Monday, March 30, 2009

No Portraits Yesterday

Last weekend I shot the one-week old portraits of Allyssa and this week I was all set-up to do the whole family, but due to some "bug" going around, my oldest granddaughter, Ashley, was not feeling up to par. We'll have to try this again in a couple of weeks. With any luck, the weather will be good and we can try some outdoor shots.

Speaking of outdoors, my original plans for this past weekend was to hop on the Bobcat and start scaping the grass from the garage/studio building site, but that didn't go right either with cold, rain, wind and even snow flurries. Now we have to wait for the ground to dry out again. I'm starting to wonder if we will ever get started on this project, but then again I've been in Indiana all my life and should know how wet and unpredictable spring can be. We'll just watch the weather and wait and work when we can. My goal is to get this project completed before summer so I can spend my free time working on taking Senior Pictures. I've decided I really like taking portraits and would like to shoot both indoor and outdoor venues. So maybe "Saddleback Hills Photography" will have a future and keep me busy doing what I love.

So, being bored this weekend, I decided to play with "Woody", the green screen and digital backgrounds. It just goes to show that there is always something to take pictures of. What do you think of these?
Swimming under Water
Going for a hike
Getting Sunburned on the Beach
A Walk in the Park

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Woody's Family

I've been playing with manikins again. As you can see, I have picked up some in different sizes, now I have a whole "family". As soon as the weather gets better, I plan on taking the family outside for some adventures.

A update on the studio/garage - This last storm through our area missed us so the ground is continuing to dry out. If this keeps up, hopefully this weekend we'll get the building site cleared of grass and get the corners staked, so we can get the post holes dug and start the construction.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Newborn Shoot for Allyssa

Since my daughter is recovering from Gall Bladder surgery, I took my camera and props to her house. Allyssa was sound asleep when I got there but soon woke up hungry. We managed to get the basket pictures between eating and deciding she was still hungry. I didn't get as many pictures or poses as I had wanted due to additional visitors being at the house and Allyssa's unending appetite today. Here are some of what I shot, CC welcome and appreciated.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Allyssa and parents are back home

Allyssa will be 1 week old in a few hours and is spending only her second night at home. Angie was released from the hospital today for the 3rd time in a week, this time minus her gall bladder. Let's hope nothing else disrupts getting settled in. I had originally planned on taking more formal portraits of Allyssa and her proud parents here at my house tomorrow but now that she is recovering from surgery, I'll go there to see what I can get.

Check back tomorrow evening to see pictures (yeah, I know I'm getting behind again) and I'll try to start posting more frequently now that spring (and Allyssa) are both here. I look forward to your feedback on my first official newborn shoot.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

What next??

No picture today, just an update. Yesterday Little Miss Allyssa went home but today she is back at the hospital. Oh, not for her, her mommy, my daughter had a sudden gall bladder attack. I found a text message this morning telling me that Angie, Matt and Allyssa were back at the hospital. Yesterday was also their 2nd wedding anniversary. They were getting ready to go out to dinner when she suddenly got hit with the pain. Around midnight they went to the ER and about 5:00 am she was admitted and will probably have surgery Friday.

My husband picked up the big sisters, Ashley and Destiny, after school, told them to pack a bag and brought them to our house. So no time for pictures tonight. Right now, trying to get the homework finished and get them to bed (so I can get to bed). This old woman (me) hasn't been getting enough sleep this week and I'm tired. You can run on "new baby adrenaline" for so long. Good Night

Monday, March 16, 2009

An Opinionated Little Girl

I just had to post this one. She looks to be showing us what she thinks of her new surroundings. LOL Actually she seems to be very comfortable and even tempered. I have heard minimal crying and very little fussing at all.

I just had my Canon P&S with me but it actually takes some pretty decent pictures for only 5 mp.

I had to get the cap off to show how much hair she has. Hopefully she'll keep most of it.

They are leaving the hospital tomorrow so I probably won't see her again until the weekend. By then she will have changed quite a bit. It's been 8 years since I had a grandchild this size. The oldest grandson is 16 and driving now, gee, I'm getting OLD.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Presenting Allyssa Madison

Well, here she is at 8 hours old. You can't see the head of thick brown hair here, but she has a lot of it. She has quite a few little scratches from her own fingernails, but other than that pretty much a perfect little girl. From what Angie is telling me, she eats like a little piggie, which is a good thing.

I didn't get a picture of her and her 2 big sisters but I will after everyone gets home and settled.

Check out the long little toes on this kid, and they are ticklish too. Not a whole lot to say at this point, just stay posted for new pictures as I get them taken.

We have a BABY !!!!!

My daughter dropped off the "big sisters" with us yesterday morning so they could head for the hospital to have the labor induced (she was just past her due date). While at our house, I wanted to get one last picture of that belly. So who better to pose with her than Woody, my new little friend. So here is Woody "kissing" her very round belly.

