A Photo a Week Challenge 9/21/18 theme Movement!

Posted these recently for the theme of “action” but it was so delightful watching these two “flower girls” burn off some energy waiting for the dang wedding to start, I thought I’d share them again for movement.

https://chosenperspectives.com/2018/09/02/lens-artist-photo-challenge-9-1-18-action/

I made the mistake of looking further in my files and found this…

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And this…(not a very clear shot but I have waited for YEARS to see one of our wild turkeys fly!!)

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But then I remembered the wonderful train trip we took from Seattle to San Diego…

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Can’t stop now. This challenge had stimulated some serious movement in me!

Next, I found this,,,

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Normally quite docile, this batch of my bugs is very fast moving and cleaning their home has become a two person job. James has to watch them while I refresh their terrarium!

They usually just wait patiently on the screen lid while I clean, except when..and I’m not making this up…I play Pink Floyd. Then they line up like these guys, and no kidding, will sway in time with the music. Little line dancing Extasotoma’s!! (One time I even tried posting a video of this dancing phenomenon on YouTube. Hey, I thought it was cute. But was turned away because I didn’t have the rights to Comfortably Numb. I didn’t know. It was just playing on Pandora while I was cleaning.)

And then there is the movement you don’t want to see!!

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Or lastly (honest,) the movement that absolutely CANNOT happen!!!

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There’s my submission for this topic, Movement!

 

I had fun!

 

https://nadiamerrillphotography.wordpress.com/2018/09/20/a-photo-a-week-challenge-ready-set-action/#respond

A Photo a Week Challenge: The Fruits of your Labor

I’m a Professional Childbirth Attendant. Almost 40 years so hundreds of births now.

But my photos are not about that kind of labor.

This is called Zen Bead Embroidery.

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I started this one with the two tiny copper giraffes

You start with a color theme, or maybe a single button or charm or bead.

Next, collect and collect and collect some more, beads, buttons, rocks, shells, charms, tiny trinkets of any kind, until you have a gathered a bowl or box or pile full of the colors you want to use.

Then, settling as much as you can into a Zen mood, you simply start sewing things onto whatever size canvas/cloth you have chosen. No plan necessary. This is a moment to moment experience. No rhyme or reason. The only patterns will be those that occur to you or that simply emerge as you labor. There is no right, no wrong, and there are no mistakes.

You will spend however many minutes or hours you wish in each stitching session…until you know you are done.

Don’t worry if you cannot muster that Zen feeling. The stitching will assist you.

Or, if you have ever sat through someone’s labor and childbirth, you will already know how.

Frame, if you wish.

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I wanted to be able to call this one Ocean so I just gathered blues and greens and whites for foam

If you figure out that you actually like doing this, you can even choose an image, and let yourself fill it in, Zen Bead Embroidery style.

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And then, you can frame it, or keep it, or give it to your son, your original, 10 pound “labor of love” and tell him it is a “once in his life time” gift!!!

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https://nadiamerrillphotography.wordpress.com/

A Photo a Week Challenge: “Fruits of your labor “

Defending Blue: The Altered Book

Recently I responded to a photography challenge from

Lens-Artists-a photo a week-Blue .

Of course, the BLUE is what caught my eye but the whole thing inspired me to write up the short version of a wonderful art experience I had a few years back.

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My long-time friend invited me to join a yearlong project, along with seven artists. (Please notice I did not say seven other artists, as I am maybe an interesting craft person, at best. But I was honored to be in the company of these true artists!!)

The project was rotating Altered Books.

An altered book is a form of mixed media artwork that changes a book from its original form into a different form, altering its appearance and/or meaning. Wikipedia

This was our assignment. Choose a color theme. And then find a book to “alter”…. meaning just that…a book to change in any way you want.

We informed each other of our chosen colors (blue, red, green, orange, pink, brown, purple, yellow) and set off on our 12 month journey with each other.

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Our procedure was to start our own book, work on it for a month or so, and then mail or take it to the next person on the list. Then they would work on our book, in our color, and we would work on the book we received, using that color. The process is brilliant because you are thinking about all your co-artists throughout the year, watching for. and gathering, ideas and supplies for each of the others’ color themed books. (It was cool that our particular group also knew each other so the ideas we had for each book could have personal meaning, as well as working in that person’s color.)

After a month or so, working with the new color, we would mail or take that book to the next person in our rotation, and so on until we had each worked on every other book.

