Sunday, February 28, 2010

365 Project Update ~ February 2010

Still keeping up with my 365 project. Sinus pressure and earache finally going away, so maybe I'll get out and shoot some stuff soon. I hope so, it's starting to look really nice outside.

Lava Lamp ~ 59/365
 Red glitter through glass. A strange lava lamp. The theme for this week is "Through Glass." Cheating a little here, but I'll make up for it when I'm feeling better. :)

Friday, February 26, 2010

Miniature Winter Landscape

I took this photo of a snowy, sparse landscape at the beginning of the month. I loved the look of the vertical trees, the horizontal shadows, and the wind-dimpled snow.

Abstract Landscape

That was before we got hit by yet another giant snowstorm. And I kept forgetting to take a picture of what it looked like with more snow, but I snapped this next one after some of it melted. It's a different time of day and the shadows play different.

Snow-Filled Landscape

Last week, you could barely see the tips of these trees. As it is, you can't see all of the trees that were in the original picture. The saplings have been blown around in the window, creating little holes around them that didn't exist in the first photo. And do you see the footprints in the bottom right-hand corner?

Critter Hole & Tracks

What the heck was living in there? It burrowed out, and I saw footprints leaving, but it doesn't look like they came back. Hmm... It was probably a thirteen-lined ground squirrel, otherwise known as a gopher! They're everywhere around here in the summer.

Still sick, but feeling a lot better. I think I'll go sledding tomorrow. Provided I bundle up!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Colonial Warehouse

I've been sick and had an ear infection. A bad enough ear infection that it gave me a touch of vertigo. Needless to say, I haven't exactly been out and about taking pictures. I've barely been holding on to my 365 project! But it has been a week since my last blog post, so I thought I should put something up.

Colonial Warehouse - Back

This is the Colonial Warehouse, located at 212 Third Avenue North in Minneapolis' Warehouse Historic District. It was originally constructed in 1885 to be the headquarters of the Minneapolis Street Railroad Company, later named Twin City Rapid Transit Company. The bottom two floors of the Romanesque Style building are part of the original design. The top two stories resulted from an addition that occurred in 1909.

Lit Hallway

Unlike many other buildings in the Warehouse District, this building wasn't originally meant to be a warehouse. At first it housed the transit company's general offices within its 161,179 square feet, as well as the paint and woodworking shops during the horse-drawn streetcar era. It later served as a powerhouse when the system changed over to a cable-car line. I couldn't find confirmation, but I believe after this, it was turned into a storage warehouse. Later it housed a paper company and grocery wholesaler at separate times.

Interact Center Art Gallery

Now it has been converted back into office space. A multitude of creative enterprises call this place home, including The Onion and the Interact Art Center and Gallery. It was a fun place to run around with my camera.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Photography Assignment #5 ~ Still Life

A still life is a work of art depicting mostly inanimate subjects. Common subjects are everyday items which may be natural or man made, like food, flowers, plants, drinking glasses, books, jewelry, coins, etc., and are arranged in an artificial setting. Still life works give the artist creative license to arrange design elements within composition purposefully, unlike landscapes or portraits.

As with all photographic techniques and styles, attention to lighting is absolutely critical. When photographing still life, there is the potential for a boring image. Shadows and highlights add drama and emphasis.

Bread & Fruit

Still life art usually isn't just a bunch of inanimate objects thrown together. Still life art often contains symbolism relating to the objects depicted, often religious or allegorical. This was part of the challenge of this assignment.

Bread, in its many forms, is among the most popular foods in the world. In various cultures it is a symbol of fertility, birth, life, death, and more. It can be a peace offering and when we "Break bread," we usually are meeting someone new often over a nibble or two.

Apples appear in many folk stories and religious traditions, often as a mystical, enchanted, or forbidden fruit.

Oranges are symbols of love and marriage. Brides traditionally wear orange blossoms in their hair or carry them in their bouquet at their wedding.

Bananas, not surprisingly, are symbols of fertility, potency, and prosperity.

As a tool, a knife can be a symbol of utility. Depicted here it was used to cut the bread, and therefore was useful. Knives can also be defensive or offensive weapons. In defense, it can save lives and in the wrong hands it can take them. In this case, the blade of this knife is pointed at the food, away from the viewer as a sign of peace. Additionally, the bread is on the lighter side of the image while the knife is in the shadows on the darker side. The knife is also separated from the food, but still close-by.

