52 Weeks Of Photo Challenges

A theme based photo blog


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52. Yellow

Well it doesn’t get more yellow than this!  I have learned all about the minions thanks to my grandson Greyson. If it has a minion on it he wants it.

I was on a Walmart run to buy mailing labels and took a side trip down the toy isle. Because that is what I do now because of this ridiculous blog… I think I may have let out an audible giggle when I saw this 8 pack of tiny little minions. Let me introduce you to Carl, Kevin, Phil, Jerry, Stuart, Tom, Dave and Tim.

So here you go, more tiny toys that the grandkids think will belong to them in August. HA!

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28 Comments

6. Celebration

Tiny was part of the best kind of celebration last night. She was able to document the birth of a baby with her camera. Each delivery is always unique and this one was no exception. When the baby was born and the new dad saw his beautiful new baby he was overcome with emotion and passed out cold. Fortunately the Dr. was able to patch him up quickly so he could get back to his wife’s side.

When Tiny left both mommy and baby were resting comfortably.

page1 celebration

page2 celebration


40 Comments

41. Shades Of Gray

Oh yes I did! This post idea is not mine alone… I won’t begin to take credit/blame for this idea. Recently I volunteered to drive myself and 3 other photo blog friends on a photo outing. You can see where the conversation went while discussing upcoming blog themes…

Disclaimer- Tiny was not hurt or abused in any way during the making of this post.

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57 Comments

35. On The River

Rain in Florida is not unusual. What does feel unusual for me is rain lasting for days upon days. The rains we have been getting in the last couple weeks feel more like the rainy seasons we used to experience when we lived in Panama. The morning news has been full of flood advisories and warnings not to drive through flooded streets.
I decided to take another tiny Playmobil man out to the street/river in front of my house for a little creative photo shoot. The gutter must seem like a river when you are 2 1/2 inches tall!
All my clothes are now in the dryer….
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20 Comments

A-1 Blue

I had the pleasure recently to do a senior photo shoot for a girl named Abi. She had never had her portrait taken before and was a little nervous at first. Abi is hands down one of the sweetest girls I have ever met. Hopefully by the time we were finished she knew just how photogenic she was as well.  I think her eyes are a beautiful shade of blue and makes a perfect photo for the ‘Blue’ theme.

Abi


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35. Rocky Waterscapes

I recently took a trip with my husband back to some of his old stomping grounds in the Northeast. We knew some of our activities would include visiting a few light houses. What we didn’t plan for was any type of cold weather! While I took this particular photo of the Portland Head Light, I had the hat on my jacket tied tight trying to block the blowing wind from my face. I wasn’t wearing gloves, because who knew I’d need them in June!! My fingers still hurt on my right hand hours later! When I look at this photo I can still feel the wind and cold…

Portland Head Light


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9. Drops Of Water

A few months ago I had the pleasure of going on a trip with a group of photographers to Kowiachobee Animal Preserve near Naples, Florida. They had been working on a play area for two, 9 month old white bengal tigers. We had the pleasure of being some of the first to watch them enjoy an enormous pond build especially for them. It was so much fun watching them splash in the water with each other. They spent hours sneaking up on each other and then pouncing on one another in the water. The air was filled with roars of excitement. I ended up spending the majority of my visit sitting on the ground just watching them have fun.

Eye Of The Tiger

 


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A-4 Night Shot

On a recent visit to Boston my husband and I spent the better part of a day trying to track down a particular spot to take a night shot photograph of the Boston skyline. I had done a search on 500px.com before we left to see what kind of shots others had taken in the places we would be visiting.

I saved a couple of the photos to my phone and as we explored the city I asked various people, waitress’ bartenders and a security guard if they knew the place. As dusk approached we finally spotted ‘Fan Pier’ from a horse drawn carriage ride we were on. We found our way back before the sun set and spent about an hour or so just sitting and watching the sun go down and the city lights coming on.

I love the memory attached to the photo because of how hard my husband and I worked together to find the location…

Boston Skyline

 


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41. Single Color On Black and White

This theme has been haunting me since the beginning! I have thought about so many different ways of doing this in my little studio room but none of them have felt right. Then today while going through photos that I took while adventuring around Idaho this one jumped out begging me to be used. I’m a weirdo about snapping photos of lone trees on mountain ridge lines. For some reason they make me think of old western movies when all the indians would appear on top of ridges while wagon trains passed through the valley below.  I told you I am weird…. or maybe I just have a very active imagination.

