Thursday, December 23, 2010

It's Christmas!

Yahoo!!!  I've been flying around like crazy trying to get ready, but I am so glad it's here!!!  Can hardly wait to get home with my family.  One last post and the girls and I are going to hit the road.  My sister Brenda has been asking to see some pics of my Charlie Brown Christmas tree, so here they are.  (I saw this cute little pine tree on the side of the road and decided to cut it down.  It's tacky, but I love it!)  Merry Christmas everyone!!!!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Life Is Short

I just finished reading a post by David DuChemin on his blog called "Life Is Short".  Please, please take a moment to read it.  It is one of the most profound things I have read in a long time, and it has caused me to stop and take stock of my life once again:

Monday, November 15, 2010

Photo Magic

Went home for the weekend and had fun taking pictures, eating good food and enjoying my family.  Doreen (Ree), Bren and I spent hours pouring over photos on Bren's Mac, both ones I'd taken and then Ree's as well.   A great bonding time among sisters I might add.

(These first two are ones I took of random things that caught my interest)

I didn't have a lot that I'd taken of this trip home (got more on Sunday but unfortunately they are still on my camera)  It was Ree who got the jaw dropping shots this weekend.  Just take a look at these uncensored sunset shots at the farm!

Would you look at those hues, she's really working on applying all that knowledge from our Workshop and the books she's reading :-)

Ree would also tell you it's finding that one extraordinary sunset/sunrise.  Waiting for just those right moments of lighting can really make the shot.  There are so many more from this weekend that I'd love to show you but first I'll have to see if Ree wants to share them :-)  I think she needs her own blog to show the amazing things she is doing with her love of photography too.

Now the day isn't done until I show you a couple of shots of the girls.  My bro-in-law and I took our dogs out for a run in the fields, free of leashes.  Oh did they love the freedom, here is one frame of Bailey full tilt booggie.  Gracie was doing the same until she caught wind of my sister Deb outside at her home. (Deb and Al build a beautiful home right beside the family farm, I often take photos of her flower gardens) she took off like a shot with Paul and I screaming behind her.

Deb grabbed her up, and as you can see Gracie has that look of adoration in her sweet doggie face, she just loves to be cuddled.

What a great time all round, now I can't wait for Christmas on the farm!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Far Reaching

The weather has not been co-operating very well so I've not gotten out with the girls to photograph much. As you might have guessed, I have a thing for trees, love to try and capture them in a way that makes you wonder what stories it would tell...

My family say I'm a story teller, and I think they may be right.  Everything I photograph speaks to me.  I may not always be aware of it's voice, but my instincts are to find the angle, the light, that split second when I can 'see' what the story might be.  I wonder is that how God felt while he shaped this world, breathing life and story into nature, into us.  I expect so.  I know that I seldom feel more connected to God and all that is around me than when I'm seeing it through the lens of my camera.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Blackberry Pics

I actually took these pictures with my Blackberry while I was out walking the dogs yesterday - not bad  in a pinch!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

True Joy

Beautiful, brisk day outside - getting ready to go for another walk with the girls.  Here are some pics that I took the other day: 

Most people would say that I have a fairly even personality, and am not given to massive swings in mood, but one thing I can say is that when I am out walking on these trails, I experience the feeling of the true joy of being alive welling up inside of me.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Learning To See Creatively

Absolutely LOVED the photography course with Bryan Peterson - what's not to love though; the location was amazing, and Bryan is a world class photographer who shared his secrets first hand for the many amazing pictures he has taken.  He totally causes you to think outside the box, and to not be afraid of doing whatever it takes to get that creative, outside of the "norm" shot. 

We didn't have a lot of time for any actual photography, but I did manage to snap off a few shots while waiting for the seminar to begin - we arrived at 7:50 a.m. only to discover that the seminar didn't start until 8:30 - apparently they had published three different start times for the seminar, and we got the info that said 8:00 a.m. (only those who know us Graham girls will know how truly hilarious that is!)

This is my niece Olivia, (Bem's daughter) who has the dual qualities of being drop dead gorgeous and totally unaware at the same time.  So glad she decided to hang out with her aunts for the weekend.

And finally, this is a fun shot of my sister Doreen that I like to call "Dueling Cameras".  Notice the reflection of my camera in the lens of hers - I'd love to say that I planned it that way, but as with 99.9% of all my pictures, it was a total fluke that it turned out that way!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Photography Workshop With Bryan Peterson

Super stoked about attending this seminar on Thanksgiving weekend:

Bryan Peterson
Learning to See Creatively ~ Photography Workshop
October 9th, 2010, Ocean Stone Inn & Cottages,  Indian Harbour, Nova Scotia
Join world renowned photographer and bestselling author Bryan Peterson for day long stimulating series of lectures based in part on his bestselling books Understanding Exposure and Understanding Photography Field Guide.

