Mirrored Selfie

Mirrored Selfie by pixygiggles
Mirrored Selfie, a photo by pixygiggles on Flickr.

Via Flickr:
A mirrored self-portrait of myself taken at the Minister’s Tree House last June before they shut it down to the public. It’s not the best quality image which is the reason I didn’t upload it before, but I liked the side-by-side version of me. I decided to upload this one for SouPancake’s “Mirror Images” challenge. I thought, why not share it on WordPress as well since it’s been a while since I posted anything.

The month of April was busy, to say the least. David’s niece was here visiting with us, so I didn’t have a lot of time to put into blogging. Bless my inability to tackle more than one thing at a time. I’ve learned that, sometimes, I just have to “give in” to my quirks and let some things go for the sake of sanity. Thus far, the first 4 months of this year lacks productivity and a clear direction in which to focus my energy. I’ll probably be playing catch-up for the next few weeks. Bear with me. 😉

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Day 366 Project Complete

Day 366 Project Complete by pixygiggles
Day 366 Project Complete, a photo by pixygiggles on Flickr.

The final day of the year – Day 366…. I feel lost. What do I do now? I do plan to continue blogging after this. But where do I go from here? I have concentrated on this project every day, without fail, even when I didn’t want to. I put all of my energy, creativity, and research into it. I was determined to prove something to myself. And I did. I set a goal. I stuck with it. And I accomplished my goal.

My original intent was to learn everything there is to know about my new (then, 2011’s Christmas gift) digital point and shoot camera, a Canon PowerShot A2200. I love this little camera. It has been my constant companion all year long. I am very pleased with the quality of the photos it captured. Sure, some days the photos didn’t turn out all that great; but I blame that more on my mood and operator error than the camera itself.

I am now confident in my knowledge of what my camera is capable of and what it is not. When I looked at this camera for my son last Christmas, the salesperson advised me that this camera performed poorly in low light settings. It was my experience that with a little patience, my night photography turned out to be some of my favorite photos.

More so than just learning about my camera, though, this 366 day photography challenge taught me a great deal more!

  • First and foremost, I’ve learned that I can accomplish something that I set my mind to. I am a very determined person. Even when my frustration level was telling me to quit, I managed to make myself keep going to complete this project. I am very proud of myself for never giving up. As I stated before, I proved to myself that I can set a goal and follow through with it, accomplishing what I set out to do.
  • I learned much more about how to compose my photographs, work with lighting, and the best tweaks to enhance my photos in Corel Photo-Paint X4. I am satisfied with the knowledge I gained about photography and hope to make this a lifelong learning process.
  • This experience has taught me to pay attention to detail in so many ways, not only the details of composition and photography skill, but also the details of my life and the world around me. Never have I noticed such beauty on our planet as when I am at peace in the natural world.
  • Creativity cannot be forced. If I wasn’t feeling particularly creative one day, I decided it was okay to try something different or simply document something from my day. Capturing the little things, the every day simple pleasures and even the mundane, these are the snapshots of my life that will reinforce my memories of this past year for years to come.
  • This taught me a lot about myself. I didn’t realize just how much I obsess over certain things in my life until I watched the entire completed slideshow of my project. I realized that my creativity takes many forms throughout the year – photography, drawing, sketching, other forms of art, videos, music, playing the piano – so many outlets and so little time. I kept myself busier this past year as a result and was more content than I have been in years.

This was certainly a worthwhile adventure. I recommend this project to anyone who has a serious interest in photography, whether you are an amateur or professional. The benefits are well worth the time and effort. While a DSLR camera would have given me a lot more control over what I actually wanted to accomplish, a simple point and shoot camera does not mean that you cannot take great photos and learn a lot along the way!

With the new year comes a fresh start. Last year’s resolution was my first, and I’m happy to say I completed it. This year, I think I’ll skip the New Year’s resolution and concentrate on more short-term goals. Now, to figure out what those goals are….

Happy New Year, everyone! I hope it’s a great one for all of us!

Day 330 Escheresque Self-Portrait

Every year, I try my best to get good photos of the Christmas tree; and every year, I end up a little disappointed with the results. I’m not sure if I just haven’t figured out the proper combination of camera settings or if I’m not using the correct lighting. This morning I tried something that I haven’t done in previous years. I used the morning sunlight to see if that would help. I still ended up with a red glow in all the photos. I’m guessing that it might have a lot more to do with the burgundy curtains in the living room casting a red glow in the room. Our living room tends to be one of the darkest rooms in the house, so even the small amount of sunlight coming in this morning made very little difference in the warm glow that I get even in the evening hours.

Since I’m restricted by the limited settings of my digital point and shoot (no way to manually change the aperture), I may end up trying a roll of film this year in my 35mm. Before I do that, though, I’ll have to refresh my memory in using the manual settings. Even after taking photography classes in college, aperture and shutter speed confused me to tears. I’m not sure if it’s a dyslexic issue or one of those “it hasn’t clicked in my mind yet” issues; but it’s one of those challenges that makes me even more determined to figure it out!

If anyone has some good pointers for taking photos of Christmas lights and trees, please, do share. Also, feel free to share links to online resources that you have found particularly useful. Many thanks!

Day 299 Ahead of Myself

Day 299 Ahead of Myself by pixygiggles
Day 299 Ahead of Myself, a photo by pixygiggles on Flickr.

Well, crap, I did it again! I misnumbered back on Day 279 Burgess Falls. That’s the second time I’ve gotten ahead of myself in numbering my daily photos. I’m not going to be too hard on myself over it. That was only a few days after I found out about losing my SSDI benefits; so understandably, I was (and still am) distracted over it. Now, I need to go back and renumber all of my titles to correct my mistake.

Day 225 Birthday Self-Portrait

Since today was my birthday, I decided that a self-portrait had to be my daily photo. David helped me out by taking this one while we were at Edgar Evins State Park. It was a beautiful day for a hike! We chose a trail by the visitor’s center that was 2 miles long. It was a pretty rugged trail, overgrown in some areas and fallen trees crossing the path in others. It was perfect! That’s the kind of trail we like the best. More photos to come later from our hike; but for the remaining two hours of my birthday, I’m just going to relax before heading to bed. 😉

Day 73 Self Portrait

Day 73 Self Portrait by pixygiggles
Day 73 Self Portrait, a photo by pixygiggles on Flickr.

Via Flickr:
I haven’t done a self portrait yet for this month, so I snapped this one while I was enjoying the warm sunlight and sketching. It was a beautiful day to be outside.

This is one of the sketches I was working on today. Hand lettering takes forever! But it is very relaxing, especially when listening to music. I’m not sure who said this first. I saw the phrase the other day & thought it would make an interesting sketch.

Self-Portrait

I’m starting a new tradition for myself. Draw a self-portrait every year on my birthday. I can think of no better way to spend my birthday than drawing while listening to music, my favorite way to spend the day. 🙂 Medium – pencil & colored pencil