Shutter Fever 2015 – Week 4

I’ve caught this week by its tail! I’m feeling pretty great that I managed to spend the morning with my camera before the week ran away πŸ™‚ I did some absolutely random things, hoping to strike on an idea or a picture that I could share. None of them really materialized today, but they have left me with a couple of ideas to read about and try over the coming weeks.

I have being seeing a lot of beautiful still life pictures around the web, on people’s blogs and on Flickr. I’ve had a bunch of flowers sitting on my dining table for a few days now, that were just begging to be photographed πŸ™‚ So, here goes! Simple and pretty, these flowers made for some really nice pictures. As always, your comments and thoughts are most welcome.

Flowers

Shutter Fever 2015 – Week 3

As the city wakes.

It was a hazy morning, the Sun was just rising behind me and downtown Portland was waking up.
I love going up to this spot on Mt Tabor, as one can see the little homes and shops of Southeast Portland meeting the tall, busy downtown.. I liked how, as the day started up, I could see Hawthorne Blvd (the street in the photograph) getting busy with morning commuters.
Mt Tabor is a sprawling green hill in the middle of this hustle and bustle. I feel wonderful living in a place where we have such easy access to tall trees and quiet green woods.

I have wanted to try shooting the cityscape for a while now, and have never truly been satisfied with the results. I am not absolutely happy, even with this picture, to be honest… I just thought it was better than most of my trials prior to it. It is still something I have to work at, and I will share a picture once I feel like I have done it better.

(This entry is a day late, but I figured, better late than never) πŸ˜€

Your thoughts and comments are much appreciated.

Cityscape

Shutter fever 2015 – Week 2

For my photo op this week, I decided to give monochrome another shot. I have always loved black and white photography – I think there is a certain beauty in the starkness of the picture and there is a sharp, dramatic look that can never come in color. Since I have had my DSLR, I’ve had the option to shoot in monochrome, rather than having to depend on software to create the effect. I have always found, though, that my monochrome pictures are never as sharp or dramatic or stark as I would like them to be. They would always look a little washed in grey, overly bright and overall, very dull-ish and soft, in my eyes.

With this idea in mind, I decided I wanted to click a couple of pictures around the house, of little things (hoping to have more control over light, backdrop etc. than I would if I was outdoors). I spent most of the day in a bit of a block, feeling like I was dry out of subjects to shoot! Finally I settled down with a pine cone and a coffee mug sleeve. My attempts at good monochrome photography is still a work in learning progress, but here are two pictures from my attempt, this time. I’d appreciate your comments and thoughts on what I can do differently/better πŸ™‚

Monochrome Monochrome

Shutter fever 2015 – week 1

Shutter fever 2015 is my little 52 week project for the year. After much contemplation of whether I wanted to join a group or go solo, I decided to pick something up for myself – so I set my own guidelines and let my creativity go which way it pleases. The project is a simple idea, one picture a week, every week this year. I figure, this will help me keep my blog regularly updated (which I usually fail miserably at doing), and keep reading and trying new things with my camera.

So, for week 1 – a month or two ago, my mother was reading something on the Nikon school blog, and shared the article with me. It was a tutorial, of sorts, about using household lights (flashlights, desk lamps etc) to shoot still life. It was intriguing, and when she tried it out, her pictures were pretty awesome, too! I had bookmarked it, and had wanted to give it a go for a while. So when I started off with this project, I figured now was the chance.

Your thoughts and comments on the picture are appreciated – let me know what you think! πŸ™‚

Ganesha

Fall is (still) here!

While most of the US has already started seeing snow and freezing temperatures, Portland is enjoying what I believe is a beautiful, mild fall. Sure, we had a week of freezing cold, but that passed and we’re having sweater and sneakers weather now. The leaves are turning and we’ve had some rain – it is definitely not winter, yet, though.

We have been having some gorgeous, overcast days, and I went out to get some pictures in a nearby park. It is a sprawling green space bang in the middle of town – an oasis of calm surrounded by the buzz and rush of traffic and everyday life, in general. It was one of the first places my husband took me to, when I moved to Portland and it has become one of my favorite spots to go, to take a walk or go for a run, or even to simply go and sit with a book.

Enjoy the pictures – A Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!

Laurelhurst (10)Laurelhurst (6) Laurelhurst (14) Laurelhurst (22) Laurelhurst (36)

Go green! Adding a splash of colour around the home

This post definitely qualifies under a “Random” tag, if I were to have one. We have a backyard neighbor, who has a nice thicket of bamboo that has been shooting to great heights this summer – and sadly, digging roots into our garden wall. We keep watching our wall for cracks and keep having to chop down excess growth from between our fence planks.

This past week, when we cut up a nice lot of the intrusive bamboo, I hadn’t the heart to throw the fresh green shoots into the compost bin. So, I brought them in and set them in a bottle of water on our dining table, saying, “I’ll throw them out when they lose color…”

I took a few pictures while the color lasted, and now sadly, they’re beginning to wilt, and I fear it’s time I threw them out.

Getting some green in :)

Bamboo!

A hiatus, now ending :)

Hello, hello! It has indeed been too long, since I have done anything with my little space. Time seems to have just passed me by, and looking back now, I realize it has been months since I have been here.