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The thing I loved most was as each new book arrived, it was like opening a birthday gift. Discovering the current month’s color and seeing what the last person had done with it was so exciting. And of course, as we neared the end, we got to see the project almost completed, with  many different interpretations of that color and of each person’s style of “altering”.

Sometimes the words on particular pages were used as a focus for the altering.

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Other times, it was the actual structure of the book (pages glued together and cut out in shapes).

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And there were even some very clever “pop-outs” so when you turned a page, something surprising would happen.

Since BEADS and BUTTONS are my primary craft addiction, I used a lot of those. But because we were emailing like crazy, sharing tips and checking in, we were learning new techniques from each other along the way (photo transferring, different washes, newly discovered glues, cool sticker sources, Exacto knife methods, etc.).

With each book we signed, left a book mark, or in some way identified our contribution.

 

We didn’t return the last book we worked on to its owner. Instead, we brought it to a gathering on a previously planned weekend. We met at a cabin on Hood Canal, so we could open our own books in front of each other. Every book got hours of attention, each page turned, a new gift! We got to talk about what we had done and why, how we had altered, what each color meant to us, etc.

 

And of course, this was a celebration, so there was food and wine and music too!!!

All in all, it was a memorable experience, one I would love to do again in my life. What a fun way it would be to get to know other Bloggers!

I just had another great idea! What if we did a rotating altered photo album. I know, I know, it would be easier online but what if we each found an actual photo album or scrap book, each picked a theme, (trees, babies, sunsets, politics, whatever!!) and then rotated our albums, sharing our own photography in that theme.

Think of the great coffee table book we could each end up with!

Wow.

SongLyricsSunday–June 3, 2018 theme Smile

Well, I first thought of the song Sara Smile by Hall and Oats, which is a great song musically, hard to sing, shows off their talent, but it just wasn’t interesting enough for this challenge.

Then I remembered this crazy video from a while back. The creativity around this video and despite his reputation, the artist himself, really makes me smile.

So enjoy Gnarls Barkley-Smiley Faces

Smiley Faces
But what did you do
What did you say
Oh did you walk or did you run away
Where are you know
Where have you been
Did you go alone or did you find a friend
I need to know this
‘Coz I noticed I’m just smiling
How can the sun
Have any fun
Feeling free
And I can tell you know how hard this life can be
But you keep on smiling for me
So what went right
What went wrong
Was it a story or was it a song
Was it over night
Or did it take you long
Was knowing your weakness what made you strong
For all the above
Oh how I love to see you smiling
An oh yeah
Take a little pain just in case
You need something want to embrace
To help you put on a smiley face
Face
Smiley face
Don’t you go off into the new day without getting down
Here’s a summary of something you get sad about
Say for instance my girlfriend she, bugs me all the time
But the irony of it all is that she loves me all the time
Oh see
I believe
Whenever I see you smiling
‘Coz excuse me
But it’s easily one of the hardest things to do
Your worries and fears become your friends
And they end up smiling at you
Put on a smiley face
Songwriters: Brian Joseph Burton / Thomas Callaway / Thomas Decarlo Callaway
Smiley Faces lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc, BMG Rights Management US, LLC

ChosenPerspectives on Twisted for WPC 5/23/18

Twisted

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My life is full of Art, but it is also full of artists who define “art” very differently from me.

My best friend is an expert, having studied and collected art for most of his life. He is also a very talented artist in his own right. We’ve had an ongoing debate for more than 40 years about what actually qualifies as art and who gets to define it. I know we are not alone in this disagreement.

I found the following online at:

https://www.performingarts.vt.edu/blog/view/defining-art-in-one-sentence-or-less

“The Merriam-Webster online dictionary defines art as “something that is created with imagination and skill and that is beautiful or that expresses important ideas or feelings.” My own definition of art is the sharing of one’s inner thoughts, feelings, emotions, visions, and struggles through multiple mediums.” 

Wondering what all this has to do with “twisted”?

I think his choice of art is twisted…and I’m sure he thinks mine is invalidly defined as art in the first place.

The photo at the top of this post is a gift my best friend gave me many years ago. I’m sure it was expensive and to many, would be defined as art.

I just think it’s twisted.

He actually spent money on that piece for me, where as I bought myself these pieces.

 

 

Here are some more examples of “art” in his home and “art” in mine.

