At Last

It’s Your Color, originally uploaded by Mac Girl.

So Leda and I have been trying to get together for coffee for… oh, about 2 months now. One or both of us has had to reschedule almost every time, with the one exception being the time last month when we were both able to make it but we both forgot.

Yeah, you read that right. Sad, isn’t it?

So between pleading with The Man to remind me, setting my Google Calendar to email me twice in the days leading up to the appointment, emailing Leda to remind her so that if I forgot she might remember and remind me, and configuring my phone to beep me awake early enough to make it by 9am (no small feat on my day off!) we finally got together last Thursday. *sigh*

It was so worth it.

We haven’t had a good chat together in a long time and we managed to catch up on just about everything AND drink some really great coffee to boot! The grande cup pictured contains Starbuck’s Salted Caramel Signature Hot Chocolate and oh – my – GAWD is that stuff good! Have you ever had one of those little Christmas tree pretzels that’s dipped in chocolate? This is the exact same flavor only in a warm, melty liquid form. GLORIOUS! I highly recommend that you partake at your earliest convenience.

New Year, New Rules!

I hope you all had a safe and fun New Year’s Eve!

And by “safe and fun” I simply mean that you had a blast and no one was injured. Beyond that, I don’t want to know. 🙂

But now it’s Tuesday, January 1, 2008. What to do?

Tradition requires that we resolve to make changes – hopefully for the better – in the new year. There only has to be one, and it doesn’t have to be big. Resolving to do something simple like cracking a genuinely friendly smile every time the mail man hands you a big wad of bills is every bit as noble a cause as resolving to lose 50 pounds and run a marathon… and quite a bit safer! Your mailman will like it too!

There are three areas of my life that I want to concentrate on this year, resolution-wise. Personal life, work life, and photography.

Photography is a no-brainer this year. I’m a regular reader of Photojojo and they’ve been kind enough to list my resolutions for me in today’s article 19 New Year’s Photo Resolutions — Goodbye 2007, Hello Two Thousand and Awesome! I’m not resolving to do ALL of these things, of course. I’m only human. That said, the 365 thing dovetails nicely with the new GRCC 365 Day Challenge group that I’ve just joined. That will help with the “practice, practice, practice” resolution as well – I know I’ll be clicking the shutter at least 366 times this year. I want to learn more too, but I can’t get into classes until I get a job… which brings me to my Professional resolutions…

Professional resolutions: 1. Get a job! 🙂

Personally? I’ve been toying with the idea of reading a book per month for some time now. I know that doesn’t sound like a lot, but I go through great empty expanses of time where I don’t read (books) because I let other things get in the way. I resolve to take the time this year. To paraphrase Heinlein: have library card, will read!  (Right, Jim?)

This Is Your Brain On Books

That’s it.  It doesn’t seem like much written down, but it’s not going to be easy.  After all, we don’t face every day with the rampant optimism that pours from our souls on New Year’s Day, do we?

Ok, your turn.  What do you resolve?  Or don’t you resolve at all?  How about this – just resolve to leave a comment to this post…  🙂

Have You Hugged Your Glass Today?

Have You Hugged Your Glass Today?

Originally uploaded by Mac Girl

So I’ve got the whole portrait lighting thing down – though I don’t actually own the proper equipment yet – and I’m finding that my portrait challenge is posing.

Terry here isn’t so difficult. He is, if you’ll excuse the phrase, a camera whore. Like most photographers he’s always looking forward to the next gear purchase. UNlike most photographers he’s just as happy about doing his thing in front of the lens as he is behind it.

Easy pose option — “Terry, show me just how much you “love” your equipment!” *snap!* 🙂

But what if you need to pose someone that you don’t know? That’s something that I need to work out this week because I’ve got some student portraits coming up on the weekend. As usual I’ll be turning to Flickr for inspiration.

On a side note – I got tired of having a billion blogs on Blogger so I moved them all to this blog on WordPress. They make it really easy to suck posts and comments right off of your old blog, and the interface is INFINITELY more slick-looking (though Blogger still corners the market in great sidebar widgets and customizability – is that even a word?). So Passing Obsessions, Pakeha In Paradise, and Ubiquitous Lens Blog posts are all here now in this one, much more attractive spot.