Well, suffice it to say; LOADS has been happening this year. First off, I went from being a Miss. to a Mrs. this past March πŸ™‚ I have, since, moved to Portland, have a new job and have settled into an awesome (not so new anymore) life! Spring was in the air when I moved here, and it was a spectacular time to be with nature.

I’m sharing some pictures here, for starters, and I will get cracking with more, very soon πŸ™‚

Flowers FlowersΒ  022

“I am 20” – a short film

For the Fifty-2 Weeks Project, the theme this week asked us to discuss a movie or a documentary we had seen recently. Here’s what I came up with. Though this has nothing to do with photography, I thought I’d share it πŸ™‚

I would not call myself a movie buff. Sure, I do enjoy a good film, and have a few all-time favourites. I am someone who can watch those favourites over and over again, never tiring of them. If a movie truly makes an impact, I might recommend it to a friend or to my mother. I have been brought up in a household where literature, music, current affairs or documentaries take greater importance than films do. If one of us buys a book, it will make its rounds between the different members of the family. If there is a music concert worth listening to, on TV, my grandfather will make phone calls to suggest that the rest of us might want to tune in. Whilst a film on TV would be good entertainment for a lazy afternoon, going to the theatres to catch a new release is a rare event in my family, if ever. That was something I picked up during my college years, thanks to my friends. Even so, when it comes to discussing something that made an impact on me, in my books, a film does not cut it. Films have entertained me, sometimes moved me to momentary tears – a good film or two maybe even made me think, a tiny bit…but, that is about all.

About two weeks ago, I came across a documentary titled I am 20 made by the Films Division of India, in 1967. It is a collection of interviews, with the then youth of India, all born on the 15th of August 1947 (The day India gained independence from British rule). The documentary showcases the dreams and hopes, the aspirations for the future and the fears and frustrations of this group of youngsters. One of the first things that amazed me about this piece of work was the cross-section that it covered. There were 20 year olds from every walk of life and from every imaginable socio-economic bracket in the country. Where you heard from a poor farmer in rural India, who had no time for big things like politics and social change, you also heard from a young man in the air-force, whose patriotism and pride for his country shone bright. If one young woman found the idea of a social life so foreign, the mere mention of it made her dissolve into giggles, then there was an air-hostess who took pride in fact that she and her circle of friends were in the thick of the urban elite socialite life. The gamut of ideologies and thought processes on a variety of topics ranging from politics and education to entertainment and marriage that have been captured are truly mind-boggling.

Watching the documentary gave me a lot to think about. The generation in question is the one my grandparents belong to. Nuances of the points of view that were brought out through this short film can be seen even today in the way my grandparents think or in their view of life. Watching this got me thinking about how stark a difference there is between 20 year olds then and the same age group, now. It seems to me, that youth back in the day were more responsible and more socially aware and involved, than the kids of today. They seem to have clearer visions of what they wanted for their futures to be like, of what they wanted their political system to provide them, and most importantly, what they could do for their country’s development and betterment. I don’t mean to generalise, but we, today’s generation, seem more worried about the brands we wear and use, where and what we eat and the newest movie/music sensation. In 20 year olds these days, I don’t see the seriousness and the sense of direction and planning that seems to shine from each of those youngsters. Perhaps the difference lies in the fact that they were the first generation to grow up in an independent India, and were perpetually hearing of what a struggle life was for their parents, while we are caught up in a storm of globalisation and in a time, when freedom (in all senses) is a given. Maybe the propriety and conduct from those days have watered down, and society has relaxed in every aspect, from the way we speak to the things we wear. Listening to the grammatically proper Hindi and English that that generation spoke, was like listening to a teacher or a professor – it made me acutely aware of the slang and mix-match of languages we addle with these days.

I speak here of seemingly little things, but it is because I am grappling – a mere 19 minutes made such an impact on me that I am having a difficult time putting it in words. I fear that if I write on, I will ramble, going into smaller and smaller things, while being unable to vocalise the impact of the bigger picture. I am sharing below, a link to the documentary. When you watch it, I believe you might see what I did and understand what I am trying to say here. Watching this documentary was like being taken back into a time period, being a part of a generation and understanding their lifestyle, thoughts, ideas and outlooks – a whole world apart from yours and mine.

I am 20: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QTkvs1LNu5A

The things from everyday

Here’s something I clicked for my Fifty-2 Weeks project on Facebook. It’s already week 48 if you’d believe that! The year has really flown past, hasn’t it? I am curious, how are people doing on their resolutions for the year? πŸ™‚

So, this week’s theme asked me to showcase a personal space. Here’s what I came up with. Typically one might find my laptop, my camera and most definitely a book or two, in a space that would be considered “mine”.

Here’s my entry πŸ™‚

My space

Love at first sight

What can I say about the Taj Mahal that hasn’t been said before? Nothing, for I am but another in a long and never-ending line of her admirers. Words fail, and all adjectives seem to fall short when gazing upon the Taj.

All I can say is that, today, I am among those in this world who have been graced with her presence. I have stood spellbound and awe-struck in front of her, and I have returned, humbled by her beauty and elegance. “Waah, Taj!”, indeed!

The Taj at dawnSunlight plays games!The moods of the TajD7000 (31)