A good photographer is a constant observer. Out in nature, we have opportunities to watch and study a scene, from big, sweeping changes — like the sky at dusk — to the tiniest details, like the subtle bends in bare branches.
While shooting outdoors, look for natural lines that lead your eyes to different parts of the frame. Study the bend of a stream, or the curve of a petal. How can you use these lines in your composition? – Developing Your Eye II, Lesson 4: Leading Lines –
I spent time in the outdoors considering this lesson, struggling to see the lines around me. Then suddenly, there it was right in front of me! The patterns & colours of the lines led me to a place of marvel & wonderment. There is no place I’d rather be.
This is the song that has looped in my head as I contemplated nature in all its glory!
Running is a metaphor for how I want to tackle life: the odds may be against me, but I will try anyway.
I was chatting some years ago with a Runner Friend, back before I ran regularly. She was extolling the joys of running and my excuse: I am so short & stout (contrasting with her tall & lanky build), how on earth am I supposed to be running? She said soothingly to me that her running friends were of different sizes and physiques. I was somewhat mollified by our conversation, although somewhat incredulous.
I still wouldn’t consider myself a serious runner: I don’t run far, I don’t run long, I don’t compete. But I am serious about my running. I made a start when I was approaching 30 because I was struggling with the mortality of my life (my mid-life crisis came early). I figured if I was ever struck down by a debilitating illness, being healthy would be an advantage. I also thought the discipline of pushing myself one more step would be helpful if I ever needed to fight for my life.
Just about 20 years later, this was all called to test. The Hospitalisation and The Subsequent Rehabilitation called up all the fitness reserve and determination I had built up. Having to re-learn how to walk in the hospital on account of deteriorated muscles, and then rebuilding the stamina which pneumonia had depleted. The promise of running again became my life line.
It has been almost 9 months since I left the hospital. My runs are no longer frenetic goal-driven outings. I am enjoying my rambles and zen moments again. For peace of mind and a sense of freedom, there is no where I’d rather be than out on a run, wherever that takes me.
I am not so naive to think I that I can do this indefinitely; both my athletic parents have had to exchange their sporting passions for less vigorous cardiopulmonary, muscle-maintaining pursuits. But for as long as I can, I will hit that pavement.
The Feature Photo was taken in Bangkok on the Cycle/Pedestrian Overpass linking Lumpini & Benjakitti Parks in January 2018.
This post is written in response to my searching through my archives – something which I have decided to do once a month this year.
Younger Daughter wanted paint & breakfast in the Gardens. So, I entertained myself while she did her thing. I was sitting there, minding my own business, at the edge of Swan Lake, when this little guy started towards me. For a caterpillar, he moved alarmingly fast! Since I had this flower at my disposal, I put it in front of him, hoping to slow him down so I could get a shot in. He decided that the petal of the flower made a good breakfast, so I had a little time with him. Apparently, he is a Tussock Moth Caterpillar, with his tufts of fuzzy hair which makes him so adorable! Continue reading “Scale: Lesson 3 Experiment with Size”
As I walk past the fish pond at the Tanglin Gate of the Singapore Botanic Gardens heading for my morning run, I spot these lovely white flowers peeking above the water teeming with koi. I can’t resist stopping to snap a shot of such a cheerful bloom. What intended to be a quick stop turns out to be me squatting there for another 15 minutes, waiting for the koi to come around so I can catch one in the same frame as the lovely flowers. Continue reading “Of Fish and Abundance”
I am glad for this opportunity to revisit February as the month has whizzed by! My 30-Day Challenge was to encounter Beauty, whether it is as an Imaginative Creator or Awed Enthusiast. I feel like I didn’t mindfully do this as there was so much going on. So I am going to try again in March, to purposefully engage in Beauty, whether it is composing a photograph, or dreaming up new Blondie flavours, or jiggling to music, or being gobsmacked by a sculpture: Encounter with Beauty, Take 2.
On to the Highlights of February: we harvested our first tomato (Above photo) from our Balcony Garden: we were all thrilled to enjoy the fruits of Loving Husband & Older Daughter’s labours. There were a total of 5. We are awaiting 2 more which have since emerged.
It has also been a season of lights, as we enjoyed the Light to Night Festival in the Civic District, and the Lunar New Year.
Celebrating the Year of the Dog
Pineapple tarts are a must!
Lanterns to light up the trees!
Here are some of my Beauty-ful creations.
Whorls of Twirls: Quilled earrings
Canna lilies along the Rochor Canal
Fallen Frangipani in the Singapore Botanic Gardens
Twists & Turns: Quilled earrings
If you are inspired to join in, here are the guidelines for The Changing Seasons.
The Changing Seasons Version One (photographic):
Each month, post 5-20 photos in a gallery that you feel represent your month
Don’t use photos from your archive. Only new shots.
Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so that others can find them
This Butterfly Pea Flower, basking in the warmth of morning sun, was a pleasant discovery as I walked through the charming neighbourhood of Tiong Bahru.
Lesson 1 of Developing Your Eye Part 2, invites us to think about light. The word photography means “drawing with light” in Greek. I must admit that I have not paused to think of what I do with the camera as drawing. As I mull on this, however, I am tickled by how apropos it is. For this assignment, we are challenged to consider the direction & quality of light as we look through our cameras. Continue reading “Warmth: Lesson 1 Quality of Light”
I have been having a lot of fun making my breakfasts higher in protein, lower in refined flours & sugars. As pancakes are one of my favourite foods (and not just at breakfast time), it seemed like a good candidate to spend some time on. Here are some of my experiments to make a healthier, higher protein, naturally sweet meal. Continue reading “Fun with Healthier Pancakes”
I have enjoyed visiting & revisiting re-posted posts on Blogs I follow. They are reposted typically because they have a significance to the Writer, and having the opportunity to read it (again) is a privilege.
I am inspired to do the same; repost something from my archives, once each month this year. Care to join me and celebrate our Pasts together? If you decide to join in, ping back to this post so I can find you.
Last month, I revisited the idea of Seasons in our lives. This month, in line with my conversations about Beauty, I relook the role of music in my Life.
After the brush with pneumonia & the long ICU stay in May last year, it took a while to recover the ability to talk. And sing. As I struggled to regain control over my vocal chords, I promised myself that once I was better, I would do something more with my voice. I have since begun singing lessons (with Mom & Dad). Funnily & happily, the singing exercises have helped my running; using the breathing techniques I learn in our singing sessions, I can control my breathing better which translates into running faster & longer. Once again, I am reminded of how precious music is.
This is written in response to Daily Post’s Daily Prompt, Longing
There are times in my life when I feel an inexplicable sense that something isn’t quite right in the universe, a longing for something that I can’t articulate; this is a feeling that Loving Husband has termed my “existential loneliness”. In these instances, the one thing that I turn to which helps soothe the persistent ache is music.