Macro to More


“To me, photography is an art of observation. It’s about finding something interesting in an ordinary place…I’ve found it has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.”

~ Elliott Erwitt~

While I was deciding on what to post today, I did a random search for macro photography quotes. As I scrolled through some various quotes, one stuck with me. The quote above from Elliott Erwitt is my photography mantra basically. When I am walking around, I see pictures. I literally have to force myself to keep moving at times or I will stop and stare at things, and if my camera is around, take 5 or 100 photos.

I think about the perspectives and watch the light. I look closely to see the wonder that a passerby may miss in their frantic pace of life. Of course, I can’t do this all the time. I do have a job to do and bills to pay. But, even in the midst of day-to-day life, I notice the world and think, “That would make a great picture.”

Anyway, as I thought about Erwitt’s quote, I realized,  I honestly had no idea who the man was. So I did some internet research. Hhhmmmm. This is the photographer who shot the famous Marilyn Monroe subway vent shots!

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According to Wikipedia, “Erwitt is an advertising and documentary photographer known for his black and white candid shots of ironic and absurd situations within everyday settings.” He also served two years in the Army as a photographer’s assistant.

There is a lot more to say about the man of course, but I hate to repeat what others have already stated to so well. So check out some of these links if you want to know more:

Fellow WordPress blogger – BWGallerist

Dirk De Graaf on Pintrest

Wikipedia

American Photo Magazine

Overall, a very interesting mini research project on some history in the world of photography. I would have to say, I never thought this is where my thoughts would go for my macro post on some flowers from my yard.

I suppose that is what is fun about opening our eyes to world. For when we look a little deeper at things, we not only discover beauty, but we sometimes find mystery, wonder, inspiration, details and history that just could effect us in some way. Maybe we will learn something, shift our perspective or find some solace. Regardless, the closer we look at things, the more we really see them.

Where will your camera take you? And what will you find if you look a little deeper?

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For Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge ~ Macro.

The Garden Project Update


In May, I shared the creation my garden project. Now, all the garden boxes are in place. The vegetables have been planted. Some flowers have been added for decor around the yard and the watering has begun. So, I thought it was time to show you some of the progress. Below is a slide show that give you a view of the progression over the past month.

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As you can see, we have growth happening! We have also had to start fighting the beetles from eating our progress. They seem particularly drawn to the gerber daisy leaves and the hibiscus plants. Therefore, I have started a war with them. So far it is a tie.

I have to admit that I really like watching nature bloom in my back yard. The first seeds that were planted were zucchini seeds. They were in the first prototype garden box we built. So they have a good two weeks (or more) of growth on all them over the other seedlings. They also got a box full of Miracle Grow soil. These two factors have seemed to help them greatly. As you can see below, the zucchini pants (four) are massive. In the firs shot the little seedlings is not even over the wood trim of the container garden. In the next shot, they are huge. If you look at the garden box to the left, you can see that the zucchini are taller than the 42″ wire tomato plant guides. I think I need to start researching different zucchini recipes.

The other garden boxes did not get full Miracle Grow soil though. After doing some math, I wound up getting some top soil delivered. It was just too expensive to fill six garden boxes with 12 $12-bags. So the remaining bags got a mix of top soil, Miracle Grow soil, and regular Miracle Grow-treated waterings. Fingers crossed, the garden will continue to blossom well.

This whole project has been a lot of work. Thanks to my dad and boyfriend, the three of us have shaped our little corner of the earth. Through pouring sweat, aching backs, disappearing money, countless bug bites, and even a little blood, we have become part of nature’s glory.

On days off, I really enjoy walking around the yard to check out Mother Nature’s progress. (With shout outs to my dad too who is the full-time grounds keeper. I really couldn’t keep this all alive without him!) It’s amazing to watch a little seed bloom into such grandeur, and to know we helped it. The therapeutic value of the garden is powerful too. This is not a new thought though. Gardens have been known to have that power and have written about often. Below are a few garden/gardening quotes that you may find interesting.

The best place to seek God is in a garden. You can dig for him there.”