 

 

His is on the left, mine on the right

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His choice on top

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My choice is “twisted” artwork from my grandson, at 9 and then 11 years old.

Please don’t get me wrong. I am not saying my best friend is twisted. As a matter of fact, here is my newest absolute favorite piece of art, ironically, a gift from him. Not my chosen “style” by any means but he knew how moved I would be by this piece!

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I, on the other hand, by the definition of many, am quite happily Twisted.

Here’s proof:

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I mean, who runs for their camera before rescuing the cat stuck in the speaker cabinet???

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And who focuses on the body of the dragonfly, rather than on the beautiful flowers?
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And who becomes obsessed with their new phone camera’s macro feature when accidentally shooting her sweat-pant leg?
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And who screeches her car to a halt to snap a photo of the shadow of windshield water on her dashboard?
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Who thinks the frosting stain on the cake box is the equivalent of a Jesus face on burnt toast?
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And who in the world photographs fungus??

I do, that’s who. So I will now officially, and gladly accept the adjective of TWISTED!

I am in great company, as you know if you have ever read The Shameful Sheep or Jennifer Day at The Iconophile, two of my favorite bloggers.

I really felt it while I was going through all kinds of contortions trying to photograph my friend’s art, including, taking his series called “the 7 deadly sins” into a dark closet to eliminate some of the reflection. Didn’t work, and besides, too creepy! This is as good as I could get.

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This is a seriously twisted series and the photos are lousy!

It’s not just about art though.

Just the other day, a newish friend, while I was introducing him to my Bugs, asked me if I realized just how twisted it was for me to be this enthusiastic about them.

He has no idea. Even I know it is completely torqued to set up the photo shoots I have with my bugs.

Witness these, as examples…

 

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I won’t even get started on the debate we have about Photography as ART!!

Anyway, I know this is a long post, with a lot of photos, but the topic and the recent Daily Post announcement inspired me to do less censoring than I usually apply to my weekly photo challenge entry.

I’ll end on this note.

Initially, I was of like mind with many other contributors this week. I immediately thought of these things:

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But then I allowed the word to take me on this unexpected journey.

For that, I wish to express deep gratitude to The Daily Press for your regular inspiration for so many posts!! I will really miss you.

Sincerely,

ChosenPerspectives

 

PS I have received many Twisted gifts over the years from other twisted folks. Here are a couple involving antlers…yikes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SongLyricSunday theme 1-7-18 “Madness”

This theme touches me deeply. I have had so many clients in my 40 some years in private practice who are terribly damaged because the responsible adults in their lives when they were kids, told them they were “crazy”.

Their attempts at art or music were criticized.

Their young and innocent goals were diminished.

They had just imagined that abuse.

They were told often enough that they were crazy, they actually began to wonder…and that WILL drive you to MADNESS, not being able to trust your own intelligence, perceptions and intuition in your life.

(This post is dedicated to my compassionate friend in Kentucky. You know who you are and you are not CRAZY!)

Crazy by Gnarls Barkley (CeeLo Green and Danger Mouse)

Lyrics

I remember when
I remember, I remember when I lost my mind
There was something so pleasant about that place
Even your emotions have an echo in so much space

And when you’re out there, without care
Yeah I was out of touch
But it wasn’t because I didn’t know enough
I just knew too much

Does that make me crazy?
Does that make me crazy?
Does that make me crazy?
Possibly

And now that you are having the time of your life
Well think twice
That’s my only advice

Come on now, who do you
Who do you, who do you
Who do you think you are?
Ha ha ha, bless your soul
You really think you’re in control?
Well

I think you’re crazy
I think you’re crazy
I think you’re crazy
Just like me

My heroes had the heart
To lose their lives out on a limb
And all I remember, is thinking
I wanna be like them
Mm hmm ever since I was little
Ever since I was little it looked like fun
And it’s no coincidence I’ve come
And I can die when I’m done

Maybe I’m crazy
Maybe you’re crazy
Maybe we’re crazy
Probably ooh hmm

Written by Brian Joseph Burton, Gian Piero Reverberi, Gianfranco Reverberi, Thomas Callaway, Thomas Decarlo Callaway • Copyright © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc, Universal Music Publishing Group, BMG Rights Management US, LLC
Another video version with the lyrics…

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Song Lyric Sunday Theme for 1/7/18