I Do

Well, they did. I was just there taking photos, pretending to know what I was doing. It was all a bit stressful, and I didn’t come away with as many photos as I would have liked; but I did come away with some I was pleased with. I’ve included my favourites in a small gallery.

I was doing a favour for a friend and was especially nervous because I didn’t know anyone else at the wedding, hadn’t met the bride and groom (rookie mistake), and ended up arriving too late to be able to settle into shooting due to circumstances well beyond control. Even though I was disappointed with myself for letting stress and anxiety overwhelm me, I am happy that I was able to give them some nice photos of their day. The friend who enlisted my help made a scrapbook with the photos for her sister – the lovely bride – and from all accounts she was extremely happy. So smiles all round.

Petrichor

It has been a long, hot summer here in our little city so it was a wonderful relief when Mother Nature ushered in autumn with a few days worth of rain and some moderate temperatures. Sure, my washing piled up faster than kids pouncing on a bowl of lollies, but it was certainly a wonderful change.

Life has been a bit strange recently. Plenty of extra curricular activities, children attending some form of education for most of the week, and I’ve been taking photos for other people. Mostly as favours for friends. In the next few days (if I’m organised) I’ll share some of those efforts on here.

It amazes me how the droplets seem to defy gravity. And honestly, who doesn’t love the smell of rain?

 

 

 

 

Family Time

2013-12-19-Family Photos-001_small

I am far from a professional portrait photographer. I’m far from a professional anything photographer. So when my sister-in-law asked me to take some family photos for her towards the end of last year, my natural reaction was to panic. Had the request come from anyone else, my answer probably would have been a flat out no! But, because it came from family I felt a little give. I discussed my worries with my husband (I don’t know how to pose people; My photos are nothing compared to the array of professionals around town; I’ve never attempted to capture a large group before) and eventually decided that I would give it a go.

It took a bit of organising to decide on a time for a session that would suit everyone, we had to work around children in school, preschoolers, a recently born baby, and the roster of a Police Officer in training; all up there are eight people in the family, with the children ranging in age from newborn (creeping up on six months old now) all the way up to nine years old. We set a date and I set about researching ideas for capturing the family in the best way possible.

Part of my research was practising on anyone who would let me point the camera in their direction, and trying to find a way to run through some group poses to give me an idea of settings; I wanted to make sure everyone was in focus and able to be seen. So I called upon a friend and his family, tacked them onto ours, and voila! the perfect practice family. Unfortunately, most of those photos were horrendous and ended up finding their way to the cutting room floor. No fault of the models, all down to my lack of experience and skill in that area.

When the day rolled around I was still extremely nervous about it all, and I think I let them get the better of me. I didn’t come away with very many useable images, and I felt that I had wasted everyones time in even attempting the session. I wallowed for a little while in my own disappointment, and eventually told my sister-in-law what was going on. I wanted to try again, but didn’t want her to have to go through the hassle of organising all the children again when I didn’t even know that I would get any good images the second time around; but she agreed to another session and we headed up for another wander around the park. This time we went a little earlier in the day and I mostly just followed the children around, trying to capture them as naturally as possible. There were one or two times where we asked them to sit or stand in a certain spot, and those images worked reasonably well too.

I haven’t finished working my way through them just yet, my computer is ancient and temperamental at the best of times, which makes processing photos a slow and frustrating task; but I am mostly happy with what I have worked through so far, and what I have given the family.

Would I do it again? Maybe… It really depends on who was asking and what they were after as an end result, and they’d need to be well aware of my NOT PROFESSIONAL status. And… I might need to put a new computer on the wishlist before any of that was to happen; but let’s not get started on wishlists, we could be here until next week.

 

Slow and Steady

2013-12-05-Macro-Snail-001_small 2013-12-05-Macro-Snail-002_small 2013-12-05-Macro-Snail-003_small 2013-12-05-Macro-Snail-003-bw-001_small 2013-12-05-Macro-Snail-003-bw-002_small

 

For my 30th birthday last year, I was lucky enough to be given a 100mm Macro lens from my family. I never thought I’d fall for an inanimate object, but well… I may just love this lens. It is fantastic. I had been pining after a lens for macro photography for quite some time, so it was almost a dream come true. I am still refining my skills, and a flash would be a handy addition to the kit, but I am certainly enjoying getting up close and personal with some of natures smallest.

You can imagine my excitement after some rain when this little fellow appeared in our garden. I sat and watched him (or her) for a while, with my sons watching on eagerly as it emerged from the shell. Of course, it didn’t stay out for long with two noisy boys hanging around, but I kind of like the peering out from under the shell look we got.

The last three are all the same photo, just processed different ways. I couldn’t decide which I liked most, so I’m sharing them all.

Let Your Colours Burst

2014-01-01-New Years Eve-Fireworks-001_small 2014-01-01-New Years Eve-Fireworks-002_small 2014-01-01-New Years Eve-Fireworks-003_small 2014-01-01-New Years Eve-Fireworks-004_smallWell, with New Year’s Eve approaching and the first fireworks show to celebrate the event in our little city for a long, long while, I thought I would try something I hadn’t before: long exposure fireworks photography.

