Saturday, September 06, 2014

I am Keeping My Eye On Autumn...

"There is a harmony in autumn, and a luster in it's sky, 
which through the summer seen, as if it could not be, as if it had not been!"

~Percy Bysshe Shelley

I was going to post these photos yesterday, but my plans changed. Never mind, I am posting them today! I had a pretty good time last week, while out with the new Nikon camera. Here are some photos of that day. Big surprise, they are autumn themed! :) I decided to visit autumn, and my favorite autumn tree, to finally do what I have been saying I was going to do for ages... document the turning of the leaves, on a tree I love like an old friend!

As you can see, the three is on it's way to making a loud, spicy statement! I love the pinks and deep purples, but you can't be in a sad mood when those crimson red leaves sail softly down to the earth. It always makes me hungry for cinnamon red hot candies. In fact, an autumn three in full party mode reminds me of all the candies you might get at Halloween. 

Red = Cinnamon Red Hots
Orange = Candy Corn
Green = Jolly Rancher Green Apple
Yellow = Lemonheads
Purple = Plum Saltwater Taffy
Brown = Reese's Peanut Butter Cup

I have a sweet tooth that goes straight to my soul.

I can't indulge the way I would like to, but I have found that adding a little bit of cinnamon to my diet does a lot to cut my sugar cravings, and actually helps my glucose numbers. I try to take care of my diet and manage my diabetes, and fortunately I do really good in the summer and autumn. A sweet potato with a dash of cinnamon and a dab of butter... yum... and usually doesn't raise my blood sugar. I have had that for lunch, on many an autumn afternoon. I am happy with a camera in my hand, sitting under trees!


I can't wait to see where how the tree has progressed by next week!


It's not summer or autumn, it's Sumtumn.

Mood: Happy

~Me :)

Friday, September 05, 2014

RIP Joan Rivers (And A Story About A Special Watch)

"I'm no cook, when I want Lemon Chicken I spray it with Pledge."

~Joan Rivers

WOW! Here we go again! Comedy has taken a tragic beating this year, with the loss of Robin Williams, and now, Joan Rivers. Two trailblazers, for different reasons, and two people I believe would still be alive, had darkness not overcome them. Darkness by choice for one, and fate for the other. Wait... I take it back... in Robin Williams case it wasn't by choice, I have been close to the edge once or twice myself, and I know that when the specter of suicide comes knocking, and you open the door, it can be the most beautiful sight you can see. It blinds you, and before you know it, you have lost yourself. That is what happened to Robin Williams. I guess I am just still in the anger stage of grief when it comes to the loss of the talent, and the kindness that was the truest part of him.

In Joan's case, well, it was supposed to be an outpatient procedure, but something happened. Who knows what will be discovered? Maybe she would have gone into cardiac arrest walking down 5th avenue, or maybe it was something done wrong at the clinic. We will have to wait and see. All I know is that I will miss her greatly. Fashion already doesn't seem the same without her. It's fashion week in New York, and her voice is missing. That's just wrong. Joan Rivers never had to look for ways to keep herself relevant. She was on top of things. She was brilliant, and she never needed to demand attention, because it was her truth that lead her. Good or bad. I admired her for that.

I have a watch. It was a present from someone I loved very much. She was a friend, and we would laugh at the stupidest things, and we both shared the joy of collecting different things. Sometimes she and I would get together over lunch and share what new piece we had recently added to our collections. One day, in June of 1996, we were eating lunch and she pulled out of her tote bag, a tiny black velvet drawstring bag. She put it in front of me and said "Happy Birthday." I was surprised because my birthday was still weeks away, but I smiled and was happy that she thought of me. I opened the bag, and inside was a gold and black necklace watch, from the Joan Rivers Collection. 

At first I thought it was an odd, if not silly, choice. The Joan Rivers Collection? LOL. Comedienne jewelry? But as I looked at the watch I began, all most immediately, to fall in love with it. It was understated, elegant, and really quite lovely. I ended up wearing that watch nearly every day, for the next 10 years or so, and still do when I am going to some special lunch or event. It's comfortable, and gives my outfits a nice look. I only stopped wearing it when I started carrying my cell phone everywhere. But as I sat Thursday, listening to the news of Joan River's death, I felt nostalgic for that watch, and my friend. My friend passed away in 2005, but wearing that watch makes me smile, because I know it was given to me in love and friendship. And now that the designer herself has passed away, I will smile a little bigger when I remember all the time I spent laughing at something Joan Rivers said. Two amazing women who touched my life, and the watch that created the bridge.

Life Goes On...

Mood: Quiet/Nostalgic/But Okay :)

~Me :)

Thursday, September 04, 2014

What Do You See?

"In all affairs it's a healthy thing now and then to hang a 
   question mark on the things you have long taken for granted."

~Bertrand Russell

So, Alan and I went out with the cameras yesterday, and I spotted this trash can with some of the paint worn off. I immediately saw a crow in the missing paint pattern, while Alan saw a wolf. The discussion of what the pattern was, came down to what each one eats. Crows are omnivores, while wolves are carnivores. So, what do the small spots that are scratched off beneath the animal shape seem to be? I see fish, how about you? And if you see fish also, could it be that the shape is actually neither crow nor wolf, but rather bear?

    So tell me ... what do you see?

