Sleep Deprivation= Cheap Buzz
Tomorrow is my last day of the semester. I love this floaty, surreal, semi- twilight existence that goes along with sleep deprivation. I’ve been awake for 30 hours now; not too bad. I’ve seen plenty worse. (It involved hospitalization and wide awake REM states- no place for the faint of heart, m’ friend.) I’m good for powering through a final exam and an 8 page paper in a day, however, which is what my day consisted of- just as long as I get a 12 hour power sleep beforehand. I wouldn’t recommend trying this at home, kiddies! But it’s a way of life for me, and I seem to be at my best when my world is slightly ethereal with the soft fuzzies of sleep deprivation. It pushes me over the edge ever-so-slightly so that I get a much-needed blast of adrenaline. It’s better than coffee. 🙂 (And let’s face it, it’s a free buzz that carries with it no guilt.)
I’m managing to hold on to my A still in my Serial Killers class–which I finished an hour or so ago– and as long as I receive a good score on my final paper in my Forensic Anthropology course, I’ll have an A in that as well. I have a good feeling about it so I’m betting I’ll come away from it with my two A’s in tact.
I would write more, but I’m starting to teeter over onto the floor a bit- and I don’t think I’m supposed to be doing that.
Netflix is calling.
My vacation starts tomorrow evening (a whole 9 days to myself-YES) and I can’t wait to go to some ole boring park and take pics of absolutely nothing at all. That sounds like paradise!
Monet: Museum of Modern Art
This is for you, Al. :0) I wanted to share with you my processes for the resulting canvas print.
I first started with an original print of museum-goers at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, New York, who were admiring Monet’s Water Lilies. I took the pic back in 2010 on a trip to Manhattan/Times Square with my youngest daughter, Brianna. I was admiring the museum-goers as they were admiring Monet’s Water Lilies, which were enormous prints that covered each wall around the entire room. So, I snapped their pic with a wide angle lens. (They never even knew I was there.)
From there, I converted it into a B&W and did a basic colour hue shift on Monet’s Water Lilies. They were originally blue and green, but I preferred pumpkin orange. 😉 I incorporated several textures to give it a broken/damaged vibe (which I adore) and so the final result was this:
The people below aren’t the exact same, but the process is. (Only the group of people have changed.) From there, I ran it through various programs and tweaked it severely so that it would resemble a fauvist oil painting. I distorted the people a la Munch’s “The Scream” and gave the image bright, citrus Van Gogh colours. The final result became this:
And that is the extra large (60 x 38) 5 foot canvas print that was purchased for $1,138. Once I cut out the middle man, I will sell the print right at $1,000 roughly and double my royalty, but as you said, were it not for the middleman to begin with! (Hope you enjoyed the art show!) x
The Looking Glass
It’s 2:50 a.m.
Chance is going nuts, ripping and running around the living room. I just gave him a bath.
Brian Bob is chilling in his room- Brianna- the same. I should be sleeping, or doing homework, but I’ve just downloaded Tex Murphey: Overseer. Gaming is one of my coping mechanisms, much like millions of other people. Until my heart heals, I’ll trudge along the motions of my life- school, cleaning, cooking, sleeping, etc. and slip away into my game as often as possible. I just can’t process any more raw emotion at this time. Tex Murphy is a welcome escape.
I’m torn between another pistachio and almond ice cream cone and Guinness Extra Stout. I have a 6 pack in the fridge and it whispers to me. I keep forgetting to drink one. I decide on lemon and ginger tea with honey instead. I’ve had a migraine for two days now. (Imagine that.) I can’t do this again tomorrow. After two days, my mind starts fracturing into tiny bits of livewire pain- sizzling every nerve until it’s raw and jittery. It does little good to complain other than to serve as a reminder that I’m still suffering. It too is a welcome escape from the pain in my heart.
There’s nothing one can do but ride the wave of heartache after a breakup. One of my x’s is all over me like white on rice- I’m disgusted. He thinks it might be a good time to squeeze back in. I think it’s highly disrespectful and pretty insulting to me. I know people do that- the rebound thing- but if you’re crawling away from the battlefield of one relationship, why would you hop into the trenches of another? That doesn’t make any sense to me, and it’s the furthest thing from my mind. (And heart.) I think I’ll be alone for a very long time. I’m a one man woman, and I think it’s necessary to experience the pain after a breakup. It tells me that the love I knew was real and that’s why it hurts so much. My friends don’t know what to say to comfort me, and that’s ok. There’s only so much another human being can offer in the way of companionship and support. If it weren’t for my love, relationship, and friendship with Jesus- I would absolutely crumble and die. I have no doubt. I’m not enough to keep myself going- I think of Sylvia Plath- and can understand how a broken heart could make her stick her head in an oven and forget to live. She couldn’t bear to lose her man to another woman. But Sylvia Plath said when she was just a child, “I’ll never talk to God again.” And I suppose she didn’t. So, she killed herself. I think she should have talked to God.
