"No matter where I serve my guests, it seems they like my kitchen best" -something I saw on my mom's kitchen wall as a kid, author unknown

Posts tagged ‘Growing my inner artist’

I’m In the Desert…

So, when I say that I’m taking a small hiatus? Don’t believe me, friends – just don’t. Life has been a whirlwind this past year! Remember all that talk about moving to Colorado? Well, we did it! I’m near my friends and we are now surrounded by beautiful, mountainy goodness – well at least for Michael and Kahlynne. Phoebs is back in PA with her dad and I am in Phoenix for school. I’m kind of sad to be so far from my friends (especially my bff) – again… but it’s for a good cause, I keep telling myself. Crazy changes, huh? The desert is being pretty good to me so far, though I have found that I have an interesting fear of scorpions. It seems that I suddenly realized that scorpions live in the desert and, OMG, I am now in the desert – so, I’m afraid they are going to attack my feet. ALL OF THEM!

How creepy - with babies even!

Okay, so really I need to thank Apple. Apple, I read your blog today and began to think to myself, “Self? Where the hell are you and why did you stop blogging?” I couldn’t find a good and reasonable answer to my question, so I decided to immediately jump back in. Now that all three of you are excited to see that I plan to continue writing, let me tell you a little bit about what I’m doing in school. I’m really excited.

Firstly, I’m in school for something I LOVE. Graphics. Manipulating them, taking many of them and making new designs, altering them etc. All to convey a message. Okay, so that’s the deep down, raw part of what I love to do. My major is Digital Media and I am looking so forward to stretching the boundaries of what I know into the possibilities of what could be with just a touch of creativity.

This semester my classes are dealing with Photoshop, Math (appreciation), a bit of history, web design, and art. I’m excited about all of them – especially my art class. You all may be thinking, oh yes, art… drawing, painting and the like. No. This is bio art. huh?! Yes, that was my reaction also when I heard of the class. Pulling away from traditional art, bio art is at the intersection of biology, art and technology. I’ve only been to one class, but I am looking forward to learning more of this interesting, obscure emerging field.

Not that this ‘defines’ bio art, but Jon McCormack is an artist I was researching a bit about in preparation for a project. He designed this cool program. I don’t know much about it as I’ve only just begun to read about it, but I think it was designed to evolve dna and he creates art pieces around the results. It’s pretty neat and I encourage you to check him out.

I’m really liking my school also. It’s a fairly tiny school and it’s dedicated to technology. It’s fantastic – I’m surrounded by like minded people who love computers, games or at the very least, appreciate those who do. It seems that two of the most popular majors at the school are Game Art & Animation and Game Design but there are lots of other technology based majors available. The first acronym that I encountered (and on my first day of orientation even) was Net Sec… say that fast without it coming out as nutsack… riiiight.

Have I mentioned I’m in the desert? Here’s my apartment:

Evie's Apartment in the Desert

Cute, right? Just kidding. Phoenix is actually a really nice place. There are lots of palm trees – it kind of reminds me of when I was in California with Michael several years ago. Really, who can beat 65-75 degrees in January? I feel kind of guilty… almost like I’m on a really long vacation where I learn stuff. Just watch out for those scorpions.

Well friends, coffee is done brewing and its time for me to be off to school soon. There will be more as it happens. Thanks for coming by today – I know it’s been a really long loooonnnnggg time… like a year! So, thank you for coming back to visit and I look forward to telling many stories about school and more as they happen  🙂

~ECO~

Wednesday Scrap Book

It’s Wednesday and time to dig out the scrapbook! I’ve been trying to decide on what to share today and my eye keeps coming back to this image.

This was a beautiful horse I passed while driving through the country side in Illinois one day. There’s something about his expression that intrigues me… very intelligent eyes, I think.

I dressed this photo up a bit. It’s amazing what you can do with digital tools, I think. I fully enjoyed shooting pictures of the countryside and old buildings while in IL. I found that I really like to shoot rotted out, broken down old barns – I don’t know why. There is just something about them; so much history to learn from them – just to be there and soak it in. You can hope that in the quietness, the spirits that pass by on the wind will osmose their knowledge in to you.

I know I put a smaller version of this in yesterday’s post, but I felt like it needed its own space here in the scrap book. This was sunrise on a small dirt road that ran between two fields. You can just see the hint of frost still on the grass. The trees themselves really interest me. I see a few things, but the one thing that makes me giggle is that they look like they are pulling back in surprise at the one lone tree standing tall.

I shot this pretty thing while at the St. Louis Zoo with my family. Anyone with children (who have watched Sesame Street) will know that Bert LOVES pigeons. Most call them rats with wings, but I see the beauty that Bert sees. Look at the lovely colors around the neck and the striking markings on the wings. The orange of the eye contrasts so nicely – maybe it’s because purple, green and orange are my favorite colors that this bird is so glamorous to me…

That sky. THAT is what I absolutely love about Illinois. The sky goes on forever and ever and ever and ever and ever… you get my point. Having grown up in the beauty of Pennsylvania, surrounded with architecture (old and new), trees, and mountains, the beauty of Pure Sky is something that I immediately fell in love with. (Which, this picture FAR from does the Sky justice)

Thanks for coming out today and sharing my memories, and my attempts at “good photography”. Maybe next week I’ll post some of those broken old barns full of memory and intrigue!

Inspiration and Evolution: my blogging journey

Recently I’ve been inspired.

It’s a funny thing – inspiration – it comes about at the strangest of times and sometimes by the oddest of things. Some people think of this as a muse even. Sandy Ackers has a great blog and brings her muse into a lot of the posts I’ve read recently. MY muse has come to me in the form of fellow bloggers (Sandy being one), or perhaps more appropriately, their blogs.