A note: Because of the low light and the brightness of the bread, it took a bit of playing with the white balance to get this picture right but it was totally worth it. Many of the photos turned out too yellow, this one was perfect.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Tri-Color Pepper Couscous Transformation

I've been meaning to do another lesson, assignment, and another inspirational photographer, but I've been running short on time in general lately. About the only thing photography-related that I've been absolutely sure to do is following-through with my 365 project. But I'm also trying to keep posting regularly. So the 365 project is  where my photo comes from today.

Couscous & Peppers ~ 47/365

Last week, I took pictures of three bell peppers to release myself from the monotony of photographing snow. This week, I turned those peppers into cous cous. After I fluffed it with a fork, I realized its reflection on the stainless steel pot fit perfectly with this weeks' theme of "Blurred Reflection." So the colorful food photography continues!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day! I hope that the singles and the paired are having a good day. I am! I had a special delivery today, and though waiting for it to arrive delayed our lunch plans, it was totally worth it.

Chocolate Covered Strawberries
After they arrived, he said he wasn't sure if it was cheesy to give a girl food for Valentine's Day. I told him chocolate is always perfectly acceptable for a woman for pretty much any holiday. And then I reminded him how much I love food.

Edible Rose Bouquet
This 1-dozen chocolate covered strawberry bouquet is from Edible Bouquets. The chocolate covered pineapple and orange slices shown below are, too. All of them are 100% delicious and I highly recommend them.

Chocolate Dipped Orange & Pineapple 
Happy Valentine's Day everyone!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Color in a Dreary World

So I'm a little sick of the winter weather theme lately. Prismatic snow, huskies in snow, even a traveling snowball over at the True to Words blog for Friday Photography - enough! I refuse to put another snow picture up this week! Here, have some beautiful, brightly colored bell peppers!

Tri-Colored Peppers

They were on sale at the grocery store, looking so delicious and summery I could not pass them up. Then I thought they would make an interesting photographic subject. Much more interesting than the snow.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Huskies Love Snow

Huskies love snow. At least someone does. Usually I do, but forgive me if I'm a little grumpy with our Winter Frickin' Wonderland here in Minnesota. It has been an unusually snowy this year, but I guess after our rainy cold summer, I expected it. Give me a few days, I'll probably be a lot more excited once the roads have been semi-clear for more than 48 hours. In the meantime, I'm cheering myself up by watching these two frolic in the snow.

Calvin Leads Spirit

He is 100% Siberian husky, she is a Siberian-Labrador mix. Does that make her a designer dog like all the other mutts they sell for exorbitant amounts of money? We could call her a Sibrador or a Laberian. Either way, she's not for sale! :) Sometimes I want to sell him, though.

Snow Bounding

Really, huskies do make it easier to enjoy the snow. Watching them take such joy in changing a pristine, sculpted snow landscape into a trampled mess with their bounding and wrestling is highly amusing. It makes the cabin fever just a little bit easier to deal with. A little bit.

Non-Pointers Pointing

Monday, February 8, 2010

Winter Frickin' Wonderland

Okay, I love Minnesota. And I love the snow. Really I do. But this has become ridiculous.

Prismatic Snow

It's snowing. Again. More. Still. However you want to phrase it. All of my plans for taking the camera out and about have been thwarted, if not by wicked roads than by wet, sloppy snowflakes in my camera. There is only one thing that is helping me make it through the cabin fever I'm experiencing. Well, maybe more than one thing. But right now, it's the main thing.

Coffee Beans ~ 39/365

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Observant and Detail Oriented

As I've become more involved in photography over the last two years and really plunging in over the last few months with the new camera, I also have become more observant. I've always been detail oriented and often notice things other people don't. Now that I'm running around with a camera looking for interesting things to shoot, it's amplified. Looking up at the moon, stars, and clouds, gazing down at the ground, or examining common things to find what makes it different, I really feel like I'm taking a slower, closer look at life these days. I feel like photography is partially responsible for that.

Snow Arc

I was trudging around in the snow trying to take footprint pictures for my 365 project last week when I came across this. The wind whipped the weed back and forth so much that it brushed an arc into the snow. Something I would have missed entirely were I not more inclined to slow down and observe what's around me.