That’s where she and I differ. I love life, and as painful as it is to feel your heart being ripped from your chest, I do have a very close relationship with Jesus. We talk, commune, and just have a good time together. When I think about His love, and how He’s able to reach into every tiny place in my heart- I can’t be angry or sad for long. I smile, and know I’m loved. He washes away every awful feeling, and the bitter tears become bittersweet. They eventually become joyful, and I become like a child again, marveling at the beauty of God’s creation: I rise above the pain.
I’ve gone and talked myself right out of my misery again, and feel a half-smile creeping across my face.
Oh heart, you’re going to make it…
50 MM/manual/ISO 3200/natural lighting/Squire Boone Caverns/3.28.13
50 MM/manual/shot in monochrome/natural lighting
A man told me today that my goat belongs in a magazine.
I’ll take that as a compliment. :0)
Trying to focus manually while your target is moving constantly isn’t an easy task. But I love the way manual shooting paints dreamy bohek (heavy blurring) into the frame, such as the fence seen in the foreground. All-manual focussing and exposure (shutter speed/aperture/ISO/WB, etc.) has a certain quality and look to it that’s not easily replicated. I mean, it can be, but then it has the shopped look to it. (Photoshopped.) I’m hopelessly in love still with monochromatic images and especially with shooting IN monochrome.
Colour’s alright too. But nothing makes me as happy as shooting in black and white- all manual- using only natural lighting. My itch has been scratched.
Back to schoolwork…
Squire Boone Caverns
My neice, camouflaged against the background/study in mood.
Squire Boone Caverns
50 MM/manual/shot in monochrome
She said, “Yes.”
Based on a true story.
Van Gogh inspired.
Stress Level: Blowing Gaskets
Today has been an unusually stressful day. I’ve been working on my new art site, which I won’t reveal until it’s completely finished. It’s definitely in its embryonic stages. I have so much school work to catch up on and we’re financially strapped, as usual. Some of my photography art acquaintances have Donate to PayPal tabs up on their sites and many are actually receiving donations. I can’t bring myself to do that. I will work hard to sell my art work instead; that means pounding the virtual pavement and hobnobbing with the elite in the art world. Nothing to complain about, I assure you. But work is work, and I’m so limited on time these days. To put it simply, school is eating me up alive. Research, essays, and reports: my head feels like it’s in a pressure cooker, or an olive that is being slowly squeezed of its precious substances. The arachnoid cyst on my brain stem is acting up again and the pain is relentless and intense, but it doesn’t slow me down- it should.
It’s snowing outside- March snow. I should be taking a Psychology exam but I’m going to pop an Ambien and call it a night. It’s 1:00 a.m.
I just needed to write something.
I should cry.
From today’s test run:
J and I took the new camera out for a spin. We went to one of our favourite hangouts- the abandoned leather factory in a neighboring city. Just as I’d predicted, the kit lens was pretty much useless. I stuck with my 50 MM for most of the day. (I like the way it mimics film with added depth.)
I’m not sure there aren’t bodies in there somewhere…
Josh, checking his camera settings (and yes, that’s actually the Canon G3- long considered a dinosaur. Still a great cam for a P&S).
We had to be quick in there. J led as I followed:
There were all sorts of goodies in there. 🙂
J shoots blindly into the dark- 6 second long exposure.
And of course, our trip just wouldn’t have been a typical trip without a visit from our local police!
That’s right. Drive away, sir…
Everything was frozen solid today.
J didn’t seem to mind. The concrete was so slick he could skate easily. We always have a great time. 🙂 .
Taken earlier in the day. Those pants are just wrong.
My favourite from today- the outside of the abandoned leather factory. (Semi HDR)
The New Toy has Arrived!