I had read a few things about the settings and such, so set everything up to what I thought and adjusted as the spectacle went on. Some of the results aren’t fantastic, but for the most part I think I did pretty OK.

These are just a few to begin with, there are a couple more I haven’t processed because I have been feeling wretched for the last couple of days.

 

Seeking Love and Friendship

Searching for the perfect companions. Someone who enjoys play time, long walks, and sloppy kisses. Someone who is looking for unconditional love, and is not afraid of commitment. Someone who understands.

There are so many animals dumped, or lost, at local council pounds every single week. Some of these animals are lucky enough to be adopted by a fantastic family, or saved by a rescue group and put into foster care while they wait to find their perfect home. Some of these animals have had an awful existence prior to being dumped; and some aren’t lucky enough to be rescued. Unfortunately, council run animal shelters only have limited resources and are sometimes forced to euthanasie animals who are not claimed or rescued.

Thankfully there are wonderful people who commit their time, energy, and finances to saving these poor souls; and finding them the perfect home. Locally, there are several rescues with quite a large number of cats and dogs looking for their new families. Some of them are left in such a state that they are afraid of people; some are on the brink of death. These wonderful volunteers spend time nursing the animals back to good health, and help them learn to trust again. Some of these dogs and cats have been waiting for their perfect people for longer than they deserve to.

A few weeks ago I had reached a point where I felt confident enough to approach a few local rescues about taking photos for the profiles of the dogs, and cats, they have in their care. I decided back when we adopted Presley that it was something I would love to do, I just had to build the confidence and skills that would allow me to actually put myself out there. I’m so glad I did, and I don’t want to stop meeting these amazing people doing such awesome work.

http://www.petrescue.com.au/listings/235599

Skeeter
Skeeter is thought to be a little Jack Russel Terrier. He is so relaxed and quiet, and follows his foster carers happily. He is quite the little poser, and would make the perfect lap dog.

Skeeter

Skeeter
Skeeter is thought to be a little Jack Russel Terrier. He is so relaxed and quiet, and follows his foster carers happily. He is quite the little poser, and would make the perfect lap dog.

Sadie

Sadie
Sadie is a Staghound x Labrador, and will grow to be a large dog. She is only around four months old at the moment, and look at those paws! She absolutely loves to play, and is the first one to come up for cuddles.

Sadie

Sadie
Sadie is a Staghound x Labrador, and will grow to be a large dog. She is only around four months old at the moment, and look at those paws! She absolutely loves to play, and is the first one to come up for cuddles.

JellyBean

JellyBean
JellyBean is Sadies sister, she has a beautiful nature and loves to sit at your feet. Her entire body moves when she wags her tail, she is just that happy. Like Sadie, JellyBean will probably grow to be a large dog; they both have paws that need growing into.

JellyBean

JellyBean
JellyBean is Sadies sister, she has a beautiful nature and loves to sit at your feet. Her entire body moves when she wags her tail, she is just that happy. Like Sadie, JellyBean will probably grow to be a large dog; they both have paws that need growing into.

If you are looking for the perfect addition to your family, if you have unconditional love to give, and a lot of understanding, please consider adopting a pet from a rescue organisation. It doesn’t even have to be local, most of the adoptions from the local rescues have been from interstate. Check out Best Friends Pet Rescue, R.A.D.A.R., S.M.A.R.T., Needy Paws Dog Rescue, and Blue Plus Animal Rescue. Or you could get lost on the PetRescue site, where most of the animal rescue organisations upload adoption profiles for the animals in their care; be prepared to fall in love on every page.

Rocky Hill

Although the name provokes images of movie montages and fist pumps, the hill itself is actually quite beautiful. Not too steep, which makes it a pretty good walk for the kids, and there’s plenty to look at while you’re walking along. The kids spent a fair bit of time surveying the landscape below, mostly trying to find our house and their Dads work. It’s pretty cool being able to spot certain landmarks from on high, I like the sense of perspective and scale that you get; kind of puts you in your place.

Madalyn 2013-07-02-Rocky Hill-Toadstool-002_small 2013-07-02-Rocky Hill-Toadstool-003_small 2013-07-02-Rocky Hill-Wattle-001_small Not only did we spot those familiar landmarks, but we also spotted some native fauna; a family of kangaroos. One even had a joey in its pouch. They startled very easily, not surprising when you’re exploring with noisy children, and so I didn’t get any good photos of them; but we did see them. Pinky swear.

One of the sights I usually love seeing as we drive past Rocky Hill, is all the spring blossoms colouring the hillside. I wasn’t expecting to see any of those blossoms making an appearance while we were there, considering it was (is) the middle of winter, but there were quite a few starting to flower; and in the last few days I’ve seen more tinges of purple as we drive past.

2013-07-06-Rocky Hill-The Boys-002_small Philip Phillip Phillip

I’m still learning and experimenting with processing, trying to find a style that I like; and although I tried to keep all of these in the same style, they still came out looking different. I usually just try and stick to basic processing, but I branched out a bit with these. Still not really sure about the final products.

Enough of my prattling on, I have to go charge the battery up for a drive to the alpine region tomorrow. It was actually cold enough to snow last weekend, and I’m holding out hope that one of my favourite places will have a bit of cover this weekend. Fingers crossed.