We waited around the house for on a phone call to bring the girls in to the hospital. Well, we got bored and went shopping which at least put us in town. We bought some baby things, got a bite to eat and got to the hospital about 7:00 pm. Just after midnight, when the girls were crashing fast, Angie's labor had stalled so she told us we might as well take the girls home and put them to bed. The picture below was taken about 7:30-8:00, with a long way to go (we just didn't know it yet).

When I got up this morning, I had 2 text messages -

5:06 am - "Still baking. Stuck @ 9 1/2. Getting there tho."

6:38 am - "Allyssa Madison 5:57 am 7 lbs 8.4 oz 19 1/2 inches"

We'll be heading back in to the hospital later so tonight's post will have pictures of my newest granddaughter. I hope you won't get to bored with seeing her because this will probably be the most photographed of all of my grandchildren. Especially with me and my camera and this being the first grandchild on Matt's side.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Still Playing with "Woody" and friends

When I get into something, I tend to jump in with both feet. After my husband bought me the manikins, I keep trying to think of poses to put him (or them) in. I stopped at the Subaru plant to drop off a package for my contact which put me a few miles from Michael's (Hobby and Craft store). I decided to look around for things to take pictures and ended up getting Woody a flag to salute.

While wandering the aisles I spotted these wooden puzzles in the educational section. I ended up with 3 different ones, the Tarantula, the horse and a deer which I have yet to assemble.

The deer may be in my next post plus whatever else I can think of for Woody to do.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Playing with "Dolls"

I have seen (and admired) many of the pictures I've seen using "Woody", the manikin used to study the human form and movement in art classes. Yesterday when my husband was in town he checked at Hobby Lobby and found them. He ended up buying me several of them so I could play with dolls taking pictures. I have several more posted on my Flickr photostream if you want to check them out.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Yesterday's Deliveries

I tried to post these yesterday but the weather interupted my satellite internet service and I lost the whole post so I will try it again this morning.

Due to some "communication" issues with Menard's we had to accept some of our construction material about a month before we had planned. This meant we had to get the site cleared for the building. This also means that as soon as Mother Nature dries out the "mud pit" we can actually get started putting the garage/studio together. Below is a picture of where the building will be. I drew lines on the picture to show where the building will be.

Yesterday morning I got a call about 7:45 telling me that the materials were being loading on a truck and that they would be delivered shortly. Around 9:00 the truck showed up and here is the first pallet of construction lumber coming down the drive.

After trying to find suitable spots to park pallets be got to the BIG stuff. Check out the 6 x 6 posts that hold the building up. The longest is 24 foot long. My big concern is how to stand these things up in a 4 foot deep hole, but thankfully my neighbor, who works in construction has offered his assistance, which is greatly appreciated.

This whole process will be documented with photos. I plan to take a picture standing in the same spot as the first picture and try to string them all together as a movie so we can see the building go up in a few seconds. We don't have a goal for a completion date, but I definately don't want to be working out in the sun when it is 80° to 90° outside. Check back for updates (and/or frustration vending).

Friday, March 6, 2009

My First HDR Attempt (Thanks Candy)

After posting the Arch picture yesterday, Candy asked if she could borrow it the use the HDR techniques on it. Candy's version is in my Flickr photostream. She also turned me on to the software she used so now I have downloaded it and below is my first HDR attempt using the Arch picture.

This will be a short blog since I have to get to bed soon. We are having some of the building materials delivered in the morning, so you can guess what pictures will be posted tomorrow.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Another Road Trip

Today was a long day. A colleague and I took a road trip to the St. Louis area to visit a supplier. One day over and back and getting anything done turned into a 14 hour work day, but the good news is, I don't have to work tomorrow. On our way back, we took I-70 through St. Louis and took a slight detour so I could snap a few shots of the Arch. I had been there one other time but that was about 30 years ago.

Most of the drive back was pretty boring and seemed to take forever. By the time we reached Indianapolis, I decided to get my camera back out and play with the lights on the road. I took the next 2 (from the passenger seat) using about a 6 sec exposure going about 70 mph. I thought the two below made for some interesting pictures. It took a few minutes to figure out the green lines. It was the green from the overhead information signs reflecting back into the light fixtures on the other side of the interstate.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Still behind but not as bad . .

I'm still behind in posting but not as bad. Tonight's picture is a second attempt at my "Daily Challenge". The challenge is "Before and After" so my original plan was to take a potato and transition it to potato chips. The pictures in the camera looked pretty good so I started scrunching on the few unbroken chips that I had found in the bag. I plugged the memory card into the computer and to my total dismay, I realized that I had bumped the ISO way up last might trying to take some star pictures (with no luck, I might add) and had forgotten to return it to ISO 100. The pictures were too grainy to use and all I had left were the potato chip crumbs so now I needed another idea.

Still on the same train of thought, I retreived a lone onion from the refrigerator that I had used in a vegetable still life earlier. So now the plan was to transition from an onion to onion rings and here is the result which I like much better. It just goes to prove that sometimes you need to take a few wrong turns to reach your final destination.