Monday, December 22, 2014

Hello

This is just a short post to say hello :-)

I'll be back with a better post in a day or two about what I've been up to with my book and stuff like that. I just wanted to say hello.

Have a great day!

How Far Will You Go To Avoid the Doorknob?

Cleanliness is very important around the home and this is especially true during the winter cold and flu season. I try to do my best to keep surfaces like countertops and tables wiped down and I wipe over the doorknobs too just to be safe. When I'm really on the ball I try to keep my laptop cleaned off. Lol. I forget about my laptop sometimes to be perfectly frank. In the end though, it's all about staying healthy.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Book Spotlight: A Respect for Light: The Latin American Photographs 1974-2008

I love photography and when I get the chance to see the work of excellent photographers it's always a special treat. In A Respect for Light: The Latin American Photographs 1974-2008 by Mario Algaze, published by Glitterati Incorporated, http://glitteratiincorporated.com , the legendary photographer's work through the years is highlighted. It's a major retrospective of his work and it's a delight to gaze upon each photograph.

Mario Algaze
Photograph © Javier Silva

Cover: Sendero iluminado, Cuzco, Perú, 2002

As I said in the beginning, I enjoy photography very much and love all varieties, but I have a special appreciation for a beautiful black and white photograph. There's just something so moving about how the light and shadow play upon each other to create something of beauty. It's very fitting that Algaze's book title plays upon this element of the light in his work as the examples found in his book are stunning. There is a cinematic quality to his work and he is well-aware of this himself. In the foreword by Vince Aletti, Algaze is quoted as saying:

"I am a film director wannabe, a hibernating Truffaut, wanting to come out one day."
(From A Respect for Light: The Latin American Photographs 1974-2008 by Mario Algaze, published by Glitterati Incorporated,

He also says:

"The most important ingredient in my photographs, is a very early morning light, a magical light, which on most days only allows you about an hour to work. There's a certain quality before 9:30 in the morning, where light hits in a forty-five-degree and there are long shadows and soft light."
(From A Respect for Light: The Latin American Photographs 1974-2008 by Mario Algaze, published by Glitterati Incorporated,

La movida, Cartagena, Colombia, 1987

El principe del solar, Ciudad de Panamá, 1994

As I looked at each photograph I picked up on what he says about the light. Many of the images caused me to think of times when I've been out walking early in the morning and how the light is so pristine at that time of the day. There is a crispness to the light in the morning which is not there as the sun gets higher in the sky later in the day. When the sunlight is bright, it engulfs everything and photographs look very different. Algaze's use of shadow and light is extraordinary.

Salón de té, Montevideo, Uruguay, 1993

Plaza Mayor, Madrid, España, 1981

Salón de billar, Boquete, Panamá, 1994

Desaparecidos, Buenos Aires, Argentina, 1984

This book would be a great Christmas gift for anyone that loves photography...whether you get it for someone else or for yourself. It's an intriguing book to return to again and again.

A Respect for Light: The Latin American Photographs 1974-2008 can be purchased here.


*Disclosure: I was sent a copy of this book for review. All opinions are mine

Friday, December 12, 2014

Christmas Product Spotlight: Driving Test Success Gift Card

I've been living in England for a few years now and I've become quite acclimated to life here for the most part. I go about life day-to-day basically as I would back home in Georgia and just get on with living. However, there's one thing in particular that I did back home that I have yet to do here. I've never driven a car here because:

1) I'm used to driving an automatic car
2) I don't have a driver's license in the UK

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Book Spotlight: Mister Finch: Living in a Fairytale World

Creativity is an amazing thing and it comes in a variety of different forms. Some people express their creativity in bold ways and some show theirs in quieter ways, but we all can express ourselves. Then there are those people who express themselves in ways that make you think that they were surely gifted with an extraordinary skill to create beautiful things.

Author & Textile Artist - Mister Finch


One of those creatively gifted people has to be Mister Finch, a wonderful textile artist who lives in Yorkshire, England. His debut book, Mister Finch: Living in a Fairytale World, published by Glitterati Incorporated, is a wonderfully whimsical trip through an enchanted world of bumblebees, toadstools, hares, and so much more.

Mister Finch: Living in a Fairytale World by Mister Finch copyright© 2014, 
 published by Glitterati Incorporated www.GlitteratiIncorporated.com

This amazing book showcases the fantastic one-of-a-kind creatures that Mr. Finch creates in his Yorkshire studio. He draws his greatest inspiration from nature and British folklore and deftly incorporates fairytale elements into his work which creates this magical world where storybook characters come to life.

From Mister Finch: Living in a Fairytale World by Mister Finch copyright© 2014,  
published by Glitterati Incorporated www.GlitteratiIncorporated.com

Throughout this delightful book, readers are treated with a glimpse into Mister Finch's wonderful studio. The vibrant photographs give us a look at his tools that he uses to create his whimsical creatures. There are brightly colored pins, buttons, and fabrics that are the tools of his trade for his sewing, but they take on a beautifully artistic aura with the turn of each page. I found myself being enthralled by the creative space which Mister Finch has created for himself. After seeing the pieces that go into making each of his lovely creatures I was even more impressed with how he pulls it all together. There is a beautiful charm to the various hares, toadstools, moths, and all of the other creatures that he creates with such unique artistic flair.

From Mister Finch: Living in a Fairytale World by Mister Finch copyright© 2014, 
 published by Glitterati Incorporated www.GlitteratiIncorporated.com

Also throughout the book, Mister Finch gives us readers an insight into the inspiration behind his work. I love this quote from the book because I think that it does a very good job of describing what he wants to achieve with his work.

