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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

rural inception

Last night was date night.  Our idea of a good time consists of hamburgers in Saratoga, an hour or so of coffee and reading foreign magazines at Barnes and Noble, then off to a movie, and a moonlight ride home with the top down. Oh, and an ice cream cone.

The film we saw was Christopher Nolan's Inception , and from what I'd read on imdb and heard from reviews, I knew it would be challenging. But I was "along for the ride", so to speak, and I was not disappointed.  The visuals and special effects were stunning, Leo's performance brilliant, and a lot of it was filmed in Paris!

The whole concept of being the architect of a dream fascinates me.  As one who has dwelt in elaborately constructed daydreams since I was a toddler, I can relate, on some level.  I often tried to turn my daydreams into night dreams, but that could not be done.  I have, however, watched as my daydreams became reality as I grew older. Or, as I grew closer to the Lord, and He drew closer to me.  Spiritually speaking, I believe He places within me the desires of my heart.  This was my devotional verse for today:

Delight yourself in the LORD, and He shall give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the LORD, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass. ~ Psalm 37:4,5

Artistically, I have been trying to "build" a photo painting from components found in my own photographs. Sort of the architect of my own dream landscape. This is my "rural inception," constructed from elements from 10 of my photos.

rural inception

The figure is from a photo of Pierro della Francesca's Madonna at the Clark Museum.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

cooling down the "painterly" way

march farm

The heat has been pretty intense this past week, so in my search for something "cool" to "paint", I happened across this image.  Of course, by paint, I mean digital painting, and the new textures I used are just perfect for this.  They are called summer painterly textures from flypapers, and I'm really enjoying using them.  I also added a gesso texture to give it that heavy paint feeling, almost like impasto.

And here is a cool evening from last spring on Neil Adam's "Up and Over Farm".  I'll be posting more of his farm, as it's some of the most beautiful land in the county.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Joyeux "La Fête Nationale" or Happy Bastille Day

I'm sorry, but I forgot to wish you a. well, what it says up there...If you're French you say "La Fête Nationale", but here in America we call it Bastille Day.  July 14 is the day the French celebrate the storming of the Bastille, like our Independence Day, but they don't really wish each other a "Happy July 14" like we do.  So in honor of that day I'll post a photo I took in France last summer at Marie Antoinette's Hameau.  

Possibly the most enchanting place I've ever visted.  Someday I'll post  several photos from there [at Versailles] on the Paris page.  But for tonight...a magical French fantasy...

Thursday, July 15, 2010

summer in washington county

It seems to happen every year.  We forget that church goes on a summer schedule and meets an hour earlier, so we arrive an hour late, see the full parking lot, and turn around and head for home.  Oh, we could go in.  People are used to our, shall we say, flakiness!  But this Sunday we decided to  get ice cream, listen to Charles Stanley and drive around our beautiful county, soaking up the rural beauty.  All of the fields have had their first haying, and these lovely hay sculptures populate many of the fields. I took a lot of colorful shots, but I tried to make this photo look as old fashioned as I feel when we drive through our unspoiled farmland.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

working with a model

I used to work with my husband as a wedding photographer, and I always liked doing the bridal portraits the best. But when my daughter took over our business, I was allowed to "retire" and devote my time to fine art photography.  I still love to photograph women, however, and I recently had the opportunity to shoot one of the loveliest of my former students, Britt.  Having photographed her Senior portrait a few years ago, and some candids of her on a trip to Paris, I knew she was a marvelous model.  Britt is an art student in college now, but I hope this portfolio can help to get her some modeling jobs.

We spent about 2 hours out in the garden and up in the barn, and I didn't go for any conceptual shots, but  just let the shoot flow.  I knew I wanted to accentuate those amazing eyes and lips, so I shot a series of head-on , evenly lit head shots.  The one above is textured with another shot of rose petals, and suggests her sweetness and femininity.  I love the pink tones, but I like it black and white, as well.

I found this headdress in the barn, and had used it in the early '90s and then forgotten it.  It was perfect for creating this Egyptian composition.  I call it "Queen Neferbritti". :~)))

I added the tear on her cheek in Photoshop.

In my vintage '50s hat

Tess of the d'Urbevilles

And this one ended becoming this one...

Lady Brittany

I have a feeling that I'll be editing this shoot for a long time to come!  Isn't she a beauty?  So many ways to present her.  And I hope it brings me some adventurous girls for Senior Portraits!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

La peinture en plein air

Recently I took a plein air painting workshop with  Harry Orlyk, the best landscape painter in our county.  I am certainly no painter, but I love the discipline of workshops that force me to get out there, set up an easel in God's gallery, and really spend time admiring creation and trying to put my impression of it on canvas. Harry has a great love of the land, and his distinct style captures the wonderful feeling of our rural area. I spent 3 days in some beautiful locations, in sublime weather and even though my paintings aren't finished yet, I thoroughly enjoyed myself.

Harry's palette.  I was surprised to see how much paint he puts out!

Here Harry begins to paint a scene at the river's edge.  Look at how large his brush is, yet he wields it like a pencil, sketching in his scene.

The painting is taking shape, but the light is changing.  He'll come back tomorrow to finish it.

Other students did great work!

Cindy lives close by, so I expect to see many more of these by summer's end!

This students filled her whole trunk with paintings...

Happy Independence Day!

We had a wonderful 4th of July, with company for the long weekend...lots of warm weather...tubing on the river...cookouts...s'mores...fireworks...small town parades...talking and rocking on the front porch...naping and reading on the back porch...and a Sunday morning promise to pray for our nation...
If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
2 Chronicles 7:14

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quid.di.ty The real nature of a thing; the essence; the essential nature or quality of something that makes it distinct and different from other things and establishes its identity

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