Sunday, May 27, 2012

Stepping toward inspiration

Last weekend while at Rachel's graduation, I couldn't help but notice these fabulous little shoes behind me. Unfortunately, my son was being kicked by the two-year-old wearing them. But, I didn't miss the opportunity to capture one sparkling silver shoe in the setting sun.

Yesterday, I watched the movie, Seven Days in Utopia. I found it an inspiring film about a "has been" golfer who discovered not only how to come back to the game of golf, but how to live life.

See it. Feel it. Trust it.

Isn't that how we do anything well? How we follow a passion? And live an inspired life?

What does Kobi's eye have to do with seeing, feeling, trusting? I don't know, but he sees and trusts. I know that.

Sometimes it's hard to discover the passion. Sometimes we must listen first. Sometimes it's just time to dream and trust that each small step will get us where we want to go.

Textures on DREAM thanks to Pixel Dust's: Autrefois and Kim Klassen's: IAm.
"Dream" font INkedGod by Dafont.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Experimentation and a celebration

Yesterday was a good day after all.

I have found myself rather reclusive. I vacillate between wanting to get out and get involved and hunkering down in my chair with my laptop. When I do the latter, it's fun to experiment with InDesign, Photoshop, and Illustrator.

A major part of yesterday I worked on this flyer. It started out as an exercise in creating a logo in Illustrator that came to me during the night. I have no idea what it means, but I'm learning to follow the inklings. Before I knew it, I was moving from logo to flyer. There is no conscious intention except to be creative and see what I could come up with. This is not a real event.

Texture used on the image thanks to Shadowhouse Creations.

As I worked on this creation, I swung the pendulum to and fro as to whether I would actually attend Rachel's graduation from high school. It really wasn't about whether I wanted to go or not, it was just a mood thing--more about being out in the world. She is Bill's daughter and more often he extends offers that I'm welcome to come to family gatherings. In recent times, I've begun to accept these offerings of inclusion. For a very long time I didn't want to infringe on his family time, so I declined.

At the bewitching hour, I finally decided I would go. I wanted to honor Rachel's accomplishment, not that I expected any less--of course, she would graduate. There was no doubt. Afterward, we all went out for dinner to The Cheesecake Factory and it was a really nice celebration. There were seven of us including Rachel's boyfriend and brother, Scott, and Bill and his wife, Gail. It's good to have come so far in the evolution of a blended family. I am so grateful and count my blessings.

So, this is an effort to design a composite of some photos I took after the graduation. Certainly, not all the significant images, but after spending much time working on a layout, I decided less was more. Rachel has matured into a delightful young lady and I'm sure she will go on to accomplish great things.

I really must remember to come out of my hermitage more often.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

A little piece of heaven

The pleasure of the day inspires me to play with picutres and learn how to use curves in InDesign to create a poster for escaping to a little piece of heaven.

click to see larger image

Strolling along a path that wanders beside Boulder Creek is one of my favorite pastimes. It calms me to pay attention to the sounds of nature. It brings me back to myself. Why is it so easy to forget how gentle and kind Mother Nature can be? Why is the world we live in not quite so gentle? Why is my own mind not very compassionate sometimes?

The cottonwood trees are shedding their seed pods and the white puffies are floating through the air. It almost look like snow on the ground when it accumulates.

The breeze shakes hands with the blooming brush making its presence known. As I observed the various plants and trees, I am aware of how boring the world would be if there was only one type of foliage. Then I translate that idea to the differences people exhibit. There are some people I like better than others. I don't apologize as I know this is human and at some time in our lives we all feel this way. But, these differences are what makes life interesting. I wonder if we are more prone to think this way because our world is comprised of an odd combination of personal disconnection from our neighbors and global online connection.

I sit on a bench listening to the birds twitter and feel my sweet Kobi's body swell and contract as he pants. Bicyclists and pedestrians pass by oblivious that I'm even here off in a corner of paradise in the middle of Boulder.

The traffic wooshes in the background but is inobtrusive. The sun peaks through the branches. It's time to go. Kobi needs a drink and he's getting impatient. Just like a toddler, he is. I find myself wanting to linger. The breeze picks up and carries on its wave a delicious scent.

