Cultivating a Photographer’s Eye

Hello, dears!

I often have people ask me how they can improve they’re photography or if I have any tips for them. So today I thought I’d make a post on one very important tip that often gets overlooked.

It goes along with two other big photography tips:

  • Invest in good equipment.
  • Learn how to use it well.
  • Cultivate a photographer’s eye.

There are plenty of blog posts and articles about the first two, but I haven’t seen many or perhaps any about the third, so I thought I’d address that point today. 🙂

Continue reading

Photography Challenge {My Entries}

Hello, dears!

A little while ago, the marvelous Amanda came up with a 12-day photography challenge for her photographer friends and herself. I was one of the aforementioned, and it was a lot of fun! Several of us contributed prompts and then posted our photos from each day on a Google Doc, so all the other participants could see them as well. I enjoyed intentionally creating photos instead of just snapping a picture of whatever was already there, like I usually do.

So, as you might guess, today I’ll be showing you the photos I took for this challenge! Continue reading

Falling Again

Heh heh. Aren’t my puns great? *Sigh* Yes, I know they’re awful. ANYWAY, I’m super excited to show you guys these fall pictures! I’ve been saving them up for a while now and I finally get to post them. 🙂

First I want to show you our beautiful ombre maple tree. 😀 Well actually the leaves are all fallen from it now, but this is how it used to look. Isn’t it lovely?

DSC_2463 (853x1280)

One of the other maples beside our lane was absolutely gorgeous this year! Especially with the sun shining through the leaves… ah, it was beautiful.

DSC_3356 (853x1280)

I LOVE these pumpkin pictures! 😀

DSC_3338 (853x1280)

fall 4

And back to the tree again. This bokeh… OH MY GOODNESS! ♥

DSC_3328 (1280x853)DSC_3326 (1280x853)DSC_3324 (1280x853)

DSC_3317 (853x1280)

I really like the composition of the next one. (Wow, I’m doing a lot of portrait, vertical photos aren’t I? Here’s a question: Should I make them smaller so you can see them without scrolling, or do you like them full size as they are?)

DSC_3309 (853x1280)DSC_3306 (1280x853)DSC_3250 (1280x853)

Leaves can make even dusty black trucks pretty. 🙂

DSC_3239 (1280x853)

I promise I didn’t put the leaf there. Isn’t the position so neat and funny?

DSC_3236 (1280x853)

And of course we musn’t forget the classic holding-a-leaf-up picture, am I right?

DSC_3233 (1280x853)

Ooh, and then I got several adorable pictures of Maggie looking all dejected. 😛

DSC_3222 (1280x853)DSC_3218 (1280x853)

HA HA Maggie looks like she’s havng an intent conversation with a leaf or something and the leaf just said something shocking. XD What would you caption this photo? (No winners this time – just for fun. 😉 )

DSC_3214 (1280x853)

DSC_3219 (1280x853)

DSC_3220 (1280x853)

Here’s a fun fall photography prompt: try to find fall leaves in a half-rainbow, from red to green. Arrange them in an ombre pattern and snap away! 🙂 I had a lot of fun with this, but it also took FOREVER to collect the leaves.

DSC_3191 (1280x853)

fall 2

DSC_3207 (1280x853)DSC_3206 (1280x853)DSC_3190 (1280x853)

Huh, what do you know. I’m wearing the same skirt as in this post. (I promise I don’t wear it every Sunday. XD )

DSC_3183 (1280x853)DSC_3182 (1280x853)DSC_3171 (1280x853)

I rather like this edit.

fall 6.jpg

DSC_3085 (853x1280)

And lastly, just a few edited photos. I spent SUCH a long time trying to capture a leaf falling. XD