~George Bernard Shaw, The Adventures of the Black Girl in Her Search for God, 1932~

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Gardening is cheaper than therapy and you get tomatoes.”

~Author Unknown~

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Gardens are a form of autobiography.”

~Sydney Eddison, Horticulture magazine, August/September 1993~

I would have to agree with those quotes. They are very on point for my life.

Another thing I have enjoyed about the garden has been the access to numerous photo opportunities. Below are a few of my favorite iPhone shots and my actual submission pieces to Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge ~ Nature.

If you want to see more shots of the garden that I took with my actual cameras, just click over to my photography blog post.

And if you come back next Thursday for Sally’s Macro Challenge week, I will show you my little garden lizards. I did a full photo shoot with them as they were quite adorable and tolerant of my presence. I took so many shots that it looks like a full blown modeling session. 🙂

I also need to show you how we turned a Dish Network pole and dish into a a bird bath! But that is another post. I have rambled enough for now.

Enjoy your day you lovely readers of blogs! And don’t forget to hop over to Sally’s page, Lens and Pens by Sally. Check out her challenge and join in on the fun.

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For Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge ~ Nature.

 

 

The Garden Project


I adore gardens. At my last house, a rental, I tried to make a few flower beds. I spent days digging and pulling up weeds. Then after spending some good money, I planted and pruned and weeded. They looked really good and I was excited. However, it didn’t last.

After a month or so, it was a complete waste. The deer and armadillos were so plentiful there, they ate everything. I mean EVERYTHING! I may as well have strapped dollars to the tree for the animals to eat. Therefore, I never planted anything at that house again that was not in a pot on the back porch.

Now that I have purchased my own home, I want to try a garden again. This time though, I am starting in the fenced in backyard and with vegetables. I can’t say that I have actually seen any deer in our neighborhood, but I am sure they are there. It is a wooded area after all. However…I just hope that between the fence and the dog and my prayers, my garden project will not be futile.

Anyway, I thought I would do something with the sloped part of my yard above my retaining wall that is really not good for anything but annoying, slanted mowing. So I bought some 4’x4′ garden boxes to fill the area. I thought the boxes would give the garden some kind of order (my military side demand’s this) and design (my girly side needs this).

Of course, none of my projects are ever easy. I couldn’t just pick a flat area, throw a box together and then fill it with dirt, and then say, bam-we have a garden. No. That’s boring. I chose to do six boxes on the sloped rectangular hill, which has required us to dig the boxes into the hill on one side and then build them up on the other.

For the build up, I decided to use some of the abandoned bricks that the former owner left piled behind the shed. (See, now I am recycling too!)

The hardest part has been making all the boxes flow together. We had to make sure each box is level of course, but at the same time, they have had to be at same height as the other boxes and the same distance from the retaining wall. The measuring and leveling of wood, dirt and clay has been exhausting.

It has now been weeks since this project started. Between two jobs, workouts, visits to my horse, special events and the basic demands of life, the project has been limited to a few scant hours here and there.

I have had help though. My dad and boyfriend have labored away with me and helped me when the unlevel bricks have taunted me to the point of madness. Clearly, I do not have future in professional landscaping.

Anyway, we are down to one box to level. The remaining five are in place, have gravel for drainage, and are ready for soil and plants. (Well, I do have one filled box that was our prototype.) This weekend I am getting some soil delivered and the boxes will be filled. Then we can start planting and watch it grow!

z bud

Our first little test plant (zucchini) appeared in our prototype box already!

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For Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge ~ Nature.

 

 

Emotion Through Art


Today I will speak through my pictures as I am lacking energy and words. Nothing wrong, just a lazy dreary day to enjoy. (Well, technically yesterday when I wrote this.)

Sometimes I think I say more with pictures than I do words anyway, perhaps more elegantly too. So here are a few iPhone pictures I took and their edits. Which do you prefer,the actual image or the image I created?

Now, for the rest of my Thursday, I will be enjoying life unplugged. There will be music, dancing, and even a dashing prince, and who knows what will actually happen during the ballet-because I was just talking about my real life:)

Go out and find your art and smile today!

Love, Nato

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For Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge ~ Challenger’s Choice Week

I chose Abstracts.