don't really have a lot of stories to tell about many of these photos. I spent a few days just shooting out windows and watching the world go by.