I think I’ll title this photo, “Indian On The Ridge,” just because I can…

Indian On The Ridge

Indian On The Ridge


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39. Shot Through Glass

My grandson, Greyson, was with us on Christmas morning this year. It was great fun to be able to watch him open a few presents. Like a lot of 2 year olds he seemed more interested in normal everyday things than he did in his presents. This year his favorite thing to play with was the patio door. The perfect gift for him would have been a tiny, just his size patio door to take home to open and close all year long. Of course if I HAD found him a tiny door he would have probably been more interested in the box!

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19. Holiday Spirit

The holiday spirit has been a little hard for me to find this year… yesterday I may have finally found it!

I went to visit my daughter and her family to take their annual Christmas card photos. It was a beautiful day at an uncrowded beach in Florida. It didn’t take us long to figure out that our list of Pinterest ideas wouldn’t be necessary. Greyson, my almost two year old grandson, had his own ideas. We decided to just make it a lifestyle shoot… we followed around the little Mr. and tried to do whatever necessary to just get him to make eye contact with the camera. Both a smile and eye contact were rare this year! I don’t want to ruin the photo surprises to those on my daughters card list who might see this post. But, I am going to include my favorite from the day. Sorry Lis… 🙂

And thanks for getting me into the spirit. I watched the movie ‘Elf’ twice while I edited photos this morning. I have all my silly movie lines stuck in my head now… “I just like to smile, smiling is my favorite!” or “This place reminds me of Santa’s workshop, except it smells like mushrooms and everyone looks like they want to hurt me…” HAHA

Alissa Spice

 


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45. Statues

While vacationing this summer I photographed a lot of statues with this theme in mind. It was the last one I took in Venice that is going to make the cut and be included here. It’s a statue dedicated to Bartolomeo Colleoni by the Florentine artist Anrea Verrocchio.

Colleoni, appointed lifelong captain-general for his military service to the republic, led Venetian forces successfully in campaigns against neighboring city-states, beginning in the 1430s and ending four decades later.

Colleoni died in 1475, leaving his property to the republic of Venice with the condition that a monument of him be erected in St. Mark’s Square.  Our guide gave us several reasons why the Venetians wouldn’t allow that… The Venetian Senate found a loophole and were able to come to a compromise. The Republic got the money and Bartolomeo could have his wish. They erected the statue in another square,  the Campo Santi Giovanni of Paolo. There technically IS a statue of St. Mark over looking this square. But not the one Colleoni had in mind…

Bartolomeo Colleoni Monument

Scuola Grande di San Marco

 


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11. Favorite Room

I knew right away what I wanted to do for this theme. Hands down my favorite room is the room I use to take photos. It’s my happy place. I have a large window that I use as a natural light source. I love to experiment with different types of reflectors both made by me and purchased at the fancy camera stores. My favorite is my 4×8 piece of white styrofoam. I bought 4 plastic shelf brackets at Home Depot and attached them to the bottom. It allows me to bounce light when I am working alone in my favorite room. I can easily drape the styrofoam with what ever my imagination can think up to use as a back ground. Sometimes that is something as simple as a piece of black velvet. I love using the styrofoam boards as painted backdrops as well when I am taking portraits. I can easily change a whole corner of my room into a bright cheery color or a lovely neutral gray.

I love to take creative portraits. I have recruited friends to dress up in lace, silk and shine so I can experiment and grow as a photographer. I have made my own tulle skirts to go with  pieces I have found while searching through vintage shops. My shelves hold many treasures that I are available for when ever my imagination runs wild! Sparkly jewels, hats, beautiful wraps, funny glasses, pillows, baskets, stools, chairs, ottomans, a wind machine, a bird in a nest, baby headbands, a tutu, sea shells, mirrors, frames, bean bags, flash lights, wigs, a genie lamp, a tiara, christmas lights, glow sticks and of course a lot of false eyelashes….  because why would anyone want to be photographed not wearing false eyelashes?  Well other than my assistant Lola. She isn’t into makeup but she does know to sit at a 45 degree angle with her chin over her shoulder if she wants to be my practice model.

favorite room

favorite room collection


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43. That Reminds Me

Last night I was fortunate enough to be able to watch a beautiful sunset over the water. The reflection of the setting sun reminded me first of an abstract painting I saw once in a gallery. Then as the sky changed so did the water. It reminded me then of a river of molten lava, then of an artists palette of paints. In the end it mostly reminded me how lucky I am to live in a place that I can watch beautiful sunsets over the ocean.

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sunsetwater2

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13. Hearts

While visiting Sedona recently I decided to make a little photo blog game out of looking for hearts.  I managed to find several in just one day!