My bff, Teresa was my first inspiration – back before she was my bff and before we were Altaholics-Anonymous even. Her writing NEVER fails to bring a smile to my face, or even a ‘LoL IRL’. Also, Apple – ever the word of encouragement, she’s always happy to offer up feedback or even play along when I’m writing improv. So a GREAT.BIG.THANKYOU and many more hugs to these two lovely ladies for their inspiration, great reads and continued support in my endeavor to become a better writer.

I love you guys!

 (Note: I do NOT think of you guys as elephants, or heffalumps even… I just could NOT resist the cuteness that IS this picture)

Debra is the better half of my friend Jim and I love her blog. One of her more recent posts has inspired me to be a more social blogger. Reading that post made me realize that other bloggers like to know that they are being read too. Also, who DOESN’T love some comments?! What a great, innovative way to meet new ‘pen pals’ of sorts. Thank you, Debra. (Also, I’m seriously delinquent on making some layouts for you… have you seen the new, highly customizable layout now offered right here in WP? – It’s the one I’m currently using though I’m still working on a custom background).

Touching back on Sandy’s blog for a moment… the passages I’ve read from Strangling My Muse have inspired me to write – not perfect. (Which is something I found to be a huge hinderance to me – even in constructing THIS post). I love the challenges she presents and have tried them out on more than one occasion – sometimes even more than once just to observe the different results. What a great resource for writers in general. Thank you, Sandy!

Another recent, interesting inspiration came from sssourabh. I found him on Freshly Pressed one day when he posted an interesting spin on a ‘Top 10’ list… yeah, you know the kind! Having recently read Debra’s post related to commenting, I felt particularly inclined to leave my mark. A wonderful thing happened – sssourabh, in return, not only responded to my comment but visited MY blog and made comments of his own. Wow, I thought, THIS must be what Debra was talking about! One of sssourabh’s comments was an encouragement to include more photos within my blogs. That comment had me grabbing up my somewhat dusty Nikon case and toting that thing with me EVERYWHERE. (Also, my phone camera has been getting a huge workout) If I was going to include photos in my blog, I wanted them to be my own. (note: I genuinely WANT to learn more about photography, but for some reason have been resistant to reading many books on the subject – I think I’d rather learn by doing with a mentor).

Incidentally, I’ve had an odd inspiration this week for a weirdly interesting photo study (if that’s what they are called)… I’m just not certain how to go about it as it would require a number of volunteers  – with facial hair… Any suggestions are very, very welcome.

While reading his recent post about chocolate, sssourabh encouraged me (likely without knowing) to put more thought into what I write. I read and re-read and re-read again his delicious descriptions – I love (and live very near) Philadelphia and had to applaud him for making me think of ‘my’ city in a whole new light… and the chocolate… his words had me tasting the chocolate and feeling it’s textures without taking one bite! Thank you, sssourabh, for some fantastically descriptive words and for inspiring me to pick up my camera again and shoot the world.

Thank you ALL for helping me to evolve as a writer and artist… your contributions, comments, feedback and just coming to read – whether you know it or not – have been very important and meaningful to me.

Thanks for visiting my kitchen today – and to think this post was supposed to be about the potatoes I made for dinner last night…

All photos are © of their creators. Links to the source are included.

Photo Op!

It’s scrap-book day!! =) Inspired by Debra’s amazing photos, I’ve decided to make today my scrap-book day. I may make every Wednesday scrap book day – I haven’t yet decided. You guys can let me know with your feedback, whether or not it’s a good idea. ❤

Something that I adore doing to destress and find myself among the sometimes chaotic debris of life is to take my camera and shoot things. (Which, I think is a better solution than shooting things with a gun?) I’m striving to take more and more interesting pictures as I grow my inner artist. These are a few of the pictures I took just after Michael got me my first Nikon.

…Except the first one… since Debra asked, and because I don’t have my faire pictures yet, here is a shot taken with a cell phone of me out at Rend Lake while I was in Illinois this past year.

Early morning at Lake Rend - Loving the icy breeze

My go-to place that I found some years ago, is a small, secluded lake near(ish) where I hail from. Here is a shot of where I usually stand to shoot photos over the lake.

I usually set my case and such on the picnic table and carry my tripod as close to the lake as I can get.

These cattails are actually in the photo above as well… they are just mixed in with all of the other brush.

These are some lovely, frozen cattails I shot while experimenting with focus.

Earlier in the year when I was staying in Illinois, I would get up very early to watch the sunrise over Rend Lake and watch the wildlife begin to stir. (Whatever wildlife was willing to come out in the icy weather) One of my favorite mornings was when I was early enough to watch the sun slide lazily up over the horizon as if struggling to wake. Here is just one shot that I took as it was finally almost completely over the horizon.

There's nothing more peaceful than listening to the tiny waves of a lake wash gently over the rocks of the shore while silently watching the sun rise.

Here is a photo I shot in early January while visiting my friends in Colorado Springs. I am very very excited to be moving to a place where I have such great friends and that it is so full of amazing beauty is a major bonus.

Breath taking view of the Rocky Mountains from a small road... somewhere... near(ish) Pike's Peak

Speaking of great friends… Here is Mark feeding his poor poor Jeep my Fiji water…

Please note that the car ran VERY WELL after consuming my Water of OSM

I do have more photos to share, but I think I’ll leave them for another day. Let me know if you enjoyed this feature, and I’ll see about posting 4-5 photos each Wednesday from the digital scrap-book.

Thanks for visiting today!