Tuesday, 31 May 2011

# 151: The Creative

The reader, the writer, the imaginator: The Creative.
Both my children have active imaginations and easily become engrossed in what they are reading, writing, watching, drawing, making, creating...both are passionate about different things and it shows in the way they speak enthusiasically and animatedly about their respective passions. It can be a double-edged sword - for passion read obsession. Its all in the spin. I know where they get it from ;0)

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# 150: Snail's pace

After a period of rain I looked for something of interest in the garden, water droplets being one of my favourite thing to photograph, but spotted this snail making his way determinedly across the deck. Luckily I was able to crouch on the grass to get down almost to his level.
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Sunday, 29 May 2011

# 149: Controlled fall

We picked up Jodie's new bike today. The new one is not the next size up, but the one up from that, so she's only just big enough for it at its smallest settings, but it should last her at least three years. That's why this is a controlled fall - its a much heavier bike and she can only just ride it, so when she brakes to stop she tilts to her left to put a foot down and (usually) doesn't let the bike go all the way to the ground.

Once she's adjusted to how heavy it is, she'll be able to ride off the grass, but we'll err on the side of caution for a little while until she's coming to a halt with more confidence.

It doesn't seem like five minutes since her Dad was running behind her last summer after he'd taken the stabiliser wheels off her first one! See this entry.

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# 148: Bristles 'n' Bubbles

We've just finished re-decorating Jodie's room. We left off decorating the lounge/dining room to do her room because we'd promised to do it around March/April time, so at Easter we moved her into the loft room for the duration and stripped her wallpaper. New furniture arrives Saturday - proper grown-up bed, new bedside cupboard, new drawers with a huge mirror on top, and a new tall bookcase. What's the betting she a) still makes herself comfy in my spot at least 3 nights a week when she's supposed to be in her own bed, and b) not all her millions of books will fit on that new unit?! 
As I was cleaning up I noticed the pattern of the detergent bubbles on the bristles of the brush, and that the nylon filament bristles had taken on the colour of the paint in her room.
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Friday, 27 May 2011

# 147: Tea for two

Tea, best drink of the day. I drink several cups of tea every day. I'm not a connoisseur by any means, but I know what I like, and I like typhoo, in a mug not a tea-cup, and with milk, not lemon. And one sugar, thanks.
iPhone image, enhanced in Ps with Nik Color Efex Pro 3 filters.
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Thursday, 26 May 2011

# 146: Looks like rain

Our young tom cat Geordie likes to sit on the window sill and watch the world go by. We live in a cul-de-sac, so there's not much world going by, but he sits and watches anyway. Post processed with Nik Color Efex Pro plug-in.

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# 145: Fir cones

Very simple shot, 3 cones sitting on my laser printer in window light. Jodie and I collect cones when we are on walks sometimes. Processed using Nik Silver Efex plug-in.
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# 144: Balloon flower

I buy plants for my garden based on more than just will it grow well in this soil type and that aspect, I buy plants that will be interesting to photograph. After having lunch with a friend at a garden centre recently I noticed this plant I'd never seen before. This image shows the petals fully open, but the transition from bud to open is amazing - the buds are like little cushion-shaped parcels, and gradually open out in the space of a few hours to completely flat. Its called a platycodon, with a common name of balloon flower.

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Tuesday, 24 May 2011

# 143: Favourite Recipe

Cottage pie a la Rosemary Conley, but I add frozen peas and a generous dollop of HP brown sauce. There are sliced leeks in with the mashed potato topping. Delicious!

Monday, 23 May 2011

# 142: Spirit of Ecstasy

A dream came true today. I have always wanted to travel in a Rolls-Royce, and although I could have had a RR on my wedding day back in 1994 we hired a vintage bus instead which, for the same price, brought all of us from the ceremony to the reception. This afternoon I was driven to a nearby church in a white RR Silver Wraith II, and driven back in a silver one! Two in one day!! :0))) Fab!
So, the reason for this wonderful decadence and luxury? I was commissioned to photograph the two cars for a soon-to-be-launched wedding car hire business. Cool huh? I thoroughly enjoyed my brief Lady Penelope moment. And it rained right as we finished, and there was an amazing rainbow. What an afternoon...

