Thursday, February 24, 2011


The last thing I wrote about was being so excited about starting the You Are Your Own Muse photography class.  And then I disappeared which usually means there’s stuff going on I don’t know how to write about yet.  The class has been as awesome as predicted, full of learning.  Which means starting at a certain point, struggling, figuring things out (learning) and eventually coming out the other end better than when you began. 
I am at the struggling part right now. 
I haven’t quite hit my stride with it yet, but I keep trying new things and my eyes keep opening wider.
The biggest challenge for me is letting go of my expectations of myself.  I had these airy ideas of beautiful photos I would make, exposing some ideal spark of goddessness.  But life is not all sunbeams and twirly skirts, my friends.  Some days are hard, and, yes, that too gets caught on film.

I had this idea that I would go out in the forest by myself for a couple of magical hours and come back triumphant with stunning, perfect, happy photos in hand.  But I’ve realized that would only happen in an alternate universe where I have extra time (without kids responsibilities or distractions) to skip in the daisies.  And I know that I wouldn’t be happy with more than a couple of those photos anyway as that’s just not (my) reality.

My photos will be imperfect.  My photos will reflect My reality.  And I will try to love what I see there for what it is.
I’d love to take blocks of time to do formal photo shoots, but I don’t really have blocks of time available so pictures will be taken when I have a minute, when inspiration strikes, and when it feels best to do it.  This realization is making me so happy right now.  I am giving myself the freedom to do this course my way.  Still seriously (I do lots of stuff labeled “homework”), but organically, rather than (self-)imposing rules.


Thursday, February 10, 2011

About Possibilities

I dreamt the assignment was to take pictures of green things.  I had quite the collection of blurry abstract images - the stripe on a mitten, part of a toothbrush, part of my iris.  I woke with a start with iphone in hand ready to shoot.  Sleepwalking again.

I'm about to start Vivienne McMaster's self-portrait photography class (here, I think there's still a space or two left), and I'm just a little bit excited (obsessed).

I'm interested in taking photos (and making art) that tell a story.  I can make a pretty picture but I want to make something that conveys something more.
(I recently found this book - have not bought it but it's on this very subject.)

I'm not cute or precious. But it would be easy to take that picture.
I'm worried I'll look and not find anything beautiful.  Quirky, maybe, but beautiful?
I'm worried that in the pursuit of beauty I'll completely miss the point. That I'll end up with a bunch of pretty but shallow pictures.

But most of all I'm just excited.  I'm excited about getting out the camera and making something. 
I'm excited about possibilities.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Triumphant Muffins!

The other day I stepped out of the shower and realized I had forgotten to wash my hair! 
I was daydreaming about muffins.  Perfectly domed, moist and delicious gluten-free multigrain muffins.  Oh my, they sent my heart a pitter patter.  Just look at these:

Hard to resist, I know.  OK, so maybe this isn't so exciting to all of you so let me explain.  I'm not good at following recipes.  Or patterns, or directions of any kind really.  I get lost in my own town.  really.  It's a small town and I've lived there since the 7th grade. I've made so many bad muffins; flat, hard, soggy, bland, fallen muffins.  And now that I'm wheat-free (and now mostly gluten-free) I'd completely given up on ever making my own muffins again.  I can be good at other things, I told myself.

Enter these babies. 
Shauna of Glutenfreegirl fame has figured out multigrain gluten free flour.  Take a look at her post here.  It's all about getting the right proportions of flours to get that perfect muffin texture (gluten free baking is all about getting the texture right).  And she lists them all (in categories. it's not complicated, I promise) so you have so much freedom to choose.  Now, I didn't actually use her muffin recipe as she cooks by weight and I refuse to convert.  What I did was take the proportions in her flour mix, made my own flour mix and used my own recipe.  The muffins in the picture are Sunny Cranberry Multigrain Muffins.  But they're long gone now.  And there's a smile on my face.

(I'm still tweaking the recipe otherwise I'd post it.  Just one more batch ; ) It's for research.)
(even the hubby went back for seconds and he doesn't normally like cranberries.  or nuts.  or multigrain.)