From Mister Finch: Living in a Fairytale World by Mister Finch copyright© 2014, 
 published by Glitterati Incorporated www.GlitteratiIncorporated.com

He writes:


" I'm fascinated by wanting to create things that look like they come from somewhere else; something that has been unearthed in an attic or found in a secret hidden drawer. I want to inject a bit of old-fashioned magic back into the world. "
  From Mister Finch: Living in a Fairytale World by Mister Finch copyright© 2014, 
 published by Glitterati Incorporated www.GlitteratiIncorporated.com
 

From Mister Finch: Living in a Fairytale World by Mister Finch copyright© 2014,  
published by Glitterati Incorporated www.GlitteratiIncorporated.com

Mister Finch describes so perfectly the feeling that I came away with after reading this book. I would say that he has definitely created this other world quality with his work and I'm glad that he's bringing it into our world.

 Mister Finch: Living in a Fairytale World can be purchased here.


*Disclosure: I was sent a copy of this book for review. All opinions are mine.

Friday, December 05, 2014

Recharging



So this is another one of my Friday Photoshop things. It's a good way to unwind at the end of the week and this week especially with all of the harsh news from back home, we all need a little bit of this. No, we don't all need Photoshop in our lives, but we need something to give our minds a rest just for a minute. Everyone has their way of choice...one of mine is Photoshop.

This photo above kind of sums up what I plan on doing this weekend for the most part. I love trees and even in the colder months when they're bare they still are beautiful to me. It's like they're taking a break and recharging until they sprout out with new leaves again in the springtime.

I won't be recharging and hibernating all the way until spring...nope, I have things to do, mainly to finish writing my book and to keep blogging here along with many other things :-)  But for this weekend I plan on being quieter and more inward so that I can recharge and be ready to go forward with what needs to be done.

Back to this photo...it's a view of the tree behind my house. And as usual, I played around with the different effects on Photoshop and this is what emerged from my play.

I hope that everyone has a great weekend. Have a great time and be safe!

Thursday, December 04, 2014

Christmas Product Spotlight: Sugru

Christmas is only three weeks away from today. Wow! It's coming so quickly. As we head towards that day I've been slowly but surely getting my Christmas shopping done. It's always fun to have little extras or stocking fillers for the loved ones on your list. One of my favorite things that I've been introduced to this year is Sugru.

Sugru is the world's first mouldable glue which turns into rubber. It feels like play dough. It can be used to fix all kinds of things. I've written about this great product in an earlier post here.



Recently I've received a packet with a variety of colors that I didn't have before. So when I'm fixing up things around the house, I'll have even more colors to choose from!

Check out the video below to learn about the many things that you can fix with Sugru:



Also, throughout December, the folks at Sugru will be sharing 24 neat ideas for how Sugru can help make the most of your home during this festive season. Take a look here to find out about all the cool ideas...some are techy, some are crafty and some are just downright clever!


Disclosure: I was sent a sample of this product for review. All opinions are mine.

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

Visiting Bath Once Again


Today I thought that I'd share another one of my Instagram pics as I'm fond of doing now and then. I took this photo this past Friday in Royal Victoria Park in Bath. If you've visited me a few times here you'll know that I love going to Bath. It's probably my favorite place that I've visited here in England. I like it because the architecture is so beautiful and even though the traffic can be kind of a nightmare it's still calmer than London. I like London a lot too, but sometimes the noise can get to me. I love London for the museums, theatre, and Covent Garden, etc. It's a great place to visit, but when I want to be laid back a bit, Bath is my place :-)

Another great thing about Bath is that it's not that far away from where I live. It's in the next county, which is Somerset, but it's just over the border so it's easy to be there in a pretty short time. Also, the drive through the country in order to get there is so nice. I'm a country girl at heart...always have been and always will be :-)

I've been going to Bath for years, but this was my first time visiting Royal Victoria Park. I'm gonna have to go back when it's warmer, but getting to see it with some of the fall colors around was a treat. It was a nice way to spend the day after Thanksgiving.

Have a wonderful day!

Monday, December 01, 2014

Hello December

HELLO DECEMBER!

:-)


Standing Strong

As we start a new month and indeed the last month of 2014, I'm committed to standing strong. I do my best always to stand strong and live a good life, but in light of all that happened this past week with Ferguson, I feel the need to recommit myself. Like many, I'm disturbed by not just the case in Ferguson, but in the ever-growing list of others, such as twelve year old Tamir Rice, who are losing their lives at the hands of police. Some will bring up other statistics to deflect from the issue at hand. I am not here to debate any of it. There are many, many more eloquent writers who can analyze the whole thing much better than I can and the essays and articles are out there available for everyone to read. I've read dozens and I've learned so much or I've nodded my head because something has resonated with my own life experience.

I know that I'm late with this post, but this isn't a race. It's never too late to say how you feel even when you don't feel that you have the adequate words to describe your feelings. I'll just say this, the decision by the grand jury was a disappointment, but here's the thing. I'm gonna hold my head up and stand strong.

By standing strong I mean that I am going to live my life and do my part to help. I have no idea how, but I know that I'll find it. Being me and showing up as the best me that I can is a start. There is a lot of work to do, so showing up and being ready is where I will begin. My mind is in planning mode, so please forgive my vagueness. It's so cliche, but like many others I just want to help make things better.