Over the 9 years we were in Utah, James and I didn’t spend Christmas or Thanksgiving together. We both felt that it was important to spend the holidays with our parents: it was important to them and we would have plenty of holidays together after the blessing of having our parents around was lost. I always went home for Christmas and he went home for Thanksgiving. Whomever wasn’t going home stayed behind to care for our kids, the cats.
I took this photo in my parent’s back yard when I was in Orlando for Christmas in 2006. I remember sitting in the grass with the Nikon D100 I was learning to use, very aware of a nearby nest of ants. James liked the photo so much, I gave him a framed 18×24 print for our anniversary. It still hangs on the wall, transformed now somehow into a reminder of how fate can mock our plans and best intentions. This morning, I came across the original image file and decided to revisit it and clean it up using my current editing skills and tool set. The end result isn’t as bright as the original — an unintentional but probably subconsciously driven outcome, for the same can now be said of me. One of the things that has always and will always draw me to photography is the ability of an image to make me reflect and feel, much like one does upon hearing an old, significant song.
“Gerbera Daisy, Transformed”, Nikon D100, ISO 200, f/5.6 at 1/250 sec., 80mm Click the image to view larger size and available print options.
“Deciduous trees are trees that can’t decide what outfit to wear, so they change three times a year. ”
― Jarod Kintz, The Merits of Marthaism, and How Being Named Susan Can Benefit You
This is another photo of a Redbud tree, photographed early last Wednesday morning at historic Prater’s Mill near Dalton, Georgia. These trees are so beautiful! If I lived in Northwest Georgia, I’m pretty sure I’d have several in my yard.
“Redbud 2″, Nikon D800, ISO 400, f/5.3 at 1/40 sec., 98mm Click the image to view larger size and available print options.
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places and constructed in 1855, Prater’s Mill served the communities of Northwest Georgia for almost 150 years. Located on Highway 2, I drove past the mill on my way out of Dalton at 7:45 Wednesday morning. As it was a somewhat overcast and cool morning, there was water vapor rising in spots from the warmer waters of Coahulla Creek. The morning light was golden and gorgeous.
I hope you enjoy the photo as much as I enjoyed creating it.
“Prater’s Mill”, Nikon D800, ISO 400, f/14 at 1/40 sec., 98mm
Click on the image to view larger size and available print options.
As I drove into Dalton, Georgia on Monday evening, I was captivated by the beautiful purple-maybe-magenta-but-definitely-not-red blossoming trees growing both wild and in people’s yards. They were like fireworks of color lighting up the oncoming shadows of the setting sun. When I later inquired about what kind of tree this was, I was told they were Redbuds. On hearing this, my first thought was immediately vocalized (though in a much different dialect than my own) by my sister-in-law: “I think the guy that named ‘em musta been color-blind.” To which, of course, I could only fittingly respond: “Yep, I’d say yur right.”
“Eastern Redbud”, Nikon D800, ISO 400, f/5.3 at 1/160 sec., 98mm Click the image to view larger size and available print options.
Hope is the thing with feathers -
that perches in the soul -
and sings the tunes without the words -
and never stops – at all…
– Emily Dickinson
Today is James’ birthday. This is one of the “firsts” I have been dreading; James and I always treated each other to a special dinner at a favorite or must-try fine restaurant for our birthdays. That time has past, that life is gone. Knowing I didn’t want to be anywhere else today, I drove to North Georgia to spend the day with his mom, sister and brother. We will visit and place flowers on his grave. We will grieve. We will mourn. We will find joy in our love, comfort and hope in our faith. But despite all that we will share, we will walk away with nothing to fill the holes in our hearts and still too many days until we will see him again.
Happy birthday, James. You are — and will always be — my sunshine.
“At-one-ment”, Nikon D800, ISO 200, f/10 at 1/100 sec., 122mm Click on the image to view larger size and available print options.
We COULD be rare specimens of an exotic breed of dancing African elephants, but we’re not. At least, I’M not.”
― Neil Gaiman, Coraline
Some of you may have already seen this photo on my Facebook page, but as it’s Saturday — or “Caturday”, according to your preference — I thought I’d share it here, too. I had a few minutes to get to know Charley while shooting an in-home client portrait last week, and she kindly agreed to let me take her photo.
“Charley”, Nikon D800, ISO 200, f/5.6 at 1/160 sec., 300mm Click the image to view at a larger size.
“Threaten the oppressed and be prepared to face their onslaught, abuse them and be prepared for an even greater threat.”
– Martin Dansky
As this is my second glass block photo within a week, I’ll admit that I’ve long been a fan of glass blocks. This configuration, lighting and the dark hue of the blocks produced by the shadows of the building’s interior caught my attention when I was downtown recently. During processing, I messed around quite a bit with the texture of the wall to make the image better convey the sense of time and neglect I perceived standing at the location. I hope you like it.
“Abused and Blue at 15″, Nikon D800, ISO 320, f/3.2 at 1/2500 sec., 50mm Click the image for a larger view.
“People have to deal with their issues together; they have to expose themselves and kind of exhaust themselves.”
– Chuck Palahniuk
Sometimes the opening used to let something get out also serves as a way for something to get in. That was my thought as I pondered this aged exhaust vent, mounted vertically about 4 feet above ground level on an exterior wall. This is Central Florida: even at a few feet off the ground, there is no lack of crawling, climbing, slithering, slimy small outdoor critters able to slip through those slots to nest, burrow, die or even reproduce and raise offspring. I shuttered at the thought as I captured this image. Perhaps it is a better subject for a photo than it is a functionally effective exterior vent cover. In any event, I hope you like it.
“Exhausting”, Nikon D800, ISO 320, f/2.5 at 1/8000 sec., 50mm Click the image to view larger size and available print options.