awakening

Woke up five minutes before 6 A.M. this morning. That’s a little early for me.  The moon’s rays were trickling in through the blinds in the bedroom. It’s one day after being full moon, so it still looks pretty full to me. I got up, thinking I might get some good moon shots from the balcony. Turned on the coffee machine, which I prepare each night before going to bed. Looked out and saw that the moon was still way up in the sky. Decided to wait a while so that it would get closer to the horizon and hence look bigger. Also nice when you can get some kind of foreground. Drank my coffee, did my web stuff … looked out every now and then. Even got out and shot a few, but I was not happy with them. It was cold out there … only nine degrees below freezing, but the blustery wind made it bone chilling, and the tripod would hardly stand still. The closer it got to the horizon, the more daylight there was and after three mugs of strong, black coffee there was no point in going back to bed.

We went out later today and I saw two bald eagles in the sky. That’s always a treat! Too high up for any good shot, but just seeing them is enough for me. In Rockwood Park I shot this gull.

Rockwood Park sent out an email the other day. They wanted photos for various publications, to attract (even) more people to the park. They stated that they needed pictures with people kayaking, from the golf course, from the camp grounds et cetera. I went over to my Flickr albums, searched for all photos tagged ‘rockwood park’. Got close to 2,000 results, but only two, three with people in it! Had they asked for ducks, furry animals or morning mist I could have supplied them with oodles. Shooting people is really not my kettle of fish.

I’ll sleep like a log tonight.

 

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it’s snowing…

but only here in WordPress. Very nice of them to put the snow script back, because outside everything’s just brownish gray.

Took a walk yesterday, thinking I’d take some photos. Only brought the 50mm lens and went up on Fort Howe — the look-out point here in Saint John. The sunlight was extremely bright and either I wasn’t inspired enough or my mind wasn’t really ‘open’ … I couldn’t come up with anything that I liked.

In the lobby here in the apartment building, Christmas is in full swing already. I used to make those balls in Photoshop! Still, when I see nice ones in the stores, I think to myself; «I could easily make a virtual one like that myself!» 🙂 It was a lot of fun doing that, especially when we were a bunch of people in the blogosphere who were into the same stuff.

Just yesterday, I came across an old account I had in Photobucket and found a folder full of backgrounds and other images that I’d made back in 2005-06 …. hundreds and hundreds of them, many I’d forgotten. It was fun to see but most of the background images were too …. wild …to intrusive. I’ve put one up here in this blog right now, that’s just on the limit. The images shouldn’t take away from the blog, but back then … in that group I was in … we were more about graphics than content.

Eleven down, one to go


We’ve entered the twelfth month of this blogging challenge and I’m still hanging in here.  I knew I could do it, even though I came close to quitting a few times when my inspiration took a dip. The quality of these posts one can always discuss, but I’ve managed to squeeze one out almost every day. Much easier than the photo-a-day challenge I was involved in for a while. That was different because I somehow put much higher pressure on myself … not to shoot just anything in order to take a shot.

Speaking of taking photos … when I was home, my best friend decided to buy a DSLR camera, like I have. She had a little point-and-shoot camera and kept taking pretty nice pictures with it, but she wanted to step it up a notch. There was this offer in one of the stores, where she could get a nice Canon with two lenses for a very good price, so she went for it.

This was just before I was about to leave Härnösand, but we managed to get one photo-walk in and we talked a little about aperture, shutter speed and all that stuff…

The other day, they got the first snow back home, and she sent me a few pictures of it. Boy, that woman must be a fast learner, as she’s only had the camera for a little over a month! She had resized the pictures for email, so unfortunately I can’t blow them up to size but still … here you go…


When I was at that stage, I kept shooting ducks that turned out as little dots because I had not understood what the 18-55mm lens did and I felt really sad. Things started to look up a little after I took the camera course, and bought the long lens, but I had seriously considered to just sell the camera.

Block

Lately, I’ve experiences something like a «photo block». I don’t know what to shoot. This article appeared before me in Facebook last night, so that really spoke to me! I’m not alone 🙂 Please, take a peek … link will open in a new window. It’s like I put a lot of pressure on myself. Pressure to improve … to go on, to find new subjects …I feel as if it’s not okay to just shoot ducks or squirrels all the time.

The thing is probably NOT to go out looking for it! The author came up with a great project for himself.

Found this Foxglove when I was in Härnösand. Couldn’t believe that they were in bloom then! If you translate the Swedish name of that flower it gets thimble flower. It’s from one of those type of flowers they extract digitalis from. Its effect was discovered by a Dr. named Withering! 🙂 Foxglove is a cute word — makes me envision little mitts for foxes!

it’s intriguing…

 

While I was travelling now, for four weeks, I often thought of all these people who have to travel! In their jobs! All around the world, all the time … some of them I’m sure have close to two hundred days of travelling a year!

Sure, they must get used to it and not become totally exhausted like I do, but still?! On top of it all, they have to be really fit and spruced up the morning after, in order to make some speech, fix huge server networks or whatever — they must be really alert!

I had deliberately chosen this flight via Iceland, in order both to avoid the hustle and bustle of the world’s major airports AND to hopefully get a glimpse of Iceland [which I did], but I was still extremely tired. I’d seen to that I wouldn’t have to RUN to any connecting flight, which I’ve done before … I want plenty of time to hang around and do some people-watching.  Either way, I hope all these work travelling people of the world have their blood pressure checked regularly! 🙂

The picture today is just a little lake, outside of my home town … out in the middle of nowhere. There, it was peaceful — a «deafening silence», to use an oxymoron, and the lake was like a mirror. All the time I was there, the weather was really co-operating! Only one night there was this rain storm, but that was at night and didn’t affect me in any way.

