Sunday, July 9, 2017

July 10 on 10: Annual Vacation in Raquette Lake

Time for my annual post about our trip to my home away from home: Raquette Lake, NY. About five years ago, Dave and I took a leap of faith and bought a house there even though we live 14 hours away in Indiana. We rent it out some over the summer and recently have a young couple renting for the winter season (which is helpful because we don't have to have it winterized and shut down in the winters). The rental income help a bit with offsetting the cost of the property, but I do not recommend properties as a money-making investment. Luckily, we did not buy the property to make money because we do intend to move there semi-permanently after we retire from our jobs, and it is a place we love. 

Keeping with tradition, our first hike was up Rocky--this is an easy 1/2 mile hike but the view is really quite amazing for such a short hike. 

Last fall, when I was out there (with Kim B :) ), I met a local photographer out in the field down by South Bay on Raquette Lake. He mentioned that he runs short workshops in the summer (sunrise or sunset workshops), so when I got to the area I stopped by his photo studio in Old Forge (check out  his work if you want: and arranged to meet up for a sunrise tour--for that I had to get up at 3:30 am, but it was worth it. 

Just the two of us went out  and he shot, too, so he did not charge me, but what a morning! The mist was perfect and he took me to a bunch of new places I had never been back on the snow mobile trails in Old Forge. (I don't think I'd try to go there myself yet because I am afraid I'd get lost back there).

 This year, there has been a lot of rain out there. Raquette Lake was higher than I ever remember seeing it. Also the streams and rivers were raging. They were fun to photograph.


The first week, we were out there, the weather was pretty rainy, but that did not stop us from getting out. Here is my brother and sister-in-law on top of Blue Mountain. Blue is the highest peak in the immediate area of Raquette Lake. We did not go on the best day because at the top, the view was completely shrouded with mist, but it is still a good memory.

The second week we were there, the weather turned pretty much perfect and our fun continued.

One day, a group of us went on a hike up to Peaked Mountain (this was one that I had never done before, but  now I think it might be my favorite hike in the area ... it took about an hour to get there, but it was well worth it). It follows a creek for much of the hike and then there is a short but pretty darn steep ascent to the top. The views are spectacular (and a little scary because it is another one of those summits that is basically just a ledge with a sheer drop down about 2500 feet).

Well, we are home in Indiana again, but I am looking forward to returning this fall.

This is part of the 10 on 10 blog circle. Please follow the circle to Kim Bajorek and see her post filled with the most beautiful portraits.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

May 10 on 10: Dandelions

Spring means lots of dandelions and dandelions are my favorite. I used to have a vegetable garden, but gave up on it after a couple of years, so when it started growing dandelions, I told my husband I was keeping them and he is forbidden from mowing or weed whacking them :)

So here are 10 pictures of dandelions and dandelion seeds for the May 10 on 10 blog circle.

Please follow the blog circle to the photographs of the talented Trini from Norway.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

April 10 on 10: Foggy Indiana Mornings

In Indiana, we had an exceptionally warm winter and back in February, we had a few balmy, foggy mornings. Although, I missed having snow during the winter, I did enjoy photographing on foggy mornings at a couple of local parks. 

The warm, humid weather also brought spider webs (a lot earlier than they should have been there), which were fun to photograph as well:

It is no surprise that the weather in Indiana has gone back and forth from cold (freezing or below) to quite warm  (mid 70s) this Spring, but now it looks like Spring is starting in full swing and summer is just around the corner. I have a feeling it will be a hot one.


This is part of the 10 on 10 blog circle. Please take a look at the next post in the circle from talented photographer Kristina Rust.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

March 10 on 10: Taking up Painting

Last fall, I was finding myself itching to try something new. I still love photography, but wanted to get into some other creative pursuit and, at first, I had toyed with the idea of starting to make metal sculptures because that was something I had never done before and it just seems cool, but the cost of entry into something like that is high and daunting and I don't know where I would put the welding equipment! Then I shifted to acrylic painting--much easier to try without a huge investment.

What I like is abstract, so I also figured I didn't really have to know how to draw (good thing, since i don't).

I have not done a lot of work yet and not too much that I am really, really pleased with but I am okay with some of them.

I have approached it without much structure at all. I just started and quickly realized how easy it is to mess up a painting . . . the difficult part is going too far which I keep doing . . . eventually, a painting just loses its way with too much touching and manipulation. But it is hard to know when to stop.

The good thing about acrylic paint, though, is it's easy to just cover over a canvas. I have done that a lot. Many of the canvases have 4 to 5 layers of false starts (or finishes).

I also found myself taking macro photographs of the paintings--sometimes panning over the painting or taking a close-up shot of a small section of the painting--and digitally manipulating it to get a result that I liked a lot better than the painting.


Here are two examples of one of the first pieces I did (neither exists as a painting any longer no because they were not worth saving). I panned over these and changed them up in post-processing (including adding texture layers) to make them look like this.

Here is one where the image started out as a macro photograph of a small section of the painting that I also manipulated heavily in Lightroom and Photoshop.

In this one there are several digital layers of different images of the painting to make it look like this. (Again, the painting is gone from the physical world).

The next six are ones that actually stayed as paintings and more or less looks like this in real life, but most have many, many layers underneath of something I did not like at all :)

And sometimes I like to take the color version and turn it black and white and then wonder if I should just do a black and white painting, but I have not tried that yet.

I don't know what I am doing really and I am fully aware of that. At this point, I cannot replicate any of my results--good or bad--but I think it is fun. There are times when I get frustrated because of my lack of knowledge and there are times when I just think I am being dumb because there is really no reason for me to paint. All I am doing is piling up finished (for now) paintings in my breezeway and I don't know what I am going to do with them. But sometimes I just have to take a deep breath and decide that if it is fun and I get messy hands, it is fine to keep painting--this doesn't HAVE to mean anything at all.


This is part of the 10 on 10 blog circle. Please follow the circle starting with Katrina Kennedy.

(Next month, I will get back to photographs).

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

November 10 on 10: Obviously, a Difficult Day . . .

I am struggling today as I know many are, so I just cannot say much.

Here are images from the last month: 

and a little light:

This is part of the 10 on 10 post, please follow the circle, starting with the lovely Kim. Her work is sure to inspire.