Farewell to the class of 2014

I find inspiration in working with young people; exciting lives ahead of them using the gifts they have been blessed with. Best wishes to the class of 2014 and thanks for the memories…



dreams timeline

Canon 5D Mark 2, available light, black and white ,
2.8 at 1/250, ISO 200

You may say I’m a dreamer,
But I’m not the only one. ~ John Lennon

I would venture to say that it’s healthy to dream and establish goals, but the practical side of me thinks that too much dreaming means you get nothing done. Too much time spent dreaming means you may be missing the enjoyment of everyday life in your search for utopia or grandiose achievements.

Traveling the globe, photographing the 7 wonders of the world and beyond is my wildest dream, but in reality I’d probably tire of that lifestyle rather quickly due to the constant days on the road with pressure to catch that once in a lifetime shot.  Truth is, I’m kind of an ordinary homebody.  I am also the queen of multitasking so why not combine my ordinary kind of dreaming with achieving?

Dream of improving fitness level:  ( I live in Minnesota) Notice the subtle changes of seasons while on a power walk and consider nature on an artistic level.  Watch a travel show or documentary while on the treadmill to expand knowledge of the world. (Currently following the Karl Pilkington British T.V. series An Idiot Abroad on Netflix.  Can’t imagine why this show draws me in!

Dream of simple pleasures:  Find enjoyment during the work day whether it be a funny joke told by a co-worker, an interesting conversation, or a pleasant drive to or from work.  Appreciate the beauty of sunrises and sunsets and you may find they have a calming effect.  Remember who created that beauty and be thankful with prayer.  Appreciate the little things in life such as a good, hot cup (or 2) of delicious coffee in the morning. ( Bonus points if I don’t have to make it myself.) What is your simple pleasure?

Dream of a productive day:  Make a checklist of tasks and feel the glow of satisfaction as you make each big, fat check…done.

Dream of writing a book:  While I do not have a book on the horizon, I will be working on photography and design of E-Book covers for a talented writer of historic fiction.  Kind of a dream in itself while helping another fulfill her dream.

Dream of a tidy, everything in its place, uncluttered type of organized home and life:  Ummm… I’ve got nothing for that one.  Any ideas?

Enough dreaming for one day… I’ve got things to do!

Am I a pyromaniac?


5D Mark 2 ~ 5.6 at 1/160 ~ 70-200 lens ~ 160 ISO ~ Alien Bee Lights

A pyromaniac is the term used for an arsonist who plays with fire.  What do you call a person that plays with fire in Photoshop?

Hmmm…  A phoromaniac?  Sounds like a word you’d hear coming out of Astro’s mouth.  (the Jetson’s dog.)

Embracing Winter

Since Gov. Dayton has declared all public schools closed for Monday, January 6 due to dangerous temps and wind chills, it seems fitting to blend some snow images.  While the temps warmed up to -4 degrees F on the day these images were captured, it really didn’t seem all that cold.  (The subject may beg to differ since she had fewer layers on than me.)

Embracing Winter

Embracing Winter

Photo Info: Canon 5D Mark 2 / ISO 160 / aperture 2.8 / shutter 1/800
Two images blended plus a little extra “snow” added in the air with Album DS clipart.  Album DS is a software plug-in for Photoshop which, interestingly enough, is based out of Spain.

I’m glad I’m not outside capturing these images today!  Even I have limits…

Picture Perfect? Nope.

Traditional, eye pleasing, balanced family portraits with each individual  arranged perfectly have always been a challenge for me. I would not last long as a church directory photographer. While it is good to document a period in time for a family unit, we adults don’t seem to like how we look in portraits.  (Oh, I look so old, fat, my ankles appear too thick, can you give my husband 6-pack abs and a smile?  While you are at it, thin my thighs and waist…)   Then to find a background in the midst of Christmas chaos.  Oh, my.

2013xmascard inside1dBWFB

So, for the annual holiday card, rather than striving for the “perfect” portrait I decided to celebrate our imperfect, unique, quirky lives with a photo that embraces reality.  We are all leading lives that cover quite a wide spectrum of vocations, educations, interests and then you add a two-year-old.  It is what it is.

Thank you to my mother-in-law for crawling up onto a step ladder to capture this chaos.

Canon 5D Mark 2, Canon 24-70 L lens, ISO 3000, Gary Fong flash diffuser on a Canon 580 speedlight

I leave you with a toast for 2014:  Here’s to another year of experience.