Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Dark and Light

I want to post some of my favourite photos from Ericalokichicken's Flickr photostream. The first one, Sailboats, is incredible because of the patterns of light and dark. As well, I like the contrast between the spikey linear masts and the round shapes of the boat hulls. Finally the wavery reflections suggest the emphemeral aspect of this moment in time.

This next photo, The Drive Home, also uses light/dark contrasts in monochromatic blue to create a haunting and dramatic mood. The interior shot, the shade of blue, and the childlike reflected face suggest the psychological interior of memory.

This next one is called Shadow Reflection. As the title tells us, it is another exploration of reflection -- self in the world. This photo is a lovely use of negative space, with the body shadow appearing as a transparent silhouette against trees, which as themselves are silhouetted against the sky. All of these layered images are but reflections themselves. I think. It is very interesting and complex, both as an image and also in terms of the ideas the photographer is playing with.

Friday, March 13, 2009

sock puppet art from robot nine

I was looking for images of sock puppets, and came across this great photo of sock monkeys on the website Robot Nine. This website has lots of interesting photographs and arty images.

Here is another great photograph from Robot Nine. It is from a series called "Lonely Trees." This site especially focuses on quirky themes, like "Food Art," "Trailer Trash Dolls," and "Skeleton Sculptures."

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Making Pizza

Food, and the making of it, has always been an important part of my daily life. Cooking is an act of creativity and a gesture of love for the people that I care about. It is also work, especially at the end of a long, exasperating day, when I am hungry and haven't given a thought to what's for supper until the minute that I walk in the door.

It is also work in a satisfying way. With the work of my hands and creative mind, I use the bounty of the earth to fashion something to please the appetite and all the senses. Together, we sit down and share food, talk, and tell the stories of each of our days.

I have always believed that it is important for a family to sit down and eat together. I also believe in cooking from scratch (although I am not dogmatic about this; yes, I do use canned tomato sauce). I like to use food that I have grown or gathered. But winters are long here.

So it is pleasing to me that each of my children has grown up appreciating food. Each of them enjoys cooking and is, or is becoming a good cook.

These pictures that I have included here show a pizza that my son made when he was fourteen. He made the pizza dough, spread the sauce, found various things in the fridge to use as toppings, grated cheese, and added herbs.

(Cheese, of course, is one of the fundamental food groups for teenagers.)

He baked it and served it to us for supper. What a satisfying meal, and what a great way to be a family together! It also was a wonderful lesson for him about the value and rewards of daily work.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Urban Sketchers

The images above, titled Bounty Hunters, were created by Cathy Gatland from South Africa. This art is posted on Urban Sketchers, a cool art blog that includes artists from all over the world. Participation on Urban Sketchers (USk) is by invitation. All of the images are sketched on location and must have an urban theme. There is also a Flickr group that is open to all, and a Google discussion group.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

The Canadian Rocky Mountains

This is a photo of the Rocky Mountains near Banff/Lake Louise. I drove through this area in October and took this picture.

I love mountains, and am fortunate to live in a mountainous area. Sometimes after sitting in an office all day at my computer solving problems, I come away grumpy and full of worries. But it only takes a long look out the window at the mountains to put things back in perspective again. On a sunny day, I can see mountains from my office window.

Even better, I can do more than look out the window. I can and do spend lots of time outdoors. In the winter, I ski, both downhill and cross-country. Recently I have started back-country touring, and also I am learning how to do telemark turns. The photo above is a view from our local ski hill -- spectacular!

Landscapes often inspire my photography and also my painting. In fact, quite a few of my poems include landscape imagery as well. Place, and the natural landscapes that surround me, are very important to me and influence the choices I make about where to live, work, and play.