Entries in photography (3)
As 2011 draws to a close, I've been reflecting on the last year. My resolutions for 2011 were:
- Finish things
- Take better care of myself
- Do more and do less
I can't say that I was hugely successful, but I wasn't a complete failure either. I had hoped that I would update the blog with how I was feeling and accomplishing these goals, but I didn't. This is my first update since my orginal post on Janauary 7, 2011.
This is still a work in progress. In January, I started a self portrait project which I had good intentions about, but when I began to do out of obligation rather then the love of creating photographs I stopped. It wasn't meant to be an obligation. It was supposed to be something fun to document my life. I have started a 365 project multiple times, but I have yet to finish. At the moment I am considering options for next year, but not making any commitments... yet.
I participated in three Virtual Quilting Bees this year. One started in October 2010 and the second in January 2011. The third one ran for three months, January 2010 - March 2010. I have completed them all or I will once I get the instructions for the last month in December. I have had a lot of fun with it. I've been challenged and realized something about my sewing style. I like to sew things that are less precise. I do like hand sewing better then machine sewing. Part of me wants to sign up for another bee for 2012, but I am hesitant because towards the end it began to feel more like a chore then fun. Now that I have finished what I have commited to through the bees, I need to finish some of my started projects. Last fall I took a beginning quilting class and have the pieces ready to be sewn together for a finished quilt. I also have the blocks form when it was my month for the virtual quilting bees to sew together. For now I think I need to focus on these.
This semester has been particular tough for multiple reasons, but I am not going to go into detail on that topic. One of the things I have struggled with is whether it is worth it for me to finish my degree in a time when libraries are closing and cutting back on staff. I knew when I started in 2009 that the job outlook wasn't great, but it seems to be getting worse as time progresses. In the tough times quiting, sounds so much more appealing then working through tough projects and exams only to move on to the next much bigger test of a finding a job. I am not quiting! I am going to finish this degree, if for no other reason to be able to say I have a Masters Degree. I think I am becoming more realistic that my dream job may no longer exist and that I will have to settle, but I will finish and get a job! I am not whining; I am reflecting on the state of my life and how those choices are playing out in the larger arena of life. At the moment it looks like I will graduate in May of 2013.
This blog has been devoted to my musings and sharing what is happening in our life. Lately, I have not been posting here because I have been busy working on a blog project for school. I need to create a blog database of materials I would want to collect in a teen library of my choosing. I have done a lot of reading for the project and now need to get writing and posting. It is due on December 14 which is taking up a lot of my time and energy. If you would like to take a peak, check it out here. By the way it will be a work in progress until December 14 unless I finish early which is unlikely!
You can watch for follow-ups to my resolutions here in the upcoming weeks.
I used to not like having photos taken of me, I think it is part of the reason I ended up behind the camera so often (for more photos from my childhood, check flickr). You can ask my friends and family, I was always the one taking photos. While there are plenty of photos of me growing-up, as I got older and had my own camera I was often missing from the photos. Over the last few years, I've realized that this is not the best practise and have even grown to like being in photos. I even started a self-portrait project in 2007 that I failed to finish (and even retried over the last few years).
I often take photos of myself or want to be in group photos with others. I've gotten creative with how I go about this and have used all manner of methods for propping my camera... rocks, pillows, car hoods, fences, etc., not to mention a tripod. You name it my camera has probably rested on it in order to get a photo of myself. Recently, I came across a blog post from Ashley at Under the Sycamore on how she gets into photographs. She shared her tips and tricks along with great photographs to illustrate. Take a look and try out her methods. Like her I use a timer, myself and Joel (she uses Chris). I also use a remote for my camera that is a lot easier then a timer and saves a bit of running around.
Get into those photos even if you don't want to because your friends and family will appreciate it. In another blog post, Ashley discusses a woman who inspired her to be in more of her photos with her kids. The woman, Aleida Franklin, a mom and scrapbooker, made sure she took at least one photo of her with her kids per month. Unfortunately, she died in a car accident, but her children still have the wonderful photos she purposely took. Not caring if she had her make-up on or her hair was done just right, but making sure she recorded the memories of the moment.
It is important to take photos of yourself, for the big events or the everyday happenings. Having photos of ourselves is a way for us to preserve our own memories and for those who out live us to remember the times they did have with us.
- How to Take Great Photos of Holiday Lights from NYI Photoworld: Some very good tips about taking photos of Christmas lights and other holiday festivities. I enjoy photographing Christmas lights and have done a bit of experimenting, you can find more of my photos on flickr and previous blog posts.
- Gadanke, Celebrate Your Story: Katie, the designer behind Gadanke, creates journals that inspire people to write about their life. I often want to write my life story, but often find that I don't have much to say. I realize my life is not going to have a published memoir that thousands will read, but the historian in me believes that someone someday will want to read about my day to day life. So, I think about journalling and sometimes I actually write things down. These look like the type of journals you can't help but write in! Also, check out Katie's blog, as she tells her story.
- Five Stress-Reducing Strategies for the Holiday Season by Erin on Uncluterer: These seem like common sense, but I know I don't do them all the time and they are easy enough to make a part of daily life even after the holidays!
- Nuclear Attacks 'More Surviorable then Most People Think' Say Government Officials by Adrian Covert on Gizmodo: I am always a sucker for these type of posts. I like reading apocalyptic fiction and thinking about if some sort serious natural disaster or apocalyptic event occured--would I survive? Would I even want to?
- Wally One Indoor+Outdoor Living Wall: This looks amazing and would bring so much color and life to a room. Now is there anywhere I can put it my house?
- Policies aren't really policies if you don't enforce them by Jessamyn West on librarian.net: Amen sister! West and another blogger reflect on enforcing policies in libraries. While I understand it can be a bit of challenge, I do agree. In my opinion, this should be said for every public place, not just libraries. A personal pet peeve of mine, is when it is clearly posted that dogs are not allowed in parks or on trails, yet walking right through or sitting at a park bench is a person with their dog. You all know I am a dog person, but my problem is I follow the rules and don't bring my dog where they are unwelcome... I leave them at home, I board them, I do whatever I have to do to follow the rules. Why does a police officer walking through the park not say anything to the pet owner sitting on the park bench? I understand this is not high on the priority list of policemen, but is it too much to ask them to leave the park. I want to go to the park with my dog, but I don't. Fortunately, since we have moved to Sacramento, we have discovered that there are a lot more dog parks and dog friendly people parks. Ok, I'll get off my soap box now.