fall 1fall 3

And we end with a photo featuring a picturesque (?) four-wheeler? Okay…

fall 5

Alright, you got to the end. *applause* Actually, you didn’t. Let me talk for a bit first.
Ahem. Some people mentioned in the survey that they don’t love scrolling through so many pictures in my photography posts, and I definitely understand that. I always try to cram a ton in. XD So I shall attempt to be a little more picky and not burden you with so many at once. What do you think? More photos, which might contain some less quality photos, or less photos, but more quality ones?
Also it seems like I kind of failed my goal with this post, but let me tell you, I was much more selective than normal. IT WAS SO HARD. THERE ARE SO MANY PICTURES TO SORT THROUGH.
Thank you guys so, so much for taking my survey, by the way! I can’t please everyone nor am I going to try, but it really is helpful to hear your thoughts. ♥ Thus, my goals are…
  1. Condense my photography posts a little. And post more people and pet photography rather than mostly random nature photos like I just did.
  2. Keep my header but maybe change the theme and clean up the sidebar. (Question: do you ever use the category pictures on my sidebar? If not, I’ll just delete them.)
  3. Make more art posts and start up with Art Lab again! The thing is, it’s a little hard to do a collab art blog with just me posting… heh heh. I want to get that figured out too. Anyway, I already have a fun Art Lab post in mind which I will hopefully post maybe Saturday or Sunday.
  4. Make featured images for all my posts, not just some, for more cohesiveness.
Okay, I am FINALLY done with this post. Thank you so much for bearing with me, dears, and listening to my many questions! Do you have a favorite photo? What do you think of my four goals?
Have a lovely fall day!
***Allison***

P. S. GUYS. I JUST REALIZED SOMETHING ELSE. If you type this: :{), it looks like an emoji with a mustache. WHY IS THAT NOT A THING? Oh, right. Probably because it’s completely useless. True. BUT STILL. Okay, I’m actually done now.

A Little Winter Walk

Winter is so drab and gray and cold that it’s a challenge sometimes to find good photo opportunities. But there is ALWAYS something to take a picture of, no matter where you are. It’s a lot of fun to go out on a “treasure hunt” of sorts with your camera and see what you can find outside: blades of grass, raindrops, berries – even dead leaves or thorns can make interesting pictures!

When you look through the lens of a camera, anything is beautiful. ♥

So anyway, that’s what I did. A few days ago I was feeding the bunnies after a rain, and I noticed the raindrops all over everything… so out popped my camera! XD By now a lot of you know how much I love dewdrops and raindrops. They’re so perfectly beautiful, how can I resist? 😀

dsc_0937-1280x853

dsc_0938-1280x853
I must have had my camera set on slow shutter speed – you can see the rain in the background!

dsc_0939-1280x853dsc_0941-1280x853

dsc_0942-1280x853
Isn’t this pretty? It’s almost abstract. (It’s willow branches, in case you were wondering. ;))

dsc_0947-1280x853dsc_0950-1280x853dsc_0952-1280x853dsc_0955-1280x853

dsc_0956-1280x853
I love this photo! I didn’t edit it, even though it looks that way. I found out that when I adjust my camera’s settings to faster shutter speed, lower ISO, higher f-stop, or a combination, the picture gets darker. I still have so much to learn about my dSLR, but I’m getting there!

 

I also took some pictures the other day when we went for a nature walk. At first it seemed like there was nothing interesting around, but what did I tell you? There’s always something! 😀 (By the way, I did a similar photoshoot/”treasure hunt” thingy here.)

dsc_0966-1280x853
See what I mean about thorns making an interesting picture? 😉

dsc_0967-1280x853
I don’t know what this plant is called, but it’s so FLUFFY!

dsc_0968-1280x853dsc_0971-1280x853

dsc_0973-1280x853
Ahh, I love these reflection pictures! It reminds me of a double-exposure.

dsc_0976-1280x853

dsc_0977-1280x853

dsc_0983-1280x853

dsc_0986-1280x853
I really, really like this one too. My friend gave me the idea when she took a picture of her little sister holding an acorn cap with water in it. ♥ the reflections.

dsc_0992-1280x853dsc_0994-1280x853

dsc_0998-1280x853
Ivy is so pretty, don’t you think? (As long as it’s not poison ivy. XD But actually poison ivy can be pretty too…)

dsc_1000-1280x853

dsc_1003-1280x853
I have no clue what these berries are except pretty. XD

 

What do you guys like to take pictures of in the winter? (Well besides snow. Ooh, which reminds me – it’s supposed to snow a tiny bit here tomorrow!)

What was your favorite picture?

