Each year my husband Rick and I each choose three words that will guide and inspire us through the course of the year. My words for 2015 were “create”, “celebrate,” and “energize,” and I was fortunate to have done a lot of all three. I still love those words and will carry their spirit with me into 2016, but they are action words guiding what I do.
For 2016 I have chosen “gratitude,” “mindfulness,” and “authenticity,” words that reflect the spirit that I wish to bring to everything I do, principles that will help me live more fully, more consistently with my values. Words that remind me to be myself in the present moment, and never for a moment forget how lucky I am.
Happy New Year to all of you, and may you all have as much joy in your lives as I have in mine.
I had a delightful lunch with Kristi Cromwell at Tower Hill Botanic Garden last week, and we had a wonderful time strolling through the gardens. They have beautiful cannas planted in pots throughout the garden, and this this beauty really caught my eye. She was bold and sassy, and I really wanted to do her justice. But I was shooting with my point and shoot camera that day, so when I looked at the image at home, all I saw was the distracting background.
Fortunately, I love playing with filters almost as much as I love shooting, so I brought the sassy gal into Photoshop where I used several presets from Totally Rad’s RadLab plus a duplicated layer set to “multiply” to get the look I wanted. Bye-bye background, and hello gorgeous!
It was over 3 weeks ago that we enjoyed what we thought was the last Pink Apricot Serenade daylily – the queen of our garden. Yet a little over a week ago a new bud began to form, and we knew we were in for one more treat. Each day it got a little bigger, and we thought it would bloom this past Thursday, although we hoped it wouldn’t since the forecast was for heavy rain. And she held out for one more day, blooming gloriously on September 11th, a beacon of hope on this most solemn of days.
Coneflowers are one of my favorite flowers, and I always enjoy spending time among them in our garden. As with all flowers, each one has its own personality, and this one really caught my eye. She seems to be looking up at the sky with a sense of joy I could feel as well as see. And I love the soft glow effect from the Lensbaby Velvet 56.
I wasn’t familiar with the Gerald De Nerval quote, but once I found it I knew i was the perfect complement to my lovely coneflower.
Processed with On1 Perfect Effects 9, customized preset from Nicole S. Young’s Portland Matte presets, and added Lemoncello from Flypaper Textures and Light it Up #19 From 2 Li’l Owls.
The daylilies in our garden have given us a magnificent show all summer. Although most of them have finished blooming, we are lucky that the most majestic of them all is still strutting her stuff.
She is called Pink Apricot Serenade, and she holds court in the far upper corner of our garden where she can be seen and enjoyed up close and from afar.
This majestic beauty may have been the most glorious all season. Wider than my hand span (about 7 inches) and bursting with life, she summoned me to shoot what would have been many rolls of film, and I’m so thankful that digital photography gives me that freedom! The early evening light was magical, and shooting toward the west gave me a lovely background.
Processed in Photoshop with a touch of Oil Paint from Snap Art 4 and 2 textures (Caspian and Brushed Rose) from Flypaper Textures, using Adobe Paper Textures.