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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

A picture from the beach

Hello, I'm back from vacation, and a bunch of photos are about to pop up on this blog! (Just a warning, haha). But here is a preview; my family opted for walks on the beach instead of making sand castles, but we passed this little family who made a different castle every day. They were really into it, digging with real shovels and building a few bridges (you can see one on the boy's right). This picture was taken right as my mom commented on a toy whale that was hanging out in the moat, and the boy looked up at us and cheerfully exclaimed, "That's mine!"

The improvement I would make to this picture would be to aim for a straighter line in the waves in across the back. You can see that the scene is a little tilted.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The cutest demon bird ever

Exactly what the title of my post says: This is the cutest little demon-looking bird ever. It is an owl, but I don't remember the exact name of it.

Look at the eyes! It is clearly plotting something nefarious.
But he fluffiness factor is totally killing the ability to believe it is evil.
That is the worst kind. They are all cute and fluffy and the evilness sneaks up on you too late!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

My Summer So Far....

Okay, so now that I have a bit more time, here is a recap of my summer, as evidence by these pictures! Be warned there is a lot of fun and sarcasm in my personality for this post. I had a lot of fun. I think school is finally getting to me :)

One day, my family woke up and decided to go to the zoo. We have passes because we kind of go crazy about the zoo. So what, we're grown up adults? Never stopped us yet ;) During the penguin feeding, a Great Blue Heron decided to stop by. Such a majestic and HUGE bird!

There was also this classy looking flower-plant by the elephants. The colors look just like the kale from the farmer's market! It makes me happy.

My all time most favorite part of summer are the California poppies. These little kiddos are beautiful from a physical and biological standpoint. When I was in ninth grade, I used to look at all of them in our backyard because they showed dominant, co-dominant, and recessive genes via their color, and I'm kind of obsessed with it. See the orange fading to sunshine yellow? Some of the them are all orange, and some are white! And I think it is so cool that they open and close with the sunrise and sunset!!! Ahhh, okay I'll stop talking about my love affair with these flowers. But just so I can admire their amazingness and beauty, there is this picture above.

A month ago, my mom planted new flowers! This is one of them. I don't remember what it is, but it is so pretty. It sort of reminds me of a lily. I like the seemingly delicate look of the petals. A good flower to give a sweet little girl...
Okay that might have been a slightly weird comment. Sorry. Moving on....

Baby duck! Also called duckling!! I hung out with 3/4 of my old Girl Scout Troop (which was only 4 girls total) at what my city passes for a beach (it is actually a nice one, as far as beaches go). We were sitting on some rocks at the edge of the lake, and this cute little duckling swam by with its [legal?] (does legality apply to ducks?) guardian. We kind of went crazy over its cuteness factor. And discussed other names for baby animals. I had a weird moment when I completely blanked on what a baby dog is called (hint, it isn't doggy). That one goes down in the books for stupid quotes we shouldn't ever repeat :P 

And THIS happened in my house. Yuuup, we are fully capable of producing flowering tropical plants in the Pacific NW. I was fiddling around with the manual a bit here, and this lovely picture happened. Taken at the dead of night (when I finally noticed that something bloomed that wasn't there before. I said we could keep the plants alive, not that we are very aware of them... :P ) with artificial lighting. Looks like it was taken during the day if you ignore the grossly lit wall in the background, eh? 

And on one of our hot (80 degrees F, haha) days, I braved a walk out to this lake near my old high school where I used to sit with The Boyfriend. The Boyfriend suggested I draw a picture of the lake from "our spot" but I couldn't without a picture (Problems of a picky drawer....). So I braved walking on a windy path past scary barking and howling dogs of all sizes and random sketchy guys smoking sort-of-legal substances (i.e. weed) to take this picture and a few others. (Guilt tripping....haha. The Boyfriend better appreciate his drawing when he gets it :P ). A lot of people were out, as evidenced by these kids.

 I liked the resulting framing of the trees and brick detail in this picture. It looks like we are looking through a window into a different scenery.


So that was my summer so far...how was yours?

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Farmer's market

Hello, summer has been so busy, and I've been taking summer classes so I haven't had as much time as I would like to take and post pictures.Gray cement buildings can only be so photogenic :P

But, I finally got out into the sun today on a trip to my neighborhood's farmer's market. I love the variety of produce and array of colors! Here are some pictures of the colors:

I love the colors of kale. You think they are just a bland green when you hear the name. But it turns out to be bleached turquoise with the edges and veins a sneaky shade of purple. The cool frosty color reminds me of winter. I am in love with the look of kale.

Red chili peppers!

Have you ever seen colored carrots? I think they look cute! All the pastel colors running into each other....

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Kitty Kitty Kitty Kitty Kitty!