Mood: Happy

~Me :)

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Art About Town: Berkeley... "Expanse" By Artist Carolyn Haydu

Addison Streetscape Project
Addison Street, Berkeley, California
February 12th, 2014 

"In the sky there are answers and explanations for everything: 
every pain, every suffering, joy, and confusion."

~Ishmael Neah, 
A Long Way Gone: Memoirs Of A Soldier

From the awesome and inspiring Addison Street Art Walk comes "Expanse" By Carolyn Haydu. With this piece, the artist reminds us of the great contrast of the sky verses the concrete beneath our feet. I know when I begin to feel the stifling feeling of living in a big city, I usually look up and study the sky and look for shapes in the clouds. I love this piece, and drive by it from time to time, just to remind myself that I absolutely can find the art, because it's all around me, even in the sky!

Mood: Happy

~Me :)

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

At The Museum: The DeYoung... Fruit Still Life, By Flora C. Mace and Joey Kirkpatrick

 "Fruit Still Life
By Flora C. Mace and Joey Kirkpatrick
DeYoung Museum
Golden Gate Park
San Francisco, California
May 5th, 2009

"Great art picks up where nature ends."

~Marc Chagall

As we head into the last couple weeks of summer, this photo reminded me of how much I enjoy a big bowl of summer fruits! That is one more of my favorite ways to transition the seasons, by arranging a bowl of the best of summer and autumn fruits and veggies, photographing it, and then making something really delicious and creative with it. That is how I invented my famous Pear and Havarti sandwich that I enjoy every Thanksgiving for lunch. Maybe it's time to see what yummy organic deliciousness is available this week!

Mood: Happy

~Me :)

Monday, September 01, 2014

September 1st, 2014 Happy Labor Day

"If I were a moviemaker, I'd set about hunting sunsets."

~Julio Cortazar
Un tal Lucas

Kinda strange starting the week, and a new month, with a sunset... right? Well, not if you factor in that today is also a holiday, Labor Day. So really, rather than being just another Monday, it's more like Sunday Part B! At least that's how my brain interprets it!

Anyway, later today I plan to spend some time with the new camera as I promised in my last post. I am still not sure what my schedule will be like, but I will fit it in somewhere in the day. Who knows, maybe I will do some new night shots. From what I have seen so far, the new Nikon does really well in low lighting conditions. 

The sunset photo above was done with the new camera. The only editing I did was to resize the photo and a small amount of cropping. I am pretty sure I will be using this camera for most of my sunset photos this autumn and winter. I am looking forward to that. 

 I am enjoying my new picture taking gadget. It had some mixed reviews on, but that's always the way with things. Some folks want the camera to do everything for them, while others want complete control, and the camera itself is a mere formality to their extensive creativity. LOL. I am somewhere in-between. I know there are days when I appreciate being able to just grab the camera and make go. But still, times when I want to photograph something I care deeply about, like the kittens, or Woody Allen, a little more thought is good.

I took four cameras with me when I took the aerial tour of San Francisco, and was thankful because one of them stopped dead in mid-flight! LOL. I think the best photos I ever did was during that flight, and it was the Fuji camera that came through for me that day. 
The Fuji camera and I have had a true love/hate relationship, and sometimes even now, after 4 years of ownership, it still leaves me dumbfounded on how sensitive it can be. The quality of photos that I get from that camera are a bit inconsistent, but when I do get a great photo, it's usually quite nice, and I feel like I have really accomplished something.

Mood: Oh well, you know.

~Me :)

Sunday, August 31, 2014

A look Back At August 2014...

"It's often about the simple things, isn't it? Painting and photography are first about seeing, they say. Writing is about observing. 
Technique is secondary. Sometimes the simple is the most difficult."

~Linda Olson

Well, I don't know about you, but won't be looking back at August 2014 with any warm fuzzies! August was pretty much the ASSHOLE of the year, or at least the summer, but no, I am pretty sure the year. I was right the first time. Sigh.I keep thinking to myself that things hurt so bad in August, and in 2014 in general, that it would be impossible for it all to become anymore painful than it already has... but I think we will have a little of August insinuating itself into September soon. I don't want to think the worst about Joan Rivers condition, but I am afraid... well... sigh. I am keeping good thoughts for her, and yes I am saying a prayer or two. The thing is, she is still so vibrant, so amazing. She seems to have more energy than I do. She must pull through this ordeal... right? August 2014 has been greedy, enough is enough. 

Okay, with that said, and off my chest, lets look back at August 2014...

The cute pink Nikon CoolPix S3600 camera you see, is my brand new toy! It was time to pick up a new pocket sized camera for those moments when you don't have time to fiddle with settings, or the subject doesn't call for something fussier. I have only taken a few test photos, I hope to get out of the house on Monday and really take it through it's features, but so far I am thrilled with the what I have accomplished. I will do a special post next week about my initial findings. Like with all great love affairs, with men, and with cameras, the relationship takes time to build and progress, but it all starts with a first date! LOL, My Nikon and I have a date for next Monday! :)

August saw me doing more tip-toeing through the archives due to Alan's schedule, my prepping for vacation in October, my sadness over the death of such great artists during the month, and my just general lack of inspiration. I did manage to work on a couple new things, and I did some new photography, but I am hoping to really get out in September and do a lot more photography so that when vacation gets here I will be ready to make some art! 

Sound good?

You bet!

Mood: Okay Bordering On Great

~Me :)