Wednesday, July 01, 2015

July 1, PhotoTherapy

Where did June go? Zoooooom! Actually, I know where it went,
 I spent days looking in vain for photos of
my girls when they were young. Somehow nearly all of them disappeared during
the 2006 move. How could that happen?? I will never got over the loss of
those memories. The only thing that has helped me through the despair is that
 in my mother's thing were some photos, small bonus size ones, and I found an
envelope of 110 Instamatic negatives that I've been scanning. But every time I scan one
photo I remember another lost one and the tears flow. My heart has always gone out
to those who have lost households in disasters but the difference is that they know what happened.
The loss of belongings to house fires or natural disasters can't be easy, but I will never know
where the photos ended up. In the midst of the search realization hit. 
I haven't seen any of the photos since the move so I knew that I had to give
 up the search and let go. 

My girls are in the 40's which is a huge shock to me! I feel like I was just in my 40's! 
Anyway, neither of them needs much so I thought I'd create books for their Birthdays this year Moments from birth to current. Thus the search for the photos.
 I've made books from Blub before but wonder
if there is another source that might be better. 

During the rough times I often get lost for weeks
reading book after book. The other thing that helps is
working with photos. So, I'm coining the term PhotoTherapy. 

A sunburned rose, layered/blended with 
textured layers that I created.

Plumeria with a textured layer.

Memories of Rome, 2009, layered with
an image of tree photo taken in Pebble Beach, CA

Palo Verde Desert tree with a texture layer.

Corey at 18 months after proudly painting her face.
Added a texture layer to further distress
 the image. 

Happily, the above photo was in a box
of miscellaneous photos. It's the 
only one I have of a joyous day.
After 14 days in the hospital with 
lung issues, Corey joined her
3 year old sister Stacy.
Textured later added.

At 11 months Corey stood up and walked.
Textured layer added. 

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Vignettes from the garden

Often I dream about leaving the house with the camera and driving to
new places, but then reality sets in and I once again find that it's 
better if I stay home; safer that way.
I'm a believer that photos are everywhere if we look at our 
surroundings with "new eyes." Some times it takes looking through
the viewfinder to see the ordinary in a new way. 

A pot of Agave is interesting enough
but what if the image is layered with a photo of barrel cactus?

Two daily visitors in the yard are more interesting with
multiple textured layers subtly done.

A blending of various cactus and textures.

Every spring a few Orioles arrive. They're particularly fond
of the hummingbird feeder and let me know when it's 
empty. I've probably photographed around a 100 shots of them
and finally got a different one today. Eureka! Getting a side
view this good has taken years. 
Extracted from the boring background of
the hummer feeder and layered with a succulent image followed
by texture layers and my Saturday has gone from
bleak to one full of Joy!

Monday, May 11, 2015

Digital Exressions

Simple collage.
Photos from earlier this month of 
The Grand Finale of the
 Sea Urchin Cactus.

Moon over the Salton Sea.
The base photo is of the Salton Sea.
The train image was taken at the Salton Sea.
The weeds in the foreground are an image from
the Back Bay in Costa Mesa. The moon is from
last August.

The Salton Sea is rapidly disappearing and if
it's not saved the air here
in the Palm Springs area
will become toxic
resulting in 
numerous health issues. 

The base photo is a vintage portrait of a man in uniform. His hands are in his
lap and ended up blended with both the parrot and cockatiels claws.
Two texture layers were added along with text. 

The base photo is a double image of the Palatine in Rome; a magical
trip six years ago. 
Other layers are a Sea Urchin Cactus and a dove.

I dream of being in Rome again; birds
represent freedom to me, if only I could
take fight and appear in Italy!

The base photo is a Salton Sea building. 
Layers of textures. I create all of the texture layers I use. 

Note: I just recently became aware that some of my images have
been pinned on Pinterest, being that my work is original it's my
hope that my copyright is honored. Thank you.

Train near the Salton Sea. 
Building below the track is a miniature train building.
Two layers of textures.

There is a mysterious quality around
the Salton Sea. This image
evokes not only mystery but a
desolate feeling that
hits me every time I visit
 the Salton Sea. 

A manipulated vintage photo of a woman layered
with an image of a Gazania flower against
Barrel Cactus. 

The story goes that an aunt was a Ziegfeld Follies
Dancer who was known for her
dramatic approach to life.
This image is in honor of her.

