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There are so many clichés in photography… so many ideas overused and done again and again.

Sometimes I don't care… like this image above.

We've all seen the hands in silhouette, formed into a heart many times. But this is my image, of my moment. This is my memory of a good friend standing on a Welsh hill at sunset, it's portrays how we were in the moment, playing, having fun and loving it all.

To cliché or not cliché… what do you say?


right behind

That's my boy. Racing down a steep hill toward the edge of an even steeper hill, giggling all the way.

I want to give him his space to explore, but it's also my job to keep him safe and (mostly) injury-free. So there I am, following behind but always looking ahead for danger. I'm sure it's a struggle that most parents face. How do we encourage exploration while setting some boundaries? But all we can do is try our best to find the right balance for our individual children.

On this particular day, I was hoping to get a few family photos. You know, the kind where we all stand still and smile at the camera? And while we did manage to get a couple of posed shots, it's this image that makes me smile. I'm so glad my husband snapped this photo when he did because it perfectly symbolizes this stage of our lives. We are watching a baby become a boy and explore his independence, we are just along for the ride.



"Life is one big road with lost of signs." - Bob Marley

Today's one word prompt is sign. For fun I did a little experiment and went to my photo stream on Flickr and did a search for "sign".  I was actually surprised by how many signs I have photographed through the last few years. Many of them really speak of where I live.  I might not have to give you an exact location at all, but  by looking at my photos I bet you could easily put a place to the signs.  I like that, how the signs around me speak of "home" and place.  My place in this big world. My signs mostly wooden & weathered by time and the sea. 

What "signs" do you see?

Share a sign with us all today.

Don't forget our new one word hashtag #ssdecember. 



in gratitude

November was a dark month. Here in New England, it feels like the slippery slope leading down down down into the darkness of short days and long nights. November is the hardest for me. Others might argue that February is hardest here in the north country but I would disagree (having only had one under my belt, ahem!) February for us is a busy time filled with birthdays and a visual expression of pulling oneself up into light with each day growing longer by the minute and the ever elusive Springtime always just around the corner. Yes, February is easier for me to swallow with birthday cakes and ice cream.

November was another story.
And thus, a gratitude project was born.
last year it was what carried me through.
It's a great practice in daily mindfulness.

This past month I found myself thankful for:

  • reclusive artists and the partnership that flows between.
  • radical acts of love
  • laughing children, hide and seek, and cornfield picnics.
  • photography and the inspiration that comes with the first snow of the season.
  • the nights my mom visits me in my dreams, even though it's absolutely heartbreaking.
  • this colorful world.
  • this messy life and the lessons we learn together.
  • sunday drives that lead us to thrifted bliss.
  • this art of juggling, crazy as it makes me.
  • for technology that allows these conversations that float through this very sky connecting maine to london and canada. thankful for these connections, these women, this laughter.
  • strangely, grateful for the broken washing machine... it gave me this day in town with my loves.
  • for sunshine and friendship
  • this boy who made me a momma.
  • this day. this moment. this life.
  • the little things like hanging curtains in our new bedroom yurt.
  • this epic day of gatherings and blended families, thanksgiving feasts. this is the reminder that our past does not define us, it simply brought us to where we are now... which is as amazing. 
  • my love, my partner, and an impromptu date night in portland.
  • this day to finish my work week, this laughter to finish the month, and true smiles that come with real life.

So, while I was silent in blogland I was shooting images every day with my iphone because that little device often acts as a lifeline and keeps me present in the moment of everyday photography. Have you done a gratitude project? If so we'd love to see it! Do you prefer your smartphone or your dslr for everyday shooting?

What have you been grateful for? Please leave your words (and images!) in the comments below.


Upping Our Game


On a recent trip to the beach, I purposely left my DSLR behind. I do it more and more these days as I fall back on knowing that I’ve always got my iPhone. In this instance I was doing a photo shoot, but instead of doing the shooting, I was being shot. I figured taking the camera wasn’t necessary since it wasn’t really the plan for me to shoot.

Did I mention it was right after a storm and it was golden hour?

We get to the beach and it’s gorgeous. Not just any gorgeous. The gorgeous that doesn’t come along every day. And there I was, without my camera. But, I chose not to dwell on that little detail. Instead I was heightened to the experience. To the way the sky was perfectly covered with clouds, like paint on a canvas; each stroke, highlight and shadow placed by the artist’s brush. To the reflection of light and color on the water’s surface. To the cool, moist air blowing in my hair and across my skin. I didn’t want to forget everything I was seeing and feeling. I was photographing it in my mind.

And then I reached for my iPhone. How could I ever do this landscape justice with a mobile phone? Although I love what my iPhone does, I do know that there are limitations. For some reason I doubted that anything I captured in those few minutes could ever rival that of my DSLR or better yet, of my own eyes. But, I was determined to try my best. To capture the light and texture and water and sand. To paint the scene with my camera, as simple and small as it seemed, I took the time, and made the effort to up my game.

I am in love with the dozen or so images I captured that evening. Each one represents a shot I had etched in my mind. Because I could only rely on what I had with me, I used it to the best of its ability. It was intentional and I pushed myself not only to see things more clearly but to document them like that as well.

Are there times when you feel you’ve had to up your game? What was that like for you?

And speaking of upping your game; today we are giving away a spot in my soon-coming class The Art of Composition. All you need to do is leave a comment here on this post before Thursday at midnight EST for your chance to win a complementary registration to the Standard Version of the class, which begins on Jan 3rd. YAY! Winner will be announced on Friday. Good luck!

CONGRATS TO ALISON! SHE WON! Thanks everyone for your comments.

Todays prompt: sky

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