The thousand picture project: Expanding my horizons

by DaniGirl on March 25, 2010 · 7 comments

in Photo of the Day

You might have noticed I haven’t been putting up a weekly post with my pictures lately. That’s because I’ve gotten a little lazy with the picture-every-day concept. (As you might also have noticed, I’ve gotten a little lazy with the blog-post-every-day concept, too. I wish I could tell you it’s because my house is now sparkling clean, or that I’ve been diverted by something else equally engaging, but no. I’ve just been a slacker.)

But I am feeling all fired up and excited about photography again, in the lull that has followed the end of the 365 project. Guess what I’ll be doing for 11 weeks this spring-into-summer? I’ve registered for a course called “Beyond the Basics” with SPAO (the School of the Photographic Arts: Ottawa.) How awesome is that? I am beyond excited, and get a little giddy each time I think about it!

Here’s a bit of the precis:

Areas of study will include: mastering camera controls, using light evocatively, understanding composition, controlling colour, file management, digital darkroom manipulation, and inkjet printing procedures.

Gallery visits, discussions and lectures will inform you of the history of photography and create an awareness of the many genres of contemporary photography. Students will be encouraged to pursue a personal mode of expression such as portraiture, landscape, architecture, still life, etc. and build a portfolio of images. Assignment work will be evaluated on a one-to-one basis providing feedback on technical skills and aesthetic vision.

It’s been a looong time since I’ve taken a photography course. Maybe a decade or so ago, I took an Intro to SLR or something type course through Algonquin. Here’s how long ago it was: I didn’t even own a digital camera yet, and we had to submit all our assignments on slides. Seems positively chisel-and-tablet from today’s perspective!!

Over the course of the last year or so, I think I’ve read at least 20 books on photography, not to mention the various online resources I’ve perused. What I’ve really yearned for, though, was that one-on-one critical evaluation and feedback. And the best part is that the course is Friday nights through May, June and July — is there any better time to be hanging out down in the Market with my camera? Seriously, I am giddy!!

Okay, and back to the present, here’s what I’ve been seeing lately.

You already saw the Star Wars post, but seriously, how often do you get to take your kids’ portrait with Darth Maul? I thought it bared repeating.

414a:1000 Welcome to the Dark Side

(Shhh, don’t tell, but it’s a fake TtV. It was actually a crummy shot — drives me crazy that after all this time with a camera, I can still freeze up at key moments! — and I’d thought that a little TtV treatment would enhance the inherent geek factor. It works, I think!)

You’ve also seen this one from the NAC’s Mysterioso show, but I am so pleased with the movement captured in Maestro Everly’s hands that I’ll risk repeating myself with this one, too!

413:1000 Jack Everly and the NAC Orchestra

This is my nephew, Noah, up for a visit for Tristan’s birthday. Isn’t he adorable?

409:1000 Noah

And speaking of adorable, here’s Lucas playing coy during our sugar bush adventure during the March Break:

412:1000 Peek-a-boo Lucas

And speaking of sugar bushes, a mosaic from our trip to the Log Farm. Maple syrup – from tree to taffy!

411:1000 From tree to taffy!

I really love how this picture of Snowball, my friends’ cat, turned out. I called “You vex me, human with camera. Or, you would vex me if I could muster enough energy to care.” I think that about sums it up!

410:1000 You vex me, human with camera.  Or, you would vex me if I could muster enough energy to care.

This is one of those random finds where I was delighted to have my camera with me to capture. This guy must really love Volvos. And yes, as a matter of fact I did take this picture entirely so I could give it a punny title. Because, as I said, ‘He’s primarily a Volvo driver.’ Primarily, get it? Red, yellow, blue? Primary colours? I slay me.

414:1000 He's primarily a Volvo driver

I took this picture of the butt ends of the crayons because everyone is always showcasing the pointy ends of the crayons, while the butt ends are just as colourful and they’re nice and round, too. Help stop the repression, give equal admiration to the crayon butts!

415:1000 Crayon butts

I didn’t take this picture this week. In fact, I took it back in August, and I didn’t even like it enough to post it to Flickr. But I found it this week, and I really liked the light and the green-ness of it. Maybe it’s because I’m pining for summer? Regardless, I gave it a poke or two in Photoshop and decided it needed its own day in the sun, so to speak.

416:1000 Tomatoes redux

And finally, a little through-the-viewfinder love to finish off the post. I wonder if I’ll be able to work TtV into any of my assignments at SPAO this summer? I love how the colours pop, and I got down low and close to his feet to give it the vaguely distorted perspective. It turned out great, but I can now see that it’s time to clean the Duaflex, all I can see is the dirt! (There was some debate on Flickr as to whether I should in fact remove the dust or not. Many said nay, but I find it a little too distracting.)

417:1000 Lucas on the bench TtV

Regardless of the dust, how much cuter could he possibly be with his red cap and blue jeans and sheepskin jacket? Damn, my toddler is cooler by half than I’ll ever be!

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kathleen March 25, 2010 at 2:03 pm

Hey, Dani, congrats on the course! Yay you time, learning stuff, etc… Sounds like a blast.
Great pictures, too. As is my wont, I scrolled through them before reading your commentary. So, naturally, I was trying to work out the perfect Primary /Volvo pun. Then I read and discovered you already had it.
We both slay me.

oh, and hey, I know one of these storm-trooper guys. He’s the husband of a friend. For real! Talk about cool hobbies!
Keep up the good stuff!

2 colleen March 25, 2010 at 3:52 pm

Really just want to pick up Lucas and give him a big slobbery kiss on the cheek. Laughed out loud at your primary colours.

3 ewe_are_here March 25, 2010 at 4:01 pm

Suppose it would have been too much to ask you to wait around until the green volvo came home, too. heh heh

It’s a great picture.

4 mrsgryphon March 26, 2010 at 1:24 am

That course sounds great!! I’m hoping to do something similar in the fall, I just have to find a program here.

Love the Ttv shots – I like the dust, I think it adds to the grainy old-school feel of the picture. Lucas is way too cute for some mere dust flecks to distract from him ๐Ÿ˜‰

5 Elise March 26, 2010 at 10:20 am

I love the face of your nephew. This little guy is just telling us: “hey, I might look like a little boy, but I’m strong as hell, not afraid of anything and ready for new and potentially naughty adventures AS SOON AS you’ve turned that camera away from me.”

Or is it just my imagination?

6 Nathalie St-Pierre Roths March 26, 2010 at 2:23 pm

Congratulation on the photo course. Life is too short to sit and wait to realize our dreams later on…

I love the photos of the sugar bush (Log Farm). You have already natural talent for photography so it should be uphill from now. ๐Ÿ™‚

7 Chantal March 27, 2010 at 7:29 pm

You have so much fun with your photos! It is wonderful

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