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Saturday, 21 May 2011

# 141: Red ant

I don't like these little guys, they fight mean. We have a lot of them in our back garden, building nests. They're hard to kill, and if they bite you really know about it - the kids scream. I would rather have double the number of smaller black ants that mind their own business and just run around fast if you annoy them.

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Friday, 20 May 2011

# 140: Me & my bike's shadow

I finally went for a ride, after Craig at the bike shop sorted out lowering the seat far enough ;0) I can highly recommend the bike shop in Derby for excellent customer service and value for money. Jodie was giving me advice, she said she'd be my cycling instructor - I haven't ridden a bike for 28 years! So relieved not to embarrass myself in front of her, and the neighbours!! The sun was getting low in the sky and cast a great stretched out shadow, brilliant.
Taken on iPhone, processed using Nik Silver Efex Pro, Holga filter.
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Thursday, 19 May 2011

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

# 137: A Rainbow for Imogen

The day was grey, our hearts were heavy. This post is dedicated to a family who face dark days ahead as they slowly grieve for their beautiful baby girl. Family and friends were asked to wear bright colours to the funeral, and this balloon release sent a rainbow into the sky in memory of Imogen. 
My best wishes go to this lovely family whom I met through Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep. I have been honoured to be able to provide images I hope they will cherish.
With thanks to Imogen's parents for permission to share.
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# 136: Pretty delicious?

The feline residents think so...
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Monday, 16 May 2011

# 135: Solvite

Original and best. Beware cheap imitations.
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# 134: Slimbridge '68; Dartmoor '67

And a red hot poker close up. These are three of my Dad's several hundred slides. I've selected 10 to be professionally scanned as a free sample, tiffs around 10mb, then the archive will follow. Many of them have never been projected, and none have been projected since probably 1981 or 1982. The task of scanning is very time consuming and the quality I'd get from my bog-standard Epson flatbed that's about 5 years old will be inferior compared to the quality of a dedicated slide scanner costing around £3k. It'll be very exciting to have the images on my computer and to share them with the family without the aid of a projector and a nearby white wall, in the dark!
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Sunday, 15 May 2011

# 133: Lady of The Hunt

Riding traditional side saddle. 
Captured at Chatsworth, at the International Horse Trials. And not looking too happy about it either :0}

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# 132: Delicate

Tiny moisture droplets on a seedhead from 'Jack Goes to Bed at Noon'. Shot with 105 macro and a single elinchrom studio light and a light tent.

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# 131: Another birthday

Oliver's turn this time, but its getting to be too many candles now, takes too long to light them, wax drips onto the cake, time to start buying digit candles, next year need a '1' and a '4', because he's now a teen - let the grunting begin.
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# 130: Tomato Stem

Jodie planted a tomato seed at school but we didn't think it was going to germinate. Eventually it did though, and it's growing well on the kitchen windowsill. Jodie and Mark regularly go next door in the summer to water the tomato plants when our neighbours are on holiday; Jodie suggested we go and ask the neighbours how best to look after this plant as we've never grown our own before. I'd never noticed before how hairy the stems are. Shot with the 105 macro, hopefully we might have actual toms to shoot later on!
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# 129: Is it safe to come out yet?

My shiny new bike is settling in and getting to know the other bikes. However as both the children have grown so much, theirs will have to go to new homes in the not too distant future to make room for new ones. Oliver has grown tall enough to ride his Dad's bike. I've not ventured out on mine yet, haven't ridden a bike for 28 years, I can still ride, but its a bit scary! I just need to get my confidence. Bike waits patiently. Jolly good.

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Jodie and Blue

Jodie has been riding since she was 7, over half her life. Just. Ownership is costly, but she's learning life skills and life lessons...