Still Life in the Morning

The other morning, I was reading the paper and drinking coffee, when I noticed that the coffee cup and newspaper made a pleasing composition.  I started to pick up my iPhone, but then thought- Hmmm, if I pull the plant over a bit and get some strawberries it will look even better.  I quickly made an arrangement, snapped ONE photo, edited it in Snapseed, uploaded it to instagram, and then continued to drink my coffee and read the newspaper (and ate the strawberries . . .). If only I could have still life composition ideas come to me that easily all the time!

I was about halfway through my coffee, when I thought of getting out my Nikon and taking the photo again.  After all, one of the BeStill 52 prompts was cuppa.  I got out more strawberries and tried to duplicate my iPhone photo- trickier than it sounds, considering focal length, depth of field etc.

So here are some Sunday morning stills, quickly taken.  All have two layers of Kim’s grunge texture added.



And here is the original iPhone photo.

Photo Aug 31, 9 08 00 AMLinking up today with Texture Tuesday.

Winery in Arizona???

Having moved from just outside the California wine country, we were surprised to discover that there are indeed some wineries in Arizona. On Saturday we visited the Granite Creek Vineyards in Chino Valley with friends and were delighted find a bit of the California wine country ambiance only 15 minutes or so from home!

Lonnie and I both felt a bit of a rural Sonoma County vibe as we walked onto the grounds and wandered over to the tasting room- a very small, rustic building with just enough room to stand and hold a wine glass.  There was a band playing outside (sixties and seventies rock, I think), and people were sitting around eating and sipping wine under the trees.  Best of all, photographically speaking, there was a small barn and some outbuildings, wine barrels, and some old farm machinery lying around.  And oh yes- there was a vineyard.  We felt right at home!

I will most likely post more images as the week goes on, but here are a couple detail shots.

Old window


Barn door


Lost- and FOUND!

This week I was going through my antique dental cabinet and discovered some seashells that I hadn’t seen since the move to Arizona.  I had always kept my father’s shells from his tour in the Pacific in World War II in the cabinet, but didn’t realize that MY small collection had been put in there too.  I KNEW they would turn up somewhere!  I have photographed the little green one before, but felt compelled to shoot it again, because, well,  I was just so happy to see it again! So the shells are this week’s Friday Find.

shells1_layout shells2_layout

And, of course, here is a black and white version.


A Few Random Clicks

Jade plant

jade_layoutSome bottles and jars (note the wizard oil!)


Golden Hour- EXTREME edition

We have lived in Arizona for a year now, and I am still obsessed with the changing skies.  On Monday night, we looked out the window to see this (captured with my iPhone):

Photo Aug 25- 7 02 00 PMI grabbed my Nikon and ran outside.  Unfortunately my macro lens (85mm) was on the camera, but, knowing how quickly light can change, I didn’t take the time to change it to my zoom to be able to capture a wide angle view. By the time, I got outside, the rainbow had faded and everything was bathed in an almost eerie golden light.


The clouds in every direction were shades of pink and gold, which darkened during the 5-10 minutes I took these photos.


20140825-DSC_3431_melinda_anderson20140825-DSC_3439_melinda_anderson-EditAll the photos have only minor exposure and clarity adjustments. The last one has Kim Klassen’s everyday texture added.




Sunflower Monochromes

My grocery store sunflowers are starting to droop and turn brown on the edges, alas.  I took a bunch of macro shots- and then turned two of my favorites to high contrast, split-toned black and whites, which I then textured with Kim Klassen’s golden.

20140824-DSC_3427_melinda_anderson-Edit 20140824-DSC_3425_melinda_anderson-EditLinking up with Texture Tuesday today.

Prairie Sunflowers

Prairie sunflowers! At our monthly photography club meeting last week, I learned that the Flagstaff area is blanketed with prairie sunflowers in August and September.  Bonito Park, north of Flagstaff, is a particularly photogenic spot as it sits between Sunset Crater and the San Francisco Peaks.  My husband and I headed up there on Saturday and found it lives up to its reputation.

Here is the meadow with Sunset Crater in the background.


Looking the other direction, I photographed the sunflowers with the San Francisco peaks behind them.

20140823-DSC_3269_melinda_anderson-Edit 20140823-DSC_3185_melinda_anderson-EditAs we began the drive home, we enjoyed seeing prairie sunflowers in bloom everywhere.



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