Blossoms

“To be what I am… To voice the things that only I can voice. To bear the blossoms that are commanded of my heart. This is what I want…”~RM Rilke

Shadow flower (1 of 1)

Your voice is your expression and everyone has a unique voice which should be heard. It’s one’s own responsibility to cultivate that voice, through head and heart and then share it with others because a voice unexpressed does not provide a benefit to anyone.  And yet on the other side of the coin,  it is best not to waste it on a head that does not hear or a heart that does not care. In that case, silence is golden.

On a photographic note, this is a very severe crop (maybe 1/15th of the full file). I really love Fujifilm lenses and this kit lens is incredible.  I have yet to upgrade to a newer body and am still using the quite antiquated (for some) XE-1. One day, I will bite the bullet and get a newer model but I think I will wait a couple of years and see what new technology comes with time. I have learned that I do not need the latest and greatest new release of every piece of photographic equipment that comes out. Granted, if money were no object, I’d have purchased the newest out there but money is an object and right now, I can think of better ways to balance my wants and needs.

Receptive

To express your emotions, you have to be very loose and receptive. The unconscious will come to you if you have that gift that artists have. I only know if I’m inspired by the results. ~L. Bourgeois

Hay Is for Horses (1 of 1)
Receptive Horse

Whenever I drive by horses out in a field, I stop. Camera or not. Sometimes there are a herd of them (usually 4 or 5 total) grazing out in the distance and I will call them over and inevitably there will be one or two who come running. Others may not be as receptive to my human overtures and they will glance over to my way for a few seconds and I can almost hear them say, “Pfft, now why would I want to interrupt my day for you?”. But the friendly ones sometimes run up so fast I barely have time to change my camera settings. I am not sure if they are disappointed once they get to me and wonder where the carrots or apples are but they obligingly take a pet or two. If they are lucky, there will be some greenery that I can get to by the side of the fence that I will pull and feed to them.

The likelihood of greenery seems to be small these days. Dry scorched grass is all I can anticipate. Summer has arrived and it should be upwards to 100* in Prescott this weekend; Phoenix will hit 115*. I hiked from 8 AM to 10 AM a few days ago and decided I will need to roll out of bed by 6 AM if I want to truly enjoy my outings. Sometimes it is not the temperatures that get to me, it is the blasting sun from which there is little relief. This weekend will likely be pretty much an indoor, a/c kind of weekend for me.  Come on, summer…don’t fence me in!

Sand

“I always say, if you keep your head in the sand, you don’t know where the kick’s coming from.” ~H Mann

Silence in The Sands
Silence in The Sands

I’m not sure you know where the kick is coming from, ever. I hardly ever bury my head in the sand yet have had my share. Life gives you lots of kicks and if you have not had kicks, you haven’t really lived. So, you get bruised and the bruises heal; you might be left with a scar but even that can fade with time.  I don’t know how to avoid life’s kicks nor would I really want to; a kick can be a lesson or a wake up call. But what I do know about a kick is that you can only be responsible for your own actions and that means getting up again from a kick and not letting it define you.

I’m dusting the sand off as I speak……

Purple

“And when I fall in love,” I began, “I will build a mountain to touch the sky. Then, my lover and I will have the best of both worlds, reality firmly under our feet, while we have our heads in the clouds with all our illusions still intact. And the purple grass will grow all around, high enough to reach our eyes.”~VC Andrews

Scabiosa (1 of 1)And when I fall in love…………..I will build a purple mountain to reach his heart.

Give

“You give but little when you give of your possessions.
It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.” ~K Gibran

give (1 of 1)

Something happened yesterday which kind of jolted me from the “la-de-dah” of my day-to-day life. My Mom was in an accident which resulted in a fatality. She was just fine, no injuries, but another woman did die.  It is humbling when we think of how fragile life really is….if not for a split second here or an inch or two there, my mother could have suffered much more dire consequences. And on the other side of this coin, someone who I do not know is surely suffering a heartbreaking loss. Lives collide, sometimes with life-affirming results, sometimes with dire results, sometimes with no results.The no results ones we do not give much thought to but we surely internalize the dire and the life-affirming ones.