In blogs to come, I guess there will be little snippets from this trip, as I’m slowly digesting it.

 

a trip down memory lane

I’ve never been a huge fan of Facebook but I have an account — like most other people these days — and I’ve had it ever since they opened it to the public. Can’t say that I’ve found many ‘long lost friends’ or that I use it very much to keep in contact with my friends back home either.

The other day, when I ‘d written that long blog here … one year ~ one sentence … later I checked out things in FB, and noticed that someone had started a group — you know one of those «you know you are from **** if you…», for my hometown! The woman who started it is still in disbelief because just a few days have gone by and there are already more than 1,400 members. People keep posting like crazy, sharing old memories, photos and newspaper clips. I’ve never had this much fun in Facebook ever before. I don’t know them all — in many of the cases I would probably know their parents, but still. I uploaded the group photo from my confirmation. I didn’t know many of the people in the picture, but I tagged the few I did remember. Some guy came in and said ‘that’s me, to the far right in the third row’! He remembered them all, so he helped out with tagging.

I think this group may be even more fun for me because I’m so far away from there. I’ve been reminded of people and places I haven’t thought about for aeons!

On a different note, have you ever found yourself liking a picture even though you can’t say why? I took this the other day … no idea why I took it but the more I look at it, the more I like it somehow.

quaco light

This is West Quaco Lighthouse, and one of the very few photos in my album that is a little photoshopped. I was into that for a while, two years ago.

Quaco is one of my two favourite lighthouses. The other being Nubble Light in Maine — the most photographed lighthouse in the world, or at least, so they say. I’ll come back to that another time.

The other day, my husband was going through old photo albums and came across a really old picture of Quaco lighthouse … it still had paint on it and looked so fine. I wish they could do something about it … the setting is absolutely fabulous but not many people seem to know about it.

Last night, I was working on another post for today, but I feel that it’s still a little premature so I’ll just let it hang around the drafts folder for a couple of days or so.

For the first time in, I don’t know how many, days, we’re seeing blue skies and sunshine! The fog we had stayed unusually long and was to thick I couldn’t see the street down below. This might be a day for some picture taking.

Here’s Quaco, in case this picture made you want to visit…

photo memories

Yesterday, when I was about to choose picture for the weekly photo challenge, I had a hard time making up my mind. Kept looking at all my flower pictures … I’ve had my Flickr account since 2005, lots of flowers have accumulated there and in the beginning I didn’t realize the importance of tagging the pictures. Another thing I didn’t realize back then, was that I should have kept them in high resolution, but that’s another issue. I was totally new to cameras and photo …. I knew literally nothing. Now, if I want to find a photo in Flickr, I must try and remember at least which year, and hopefully also, month, in order to narrow it down a little.

Anyway, with regards to this flower challenge … I had another photo in the back of my head that I remembered well. I knew exactly when I’d shot it because we’d just bought a new camera and I was going wild with the zoom. Our first one did have some zoom, but only digital … when you did the zoom all the pictures got pixelated. Like I said, we didn’t know much when we bought it, but we got a very nice printer/scanner with it and I think that was the fact that settled the deal. That printer is still working well after all these years!

These are the four cameras of my life

…and no matter what I do in the gallery settings here, I can’t get them in the right order!

All this took me hours yesterday, and I came across a lot of flowers in the process … so many pictures I’d forgotten. When I see them I remember where I was and what things were like when I took them. Each time I go in like that, I make an effort and tag as many as possible but there’s several years worth of photos that are untagged and in no category either so it would be a humongous task to go through them all.

This is the flower picture I was looking for originally, before I got totally lost down memory lane.

Freedom

What’s even worse is that this post took me close to an hour to finish. Here’s why: I uploaded all the images I was going to use for this post in one fell swoop … the four camera pictures and the flower picture. I wanted the cameras in a gallery and the flowers separate. No matter what I did in the settings, the flowers appeared in the gallery. Eventually, I had to go into the WP Support, learned that I had to find the image-ID of the picture I wanted to exclude and type that in in the shortcode of the whole thing. Phew! BUT … as usual, I learned something in the process.

like

This morning post connects a little bit to last night’s. That talk about page views and comments, made me take a closer look at it this morning. I don’t have any answer to why they’ve gone down so drastically since May, but I found another little tidbit of information. The posts in my blog here, that have received the highest numbers of page views are the ones where I’ve taken part in the weekly photo challange. I can see why, because that’s the only time when I go and post my link on the Daily Post Blog. Those posts get a lot of more exposure than the others where I wouldn’t bother.

Now … that was really a parenthesis. Normally, I’d consider myself pretty knowledgeable about WordPress and how to find my way around the settings. One thing, I found out the other night, when I read Joss’ post  ‘Seven Links Challenge‘, was that I didn’t know how to find the posts I’ve «LIKED».  I wanted to find one of her poems, I knew I had “liked” it but couldn’t find where in the world my ‘likes’ were listed?! Not until now … this very minute! I even had to change ‘don’t ‘ to ‘didn’t’ here in the line above because I just found it!

You go to wordpress.com, stay signed in, click the tab «Following» and then, in the left column there’s a link that says ‘Posts I Like’. So there … now I know.

I rarely use the «like» feature, I forget that it’s there most of the time, but when I do, it’s often as a bookmark feature for myself. When I like the post or photo so much that I want to be able to go back to it easily. Same thing with «favourites» in Flickr. In Facebook, however, I sometimes use it when I don’t know what to say but want to show that at least I saw it.

My husband found out the name of the yellow flower from last  night’s post: Common Mullein! Now I know … again! 🙂  When I took the shot of it yesterday, it was really the droplet I was focusing on so I brought it up today and cropped it a little … here’s the result.