Due to recent life events, I have not been very focused. A lot of people know already, but we recently found out we are pregnant! I am days away from the second trimester.
This of course is great news! Tony and I are both excited, and so are our friends and family. I have been fortunate mostly in how I feel, but I have had a few rough days. It has made me less excited about riding in a car for extended periods of time looking for things to shoot. I did have a great weekend a couple weeks ago where I felt ‘normal’ enough to venture out. So, we took full advantage. These are a few things we came across:
Raw Talent, Ennis TX
Field of Green
Penguin, Dallas Zoo
Chimpanzee, Dallas Zoo
After almost year and a half of constant pain, Tony finally had his disc replacement surgery.
This is also VERY good news. He is still healing, but already feels better. He has a long road ahead of physical therapy, but it will all be worth it.
I plan on taking advantage of the ‘ease’ of the second trimester and getting in some simple pleasures while I can! We know we are in for quite the adventure, but we will be as ready as we can be. We have to get be, right?
Back in February, we decided to start a small garden. Living in an apartment does make this a bit more challenging, but not impossible. We started out with a Burpee sprouting system. It is a very basic system, but it has proven to be the best solution for us.
When I was growing up I was responsible for a lot of the garden work at my mom’s house, but it’s been so long that this feels like learning how to use my green thumb for the first time. It’s rewarding to know that pretty soon we will be eating vegetables and herbs that we grew. We basically chose to grow what we will use all the time. Cooking is something that happens a lot around here and tomatoes, cilantro and onions are staples for us.
Once our sprouts started really, well, sprouting, it was time to transfer them.
Turns out gardening is like riding a bike. Once you’ve learned, the knowledge is there. Plus there are always local nurseries, the internet and magazines like Mother Earth News. Yes I am name dropping, but simply out of gratitude. It has been an inspiration since a fellow bus rider in Long Beach, WA told me about how informative it had been for him.
For me having a garden is a win-win. I have learned that photographing the plants is just as exciting and fun as waiting for them to grow. The detail and life being captured in each image has me captivated every time.
Tony has also found a secondary thrill in our garden. The art of Bonsai. He is getting pretty good at it too. It will be interesting to see how it progresses through the next couple of months.
This garden has us both thinking on a grander scale. Why doesn’t every community have at least one community garden? If you contribute time and effort, then you share the rewards. If you do not participate, then buying at a local farmers market could be an option. There are communities currently practicing sustainability, but not enough. Something to aspire towards…
We recently adopted an adorable blue heeler/lab mix puppy. Bianca is what we call her, BeeBee for short.
It has been quite the adjustment for our one year old wire haired terrier (terrorizer) mix, Bodhi. It’s funny how similarly awkward their first encounter was to that of humans.
Bodhi tried desperately to assert his dominance, but was quickly made aware that Bianca had no desire to let that happen. She has been giving him a taste of his own medicine since a few hours after we brought her home.
Despite his best efforts, I think he loves her already. It will be interesting to see how things progress for them as she exceeds him in size, and possibly strength. Something tells me Bodhi will still consider himself the protector of our pack, and Bianca will just keep letting him belief that…
I was recently asked by one of my college Photography teachers if I would like to be the first installment in his new “Graduate Spotlight” page on his blog. Of course I would! So, I did.
Considering that Patrick Keough is one of the strongest artistic influences in my life, I’m humbled that he would ask me to participate.
Patrick will be showcasing one Photo Grad each month, and I look forward to seeing how he puts it all together. I have included the link to it so you can check it out for yourself.
Stanley arrives in Texas
My niece Aliyah recently asked if I could help her out with a school project. Her second grade class in Illinois read the ‘Flat Stanley’ book series and had to send their Flat Stanleys to friends/relatives in different states to have an adventure.
Stanley tries Texas bbq shrimp
This was such a fun project and I was honored to be chosen to help. Flat Stanley had quite the Texas adventure! We took him to the Fort Worth Stockyards as a main part of his excursion, where he met some very colorful characters.
Stanley meets some “outlaws”
Once I started really getting into this project, thinking outside of the box became an obvious solution. Ensuring that Bodhi the Wonder Mutt would not eat Stanley was the beginning of something great. From there I was able to create scenes with them that brought the whole series together.
Stanley & Bodhi ready to go to the lake
Stanley & Bodhi play fetch
Stanley & Bodhi play hide and seek
Being in Texas, it seemed important to incorporate some Texas food culture into this. Since I love to cook this was seen as a simple and enjoyable task. Black Bean Chili with Adobo sauce was served and everyone was happy.
Stanley tries Texas chili
In the end, I sent our dear friend Flat Stanley back to Illinois with a Texas Longhorn souvenir, a letter filled with historical facts and humorous anecdotes and a photo album displaying his adventures. I’ve been told it was a hit with her class!
Stanley gets his souvenir
Aliyah gets Stanley back
Night photography has always been a favorite of mine. Being a night owl by nature, it just feels right.
Some places can be so pitch black and possess a silence so profound, that you can feel it. Depending on the circumstances the possibilities are endless for capturing the tranquil, yet sometimes eerie side of nature.
The area I live in is outside of Dallas enough that I can have nothing but moonlight if that’s what I want. There should be no problem capturing exactly what I’m looking for and more…
Starting today, on a whim, I’ve decided to do a Texas cemetery series. It was a great day for shooting too!
Despite the many deaths I’ve mourned in the past few years, this series is not about me being morbid. In fact, quite the opposite. I plan to capture some life among the death.
Gathering historical data will also be a part of this project. I have a title in mind, but as the series progresses it may change, so for now I will keep that to myself.
No time frame has been set, as I am still unsure of all the details and distance that will be involved. I hope it sheds some light on Texas history, while it also enables my self expression. To be continued…