Saturday, December 31, 2011
Friday, December 30, 2011
Thursday, December 29, 2011
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
We visited the Cleveland Art Museum today, where I was introduced to the work of photographer Brian Ulrich. Now this is a photographer after my own heart. In his artistic statement, he describes his work as an "examination of the peculiarities and complexities of the consumer-dominated culture in which we live." What draws me to Ulrich's work is his ability to document everyday scenes in a way that is rich in both visual interest and narrative value. Take a look at the images of the project featured at the CAM on his website. Truly a fascinating project.
Another factor that appeals to me in Ulrich's photography is our shared interest in the decay of the built world, a theme I have turned to several times over the course of my own project. Like my recent discovery of William Eggleston, this is work that validates my own interests as a photographer. It seems fitting that as the calendar year and soon my year-long project draw to a close, I am finding not only my voice as a photographer but also the existing tradition of the style in which I tend to work.
Tuesday, December 27, 2011
My husband and children and I traveled almost 500 miles through rain and snow on narrow, twisty mountain highways to visit family this week to celebrate the holidays, including two birthdays. What a welcome sight were these cool blue sheets and pillows after a long day in the car.
Monday, December 26, 2011
Friday, December 23, 2011
I have a sort of policy that if I do something creative, photographing that project counts as my YIB effort for the day. Sometimes it's a mosaic, today it's a wallet. I have been in search of the perfect wallet for years, to no avail. I want one that will hold several cards AND fit in my front pocket. Crazy, or at least that's the feeling I get from the total lack of a wallet that fits those specifications out in the world.
So I decided to make my own, from the beautiful red packaging of an Equal Exchange coffee bag and a roll of Duck Tape. I followed the general instructions for a duct tape wallet but reduced the dimensions a bit as even the duct tape wallet is huge compared to my ideal. The best part is that I get a whiff of delicious coffee beans every time I pull it out.
Thursday, December 22, 2011
I've been pushing myself more during the second half of my project to get into the nitty gritty of SLR photography: shutter speed and aperture. This was the scene from my back window this morning, the darkest image I've ever attempted to capture. The resulting shutter speed was dramatically slower than I imagined it would be.
Later in the day, I drove through a rough neighborhood with my children on the way from one errand to another and stopped to capture this image. Early on in the project, I considered a few themes that are important to me that I might cover in my project as an attempt to affect those situations. The poverty in my city, and this neighborhood in particular, was one area I strongly considered. As a stay-at-home mother with two very young children, I decided this was not the year to tackle such a project, but I'm storing the idea away for possible future use.
Tuesday, December 20, 2011
The photography habit is in truth an extension of my photo album habit. Not scrapbooking, but collections of my favorite photographs from my life, a habit I started in middle school. In the early days I would physically trim a photo to remove distractions or otherwise improve the composition. From this I learned to get the composition right when I snapped the image in the first place. Now I like to think I am taking it to the next level with an improvement in focus and creative point-of-view. In the end, when I am old and grey, I want to be able to look back through the years with my children and truly enjoy, on every level, each photographic moment of their lives.
Monday, December 19, 2011
Saturday, December 17, 2011
Started on a new project today, literally on top of the last, not yet fully completed project. This one will be a coffee table, the base built by the metalsmithing and woodworking talent in our business, my husband.
Speaking of the business, have you seen our new website?? phoenixhandcraft.com We're so excited and thrilled with the results.
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
Monday, December 12, 2011
Wednesday, December 7, 2011
Tuesday, December 6, 2011
Monday, December 5, 2011
Sunday, December 4, 2011
Saturday, December 3, 2011
We took the kids to their first parade this weekend. By happy coincidence, the parade happened to fall on the 300th day of my project.
These first three images are the crowd milling about, waiting for the parade to reach our section of the route.
Neither my husband nor I had been to a parade in many, many years. I think I was marching in the high school band at my last parade.
More here if you like.