And the best part is my sister, Ree and niece, Olivia, are coming with me!  We can all be intimidated by our lack of photographic knowledge together!  I have Peterson's book, Understanding Exposure and I have to say that as excellent as it is, a lot of it is still Greek to me.  I learn so much better by listening and watching, seeing things demonstrated, so I know this will be great.  And the Ocean stone Inn is incredible; right on the ocean near Peggy's cove.  it doesn't get much better than that!  Now to figure out where I'm going to put everyone to sleep.. and how we are going to manage to leave the house at 7:00am...

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Life's in the Close Ups

Just spent the long weekend at the family farm.  The girls and I had so much fun roaming about the property, taking photographs of the things that caught my eye.  Things that I saw every day as a child, but never noticed the way I notice them now.

Later, Bem came over and we played on her iMac; cutting and cropping.  We got lost in the images that my camera had captured, especially the close ups.  I was trying to capture something when I took the pictures, but couldn't quite "see" what I wanted to see.  It wasn't until we sat down at the computer and started to concentrate on individual portions of the pictures that my vision sprang to life.

So much of life's greatest moments are lived out in the close ups.  Those times when you are head to head, heart to heart with another and the connection flows.  When you see, really see, the importance of the little things, the things that might not occupy much of your time, but add fullness to your inner world.  I think sometimes we look at people and situations from the big picture perspective, and we have the urge to just move on because we are not  seeing what we want to see.  Maybe we need to take a moment to look a little closer, listen a little longer, and we may be surprised at what is revealed as it comes into focus.
Maybe it's time to pay closer attention to the things that fill us with wonder, joy and fulfillment..

Here's to all our 'close ups' that give life it's true value.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Keeping Watch

Like so many we keep a watchful eye on the coming storm, praying for the best...

Longing for those moments when the ocean's steady rhythm calms my inner world....
Beauty and power, a compelling force...

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Beauty Is Absolutely Essential

Thought I would share an excerpt from John and Staci Eldredge's book "Captivating," as I look back over the pictures of the countryside and of the ocean that I have taken this summer.  I highly, highly recommend John's writings, and I couldn't agree with his comments more:

I (John) just let out a deep sigh. That we even need to explain how beauty is so absolutely essential to God only shows how dull we have grown to Him, to the world in which we live, and to Eve. Far too many years of our own spiritual lives were lived with barely a nod to beauty, to the central role that beauty plays in the life of God, and in our own lives. How could we have missed this?

Beauty is essential to God. No-that's not putting it strongly enough. Beauty is the essence of God.

The first way we know this is through nature, the world God has given us. The earth in summer is brimming with beauty, beauty of such magnificence and variety and unembarrassed lavishness, ripe beauty, lush beauty, beauty given to us with such generosity and abundance it is almost scandalous.

Nature is not primarily functional. It is primarily beautiful. Stop for a moment and let that sink in. We're so used to evaluating everything (and everyone) by their usefulness, this thought will take a minute or two to dawn on us. Nature is not primarily functional. It is primarily beautiful. Which is to say, beauty is in and of itself a great and glorious good, something we need in large and daily doses (for our God has seen fit to arrange for this). Nature at the height of its glory shouts, Beauty is essential! revealing that Beauty is the essence of God. The whole world is full of his glory.

(Captivating , 23-24)

Friday, August 27, 2010


This is such a familiar view, the back fields of my uncle's farm.  My dad and one of his brothers owned farms right across the road from each other.  Uncle Eddie's was the family homestead and the larger of the two.  Together they farmed, helping each other out with the various seeding and harvesting chores.  The two families were virtually merged as I grew up; cousins working right along side each other, one for all, all for one.  I spent as much time in my cousins' house as I did my own, eating countless doughnuts and fat molasses cookies.  I have to admit, for two very individualistic, firm headed men, they worked well together, as well as any team I've seen for more years than I can count.  Both have passed from this world, but their essence and echo lives on as I move around the farms, capturing lost moments with my camera. I am taken right back to my childhood as I visit these places, and it touches something long forgotten inside of me as I explore them again.

Fences going nowhere...
Broken down machinery.   Rusted works of art, abstracts my sister may paint someday...

And still the breath of God, in every swaying tree reaching skyward...that's home for me.