Saturday, July 31, 2010

Pouter? Or the New Thinker?

This was literally one of the very first pictures I took with my new camera. One thing I've found that is very useful on the DSLR is the editing IN the camera. It's fun to play with the monotone and trim. But the most useful part of the editing on the DSLR itself is to see how sharp each photo actually is. Because what looks sharp on that tiny screen, may be totally out of focus when it's full size. So I use the zoom feature all. the. time.

How cute is this kid?? That hair? I mean really...

I cropped and changed this to B&W on the camera itself.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Come on...Turkey!!

Oh, to be kids again...the anticipation is killing them!! One thing I've learned with the new camera is to take pictures without looking over the subject. It's important to get down and dirty. I was sitting on the floor right behind them at this point...I bet we all looked like a bunch of goons (and by all of us, I mean me...because lets face it, those kids are CUTE with a capital Q!!)

**This is a co-authored/designed blog...that's what happens when you blog in bed with your sister! Also, please forgive the older pictures. I'm in Raleigh with my family, and it's not the best time to whip out the camera. I tried today, but the settings are just not that exciting.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Old Picture, New Editing

So I'm in Raleigh with my family, and between flying all day and my suitcase being at the house, I didn't have my camera all day. BUT I did find a GREAT new editing website that is WAY easier to figure out, AND it is so much easier to deal with html codes instead of uploading pictures. However, trying to find the right size has proven to be difficult--too big, too small, none that are juuuuusssttt right. I'm using I'm a fan. So I messed around with that while we all sat back and relaxed tonight.

So this picture is one of the first "experiments" with my camera. This is a shot of St. Louis Cathedral in Jackson Square down in New Orleans.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Celebrate Life

To my Aunt Mary,
Today I celebrate you: the fight your fought, the love you gave, the smile that lit up the room. I love you, Mar Bear.

In those quiet moments in the still of the night
Remember to rejoice and celebrate life
Do not think of me gone and weep
I am not there, I do not sleep
I am a thousand winds that blow
I am the diamond glints on snow
I am the sunlight on the grain
I am the gentle autumn's rain
When you awaken in the morning hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
of quiet birds in flight
I am the soft stars that shine
You will hear my gentle voice
and remember to rejoice
Never give up your fight
and remember always
to Celebrate Life.... ---- Author Unknown

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

I Can See Clearly Now, the Rain is Gone

We had a nice summer storm in Dallas tonight. So after a nice dinner out with the ol' hubs, I took the camera out to try and capture the aftermath...Because I don't have a macro lens, I couldn't zoom in quite as close as I'd like without the whole thing going out of focus. But I'm learning what I can (and can't do) and getting some decent pictures in the meantime.

Isn't that guy gross?

Monday, July 26, 2010

I Heart Natural Light

Tonight's picture plan was a bust. Neal had a softball game that I was going to photograph for the ol' photogblog, but then it rained. And I was at a loss. So I went through some of my old events on iPhoto looking for pictures to practice editing on (Photoshop Elements is STILL not getting any easier), when I ran across this beauty:
It's one of my favorites. Yes, it was taken before the idea of the blog experiment came into my head, but it's definitely me experimenting with the new camera. It's perfect natural lighting. And I love pictures of people laughing. I them. It's so real and tells so much. And, I mean, this girl is pretty. Am I right??

So I hope that you don't mind me using an old picture...once school starts, it'll probably happen a lot (but hopefully with some editing that makes it cooler and better and newer, right?).

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Summertime Toes

I've been messing around a little on Adobe Photoshop Elements today (I've got the free trial), and I still don't have anything to show for it. I need some super tutorials, that program is hard...Anyway, I was taking a break from the computer and stepped outside to see how hot it was. Ahhh...summer in felt like a million degrees (maybe because I'm wearing jeans??). Anyway, I snagged this shot of the ol' footsies; cute, no?

This POD is funny to me in hindsight because I HATE walking barefoot in grass. I mean loathe. There are some people you'll see wiggling their toes in grass and reveling in the season; and then there's me, sprinting across the grass with high kicks trying to get to the nearest sidewalk/gravel path I can find. I know, I know...I'm probably the only person ever; it's sad, but true.

Anyway, shot this in manual with a low aperture and a shutter speed of 1/40. Again, the natural lighting didn't hurt. I sharpened the color just a little in Photoshop because that's the only thing I've figured out how to do. Oh, and convert to black and white.

Oh yeah, if you scroll all the way down the blog, there's a widget to pledge to see the new film Waiting for "Superman" that comes out in the fall. It's directed by the same guy who did An Inconvenient Truth about the state of education in America. Check it out, watch the trailer, pledge to see the movie, and they'll give 5 books to children and education programs in need...That's my plug for the day.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Just Grillin'

How's that for a cheesy headline?? Wanna see what was for dinner?