A coffee shop door

A coffee shop door

A cute little gift shop...

A cute little gift shop…

...that happens to be on the National Register of Historic Places.

…that happens to be on the National Register of Historic Places.

 

Mexican Sacred Hearts

Mexican Sacred Hearts

and a little heart wish hanging in a tree!

and a little heart wish hanging in a tree!

All proof that photo blogging may become addicting. It may cause you to take photos of things that make no sense to anyone other than another photo blogger!


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A3 I Saw It On Vacation

My husband surprised me for my last birthday by taking me for a short mini vacation to Clearwater Beach. At first I hesitated to include a photo taken so close to home under a vacation theme. But then I thought about how many people spend time planning a vacation to a place right in my own back yard.

I was in my mid 30’s before I saw the ocean for the first time…. maybe that is why I love being near the water so much. I don’t think I will ever tire of it’s beauty.

Clearwater Beach


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20. I Wish I Could/I’m Sorry I Did

While visiting Sedona, my friends and I sat our alarm clocks for very early each morning. We wanted to be out and about before the sun rose. On the advice of another photographer part of our adventures included a pull over half way up the airport road. The first morning we only climbed half way to the top. But on the second day we climbed all the way to the top to enjoy the sunrise. My friend Julie snapped the first photo of me setting up a shot. I have to include it to set up the second shot. On the decent from the summit I found a little tree growing sideways out of the rocks. So, with a small tilt of the camera we created the perfect shot for my “I Wish I Could/I’m Sorry I Did,” theme….

I Wish I Could

 

I'm Sorry I Did


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6. By Candle Light

I have been wanting to experiment with light painting  since I watched my first Ben Willmore workshop on Creative Live. I have been scouring the racks at Lowes, Home Depot, The Dollar Tree, Staples etc for quite awhile. I’ve collected a lot of CANDLE power and finally started to play around with many of his technics. I have little lights that you can have attached to your keychain that are only a few candles bright all the way up to one I am hoping can light a car with a few swipes out doors.  I have a long chain with a jump rope handle on the end that I’ve made small orbs with indoors. I’m still waiting on just the right no mosquito night to try it out doors!

Below is my best indoor experiment to date. When I showed the picture to my husband I told him with a lot of excitement that I sat up this shot and then photographed it in a pitch black room. I told him the only light was a flash light I used to “paint” the photograph. After seeing the look on his face I reminded myself that I really need to stop telling him these things. The only painting he wants to hear about is when I tell him I’ve repainted the bathroom! HA

Light Painting


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Getting ready for next years 52 week photo challenge!

The last photo post for this year will be the end of July! We will begin again the first week of August. The themes felt a bit tougher this year we’ve tried to make next years list a little easier. Some of you may not want to continue for another year and that is ok. This is a big commitment! Personally I love that I get the themes stuck in my head and am always looking at the world trying to frame up a photo!

If you are currently blogging this is time to count up how many themes you have left! This week you should have 44 for the current year. You don’t need to panic if you are behind, there is still plenty of time. How many photos have you taken thinking you just might find one better? Well it’s time to be happy with that one, a better one isn’t coming along! Also, don’t forget we have 6 more themes listed than you actually need to use. If you forgot about that you can already breathe a little easier!

If any of you are following our photos and would like to get involved beginning the first week of August just leave me a message. Those of you who are currently posting along and would like to continue please let Mary Nell or I know so we can keep you in the loop. We usually send out the themes the second week of July. That gives everyone a little time to add a tab with the new themes to your blog page and to think about the new themes before we begin.

Some of you who are currently posting might have other photographer friends who might like to get involved. This is the time to let them know what we do!

Get snapping! 🙂


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A1 Black and White

I know, I know I am about to post yet another photo of my dog. This week I learned about the smudge tool in photoshop. I’m showing what a rookie I am in photoshop by admitting that I didn’t know about this tool already. I found a really cool tutorial on Facebook that taught how to do a painterly effect without needing to buy a software package or some fast app. I’d rather learn how and why things work and not just take the short cuts all the time. At times it can be very frustrating but in the end I feel better about it.

If anyone is interested in learning more about this check out Gavin Phillips on Facebook. He does some free brush downloads and has short videos demonstrating his technics. I’ve had a lot of fun learning some new things from him this week!