Monday, May 04, 2015

Sea Urchin Grand Finale!

This morning I was greeted with the Grand Finale of the Sea Urchin flowers, something akin to the finale of a fireworks show. Spectacular! Seven flowers opening at the same time rarely happens, 
usually there are only 1-3 at a time. (the 7th one hidden by an agave.)

Against the Agave.

Love the abstract below.

Below: Against Barrel cactus and Gazania on the right.

The image above is one of two times this year that one
 plant had two flowers on it.

This flower is in a pot, thus the different background.

And one last version. Until next year  . . .

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Awesome April - Sea Urchin Month

Every April I'm greeted most mornings with a fragile Sea Urchin Cactus 
bloom, lasting only for the day of its birth. The challenge every year
is to  photographically create new versions of this awesome event. 
The first bloom of this year was photographed against a pot on the patio that 
only came to life with a watercolor app.
The second image is a straight iPhone shot.


 Canon PowerShot, PSE 13 manipulated
blended image.

Late afternoon garden shot, 
Canon PowerShot through window.

Canon PowerShot.

iPhone with PowerShot image of fireworks.

iPhone, DistressedFX app

Sunday, January 25, 2015

January has flown by . . .

 Being January has flown by I'm dedicating this post to birds. I can't remember a
time when I didn't love them. I'm not sure what it is about them that speaks to me
and maybe I don't need to know . . . They don't even need to be exotic for me to
take notice of them. I can't imagine a garden without them and feel
blessed to have so many visit the feeders and fountain.
Yesterday the dove in the above photo posed for me.

 I've been gifted with 4 nests, all of which are constructed in 
unique ways. I'm pretty sure all of the nests were made by

The one  above is the most delicate and intricate one. One lone dove feather
was caught in it. A neighbor brought it to me after
her dog had sniffed it out on the front lawn.

The top one was created in a grape vine and the one below was in
a vine against the wall.  

Maybe my love of birds started when I was around 12 and had 3 pigeon coops
in the backyard. My father built a small one thinking that I'd have a few birds
and then built a second one and finally built a walk-in one. All of the coops
were full and my brother swears that at one time there were 60 pigeons. I only
remember about 20 which was more than enough. Only 2 were of the grey and
black variety, 4 white ones and the rest were fan-tailed, feather footed, or owl pigeons.
In the afternoons after school I would spend some time in the yard with them, letting
them out of the cages while I cleaned up their messes. Mom would always flee to the
house and it wasn't until years later that she told me how frightened she was of them. 
When we moved from Costa Mesa to Huntington Beach homes needed to be found for
the flock. While at the time is was legal in Costa Mesa to have coops it wasn't in HB. 
      To ease the pain of leaving my friends behind I was give a parakeet who talked some
and sat on my shoulder when I did homework. Following that little blue guy were a few
cockatiels and a parrot all of which I eventually found homes for.
 I much prefer outdoor birds. 

 At the Living Desert Zoo there is currently an exhibit of The
Birds of Australia. Thinking that the birds would be exotic
in nature we went to see them last Friday. While they're calling the
above Parakeets Budgies I don't think of them as exotic. 
Definitely cute though.

Checking us out.

A line-up of cockatiels. I had grey ones so the yellow ones were
"exotic." There were a couple of parrots too. The best part about the
exhibit is that it's interactive. Stacy loved having the birds land on her
while she held sticks of food for them. One 
attempted to climb into my purse, thus
the search for hitch-hikers when 
departing the aviary. We'll visit them again before they
depart in April. 

At the Discovery Center, this fella, a Kestrel, was getting quite a bit of 
attention. Being able to get this close to him was the highlight of the day!

A second highlight was seeing the two Giant Kudos off in the distance 
in route to visit the giraffes. Giant Kudos are native to south Africa.

Some of the Living Desert grounds.

Be as a bird perched on a frail branch that she
feels bending beneath her,
still she sings all the same, 
knowing she has wings.
Victor Hugo

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Happy New Year

My Wish for everyone is that 
the struggles that were experienced
in 2014 will be the fertilizer to
fuel Wonderfulicious dreams in 2015.

Woke up to a rare sight, snow! The mountains behind
the house aren't high enough to normally be
dusted with snow. Not much rain
hit the desert floor during the storm
last night and definitely no

A bit windy.