The brother is cat sitting for a friend and invited me over to play with them. This one, Dusty, had to stay inside because he got attacked (they are outside cats) and is in the cone of shame :P But he was more than happy to rub against my leg and roll over for some scratching. Dusty is all grey, and such a pretty cat! I felt a little bad for him though because he really wanted to go out side. He kept going to the door and trying to nudge it open a crack. It was actually pretty hilarious/adorable when he would try to get his head into the corner but the cone would just hit it with a smack, and his head a good few inches away. There was a lot of clacking and mrow-ing. But he settled down a little for some pictures. I forgot my camera, so these are with my phone's camera.

We were trying to get Dusty to stay still so The Brother could take a picture of the wound to send a progress report to Dusty's owner. I love the alert look. When you scratch is head though, he squeezes his eyes shut and sticks out his tongue. It is adorable!

Kitty in the sun!

I thought this one was a bit defiant :)

I kind of want a cat now though! I think I might when I am alone and on my own. It would be a nice companion I could talk to. I'm just worried I'll get a demon kitty or something :P I want a friend to cuddle with. And I'm not too keen on their "presents" ;)

Monday, July 1, 2013

The simplicity of Homemade cookies

I made some oatmeal raisin chocolate chip cookies last weekend, and as they were cooling on the pan, the afternoon sun slanted through the window right onto the cooling cookies. I thought it made for an interesting picture. Looking back, I also realized that though this picture is essentially three colors, the simplicity of it reminds me of what homemade cooking really is: a small gesture that means so much more.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Recording the beauty of long-stemmed flowers

Hello all! My family had a lovely visitor who is friends with my brother from college stay with us. She is in the coast guard, and needed a place to stay for a few days, so we opened up our house to her, and in return, she gave us some lovely long-stemmed flowers! I'm not sure what kind they are, but they are beautiful! This is the first time I've ever seen any long-stemmed anything! I might have to treat myself to some later on in the winter when things tend to look a little gray around here....

Here's any interesting fact: in Russia and many other Eastern countries, it is considered rude to give an even number of flowers. I believe that this gesture has something to do with death or bad wishes. I also know that in flower arrangement, it is best to use an odd number of flowers so that the eye can find a place to rest and look at instead of peering between two flowers or something. So our visitor (who is well-traveled) gave us five long stemmed flowers. 

I thought they deserved to become photographic evidence of beauty :)

I couldn't get all five in the picture, but I thought I would try to show their long stems. Aren't the colors beautiful together? And the petals really are this rich deep pink.

The underside of the petals are equally interesting

The rest of these pictures were all taken in the filtered sunlight in my dining room. They turned out rather well with nice shadows!

I love the little detail of the fluted ends of the petals and how the light highlights them!

Have a nice day! It is supposed to be up in the 80s here (this is considered boiling where I live :P )

Monday, June 17, 2013

old summer photo

Here's a photo I took last year when my family went for a drive down to the ferry docks. As the sun set, it cast beautiful colors and shadows. There is no editing in this picture aside from my name at the bottom!

Thursday, June 13, 2013


Today is the last day I have with this view. It's lovely isn't it? It was certainly the best part of my room. The sunsets and clear days were beautiful.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

And there a rose garden lay

As proof of exactly how taken up I have been with my (for once) fun and truly interesting classes (as in architecture and chemistry. The math isn't going so hot today. Maybe that is because I have my final....) I have to admit: I have been totally oblivious to my surroundings. You know, the environment that I pass everyday? Twice? Yup. Stuff happened and changed and prettied up, and I was too distracted to even notice them. 

So you say, maybe it was small, easy to pass up. But no. No it really wasn't. For who could miss the bursts of color amidst the surrounding gray concrete and green hedge-fences? Who could miss all FOUR of these large gardens surrounding Drumheller fountain? Who could possibly not notice all the fragrant smells of the hundreds of different buds opening before our eyes? Who would just walk right past them, a mere foot away from their grabby thorns and NOT NOTICE?

Um, yeah. That would be me.

For two weeks.


But I finally came to my senses before my obliviousness got too out of hand ;) And at last on a beautiful sunny day while I wore a pretty sundress and traipsed about my classes, I saw beauty. She was a blanket laid on the ground, sparkling in the sun. Sometimes she waved in the wind, and became dancing colors.

And here are some pictures:

This is the President's Rose garden. All special, hand picked, and sometimes rare roses right in one place at once. The ones that drew me in the most were the variegated roses and the ones with bright colored petals. My favorites for sure were the orange ones. I just love the luminescence they pick up from the light, and how even their shadows look soft and urge you to stroke one.

And when I finally managed to peel myself away from such beauty, I found this nest in a lantern!

In other words, I'm having a wonderful week :)
Despite finals.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Nature's weird creations: Flower edition

Hello, I've been asked to post more pictures recently, so here are some flowers! I'd like to title these: nature's weird creations. Scroll down, and you'll see why. It's so interesting how much flowers vary, and what physical traits nature decides to bestow them with.