I must remember what connecting with the earth and nature does for me. I wonder if this is why so many humans are irritable and depressed these days. Do they forget too? Do they coop themselves in cars and offices and houses? Forgetting to drink of the beauty that is free?

It's so easy to forget.
I want to dedicate myself to remembering more often.


... and as an after-thought, here is another piece I did while learning how to make curves in InDesign ... using a photo I took some time ago.

Circle dots brush thanks to Krist Adams and "go with all your heart" brush thanks to Kim Klassen.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Remembering Mom ...

Happy Mother's Day, Mom.

Picture taken 1962; doing her favorite thing in all the world
Phyllis J. Forbes lived 1921 - 1996

My mom returns as the seasons circle 'round.
Bringing me messages to keep going on.
Encouraging me each day.

She was always there to show support.
Ballet, dance, songs, and swimming.
She wanted to see me do well.

She kept me warm and kept me fed.
Made sure I went to school and made my bed.
She made sparkling celebrations of the holidays.

When my kids came along, she gave them gifts and hugs.
She introduced them to ice cream cones and sand castles.
She loved to watch them grow.

Oddly, I hear her better than ever I did,
and I miss her more now since she's been gone.
May she forgive me for not getting it then.

Today is a day to be grateful
for Moms and hugs and love.
To celebrate those here and gone
by remembering all the good.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Focus ...

Focus has many definitions.

There is how rays of light converge in a camera lens allowing a photographer to render clarity on different points in an image.

Or to adjust one's vision as to render a clear, distinct image.
Or to concentrate attention or energy on a subject.
Or the center on an interest or activity.

My first assessment of the last few weeks is that I've been unfocused, but upon contemplation, my focus has just shifted depending on priorities.

Sometimes I've been focused on the job search;
sometimes on interview preparation;
sometimes on letting my brain rest;
sometimes on cleaning/clearing parts of my home;
and finally I get back to photo processing.

Today, I took a journey to the past. I reconnected with my friend Debbie in Phoenix. I teased that it had been a hundred years since we spoke. Close, but not quite. She and I were pregnant with our first children at the same time. We shared nursing, diaper, first foods, crawling, walking, first day of school stories as they grew. Then we did it again with our second children. It was amazing to catch up now that our toddlers are now grown men and women and her beautiful oldest daughter recently marriage. Passages. Reminds me of Gail Sheehy's book. And that takes me back a few years.

Then I got back to learning something new. I always feel alive when I engage in this process. I let Kobi help me create a pop-through image. If you want to try this effect, see Steve Patterson's pop/punch-through tutorial. For those of you who have followed me on Flickr, these images will be familiar/redundant, but I thought it was time to catch up on my blog.

Earlier last week, in Kim Klassen's Beyond Layers, she talked about those who brings light into our lives. This sweet boy always shines a bright light for me. He's giving me the eye here! ;-> I made a composite texture background from Kim Klassen's chase and Pixel Dust Autrefois.

... and I found myself taking macros of my food. First, the two tomatoes on the vine that were on the counter caught my eye. Then, an orange nearby. Somehow, I felt they belonged together. What might it look like if an orange grew on the tomato vine?

Later, it was time to eat the delectable fruits sliced by the sharp edge of a silver blade. Yes, I seem to enjoy playing with my food; hence, the variety of perspective here.

And lastly, a week ago today, I was challenged to take a "wet/water" picture for my Macro Mondays Flickr group. The weather cooperated last weekend. I took this picture through the arcadia door, thus this is the back of the leaf with the droplets on the other side.

Tomorrow my focus may be on something else. Maybe back to putting books on the shelves in my "new" sacred place, the spare bedroom that has been vacant for three years! Or scanning more job opportunities. Or maybe the rain will stop and Kobi and will go for a walk. Sometimes being serially focus feels scattered. Sometimes it's an excuse. Often it is just part of life.

Until next time, my friends.
Thanks for reading if you got this far.
Happy Sunday to all.