I think of that the things that my Mom has given me (not the monetary things, although there is always a certain amount of sacrifice in that area, too) and I am thankful to her for each and every life lesson, her words of wisdom, her sense of practicality, the random silly moments. And that is what love is: to give of yourself; no one does that better than a mom!

And so today, I am grateful, for that second or two, that inch or two. What was given to me and also what I have yet to be able to give to others. Life is all a big circle, not always perfectly round, filled with twists and turns, loss and gain and that journey along with life’s lessons are what it is all about. When you wisely choose to give of yourself, you are affirming life and that is the path that we all should choose.

Bare

My sorrow, when she’s here with me, thinks these dark days of autumn rain are beautiful as days can be; she loves the bare, the withered tree; she walks the sodden pasture lane.

~ Robert Frost
Birch painting (1 of 1)

There is a certain beauty in gray, rainy days. We had one here in Prescott, AZ the other day. At first, the sky opened up and huge raindrops fell, hitting my skylight and sounding more like hail than drops of rain but drops of rain here, when they do come, can be more like dollops than drops. To me when it rains, it is kind of like Mother Nature saying to us: slow down, have a cup of tea, snuggle in bed a bit! At least that is how I see it; maybe I am just lazy.:) But I feel poetry in the rain.

The above image is a technique that I try to perfect every so often when I see the opportunity in a composition. When motion blur is done well, it creates more of a painting than a photograph; identifiable subject matter but infused with mystery. The motion here is all in-camera, not a Photoshop blur. While I definitely believe in using post-processing to enhance an image, somehow doing this type of thing IN-CAMERA is like creating magic because it is done with your mind, body and instrument (camera) as opposed to just your computer program.  In some ways for me, it is like creating poetry within my camera.

Transform

“Love is a force more formidable than any other. It is invisible – it cannot be seen or measured, yet it is powerful enough to transform you in a moment, and offer you more joy than any material possession could. ~B de Angelis

Black Butterfly (1 of 1)
I am not sure if anything can transform you in a moment but if anything could, it would be love.

It is nice to see that a number of my blogging friends from the past are still here! I am sure that most of you have been much more consistent than I and I do admire that.  I am figuring on easing back into this blogging “commitment” and hoping to transform my inconsistency here. Yes, I always have to make the silly tie in between image, quote and my little blogging blurb. Who knows, maybe that will change in the future as I have yet to decide exactly how I want to structure the writings here but it will be somewhere between a personal diary and my mediocre musings. Some people are open enough to write truly personal things; I am not. Yet I believe that you have to let some of your personality shine through or it becomes too dry, unless you are doing something of a more educational nature, which has never been a goal of mine as my  mind is more like a jack of all trades, master of none! LOL My goal here has mostly been about sharing the image itself and if someone can enjoy that small thing, a glimpse of beauty, a moment of visual pleasure, that may well be enough for me to feel the blog is worth it. And truth be told, I have managed to free myself from the burden of wanting popularity and garnering hundreds of likes or followers. I find that more exhausting than fulfilling and it is too hard for me to keep up with and I actually think it is a hinderance to the artistic process of my photography. In the end, one’s artistic vision is a very personal thing and there is only one person you must please: yourself.

 

 

Sunshine

“Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful; they are sunshine, food and medicine for the soul.” ~L Burbank

Yellow Poppy (1 of 1)
Mexican Poppies

It really is quite hard for me to believe that it has been almost a year since I last posted. I felt I had needed a break from blogging….just a couple of weeks or months and somehow that turned into 11 months. In many ways, blogging is like a journal for me (minus my very personal thoughts). While I appreciated the followers I had cultivated, that has never been a primary motivator for me. I am mostly inwardly motivated; it is part and parcel to being an introvert. People who know me well say “You are not an introvert, you’re not shy and are very social and open!”. But I am an introvert (with extroverted tendencies). I have a very close circle of friends who I let it all out with but choose those people rather carefully. Introverts tend to have very intense and close relationships with their chosen tribe and innately know we burn out if we spread ourselves too thin. Above all, we first and foremost value our own opinions and live in an intuitive and self-motivated way. Accolades are nice but if we are not inwardly happy, we will change course. And my intuition was telling me that I needed a break from blogging, and that is exactly what I did. I just never thought it would be this long!

So I am returning, hopefully spreading a little sunshine with this image. Suck it up, Buttercup and start once again…..