Have a warm and cozy day! ♥

***Allison***

Photography Prompt #2

Hey, guys! Clara alerted me to the very important fact that this is National Photography Day. Of course I had to do something for such a day. So instead of a planned recipe post (which I think you’re going to like, girls and book lovers), I’m going to do a photography prompt to get your creative juices flowing. If you have a camera, this is the day to use it! XD

Photography Prompt 2

Here is that bubble picture that I’ve put on my blog I-don’t-know-how-many-times. XD

bubbles (1280x960)
Look at these reflections! I’ve never quite figured out what the reflections were…

-Allison(pond, geese) 014.JPG
I was so excited when I got this almost-perfect reflection of a Canadian goose at our pond.

 

 

Rural Rockingham (1280x960)
Water is a really fun reflective thing. Especially mountain lakes, or ponds at sunset.

 

2014-8-4-Allison 041 (1280x960).jpg
This is a picture of my Dad’s eye. You can see the reflection of my camera lens and finger poised to click the button. You can even see the scene from our window! (I think there’s the cornfield and the leaves of a walnut tree.)

 

-Allison(garden game) 045 (1280x960)
I just took this one recently. You can see a distorted reflection of our house and me sitting awkwardly on the steps holding the sprinkler between my knees. XD

mallory 3 (1280x960)
I really love this one! I took this picture of my friend on our Amelia Island vacation. I edited it (if you haven’t noticed) to make her hair and the reflection in the sunglasses stand out.

 

Which was your favorite reflections photo? Are you going to “celebrate” National Photography Day? Do you think you’ll use this prompt?

***Allison***

P. S. The baby bunnies are one week old! They are also THE CUTEST THINGS THAT EVER LIVED OH MY GOODNESS HELP! Don’t worry, I’ve been taking lots of pictures. 😉

P. P. S. You only have two days left to do the garden guessing game!

Photography Prompt #1

Hello again, dear readers! 😀 Today I give you a little photography prompt I made up to get your photo-creativity up and running! It’s super simple, but very rewarding and relaxing.

photography prompt 1 (1280x960)

Here are the photos I took using the prompt. I just laid down in the grass and snapped away! It was really fun.

The whole reason I went out there in the first place was to take pictures of this beautiful tiger swallowtail.

-Allison(Casey) 001 (1280x960)-Allison(Casey) 005 (1280x960)-Allison(Casey) 004 (1280x960)-Allison(Casey) 003 (1280x960)-Allison(Casey) 002 (1280x960)

Then of course I took pictures of the cute wittle pink flowers,

-Allison(Casey) 017 (1280x960)-Allison(Casey) 013 (1280x960)

And a few creepy-crawlies,

-Allison(Casey) 008 (1280x960)

-Allison(Casey) 011 (1024x768)
Pill bugs (or roly-polies) look like armadillo bugs up close!

-Allison(Casey) 016 (1280x960)

 

And boring ol’ lawn which is actually interesting.

-Allison(Casey) 018 (1280x960)
I messed with the exposure on my camera to get this really neat evening light look.

-Allison(Casey) 019 (1280x960)

 

Guys, mulch and old walnuts can look interesting too.

-Allison(Casey) 021 (1280x960)-Allison(Casey) 015 (1280x960)

And lastly but not leastly… this! XD Yes, you can use your zoom as long as you don’t move your legs. 😀

-Allison(Casey) 020 (1280x960)

I used this idea several months ago too. It was winter, and I just sat down in a plain patch of bare field, but I think some of the photos turned out pretty well. Have a look!

This is the boring patch of ground I took pictures on. Blah, right?

-Allison(cookies, island) 031 (1280x960)

Well…

-Allison(cookies, island) 019 (1280x960)-Allison(cookies, island) 032 (1280x960)-Allison(cookies, island) 030 (1280x960)-Allison(cookies, island) 029 (1280x960)-Allison(cookies, island) 028 (1280x960)

-Allison(cookies, island) 027 (1280x960)
I really like this picture for some reason

-Allison(cookies, island) 026 (1280x960)
Even dirt can look pretty!

-Allison(cookies, island) 025 (1280x960)-Allison(cookies, island) 023 (1280x960)-Allison(cookies, island) 022 (1280x960)

Not so boring after all, right? That’s why this is fun. You get to look at all the little details you normally miss. And you don’t have to just take pictures – you could take your sketchbook or just look.

Do you think you’ll use this prompt? Would you like to see more photography prompts?

***Allison***

P. S. I’m working on my birthday stuff post, but it may take me a while because of all the reviews I’m doing!