Have a great week!


Originally uploaded by Mac Girl.

An image captured on the long road from cradle to adulthood. A child held in his father’s arms for a fleeting moment – and even now he is reaching beyond to discover the world and find himself.

There’s no way you can plan a shot like this, and it drives me crazy.

While some people will say that I go around with a camera stuck to my face (some have even alluded to the fact that I’d make a great Borg photographer) it’s simply not true. But it’s nearly impossible to get a shot like this without doing just that.

Still, when I look at this photo I want more of them, and somehow the Borg idea doesn’t seem quite so bad…

Looking Forward

B Side
Originally uploaded by Mac Girl.

I’ve been a slacker around here of late. Putting all of my time in with nephew’s soccer games, work, GRAMUG stuff, and WaddaYaGot.

I entered some pics in the local art festival this year and all four were rejected. Not a huge surprise as I’m new to this whole competition thing and didn’t really know what I was doing. I felt better about it after this weekend when The Man and I stopped at the old Art Museum to see the accepted entries.

It wasn’t so much of a “Hey, my shots were better than THAT!” thing – because in 95% of the cases I was absotively blown away by what I saw there. No, what made me feel better and gave me closure was the note that the judge left displayed next to the exhibit. He went into great detail about the general things that turned him away from pieces that otherwise would have made the cut. Things like matting and framing quality, image quality, print quality, etc.

Now I KNOW that my print quality was excellent. ProLab Express has never let me down, they do amazing work and they make my stuff look stunning. No, I’m convinced that it was the matting and framing. I did all of the work myself (with The Man’s generous help) using off-the-shelf goods. They looked nice enough for a wall in a home, but they weren’t what I would call “competition grade” jobs. They didn’t hold a candle to the mat and frame work that I saw in the exhibit.

Next year I’ll know better….

Time Flies

Time Flies
Originally uploaded by Mac Girl.

You wouldn’t know it, but I’ve been blogging like crazy lately. Yep, me!

See, I always start blogs and go like gangbusters for a while, then I get busy with other things and the posts start getting old. Nothing new happens for days, sometimes weeks. I feel bad because I haven’t blogged and I want to make up for it with something great, but then I get distracted looking for something great and… well, you get the idea.

This post is a perfect illustration of that situation.

What to do? What to do?

Well, I have brilliant friends and that fact saves my hiney on a regular basis, let me tell ya! In this case the brilliant friend was Jim (he fills that role on a regular basis!)

You see, Jim’s been having the same problem over at Different Perspectacles. A couple of weeks ago he was mulling that very problem (reportedly on the toilet at 3am – I didn’t ask!) and thought that maybe a sort of blogging buddy system would work better.

He suggested, I listened, we weighed the pros and cons for all of about 30 seconds, and was born.

So for now, for the foreseeable future, you’ll find me over at giving it my all.

Stop by. Try it out. Watch. Read. Laugh. Comment! Subscribe to the RSS feed.

It won’t be home until you’re there too….


Fizzy Lifting Drinks

Fizzy Lifting Drinks
Originally uploaded by Mac Girl.

I know that I’ve sort of abandoned the blog. That’s no ones fault by my own. By the middle of our trip I realized that I was spending far too much time messing about with my photos and not enough time relaxing, and that’s bad. So I put the photos and the blog on hold. But now we’re back and I have time… finally! Stay tuned, there’s more to come.

We now return you to your regularly-scheduled travel blog…..

One of the [many, many] things that I love about New Zealand is their choice of beverage. Everywhere we went Coke was on the menu. I think we saw a few Pepsi bottles once and by then it shocked us a bit. We hadn’t seen Pepsi in days by then and the blue bottles stuck out like a sore thumb.

This explains why, when the stewardess on the Air New Zealand plane that took us from Sydney to Wellington asked what I wanted to drink and I said “Pop, please!” she gave me the blankest look that I’ve seen in a long time. It’s “Coke.” That’s all. That’s what you ask for. “Coke” means “pop” because its often the only cola on the menu, and that’s true almost everywhere.

I couldn’t be happier! I had litres of it while I was there, and got lots of photos of my favorite beverage in bottles, in glasses, and on signs.