Monday, May 24, 2010

I ♥ B&W too!

Many of my 52 week challenge photos so far have been full of color, so this one might look like I'm doing something out of character. But the truth is, I'm a fan of black and white photography too. I just find them hard to do because color is such an important part of my life.

I do think black and white photography brings out a different level of beauty though, and had always wished that I could do it well. As I mentioned earlier, I was also having a hard time taking good photos of flowers, so I somehow managed to overcome 2 of my challenges in this one shot!

I don't know if this was just a fluke or me getting over the initial hump, but I know for certain that I'll keep trying to do more of these :)

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

You Know What They Say About Apples Falling...

I ♥ Color A couple of years ago, I got this set of craft scissors because I'm a sucker for crafty things, and I'm a TOTAL sucker for crafty things that come in a rainbow of colors!

I don't scrap book, so I haven't used them for much - other than just cutting paper for the sake of cutting and marveling at the neat squiggly cuts that they create! I'll admit it, these scissors are in my possession for the sole purpose of making me happy. Just being able to look at them and play with them makes me happy!

Well, recently, I decided my son was old enough to handle scissors, so I handed him a pair and some paper destined for recycling.

Let me tell you, he is just as enamored with these scissors as I am! He has to play with them at least once a day, and he'll arrange and rearrange the scissors until he likes the color combo. Then he'll cut, and cut, and cut until the room looks like a parade went through and dumped a boatload of confetti.

Sure, clean-up time is a bit overwhelming, but he's pretty good about helping me pick up. Plus, I'll take confetti over endless hours of cars and trucks and trains any day!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Children's Day

Today, May 5th, is "Tango no Sekku" in Japan. It's the boy's equivalent of "Hina Matsuri" that I mentioned back in March.

Instead of dolls, we display a small battle helmet called Kabuto as well as Koi Nobori, which are wind socks shaped like Koi fish. I remember being petrified of them both when I was little! Kabuto, by its nature is meant to intimidate, and Koi Noboris can be quite large. They often have golden eyes with red streaks, and I always thought they looked angry.

Now that I look at them as an adult, though, I think they are quite elegant. My son's Kabuto has intricate floral details while maintaining to appear masculine. And Koi Noboris are quite majestic swimming in the blue sky.

Although it's not meant to be, fighting with my brother was also a May 5th "tradition" in our house! After WWII, the government decided to make May 5th a national holiday, and quite unfortunately, named it Children's Day. I always felt it was unfair that boys got the spotlight on "Children's" Day, while my brother always argued that girls already had their own day in March. I'm sure that same "tradition" played out throughout Japan again this year!

Monday, May 3, 2010

52 Week Challenge: Week 17

Gateway to Heaven
This week, I was determined not to scramble on Sunday to shoot a photo for my 52 week project. I pulled out my camera on Wednesday with an image in mind. The condition was perfect. It was a sunny day, so there were plenty of natural light, which I prefer to use. My son was taking a nap, so there were no distractions. Yet, in the end, I didn't like any of the photos that I took.

The one above, on the other hand, was taken on a whim. I had brought the camera upstairs to recharge the batteries and had forgotten all about it. I only saw it when I went back up to help my son go to bed. I picked it up and took a few pictures in very dim lighting (only 2 nightlights), and I didn't think much of it while I was taking it.

It was only when I started changing the orientation of the photo in Photoshop that I finally saw the archway. The gateway to heaven.

And I don't mean that in just the literal sense. When things suddenly click like that, I do feel like I got a chance to glimpse heaven. Because the joy you feel then is not tainted by any expectations. It is just a pure delight.