Lola in black and white


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5. Bouncer

I took a little trip downtown Sarasota this morning to visit the weekly farmers market. I was in search of photos to fulfill some of my photo blog themes. I am finding some of those remaining quite difficult. That includes the theme “Bouncer.” I thought of bouncing babies, kids on a trampoline, a group of people playing basketball etc. None of those felt original to me even if I were to actually find someone doing that!  Today I finally had something jump out at me. I noticed the little wooden figurines bouncing up and down before I even read the sign! They are handmade in Germany and the Czech Republic and come in over 150 styles. I especially loved the little pink princess.

Canon EOS 5D Mark II  EF 50mm f/1.8 1/400 sec; f/6.3; ISO 100

Canon EOS 5D Mark II EF 50mm f/1.8
1/400 sec; f/6.3; ISO 100

Canon EOS 5D Mark II EF 50mm f/1.8 1/800 sec; f/6.3; ISO 100

Canon EOS 5D Mark II
EF 50mm f/1.8
1/800 sec; f/6.3; ISO 100


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49. Ugly

I’m going to use my Sea Hagg photo for my “Ugly” shot. I suppose to a small child she might seem ugly, but looking through my lens baby I thought she was pretty!

Canon EOS 5D Mark II Lens Baby Double Glass 50mm aperture disc 1/125 sec; ISO 400

Canon EOS 5D Mark II
Lens Baby Double Glass 50mm aperture disc
1/125 sec; ISO 400


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26. Light and Airy

Light and Airy

Little Miss Mindy
had a great plan
to take a photo she loved.
Along came a spider
who wove a web right beside her
that fit her theme like a glove.

On a recent frosty morning I admired the work of a spider in my back yard. I thought it fit the theme, “Light and Airy” perfectly.

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48. There’s nothing better than…

…learning new things in photo shop!

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I know it isn’t perfect.  But it sure is fun figuring it all out!


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4. Architecture

I knew while I was visiting New York City that I would want to use the theme “Architecture.” But I didn’t think I would be so overwhelmed with so many choices!
I chose the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Wow. It is just beautiful even in a snow storm. I chose to use a couple snowy day photos to show you something I did not know when I was there snapping photos…
The Met
The second photo of the front  facade shows a little unknown fact. It is still unfinished. It was the third addition to the original building. Richard Morris Hunt died before construction began on the famous 5th Avenue façade that visitors have known as the Met’s main entrance since 1902, but his son carried out the design almost to his specifications. Thirty-one pieces of sculpture were designed for it, but a lack of funds left piles of uncarved stone atop the columns which has become an “accepted part of the façade.”
In Hunt’s original design, the four columns were to be topped by sculpture groups representing  ‘four great periods of art’: Egyptian, Greek, Renaissance and Modern. Between each pair of columns sat a niche where Hunt intended to set a copy of one great work from each historical era.”

Piles of uncarved stone atop the columns

Piles of uncarved stone atop the columns

In 2011 The Museum announced that 5.68 million people visited the Met during that fiscal year. It was the highest record in 40 years. I wonder how many people looked up long enough to see that something was still left to finish? Or perhaps they were like me and just overwhelmed by it’s beauty!


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29. Mirror Image

Recently while visiting New York City with my friend Mary Nell I noticed her reflection in this store window. I thought it would work perfectly for my mirror image theme. It’s a good thing there is only 1 of her, I couldn’t keep up with 2!

IMG_7621 mirrorimage


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21. In The Clouds

I’m so glad I haven’t used this theme yet! This photo makes me smile…. I did a photo shoot this morning and made a promise to this little guy. I told him if he smiled for all of his shots I’d do something special just with him.  I love it when a plan comes together!

IMG_1797 SuperSam2forblog


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42. Standing Out From The Crowd.

hmmmm. I think a better title for this might be “Crossing Guards Gone Wild!”  But that isn’t a choice so I will stick to”Standing Out From The Crowd.” Please someone promise me that if I ever try to leave the house dressed head to toe in neon orange you will stop me.

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7. Catch Me If You Can

My grandson Greyson is visiting for a couple days. He is much more mobile since the last time he was here. Our dogs Louie and Lola used to want to see him all the time and would get very concerned if they heard him make a fuss. That’s not true anymore. They spend most of their time looking over their shoulder now to see where the little squirmy one is! And when he sees them it can quickly turn into a game of “Catch me if you can!”

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32. Out Of Place

Recently while visiting Seattle I chuckled to myself when I saw this man playing the piano on a street corner near Pike Place. There were several street performers in the area but he did seem out of place to me. Most street performers don’t bring such a large piece of equipment with them do they? It made me wonder how far he had to push or pull his piano?!  And, had he not been careful this theme could have very easily became “31.Out of Control” or “33. Over the Hill!”

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