Here's a sneak peek...
Bacon-Wrapped Chicken Skewers with pepperjack cheese and jalapenos. Mmmmm...Anything is better wrapped in bacon! Can I get an amen!?!

With a nice summery salad and bruschetta to go along with it...AND leftover strawberry pie, of course.

Last night I couldn't figure out why some of my pictures were coming out blue...until tonight. I forgot that I had my white balance set on incandescent. Oops. I turned down the ISO and shot in Programmed auto for some and manual for others. I relied heavily on natural light for the last one.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Summer Love

As much as I loved summer in Alaska, it's official...I'm back in Texas. I can't pretend any longer that it's NOT 1,898,542 degrees outside. So because of this oh so sad revelation, it's also time to accept that I can't pawn off my Alaska pictures any more either. As much as I'd like to go back to vacation's time to start taking new pictures (I haven't turned my camera on since I got back, bad girl).

So tonight we had the Prewett's over for dinner. We needed our Ellie fix, and Scott and Camille needed to get out of the house (for something other than work, of course). We grilled some pork tenderloin and asparagus, and had some yummy potatoes to go along with it. But what screams summer MORE than grilling out??

Strawberry Pie (with an extra cup of strawberries than the recipe actually calls for...)!!!

And what's better than grilling out AND strawberry pie?? If you said nothing, you haven't met Miss E...she's THE BEST!! Bad mood and all...I'll take a dose of Ellie with just about anything!!!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Alaska Favorites

Considering I wanted this blog to be a photography experiment, I decided to do a separate post with all of my favorites; pictures that I am the most proud of. Every single one of these was didn't feel like a "tourist" shot. I saw something through the lens that stuck out, that meant something. I learned as I went and did a little editing to draw out what I saw in my head.

The next image has such meaning behind it; it really spoke to me. Look at how strong the new growth is, suspended on its own. However, if you look closely, you see how important the old stump is to this new growth. The only way to survive is by holding on to history, to build on what has already come before you, but to grow from learn.

I loved having this opportunity to see Alaska and appreciate its beauty. I loved that I was able to use this opportunity to learn and grow. Alaska, I miss you and your cool summer days....

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Glaciers...I have no words.

I've been trying to find the words to describe Glacier Bay and College Fjord, but there are none. It was nothing short of amazing. Please to enjoy.

Some you see the three story yacht out there??

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Skagway--Full of Liars and Hookers

The last port of the cruise was in Skagway where first we headed down to Liarsville, a tent camp that was set up at the base of a trail. It was the home to reporters during the Gold Rush who were too "wimpy" to actually head up the trail but who wrote stories about their adventures up there...ahem...Liars. They put on a little show for us, and then we panned for gold!! We struck it rich--three pure gold flakes a piece!

After Liarsville, we got back on the bus and headed up to the Yukon. We crossed the border, took some pictures, and then headed back down. It was a BEAUTIFUL drive!!

After we arrived back downtown, we took a "Ghosts and Good Time Girls" walking tour. This was definitely the coldest tour we took--Skagway is in a valley, and it was W-I-N-D-Y, like Texas Panhandle windy.
Here is our tour guide, Miss Ella Va Goodtime. She had lots of good ghost stories and some very interesting information about all of the buildings in downtown Skagway.

The Madam's room....this is where she would watch the streets for customers. They have found up to 18 layers of wallpaper in this former brothel (each for a different prostitute who occupied the rooms), some of which is still on the wall.
This is the driftwood building. There's something like 7, 400 pieces of driftwood on there. It's the most photographed building in Alaska. Um, duh.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Juneau--Like Floating the Brazos...

...Only the weather is about 50 degrees cooler...and the water? It was chilly--a cool 34 degrees!

This picture is actually not Juneau, but somewhere in was taken off the balcony at 11:00 P.M.!!!! Pretty cool, huh? Except I definitely wouldn't say that during the winter when this would be taken during the 2 hours of daylight...

Mendenhall Glacier...pieces...
The glacier. This looked like it was just across the lake, when in reality it was 2.5 miles away!! Talk about deceiving depth perception...

Ready to float...
Pretty proud of the next photographer's eye came out while we were on the bus...Saw this view, jumped out, took the forward two hours when we were in downtown Juneau shopping and saw this EXACT print (plus a little fog) selling for $55.
Our second Juneau excursion included a fresh salmon bake. This was the waterfall just past our dining table.
And this was our DELICIOUS salmon...yes, I went back for seconds...and proud of it!!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Ketchikan: Land of Lumberjacks

Welcome to Ketchikan, Alaska! There were so many pictures, but this is just a small sampling.
From our balcony (believe me, the view was NEVER bad):
The beautiful Coral Princess:
Just a funny sign we saw while wandering...

Lumberjacks!! This is only a very small number of pictures I took at the lumberjack show. Their skills were pretty impressive.
Elise was equally impressed with the lumberjacks themselves *wink*!!

The totem pole park...
The next one is the 3rd tallest totem pole in the world.
I'll leave you with this...