Weekly Photography Challenge: Oooh Shiny!

One of the attractions of photography is trying to capture those Oooh Shiny! moments for posterity, or perhaps to share with someone else who would have been equally distracted (and still can be, thanks to you and your camera).

Yesterday morning I had plans in place to wash walls in preparation for painting…but there was ‘good’ frost, so the plans went on the backburner for a while. I had to go and feed my son’s cat, and I kept my focus long enough to feed him before I got waylaid by icy cactus spines, dewdrops (almost gave up on that one, the camera wouldn’t stay focused…) and violets that looked like they’re frosted with sugar.

I finished my painting this afternoon, so I didn’t get distracted for too long…

Weekly Photography Challenge: Security

It often amazes me to see newspaper polls on how safe people think they are (with no regard for how safe they actually are) when their feelings of security are so much affected by what they read in that same newspaper – not to mention TV news coverage that emphasises and reiterates every bad thing that happens anywhere (preferably with pictures).

Feeling secure is as important as how secure you actually are, and not watching the news is a big help with that. Morgen the cat and our grand daughters, Matilda and Juniper, don’t watch “news” and they feel pretty good most of the time. My mum took the photo of Juni, me and Zoe (my daughter, Juni’s mum) sitting on one of my late dad’s English ship’s cannons. He rescued them from scrap metal when I was little, and we used them as a play gym when I was growing up. I feel less secure about my grandkids frolicking on them – they didn’t seem as high (or hard) when I was a kid…

Weekly Photography Challenge: A Good Match

This morning, wondering which “Good Match” to choose for this weeks challenge, my Rothko-esque painting caught my eye, and I decided on pink’n’orange, which is my favourite colour (combination) by far. My 3 year old grand daughter Juniper thinks it’s amazing that Granny has TWO favourite colours, but I love how they amplify each other, no matter what shade or tone is used.pair-2

So I took the camera for a little stroll around the house, collecting images of pink’n’orange matches.

I could have gone on…but I thought that was probably enough….pair-5

…except for this classic good match of a cat sitting on a mat (which happens also to be pink’n’orange).

Weekly Photography Challenge: Shadow

Without shadows, what would we know about light? This thought occurred to me when learning tonal drawing, in which the shadows give shape to everything. A Japanese paper lantern casts just enough light to bring form into the darkness. Morning and evening are the best time for shadows, I think. The sunlight comes at a slant, casting interesting patterns on the curtains at my windows.I chose to layer a black gridded fabric behind a white curtain, just for the way it would look with the sun behind it, along with a dream catcher and other beaded pieces. Late in the day, a peach tree embellishes the striped shadow of a Venetian blind.

Cats are notorious for their love of sunbeams, but in this case, Morgen sat beside it, in the shadows, so that she stands out against a blaze of light. You’d almost think she did it on purpose !

Weekly Photography Challenge: Relax

At this time of year, with the clarion call of “buy! buy! BUY!” ringing across the land, “relax” is truly a challenge! Cats don’t have any urge to do Christmas shopping, so maybe that’s why Morgen can manage to sleep most of the day (and night). Me remaking the bed was only a temporary interruption…

I like my old eiderdowns (I’m not sure why they got the name – there’s no down in them) with their sweet rosey prints. They’ve usually got some wear and tear (literal) that has to be underneath out of sight.One of my cushions was made (upcycled) from a Nirvana Muddy Banks tee-shirt (wear and tear again!). The back of it features photos of the actual banks of the Wishkah River, from our visit there 5 years ago (they really are muddy…). Sewing is a way I like to relax, but I like to get the tidying up done first, unfortunately.

Weekly Photography Challenge: Morning Morgen

I could have chosen photos of sunrise, or breakfast for the “morning” Photography Challenge, but we have a resident cat named Morgen (“morning” in German), and I thought I’d have plenty of morning photos of her invading my warm bed. And I have! Many of them were taken with a phone camera, because I was still in bed myself, and the phone was handy.

A typical morning routine is – I get up and give her breakfast, make mine and take it back to bed. Then she tries to get a warm  spot, which may involve sitting on me if she can.

