Homeschool Days

We have reached six weeks since I’ve started homeschooling my fourth grader. I find it more inspiring to chunk the homeschooling into sections rather than looking at the whole year. :-) I have four children divided into three completely different types of schools. My oldest is in the public school, we’re homeschooling my fourth grader, and my two youngest attend a nature-based charter school. I have found that it takes dedication, organization, and sometimes an internal push to get through the homeschool day. However, I am truly loving it! I enjoy not only spending more time with my son but feel honored to see first-hand his progress in many areas. Since he’s home, we’ve been able to add a music lesson once a week along with his curriculum. I have an old upright piano, which is from the earlier 1900’s, that belonged to my father’s cousin. I played this same piano growing up and it’s heartwarming to see it loved by my son.
Homeschooling hasn’t left me with much time to write here on my blog or post on my Facebook page. I do have some projects that I’m working on and I hope to share those very soon! I’m constantly looking for that balance in time. :-)

I purposefully shot the photo below in a high ISO because I felt more grain in the picture would help capture the true age of this beautiful instrument. I think sometimes we toss a picture, or may be disappointed in it, due to the grain (or noise) in the photo. I used to say, “Oh! That would be perfect if it didn’t have a lot of grain.” However, different lighting, different experiences, different moments are captured in the purest sense that they are meant to be. I feel it’s better to embrace it and see the history of those moments.

Since it is a dreary cloudy day, the low lighting helped me out today. :-) Shot with my 100mm lens, f.stop 2.8, ISO 2500

Hugs,
Christina

piano 1

Wood Prints

I am very excited to now offer wood prints through my Etsy shop. After shooting and printing on them for most of the year, I have genuinely warmed up to them. Wood prints are definitely unique-no two are alike because of the wood grain. I feel it truly takes the right photograph to “fit” a wood print. Similar to a black and white print, not every picture looks good processed or printed that way. As I’ve printed more on wood, I’m really falling in love with the vintage way the photograph is expressed. I think the nature photographs really pop printed on the wood.
If you’re considering printing a picture of yours on wood, there are a couple of important things to know. One, the picture will change color to more muted warmer tones. A bold green will be a warmer, richer, deep green. Also, you will loose a little clarity in your print because it becomes part of the wood. Since each piece of wood is unique, you’ll have the natural grain that shows through to the print. Personally, I really like it (if you have the right print).

I just added my first wood print to my Etsy shop and hope to add more soon. It’s taking me a while since I like to look at each piece to know if it can be carried in a wood print. Here is a sample of the one that I added to my Etsy shop today. The first picture is the original and you can compare it with the warmer tones on the wood.

Growth 2 wm 1

Wood Print 1

Wood Print 2

Wood Print 3

Wood Print 4

If you would like to know more about the wood prints, you can visit my Etsy shop here: https://www.etsy.com/shop/TheBeesKneesNC?ref=shop_sugg

Hugs!
Christina

Inspiration

Where do you find your inspiration? It doesn’t have to be anything related to photography, I just like to hear from you where it leads you in life. It’s so easy to create patterns in our lives whether it’s through something that inspires us or through something completely different that we hope to never follow. We may fall somewhere in the middle of that too. I think all three paths have led me at one time or another. So…..I started really thinking about what inspires me. This had to do with my photography but also in life. What areas am I wanting to create more of? I know when we put a lot of thoughts towards one area, we can easily create more of “that” in our lives. Was I (am I) thinking the way I want my life to be? This is truly an area I think on daily. :-)
For my photography, I asked myself over and over what was inspiring me. What was it about photography that I loved, that sparked my heart to shoot? Time and time again I came back to the same inner answer-Nature. Nature that beholds the natural beauty all around us. The here and now of Nature. The history of time’s past of Nature. There are so many things that can unfold when we really look at what is around us.

I’m certain I’ve posted this picture in an old post, but it is one of my favorites. I believe it is the last tower of an old mill in our little town, Belmont. I climbed the broken steps to reach the right point I wanted to capture in this photo. I love this photo for many reasons. I maneuvered my way around until I had the composition just right-the old mill tower framed with the tree. You would never know that a main road is directly behind it, homes to the side of it, and our main street in front of it. When I look at the picture, I’m reminded of a time long a go when this was a functioning mill town and am reminded of the tracks that end right before it. I can get lost in the memory of its history. To me, that’s what photography is about. When you glimpse at a photograph, what does it say to you? It’s an area that I am hoping to constantly improve upon.

Old Mill 1 wm

Hugs for an inspiring weekend,
Christina

It’s in the Details

Oh, how I love a detail shot. Looking through a tree to find the one leaf that is hidden in the middle so it shows the contrast in light from the leaves above and the ones below. Walking in a slow circle around a flower until I feel the composition is just right to express its true beauty. Seeing a tiny, tiny flower on a big shrub and know that it will just pop with my macro lens.
I love the detail shots, the ones where the composition is simple but full at the same time.
I shot these pictures last night at Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden while walking around enjoying the ZimSculpt exhibit with terrific friends. I honestly have never taken a picture of clouds before but a thunderstorm had just come through and I liked the contrast of light to dark clouds. I found it interesting that I could stand in the exact same spot and, with moving very slightly, could get a completly different shot of composition of colors. I think it’s definitely something that I’ll play around with some more.

Hugs to all for a wonderful weekend!
Christina
wm 1

wm 2

wm 3

wm 4

wm 5

wm 6

wm 7

ZimSculpt

I had the pleasure of visiting Daniel Stowe Botanical Gardens last night to see the Zimbabwean Sculpture exhibit-ZimSculpt. It was breath taking! Each piece that is carefully placed around the gardens was hand made using a chisel, hammer, points, rasps, and chasing hammers from one piece of stone. You’ll notice the different textures and colors on some of the pieces based on how the artist sculpted and sanded the layers of the stone. Each piece is unique to the artist’s vision and you will not find two alike. The pieces are made from four generations of artists raging in age of 16 to 100 years old. All pieces in the garden are for sale and will be on exhibit until the end of September. If you’re local, I highly recommend going to see this magnificent exhibit! If you are not local and would like to find more information, their website is: http://www.zimsculpt.com.

Hugs,
Christina

wm 1

wm 2

wm 3

wm 4

wm 5

wm 6

wm 7

wm 8

wm 9

wm 10

wm 11

wm 12

wm 13

wm 14

wm 15

wm 16

wm 17

wm 19

wm 20

wm 21

wm 22

wm 23

wm 24

NYC

We recently drove to NYC for a family vacation. I love the culture and history that is enveloped into the city! We did a lot of fun things with the kids, but one of the favorites was being able to see The Statue of Liberty up close. We only climbed the stairs to the pedestal but what a magnificent view we held once we stepped out! Afterwards, we took the ferry to Ellis Island and found our ancestor’s names on the wall. I think it’s important for our kids to know the history of their ancestors….what their lives were like at the time their families chose to send them to America.

Hugs for a Happy Sunday!
Christina

NYC 11 wm

Statue of Liberty 1 wm