I’ve been shooting with a crappy 4 MP camera for so long that I’d forgotten what a DSLR was like! Although I’m sure I ordered the 60 D (quite sure of it), I received the 600D- the T3i. It’s a slight step down- very slight- and the customer service was a total nightmare (42nd street photo in New York), I’m happy with the quality of the T3i and it’s not worth the hassle to return it and haggle with the (very rude) owner. He asked how I was doing, and I let him know that I had a blazing migraine. Instead of making the call brief, he went on to tell me that he’d received three parking tickets that morning and so he too “had a migraine”. Not funny! He then went on to try and upsell everything. Pretty fricking tacky.
He told me that I’d ordered the wrong speed memory card, which I clearly hadn’t- I ordered exactly what I wanted, and he continued trying to upsell the order, saying, “Alright, but when the memory card doesn’t work…yada yada yada..” Are you serious?! He also neglected to send me a confirmation email so there was no way to dispute or confirm the exact order. Nice.
I received the camera today, and just as I imagined, the memory card worked perfectly, etc. He was a real piece of work, and I’m quite sure I’ll never order anything from him again.
Apart from all of that, I’m tickled to be shooting with an 18 MP. cam. 🙂
Canon Rebel Xti/50 MM 1.8 II/manual/self port.
More photos later. I’m heading out to take this puppy for a spin!
New Camera on its Way
I remember last year, having to sell my whole rig to pay the rent and buy groceries.
Canon Rebel XSI
Lensbaby Composer Pro w/ Double Glass OpticsZ
Lensbaby + Sweet optic 35
(kit) 18-55 MM/75-300
50 MM 1.8 II (prime)
Lens reversal adapter/coupling ring
Extra batteries + charger/neck strap etc. etc.
It broke my heart to have to do that, but considering it allowed me to take care of my family through some very difficult times, I don’t regret the decision and would do it again if I had to. During all of 2012 I’ve shot with a 4 MP Canon Power shot, and for a serious “artographer” as myself, that has been difficult.
I’ve recently received the remains of my Financial Aid for school, and after paying (the school) back $1,380, my mom $500- brother $500- along with a few more chunks of hundreds here and there (bills, etc.) I had just enough left over to order another DSLR: Canon EOS 60D 18 MP. After shooting all year with a 4 MP- I cannot wait to have an actual DSLR in my hands again!
I ordered one that came with the kit (18-55 standard lens) which pretty much sucks as a lens- but, with a bit of experience and know-how (of which both I possess) you can pull off some pretty good shots with one. I’d be a fool to not order a 50 MM 1.8 II prime lens- it’s $100 brand new, which is pennies compared to other lenses, but the 50 MM makes an excellent portrait lens with considerably good bokeh. For those that may be reading this that have no idea what bokeh means, it’s a Japanese word that actually means “senile” or mentally foggy. Photographically, it translates as the super blurry parts of an image, apart from the focal point or subject, and it’s usually in the BG/background, but there is also what I call “reverse bokeh”, and that’s when you have a sharp focal point with a super-blurred FG/foreground.
Another attractive feature the 50 MM offers is that it’s a fixed focal length- there’s no zooming to be had. That means, if you want to get a close-up shot of your subject or subjects, you have to actually walk up to them. The 50 MM captures a field that equate to a 35 MM and it’s the closest thing to capturing a scene that your eye actually sees. You can’t go wrong with a 50 MM- ever- and it’s a great lens to take on trips, etc. because although it captures a subject beautifully regarding macros, it also makes an excellent landscape lens- many people don’t know that.
Here are two examples below, both taken with a 50 MM 1.8 II:
Sketch, one of the many cats we’ve owned over the years:
The Longest Dream (Perrin Park/Indiana)
Not too shabby for a $100 lens. Some of my favourite lenses are the Lensbaby Composer Pro (double glass ops), Sigma 17-70 (great walk around lens- it’s a wide angle on one end and a macro on the other- excellent lens), Sigma 10-20 (super wide) , and there are others, but the 50 MM prime remains at the top of any lens I’ve ever used. This lens is an absolute must have for any advanced amateur and pro, for that matter.
I should be receiving my goodies in the mail within the next week. I’ve spent the last 8 years developing my own unique style, a style that’s recognizable to most of the people who know my work, and I’m considering posting a few tutorials in the areas of layering, mastering your lighting (in camera- and in post processing) and developing a trademark style that is unique to your personal preferences. I’ve had many requests over the years but have just been so busy- hopefully I can do that sometime soon. (We’ll see.)
It’s another busy day and I’ll be filling mine with housecleaning, lots of school work and supper to cook.