Resting on the Bones of Winter

Resting On The Bones Of Winter

I love it when quirks of natural light play with the perception. This isn’t a black and white photo. It hasn’t been desaturated. It’s a full colour picture taken on a day with a sky so grey it seemed to blanket everything in nothingness. That little bird seemed happy enough though!

Prints of this photograph are available at http://www.deviantart.com/print/39251676/

Also, a nice little bit of news. I was recently interviewed for Project Educate on DeviantArt so if you want to read my ramblings about creativity, community and online volunteering, you can do so here.

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Altar: Public Ritual and Art Show

Last month, I spent an evening (or rather an early-hours-of-the-morning) posing for photographs with translucent material stapled to my right arm, from wrist to elbow. Anyone who knows me will be aware that I really do not do posing for photographs that other people are taking but this opportunity was too interesting to pass up…and the concept involved most of my face and body being obscured by fabric and shadow so I could just about handle it.

Apart from really wanting to experience having my body stapled in the name of art, I was also very excited to work with Coral Mallow, an artist, educator, activist and story teller who works with body modification and ordeal paths. You can see Coral’s website at CoralMallow.com and also visit her on Facebook.

Coral’s Altar collection was shown at Evolution House in Edinburgh last weekend and the official opening night on Friday included a public ritual where performer Tiger Strode was released from a cocoon in front of an audience of art lovers. I was there with my camera to document the evening. Here are a few of the pictures I took…

Altar Gallery 03

Altar Gallery 05

Altar Gallery 06

Altar Gallery 08

Altar Ritual 04

Altar Ritual 07

Altar Ritual 10

Altar Ritual 13

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Winter Moments With The Broken Holga

Holga Self-Portrait

Holga Patio

Holga Country Garden

Holga Wreath

The ‘bad’ news is the Holga lens that fits my Sony Alpha a550 dSLR is broken and the focusing ring, such as it was to start with, doesn’t move at all now. The good news is this doesn’t matter because the joy of this wonderful little gadget is in the complete lack of control I have over it. Instead of the usual All The Settings! experience of shooting with a dSLR, the Holga lens provides the opportunity to simply point a camera at something, press a button and see what comes out.

The photos above were taken during December 2015 and capture little moments of my lovely winter holiday with my family. I’m really looking forward to spending a more time with my little broken Holga lens over the coming months and revelling in the wonder of imperfection.

Prints of the top image are available at http://www.deviantart.com/print/39169948/

This post contains affiliate links.

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Galileo Thermometer Through a Migraine

Galileo Thermometer

This lovely thing is a Galileo (or Galilean) thermometer, or at least a close-up of a little bit of it. If you’ve never encountered one before, Wikipedia will explain what they are. I took this photo a couple of weeks ago but only got around to processing and posting it now. It was a bit experimental and I’m not talking about the photographic techniques (which were perfectly standard).

I’ve had migraines for as long as I can remember. If you’re not sure what migraines are all about and think they’re ‘just headaches’, take a quick trip over to Wikipedia again. When I have a migraine, everything becomes painfully intense – light, sound, smell, touch, everything – and my motor control (ability to coordinate doing things with parts of my body) is affected. That stuff, accompanied with the vicious headache and nausea, means that a migraine for me is like a ridiculously painful psychedelic nightmare.

I’ve never taken photos during a migraine attack before and decided to give it a try. The aim was to not only take a photo while it was difficult to see and focus properly and while operating my hands was awkward, but also to create a finished picture that showed how the subject of the photo looked to me while the migraine was in full swing.

Because using a flash or any other kind of artificial lighting would’ve caused more pain than I was willing to inflict on myself in the name of art, I set the glass thermometer on a windowsill and used the fading late afternoon light from outside as my only source of lighting.

It wasn’t a pleasant experience. I didn’t expect it to be. But I wanted to do it at least once, just for the hell of it, and now I have. I always shoot in RAW so I used Photoshop CC’s RAW processor to boost the vibrance and saturation of the image and capture the intensity of colour that I experience during a migraine. So there you have it!

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Goodness Gracious Great Snails of Fire

Great Snails of Fire

We have a family of small orange ramshorn snails that live in one of our aquariums, hanging out with the goldfish and keeping things nice and clean. Today all the snails decided to congregate on the LED strip at the top of the tank and they looked so lovely, all lit up and glowy, that I couldn’t resist taking a photo of one. This little guy was particularly beautiful.

Nothing to do with snails, but I am SO glad to be back at the computer, processing photos and doing internet stuff! I had a monster of a migraine since Boxing Day so I was on seriously limited screen time, pretty much checking work emails quickly on my phone with the brightness turned right down and not doing anything else, so it feels like Christmas all over again just being able to use my laptop.

My husband and I, along with our travelling cats, are back in Edinburgh after a relaxing holiday with my parents in Northern Ireland and I’m looking forward to going through the photos I took over the last few days and sharing some of them here soon.

I hope you all had a lovely festive season and I’d like to send extra special love to all those heroic souls whose jobs don’t allow for time off or who have to work extra hours over Christmas and New Year. You are amazing.

Prints of this photograph are available at http://www.deviantart.com/print/39102285/

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