This looks like a little compact bouquet of flowers. All ready to be shown off and framed in green! I like how the shadows give the different petals depth.

The texture of these petals, and the creamy white allude to some sort of fancy event for some reason. Don't you want to touch them? I really like the pop of the crisp green bulbs in the center of the flowers--it is a nice contrast and keeps the flowers from being boring. That, and have you seen many four-petal flowers? I think most are 5 or 6.... 

Surprise! These two pictures are the SAME type flower! The only difference is that the one on top is just blooming. Isn't that so strange? I thought it looked like a bow of sorts. I really like the rippled look before it blooms into a regular-ish looking flower.

Also, I didn't notice that the top picture was taken with the flash on (I know, I know, how can you not notice that??) The flash ended up making the edges of the petals a white glow, and a washed out look. Now I remember why I don't use direct flash usually!

Aren't these flowers a sight? It was quite interesting how this one bunch of flowers were so variegated, from white to purple. They remind me of flowers at a wedding.
Also, the white stamens (I think) make the flower take on the essence of a cactus! 

Friday, May 24, 2013

A few pictures revisited...

So I have finally had some down time in my school work, and I turned to flipping through a few folders of my pictures. And then I got the urge to do some black and white photos, but didn't want to go out into the rainy weather (yes, I know it was sunny just last weekend....), so I did what I don't normally do, and altered a few of my pictures on picmonkey (yay free websites!). And here are the results! I'd like to know what you think of them...better? worse?

I paired each one with its original:


The main change here was simple turning the picture black and white. I think it worked well because of the fine detail, but the background got a bit messy. I cropped it to try to remedy that, but am still not entirely happy with the outcome. I'm glad that only the center is in focus though, which helps take the eye away from the back.


Altered (1):
I majorly boosted the color on this one. I really like how it brought out the green, but still kept the mystic fog. 

Altered (2):
I simply turned the one above black and white, and the boosted color helped make sharper contrasts and detail. I can't tell if I like this one better than the latter, but I definitely like these best out of my alterations in this round.


I boosted the color here as well, which made the purples much deeper and more of a royal purple versus a lilac purple. Then I zoomed in and cropped. I've never zoomed in on a picture before and then cropped it! It give it a more computer-monitor-y feel to it, because I think the colors are too fake and the zoom makes everything a bit blurry. But I think too much detail might have actually made it too busy?

So what do you all think? Which is your favorite? Least favorite?
I actually find these alterations quite calming and fun! haha

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Artful message

Two words, with two different meanings, but put them next to each other, and they have so much power.

The way these words were written on the stairs were imaginative, colored in separate rectangles on the edges of each step. I was quite impressed!

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Photo of the day: The campus at night

I live on a beautiful campus. 
Look at these lights on a rainy night;
the soft glow is warmth and beauty.

Spring flowers

It's spring! Which means that everything is blooming at once. So here are a gazillion pictures of pretty flowers that were taken in my city's week of spring sunshine. I'm always amazed by how many different flowers there are on campus! They are so bright and colorful.

Have you ever heard of the Bulgarian holiday Baba Marta, where red and white bracelets called Martenitsa are given out as a greeting to welcome the end of winter and beginning of spring? Well my TA for math is from there, and he brought this tradition along to the people who visited him in office hours. Technically the holiday is in March, so we were a bit late, but I still liked the sharing of his culture. Anyways, you are supposed to tie the bracelet around the first blooming plant you see. 

Well, on campus, everything bloomed at once! But I decided to choose a small bright bushy-eyed cherry tree on the edge of Red Square. I was a little afraid I would hurt the tree, so I tied is loosely around the tree, and as the tree grows, I'm planning to go back and cut it off so it doesn't restrict the branch. But it was kind of deliriously exciting to take my bracelet off and tie it on a tree. I'm not sure why, and I'm not going to analyze it, but anyways, here's photographic evidence! haha.

I really enjoy the one part in focus and the seeming zoomed in focal point to that spot. I particularly enjoy the pop of color. These are the brightest flowers I have seen. 

I also like the surprise of the yellow dots smattering the blue.

A lively strip of magenta to break up the monotony...

I wish I could have gotten that little piece of yellow out of the corner, but the wind was waving these flowers around like crazy. I'm actually quite happy with the crisp detail I managed to get; definitely using a fast shutter speed. I also liked the coloring. Yellow is expected, but this young flower is striped with green, which is fascinating to me.

I liked the smattering of colors given by the flower petals blown away in the wind. The bright colors don't overpower each other, which is nice.

The delicacy of dandelions is absurd. But their puffy seeds are so beautiful in the air.

I think this is wisteria. It is beautiful, isn't it? I like the way it catches the sunlight. The white seems to glow, withholding the light.

Enjoy the flowers around you, and the many more to come in summer.