Saturday, January 26, 2013

Variations on a Theme and Beyond

It seemed last year as if my photography literally took off 52 weeks ago when starting an e-course by Kim Klassen, Beyond Layers.  Sadly, it has come to an end... we are on to a new journey, Beyond Beyond, which I'll be sharing with you over the next year.

Week 1 - Take a series of photographs of a setting, from different angles, perspectives, etc.  Pay attention to each photograph with intention.

Stealing an idea from the infamous Viv Halliwell of Desktop Dreams, I'm going to digitally journal my assignments, so I can print them into a scrapbook at the end of the year.

Here's my result from this week:

paper from Teri Hanson's Serenity kit; frames from Katie Pertiet

I made a still using a cup I bought as a prop from TJMaxx, a stone heart from our pediatric palliative care retreat last summer, a few peachy-coral carnations from a boquet Edster got me for my birthday last week, an inexpensive, heart-shaped glass vase from Pat Catan's, and Julia Cameron's wonderful book, The Prosperous Heart: Creating a Life of Enough.


Kim shared her recent thoughts about being present...

And asked us to consider the following:

  • Did you enjoy the challenge, did you discover anything new about yourself, why is your favourite your favourite? What do you love most about it?
  • Was it difficult to find time for the exercise, did you feel rushed…..
  • Consider printing a small version of your fav and taping/gluing it inside your journal.

I did enjoy the challenge...very much.  I loved the colors and how so many items tied together.  I loved the different angles and then the creative rush that comes as I process them.  (I'll show you my favorite at the end.)

I did feel fact, I feel rushed most of the time.  I still recall Anythony Hopkins, playing C. S. Lewis in the movie, Shadowlands (A MUST SEE), "We live in the shadowlands.  Always wanting to be somewhere else...around the next bend...over the next hill." 

The problem with that is...we don't live where we the the now...seeing the abundant mercies of God He has lavished on us today, right now...

I am tempted, working full time, to want to rush the week away to the weekend.  It is the weekend when I have more flexibility to create, do indoor shooting (more light), do more writing, spending unscheduled time with my husband, dogs, and in solitude with my Savior.

And yet...even on the weekends...I feel this rush. may not fit everything in by the time Monday comes around again,says the Committee in my head.  (Sidenote:  This "committee" in my head is a recent epiphany which I'll write more about in future postings.)

As I write this, I'm feeling this pressure to get outside and take some snow photos, since it is the weekend and I have daylight available.  And keeps me from being totally present in my writing right now.  STOP IT!

Edster and I were going to go down to the Cuyahoga Valley National Park to do some photography today...

And there was discussion of possibly going to a matinee...

But his neuralgia pain from his 14 knee surgeries flares up horrendously with the bitter cold, and he's had to be off of his feet most of the day.

So he lays on the bed, I'm propped up with pillows sitting next to him with Arthur and Bruno on the bed as well...and my one camera with the 300mm lens beside me where I've captured some photos of birds that have shown up at the feeders...

I may do a still shot later...

Edster and I may walk the neighborhood with the dogs and camera if his knee feels better...

But is enough...I am present, I'm relishing in just having unscheduled, unfettered time...embracing (there's that word) so much right where I am, right now!

So here is my favorite shot...

Why?  I like the light...the kind of painterly, scratch effect...I used Kim's texture called "Italy" in my processing.

So I embrace today...whatever it holds...knowing that no matter what...God's gifts are mine.  And all is as it should be.


  1. your teacup photos are beautiful! I especially love the last one at the bottom. Would love to see some of the others in a larger format too!

  2. Really beautiful this is going to be fun making books I love your teacup so pretty......thanks for the mention my friend I hope Edster is feeling better the cold is awful ......

  3. Beautifully done, I love that shot also.

  4. Hi Denise,
    Nice to see you again in Beyond Beyond. I really like what you did with your teacup. I used a teacup/mug as well. I also love hearts, and I see that you used that as well. Your layout is really pretty. Did you use a scrapbook layout here or digital scraps?

  5. Wonderful photos and layout, Denise!! Looking forward to seeing more. :)

  6. I love how you've put this together...such a lovely vintage feel. The light on the cup and soft gentle color is so well caught. Gorgeous work! {sigh}

  7. Good for you to still find the time to work on this challenge. The last shot is lovely. As is the layout you did.

  8. What a pleasure to read your words that reveal so much and resonate so deeply and to see your talented composite followed by your choice. Each image is beautiful, but it's the creative, artistic endeavor that blows me away. Stunning!

  9. hi Denise...what a beautiful post. Kim is so right to savour each and every fact, that is my OWL that i am trying to abide by this year. I love your idea of digital scrapbooking your work...very nice. And i love the photo you chose. Wish i could come by and share a cup with you! :~)

  10. Soft and dreamy, dainty and elegant. You favorite is mine too - but I also really love your collage.

  11. Beautiful photos, so delicate and dreamy...and your thoughts are beautifully expressed. I love that you call the thoughts in your head "The Committee" It's very fitting and a perfect description!

  12. So I'm going to write something that some might find outrageous or infuriating: I don't like most scrapbooking arrangements. BUT... you and many of the other Beyonds -- from just this first assignment -- are persuading me that I need to rethink that. Your collage is beautiful; each shot is gorgeous and the paper background ties it all together artfully. Looking forward to seeing more of your work throughout the Beyond course.

    I have one of those committees in my head too. Hard to silence it at times.

    Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

  13. Imagine meeting you here, Denise! So happy to be sharing the Beyond Beyond experience with you. Also happy to know I'm not the only one who "borrows" ideas from other creative souls! You did a lovely job with this, it's so pretty, so soft, so inviting. And your thoughts about being "present" ... well, we all need to remind ourselves of that every waking moment, don't we?

  14. So very beautiful. I'm so glad to have found you through Beyond. Your art is amazing!


Every comment is read personally by me and is deeply appreciated!