You may notice two photos are almost the same, apart from a brownish patch on her flank – the result of sitting much too close to a radiator on a frosty morning. I didn’t realise just how singed she was until she had groomed off all the burnt tips of guard hairs, revealing her pretty apricot undercoat! I guess she couldn’t tell how hot her fur was getting through her winter insulating coat. Oooops!

Weekly Photography Challenge: Vibrant

Bloggers in the depths of the northern hemisphere winter are looking for something Vibrant as a promise of spring. Way down under, it’s summer still but some of us are looking forward to autumn and cooler, crisper days and nights. We’ve had some good rain at last (after months of almost none), so the garden has perked up and is looking much more vibrant. The frogs that have been hiding somewhere have also perked up and are calling loudly, vibrantly, non-stop. Too bad I can’t take a photo of noise!

Here we have my eldest son Simon with his niece, Matilda, Morgen the cat asleep as usual, and contrasting nicely with the vivid colours of a vintage comforter. A book of vibrant poetry arrived in the mail this week, to be enjoyed with freshly made Welsh cakes and a big mug of coffee. Today I had toasted Turkish bread with hummus and home-grown tomatoes. The amaryllis belladonna have opened their petals, their perfume is as vibrant as the colour. Also in the mail – three new card designs for Sukie’s Original, and finally, the little camp chairs that I re-covered with brilliant orange and green canvas. I’m waiting for the day when Juniper and Matilda are both big enough to sit on them!

Weekly Photography Challenge: Ooops

Oops is right – somehow it got to be Friday without me making any post! This week’s (almost last week’s) photography challenge is to share photos of something that went horribly wrong. That’s not really something you can set up, because that would be cheating, and not Ooops at all…so I’ve been trying to think of some disaster that I actually took photos of. Not many…there’s the aftermath of the possum in the pantry…but I couldn’t find the photo. Here’s what happened when a curious bird wandered into the house. We keep the cat in, but don’t always succeed in keeping the birds out.

unlucky

Less of a disaster (nothing died…), my one attempt to date at choux pastry forgot to “puff” when I baked it. Oh well, icing and lollies fixed it!

Not really a disaster, some of the photos I took of my son’s burning Guy earlier this year turned out to be inadvertently disturbing.

The full figure is obviously not human, with it’s tiny dragon head – however the close-up of Alex’s old shoe being licked by flames doesn’t include any clue to what is actually happening…ooops.

Weekly Photography Challenge: Eye Spy

Is it just me, or has someone pressed a cosmic fast-forward button? (I know it isn’t just me – it’s this holiday time of year…and I’d like to stop it and get off. If that was an option.) Suddenly it’s Wednesday, and I’m only just getting to the weekly challenge – Eye Spy.

The cat refused to co-operate (no surprises there…), so I found this little fellow instead. He followed me home from an op shop/thrift store, so I have no idea who he is…

He’s getting into the spirit of the season, though, under my non-traditional Christmas tree. On the wall, a photo from our trip to the PNW includes the sign on our motel “See you nexttime”, and in the next room, my plaster saint oversees a flock of flying pigs, which are a symbol of infinite possibilities. And, in this case, eye-poppingly shiny!IMG_6753 (Large)

For the record, here is Morgen, not looking at the camera. Because she’s a cat, and being obliging is not her thing, thanks very much…and by the way, where’s dinner?

Weekly Photography Challenge: A Good Day

The challenge this week is to make a gallery (with or without MESH), and tell the story of a Good Day. Most days have at least the potential to be good days, although we don’t always think to record them. I had to choose between searching out photos of a past Good Day somewhere exciting, or to get out the camera and record an average, stay-at-home Good Day.

I chose the latter.

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A Good Day at home includes sunshine, some gardening and arts and crafts, a comfy chair, and chai tea and something tasty served up on pretty vintage china. Some Nirvana and photography is always good, and today I made a miniature Japanese moss garden in an old fish tank. And spring is coming – blossom on the trees and birds outside annoying the cat, who isn’t…

I’m not sure if this Mudhoney song is quite in the same spirit, but I like it anyway. Hope you do too…

Today is a Good Day